Radio Times

Candy, clowns and costumes

October 31, 2013

Guests: Samira Kawash, Linda Rodriguez McRobbie, Jennifer Finney Boylan

Did you load up on candy for tonight’s trick-or-treaters?  Or are you the house that passes out the pretzels?  Tons of candy will land in pillowcases and plastic pumpkins (the average one holds about 250 pieces) as costumed kids all over the country pound the pavement looking for sweets. But how did candy become wrapped up in the Halloween ritual?  And with all the new emphasis on healthy eating, how should parents handle their children’s haul? We’ll get some history and advice from SAMIRA KAWASH, the author of Candy: A Century of Panic and Pleasure. Then, forget zombies and vampires, for some people there’s nothing scarier than a clown.  We’ll talk with writer LINDA RODRIGUEZ MCROBBIE about the dark side of clowns. And finally, Americans spend $2.6 billion a year on costumes. Why?  JENNIFER FINNEY BOYLAN, a transgender writer and English Professor at Colby College talks about what costumes reveal about us.

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