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Two Men, the second novel by Elizabeth Stoddard (1823–1902), is a family saga published in 1865, in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War, but is set before the war. In this episode, a visit from Philippa’s attractive college friend reveals Parke as a ladies’ man, and prompts other family members to recognize their own desires. The theme of race relations gets an emphatic introduction, and listeners are advised of offensive racial characterizations and language.
Two Menis read by Shayne Laughter. Stoddard’s letters are read throughout the series by Sarah Torbeck. A review that came out in Boston soon after the publication of Two Men is read in an abridged version by Frank Buczolich.
Heather Perry hosts, with announcer Jack Hanek. The episode was produced, written, and edited by Cynthia Wolfe, with assistance from Heather Perry, Sarah Torbeck, and Jack Hanek.
Special music for Two Mencomes from the album MacDowell: Second Modern Suite / Étude de Concert / Twelve Études(Naxos, 1999), performed by James Barbagallo (1952–1996). The American composer Edward MacDowell, born in 1860, wrote these works for piano in the 1880s, around the time Two Men was reissued.
Executive producer: Joe Crawford
Theme music: The Impossible Shapes