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THE GREAT AMERICAN READ
Who Am I?

 

Explore the ways that America’s best-loved novels answer the age-old question, “Who am I?” From life lessons to spiritual journeys, these books help us understand our own identities and find our place in the world.

 

 

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ
Fall Kick Off

 

Join host Meredith Vieira in the search for America’s best-loved novel. The voting is underway, and the competition is heating up. Any book could win.

 

 

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ

Vote for your favorite novel!

 

Our favorite books occupy a special place in our hearts. They help us to exercise our imagination, shift our perspective and open our minds.

 

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ

 

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ

 

This summer, PBS puts a spotlight on the power of reading with The Great American Read, hosted by Meredith Vieira. This eight-part PBS series and community engagement campaign is designed to spark a national conversation about reading, and the books that have inspired, moved and shaped us. The project also explores the ways that our favorite books have shaped our collective imagination – asking what they have to say about our diverse nation, and how these stories affect us as readers.

 

Launching with a two-hour special on May 22 at 8:00 pm, the series hopes to encourage a multi-generational, multi-platform dialogue about literacy in America.

 

 

Just prior to the May 22 launch episode, PBS will reveal the list of 100 novels the public will be voting on throughout the summer. The online voting campaign is the first-ever national vote to choose “America’s Best-Loved Books.” The novels on the top 100 list were chosen by the American public in a specially commissioned, demographically representative national survey conducted by market research firm YouGov.

 

Prominent authors and celebrities such as Margaret Atwood, Juno Díaz, Lauren Graham, John Irving, George R.R. Martin, Devon Kennard and more will lend their voices and share their personal stories and connections to their favorite titles.

 

The series returns in the fall with five one-hour specials designed to take a deeper dive into the books on the list, grouped by theme. Leading literary experts will help us understand how these books and themes relate to our history, culture, psychology and the human condition – and what they mean to us today.

 

By Emilie Howlett


The Great American Read

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ

 

Our favorite books occupy a special place in our hearts. They help us to exercise our imagination, shift our perspective and open our minds.

 

THE GREAT AMERICAN READ

 

 

HIKI NŌ
Episode # 914 – Top Story: The Many Faces of Hope

 

This week’s episode of HIKI NŌ spotlights seven of the most outstanding stories from the winter quarter of the 2017-2018 school year. The seven selected stories also share a common theme: hope. The island residents featured in this show each express personal hopes for themselves, their families and their communities. Each one is on a mission to turn that hope into reality.

 

THE STORIES:

–Students from Hongwanji Mission School on O‘ahu go off-the-air with Billy V, a local media celebrity who opens up about the physical and emotional journey that’s accompanied his cancer treatment. Billy V expresses his hope to recover from cancer and continue his fulfilling life and work.

 

–Students from Wai‘anae High School in West O‘ahu go aboard the Hōkūle‘a voyaging canoe to show us how the current crew is teaching ancient navigation techniques to a new generation. In this story, Master Navigator Nainoa Thompson shares his hope that younger Hawaiians will take up the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s mission of perpetuating traditional voyaging and the spirit of exploration.

 

–Students from Kamehameha Schools Maui Middle School take us to Noho‘ana Farm in Waikapū to meet a man who is preserving his heritage and his culture by restoring his family’s ancient taro farm. He hopes to share his knowledge and instill a sense of kuleana in younger Hawaiians so they can continue the tradition of kalo farming into the future.

 

–Students from Konawaena High School on the Big Island relay the inspirational story of a teacher who hiked the Pacific Crest Trail – from Mexico to Canada – as part of her recovery from the trauma of sexual assault. She hopes this challenge will help her take back control of her body and her life.

 

–Students from Moanalua High School on O‘ahu show us how a high school athlete hopes to overcome his short stature to pursue his dream of playing varsity soccer.

 

–Students from Waiākea High School in Hilo on the Big Island introduce us to a man who’s spreading his motto: “Stay Humble, Pray.” This former prisoner visits Hawai‘i high schools to share his story of drug addiction in the hope of persuading students not to make the mistakes he made.

