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4:59 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

A Personal 'Report From The Interior' Of Author Paul Auster

A prolific author, Paul Auster has published dozens of works of fiction, nonfiction and poetry.
Lotte Hansen Courtesy of Henry Holt & Co.

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 1:32 pm

Fans of the writer Paul Auster know an enormous amount about him. His novels often draw on autobiographical details, and he has written five books that are explicitly about his own life.

Last year, he published a memoir called Winter Journal that tells the story of his life through the story of his own body — every scar and blemish. Now Auster has published a companion autobiography of his intellectual self, called Report from the Interior.

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NPR Story
4:59 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

FDA Fighting The Antibiotic Backlash In U.S. Meat

Originally published on Sun December 15, 2013 6:03 pm

This week, the Food and Drug Administration proposed a voluntary program to help reduce the use of antibiotics in animals raised for their meat. As the use of these drugs has increased, so has the incidence of drug-resistant bacteria. So the FDA is concerned about the public health impact of the use of these antibiotics. Arun Rath speaks with Maryn McKenna about the plan, and how it might work. McKenna writes for Wired Magazine and is the author of Superbug: The Fatal Menace of MRSA.

NPR Story
4:59 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

Firing Of Presidential Cabinet Members A Rarity

Originally published on Sun December 15, 2013 6:03 pm

This past week, the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, testified once more before Congress about the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Because of the rocky rollout of that law, some in Congress and in the media have said Sebelius should lose her job. Sebelius is not the first member of President Obama's cabinet member to hear that demand In fact, several members of the cabinet have heard calls for their resignation. But according to presidential historian Michael Beschloss, presidents very rarely go so far as to fire a cabinet member.

NPR Story
4:59 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

How Nelson Mandela Inspired South Africa's Music

Originally published on Sun December 15, 2013 6:03 pm

Arun Rath speaks with pianist and composer Abdullah Ibrahim about the passing of Nelson Mandela and his influence on the South African music scene.

NPR Story
4:59 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

Nelson Mandela Laid To Rest In Hometown

Originally published on Sun December 15, 2013 6:03 pm

Thousands gathered in Nelson Mandela's rural homestead of Qunu as the anti-apartheid hero, Nobel laureate and South Africa's first black president was laid to rest.

The Two-Way
3:58 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

Top French Officials Won't Attend Sochi Olympics

Olympic rings stand in front of the airport in Adler outside Sochi on November 30, 2013.
Yuri Kadobnov AFP/Getty Images

French President François Hollande will not attend the Sochi Olympics in Russia this February, the country's foreign minister said today.

As The Guardian reports, in an interview with Europe 1 radio, Laurent Fabius said the country would not send any top officials to the Games, but did not offer any explanation as to why.

The BBC adds:

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The Protojournalist
3:11 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

Project Xpat: When Do You Become An 'Immigrant'?

iStockphoto

You are an American living in another country. Are you a tourist? An expatriate? An immigrant?

When does a visitor morph into something more? When does your home-away-from-home become your home?

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All Tech Considered
3:05 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

U.S. Recognizes A South Korean StarCraft Player As An Athlete

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 12:15 pm

South Korean Kim Dong-hwan, a professional StarCraft II player, has received a special U.S. visa, normally reserved for baseball players and other athletes.

The five-year P-1A visa given to the video game player last week is for "internationally recognized athletes." This follows another visa given to a Canadian League of Legends player earlier this summer.

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The Two-Way
1:50 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

Peter O'Toole, Star Of 'Lawrence Of Arabia,' Dies

Actor Peter O'Toole performed on stage and on film in many leading roles, and began his acting career in the 1950s when he was serving in the Navy. He died on Dec. 14 at the age of 81.
David Montgomery Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 10:05 am

Peter O'Toole, the legendary Hollywood star made famous by his leading role in 1962's Lawrence of Arabia, died on Saturday, his agent Steve Kenis said.

O'Toole went on to be recognized as one of the premiere actors of his generation. He was nominated for eight Oscars, but never won until he was given an honorary honor in 2003.

O'Toole was born in Ireland and grew up in Leeds, Yorkshire. O'Toole honed his acting chops in the London theater, before he beat out Marlon Brando and Albert Finney for the role of Lawrence of Arabia.

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The Two-Way
12:53 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

In Executing His Uncle, Kim Jong Un Sends Tough Message

The sun rises over the Sino-Korean Friendship Bridge, which spans the Yalu River and leads into North Korea (background), at the Chinese border town of Dandong.
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun December 22, 2013 12:55 pm

The wife of a top North Korean official who was executed last week appears to have survived the latest political purge in Pyongyang.

Kim Kyong Hui, who is also the aunt of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, was named to an official funeral committee on Saturday. Analysts took it as a sign that she still retains power in the inner circle of North Korean leadership.

