January 13, 2003

One hundred years ago, most Americans condemned cremation. Now, one quarter of us choose to be cremated. Author Stephen Prothero talks with Todd about the history of cremation in America. They discuss how cremation contributes to religious and ritual diversity and provides an important avenue for individual expression. Prothera's book is "Purified By Fire: A History of Cremation in America".

The 200 year old art form of rhyming slang has been updated for this century in a new dictionary. John Ayto,the editor of the Oxford Dictionary of Rhyming Slang, explains the meaning of rhyming slang and its cockney origins. He and Todd also discuss how rhyming slang is used and why.

Lev Raphael,our book reviewer returns. He and Todd discuss three new novels; Six Easy Pieces by Walter Mosely, The Monk by Matthew Gregory Lewis and Paris 1919 by Margaret MacMillan. Raphael is an author and mystery columnist.