Arts/Life

Author Interviews
3:29 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

A Poet Parses The Legacy Of War In 'My Life As A Foreign Country'

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 6:31 pm

War is in Brian Turner's blood. His father served during the Cold War, his uncle fought in Vietnam, his grandfather fought in World War II and his great-grandfather in World War I. And the family's warrior tendencies went beyond deployments: Turner's dad built a martial arts studio in the garage, and the family mixed napalm and blew things up for fun.

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Children's Health
3:02 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

It May Be 'Perfectly Normal,' But It's Also Frequently Banned

Michael Emberley's illustrations, like this one showing an egg traveling through a fallopian tube, make sexual health information accessible to an elementary and middle school audience. But elements of the art, including naked bodies, make some parents uncomfortable.
Candlewick Press

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 6:31 pm

Banned Books Week kicks off Sunday: Each year, the American Library Association takes this week to sponsor events all over the country to talk about the books that shock, offend, and generally make Americans uncomfortable.

Violence and curse words are two of the top three reasons books get banned in the U.S.

The third reason is sexual content. For example, the Fifty Shades of Grey series has been frequently banned from libraries for its explicit descriptions of intercourse.

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My Big Break
3:02 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Mafia Wife, Getaway Driver, Stunt Woman: From The Underworld To Hollywood

In order to secure a career as a stunt woman, Georgia Durante would show up on Hollywood film sets asking for work. At first, directors ignored her. Then they saw her drive.
Courtesy of Georgia Durante

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 6:31 pm

As part of a series called "My Big Break," All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

Georgia Durante's life has taken some unexpected turns. She was a model for Kodak — a "Kodak Girl" — who went on to do TV and commercial work as a stunt driver. In the '90s, she appeared in Chevrolet ads and was the stunt double for Cindy Crawford in a Pepsi commercial.

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Television
3:02 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

In 'Transparent,' Transgender Issues Are A Family Affair

Amy Landecker and Jeffrey Tambor are two of the stars of Transparent, in which Tambor's character comes out as transgender to her three adult children.
Beth Dubber Amazon Studios

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 6:31 pm

This fall, one of the more interesting and bold TV shows you'll see isn't being released by a major network — instead, it's coming out of Amazon Studios.

Transparent is a comedy-drama that centers on a family and their lives following the discovery that their father, whom they'd known as Mort (played by Jeffrey Tambor of Arrested Development fame) is a transgender woman named named Maura.

"Are you saying you're going to start dressing up like a lady all of the time?" asks daughter Sarah (Amy Landecker).

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Code Switch
5:46 am
Sun September 21, 2014

Adding Color To 'The Great White Way'

Sharp observations about race, class and gender plus pure passion for the theater: That's what get when you ask a distinguished panel of playwrights whether "The Great White Way" is still too white.
Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 9:15 am

Sharp observations about race, class and gender plus pure passion for the theater: That's what you get when you ask a distinguished panel of playwrights whether "The Great White Way" is still too white.

Award-winning dramatists David Henry Hwang, Lydia Diamond, Kristoffer Diaz and Bruce Norris are some of America's most critically acclaimed contemporary playwrights. Their work captures the tensions and aspirations of an increasingly diverse America, but they all acknowledged that it was a challenge to bring a more diverse audience to theaters.

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Book News & Features
5:46 am
Sun September 21, 2014

Finding A Voice — Again — In The Pages Of A Comic Book

Recall and Given recasts the story of David Rector and Roz Alexander-Kasparik as a superhero comic.
Roz Alexander-Kasparik

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 9:15 am

This is a story about love. It's a story about bad things happening to good people, about memory and perseverance — and comic books. But most of all, it's a story about a voice. A mellow, smooth voice, just right for late-night jazz.

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Movie Interviews
5:46 am
Sun September 21, 2014

Boys Puzzle Through Twists And Turns In 'Maze Runner'

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 9:15 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

WADE GOODWYN, HOST:

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Author Interviews
5:46 am
Sun September 21, 2014

Jargon-Free History Of The Universe Finds Beauty In Ordinary Words

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 9:15 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

WADE GOODWYN, HOST:

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Book Reviews
3:31 am
Sun September 21, 2014

The Stories In 'Bright Shards' Glimmer With Empathetic Power

iStockphoto.com

Bright Shards of Someplace Else is Monica McFawn's first collection of short stories, and it's already won this year's Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction. Perhaps it was her idiosyncratic voice, or her flair for distinctive characters that the judges recognized. Or maybe it was her empathetic power. Either way, McFawn has talent. In these 11 stories she manages to range from fantastic to satiric to poignant.

