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Poetry
4:28 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

New Poet Laureate: 'The Meaning Has Always Stayed The Same'

Charles Wright, a retired professor at the University of Virginia, has been named the nation's next poet laureate.
Holly Wright Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Originally published on Thu June 12, 2014 5:43 pm

The Library of Congress announced Thursday that the nation's next poet laureate will be Charles Wright, a retired professor at the University of Virginia.

"I'm very honored and flattered to be picked, but also somewhat confused," the poet told The New York Times. "I really don't know what I'm supposed to do. But as soon as I find out, I'll do it."

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Author Interviews
3:02 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

Former BP CEO: 'Glass Closet' Still Holds Many Gay Workers Back

Originally published on Thu June 12, 2014 6:30 pm

"It was time to leave the building."

So begins a new book by John Browne, former CEO of the energy giant BP. But that sentence could easily have read: "It was time to leave the closet."

During his 12 years as CEO, he never discussed his sexuality in the workplace. That changed in 2007, when his relationship with a male escort was exposed and Browne resigned amid an ensuing scandal. At the time, he said in a statement, "I have always regarded my sexuality as a personal matter, to be kept private."

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U.S.
3:03 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

At The Head Of Her Class, And Homeless

Rashema Melson lives in the D.C. General homeless shelter with her mother and two brothers. "Because you live in a shelter — that's not who you are, that's just where you reside at for the moment," she says.
Meredith Rizzo NPR

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 4:24 pm

On Wednesday, Rashema Melson will graduate at the top of her class as the valedictorian of Anacostia High School in Washington, D.C. She's headed to Georgetown University this fall on a full scholarship.

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The Salt
3:43 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Don't Be A Jerk. There's A Lot More To Island Cooking

The pillars of Caribbean cuisine, framing the front of a streetside stall.
Ellen Silverman Courtesy of Media Masters Publicity

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 2:29 pm

Anyone who has eaten many plates of blackened, mangy-looking jerk chicken might get the impression that Caribbean cooking is fairly limited. The cuisine of most of the English-speaking islands is often lumped under the umbrella of stews, dumplings and pineapple-strewn desserts.

But Suzanne and Michelle Rousseau say there's much more to island cooking. They're sisters and cooks based in Jamaica, and their cookbook Caribbean Potluck introduces a new way of thinking about food from their homeland.

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Politics
3:50 am
Tue June 10, 2014

Clinton Sought 'Tougher Deal,' But Won't Second-Guess Bergdahl Swap

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 12:38 pm

Below are excerpts from Hillary Clinton's interview Monday with NPR's Renee Montagne. Clinton's new book, Hard Choices, will be published Tuesday.

Portions of this interview will air on Morning Edition.

On running for president in 2016

HILLARY CLINTON: I have made some hard choices, and I face some hard choices. And, as I say in the book, I have not made a decision yet. ...

RENEE MONTAGNE: This is, may I say, a classic campaign book. ...

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Sports
4:54 pm
Sun June 8, 2014

Baseball Has An Elbow Problem: More Pros Getting Ligament Surgery

After this pitch on May 27, Los Angeles Angels pitcher Sean Burnett left the game with a torn elbow ligament. Friday, he became the latest pro to undergo "Tommy John" surgery.
Elaine Thompson AP

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 1:13 pm

On Friday, Los Angeles Angels pitcher Sean Burnett became the latest player this season to undergo "Tommy John" surgery. In this weekend's MLB draft, at least four players selected had already had the infamous elbow surgery as amateurs.

The operation is named after the first player to undergo the procedure to fix an injured elbow ligament, in 1974. Pitchers are particularly vulnerable to this injury.

The procedure involves taking a tendon from somewhere else in the body — or from a cadaver — and grafting it into place. Pitchers get it most often.

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Around the Nation
4:43 pm
Sun June 8, 2014

When A Parent Goes To Prison, A Child Also Pays A Price

Ifetayo Harvey's father went to prison when she was 4 years old and released when she was 12. Now 22, she says the experience helped her empathize with others and understand people from a different perspective.
Courtesy of Ifetayo Harvey

When she was a child, 22-year-old Ifetayo Harvey's father was sentenced to prison for cocaine trafficking.

"My dad went to prison when I was 4 years old, and he was released when I was 12," Harvey says.

Harvey is one of millions of young people who grew up with a parent in prison. A recent study from the National Academy of Sciences examined the growth of incarceration in the United States, and among the topics was the effect on kids and families when a parent goes to prison.

