Psychologist Steven Pinker describes how far we've come in understanding how both nature and nurture make us ... us.
Biochemist Sam Sternberg describes how recent developments in gene editing technology may help end many diseases and even control our own evolution.
NPR's Alix Spiegel, co-host of the podcast and program Invisibilia, tells the story of a robbery that was halted when a woman decided to respond to the threat in an unexpected way — with kindness.
Scientists have long assumed that farming began among one group in the Mideast. But a new study suggests a more diverse origin story.
Muslim youths in Denmark were leaving to join ISIS in Syria, feeling they were being persecuted in Europe. Then the police in Aarhus responded in a completely unexpected way: They apologized.
Scientists have evidence that the epidemic in Latin America may have started to subside. But the U.S. isn't out of the woods yet.
A new study looks at the link between racial bias and the Tea Party. Researchers found that people who looked at images of Barack Obama that were edited to make his skin look darker were more likely to express support for the Tea Party.
Neil Hammerschlag has looked inside the mouth of a wild tiger shark and lived to tell the tale. He says that sharks pose only a very small risk to people: "Humans are not on the shark's menu."
Little kids who hit the sack early may be less likely to get overtired and fussy in a way that messes with their sleep cycle, researchers say.
Researchers in Seattle have created a public observatory for studying the visual circuitry in a mouse's brain. Among the attractions: watching 18,000 neurons respond to Orson Welles' Touch of Evil.
A new study finds people who are well-hydrated have lower body weights and lower odds of obesity. It adds evidence to the theory that drinking lots of water may help in weight management.
In 2014, after disastrous spills and opposition from environmentalists, the Environmental Protection Agency imposed new rules on the storage of coal ash. Now utilities are planning to close down the ponds that hold the toxic ash, but it has to go somewhere. Environmentalists say the safest place for it is in securely lined landfills, such as the municipal landfill in Wayne County, Ga. Locals are fighting the plan, but there's not much they can do.
Despite government policies designed to encourage health coverage for these toddlers, many families are thwarted by confusing rules and regulations, advocacy groups say.
And they're not unplugging from email and text messages when they do get away, an NPR poll finds. "So they're taking their stress along with them wherever they go," says a Harvard scientist.
There are plenty of proven techniques that can help parents soothe the sting of the needle. And guess what? The parent's attitude can matter more than the actual pain of the shot.
Researchers fed a program 600 hours of videos and TV shows to see if it could learn about and predict human interactions — hugs, kisses, high-fives and handshakes. It was right nearly half the time.
President Obama has tried to diversify the federal judiciary by appointing more black judges. Data show black federal district judges are overturned on appeal 10 percent more often than white judges.
Shankar talks with psychologist Jean Twenge about narcissism, millennials, and the rise of "me" culture.
Scientists who have been tracking cloud patterns over the past two decades say the shifts they're seeing seem to correlate closely with what's predicted by computer models of Earth's changing climate.
When it comes to produce, the answer is yes, experts tell us. But the reasons are complicated — and sometimes mysterious even to restaurant critics, chefs and food scientists.