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Updated: 54 min 9 sec ago

Remembering Holly Woodlawn, Muse To Lou Reed's 'Wild Side'

Wed, 12/09/2015 - 2:33pm

Woodlawn, the transgender woman who inspired the first verse of Reed's 1973 hit "Walk on the Wild Side," died of cancer Sunday. She was 69. Originally broadcast in 1991.

In 'Bastards Of The Reagan Era' A Poet Says His Generation Was 'Just Lost'

Tue, 12/08/2015 - 12:48pm

After being convicted of carjacking as a teenager, Reginald Dwayne Betts spent eight years in an adult prison. Since his release, he has become a poet and a Yale law student.

From 'Scarface' To 'Sopranos': Remembering Character Actor Robert Loggia

Tue, 12/08/2015 - 12:24pm

Best known for his roles as cops and outlaws, Loggia died Friday from complications related to Alzheimer's disease. He was 85. Originally broadcast in 1987.

'Transparent' Is Transfixing In Season Two

Tue, 12/08/2015 - 4:17am

The acclaimed Amazon show about a transgender woman and her dysfunctional family has just returned for a second season. TV critic Eric Deggans praises the show's drama, nuance and complexity.

NPR's Book Concierge: Our Guide To 2015's Great Reads

Tue, 12/08/2015 - 4:08am

The Book Concierge is back and all new for 2015! Explore more than 260 standout titles picked by NPR staff and critics.

How What Makes You Laugh (And Cringe) Reveals Your Hidden Biases

Mon, 12/07/2015 - 11:04pm

This week on Hidden Brain, Shankar Vedantam looks at what we find funny and what, well, crosses the line. Comedian Bill Burr joins us to talk about why race, gender and Caitlin Jenner can be so funny.

The Past Is Littered With Foods Of The Future

Mon, 12/07/2015 - 4:37pm

For as long as humans have eaten, they've entertained grand visions of the future of food. But the shiny objects of food futurism rarely pan out in the way the visionaries intended.

Andrew Lloyd Webber Says Music Empowers In 'School Of Rock'

Mon, 12/07/2015 - 3:32pm

Lloyd Webber teamed up with Julian Fellowes, creator of Downton Abbey, to create the new rock musical adaptation of the 2003 movie.

A Downtrodden Protagonist Reveals Himself Room-By-Room In 'Hotels Of North America'

Mon, 12/07/2015 - 11:07am

Rick Moody discusses his new novel, which is told solely in the form of online hotel reviews. The narrator of Hotels Of North America is increasingly down on his luck — and may even be homeless.

Maureen Corrigan's Best Books Of 2015: Short(ish) Books That Pack A Big Punch

Mon, 12/07/2015 - 11:07am

This year, short stories and fragmented intense memoirs — along with the incredible true story of a short-haired dog — dominate Maureen Corrigan's best books list.

Anna Deavere Smith Wants Playgoers To Do What They Can To Counter Violence

Mon, 12/07/2015 - 4:43am

Through powerful monologues, Anna Deavere Smith has tackled race riots, integration and health care. In Notes from the Field, she's using her characters to explore the school-to-prison pipeline.

Aristophanes In Chicago: Spike Lee's Ancient Inspiration, On Film

Sun, 12/06/2015 - 4:23pm

Lee's new film, Chiraq, draws on an ancient idea to deal with the present-day crisis of gun violence in Chicago. Natalie Moore of member station WBEZ explains how.

You Can Give A Robot A Paintbrush, But Does It Create Art?

Sun, 12/06/2015 - 8:09am

Pindar Van Arman is a painter — and a software designer. His latest project? A portrait-painting robot. Its paintings "dance on the edge" between creations by humans and machines, he says.

A Vast Archive, Long Closed, Opens Its Doors Again In Jerusalem

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 4:44pm

The century-old Khalidi library holds the largest private manuscript collection in Jerusalem. It closed shortly after the Six-Day War. Now the Khalidis have decided it's time to reopen.

Barbershop: San Bernardino, Chicago And The Yellow Brick Road

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 4:11pm

In the Barbershop, Arsalan Iftikhar, Bridget Johnson and Jimi Izrael discuss the San Bernardino shootings, the shakeups in the Chicago Police Department, and NBC's live production of The Wiz.

One Meme To Rule Them All — And Maybe Get A Man Tossed In Prison?

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 10:34am

A man in Turkey is on trial for creating a meme that compares the character Gollum to Turkey's president. Michael Drough, a Lord of the Rings scholar, talks about whether Gollum is a true villain.

Not My Job: We Ask Actor Jeff Daniels About People Named Steve And Their Jobs

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 10:23am

Daniels portrays former Apple CEO John Sculley in the new film Steve Jobs. We'll ask Daniels about three other people named Steve, and what they do for a living.

Simple Number, Complex Impact: How Many Words Has A Child Heard?

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 9:21am

The Thirty Million Word Initiative, created by University of Chicago Hospital pediatric surgeon Dana Suskind, attempts to close the achievement gap between poorer and more affluent students.

Fresh Air Weekend: HBO's 'Leftovers'; Adele's '25'; Broadway Composer John Kander

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 8:04am

Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta, the co-creators of The Leftovers, discuss the series. Rock critic Ken Tucker weighs in on Adele's popularity. John Kander reflects on a career of Hidden Treasures.

Moment Of Truth In 'Youth' Hits Home For Actor Harvey Keitel

Sat, 12/05/2015 - 6:55am

Harvey Keitel plays a film director spending time at a spa in the Swiss Alps in the movie, "Youth." He talks with NPR's Scott Simon about the production and a chance meeting in Sarajevo, years ago.

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