Arts/Life

TED Radio Hour
8:11 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Is The Human Hand Our Best Technology?

"Only the hand can tell where it's tender, where the patient winces." รขย€ย” Abraham Verghese
James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri August 16, 2013 9:58 am

Part 4 of the TED Radio Hour episode Do We Need Humans?

About Abraham Verghese's TEDTalk

Modern medicine is in danger of losing a powerful, old-fashioned tool: human touch. Physician and writer Abraham Verghese describes our strange new world where patients are data points, and calls for a return to the traditional physical exam.

About Abraham Verghese

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NPR Story
8:00 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Do We Need Humans?

Can we improve technology and preserve human dignity?
Thinkstock

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 12:46 pm

We've been promised a future where robots will be our friends. But are we ready for how those innovations will change us as humans? In this episode, TED speakers consider the promises and perils of our relationship with technology.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Pop Culture
3:12 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Angry Birds TV, Coming To A Mobile Screen Near You

A scene from the upcoming animated series based on the popular game Angry Birds. The show will be distributed to existing users of the digital game.
Rovio

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 9:57 am

People of all ages have been passing the time playing Angry Birds on their mobile devices. Now Rovio, the company that created the best-selling app, is offering fans a new cartoon series based on the game, which has so far been downloaded 1.7 billion times.

The concept behind Angry Birds is extremely simple: There are these colorful cartoon birds that are angry because some green pigs are after their eggs. Players of the digital game use slingshots to catapult the birds โ€” who don't fly โ€” to destroy structures hiding the pigs.

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Movie Reviews
3:18 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

'Ginger & Rosa': Life And Times In Cold War London

Rosa (Alice Englert) and her sometime best friend Ginger (Elle Fanning) are nearly torn apart by the political and social changes of the 1960s.
Nicola Dove A24

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 6:19 pm

Two young actresses with substantial Hollywood pedigrees have the title roles in the new film Ginger & Rosa. Ginger is played by Dakota Fanning's sister, Elle, who at 14 already has more than 30 movie credits. Rosa is played by Alice Englert, daughter of Oscar-winning writer-director Jane Campion and star of last month's Beautiful Creatures. Both actresses get a chance to stretch in Ginger & Rosa.

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Movie Reviews
3:04 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

'The Call': Not The Best Connection

LAPD 911 operator Jordan Turner (Halle Berry) hopes to turn a fatal failure into a final victory after a serial killer tries to claim a second young victim on her watch.
Greg Gayne TriStar Pictures

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 8:43 am

In the buildup to the climax of Brad Anderson's The Call, a character discovers what the film's villain has been doing with all the teenage girls he's been kidnapping and killing. It's a grisly revelation, and it's played for shock value โ€” both for the audience and for the character making the discovery.

There's only one problem: Early in the film, the body of one of these girls is recovered. So the details of the killer's M.O. shouldn't come as any shock whatsoever to the character that discovers his lair.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

'Burt Wonderstone': Vegas, When The Magic Stops

Anton Marvelton (Steve Buscemi) and Burt Wonderstone (Steve Carell) are Vegas magicians whose gimmicky, vintage-style act is no match for their modern audiences.
Ben Glass Warner Bros. Pictures

There are some funny bits and characters around the edges of The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, but its core is empty of humor. In fact, this purported satire of Las Vegas magicians is a three-void circus: the script, the central character and the main performance.

The committee-written screenplay begins with the premise that, 20 years after the illusion-busting Penn and Teller set up in Vegas, there could still be a market for a pair of old-school tricksters who call themselves Burt Wonderstone and Anton Marvelton.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

'60s Japan, Aglow 'From Up On Poppy Hill'

In 1963 Japan, Shun (voiced by Anton Yelchin) and Umi (Sarah Bolger) unite to preserve a beloved old building that serves as a clubhouse for young intellectuals at their seaside community school.
Gkids

Of the many wonderful qualities associated with the films of Studio Ghibli โ€” the Japanese animation house co-founded by Hiyao Miyazaki, the visionary director of My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki's Delivery Service and Spirited Away โ€” serenity may be the most key. Ghibli productions offer the stirring adventures and magical creatures of their American counterparts, and often operate by a wondrously mysterious internal logic, but they do so without feeling compelled to grab a young audience by the lapels.

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Food
2:12 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Molly Malone: A Soup And Song For St. Patrick's Day

Rachel Allen's recipe for Molly Malone's Cockle and Mussel Chowder derives its name from a popular Irish folk song.
David Loftus

Originally published on Tue March 26, 2013 4:48 pm

There's always the temptation of heading to an Irish pub, grabbing a pint of Guinness and chowing down on some cabbage and potatoes when March 17 rolls around.

However, there's much more to Irish cuisine than that, says Rachel Allen, a well-known TV chef in Ireland who is appreciated for her simple, doable recipes that champion the country's fresh produce, meats and seafood.

