Event Audio

To listen to an audio recording of a previous Library special event, click the icon. The audio file will launch the media player on your computer.

The most recent recording displays at the top. The Library offers recordings only with the permission of the presenter. Please allow 7-10 days for the recording to be posted.

  • The Library and American Public Square continue their series of mannerly discussions of polarizing local issues, examining the future of Kansas City’s fledgling streetcar service. Where to head next? Who should pay?
    A Streetcar Named …
    Wednesday, January 20, 2016
    Plaza Branch

    The Library, in partnership with American Public Square, launches a series of discussions of polarizing local issues – minus the incivility and insults that all too often feed polarity.

    Kansas City’s new streetcar line will run from the River Market through downtown and to on Crown Center. Where should it go in the future? North to KCI? South to Brookside and Waldo? East? Is this the future for public transit in the city? If so, who pays for it?

    Co-presented by American Public Square.

  • Alexandra Fuller, the author of two acclaimed books on growing up in southern Africa and her colorful, often dysfunctional parents, discusses her third memoir – about divorce, relocation to the U.S., and an enduring connection to the land she left behind.
    Leaving Before The Rains Come - Alexandra Fuller
    Tuesday, January 12, 2016
    Plaza Branch

    On their first date, a canoe outing in southern Africa, where they both lived, Alexandra Fuller and husband-to-be Charlie Ross were charged by an elephant. An unflustered safari leader, he held his ground. She came away impressed.

    Their marriage of 20 years brought a move to America and produced three children, but it ultimately fell apart. Fuller, the author of two acclaimed, searingly honest books about her upbringing in Rhodesia and her colorful, often dysfunctional parents, discusses her third memoir – about the divorce, about her relocation to the U.S., and about her enduring connection to Africa and all she left behind there.

  • In a discussion of their new book, University of Kansas professors William Elliott III and Melinda Lewis examine the dilemma facing today’s college graduates: They’re leaving school in deep, crippling debt.
    The Real College Debt Crisis: How Student Borrowing Threatens Financial Well-Being and Erodes the American Dream
    Thursday, January 7, 2016
    Central Library

    College graduates last May held an unenviable distinction: They left school deeper in debt than any class before them. Those who’d taken out student loans owed, on average, a little over $35,000, more than doubling the amount of two decades earlier.

    In a discussion of their new book, William Elliott III and Melinda Lewis examine the dilemma of young people beginning their careers with a negative net worth. The two University of Kansas professors call, in part, for states and the federal government to establish savings accounts for students during their childhood rather than awarding thousands of dollars at the end of high school – a move they say would promote dramatically different behavior and saving strategies for families.

  • Johnson County, Kansas, blogger and best-selling author Jen Mann gives the holiday season her own inimitable spin in a discussion of her new book. Hint: It’s not all warm and sugary (but it’s hilarious).
    Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat - Jen Mann
    Wednesday, December 9, 2015
    Central Library

    As Jen Mann notes, her nationally popular blog is called "People I Want to Punch in the Throat" and not "Rainbows and Unicorns." So it’s no surprise that her take on Christmas isn’t all warm and sugary. But it’s drop-dead hilarious.

    The suburban Johnson County, Kansas, wife, mother, and best-selling writer gives the holiday season her inimitable spin in a discussion of her new book Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Yuletide Yahoos, Ho-Ho-Humblebraggers and Other Seasonal Scourges.

  • Kansas-reared Robert Day, author of the modern western classic The Last Cattle Drive, sits down with Library Director Crosby Kemper III for a wide-ranging conversation in conjunction with the launch of his second novel, Let Us Imagine Lost Love.
    Let Us Imagine Lost Love - Robert Day
    Tuesday, December 8, 2015
    Central Library

    Kansas-reared Robert Day, author of the modern western classic The Last Cattle Drive, sits down with Library Director Crosby Kemper III for a wide-ranging conversation in conjunction with the launch of his second novel, Let Us Imagine Lost Love. Day sets this story largely on Kansas City’s Country Club Plaza and revolves it around a book designer reminiscing about youthful misunderstandings and secret longings for women, about experiences both beautiful and ugly, as he tries to make sense of his life.

