It's a story right out of the movies: The artistic director of one of the most prestigious ballet companies in the world is violently attacked. His attacker and the motive are shrouded in mystery. But behind these sensational headlines is a ballet company that is both legendary and plagued with scandals and infighting.
There's a lot of talk in politics about the desirability of American manufacturing and "green" jobs. President Obama talks about both often, especially wind turbines and long-lasting batteries that are made on U.S. soil.
Robert Siegel, host of All Things Considered, recently visited a Massachusetts factory that makes a product that hits those same parameters. It's arguably a force for sustainability, nearly 40 Americans assemble it, and it's an interesting case study in innovation: the high-speed hand dryer.
British scientists have discovered something remarkable: Like some of us humans, Eurasian Jays — who share a family with blue jays and ravens — seem to have the ability to recognize and ascertain the "internal life" or psychological states of others.
Palestinian students attend a class in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Sunday.
Credit Tsafrir Abayov / AP
Israeli students attend class at an elementary school in the coastal city of Ashkelon. A U.S.-funded study released Monday said both Israeli and Palestinian textbooks present largely one-sided narratives of their conflict but rarely resort to demonization of the other side.
An expanded version of Fleetwood Mac's 1977 album Rumours comes out this week, to mark the 35th anniversary of one of the top-selling albums of the '70s. The deluxe set includes demos, outtakes from the recording sessions, live recordings and a documentary DVD, along with a vinyl pressing of the original album.
We live in an age of great marriages: William and Kate, Kim and Kanye (oh, wait, she's still married to this guy), Kim and The Next One. Best of all, though, is "The Mac" from Cheesie's, in Chicago. The sandwich weds a classic Grilled Cheese with Mac N' Cheese, in one easy to absorb package.
Ian: I honestly feel like we're five years away from never again having to use the word "or" in America.
Iranian authorities are using cyberpolice units to crack down on people who try to access banned websites, including social media sites such as Facebook. Here, Iranians use computers at an Internet cafe in Tehran in January.
Credit Behrouz Mehri / AFP/Getty Images
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, shown here in 2009, recently set up a Facebook page, though the Iranian government bans ordinary Iranians from access to Facebook and other social media sites.
When Iran's supreme leader got a Facebook page in December, Iranians sat up and blinked.
Some thought it was a fake, finding it hard to believe that Ayatollah Ali Khamenei would be using a technology that his own government blocks. A U.S. State Department spokeswoman skeptically wondered how many "likes" it would attract.
But some of Khamenei's supporters quickly rallied behind the move, which first came to light in a reference on — you guessed it — the ayatollah's Twitter account.
Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 8:53 am
Ken Ward at The Charleston Gazette has a story worth reading about West Virginia's failure to enforce new coal mine dust standards prompted by the deadly explosion three years ago at Massey Energy's Upper Big Branch mine.
Ward used the state's Freedom of Information Act to obtain and review mine safety inspections conducted by the Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training.
Movies like The Shining frighten most of us, but some brain-damaged people feel no fear when they watch a scary film. However, an unseen threat — air with a high level of carbon dioxide — produces a surprising result.
Credit Corey Feinstein / Iowa Neurological Patient Registry, University of Iowa, Courtesy of Nature
In these brain scans, amygdala damage can be seen in three patients (known as SM, AM and BG) with Urbach-Wiethe disease. See the dark spots within the areas circled in red. A healthy person is shown (left) for comparison.
Originally published on Mon February 4, 2013 3:13 pm
Undergoing chemotherapy is an unpleasant and often disruptive experience that can radically transform a cancer patient's life. From nausea and hair loss, to so-called "chemo-brain" and "metal mouth," the side effects can vary drastically and many are unexpected.
In her new book, Sugar in the Blood, Andrea Stuart weaves her family story around the history of slavery and sugar in Barbados. Stuart's great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather landed on the island in the 1630s. He had been a blacksmith in England, but became a sugar planter in Barbados, at a time when demand for the crop was exploding worldwide. Stuart is descended from a slave owner who, several generations after the family landed in Barbados, had relations with an unknown slave.
Egyptian President Anwar Sadat is flanked by senior military officers as he reviews maps of battlefield developments in the 1973 Arab-Israeli War. He's shown at army headquarters in Cairo on Oct. 15, 1973. Egypt and Syria attacked Israel, catching Israel and the CIA off-guard.
Credit Keystone/Hulton Archive / Getty Images
Egyptian soldiers cross to the eastern side of the Suez Canal during the 1973 war. Egyptian forces initially broke through the Israeli forces on that side of the canal.
Israeli soldiers take a break near Suez City in Egypt on Oct. 29, 1973. The Egyptian military made advances against Israeli forces in the first days of the war, but Israel's army eventually recovered.
Government agencies do not often acknowledge their own errors, but the CIA has done just that with the declassification of intelligence memoranda on the 1973 Arab-Israeli War.
The documents show that agency analysts, down to the last minute before the outbreak of fighting, were assuring President Nixon, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and other policymakers that Egypt and Syria were unlikely to attack Israel.
The European Union police organization, Europol, uncovered a massive match-fixing scheme that they say presents "a big problem for the integrity of football in Europe."
As the AP reports, the Europol investigation found "more than 380 suspicious matches — including World Cup and European Championship qualifiers and two Champions League games — and found evidence that a Singapore-based crime group is closely involved in match-fixing."
Yo La Tengo wouldn't seem to be very rock 'n' roll, given that it's a very stable and long-lasting operation. Since 1991, the lineup has consisted of a married couple — drummer Georgia Hubley and guitarist Ira Kaplan, along with bassist James McNew — and all three play additional instruments as needed. Yo La Tengo has been with the same label, Matador, since 1993. But if the band lacks rock dramatics, I would argue that it knows as much about the modes and manners of rock 'n' roll as anyone who has ever played the music.
Singer-songwriter Angelique Kidjo was born in Benin, West Africa. Today, she lives in New York City and is widely considered Africa's greatest living diva.
For Kidjo, music provides an outlet for both activism and pleasure. "Those two things are part of my stability," she tells NPR's Michel Martin. "I need that. No human being has endless compassion, you need to replenish yourself, and I know that if I didn't have music, I'd go crazy."