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Author Interviews
1:24 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Two Awards In One Day For 'Battleborn' Author Claire Vaye Watkins

Claire Vaye Watkins' debut collection of short stories โ€” Battleborn โ€” is informed by her childhood in the West.
Riverhead Books

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 2:19 pm

The 10 stories in Claire Vaye Watkins' debut collection โ€” Battleborn โ€” explore the past and present of the American West, specifically Nevada, where Watkins spent much of her childhood and adolescence. On Wednesday, it was announced that the 28-year-old author had won two major literary prizes for Battleborn: the $10,000 Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the $20,000 Story Prize.

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Media
1:24 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Jake Tapper Takes A Host Chair At CNN

The veteran reporter has recently moved from ABC News to CNN where he now hosts his own show and serves as Chief Washington Correspondent. In Part II of this interview, Tapper talks about fact-checking the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and blow back from the White House after asking tough questions.

Arts & Life
12:07 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

How Dictionary Searches Define Readers

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 12:44 pm

After Vice President Joe Biden used the term "malarkey" in a 2012 debate, searches for the word in online dictionaries surged. Now that dictionaries are readily available with a mouse click or finger tap, dictionary publishers can track the correlation between word searches and current events.

Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Long Before They Were Famous

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:42 am

A long time ago, many people's surnames indicated their occupations. If your name was "Mason," you worked with stone, if your name was "Coleman," you worked with coal, and if your name was "Sanders," you ran a medieval chicken empire. Guest musicians Paul & Storm hint contestants to an occupational surname and a celebrity who bears it.

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Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Small Screen Adaptations

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:42 am

TV shows are sometimes based on popular films, and while some are successful (Buffy The Vampire Slayer) others...not so much (Spaceballs: The Animated Series). Host Ophira Eisenberg has a few of her own ideas in this game, where players must "adapt" movie titles into shorter series versions by removing a letter to form a new, more succinct title.

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Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Blinded Me With Science

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:42 am

Guest troubadours Paul & Storm have emerged from their lab to share their latest experiment. To pay tribute to Thomas Dolby's 1982 New Wave classic "She Blinded Me With Science," the duo has reworked the lyrics to describe different scientific principles and discoveries. So put on your safety goggles and play along!

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Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

For Your I's Only

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:42 am

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Finally, it's what our contestants have been waiting for. Let's bring back our winners to play our Ask Me One More final round.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: From Got Game, we have Max Bernstein. From Blinding Me With Science: Katie Hamill. From Submit It In Reduplicate: Matt Stefani. From Small Screen Adaptations: Brian Devinney. And from Long Before They Were Famous: Megan Schade.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Art Chung, what do you have in store for us?

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Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Jad Abumrad: Accidental Scientist

Jad Abumrad.
Marco Lau

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 9:01 am

  • Listen to Jad play "Accidental Science"
  • Listen To The Interview

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Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Submit It In Reduplicate

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:42 am

Did you know Ke$ha's song "Tik Tok" demonstrates a linguistic oddity? And we're not talking about her spelling. "Reduplicated" words contain repeated syllables, but with different vowel sounds. Puzzle guru Art Chung leads contestants in a game full of reduplicated word pairs, so quit your "chit-chat" and listen in!

Plus, guest music duo Paul & Storm play an extra-special cover of "Splish-Splash."

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Ask Me Another
11:12 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Got Game

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 8:42 am

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Let's bring up our two brave contestants: Sid Solomon and Max Bernstein.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Welcome, Sid. Welcome, Max. So, Max, you are a PhD student in biology.

MAX BERNSTEIN: I am.

EISENBERG: I'm very impressed.

BERNSTEIN: Oh, thank you.

EISENBERG: What are you working on right now, may I ask? What's your project?

BERNSTEIN: I work on population genetics and evolution in microscopic worms.

EISENBERG: No idea what you're talking about, but that sounds crazy.

(LAUGHTER)

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Movies
9:33 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Whatever Happened To The Real Gingers And Rosas?

The '60s London of the unhappy adolescent Ginger (Elle Fanning, with Annette Bening's mentoring May) was more complicated than students Ginger's age understand today. Film writer Ella Taylor, who lived through that decade, came late to an understanding of the toll it took on young women like Ginger.
A24

A few weeks ago, I asked a class of college undergraduates what the 1960s meant to them.

"That flower-power thing?" one young man volunteered brightly.

The further we get from that misunderstood decade, the more the many strands of its rebelliousness get reduced to a pop-culture T-shirt slogan, a cartoon strip starring tie-dyed youth with stoned eyes and floor-mop hair.

