In the introduction to his book, Savage Continent, Keith Lowe writes:
Imagine a world without institutions. No governments. No school or universities. No access to any information. No banks. Money no longer has any worth. There are no shops, because no one has anything to sell. Law and order are virtually non-existent because there is no police force and no judiciary. Men with weapons roam the streets taking what they want. Women of all classes and ages prostitute themselves for food and protection.
In general terms, there are two eras that characterize the 200,000 years or so of human presence on Earth: first, and for most of this time, the hunter-gatherers, nomadic groups that roamed the land in search of food and shelter. Then came what we call "civilization," product of the fixation of larger groups around fertile areas. Presumably, the first were the Natufians some time around 10,000 BCE, along the swath of land between Israel and Jordan.
Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 1:35 pm
Note added on Aug. 23, 2013: When we wrote this post and its headline — "Sales Of New Homes Rise Again, Hit Five-Year High" — the data said that was true. Now, the agencies that produce the numbers have issued revisions that indicate sales of new homes in June were the second-best in the last five years. Go here to read about that.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, Oliver "Tuku" Mtukudzi is a legend, not just in his native Zimbabwe, but all over the world. He's 60 years old and he's now put out more albums than he's had birthdays. He joins us in studio for a very special performance chat. He'll talk about the tragedy that inspired his latest album and he'll play some songs for us, as well. That's in just a few minutes. But first, we want to continue this discussion about immigration.
Jorge Ramos anchors the top-ranked newscast on Spanish-language TV, Noticiero Univision, alongside Maria Elena Salinas. Sometimes called "the Spanish-language Walter Cronkite," Ramos has been a vocal — and influential — proponent of an immigration overhaul. (In recent summers, Ramos' network Univision has topped the prime-time TV ratings for all networks in the U.S.
Roberto Francisco Daniel, widely known as Padre Beto, was excommunicated by the Catholic Church for his views on gay marriage and other hot-button issues. The former priest says the church must adapt to a changing world.
His name is Roberto Francisco Daniel, but he goes by Padre Beto. He sports an ear clip, and a rosary around his neck that dips into an open-necked patterned shirt. In short, Padre Beto looks cooler than your typical priest.
His decision to become a Catholic priest came late, he says. He was 28. He'd been to college, worked, and he wasn't a virgin. He says he thinks that's why he has a different way of looking at church doctrine.
Menthol gives cough drops, lip balm and other drugstore remedies that cool minty taste and slight numbing quality. Now the Food and Drug Administration has taken a long-awaited step toward saying that in cigarettes, those same qualities do more harm than good.
Originally published on Thu August 1, 2013 1:11 pm
Sometimes it feels like this country is so torn apart by political partisanship that people from the two major parties just cannot agree on anything — including food.
In an attempt to find commonalities, we are putting together recipes for a Culture War Cookbook. If folks from both sides of the aisle can sidle up to a table together and appreciate each other's victuals, maybe they can eventually learn to appreciate each other's viewpoints.
Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 12:04 pm
Monkey See contributor/longtime nerd Glen Weldon recently attended San Diego Comic-Con. He kept a diary during one of the largest media events in the world.
8:28 p.m.: Jennifer and Matthew Holm are an adorable brother-sister team. They are standing at a podium less than 6 feet away from me and thanking their publisher, because their charming book, Babymouse for President, has just won the Eisner for Best Publication for Early Readers.
For the next two-plus weeks, I'll be in California, hearing all about the next six months in television. It's the annual press tour of the Television Critics Association, and it's always a combination of interesting discussions, weird little stories, and increasingly punchy critics.
You can see, for instance, all of last year's coverage here.
NPR's business news starts with Boeing flying high.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
GREENE: The aircraft maker says its latest quarterly earnings rose a surprising 13 percent this quarter, despite all the troubles with the new 787 Dreamliner. Boeing said today revenues were up due to increased sales of its commercial jets, including Dreamliners and 737s.
Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 12:01 pm
Throughout the summer we're searching for the "Great American Symphony." It's not exactly a popularity contest. Instead, we're pondering American symphonic music from both the past and the present. Some composers like the young Kevin Puts and the veteran Martin Boykan, are labeling their pieces as symphonies. Others, like Michael Daugherty, can prefer more playful titles.