January 6, 2019 - The Sunday Edition with Michael Enright

Listen to this week's episode with host Michael Enright.
Michael Enright, host of 'The Sunday Edition.' (CBC)
Listen to the full episode2:36:26

Liberals around the world are struggling to define themselves - Michael's essay: "Because our governors seemed confused about everything from Brexit to wall-building to pipelines that went nowhere, the confusion was passed on to the citizenry like utility bills. If 2018 looked like an explosion in a banana factory, 2019 is on course for an equally dreary sequel."

Benjamin Netanyahu faces the challenge of his career: As Israel's prime minister campaigns against powerful opponents in the run-up to an April election, he must also contend with police allegations of corruption. And he remains at the epicentre of one of the world's most bitter conflicts -- his country's relationship with the Palestinians. Michael's guest is Anshel Pfeffer, author of the new biography, Bibi: The Turbulent Life and Times of Benjamin Netanyahu.

Essay - What Happened When the Cat Died: Paula Hudson Lunn's grief over the death of Sir Hamish, her tough old orange tabby cat, was eased when she discovered he had been much loved by her neighbours and friends as well.

Ethan Loch, a blind, 13-year-old piano prodigy from Scotland, and Canadian painter Tony Luciani bring two art forms together: Artist Tony Luciani's challenge was to make visual the vibrant world of someone who cannot see. He did just that in his painting of a boy giant that's on the cover of Ethan Loch's new CD.  Alisa Siegel's documentary is called "Inside My Head."

Why we have to forget to remember: As the population ages, a lot of attention is being devoted to memory research. But Oliver Hardt of McGill University says forgetting is not a failure -- it's our brains working as they were designed. We must forget, in order to remember. Hardt is an assistant professor of psychology at McGill University, specializing in cognitive neuroscience.

Elisapee Ishulutaq's art helped define how the Inuit are seen around the world: Elisapee Ishulutaq's drawings of men hunting seals, women caring for babies, and polar bears out on a jaunt are simple and striking. In 2014, she received the Order of Canada; that's when our David Gutnick met her. Elisapee Ishulutaq died on December 9 at the age of 93.

'Words are all we have': Samuel Beckett and our times: Suddenly Beckett is everywhere. His plays are not just being staged, but selling out. He may be the most pertinent writer for our absurd and chaotic post-truth times, as we struggle to find purpose, meaning and reason for hope. In this special one-hour exploration of Beckett's life and work, we'll hear excerpts from his timeless plays, "Waiting for Godot" and "Krapp's Last Tape," and interviews with Beckett enthusiasts such as novelist John Banville; Bob Nasmith and Mac Fyfe, the actor and director of Theatre Passe Muraille's production of "Krapp's Last Tape"; and Irish actor Lisa Dwan.

Music this week from: Natalie Cole, the Boss Brass, the Israel Flute Ensemble and Philip Glass.