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Actress and Author Carrie Fisher

Fisher wrote the screenplay for the film adaptation of her novel, Postcards From the Edge, directed by Mike Nichols, and starring Meryl Streep and Shirley McLaine. Best known for her role as Princess Leia in the Star Wars trilogy, Fisher also has a new novel called, Surrender the Pink. She is the daughter of Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher.


Novelist William Styron and His New "Memoir of Madness"

In 1985, novelist William Styron fell into a deep depression. He documented the years he was incapacitated by the illness, and how he coped, in his new book, Darkness Visible. Looking back at his early writing, Styron believes depression informed his novels, like The Confessions of Nat Turner and Sophie's Choice.


The Astounding Memory of Three Exiled Writers

Commentator Maureen Corrigan talks about her admiration of Erich Auerbach, Leon Trotsky, and Fernand Braudel, writers who were somehow able to write expansive, well-researched books while in prison or exile -- without notes or access to other texts and documents.


Actor and Director Dennis Hopper

Hopper made his film debut in Rebel Without a Cause, and played Frank in Blue Velvet. He directed Easy Rider and the new film The Hot Spot, which stars Don Johnson. Before his recent comeback, he developed a drug problem, which he's since kicked.


J.M. Coetzee Hits Hard Again

Book critic John Leonard reviews the South African author's new epistolary novel, which uses cancer as a metaphor for apartheid. Leonard says it's baffling with a terrible beauty, that spares no one -- including blacks and white liberals.


A Prisoner Remembers His Criminal Past

James Fogle was a drug addict who, along with others, robbed drugstores to feed his habit. The film Drugstore Cowboy is based on his autobiographical novel of the same name; the book wasn't yet published at the time of production. It's now in stores. Fogle is currently serving a prison sentence, and joins Fresh Air by telephone.


The Psychological Trauma of War Veterans

Psychiatric-social worker Raymond M. Scurfield is the Director of the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Program at the American Lake V.A. Center in Washington State. He served in Vietnam, treating psychiatric casualties. He talks about the typical problems found in combat, the dilemma of sending G.I.'s back into battle, and he speculates on the difficulties G.I.s will face in the Gulf.


A Historical Look at Freud's First Failure

Critic Maureen Corrigan reviews "Freud, Dora, and Vienna 1900," by historian Hannah S. Decker. It's an account of Sigmund Freud's work with his patient Dora -- a case which has often been viewed and critiqued through the lens of contemporary feminist scholarship.


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