Friday, December 19, 2008

Darkness at Noon

While most of the country (and world for that matter) will no doubt be tuning in Saturday afternoon for the drama, tradition, and pageantry of The Eagle Bank Bowl ( the countdown's on), the lineup for this week's NARN First Team show also holds promise for entertainment gold.

To fun will kick off at 11am when Omar Ansari from Surly Brewing Company joins us live in studio to talk beer. It's been nearly two years since we last had Omar on and we'll be getting the run down on the latest and greatest news from Surly, which has quickly grown to be one of the most popular micro breweries in the Twin Cities. Any beer fan would love to see a couple of four-packs of Surly under the tree this year (yes, I'm looking at you Santa).

At noon, we will interview Jonathan Brent author of Inside the Stalin Archives: Discovering the New Russia:

To most Americans, Russia remains as enigmatic today as it was during the Iron Curtain era. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the country had an opportunity to face its tortured past. In Inside the Stalin Archives, Jonathan Brent asks, why didn't this happen? Why are the anti-Semitic Protocols of Zion sold openly in the lobby of the State Duma? Why are archivists under surveillance and phones still tapped? Why does Stalin, a man responsible for the deaths of millions of his own people, remain popular enough to appear on boxes of chocolate sold in Moscow's airport?

Brent draws on fifteen years of unprecedented access to high-level Soviet Archives to answer these questions. He shows us a Russia where, in 1992, used toothbrushes were sold on the sidewalks, while now shops are filled with luxury goods and the streets are jammed with Mercedes. Stalin's specter hovers throughout, and in the book's crescendo Brent takes us deep into the dictator's personal papers to glimpse the dark heart of the new Russia. Both cultural history and personal memoir, Inside the Stalin Archives is a deeply felt and vivid portrait of Russia in the twenty-first century.


We will attempt to unravel the riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma that is modern Russia with Jonathan Brent and try to understand why the shadow of Stalin still darkens the Russian psyche.

As always you can join the conversation by ringing us at 651-289-4488. If you have questions for Omar or Jonathan, we encourage you to call in.

Those of you who can't peel your eyeballs away from the epic Eagle Bank Bowl can always turn down the sound and listen to the show. In fact, you can tune in to eight hours of the best in local conservative talk radio this Saturday from 9am-5pm (David Strom and the NARN) at 1280 on the local AM dial or on the internet stream.

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