Mind Body Health & Politics host Dr. Richard L. Miller will interview Michael Krasny about his new book, Let There Be Laughter, A Treasury of Great Jewish Humor and What It All Means.
“Yes this is a joke book. It has in it some of the greatest Jewish jokes of all time. But it is much more. Embedded in the jokes and folklore and tales and anecdotes is the history of a people, a tribe, their value system and their rich ongoing heritage. It is a work of cultural anthropology, a wide portal to understanding Jewish identity and an immersion into the hilarity, joy and power of laughter. So enjoy, learn and, above all, laugh!”
– Michael Krasny, San Francisco, California, October 2016
About Dr. Michael Krasny, PhD
Dr. Krasny is host of the award winning KQED FORUM, a program discussing news and public affairs, current events, culture, health, business and technology. FORUM can be heard daily on Northern California’s public radio station, KQED, as well as on Sirius/XM Satellite with National Public Radio, Comcast digital cable, and on the Internet as a podcast on iTunes. He has interviewed a wide range of major political and cultural figures. He is also a veteran interviewer for the nationally broadcast City Arts and Lectures series. Focus Magazine named him Best Bay Area Talk Show Host, and he was selected Best Talk Host and Best Interviewer by the editorial staff of San Francisco Weekly, as well as in their annual reader’s poll.
“Krasny’s erudition and talent have no boundaries. What he has brought via the spoken word and the entertainment it provides now comes via the written word. It is a gift.”
– Robert Redford
Dr. Krasny’s abilities and reputation as one of the world’s finest interviewers are enhanced by his creative work as an author and educator. A former regular contributor to Mother Jones magazine, Dr. Krasny has published a great deal of fiction, literary criticism and political commentary. He is the author of Off Mike: A Memoir of Talk Radio and Literary Life (Stanford University Press) which was on both The San Francisco Chronicle and The Marin Independent Journal best-seller lists, Sound Ideas (with Maggie Sokolik McGraw-Hill) and Let There Be Laughter (Harper Collins). He also released a twenty-four lecture series DVD, audio and book on “Short Story Masterpieces” for The Teaching Company, and is the author of Spiritual Envy (New World Press), which was also on the best-seller lists in The San Francisco Chronicle and the Marin Independent Journal.
“Michael Krasny sets the standard by which all public affairs and cultural radio is measured.”
– Michael Chabon
A professor of English at San Francisco State University, he has been Visiting Professor at the University of San Francisco, Adjunct Professor at the University of California San Francisco and taught in Continuing Education at Stanford University, as well as being an Associate of the San Francisco Urban Institute. He coordinated the Nexa Dissemination Program in Science and Humanities under the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Carnegie Foundation, taught in the Fulbright Institutes for the National Fulbright Foundation, conducted seminars at Esalen Institute, lectured to the San Francisco Psychoanalytic Institute and aboard the Royal Odyssey Cruise Line. In 2007, he was honored with an Award of Excellence from the National Association of Humanities Educators.
“Michael Krasny is the best interviewer on all things cultural.”
– Amy Tan
Dr. Krasny received his BA (Cum Laude) and MA degrees from Ohio University, where he received the senior class award for leadership and scholarship, and where he is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, and he holds a PhD degree from The University of Wisconsin. He lives in Marin County, north of San Francisco, with his wife, Leslie, who is a biochemist and attorney. They have two daughters.
In the late 1970s, Krasny hosted a weekly Marin County talk show called “Beyond the Hot Tub” on low-power rock radio station KTIM-FM. He went on to host a popular radio program on KGO (AM) from 1984 to December 1992. He became the host of Forum in 1993, expanding the focus of the program to more national themes.
Krasny is a professor of English at San Francisco State University where he has taught primarily American literature since 1970. He received his B.A. cum laude in 1966 and M.A. in 1967 from Ohio University, where he attended the Honors College and became a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He holds a Ph.D. in 20th century American literature from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
Krasny is a widely published scholar, critic and fiction writer. He has also worked widely as a facilitator and host in the corporate sector and as a moderator for nonprofit events.