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Updated: 26 min 40 sec ago

Beyond Charity: Turning The Soup Kitchen Upside Down

Sat, 09/20/2014 - 6:03am

For 25 years, DC Central Kitchen has been a place for the hungry to feed themselves and learn new skills. Now a bustling social enterprise, it's inspired similar programs across the nation.

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Bolano's Newly Translated Novel Wrests Beauty From Despair

Sat, 09/20/2014 - 6:03am

A Little Lumpen Novelita is an intoxicating tale of a teenage girl who struggles to stay afloat. It cements Roberto Bolano's place as the most commanding Latin American writer of the last few decades.

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

Sat, 09/20/2014 - 4:11am

In a new book, journalist Jenny Nordberg writes about the bacha posh, young girls who dress up like boys to enjoy the freedoms of being an Afghan male for as long as they can.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 4:26pm

Tuesday is the first day of fall. This time of year reminds critic Abigail Deutsch of Stephen Dobyns' "How to Like It" — a poem about a man who ponders his lost summers and fleeting dreams.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 4:25pm

It's the start of the season and the NFL is already beset by scandal. Writer Mark Chiusano recommends a novel about football's place in American culture, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 3:15pm

As The Cosby Show celebrates its 30th birthday, NPR's Eric Deggans talks with the author of a new Bill Cosby biography on how the show and the comedian have shaped perceptions of black families.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 3:09pm

Scott Farm in Vermont grows 100 apple varieties, some of them dating back to the 1700s. These apples may not look as pretty as the Red Delicious, but what they lack in looks they make up for in taste.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 12:43pm

In the '70s, novelist Lawrence Block created New York private investigator Matthew Scudder who chases extreme bad guys. Liam Neeson now plays the character the new grisly film directed by Scott Frank.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 11:05am

Sushi is supposed to be eaten at room temperature and right after it's made. So why are we buying out of the cold case at the supermarket? And where are all the women sushi chefs?

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How Can Someone Move Beyond Murder?

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 8:58am

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

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How Do You Reveal A Life-Changing Transformation?

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 8:58am

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.

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How Did The Son Of A Terrorist Chose Peace?

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 8:58am

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.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:55am

Terry Gilliam's latest sci-fi drama stars Christoph Waltz as a computer whiz working to decipher the titular equation. But the film's future is disappointingly similar to those we've seen many times.

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A Tall And Silly Tale Signifies Nothing In 'Tusk'

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:53am

Kevin Smith's horror story about a podcaster who gets his kicks by humiliating others winds up making primarily its own director and cast look bad.

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Crossing The Desert, Making 'Tracks'

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:53am

Mia Wasikowska takes a long and lonely trek across the Australian desert in a film that leaves her character a bit unformed, but features a strong central performance and a surprising friendship.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:52am

The new comedy-drama brings four siblings — and one strong cast — together to mourn, but it rarely manages to rise above the ordinary, with one exception.

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

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 7:51am

On this week's show, we look back on the Toronto International Film Festival, then ahead to the fall season of new television.

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Cartoonist Alison Bechdel Awarded MacArthur Fellowship

Fri, 09/19/2014 - 4:02am

She is one of the first cartoonists to be recognized. Besides her graphic novels and memoirs, Bechdel developed a simple three-question test for how women are represented in films.

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Look, Mom, I Finally Made It To Broadway!

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 4:52pm

NPR's Michel Martin will sit down with a panel of award-winning playwrights to ask about diversity in theater. Follow here or join us on Twitter on Friday at 7 p.m. ET, using #NPRMichel.

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New Show 'Madam Secretary' Suffers In Comparison With 'The Good Wife'

Thu, 09/18/2014 - 2:42pm

The CBS dramas about women juggling family lives and high-intensity jobs showcase excellent acting. But while The Good Wife is one of the best shows on TV, Madam Secretary's writing is disappointing.

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