Mike & Halle Brady: Life in Vladivostok, Russia

Click here to begin listening

Vladivostok, Russia, at the very eastern end of Siberia, is a city of about 800,000 people. It is the same distance north of the equator as is central Oregon and Rome, Italy. It’s close to the border of China and North Korea. This city was closed to everyone, including Russians, until the early 1990s. Halle Brady and Mike Brady, formerly of Potter Valley, California, spent two years teaching in Vladivostok and, in this program, we shared their experiences there.

Mike Brady recommends “Lenin’s Tomb,” by David Remnick. Halle Brady recommends “Gates of November,” by Chaim Potok.

Originally Broadcast: July 3, 1998

Del Castillo, Dennis & Lu, Mercedes: Peruvian Environmental Issues

Click here to begin listening

In this edition of Radio Curious, we visit Dennis del Castillo and Mercedes Lu, two environmental activists from Peru. I met with them in Lima, Peru on February 5th, 1998. Dennis del Castillo, who holds a Ph.D. from Mississippi State University in soil science and in this interview describes contemporary environmental problems in the Peruvian Amazon Basin. In the second half of this program we visit with Mercedes Lu, a scientific technician, who described some of the problems resulting from copper mining that occurs along the coast of southern Peru. We began our conversation when I asked Dennis del Castillo to describe the potential of the Peruvian Amazon Basin.

Dennis del Castillo recommends “The Losing Ground,” by Erik P. Eckholm.

Originally Broadcast: April 3, 1998

Luke, Gregorio: Mexican Culture in the United States

Click here to begin listening

The governments of most countries in the world send an ambassador to other countries to talk about and promote what their country is like and carry on political affairs between the two countries. These ambassadors often have assistants that are called “cultural attaches”. They present the culture, the folklore and the history from the country where they’re from and the country where they are. In this program from the archives of Radio Curious, recorded in 1997, we visit with Gregorio Luke, who then was the counsel for cultural affairs for Mexico. He spent 8 ½ years in Washington DC, and at the time this program was recorded he had been working at the Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles for eighteen months.

Gregorio Luke recommends “The Letters of Vincent Van Gogh,” by Vincent Van Gogh.

Originally Broadcast: November 7, 1997

Blincoe, Bob: The Kurdish People

Click here to begin listening

The word millet is a term from the Ottoman Empire that ruled parts of Europe Central to the Near East from 1430 to 1921 and means “a recognized people or cultural group who have no homeland.” Millet now applies to the Kurdish people, who live in the Zagros Mountains, where the borders of eastern Turkey, northern Iraq, and northwestern Iran converge. Starting with Gulf War of 1991, 25 million Kurdish people live homeless and stateless in the Zagros Mountains. They are subject to frequent attacks from the Turks and the Iraqis. Bob Blincoe, a Presbyterian minister, lived and worked as a community organizer among the Kurds in the Zagros Mountains for five and one-half years until the Fall of 1996. At first he spoke Arabic, so he wouldn’t stand out as someone working with a suspect minority. He quickly learned Kurdish and has many interesting stories to share.

Bob Blincoe recommends “A Peace to End All Peace: The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern World,” by David Fromkin.

Originally Broadcast: May 14, 1997

Knight, M. Wayne: Rural American Artist in Cambodia

Click here to begin listening

Wayne Knight, an artist based in Mendocino County, California with over 40 years of experience, traveled very little before he found himself in Phnom Phen, Cambodia in 1995 and 1996. He spent just under a year there, looking, seeing, and painting scenes that previously were beyond his imagination. Wayne Knight also worked with the Cambodian Defenders’ Project in developing computer access to their legal resources in Cambodia. His experience verified his security and, in many ways, enhanced his continuing growth as an artist. Other programs you may enjoy are with Daniel Ellsberg discussing the Pentagon Papers and Vietman, and with Linda Kremer, Esq., a Marin County, California, public defender who took a leave of absence to direct the Cambodian Defenders Project. They both may be found on this website.

Wayne Knight recommends “Living My Life,” by Emma Goldman.

