Program 401: Ceramic Arts of Portugal; EU Immigration Issues; Trans-Siberian Railway

Release Date: 05-02-2015


NPR's former Moscow correspondent David Greene joins us to describe his winter ride on the Trans-Siberian Railway, and share what it taught him about the Russian people. And we'll examine how Europeans are debating immigration issues in light of the recent increase in refugees from Syria and North Africa. Then it’s off to Portugal, where we’ll learn why its colorful traditional ceramic tiles are so central to the culture.


  • Cristina Duarte, tour guide based in Lisbon
  • Robert Wright, tour guide to Portugal
  • Nina Bernardo, tour guide based in Rome
  • Holger Zimmer, RBB radio producer and tour guide, based in Berlin
  • Hilbren Buys, geopolitics lecturer and tour guide based in Brussels
  • David Greene, NPR Morning Edition co-host and author of "Midnight in Siberia" (W. W. Norton)

Related Links

  • Cristina Duarte has her tour guiding website.  
  • Robert Wright's website.
  • Caller Barbara bought tiles from the Sant'Anna tile factory in Portugal. 
  • Projecto SOS Azulejo was formed to protect Portugal's heritage of historic and artistic tiles.
  • The Museu Nacional do Azulejo in Lisbon displays 16th century to contemporary tiles and porcelain art of Portugal.
  • David Greene, former Moscow bureau chief for NPR, wrote "Midnight in Siberia" about his travels on and off the Trans-Siberian Railroad.   It is published by W. W. Norton and Co.
  • On his trip across Russia, David Greene sang Beatles songs with a famous singing group of elderly ladies known as "The Babushkas of Buranovo."  They are from a traditional Udmurt culture in the Ural Mountains, and almost won the Eurovision song contest in 2012.