 

–Students from Maui High School in Kahului introduce us to a family learning to embrace what life brings after their baby is born with the genetic disorder known as Down Syndrome. The Garcias of Pukalani hope their love and devotion will guarantee their daughter’s happiness. And they hope to share their blessings and inspire their neighbors through their family company, Aloha Kettlecorn.

 

This special edition of HIKI NŌ is hosted by two students from Farrington High School on O‘ahu: 9th grader Shaylen Tatupu-Timu and 10th grader Harvey Saucedo.

 

 


GREAT PERFORMANCES AT THE MET
The Exterminating Angel

 

See the American premiere of Thomas Adès’ opera, a surreal fantasy of a dinner party from which the guests can’t escape, based on Luis Buñuel’s 1962 film. Starring John Tomlinson and Alice Coote, with direction from librettist Tom Cairns and conducted by Adès.

 

 

Johnny Cash’s Bitter Tears

 

The story behind Johnny Cash’s 1964 Native American-themed concept album, a collaboration with folk artist Peter Lafarge is told in this documentary, with the participation of Kris Kristofferson, Steve Earle, Emmylou Harris, Nancy Blake, Rhiannon Giddens and others.

 

What Drives KEN BURNS?

 

CEO Message

What Drives Ken Burns?

 

Ken Burns, Photo courtesy of Justin Altman

 

Filmmaker Ken Burns, who’s coming out with an 18-hour Vietnam War film to be shown over 10 evenings this month on PBS Hawai‘i, freely admits that he’s a workaholic; that he’s obsessive in his pursuit of archival material for his films; that his detractors dismiss him as long-winded.

 

And Burns can laugh at himself.

 

As he did when he was being honored as the greatest American documentary filmmaker of his generation. Stepping up to receive a lifetime achievement, he joked that he’d prepared a nine-part response.

 

He had to learn about laughter, since sadness and loss were prevailing childhood themes.

 

Burns, 64, is clear about what drives him and his compulsion to look at the past. It is the death of his mother, Lyla Burns, just before he turned 12. She had suffered from breast cancer for nearly a decade.

 

Burns remembers coming home from school or play every day and telling his ailing mother stories about what had happened, in effect sharing life with her. After she passed away, he recalls watching movies with father, Robert Burns, and seeing him cry, which was something his father didn’t do in other circumstances. That’s when young Burns says he grasped the storytelling power of film.

 

In a short video posted online at creativeplanetnetwork.com, Burns says: “I found myself becoming a documentary filmmaker, trying to tell stories and using American history to tell those stories that I wanted to tell. When you look back at it, the job that I try to do is to wake the dead. And it doesn’t seem too far a leap to understand, from that early decision to be a filmmaker, who I really want to wake up.”

 

From the earliest time that he can remember as a child, he says he knew his beloved mom was sick. He was not close to his father.

 

As a young man, he rejected chasing a Hollywood-type career. He says he innately knew, and was taught at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, that “there’s much more drama in what is and what was, than in anything the human imagination can dream of.”

 

Delivering the commencement address at Stanford University last year, Burns explained that delving into history can lead to personal and professional breakthroughs.

 

“The past often offers an illuminating and clear-headed perspective from which to observe and reconcile the passions of the present moment, just when they threaten to overwhelm us,” he told new graduates.

 

Burns wants this newest film with his creative partner Lynn Novick, about the divisive Vietnam War era, to spur national healing.

 

As he told an interviewer from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee:

 

“We caught something during the Vietnam War – like a virus – and we are still suffering from the effects of that virus today. I’m hoping my film is a bit like a vaccination – that it exposes you to a little bit of the disease to permit you to go past it and heal from it.”

 

I invite you to join me in viewing this new Burns/Novick film series, starting at 8:00 pm, Sunday, September 17, on your TV station, PBS Hawai‘i.

 

A hui hou (until next time),
Leslie Wilcoxʻ signature