    Raised in Merriam, Kansas, Day earned bachelor's and master's degrees at the University of Kansas and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Arkansas. He taught initially at Fort Hays State University and then for 35 years at Washington College.

    He has established the Robert and Kathryn Day Endowment for the Literary Arts to benefit the Library.

  • In a discussion of his new book, Children of Monsters: An Inquiry into the Sons and Daughters of Dictators, author Jay Nordlinger spotlights the offspring of 20 notorious dictators – from Stalin and Mao to Qaddafi and Hussein.
    Children of Monsters: Jay Nordlinger
    Thursday, December 3, 2015
    Central Library

    What is it like to be the son or daughter of an absolute and ruthless dictator? To bear a name – Stalin or Mussolini, Mao or Ceausescu, Qaddafi or Hussein – that’s synonymous with oppression, terror, and evil?

    In a discussion of his new book, Children of Monsters: An Inquiry into the Sons and Daughters of Dictators, author Jay Nordlinger speaks with Library Director Crosby Kemper III about the offspring of 20 of the world’s most notorious despots.

  • The Library, in partnership with American Public Square, launches a series of mannerly discussions of polarizing local issues. Experts on both sides examine the future of the Kansas City International Airport. Remodel or rebuild? And how, exactly?
    KCI Up in the Air - Scott Helm, Kevin Koster, Jon Stephens, Steve Vockrodt
    Wednesday, December 2, 2015
    Central Library

    The Library, in partnership with American Public Square, launches a series of discussions of polarizing local issues – minus the incivility and invective that all too often feed polarity.

    Experts on both sides of the debate join University of Missouri-Kansas City professor and moderator Scott Helm in examining the future of Kansas City International Airport. Remodel or rebuild? Stay with multiple terminals or move to just one? The panel includes Skopos President Kevin Koster, a member of the KCI Airport Terminal Advisory Group; Rockhill Strategic President Jon Stephens, interim executive director of the Kansas City, Kansas, Chamber of Commerce; and Pitch writer Steve Vockrodt. There are fact checkers and a “civility bell.”

  • In a discussion of their new book, former Kansas City Royals pitcher Jeff Montgomery, Hall of Fame swimming coach Peter Malone, and psychologist Andrew Jacobs examine the problems with today’s overwrought youth sports scene and how to fix them.
    Just Let ’Em Play: Guiding Parents, Coaches, and Athletes through Youth Sports
    Wednesday, December 2, 2015
    Plaza Branch

    The stories seem more prevalent and disturbing today than ever: kids being pushed in one or more sports to the point of burnout before high school, parents fighting with referees and umpires, coaches berating their pint-sized players.

    Former Kansas City Royals pitcher Jeff Montgomery, psychologist Andrew Jacobs, and Hall of Fame swimming coach Peter Malone have seen firsthand the issues that are making youth sports increasingly difficult for all – especially the young participants.

  • In a discussion of his new book, world chess champion-turned-human rights activist Garry Kasparov discusses what he says is Russian President Vladimir Putin’s evolution from local to regional to global threat. His advice: Stand up to the bully..
    Winter is Coming: Why Vladimir Putin and the Enemies of the Free World Must Be Stopped - Garry Kasparov
    Wednesday, November 11, 2015
    Plaza Branch

    World chess champion-turned-human rights activist Garry Kasparov sounded his first warning about Vladimir Putin in 2001.

    He now compares the Russian president with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and the Islamic State as an enemy of political liberty and the modern world order. In a discussion of his book, Kasparov examines what he says is Putin’s evolution from local to regional to global threat and advocates that the U.S. and its allies stand up to the bully rather than try to appease him.

  • There was more to General George Custer than Little Bighorn. In a discussion of his new book, Pulitzer winner T.J. Stiles reveals a complex man who helped lead the U.S. into a more modern age and then struggled to cope with that change.
    Custer’s Trials: A Life on the Frontier of a New America - T.J. Stiles
    Monday, November 9, 2015
    Plaza Branch

    Many, if not most, Americans’ understanding of Gen. George Armstrong Custer begins and ends with his demise at Little Bighorn. But that belies the complexity of a historic figure who was capable yet insecure, intelligent yet bigoted, and an individualist at odds with the institution of the military (he was court-martialed twice in six years).

Kansas City Public Library Beta