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The Lifespan of a Fact

A war is staged in the 123 pages of “The Lifespan of a Fact” (W.W. Norton/ 2012). On the one side, the author John D'Agata defends the merits of artistic license, a certain right for the creator to embellish facts. On the other side, Jim Fingal works as a fact checker, meticulously documenting the inaccuracies in the author's writing. What are we looking for when we go after the truth? And does art or information serve as the better path towards reaching it? Host Frank Stasio talks about memory, emotion and truth with John D’Agata and Jim Fingal, the writers of “The Lifespan of a Fact”; and Dr. Alison Adcock, assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke University.

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
Shawn Wen joined the staff of The State of Things in March 2012 and served as associate producer until February 2014.
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