Writer Harry Crews had a hard life and didn't make it any easier for the characters in his novels. He died Wednesday at age 76. Fresh Air remembers the Southern novelist with excerpts from a 1988 interview.
New York Times Science Correspondent Sheryl Gay Stolberg talks about the comeback of the drug Thalidomide. In the 1960s the drug was banned worldwide after it produced a generation of babies with missing and stunted limbs. But it is now showing promise in treating leprosy and several other ailments including AIDS. (Interview by Barbara Bogaev)
The book Geek Love is about carnival performers who intentionally take drugs during pregnancy in order to give birth to deformed children. Author Katherine Dunn says she used deformity as a metaphor to make a larger point about body image and disability.
Ricky Jay, one of the world's great sleight-of-hand artists, a scholar of the unusual, curator of the Mulholland Library of Conjuring and the Allied Arts, an actor and author of Learned Pigs and Fireproof Women.