Tying the ‘Not’?: Saying I Do Before Iraq

March 29, 2007

Producer: Rebecca Sheir  (07:56)

Review by Traci Tong for PRX (March 20, 2007)

“Absolutely loved listening to this story told in the “When Harry Met Sally” style.

I kept envisioning this couple sitting on the couch talking to the camera about their experience of having their wedding day pushed up because of military demands.

There are appropriate and fun music interludes to help this story along and it only makes it cuter.

I only ask that we hear a follow-up of this charming coulple when Greg returns from his duty in Baghdad.”



A Conversation with Shimon Peres

March 27, 2007

Producer: WEOS (58:57)

Review by Chris Chambers for PRX

Is it possible to broadcast an hour long live speech followed by a Q&A session? My instinct would be to say no not really. However, I was fascinated with this piece. I was absorbed from beginning to end. Shimon Peres is a wonderful speaker. Thoughtful, precise and engaging. I was surprised. I’ve always thought of him as lacking charisma and of being the ‘also man’ – even though he’s been around longer than any other Israeli politician and has held practically every important post in the government there. One wonders though, if someone of his sensibilities (as it comes across here anyway)and his stature isn’t able to bring peace to the region, then who can?
This is a programme of two halves. The first half an hour is a speech. His main thrust is that the economy and business are the most important aspects of a society. “Governments have budgets and not money,” he says cynically. Modernising is important and that the current clashes are with those who’re afraid of losing their way of life.
Also, the questions put to him were thoughtful and intelligent. This can sometimes be the trouble with Q&As. Questions can be trite and boring.
There are some very powerful moments especially when he describes as prime minister seeing the first suicide bombing of a bus in Jerusalem and the chants of traitor directed to him fom his own people.
The only problem with this is that of course it is one sided. Israel comes across as a country that is just defending itself from outside aggression and is reacting to circumstance. Isn’t it a bit more complicated than that!
However, pushing that aside, it’s worth listening to just to hear the views of a man steeped in history.



Listen: Jason Peacemaker

March 10, 2007

from PRX 

Producer: Teresa Goff (5 mins)

PRX Description:

“According to a report by the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research, the number of Canadians living with HIV/AIDS increased 40 per cent between 1996 and 2002.
One group is over-represented in those statistics: aboriginal people.
First Nations people are at increased risk for HIV infections for several reasons. Social, economic, and behavioural factors such as poverty, substance use, including injection drug use, sexually transmitted diseases, and limited access to health services, have increased their vulnerability.
Jason Peacemaker tells his own personal story about HIV and addiction”


PRX Review: Ghada Kanafani, Palestinian Poet in Exile

March 9, 2007

Producer:  Claudia Cragg (20:00)

Reviewed by David Swatling for PRX (March 4, 2007)

“Some strong emotion surfaces in this straightforward interview with exiled Palestinian poet Ghada Kanafani. Born in Lebanon in 1948 – the year creation of the state of Israel displaced her family; grew up reading Arabic poetry which brought tears to her eyes; wrote her first poem in 1967 – “the end of everything,” she says.

“I’m not the one who’s suffering,” she says. But her deep sighs and moving description of entire lives spent in refugee camps tell another story. As does the heartfelt reading of her poem at the end of the interview.

The first time I listened to this with my professional radio ears, I was put off by a shakey start and off-miked questions which sometimes interrupted the poet. But I was drawn into her story and when I listened again, these technical flaws seemed less important. I would still prefer a more artful framework for this thoughtful poet’s words and ideas. But they come through in the interview anyway, so perhaps I’m being too critical.

Might be a strong topical offering for April Poetry Month.”