This week on NOW:
The popularity of actor Hal Holbrook's long-running one man show about
Mark Twain is sustained by the universal relevance of Twain's candid
observations on politics, culture, race, and the world. After 50 years
of getting inside the mind of this extraordinary humorist and social
critic, what can Holbrook's experience tell us about the unique nature
of the challenges facing America today such as war, religious
fanaticism, race, and censorship? Bill Moyers interviews Holbrook,
probing his experience with bigotry and censorship while playing Twain
and examining why Twain's work is particularly relevant in a
post-September 11th world. "We don't have truth delivered to us very
often, especially in this very commercialized world we live in," says
Holbrook. "Mark Twain cuts right straight through that with a knife."
Bill Moyers talks to Richard Rodgriguez, one of the country's most
intriguing and controversial writers on how the mixing of races and
cultures has influenced his life, his work and American culture. "We
have these categories: white, black, and now this new, ludicrous
category that Richard Nixon invented for me, Hispanic. In 1972, I
became Hispanic," says Rodriguez, "Until then, I was a Mexican-American.
And suddenly, I see myself over 30 years, in concert with
Cuban-Americans, Puerto Ricans, Colombians." Rodriguez's books include
HUNGER OF MEMORY: THE EDUCATION OF RICHARD RODRIGUEZ and the Pulitzer
Prize Runner-up DAYS OF OBLIGATION: AN ARGUMENT WITH MY MEXICAN FATHER.
He talks to Moyers about his book BROWN: THE LAST DISCOVERY OF AMERICA,
where he argues that America has been brown since its inception and
reflects on how Hispanics are being Americanized at the same rate that
America is being Latinized.