This interview was originally broadcast on Fresh Air on March 26, 2012. When God Talks Back was released in paperback on Nov. 13.
While attending services and small group meetings at The Vineyard, an evangelical church with 600 branches across the country, anthropologist T.M. Luhrmann noticed that several members of the congregation said God had repeatedly spoken to them and that they had heard what God wanted them to do.
It's the sort of juxtaposition that often arises at this time of year: novel adaptations arriving in droves at movie theaters, hunting for Oscar nominations.
J.R.R. Tolkien's fantastical The Hobbit and Yann Martel's lifeboat adventure Life of Pi are coming soon, and this week Leo Tolstoy's romantic tragedy Anna Karenina goes head to head with Matthew Quick's romantic comedy Silver Linings Playbook.
It's Thanksgiving time again, and while we're very sad to be without our pal Glen Weldon this week, we're happy to be joined by the lovely Barrie Hardymon.
We start with a discussion of Thanksgiving and pop culture — and, more specifically, why there's not as much Thanksgiving-themed pop culture as you might think, particularly compared to Christmas. We explore the turkey episodes of Friends and other comedies, but talk a little about the surprising dearth of Thanksgiving movies.
At the beginning of What About Dick?, a stage performance released this week as a digital download, writer/performer Eric Idle announces that the audience will be witnessing "Aural Cinema." The story — a tangential, broadly comic yarn involving the decline of the British Empire and "the birth of a sex toy invented in Shagistan in 1898" — is to be performed in the style of a radio play, with the actors (Russell Brand, Eddie Izzard, Billy Connolly, Tim Curry and Tracey Ullman, to name five) reading their parts from scripts into