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35:25

'You Can't Be This Furry' And Other Life Lessons From Gary Shteyngart.

In Little Failure, the novelist recounts his emigration from the USSR to the U.S. when he was 7. For the first few years, he says, he would sit alone in the school cafeteria, talking to himself in Russian "in this gigantic fur hat and fur coat." It wasn't long before a teacher advised, "Children won't play with you if you have that much fur on."

Originally aired Jan. 7, 2014.

50:27

'You Can't Be This Furry' And Other Life Lessons From Gary Shteyngart.

In Little Failure, the novelist recounts his emigration from the USSR to the U.S. when he was 7. For the first few years, he says, he would sit alone in the school cafeteria, talking to himself in Russian "in this gigantic fur hat and fur coat." It wasn't long before a teacher advised, "Children won't play with you if you have that much fur on."

05:36

Hungry Hearts And Family Matters In 'Middlesteins.'

Jami Attenberg's black comedy about the fallout of one woman's food addiction is a tough but affecting story about family members putting up with each other. Critic Maureen Corrigan says the novel's fragmented narration and jumpy timeline add to its emotional punch.

44:21

Regina Spektor: On Growing Up A 'Soviet Kid.'

Spektor spent the first nine years of her life in the Soviet Union, where she and her family faced discrimination as Jews. She talks about Russia and her new album, What We Saw From the Cheap Seats, with Terry Gross.

21:37

Sarah Silverman: Turning Ignorance Into Comedy.

Comedian Sarah Silverman is known for delivering closely observed social commentary in a disarming, politically incorrect style. She tells stories about her childhood and her career in a new memoir, The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption and Pee.

20:04

Comedian Carol Leifer Looks In The Mirror.

Comedian Carol Leifer has written for Seinfeld, The Larry Sanders Show, The Ellen Show, and Saturday Night Live. She talks to Fresh Air about her career in comedy, her coming out story, and her memoir, When You Lie About Your Age, The Terrorists Win.

This interview was first broadcast on April 23, 2009.

21:10

Will The Real Woody Allen Please Stand Up?

Woody Allen may have played his share of mousy intellectuals in his films, but he says that growing up, he was always "picked first for the team." On the occasion of his 40th movie, Whatever Works, Allen joins Terry Gross to talk about his inspiration and life behind the lens.

This interview was first broadcast on June 15, 2009.

21:45

Philip Roth Discusses His Latest Accolade

Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Philip Roth has been a favorite of readers since his memoir Goodbye, Columbus emerged to help define the culture of postwar America. Now the Library of America is releasing Roth's books — a rare step for a living author.

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