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Business
5:45 pm
Sat June 7, 2014

'Downton Abbey' Craze Serves Up A Demand For Butlers

Jim Carter as Mr. Carson in Downton Abbey, which has helped fuel a growing demand for butlers around the world.
WGBH/PBS

Originally published on Sun June 8, 2014 3:05 pm

Butlers in American pop culture tend to provide comic relief — think The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or The Birdcage. Or, like Batman's Alfred, the butler is more of a friend than an employee.

But one show has brought back the classic butler, with a vengeance. Since the British period drama Downton Abbey made its debut on PBS in 2010, the demand for butlers in some parts of the world has surged.

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Religion
5:45 pm
Sat June 7, 2014

Lessons From The Language Boot Camp For Mormon Missionaries

Mormon missionaries pray before the start of their Mandarin Chinese class at the Missionary Training Center, in Provo, Utah.
Rick Bowmer AP

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 10:01 am

On a sunny Wednesday in Provo, Utah, a long line of cars spits out about 300 new arrivals to the Missionary Training Center. The facility, known as MTC, is the largest language training school for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Every year, about 36,000 students come to the center before they leave on missions around the world to spread the Mormon faith.

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All Tech Considered
2:31 pm
Sat June 7, 2014

Stuck In The Machine Zone: Your Sweet Tooth For 'Candy Crush'

The addiction of games — from casinos to smartphones — is not just about the thrill of winning.
Paul J. Richards AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 9:04 am

If you have a smartphone — or if you've ever used the Internet — you've probably heard of Candy Crush Saga. It's a mobile game in which you line up pieces of colorful candy in rows to score points. The game is simple, but addictive.

Very addictive.

According to the game's maker, King Digital Entertainment, Candy Crush has more than 93 million users who play more than 1 billion times a day in total.

Candy Crush has people hooked.

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Law
1:28 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

'Burning Down The House' Makes The Case Against Juvenile Incarceration

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 2:57 pm

The American rate of juvenile incarceration is seven times that of Great Britain, and 18 times that of France. It costs, on average, $88,000 a year to keep a youth locked up — far more than the U.S. spends on a child's education.

But the biggest problem with juvenile incarceration, author Nell Bernstein tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies, is that instead of helping troubled kids get their lives back on track, detention usually makes their problems worse, and sets them in the direction of more crime and self-destructive behavior.

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Author Interviews
3:36 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

From Lunch (n.) To Balding (adj.), Some Words Are Just 'Bad English'

Originally published on Sat June 7, 2014 9:02 pm

Ammon Shea, author of Reading the OED, has just come out with a new book about words — words like "dilapidated," "balding" and "lunch." Shea says those words were once frowned upon, as were more than 200 other words he has compiled.

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Author Interviews
2:59 pm
Mon June 2, 2014

'How Not To Be Wrong' In Math Class? Add A Dose Of Skepticism

Rudyanto Wijaya iStockphoto

Originally published on Sat June 7, 2014 9:01 pm

In How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking, University of Wisconsin professor Jordan Ellenberg celebrates the virtues of mathematics, especially when they're taught well. He writes that a math teacher has to be a guide to good reasoning, and "a math course that fails do so is essentially teaching the student to be a very slow, buggy version of Microsoft Excel. And, let's be frank, that really is what many of our math courses are doing."

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Around the Nation
5:00 pm
Sun June 1, 2014

When A Bullet Misses Its Target, It Can Still Kill

Chicago police detectives investigate the scene where a number of people, including a 3-year-old child, were shot in a city park in Chicago in 2013.
Paul Beaty AP

Originally published on Mon June 2, 2014 11:08 am

In May, multiple people were struck or even killed by stray bullets in cities across the country, including Sacramento, Calif., and Des Moines, Iowa. In Washington, D.C., a 6-year-old is recovering from getting shot on a playground.

Thursday, Betty Howard, a 58-year-old special education teacher, was talking with friends inside a real-estate office in Chicago's South Side when she was killed by a stray bullet.

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Music Interviews
3:20 pm
Sun June 1, 2014

Meshell Ndegeocello Trades Songs And Stories, Live In L.A.

Meshell Ndegeocello's latest album is Comet, Come To Me.
Jason Rodgers Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon June 2, 2014 4:58 am

After two decades recording and performing, Meshell Ndegeocello no longer has any illusions about the way music publicity works. "You need those generalizations to create a marketing scheme," the celebrated bassist and songwriter says, "and it's hard to make a generalization about me."

