Joseph Cooper

Host Topical Currents

WLRN Radio's Joseph Cooper says producing and hosting Topical Currents is the most rewarding experience of his long radio career, which began at the University of Missouri School of Journalism in the 1970s.

"It's now an obsession, but I never thought talk radio would be in my future. The wide, wide range of topics, research and reading keeps me hustling all week," he says. "It's similar to a daily newspaper column because, essentially, we write an essay to frame each show before conducting the interviews and taking calls and then it all starts over again for the next day's program."

Topical Currents is put together by a small production team, which includes producer Richard Ives and technical director Bonnie Berman. Syndicated food and dining columnist Linda Gassenheimer frequents the program, as well as a handful of expert regular contributors and regional reporters.

Topical Currents is a sub-tropical blend of regional issues and politics, local profiles, author interviews, "At Your Service" programs, South Florida history and any topic listeners might banter about around the proverbial "water cooler." It was first broadcast in January 1999.

Cooper is often asked to name his "favorite" interview subject.

"Hmmmm," he says with the hint of a smile. "Not necessarily the celebrities or famous authors but the one I've just done. Well usually.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

America’s New Dilemma: Fear of A Hip Hop Planet

Miami Law Professor Donald Jones
www.law.miami.edu

10/08/14 - Wednesday’s Topical Currents is with University of Miami law professor Donald Jones. He criticizes the labeling of hip-hop music as destructive noise, instead of an art form. Media portrayals of saggy panted, hoody wearing thugs, he says, is stereotype, and doesn’t consider the urban crisis which created much of rap culture.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon October 6, 2014

World War II Historian Rick Atkinson & “The Guns At Last Light”

liberationtrilogy.com

10/06/14 - Join us for Monday’s Topical Currents. We learn about little-known details of the largest military operation in history: World War II’s “Operation Overlord.”  Allied forces began it on “D-Day,” in June of 1944. The planning was meticulous, and the result was the beginning of the end for Hitler’s global domination plan. Literary contributor Ariel Gonzalez speaks with historian Rick Atkinson

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Food And Dining
1:30 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

Ritz October Biergarten, Deering Estate Foundation’s Wine On Harvest Moon Oktoberfest

Glazed Pork with Caraway Cabbage
Credit http://www.dinnerinminutes.com/recipe.php

10/02/14 - Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview Ritz Carlton Coconut Grove Chef,  Ramesh Kaduru and Crown Wine and Spirits wine buyer, Veronica Litton.  It's Oktoberfest!  Chef Ramish talks about the Ritz October Biergarten and his appearance at the Deering Estate Foundation’s 13th annual Wine On Harvest Moon event.  The event features German wine and food.  Veronica talks with Fred about German Riesling wines and German beer.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

A Mindful Miami Conference and How Better To Serve Our Community

www.facebook.com/MindfulKidsMiami

10/02/14 - Thursday’s Topical Currents begins with a look at the upcoming A Mindful Miami Conference and how better to serve our community.  We’ll visit with the conference co-chair and founder of Mindful Kids Miami, Valerie York-Zimmerman.  Also with us, David Lawrence – the President of The Early Childhood Initiative Foundation. And more...

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

South Florida History Quiz with Dr. Paul George October 2014 Edition

Bonnie Berman, Joseph Cooper and Dr. Paul George
Cesar Barroso of miamihoje.com

10/01/14 - Wednesday's Topical Currents is another edition of the popular South Florida History Quiz with historian and author Dr. Paul George.  Listeners are invited to answer questions about local history, pop culture, sports and more . . .Here’s a sample: In 1881, a Philadelphia  man was  called “The Savior of Florida” after buying four-million acres of  land.  It triggered the state’s first land boom.  Who was he?

