Talk of the Nation from NPR

Mon-Thurs 2PM-3PM
Neal Conan

Talk of the Nation offers call-in listeners the opportunity to join enlightening discussions with decision-makers, authors, academicians, and artists from around the world.

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Race
2:28 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

The Politics Of Fat In Black And White

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Alice Randall is also the author of The Wind Done Gone.
Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 12:13 pm

"Many black women are fat because we want to be." With those words in a New York Times op-ed, novelist Alice Randall sparked a controversy. Touching on flashpoints of race, weight, politics and gender, her contention prompted a debate and raised serious questions about health, culture and race.

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Law
2:24 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

'Stop And Frisk' Works, But It's Problematic

Originally published on Wed May 16, 2012 10:07 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

The New York City police reported that its officers stopped and frisked almost 700,000 people last year, which prompted a fresh round of protests over the controversial policy. In today's Washington Post, Richard Cohen writes that these questionable tactics have to be measured against their effects. New York City is heaven on earth, he wrote, possibly because it is a certain kind of hell for young black and Hispanic men. Do results justify questionable police tactics?

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NPR Story
2:17 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

At 96, Historian Lewis Reflects On 'A Century'

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Bernard Lewis is also the author of the best-selling What Went Wrong?
Alan Kolc

Originally published on Sun May 20, 2012 8:42 am

Over his long academic career, Bernard Lewis has arguably become the world's greatest historian of the Middle East. Now, at 96, Lewis turns his attention inward in a memoir that looks back on his life, work and legacy.

The linguist and scholar's career began before World War II, and in a new memoir he covers more than a few sensitive areas, from race and slavery in Islam, to the clash of civilizations and his long argument with scholar Edward Said, to his role as an adviser to former Vice President Dick Cheney.

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Opinion
2:52 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Op-Ed: Euro Crisis 'Uniquely Greek'

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

And now, the Opinion Page. Markets around the world continue to fall. After losing ground several days in a row, the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 80 points at last glance as the political stalemate drags on in Greece. A final push is set to begin tomorrow in Athens to form a coalition government after elections that served as an angry rebuke of austerity by Greek voters. Analysts are increasingly concerned that Greece's political paralysis may lead that country to leave the eurozone and head towards default.

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NPR Story
2:27 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Teddy Roosevelt's 'Shocking' Dinner With Washington

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 10:35 am

In 1901, President Theodore Roosevelt invited African-American educator Booker T. Washington, who had become close to the president, to dine with his family at the White House. Several other presidents had invited African-Americans to meetings at the White House, but never to a meal. And in 1901, segregation was law.

News of the dinner between a former slave and the president of the United States became a national sensation. The subject of inflammatory articles and cartoons, it shifted the national conversation around race at the time.

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Education
2:11 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

Third Grade A Pivotal Time In Students' Lives

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 2:52 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. The age of eight or nine, when kids complete third grade, represents a key turning point. Up until then, children are learning to read. Afterwards, they read to learn. Many educators believe that kids who can't read should be held back, and several states use standardized tests. Kids who don't pass are automatically held back, or retained.

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Politics
2:07 pm
Mon May 14, 2012

The Job: Dig Up Dirt On Politicians

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 2:52 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Every politician knows that a drunk driving charge or a secret lover can come back to haunt come campaign time, but so can an unfortunate turn of phrase in an interview decades-old, a now-outdated policy position, a master's thesis or even, as Mitt Romney learned this past weekend, high school pranks that may have gone too far.

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Environment
1:50 pm
Fri May 11, 2012

'The Garbage-Men' Rock A Trashy Sound

The Garbage-Men is a band of high school-aged musicians who play instruments made out of recycled cereal boxes, buckets, and other materials they've rescued from the trash. Guitarist Jack Berry and drummer Ollie Gray talk about the band and their signature "trashy" sound.

Health
1:47 pm
Fri May 11, 2012

Tracking The Spread Of A Nasty Virus

When members of a travel soccer team in Oregon fell ill last year, the details of how the disease spread through the team were mysterious. Kimberly Repp, an epidemiologist in Washington County, Oregon, describes the medical detective work that led epidemiologists through the chain of transmission of the norovirus.

Fitness & Nutrition
1:43 pm
Fri May 11, 2012

Sizing Up Americans In 'The Weight Of The Nation'

A new four-part documentary airing on HBO next week looks at America's growing weight problem. John Hoffman, vice president of HBO Documentary Films and executive producer of The Weight Of The Nation, describes his three year-project to document the causes and effects of being overweight and obese in America.

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