Enjoy a lively introduction to the great heroes of Medieval literature. Kat Tracy (Longwood University) reacquaints us with the popular characters—like Gawain, Robin Hood, and Richard the Lionheart—and the lesser-known heroes, like Hengist and Horsa and Havelok the Dane! Also featured: Dan Brown, the author of the wildly popular thriller The Da Vinci Code, has released his newest book, Inferno, which draws from Dante’s masterpiece Inferno. Husband and wife scholars Mark Parker (James Madison University) and Deborah Parker (University of Virginia) have come out with a companion book, Inferno Revealed: From Dante to Dan Brown, to provide readers of Brown’s Inferno with an engaging introduction to Dante and his world.

Later in the show: When Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray was first published in 1891, it was a substantially altered version of Wilde’s original text. Material considered scandalous for its day had been cut out. Nicholas Frankel (Virginia Commonwealth University) is the editor of a new edition that restores Oscar Wilde’s famous novel to its original form—a form that has never before been published. Frankel asserts that this is the version Wilde would have wanted us to read today. Also featured: During the Cold War era, screenwriters, playwrights, and actors who criticized American foreign policy were brought into hearings chaired by Senator Joseph McCarthy and then often blacklisted. Andrew Falk (Christopher Newport University) says, though silenced back home, many of these artists had successful careers in Europe and became cultural ambassadors for the United States.

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