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Updated: 1 hour 53 min ago

Yaya Alafia's Songs Of Strength For Her Baby Boy

Wed, 04/23/2014 - 10:23am

2013 was a big year for actress and model Yaya Alafia. She starred in three films and had a baby boy. Alafia shares the songs reflecting those experiences for Tell Me More's series 'In Your Ear.'

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In Tasmania, A Food Bounty As Spectacular As The Scenery

Wed, 04/23/2014 - 7:53am

The Australian state known for its marsupial "devil" has a local food scene that might be described as heavenly. If you can't try it person, get a taste with these Tasmania-inspired recipes.

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What Do 'The Simpsons' Look Like In Lego?

Wed, 04/23/2014 - 7:47am

Fox has started releasing images from an upcoming episode of The Simpsons that renders the family in Lego pieces. And as always, all rights are carefully reserved.

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Book News: Gabriel García Márquez Left An Unpublished Manuscript

Wed, 04/23/2014 - 7:09am

Also: a previously unpublished story by Shirley Jackson; tips to tell whether you are in a Charles Dickens novel.

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Better (?) Living Through Chemistry In 'Afterparty'

Wed, 04/23/2014 - 6:03am

Darryl Gregory's new novel, Afterparty, envisions a future where anyone with the right gear can make his own custom drugs. Critic Jason Sheehan calls it a juicy jumble of second-generation biopunk.

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As Shakespeare Turns 450, 'Hamlet' Tour Makes The World A Stage

Wed, 04/23/2014 - 3:33am

Shakespeare's Globe Theater aims to take the Bard's iconic play to every country in the world. They'll perform everywhere from prestigious theaters to Pacific island beaches.

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Book Review: 'In Praise Of Hatred'

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 3:06pm

Alan Cheuse reviews the novel In Praise of Hatred, by Khaled Khalifa. The book, which was recently translated to English, features a young Muslim girl in 1980s Syria.

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'Inside Amy Schumer,' Some Surprising Commentary

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 3:06pm

NPR's TV critic, Eric Deggans, says Comedy Central's Amy Schumer stands out by using her own sex appeal to challenge double standards about women — and, of course, she's funny.

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'Forcing The Spring' Tells One Chapter In Story Of Marriage Equality

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 2:51pm

The strategy of going to the Supreme Court to challenge Proposition 8 was controversial within the gay rights movement. Now, Jo Becker's new book is proving to be controversial as well.

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New Mix: The Antlers, EMA, Yann Tiersen, Sturgill Simpson, More

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 12:33pm

On this week's show, hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton ask big questions about the world we live in via new music from the singer known as EMA, a head-turning cut from the young country crooner Sturgill Simpson and more.

 

EMA's beat-heavy "Neruomancer" takes a critical look at the state of humanity in a world dominated by narcissistic social media and virtual realties. Sturgill Simpson's "Turtles All The Way Down" is a strange and transfixing ode to other dimensions, space, time, reptile alien autopsies and other curiosities in his endless search for meaning in the universe. They're probably not the first things you think of when considering contemporary country music.

 

Not everything on the show is so existential. There's a gorgeous, soaring new song from The Antlers; idiosyncratic folk singer Jolie Holland decides to plug-in her guitar; The San Francisco-based band Papercuts has a sweetly shimmering piano pop song full of hope and wistful melancholy and French orchestra-pop artist Yann Tiersen returns with a batch of broody tunes that start small and dark, but bloom into big and bright wonder.

'Cuddly Toy' On Nonstop Rotation For Margaret Cho

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 11:35am

Comedienne and actress Margaret Cho shares some of her favorite songs for Tell Me More's series "In Your Ear."

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Waxing Poetic About Politics And Jimmy Choos

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 11:35am

Tell Me More continues its national poetry month series "Muses and Metaphor." Regular contributors Mikki Kendall and Bridget Johnson share their Twitter poems.

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Book News: Ex-Supreme Court Justice Wants 6 Changes To Constitution

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 7:13am

Also: The battle over the word "literally," Claudia Rankine won the $50,000 Jackson Poetry Prize.

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'Chameleon Club' Takes On Too Many Colors

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 6:03am

Francine Prose's new Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 concerns itself with the malleability of truth — but stumbles with characters who are flamboyantly quirky, rather than truly engaging.

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Exclusive First Read: Colson Whitehead's 'The Noble Hustle'

Tue, 04/22/2014 - 6:01am

Colson Whitehead's account of his anhedonic adventures at the World Series of Poker is tough and tasty — like a good piece of beef jerky.

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The Tawdry Ballad Of A Man, A Casino And A Game Of Chance

Mon, 04/21/2014 - 4:28pm

The Ballad of a Small Player is set in the murky underworld of Macau's casinos. Reviewer Tash Aw calls the novel a masterful and thrilling collision of old Asia and 21st century glamour.

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For Comic Hari Kondabolu, Explaining The Joke IS The Joke

Mon, 04/21/2014 - 1:14pm

Many comedians think that explaining jokes ruins jokes, but Hari Kondabolu doesn't mind. Especially when it comes to jokes about race and ethnicity, he's willing to explain until everyone gets it.

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Library Of Congress, How Could You Forget Run-D.M.C?

Mon, 04/21/2014 - 11:21am

The Library of Congress recently added 25 new recordings to its National Recording Registry, but none of them were hip-hop or rap songs. Did it miss a beat?

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Shirley, This Is The Dawn Of A New 'Mad Men'

Mon, 04/21/2014 - 8:21am

Sunday night's episode capitalized at last on the show's notoriously ambivalent, slow-burning approach to paying any attention to race.

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Book News: 'Rabbit-Proof Fence' Author Doris Pilkington Garimara Dies

Mon, 04/21/2014 - 6:34am

Also: a poem by Michele Glazer; the best books coming out this week.

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