98 episodes

Conversations on news and culture with Kerri Miller. Weekdays from MPR News.

MPR News with Kerri Miller Minnesota Public Radio

    • Arts
    • 4.3 • 172 Ratings

Conversations on news and culture with Kerri Miller. Weekdays from MPR News.

    Professor Kelly Lytle Hernández explores the linked histories of the U.S. and Mexico

    Professor Kelly Lytle Hernández explores the linked histories of the U.S. and Mexico

    Many Americans don’t know that the histories of the United States and Mexico are inseparably intertwined. But historian Kelly Lytle Hernández says you cannot fully understand one without the other.

    We fought wars over the same territories, influenced each other’s politics, and remain deeply connected economically. Our stories circle around each other, shaping immigration policies and policing. And if we don’t know how we got here, says Hernández, we won’t know how to move forward.

    Her new book, “Bad Mexicans: Race, Empire, And Revolution In The Borderlands” tells the true story of a Mexican band of rebels, the magonistas, who helped launch the Mexican Revolution in 1910 and whose actions still affect the borderlands today. She talked about what she learned while researching her book and why she believes the U.S. ignores its history with Mexico at its own peril with host Kerri Miller on this week’s Big Books and Bold Ideas.

    Guest:


    Kelly Lytle Hernández is a professor of history, African-American studies and urban planning at UCLA. Her latest book is “Bad Mexicans.”




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

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    • 51 min
    From the archives: How immigration shapes America

    From the archives: How immigration shapes America

    Minnesota Public Radio

    Indivisible Radio examined America in transition, during President Donald Trump's first 100 days in office.





    This week’s Big Books and Bold Ideas features a conversation with historian Kelly Lytle Hernandez about her new book, “Bad Mexicans.” It tells the dramatic and often overlooked story of the magonistas, the migrant rebels who sparked the 1910 Mexican Revolution from the United States, and how their escapades threatened to undo the rise of Anglo-American power, on both sides of the border, and created the world of fraught immigration we live in today.

    To prepare for that discussion, here’s a selection from the archives — a 2017 “Indivisible” conversation Miller had with Eboo Patel and Tamar Jacoby that examines how America’s history as a land of immigrants can be maintained under then President Trump’s divisive immigration policies.

    Guests:


    Eboo Patel is the founder and president of Interfaith America (formerly Interfaith Youth Core) and the author of several books, including “We Need to Build: Field Notes for Diverse Democracy.”

    Tamar Jacoby is currently the president of Opportunity America. At the time of this recording, she was president and CEO of ImmigrationWorks USA. She is also the author of several books, including “Reinventing the Melting Pot: The New Immigrants and What It Means To Be American.”




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or RSS.

    Subscribe to the Thread newsletter for the latest book and author news and must-read recommendations. 

    • 54 min
    Funeral director Caleb Wilde on 'All the Ways Our Dead Still Speak'

    Funeral director Caleb Wilde on 'All the Ways Our Dead Still Speak'

    For more than 170 years, Caleb Wilde’s family has served their Pennsylvania community by facilitating funerals. He has walked beside countless grieving people as they say goodbye, memorialize and weep. He’s attended thousands of funeral services, filled with comforting messages about heaven and future reunions.

    But despite that — or maybe because of it — Wilde says he’s skeptical about life after death.

    “I have become a fundamentalist of doubt,” he writes eloquently in his new book. “Death is so sudden and so final that in order for humans to cope with mortality, they make up a place that is immortal and eternal — the afterlife.’

    That book, “All the Ways Our Dead Still Speak,” is a thoughtful reflection of Wilde’s experiences as a funeral director. He no longer believes in heaven or hell — at least not in the traditional sense. But he also cannot dismiss the experiences and even conversations some grieving families have with their dead loved ones.

    Friday, on Big Books and Bold Ideas, host Kerri Miller spoke with Wilde about what he’s learned from having a front-row seat to death since he was a small boy. Do our dead still speak?

    Guest:


    Caleb Wilde is a sixth-generation funeral director (for now), a theology student and the author of the award-winning “Confessions of a Funeral Director.” His new book is “All the Ways Our Dead Still Speak.”




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or RSS.

