Writers & Companywith Eleanor Wachtel
Flemish writer Stefan Hertmans pursues a tale of star-crossed love in the Middle Ages
Hertmans spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about The Convert, a tragic story of forbidden lovers set at the time of the Crusades.
Sharon Olds on the joy and peril of writing deeply personal poetry
The Pulitzer Prize-winning American poet spoke with Eleanor Wachtel at the Vancouver Writers Festival in 2016. Olds is among the nominees for the 2020 Griffin Poetry Prize.
Zimbabwe's Petina Gappah casts new light on David Livingstone's search for the source of the Nile
The Zimbabwean lawyer and writer spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about her fascination with the 19th-century explorer and his obsession with one of the world’s longest waterways.
Two-time Booker Prize winner Hilary Mantel wraps up her blockbuster Tudor trilogy with The Mirror & the Light
The English writer spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about saying goodbye to Thomas Cromwell.
From Virginia Woolf to Dorothy L. Sayers — one London square and five remarkable women who lived there
British biographer Francesca Wade spoke to Eleanor Wachtel about social change, personal freedoms and literary ambition between the First and Second World Wars.
Ruth Reichl's bittersweet adventures in food — from her mother's kitchen to The New York Times
In this 2006 conversation with Eleanor Wachtel, the American author and culinary editor spoke about the life of a food critic — and how a love for cuisine has defined her life and career.
Translator and writer Jennifer Croft on her extraordinary childhood and the places it's led her
The American author and translator's memoir is a poignant exploration of language, sisterhood and overcoming personal tragedy.
Christopher Ricks on why Bob Dylan is "the greatest living user of the English language"
Literary critic and scholar Christopher Ricks discusses why Nobel Prize laureate Bob Dylan deserves to be included among the greatest writers of all time.
From Soviet Russia to Trump's America, Masha Gessen on the nature of power and morality
The Russian-American journalist, author, translator and activist spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about the abuse of power and rise of modern totalitarianism.
Maaza Mengiste on the untold story of Ethiopia's women warriors during Italian occupation
In conversation with Eleanor Wachtel, the Ethiopian-American writer spoke about writing historical fiction that looks at the real-life pride and power of an African nation.
Star choreographer Alexei Ratmansky makes breathtaking ballet out of classic literature
The Russian-born choreographer spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about training as a young dancer in St. Petersburg and getting his start at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.
Jeanette Winterson brings humour and understanding to a fraught childhood
In honour of International Women's Day, we revisit Eleanor Wachtel's 2012 conversation with the celebrated British writer.
Chris Ware on how Peanuts, his mother and being bullied in school made him a cartoonist
The American cartoonist spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about how his childhood shaped his distinctive art style and outlook on life.
From Tripoli to Tuscany: Libyan writer Hisham Matar finds new connections between art and life
In conversation with Eleanor Wachtel, Matar talks about the ways that place, art, loss and grief can intersect.
Adam Foulds on celebrity, solitude and the madness of desire
The Toronto-based British author talks about his love of film and society's fascination with actors and celebrity with Eleanor Wachtel.
George Steiner on morality, his love of books and the marvels of language
Eleanor Wachtel revisits her 1995 conversation with the American literary critic and writer about the power of human speech. He died on Feb. 3, 2020.
French filmmaker Céline Sciamma on looking, longing and falling in love in Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Sciamma spoke with Eleanor Wachtel during the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival about exploring forbidden love and the concept of the gaze through cinema.
Sarah Broom on family bonds and the meaning of home in her award-winning memoir, The Yellow House
The New Orleans-born author spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about generational love and the power of place.
Susan Choi's Trust Exercise is an intense coming-of-age story — with a surprising twist
In conversation with Eleanor Wachtel, the American author spoke about the novel's timely depiction of power dynamics, memory and consent.
Bernardine Evaristo on black British identity and her Booker-winning novel, Girl, Woman, Other
The award-winning British author spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about amplifying the voices of marginalized people through literature.
How Laura Cumming unearthed the truth about her mother's kidnapping, 90 years later
The Edinburgh-born art critic and biographer spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about investigating the real story behind her mother’s disappearance as a child in 1929.
The haunted landscapes of Téa Obreht — from the Balkans to the American West
The Serbian-American writer spoke with Eleanor Wachtel about how death, afterlife and American West mythology inspired her novel, Inland.
The multi-talented Jonathan Miller: a life of creativity, curiosity and comedy
Eleanor Wachtel revisits her 2000 conversation with comedian, satirist, doctor and stage director Jonathan Miller. He died on Nov. 27, 2019.
The enduring appeal of Middlemarch, 200 years after George Eliot's birth
Francine Prose, Rebecca Mead and Nancy Henry reflect on the continued relevance of the Eliot's novel on the bicentenary of her birth.
Martin Amis and Ian Thomson on the legacy of Primo Levi
To mark the centenary of the birth of Primo Levi, the British writers join Eleanor Wachtel to reflect on the late Italian author's exceptional writing about the Holocaust, science and humanity.