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Author Interviews
2:56 pm
Sat September 20, 2014

'Passages' Author Reflects On Her Own Life Journey

Gail Sheehy's previous books include The Man Who Changed the World: The Lives of Mikhail S. Gorbachev, Hillary's Choice and Middletown, America: One Town's Passage from Trauma to Hope.
Yolanda Perez Harper Collins

Originally published on Sun September 21, 2014 12:23 am

Journalist and author Gail Sheehy has taken readers into the minds and hearts of countless important figures. Throughout her career, she's written in-depth character portraits of Hillary Clinton, Michael Gorbachev and Margaret Thatcher, among others.

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
8:14 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Not My Job: Travel Guru Rick Steves Gets Quizzed On Steve Ricks

Courtesy of Rick Steves

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 9:40 am

Travel guru Rick Steves was born and raised in Seattle, where we're taping our show this week, but he didn't stay put for long. Steves spent most of his adult life traveling the world, writing a series of guidebooks, hosting a travel show for PBS and ruining some of Europe's most treasured cities with hordes of Americans following his advice.

Since we specialize in asking people things they know nothing about, we've decided to ask Rick Steves three questions about people out there in the world named Steve Ricks.

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Author Interviews
5:40 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Picasso, Nazis And A Daring Escape In 'My Grandfather's Gallery'

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 9:16 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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The Salt
5:03 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Beyond Charity: Turning The Soup Kitchen Upside Down

A cooking class at DC Central Kitchen on Aug. 29, 2013.
Courtesy of DC Central Kitchen

If you've ever volunteered in a soup kitchen, you know the feeling of having served others.

But what about those on the other side of the food line? Are they getting what they need most?

Robert Egger, the founder of DC Central Kitchen, didn't think so.

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Bolano's Newly Translated Novel Wrests Beauty From Despair

When Roberto Bolano died in 2003, he left behind a body of work that would later distinguish him as the most commanding writer to have emerged from Latin America in the last few decades. Although he gained international acclaim for epics like The Savage Detectives and 2666, his novellas and short stories have been equally provocative. Bolano managed to pack in all the angst, detail, and disillusionment that make his longer book such a permeating force into works of one or two hundred pages.

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Author Interviews
3:11 am
Sat September 20, 2014

Why Afghanistan's 'Underground Girls' Skirt Tradition To Live As Boys

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 9:16 am

In many families of Afghanistan, the birth of a girl is mourned. While boys are seen as blessings, girls are considered burdens and forced to live a strict life of limited options. They can't leave the house alone; they're not educated; and they're dressed in clothes that conceal them and literally restrict their view of the world.

But some young girls find a way to fight that for at least a few years.

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This Week's Must Read
3:42 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Amid NFL Scandals, A Novel About America's Love Of The Sport

This was not the way America wanted the NFL season to start.

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Book Reviews
3:27 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

For The Autumnal Equinox, A Poem As Chilling As The Fall Weather

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 4:08 pm

This time of year always reminds me of a wonderfully autumnal poem called "How to Like It," by Stephen Dobyns. Set in "the first days of fall," the poem describes a man whose summer seems long over: Old memories weigh on him, and new adventures feel just out of reach.

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Code Switch
2:16 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Examining Bill Cosby's Legacy As 'The Cosby Show' Turns 30

The Cosby Show starred Bill Cosby and Phylicia Rashad as Cliff and Clair Huxtable, an upper-middle-class couple in New York. Tempestt Bledsoe, Malcolm-Jamal Warner, Lisa Bonet and Keshia Knight Pulliam played four of their five children.
Frank Carroll AP

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 4:59 pm

The Cosby Show celebrates its 30th birthday on Saturday.

It was a monster hit inspired by the comedy and life experiences of its star, Bill Cosby, as shown in the new biography Cosby: His Life and Times. In the book, author Mark Whitaker makes a strong argument that Cosby's comedic style and approach to race issues turned The Cosby Show into television's most quietly subversive program.

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Food
2:16 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

Keeping Heirloom Apples Alive Is 'Like A Chain Letter' Over Many Centuries

Goodband compares these Knobbed Russets to shrunken heads. Others say potatoes or toads. They're all gnarled and warty and brown, but don't be intimidated: They taste great when ripe. They originated in Sussex, England, in 1819.
Melissa Block NPR

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 4:08 pm

It's apple season, and if you go to the supermarket you'll find the usual suspects: Red and Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, MacIntosh. But these big, shiny, perfect apples often look better than they taste. Thankfully, there's a whole world of heirloom apples out there — fruit that may look funky, but tastes fantastic, with flavors unlike any you've tried before.

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Movie Reviews
11:43 am
Fri September 19, 2014

A Detective's 'Walk Among The Tombstones' Is Gripping But Unsatisfying

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Salt
10:05 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Women Can't Make Sushi, And Other Fishy Myths, Busted

One of the delicious tricks we picked up at sushi school: how to make this spicy salmon cucumber and crunchy shrimp roll.
Meredith Rizzo NPR

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 1:45 pm

The once rarefied taste of raw fish has now become an American staple.

