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Remembering Radical Writer Jessica Mitford

Mitford died of cancer at the age of 78 on Tuesday (July 23). She was considered one of the premiere investigative journalists of her day, a muckraker in the tradition of Sinclair Lewis and John Dos Passos. Her targets included the Famous Writers School, a Midwest correspondence school, and the U.S. penal system ("Kind and Usual Punishment: The Prison Business"). Mitford's most recent book, "The American Way of Birth" (1992), declares that doctors perform too many C-Sections and de-legitimize midwifery. Near her death, Mitford was working on a revision of her most acclaimed work, "The American Way Of Death" (1963), which was a criticism of the American funeral industry. (ORIGINALLY BROADCAST 5/16/89)

21:19

Other segments from the episode on July 26, 1996

Fresh Air with Terry Gross, July 26, 1996: Interview with Isabel Allende; Review of the album "The Complete Aladdin Recordings of Lester Young"; Obituary for Jessica Mitford.

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