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TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. This election has not only been a political contest, it's been a stress test of our election system and how it holds up in a divisive time, a time of disinformation and a time when the president was unwilling to say that he'd accept the vote if he lost and peacefully hand over power. The election that could break America is how my guest, Barton Gellman, described it in an article published in the November issue of The Atlantic.

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Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross.

Nineteen sixty eight was a year of upheaval in America. Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy had been assassinated, and the country was embroiled in protests over the war in Vietnam.

That summer, several prominent anti-war activists, including Abbie Hoffman and Tom Hayden, were accused of crossing state lines and conspiring to start a riot at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. The trial that followed transfixed the nation.

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Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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Frederick Wiseman's new documentary, City Hall, was shot in 2018 and 2019, which means that it already plays like a pre-COVID-19 time capsule.

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As a young man, Joe Biden was fixated on a singular goal: "On his first date with his future wife, he told her mother that he wanted to grow up to be president," New Yorker writer Evan Osnos says.

Osnos, who writes about the Democratic presidential candidate in his new book, Joe Biden: The Life, the Run, and What Matters Now, notes that the 2020 election represents Biden's third bid for the presidency.

When COVID-19 forced New York City into lockdown in March, Harlem chef and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson had a choice: stay or go. Born in Ethiopia and raised by adoptive parents in Sweden, Samuelsson says leaving the city during the pandemic "would be the easier way out."

But he decided to stay.

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm TV critic David Bianculli.

NPR legal correspondent Nina Totenberg has spent decades covering major shifts in the Supreme Court and breaking major stories about the court. Watching Judge Amy Coney Barrett's Senate confirmation hearings, Totenberg was struck by the nominee's reticence.

"There was almost nothing she was willing to say about anything," Totenberg says. "Amy Coney Barrett takes the crown for unresponsiveness."

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Copyright 2020 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies, in today for Terry Gross.

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Although it's not as widely known in the U.S. as his adventure tales like White Fang and The Call of the Wild, Martin Eden is now regarded as one of Jack London's greatest achievements.

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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A few years ago, South African documentary filmmaker Craig Foster felt burnt out from years of working on arduous nature films. Needing a reset, he returned to the underwater kelp forests off the southwest tip of Cape Town.

"My earliest memories, my deepest and most powerful memories were of this incredible coast and diving in what I call 'my magical childhood forest,' " Foster says. "It is one of the greatest ecosystems on this planet."

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