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Movie Reviews
8:38 am
Thu March 14, 2013

In 'Philip Roth: Unmasked,' An Unadorned Portrait Of An Aging Master

Novelist Phillip Roth steers clear of provocation in the PBS documentary Philip Roth: Unmasked; he comes across, rather, as sensible, sensitive, maybe a bit cranky but hardly outrageous at all. And his unmistakable voice will ring true, especially for fans.
Eric Thayer Reuters

There's nothing particularly dynamic about Livia Manera and William Karel's documentary Philip Roth: Unmasked. For some 90 minutes, it's pretty much just one guy talking. But what a guy!

Roth is one of the greatest living novelists, possibly even the greatest. He can also be an inflammatory presence, eliciting outrage almost as much as admiration, particularly among women who see him as a misogynist.

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Tender Portraits Of Worn-Down Women In 'This Close'

promo image
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 12:43 pm

Jessica Francis Kane drew considerable attention for her artful historic novel, The Report, which explored the repercussions of a tragic incident in March 1943, when 173 people died while rushing into the Bethnal Green tube station for shelter during an air raid. Her portraits of wartime Londoners were psychologically acute and rich in evocative detail. She applies that same skill to her second collection, This Close, populated by 21st century Americans adrift in an increasingly complicated world.

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Author Interviews
10:44 am
Wed March 13, 2013

A Young Man Gets 'Filthy Rich' Boiling, Bottling Tap Water

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 11:16 am

In his new novel, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, Mohsin Hamid's nameless protagonist is an ambitious young man who moves from the countryside to a megalopolis in search of his fortune. The city is modeled on Lahore, Pakistan, where Hamid was born and partly raised and where โ€” after living in the United States and England โ€” he has now settled with his family.

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Wisdom Watch
9:57 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Write A Little Everyday, You'll Have A Book

Samantha Loomis Paterson

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 9:51 am

Katherine Paterson is the beloved author of many young adult novels, including Jacob Have I Loved, The Great Gilly Hopkins and Bridge to Terabithia.

The American Library Association recently honored her with the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award for her "substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children."

Paterson, who has been writing for a half-century, tells NPR's Michel Martin that despite all the awards she has received throughout the years, this one means a lot.

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Book Reviews
6:31 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Rewriting The Self In Gass' Dense, Difficult 'Middle C'

Piano keys
iStockphoto.com

William H. Gass is a glutton of language. Like a chef who can't cook without nibbling, he lards his own writing with similes and metaphors in the spirit of the books he loves, savoring them through imitation. In his essays on literature, this gusto is contagious. You want to taste his taste, to read what he has read. Gass' exuberant, bursting sentences convey the pleasure of reading and thinking better than just about any written since the New Critics took over criticism in the 1950s.

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The Two-Way
5:17 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Book News: Michael Vick Cancels Book Tour Because Of Threats

Michael Vick of the Philadelphia Eagles on the sidelines during a game against the Arizona Cardinals.
Christian Petersen Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Kitchen Window
12:32 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Outside The Pizza Box: Chicago's New Pie Scene

Emily Hilliard for NPR

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 7:57 am

As we prepare to celebrate Pi(e) Day on Thursday (Congress established March 14 as a day to honor both the mathematical constant, 3.14, and our nation's favorite dessert), we find a burgeoning pie scene in Chicago. And it's not of the deep-dish variety.

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Arts & Life
2:03 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Muses And Metaphor 2013: Tweet Us Your Poetry!

Melanie Taube NPR

Originally published on Mon April 29, 2013 9:50 am

Poetry and social media join forces once again in April. Tell Me More celebrates National Poetry Month with its 3rd annual Muses and Metaphor series. We'll feature poems exchanged via Twitter by NPR fans โ€” always in 140 characters or fewer. Tweet your poem using the hashtag: #TMMPoetry.

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Arts & Life
12:05 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Backstage At The Bolshoi Ballet

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 2:29 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan.

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Book Reviews
12:01 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

'Lean In': Not Much Of A Manifesto, But Still A Win For Women

AP

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 12:19 pm

Sheryl Sandberg tells an anecdote in her new book, Lean In, about sitting down with her boss, Mark Zuckerberg, for her first performance review as chief operating officer at Facebook. Zuckerberg told her that her "desire to be liked by everybody would hold [her] back." I hope she's worked on that problem because over the past few weeks, there sure have been a lot of people hating on Sheryl Sandberg.

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Books
9:43 am
Tue March 12, 2013

First African-American Poet Still Showing New Work

Newly found poem by Jupiter Hammon.
Courtesy of Yale University Libraries

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 2:42 pm

It's the handwriting that stands out to Cedrick May.

As an associate professor of English at the University of Texas, Arlington, he assigned his doctoral students to find some of the known works by Jupiter Hammon, the first published African-American poet. Hammon's works date back to 1760.

What one student ended up finding was a previously unpublished piece by the poet that shows how deeply he thought about slavery and religion.

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