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American Masters: The Education Of Gore Vidal

Airs Tuesday, August 7, 2012 at 11 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Gore Vidal (1925–2012)

Gore Vidal (1925–2012) has been entertaining, and outraging, the American public for 50 years, setting new artistic standards for historical fiction and establishing himself as a leading contemporary social satirist.

Gore Vidal (center), with John F. Kennedy (left).
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Above: Gore Vidal (center), with John F. Kennedy (left).

He was one of the busiest -- and most eclectic -- intellects in literature, writing cautionary tales about sex, politics, art and philosophy. He was at once a contrarian, a wise man and a romantic -- and was also wickedly funny.

In "The Education Of Gore Vidal," a broad cast of interviewees illuminates Vidal’s work, his life, his contradictions, and his ability to dramatize and animate history, while sticking to the truth.

This film includes scenes from the recent revival of "The Best Man" in New York City, the 2000 Democratic Shadow Convention and Vidal, at home, in Ravello, Italy.

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American Masters: The Education Of Gore Vidal

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Watch The Education of Gore Vidal on PBS. See more from American Masters.

Above: This film includes scenes from the recent revival of "The Best Man" in New York City, the 2000 Democratic Shadow Convention and Gore Vidal, at home, in Ravello, Italy.