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The Salt
3:05 am
Sun June 1, 2014

The Humble Knish: Chock-Full Of Carbs And History

A woman in front of Mrs. Stahl's knish shop in Brooklyn's Brighton Beach neighborhood where author Laura Silver went as a child.
Courtesy of the University Press of New England

Originally published on Thu June 5, 2014 5:45 am

When Laura Silver's favorite knish shop in New York closed it doors, she started to investigate why it shut down. And that led to a years-long research project, she tells Weekend Edition's Rachel Martin.

Her book Knish: In Search of the Jewish Soul Food explores the history of the baked delicacy filled with meat or vegetables and what it means to the people who love it.

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Movie Interviews
4:20 pm
Sat May 31, 2014

What Is Courage?: 'Korengal' Breaks Down War In Afghanistan

Sgt. 1st Class Mark Patterson checks his men at Outpost Restrepo in Afghanistan, as documented in the new film Korengal.
Outpost Films

Originally published on Sat May 31, 2014 4:42 pm

In the new documentary Korengal, journalist and director Sebastian Junger again takes viewers into Afghanistan's Korengal Valley — once considered one of the military's most dangerous postings.

The film uses footage shot by Junger and the late photojournalist Tim Hetherington. Between 2007 and 2008, Junger and Hetherington spent 10 months with a platoon of about 30 men at an outpost called Restrepo.

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Technology
1:07 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Techies, White House Take Part In National Day Of Civic Hacking

Sameer Verma

This weekend, software developers, entrepreneurs, and local governments from around the world are coming together to design and build tools for the common good.

Using publicly released data, participants in the National Day of Civic Hacking will work together to integrate new technology tools to solve community problems.

Todd Khozein is one of the organizers of #HackForChange. He is the co-founder of SecondMuse, a collaborative innovation lab that helps find technological solutions to everyday issues.

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StoryCorps
1:04 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Once Forbidden, Books Become A Lifeline For A Young Migrant Worker

On a visit to StoryCorps, Storm Reyes told her son, Jeremy Hagquist, about growing up as a farm laborer. Reyes eventually went to night school and worked in a library for more than 30 years.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 11:33 am

In the late 1950s, when she was just 8 years old, Storm Reyes began picking fruit as a full-time farm laborer for less than $1 per hour. Storm and her family moved often, living in Native American migrant worker camps without electricity or running water.

With all that moving around, she wasn't allowed to have books growing up, Storm tells her son, Jeremy Hagquist, on a visit to StoryCorps in Tacoma, Wash.

"Books are heavy, and when you're moving a lot you have to keep things just as minimal as possible," she says.

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Music Articles
2:45 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Cause For Celebration: The Iconic Blue Note Records At 75

Drummer Art Blakey, who recorded for Blue Note from 1954 to 1965, in the studio.
Francis Wolff Blue Note Records

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 9:48 pm

Blue Note Records is the kind of record label that people like to call "storied" — so celebrated and impactful that no one narrative can capture its essence. From swing to bebop and hard bop, through fusion and the avant-garde, Blue Note has been telling the story of jazz in the grooves of its records since 1939 — and for its 75th anniversary, it's releasing remastered vinyl editions of some gems from its catalog. But the real legacy of the label is too big to capture on disc.

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The Salt
1:30 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Want Your Cheese To Age Gracefully? Cowgirl Creamery's Got Tips

Sue Conley (left) and Peggy Smith, co-founders of Cowgirl Creamery, prepare their chilled leek and asparagus soup with creme fraiche and fresh ricotta at Cowgirl Creamery in Point Reyes Station, Calif.
Tim Hussin for NPR

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 9:27 am

In the world of cheese, much like in the world of wine, the ultimate mark of success is acceptance by the French. That's exactly what happened to Sue Conley and Peggy Smith, co-founders of Cowgirl Creamery in northern California.

In 2010, when they were inducted into the prestigious Guilde des Fromagers, they were among the first wave of American cheesemakers to join its ranks.

Cowgirl Creamery also put out its first cookbook in late 2013.

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Digital Life
5:11 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

A Killer's Manifesto Reveals Wide Reach Of Misogyny Online

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 7:53 am

The misogynistic manifesto written by Elliot Rodger, the 22-year-old who police say killed six people before taking his own life Friday, quickly led to an outpouring on Twitter under the hashtag #YesAllWomen. Women and men alike used the hashtag to share stories and statistics about harassment and sexual assault.

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All Tech Considered
4:57 pm
Sun May 25, 2014

Going Dark: The Internet Behind The Internet

The Deep Web is a part of the Internet not accessible by standard Web browsers and search engines.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 1:17 pm

The average computer user with an Internet connection has access to an amazing wealth of information. But there's also an entire world that's invisible to your standard Web browser.

