About the Program
This week on After Words journalist Nicholas Basbanes, a columnist for Fine Books & Collections magazine, on his latest study of literary culture, "Every Book Its Reader: The Power of the Printed Word to Stir the World." He attempts to discover how historical figures formed their ideas and opinions by tracking down the books that influenced them. Mr. Basbanes researches the reading habits of: John Locke, Isaac Newton, John Adams, Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, Henry James, Thomas Edison, Helen Keller, and Adolf Hitler, among others. Mr. Basbanes also talks to well-known readers of our time including: historian David McCullough, literary critic Harold Bloom, and child psychologist Robert Coles. He is interviewed by David Kipen, Director of Literature for the National Endowment for the Arts and a former book critic for the San Francisco Chronicle.