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51% Show #1303

Kara Janeczko

Alas, we’re into the thick of it… summer that is. For some this means it’s a time for fishing, from a pier or a boat, on a pond or out at sea. Yet for one woman in a seaside community, fishing season is year round as she practices a 2,000-year-old art form. Then we’ll turn to a scientist/author who searches all realms to tackle some big questions, and it doesn’t matter if it’s summer, spring, winter or fall.  Also on this week’s 51%, we’ll take a look at a female first for the U.S. Navy.

Credit Kara Janeczko
Blue Fish tails, black ink on Egyptian Papyrus

Gyotaku is the Japanese art of making prints by applying inks to dead fish and then rubbing them with silks, and it’s thought to have originated in the fish markets. These prints were a simple way to convey the fish of the day. There is also a legend that a Japanese emperor wanted to preserve the image of a beautiful fish he caught before serving it at a banquet, so he devised this art form as a way to forever keep an image of his fish. Jenny Bovey and her husband have been making these one-of-a-kind prints for more than 25 years.  She’s one of the few full time practitioners of the 2,000 year old Japanese art form –on Main Street in the seaside community of Chatham, Massachusetts. Kara Janeczko reports.  

Jenny Bovey and her husband Andrew run Blue Water Fish Rubbings on Main Street in Chatham, Massachusetts. Each hand made Gyotaku print comes from a real fish.

Educated as a scientist, BarbaraEhrenreich is an award-winning and best-selling author, journalist, activist, and advocate for social justice. Her new book, Living with a Wild God: A Nonbeliever's Search for the Truth about Everything, is her first memoir. She recounts her quest, beginning in childhood, to find the truth about the universe and everything else. The book tackles the big questions that we face in a highly personal manner. 51%’s Joe Donahue speaks with Ehrenrich about her quest.  

All around the country, summer reading lists will feature familiar authors of the literary canon. In recent decades, that canon has come to include a small group of black writers. One scholar argues that it’s time to expand that group starting with the addition of Harlem writer Ann Petry. Allison Quantz has the story.  

On my first show, you heard about a female first at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. President Obama, during his graduation speech, pointed out that the year marked the service academy’s first all-female command team.

And that’s our show for this week. Thanks to Katie Britton for production assistance.  Our executive producer is Dr. Alan Chartock. Our theme music is Glow in the Dark by Kevin Bartlett. This show is a national production of Northeast Public Radio. 

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