The One and Only Sarah Vowell Takes on the Puritans

Tulsa, Oklahoma – "The Wordy Shipmates," the latest book from longtime public-radio contributor and bestselling writer Sarah Vowell, is just out in paperback. On this day-before-Thanksgiving edition of our program, we listen back to an interview we did with Vowell about a year ago, when this book had first been published in hardcover. Vowell's typically witty and historically compelling account is a detailed profile of the Puritans --- who were actually, as Vowell points out, a highly literate, deeply principled, and surprisingly feisty people. As one critic, in the pages in of The Washington Post, has noted: "What makes 'The Wordy Shipmates' float is not so much its arguments as its voice. Most writing on the Puritans is as dour as the Puritans themselves. Vowell has fun with them, and in the process, she helps us take seriously both their lives and their legacy." Also on today's show, our commentator Barry Friedman has some (surprisingly?) nice things to say about the federal government.