Sushi is found at the humblest of supermarkets and on conveyor belt restaurants at the mall.

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TED Radio Hour
8:06 am
Fri September 19, 2014

How Did The Son Of A Terrorist Choose Peace?

"In that instant I realized how much energy it takes to hold that hatred inside of you" — Zak Ebrahim
James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 12:19 pm

Part 1 of TED Radio Hour episode Transformation.

About Zak Ebrahim's TED Talk

Zak Ebrahim is the son of terrorist El-Sayyid Nosair, one of the masterminds of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. He tells the story of being raised to hate and how he chose a very different path.

About Zak Ebrahim

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TED Radio Hour
8:06 am
Fri September 19, 2014

How Can Someone Move Beyond Murder?

"Oftentimes it feels like we're literally talking about another person ... I've had moments where I've cried for that young man that I was" — Shaka Senghor
Brittany Buongiorno TED

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 11:50 am

Part 4 of the TED Radio Hour episode Transformation.

About Shaka Senghor's Talk

At the age of 19, Shaka Senghor was jailed for shooting and killing a man. That event started his years-long journey to redemption.

About Shaka Senghor

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TED Radio Hour
8:06 am
Fri September 19, 2014

How Do You Reveal A Life-Changing Transformation?

"It's one of those moments in your life where you're so conscious about what you're about to do, and what you're about to do will change your life." --€” Geena Rocero
James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 12:22 pm

Part 2 of the TED Radio Hour episode Transformation.

About Geena Rocero's Talk

For most of Geena Rocero's career modeling lingerie and swimsuits, no one knew she was born a boy. Rocero talks about her decision to risk her career and reveal her background.

About Geena Rocero

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Movie Reviews
6:55 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Terry Gilliam Sees Future Through Familiar Eyes In 'The Zero Theorem'

Christoph Waltz plays a genius programmer in The Zero Theorem.
Voltage Pictures

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 7:59 am

Given that Terry Gilliam's The Zero Theorem first screened at the Venice Film Festival last year, it's absolutely coincidental that it's getting a theatrical release in the same season as the Stephen Hawking biopic, The Theory of Everything. Nevertheless, the confluence works well. Both are films about searches for a mathematical theory that will explain all existence — from its beginning in a big bang to, in Zero Theorem at least, its return to a black hole.

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Movie Reviews
6:53 am
Fri September 19, 2014

A Tall And Silly Tale Signifies Nothing In 'Tusk'

In Kevin Smith's best movies — and his worst ones, for that matter — the characters talk a whole lot of nonsense. That's also true of Tusk, the writer-director's second foray into horror. This time, the villain actually follows through on his nutty chatter. But he still spends a lot more time talking than torturing.

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Movie Reviews
6:53 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Crossing The Desert, Making 'Tracks'

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 8:07 am

Scenic and a touch bloodless, Tracks is a tastefully off-Hollywood version of the upcoming Wild. Wild is bound to make a lot more noise, and not just because it has Reese Witherspoon in the lead as a grief-stricken Cheryl Strayed hiking the Pacific Crest Trail to get over her beloved mother's death. Tracks is a little too subdued for its own good.

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Movie Reviews
6:52 am
Fri September 19, 2014

'This Is Where I Leave You' Makes A Family Story Too Ordinary

Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Adam Driver and Corey Stoll play the quarrelsome Altman siblings, each with their own share of emotional baggage.
Nicole Rivelli Warner Brothers Pictures

Originally published on Fri September 19, 2014 7:48 am

Ordinariness is a quality in movies that likely bothers critics and enthusiasts more than it does other people. The more films you see, the more the enemy becomes not just poor quality but familiarity, simply because even an inoffensive cliche becomes a cinematic earworm after a while — something that makes your brain flinch simply at the "this again!" of it all. This Is Where I Leave You, a family comedy-drama adapted by Jonathan Tropper from his 2009 novel, is unfortunately a very ordinary film, particularly for one adapted from such a thoughtful and tonally tricky book.

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Monkey See
6:51 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: A Fall Films Preview And Betting On New Television

NPR

We've had a lively summer on PCHH, full of live events and quizzes and special guests and even Stephen hosting episodes (!) (kidding!), but this week, we've got our pal Bob Mondello in the studio for some good old-fashioned movie and TV chatter.

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Arts/Life
6:00 am
Fri September 19, 2014

New Exhibit Opening At NMSU Las Cruces Museum

  O’odham Himdag: Weaving a Way of Life features forty baskets from the University Museum collection representing works created by historic and contemporary Akimel O’odham (Pima) and Tohono O’odham (Papago) weavers of central and southern Arizona and northern Mexico. The O’odham Himdag, or desert people’s lifeways, encompasses cultural knowledge, values, and beliefs, all which are woven into each basket.

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