    Subscribe to the Thread newsletter for the latest book and author news and must-read recommendations. 

    • 51 min
    Historian Carol Anderson on the assault to undermine voting rights

    Historian Carol Anderson on the assault to undermine voting rights

    Fifty-seven years ago this week, on Aug. 6, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed the landmark Voting Rights Act, with Martin Luther King and other civil rights leaders looking on. It was a turning point in American history. At the time, Pres. Johnson called it “a victory of freedom for the nation.”

    Thursday morning, in a special edition of Big Books and Bold Ideas, host Kerri Miller examined whether the commitment of that milestone legislation still holds all these years later, particularly as the Supreme Court takes on one case that could upend state election laws and another that challenges a key section of the Voting Rights Act. Her guide was Professor Carol Anderson, one of the nation’s foremost scholars on equity and voting and the author of “One Person, No Vote.”

    Guest:


    Carol Anderson is a professor of African-American studies at Emory University and an accomplished author.




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or RSS.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Angela Davis podcast on: Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or RSS.

    Subscribe to the Thread newsletter for the latest book and author news and must-read recommendations. 

    • 51 min
    From the archives: Sunita Puri on living — and dying — well

    From the archives: Sunita Puri on living — and dying — well

    Even though Americans are living longer — the share of the U.S. population 65 and older has more than tripled over the last century — we are still profoundly uncomfortable with dying. In fact, the end of life is so medicalized, death is often viewed as a failure, rather than accepted as a fundamental stage of life.

    Sunita Puri wants to change that. Her book, "That Good Night: Life and Medicine in the Eleventh Hour," is a masterful memoir of helping people to die — and live — well. It chronicles her journey of becoming a palliative care doctor near the end of her medical school training after she realized medicine had little to say about patients' suffering and mortality.

    It mirrors thoughts shared by author and sixth-generation funeral director Caleb Wilde in his new book, “All the Ways Our Dead Still Speak.” Wilde’s tender and personal reflections on what it’s like to grieve loved ones and grapple with death will be the conversation on this Friday’s installment of Big Books and Bold Ideas.

    Until then, enjoy this throwback from 2019 with Puri about how we need to rethink death so we can truly live well.

    Guest:


    Sunita Puri is a practicing palliative medicine physician and the author of “That Good Night.”




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or RSS.

    Subscribe to the Thread newsletter for the latest book and author news and must-read recommendations. 

    • 40 min
    Quan Barry on her new novel, 'When I'm Gone, Look For Me in the East'

    Quan Barry on her new novel, 'When I'm Gone, Look For Me in the East'

    Twins Mun and Chuluun are 23 years old when Quan Barry’s new novel opens, but in almost every other way, their lives are the opposite. Chuluun lives and studies at a Buddhist monastery in the countryside of Mongolia. Mun wears Western clothes and lives in the capital city, where he enjoys technology, tattoos and women.

    But the brothers share a constant connection — a sort of mental telepathy that means they share thoughts with the other in a running stream. And each twin wants the other out of his head.

    They come together when they are tasked with traveling the country to find a tulku, the reincarnation of a great spiritual leader. So they set off on a road trip, a quest that will take them to vistas both inner and outer, on a journey to find the elusive real.

    Barry was inspired to write the book after her own travels to Mongolia, she tells MPR News host Kerri Miller on this week’s Big Books and Bold Ideas. Listen to the conversation for more about this road novel with a supernatural twist.

    Guest:


    Quan Barry is a poet, playwright, novelist and English professor. Her latest book is “When I’m Gone, Look for Me in the East.”




    To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.

    Subscribe to the MPR News with Kerri Miller podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or RSS.

    Subscribe to the Thread newsletter for the latest book and author news and must-read recommendations. 

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
172 Ratings

172 Ratings

Thunderforge ,

Informative and a joy to listen to

The topics are varied, the guests are wonderful, and the callers provide new perspectives that expand the discussion. A wonderful podcast for anyone who wants to expand their understanding on complex ideas.

APFineday ,

Insightful and well read

Thanks so much for the insightful questions and conversation which are based on the perceptions of well read and thoughtful readers

MnReview ,

defund MPR

biased leftist garbage, these democrat activists need to be defunded

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