Eric Westervelt is NPR's foreign correspondent currently based in Berlin. Since 2009, he has helped to cover a broad range of news across Europe. His recent reporting has included coverage of the revolutions in North Africa from the popular uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt to the civil war in Libya.
As a foreign correspondent, Westervelt has covered numerous wars and their repercussions across the Middle East for NPR. Prior to his current assignment, he spent several years in the Middle East reporting on Israel and the Palestinian Territories. In that time, Westervelt covered the conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Gaza Strip, the second Lebanon war and reporting in-depth on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict across Israel and the occupied West Bank.
During the initial US-led ground invasion into Iraq in 2003, Westervelt traveled with the lead unit of the Army's Third Infantry Division and later helped cover the insurgency, sectarian violence and the on-going struggle to rebuild the country in the post-Saddam Hussein era. Westervelt was one of the few western reporters on the ground in Gaza during the Fatah-Hamas civil war and he reported on multiple Israeli offensives in the coastal territory. Additionally, he has reported from the Horn of Africa, Yemen and the Persian Gulf countries.
Prior to his Middle East assignments, Westervelt covered military affairs and the Pentagon reporting on a wide range of defense, national security as well as foreign policy issues.
Before joining NPR's Foreign Desk nearly a decade ago, Westervelt covered some of the biggest domestic stories as a reporter on NPR's National Desk. His assignments spanned from the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and the shootings at Columbine High School, to the explosion of TWA flight 800 and the vote recount following the 2000 Presidential Election. He reported on national trends in law enforcement and crime fighting, including police tactics, use of force, the drug war, racial profiling and the legal and political battles over firearms in America.
The breath and depth of his work has been honored with the highest awards in broadcast journalism. He contributed to NPR's 2002 George Foster Peabody Award for coverage of the 9/11 and aftermath; the 2003 Alfred I. duPont - Columbia University award also for 9/11 coverage and the war in Afghanistan; and a 2004 and a 2007 duPont-Columbia University Award for NPR's coverage of the war in Iraq and its affect on Iraqi society. Westervelt was selected as a 2012-2013 John S. Knight Fellow in journalism at Stanford University.
Westervelt's 2009 series with NPR photojournalist David Gilkey about on life along Israel's barrier in and around the West Bank won the Overseas Press Club of America's Lowell Thomas Award Citation for Excellence.
In lighter news, Westervelt occasionally does a feature for NPR's Arts Desk. His 2010 profile of roots rock pioneer Roy Orbison was part of NPR's 50 Great Voices series. His feature on the making of John Coltrane's classic "A Love Supreme," was part of the NPR series on the most influential American musical works of the 20th century which was recognized with a Peabody Award.
Before joining NPR, Westervelt worked as a freelance reporter in Oregon, a news director and reporter in New Hampshire and reported for Monitor Radio, the broadcast edition of the Christian Science Monitor.
Westervelt is a graduate of the Putney School and received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Reed College.
Alan Cheuse has been reviewing books on All Things Considered since the 1980s. His challenge is to make each two-minute review as fresh and interesting as possible while focusing on the essence of the book itself.
Formally trained as a literary scholar, Cheuse writes fiction and novels and publishes short stories. He is the author of five novels, two collections of short fiction, and the memoir Fall out of Heaven. His prize-winning novel To Catch the Lightning is an exploration of the intertwined plights of real-life frontier photographer Edward Curtis and the American Indian. His latest work of book-length fiction is the novel Song of Slaves in the Desert, which tells the story of a Jewish rice plantation-owning family in South Carolina and the Africans they enslave. With Caroline Marshall, he has edited two volumes of short stories.
With novelist Nicholas Delbanco, Cheuse wrote Literature: Craft & Voice, a major new introduction to literary study. Cheuse's short fiction has appeared in publications such as The New Yorker, The Antioch Review, Ploughshares, and The Southern Review. His most recent collection of his short fiction was published in September 1998, and his essay collection, Listening to the Page, appeared in 2001.
Cheuse teaches writing at George Mason University in Washington, DC, and spends his summers teaching writing at the Squaw Valley Community of Writers in Santa Cruz, Calif. Cheuse earned his Ph.D. in comparative literature with a focus on Latin American literature from Rutgers University.