These parts of the Internet are known as the Deep Web. The tools to get to there are just a few clicks away, and more and more people who want to browse the Web anonymously are signing on.

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Photography And Memory
3:18 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Overexposed? Camera Phones Could Be Washing Out Our Memories

Rebecca Woolf takes a lot of photos of her children for her blog, Girl's Gone Child, but says she tries to not let the camera get in the middle of a moment.
Courtesy of Rebecca Woolf

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 10:58 am

Los Angeles blogger Rebecca Woolf uses her blog, Girl's Gone Child, as a window into her family's life. Naturally, it includes oodles of pictures of her four children.

She says she's probably taken tens of thousands of photos since her oldest child was born. And she remembers the moment when it suddenly clicked — if you will — that she was too absorbed in digital documentation.

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Found Recipes
2:54 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Freed From The Sidewalk Cart, This Sauerkraut Goes Global

Don't diss the sauerkraut: It may be a hot dog staple, but it's more versatile than you think.
Courtesy of Edward Lee

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 6:21 pm

Edward Lee thought he knew sauerkraut. The chef for the Louisville, Ky., restaurant 610 Magnolia, grew up in New York City, a place where sauerkraut means one thing: "sidewalk hot dog carts — cheap, bad, overboiled sauerkraut on top of awful kosher hot dogs," he says.

He loved it, as any native New Yorker might, but it was sauerkraut -- boring, safe, standard.

Many years later, after Lee moved to Kentucky, he had a sauerkraut surprise at his then-fiance's house. When she broke out a jar of her mother's homemade sauerkraut, he didn't expect too much.

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Politics
3:18 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

40 Years After Watergate, A Look Back At Nixon's Downfall

Washington Journal

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 11:43 am

Forty years ago, in mid-May 1974, Elizabeth Drew, the Washington correspondent for The New Yorker, wrote this in her journal: "Rumors went around the Capitol today that the President was resigning."

The Capitol, she observed was "noisy and edgy .. and in the hothouse atmosphere, the rumors burst into full bloom."

By August 1974 the president in question, Richard Nixon, would resign rather than face a Senate impeachment trial.

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Environment
1:20 am
Wed May 21, 2014

For N.J. Mayor, The Time To Adapt To Rising Sea Levels Is Now

Hoboken, N.J., residents walk through flood water in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Mayor Dawn Zimmer is advocating for better planning and increased funding for flood-prone urban areas.
Charles Sykes AP

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 10:41 am

Last week, scientists warned that a massive chunk of the West Antarctica Ice Sheet will eventually drift into the sea and melt, raising sea levels at least 10 feet higher than previous predictions.

Even before the announcement, scientists at the nonprofit research organization Climate Central predicted that surging seas could put the homes of nearly 5 million Americans underwater by the end of this century.

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Music
3:18 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Heir To A Jazz Legacy, A Trumpeter Finds His Own Way

Theo Croker's new album, AfroPhysicist, comes out May 20.
Thomas Brodin Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 8:20 am

Jazz composer and trumpeter Theo Croker opens his new album, AfroPhysicist, with an ode to his grandfather: New Orleans jazz great Doc Cheatham. The thing is, Croker didn't grow up in New Orleans or any other jazz hub. He's from Jacksonville, Fla., and he was just a child when his grandfather died in 1997. It wasn't until his grandfather's memorial services — attended by jazz legends — that he decided to join the legacy.

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Shots - Health News
3:07 pm
Sat May 17, 2014

Filtering A New Idea: A Book That's Educational And 'Drinkable'

Contaminated water can spread diseases like cholera and typhoid. A new project aims to provide water filters in the form of an educational book.
Soe Than Win AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat May 17, 2014 8:32 pm

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Media
8:53 am
Fri May 16, 2014

'I've Enjoyed Every Minute Of It': Carl Kasell On His 60 Years In Radio

NPR's Carl Kasell delivers one of his last newscasts during Morning Edition on Dec. 30, 2009, in Washington, D.C.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 12:06 pm

Carl Kasell — the official judge and scorekeeper of the NPR quiz show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! — is stepping down after more than 60 years in radio. While you'll still hear him from time to time as he eases into the role as scorekeeper emeritus, his final broadcast airs on Saturday and Sunday.

Kasell recently had a cameo on The Simpsons, and since that's the pinnacle of any career, this seemed like a good moment to look back on his many decades in broadcast.

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