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon September 29, 2014

The Multi-Billion Dollar Surgery Industry And The Cost of Cutting

Courtesy of Berkley Trade Paperback

09/29/14 - Monday’s Topical Currents is with practicing surgeon Dr. Paul Ruggieri, who’s written THE COST OF CUTTING:  A Surgeon Reveals the Truth Behind a Multibillion Dollar Industry.  Operating rooms are a main source of hospital revenues.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu September 25, 2014

The Personal Finance Industry's Dark Side

Helaine Olen
helaineolen.com

09/25/14 - Thursday's Topical Currents is a rebroadcast that goes behind the scenes of the individual finance industry, with journalist Helaine Olen. She’s written POUND FOOLISH:  Exposing the Dark Side of the Personal Finance Industry.  Most well-known TV and radio experts sell dreams that are seldom reached.

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Topical Currents
2:53 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

We want to know: Should Joseph Cooper Continue The History Calendar?

Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman in the studio.
Paul Leary WLRN

At the close of every Topical Currents, since its inception in 1999, Joseph Cooper incorporates historical and fun facts over the ending theme music.   We want to know from you, should Joseph continue to end the program with the calendar?  Please comment below, or on the TC Facebook page or Twitter.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

The Vanishing Neighbor: The Transormation Of American Community

Marc Dunkelman and President Bill Clinton
twitter.com/MarcDunkelman

09/24/14 - Without much notice, America’s basic community building blocks have dissolved.  Wednesday’s  Topical Currents looks at the epochal shift in the structure of American life with journalist and author, Marc Dunkelman.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

WLRN-TV Documentary, “Deep City: The Birth Of The Miami Sound”

09/23/14 - Tuesday’s Topical Currents recalls the early days of soul music . . . in Miami. The first black-owned music label was created by Willie Clarke and Johnny Pearsall.  They learned their trade on the streets of Overtown and at Johnny’s Record Store. Numerous Miami artists charted music during the period, including singers Betty Wright and Helene Smith.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

The Unparalleled Beauty And Biodiversity Of The Greater Everglades Area

www.facebook.com/southfloridawild

09/22/14 - Monday’s Topical Currents considers the unparalleled beauty and biodiversity of the greater Everglades area. The lands surrounding the ‘Glades is the most populous urban area in the southeastern U-S . . .  the seventh largest in the nation. We speak with the Executive Director of the South Florida Wildlands Association, which monitors factors which affect the delicate the ecosystem.

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Topical Currents
1:30 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Is The Era Of Truly Fine Dining Over?

John Mariani
www.johnmariani.com

09/18/14 - 1:30 - Syndicated food columnist Linda Gassenheimer, Special wine correspondent Fred Tasker and WLRN hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman interview with John Mariani, restaurant and travel columnist for Esquire Magazine and the Huffington Post.  He has been called “the most influential food-wine critic in the popular press” by the Philadelphia Inquirer.   We discuss the state of the restaurant industry in the US. He wrote a scathing article “What is Bon Appetit Magazine trying to sell us?” referring to their 50 nominees for the best restaurants of 2014.  He questions their assumption that fine dining is dead. We talk about their concept of hipster restaurants; the overpriced food and what America wants when dining out. 

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

How Analogies Reveal Connections, Spark Innovations and Sell Our Greatest Ideas

John Pollack
twitter.com/jdpollack

09/18/14 - Thursday's Topical Currents begins with former Presidential speech writer John Pollack, whose latest book is SHORTCUT:  How Analogies Reveal Connections, Spark Innovations and Sell Our Greatest Ideas.Wordsmiths have shaped world history by simplifying complex ideas into easily understood ideas. And more:  Linda Gassenheimer’s Food & Dining, with Esquire Magazine’s restaurant and travel columnist John Mariani.Tune in for Topical Currents with hosts Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman at 1pm.

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Topical Currents
2:00 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Joseph Cooper Talks About His Medical Ordeal/Return To Hosting Topical Currents

Joseph Cooper and Bonnie Berman in the studio today.
Paul Leary/WLRN

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

BLOCKBUSTERS: Hit-Making, Risk-Taking, and the Big Business of Entertainment

Wednesday's Topical Currents is with Harvard University Professor Anita Elberse.  She specializes in today’s entertainment culture, and has written BLOCKBUSTERS:  Hit-Making, Risk-Taking, and the Big Business of Entertainment.

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