About the Show

On the Margin, the book show of Washington D.C., goes inside the covers of today’s most thought-provoking writing. On OTM, authors address the critical issues that shape our society, from race and gender equality to the war on drugs to our political culture.  The show, now in its seventh year at WPFW (89.3 FM), was created by host and producer Josephine Reed.  It offers listeners the opportunity to engage and participate in discussions on the books and the issues raised. (See broadcast schedule.)

On the Margin presents political and historical thinkers from the margins of American letters, but central to progressive thought.  But it is ultimately a book-lovers show... a show geared toward people who appreciate the significance of language from both an artistic and a political perspective.

The program has featured discussions with luminaries ranging from novelists Studs Turkel and Julia Alvarez to historians Taylor Branch and Eric Foner to public figures like Rep. John LewisOTM’s literary guests represent a wide range of genres including poetry (Sonia Sanchez), children’s books (Christopher Curtis, Alice McGill), and political thinkers (Robert Reich, Lewis Lapham).

OTM has a close working relationship with the Hurston-Wright Foundation, a non-profit organization that honors writers from the African diaspora. Hurston-Wright Award nominees and winners are regularly featured on the show. The show also sponsors a book club, which has included roundtable discussions about books written by well-known authors, including Deborah McDowell, James Baldwin, John Edgar Wideman, Paule Marshall, Zora Neele Hurston and Langston Hughes.

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