Talk of the Nation on Xtra HD

Monday - Thursday at 5:00pm
Neil Conan

Each day, Talk of the Nation combines the award-winning resources of NPR News with the vital participation of listeners. The result is a spirited and productive exchange of knowledge and insight that delves deeply into the news and ideas of the day.

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Middle East
1:50 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Could Syria's Civil War Become A Large Regional Crisis?

Originally published on Sun May 12, 2013 8:26 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. In a strange way, Barack Obama and Bashar al-Assad find themselves in the same dilemma today: initiate military action that both would prefer to avoid or look weak, even hypocritical. The American president faces a chorus of criticism after he decided to wait for more proof that Syria's government has crossed his red line on chemical weapons, while Syria's president must now decide whether to respond to Israeli airstrikes on his capital or leave his supporters to wonder why not.

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NPR Story
10:49 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Living Inside the Box

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

Here with us now is Flora Lichtman, our correspondent and managing editor for video. Flora, welcome.

FLORA LICHTMAN, BYLINE: Hi.

FLATOW: What wonderful stuff do you have for us this week?

LICHTMAN: Well, from the less practical or the no practical application to the very practical in this week's Video Pick.

FLATOW: Ooh.

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NPR Story
10:49 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Ancient Earth May Have Smelled Like Rotten Eggs

Originally published on Fri May 3, 2013 1:03 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. Imagine stepping onto the Earth two billion years ago, taking a stroll along the shores of an ancient beach near the northern edge of what today is Lake Superior. You wouldn't see any trees. They didn't hit the scene until, oh, another billion-and-a-half years. What you might see, though, if you had a microscope, were tiny bacteria-like organisms on the shore having a ball eating each other.

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NPR Story
10:49 am
Fri May 3, 2013

Scientists Seek To Take The Measure of Antimatter

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY.

Up next, another installment in the continuing quest to understand antimatter, that stuff that's supposed to be the opposite of matter. It's supposed to have been created during the Big Bang in equal amounts as normal matter, but for some reason, it's all disappeared. No one knows why - yeah, that stuff or actually that anti-stuff.

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Medical Treatments
2:23 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Lessons In Emergency Preparedness After Boston Bombings

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Three people died from the blast and shrapnel of the pressure-cooker bombs at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Hundreds more were injured, many severely. But as bad as it was, it could have been much, much worse.

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Poetry
2:20 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

'Poems To Learn By Heart': The Merits Of Memorizing Verse

Caroline Kennedy's other works include of A Family of Poems: My Favorite Poetry for Children and A Patriot's Handbook.
Disney Hyperion Books

Originally published on Fri May 3, 2013 1:17 pm

Caroline Kennedy's latest book comes with an agenda: to encourage a return to poetic memorization and recitation that both families and schools once considered routine.

In Poems to Learn by Heart, Kennedy stresses the importance of memorizing poetry and presents a collection of poems that she believes everyone should internalize.

"I think there's something in it for all ages," she tells NPR's Neal Conan. "I realized this shouldn't be just for kids because older people are the ones that are really working on keeping their memories going strong."

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Digital Life
2:14 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

A Look Ahead At The Future Of Tech

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. Technology's already changed our lives in ways we couldn't have imagined just a few years ago, and now seems ready to reinvent our future. As we continue our series of conversations looking ahead, we've invited Farhad Manjoo to join us - he's Slate's technology columnist and a frequent guest on this program - on the latest gadgets, on the business of consumer electronics and on how we've adapted our lives, our jobs and our manners to all these changes.

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Television
2:25 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Strategy Of Putting Politics On TV

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

Now, you've probably noticed this. Political drama is not confined to just the news on TV these days. We are in an era that is seeing a proliferation of politically themed television and other forms of streaming. And maybe you've also noticed shows like "Veep."

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "VEEP")

JULIA LOUIS-DREYFUS: (as Vice President Selina Meyer) I'm the vice president of the United States, you stupid little (bleep).

DONVAN: And "Alpha House."

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "ALPHA HOUSE")

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Business
2:18 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Quiet Strength Of Introverts In The Workplace

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

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Politics
2:05 pm
Wed May 1, 2013

The Race For South Carolina's Congressional Seat

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm John Donvan in Washington. Mass momentum for Markey, Sanford's ears and what they can't always hear, and Obama's sequester quest for an understanding with the GOP. It is Wednesday and time for a...

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Trapped in a Taylor Swift album...

DONVAN: Edition of the political junkie.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)

PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: There you go again.

VICE PRESIDENT WALTER MONDALE: When I hear your new ideas, I'm reminded of that ad: Where's the beef?

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Pop Culture
2:58 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

To Avoid Or To Embrace? How Actors Navigate Stereotypes

Retta as office manager Donna Meagle on NBC's Parks and Recreation.
Colleen Hayes/NBC

Originally published on Wed May 1, 2013 2:26 pm

On NBC's Parks and Recreation, former stand-up comedian Retta plays office manager Donna Meagle. Donna is mostly in the background of the show, but is known for obsessing over her Mercedes SUV and for creating the Parks and Rec Treat Yo Self holiday.

Retta says this character is quite different from the roles she was offered in the beginning of her acting career.

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NPR Story
2:20 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

'Sign Painters': A Close-Up Focus On An Endangered Art

Marquee painted by Norma Jeanne Maloney on "Honky-tonk Row" in Nashville, Tenn.
Faythe Levine and Sam Macon Princeton Architectural Press

Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 5:31 pm

Before the age of computers and vinyl printers, sign painters worked by hand to illustrate storefronts, billboards and banners. Local craftsmen often developed a signature style that could distinguish a neighborhood, or even a city.

But technology made creating signs less expensive — and less expressive. Sign Painters, a new book and documentary written and directed by Faythe Levine and Sam Macon, focuses on dozens of artists who are keeping the art alive.

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NPR Story
1:59 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

The NBA Has An Openly Gay Player: What Changes?

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 1:40 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan. With just a few words, NBA journeyman Jason Collins made sports history. "I'm a 34-year-old NBA center. I'm black, and I'm gay." With that announcement in the May 6th edition of Sports Illustrated, Collins became the first man still active in a major team sport to come out.

Most reaction has been positive. Earlier today, President Obama actually returned to the microphones at the end of that news conference to say a few words.

(SOUNDBITE OF NEWS CONFERENCE)

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NPR Story
1:49 pm
Tue April 30, 2013

An Intimate Portrait Of The Tsarnaev Family

Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 2:58 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. As the investigation continues into the Boston Marathon bombings, countless questions remain about the two prime suspects, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. This past Sunday, the Washington Post ran a long profile that offers a complicated portrait of the family.

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The Opinion Page
2:16 pm
Mon April 29, 2013

Op-Ed: Did Boston Law Enforcement Drop The Ball?

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan.

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