The Sunday Edition — May 20, 2018

Listen to the full episode.

Michael's essay: Assumptions made about black people can be harmful, even deadly

"We make assumptions about black Americans and Canadians that would never occur to us if they were white."

Jagmeet Singh's struggle to define the NDP while dousing fires in his caucus

The leader of the federal NDP is articulate and stylish. But who is he really? We can’t see him in action in parliament, because he doesn’t have a seat. And he has been preoccupied with disciplining several caucus members accused of sexual assault.

Singing the heavenly music of 18th century Quebec nuns

A group of professional singers known as Ensemble Scholastica is bringing religious history back to life in Quebec City. They’re performing music that was once sung by the nuns of the Congrégation de Notre Dame in the 1700s.

Journalism is the foundation of fiction, said the late Tom Wolfe

Two decades ago, Michael talked to the novelist, journalist and trenchant observer of American life, Tom Wolfe, who died this week. They talk about “the new journalism”, the depression that can follow a heart-attack, and that famous white (sorry, cream) suit.

Dismissed in her lifetime, African-American writer Zora Neale Hurston is considered a legend in ours

As Hurston's non-fiction book about the last survivor of the last slave ship is finally released to the public, Michael Enright speaks with writers and scholars about her extraordinary life and legacy.

Meatless meat, miracle berries and big money. Welcome to the future of food

Ira Basen's documentary, Table Stakes, explores how science and innovation aim to save the world from food shortages. Ira visits the Future Food-Tech Summit in San Francisco.

The Sunday Edition — May 13, 2018

Listen to the full episode.

Michael's essay: Ford turns its back on the family sedan

The Ford motor company has announced it won’t make sedans anymore - just SUVs and trucks. “Setting aside the economic realities of the industry, the coming disappearance of the family sedan connotes a sea change in our love affair with the car.”

Covering the Trump era through Canadian eyes

The scandal-plagued Trump White House is daily fare for MSNBC, the left-leaning cable TV network where Ali Velshi, who grew up in Toronto, is a respected host and anchor. He’s Michael’s guest.

My Mother's Threads: daughter weaves garment factory stories into art

Artist Sara Angelucci spent nine months in the Hamilton, Ont., factory where her mother once worked as a seamstress. The images, objects and recordings she collected are featured in her exhibit, Piece Work. Alisa Siegel's documentary is called “My Mother's Threads.”

Doctors need to know the cost of the drugs they prescribe

Patients who can't afford to buy the drugs they need may face life-altering consequences. Michael talks to Dr. Iris Gorfinkel, who says authorities must mandate drug price transparency.

In a digital age, Ken Whyte ventures into the publishing world

The former editor of Maclean's and the National Post talks to Michael about why he’s launching The Sutherland House -- a publishing business that will focus on long-form non-fiction books.

A lesson in living, from a dying mother

It is said that our mothers are our first teachers. If we're lucky, our mothers keep delivering lessons - especially life lessons - right to the end. Gary Westover's essay is called “Final Days.”

The Sunday Edition — May 6, 2018

Listen to the full episode.

Lyme disease -- the first epidemic of climate change

As global temperatures climb, disease-carrying ticks are moving into new areas. Lyme disease is hard to diagnose, and inflicts harrowing symptoms which can linger long after treatment. Journalist Mary Beth Pfeiffer reports on how human activity has propelled this growing menace, and how modern medicine has underestimated its danger.

What the Dutch can teach the world about managing floods

Tropical cyclones are routine in many parts of the world, but experts agree that Hurricane Harvey was intensified by the unusually high temperatures in the Gulf of Mexico’s balmy waters. They also agree that there will be many more catastrophic weather events, as the world's climate continues to change. One country already has a great deal of expertise when it comes to keeping things dry. David talks to Dutch water expert Henk Ovink, who travels the world advising governments on how to reduce loss of life and property damage caused by floods.

At age 6 she escaped the Rwandan genocide, but the ghosts linger

Clemantine Wamariya was just 6 years old in 1994 when she and her older sister fled their Rwandan home to escape genocide. As many as a million people were slaughtered; two million were displaced. Clemantine’s story is one of fear, deprivation and horror, but also of ingenuity, resilience and ultimately, of survival.

An encounter with a creative genius

Twenty-five years ago, Curtis Barlow was Canada's cultural counsellor in Washington. His encounter with a determined woman who was at the time a relatively unknown Canadian painter, pushed him out of his comfort zone and into a new way of thinking. Curtis Barlow’s essay is called, "The Artist."

A mother-daughter bond strengthens during a gruelling trek along the Coastal Mountains

Tania and Martina Halik hiked for about 2,300 kilometres across some of Canada’s most rugged terrain. The Haliks faced many challenges, including bitter cold, avalanche threats and arduous river crossings. They tell guest host Laura Lynch why they’d do it all again.

Canada's prison system should be radically reduced

Lawyer Paula Mallea has defended inmates in nine Canadian penitentiaries. Her experience has led her to the conclusion that punishment and incarceration are regressive, harmful measures for everybody involved. In her book, Beyond Incarceration; Safety and True Criminal Justice, she argues for a system where prison is no longer the default, other than for those who pose a danger to society.

The Sunday Edition — April 29, 2018

Listen to the full episode.

Michael's essay: The horror of mass murder by vehicle comes to Toronto

“We have to find motive. We can’t fully accept the randomness of the thing. We search for explanation. We crave coherence.”

A primer on the Kinder Morgan pipeline

Author Chris Turner chats with Michael Enright about the Kinder Morgan pipeline in his book The Patch: The People, Pipelines and Politics of the Oilsands.

In the 70s, daring young women created the North's first public transit system

A group of gutsy young feminists in Whitehorse, intent on helping women break free of isolation, set up the first public transit system in the north. They called themselves the Yukon Women's Mini-Bus Society.