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The Two-Way
12:30 pm
Sun December 15, 2013

Sen. John McCain Addresses Anti-Government Protesters In Kiev

Sen. John McCain waves to protestors during a mass rally of the opposition at Independence Square in Kiev on Sunday.
Genya Savilov AFP/Getty Images

Anti-government protesters in Kiev, Ukraine, got a boost from Sen. John McCain today.

The Arizona Republican, who was accompanied by Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy, of Connecticut, said he was at Independence Square to speak on behalf of the American people.

"To all Ukrainians, America stands with you," McCain said, as the crowd roared.

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Africa
11:27 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Mandela Is Laid To Rest In His Beloved Village

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin.

Today was the final goodbye. South Africans and visitors from around the world, including world leaders and celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Richard Branson, descended on the village of Qunu in South Africa's Eastern Cape to bury Nelson Mandela. Of the week long farewell to Mandela, this state funeral in a underdeveloped rural village was arguably the biggest logistical challenge.

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Music
11:27 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Two Decades Out Of Ghastly Violence, Rwanda Sings Of Love

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Rwanda is a young nation. Some 80 percent of the population there is under the age of 35. That means most of them weren't even teenagers when the country endured the genocide that killed hundreds of thousands almost 20 years ago. President Paul Kagame is credited with rebuilding the African country's government and economy. But young people, call them the post-reconstruction generation, can take credit for reconstructing something else: Rwanda's music scene.

Baz Dreisinger reports.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "BELLA")

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World
11:27 am
Sun December 15, 2013

No Sign Of Closing Up Shop At Guantanamo

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Around the Nation
11:27 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Cincinnati Wants A Hippo For Christmas

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

All the Cincinnati Zoo wants for Christmas is a hippopotamus.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "I WANT A HIPPOPOTAMUS FOR CHRISTMAS")

CHORUS: (Singing) I want a hippopotamus for Christmas. If only a hippopotamus...

MARTIN: Thane Maynard is the director of the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden. He joins me from Cincinnati to talk about the newest item on the zoo's wish list. Welcome to the program, Thane.

THANE MAYNARD: Rachel, thanks very much.

MARTIN: So, let's get right to it: why a hippo?

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Race
11:27 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Random Street Assaults: Are They Part Of A Larger Game?

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. In the last few weeks, depending on what you're been watching or reading, you may have heard about the so-called knockout game.

(SOUNDBITE OF NEWS BROADCAST)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Can you imagine just walking down the street minding your own business when someone punches you in the face for no reason at all? It's called the knockout game.

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The Two-Way
10:59 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Iran Says It Will Keep Negotiating, Despite Tightening Of Sanctions

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.
Atta Kenare AFP/Getty Images

Iran says it will continue to negotiate over its nuclear program, despite a U.S. decision to expand its blacklist to include more than a dozen firms doing business with Iran's national tanker company.

Iran, if you remember, struck a temporary six-month deal with world powers that paused some aspects of its nuclear program in exchange for some sanctions relief. Iran had said that any new sanctions would kill the prospects for a long-term deal.

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Louisiana Artist Behind 'Blue Dog' Paintings Dies At 69

Artist George Rodrigue looks at one painting of the three-canvas series titled "Three Coins in the Fountain" in 2010.
Brett Duke The Times-Picayune /Landov

George Rodrigue, the artist who transformed the image of Louisiana's loup-garou into a pop art icon, died on Saturday after a battle with cancer.

Rodrigue took the legend of the Cajun werewolf and transformed it into instantly recognizable portraits of a quizzical blue dog framed by different landscapes.

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The Salt
8:43 am
Sun December 15, 2013

Sriracha: First, The Crisis. Now, The Movie

Can't get enough of Sriracha? Now it can fill your belly and your screens.
Nick Ut AP

Originally published on Tue December 17, 2013 2:20 pm

Lately, it seems as if news about Sriracha has been as ubiquitous as the much-loved hot sauce itself.

First, there was the panic over a potential shortage, after a judge ordered the California factory where Sriracha is made to partially shut down, as our friends on the Two-Way blog have reported.

Now, this red hot culinary phenomenon is starring in its own documentary.

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Author Interviews
8:29 am
Sun December 15, 2013

54 Days In The Eternal City: A Christian 'Pilgrimage' For Lent

Rome's St. Zeno chapel was built by Pope St. Paschal I in honor of his mother. The ceiling, a gold mosaic, was intended as an interpretation of heaven.
Stephen Weigel Courtesy of Basic Books

Originally published on Wed December 18, 2013 12:31 am

Each year, millions of people from different faiths make religious journeys. They travel far, to Mecca, Jerusalem, the Ganges River or Lourdes, France, to walk the paths of prophets, saints and martyrs.

"Pilgrimage is something built into the human condition," says George Weigel, author of Roman Pilgrimage: The Station Churches. "There seems to be something hardwired into us, spiritually, that the idea of a journey from A to B becomes part of the rhythm of the spiritual life."

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