Originally Broadcast: April 2, 1997

Kremer, Linda: The Legal Defense of Jailed Cambodians

Click here to begin listening

Attorney Linda Kremer, a Public Defender in Marin County, California, worked for thirteen months in Phnom Phen, Cambodia, in 1996 and 1997 as Director of the Cambodian Defenders’ Project. The Cambodian Defenders’ Project recruits and trains Khmer men and women to serve as Public Defenders in the criminal courts of Cambodia. Cambodian law requires that no person be detained in excess of 48 hours without being charged with a crime or be held without trial from longer than six months. In practice, these rights are rarely honored. Without legal defense, those is prison are powerless to request compliance. Other programs you may enjoy are with Daniel Ellsberg discussing the Pentagon Papers and Vietman, and with Wayne Knight, a Mendocino County artist who was also associated with the Cambodian Defenders Project. They both may be found on this website.

Linda Kremer recommends “Spontaneous Healing” & “Natural Healing,” both by Andrew While.

Originally Broadcast: March 26, 1997

Potok, Chaim: Escaping Communism

Click here to begin listening

Chaim Potok, the author of “The Chosen,” “The Gift of Asher Lev,”Davida’s Heart,” and many other novels, chronicled the life of a Russian Jewish family in the non-fictions story, “The Gates of November.” This true story of the Slapeck family, Solomon Slapek, his son Valodya, and daughter-in-law Masha, spans 100 years. Beginning with Solomon’s childhood at turn of the 20th century, his escape to America and return to Russia, it eventually describes Valodya and Masha’s life after they apply for an exit visa to leave Russia in 1968, in order to emigrate to Israel. Chaim Potok died July 23, 2002, at his suburban Philadelphia home of brain cancer at the age of 73.

The book Chaim Potok recommends is “The English Patient,” by Michael Ondaatje.

This program was Originally Broadcast: January 8, 1997

Hilario, Manenima: Born into the Stone Age

Click here to begin listening

A generally accepted theory about human migration tells us that people crossed the landmass that once connected Siberia to Alaska. Some of those people continued walking south and many generations later settled on the western edge of the Amazon Basin in South America in what is now eastern Peru. One of those groups is called Shapibo. Manenima Hilario, who is now 26 yeas old, was born Shapibo, into his tribe which lived in the Stone Age traditional fashion. At age 11, he went to secondary school in the Hispanic Amazon jungle town of Pucallpa. Later, from Lima, Peru he found his way to Taylor, Texas, and on to Sonoma State University, in Northern CA, where he graduated in June of 1997. Since that time he was enrolled at Stanford University to work on his Ph.D.

Manenima Hilario recommends the biography of General Colin Powell.

Originally Broadcast: January 22, 1997

Lev, Daniel: A Story of Chanukah

Click here to begin listening

Every year on the 25th day of the Hebrew month of Kislev, which falls four days before the new moon closest to the winter solstice, the eight day holiday of Chanukah, celebrated worldwide, begins. Before the days of radio and television a person called a magid traveled from town to town, visiting Jewish people and Jewish families. Daniel Lev is a modern day magid who sometimes visits Ukiah and Willits to teach and pass along Jewish tradition through stories, songs, and spiritual practice. This program was originally broadcast in December 1996, and joined these archives the day Daniel Lev became a rabbi in 2005.

Daniel Lev recommends the Torah.

Originally Broadcast: December 14, 1996

Sarmiento,Domingo & Lewis, Daniel: An Argentine President

Click here to begin listening

Domingo Sarmiento, a teacher and later President of the Republic of Argentina, spent several years traveling in Europe and the United States in the mid-19th Century. He spent six weeks in the US in the fall of 1847 and later published his account of this visit, selectively interpreting what he saw and experienced to conform to his ideas. In this archive edition of Radio Curious, I visit with Domingo Sarmiento in the person of Professor Daniel Lewis, a scholar-presenter in the 1996 Democracy in America Chautauqua. I met with Domingo Sarmiento during a break in the Chautauqua programming in Ukiah, California, and asked him what he saw the future of the American Union to be, from his perspective in 1843.

Domingo Sarmiento recommends any book by James Fenimore Cooper. Daniel Lewis recommends “The Invention of Argentina,” by Nicolas Shumway.

Originally Broadcast: July 27, 1996