culture

Krulwich Wonders...
11:47 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Can It Be? Parrots Name Their Children, And Those Names, Like Ours, Stick For Life

LabofOrnithology YouTube

Originally published on Wed April 16, 2014 10:56 am

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Where We Live
8:52 am
Mon April 14, 2014

The Success and Failure of Design; a Conversation with Medea Benjamin

According to design writer Alice Rawsthorn, design is one of the most powerful forces in our lives.
Credit bradhoc / Creative Commons

This hour, we take a look at design and the impact it has on our lives. Longtime design critic and author Alice Rawsthorn joins us along with Dr. Henry Petroski of Duke University to talk about the good design that helps us, and bad design that hinders us in our daily routines.

Later, we talk to CodePink co-founder Medea Benjamin about her work as a political activist and author. Her latest book is called Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control.

GUESTS:

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Code Switch
3:25 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

How Stereotypes Explain Everything And Nothing At All

The City College of New York basketball team in 1932.
New York Daily News Archive New York Daily News via Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 9, 2014 5:10 pm

A few days ago, I wrote a post in which I was mulling just why so few Asian-Americans played Division I basketball in the 2012-2013 season. The numbers were striking. Of the 5,380 men's players in the top tier of college basketball, only 15 were Asian-American. Asian-American ballers weren't just underrepresented. They were practically invisible.

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A Blog Supreme
1:36 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

5 Points Where Poetry Meets Jazz

Jayne Cortez in 1996. The poet often recorded her poems to improvised music.
Bob Berg Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 11, 2014 12:10 pm

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Code Switch
1:36 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Poetic Take On Black Boxer Lands Punches With Broad Appeal

In the ring, Johnson was a master of defense, with a powerful knockout punch and an unprecedented talent for talking trash.
Topical Press Agency Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 11, 2014 10:30 am

April is National Poetry Month, and Code Switch is celebrating by writing about great poets of color and their poems that address issues of race, culture and ethnicity. We began the series with an invitation to our readers to help us build a collaborative poem.

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Kudiyattam
10:45 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Indian Actors Dust Off Ancient Sanskrit Drama at Yale

Kudiyattam is the last surviving form of classic Sanskrit theater.
sreenisreedharan Creative Commons

A troupe of actors from Kerala, India will perform an ancient, traditional drama known as Kudiyattam this weekend in New Haven.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
3:03 pm
Wed April 2, 2014

Celebrating the Ninth Annual Trinity Hip Hop Festival

Self Suffice the Rap Poet is a nationally performing positive teaching artist.
Chion Wolf WNPR

When I say "hip hop," do you think about an art form the exalts bling, consumption, excess, decadence, and vulgarity? What about all the other hip hop artists, exploring other kinds of truths?

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Remembrances
4:01 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Dance Music Legend Frankie Knuckles Dies At 59

Frankie Knuckles in 2007.
Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 10:45 am

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:51 am
Tue April 1, 2014

April Fool's! Exploring Pranks and Practical Jokes

A screenshot from a broadcast of the spaghetti harvest BBC April Fool's Day joke.
Credit BBC

I'll be honest: I hate April Fools' Day, and I'm not a big fan of practical jokes. I hate it the way that some people hate Valentine's Day or New Year's Eve. I think merriment and foolishness should be spread across the year. That's why most of our shows, even pretty serious ones, start with a comedy sketch, because life is so much better when you think of it as a comedy.

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Where We Live
8:49 am
Fri March 28, 2014

The Changing Landscape of Latino America

Maria Hinojosa, host of NPR's Latino USA.
Credit santiagostudio.com

On Wednesday, a discharge petition was introduced by House Democrats in an attempt to force a vote on immigration reform. It’s an effort that is not likely to succeed, requiring the signatures of House Republicans, who have been stalwart in their opposition of immigration legislation. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
12:00 am
Fri March 28, 2014

The Nose Travels to the Grand Budapest Hotel

Gorman Bechard is a film director, screenwriter, and novelist.
Chion Wolf WNPR

A hilariously fussy hotel manager with a taste for the high life is wrenched from his gay surroundings by the specter of war and a false murder charge. That doesn't sound terribly funny, but it's the premise for "The Grand Budapest Hotel," the latest Wes Anderson movie. Our Nose panelists all went to see it, and it will be one of our topics on this show.

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Hartford Arts Institutions
2:14 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

Bushnell, Hartford Symphony Enter New Partnership

The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in Hartford.
Credit Niels van Eck / Creative Commons

The Hartford Symphony Orchestra has entered into a major partnership with the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts. It is called a "management services contractm" and it ushers in a new era for the HSO.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:38 am
Tue March 25, 2014

Hearing Voices

Peter Bullimore owns a training/consultant agency, Asylum Associates, and is the founding member of the Paranoia Network in England. He also holds a teaching and research post at Manchester University and is a published author on voices and trauma
Chion Wolf

Teresa of Avila very unambiguously reported hearing voices. She's a saint. John Forbes Nash heard voices. He won a Nobel prize. Robert Schumann heard voices that spurred him to write great music.

Philip K. Dick was guided by one inner voice, specifically female, that he would hear for much of his life. He probably holds the record for most film adaptations for words written of any author ever.

Mahatma Gandhi described a voice he could hear; not a metaphorical inner conversation, but a voice.

I could go on. Hearing voices is not that unusual. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
1:15 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Comics, From Niche to Mainstream

Helder Mira is a filmmaker for Rabbit Ears Media
Chion Wolf

Once upon a time, comic books were a niche for kids and nerds. Now they are mainstream culture. "The Avengers" is the number three all-time worldwide grossing movie.

I would like to pause, and say that I owned, as a kid, issue number one of The Avengers. I remember distinctly where I got it, and how I felt about it. I do not remember distinctly what happened to it.

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Music
4:23 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

Taek Gi Lee: Connecticut Student, Pianist Extraordinaire

South Kent School's Taek Gi Lee competing in the 10th Annual Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition.
Credit South Kent School

Taking his seat on the stage of Hastings’ White Rock Theatre, Taek Gi Lee prayed to God. It was the final round of the Tenth Annual Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition, which was held in England earlier this month, and the 17-year-old piano virtuoso was nervous. To his right, nearly 600 sets of eyes watched him with fervor. To his left, the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra -- armed with bows, mallets, reeds, and brass -- awaited their cue to begin.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:44 am
Mon March 17, 2014

The Scramble on Agunuah, Vaccinations, and More

Credit Alex Proimos / Wikimedia Commons

Mark Oppenheimer writes about religion and a whole bunch of other things. Today, he'll be talking about the difficulty Orthodox Jewish women face in obtaining a certain form of cooperation from their husbands and how that difficulty spawned a black market in coercion and violence.

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Comic books
6:20 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Fans Revive Connecticut-Based Charlton Comics 30 Years After It Closed

After Charlton went out of business, many of their artists, like John Severin, Steve Ditko, Pat Boyette, Gray Morrow and Alex Toth contributed to Mort Todd's Monsters Attack! magazine.
morttodd.com Monsters Attack #4, September 1990

What began as a joke on Facebook ended up reviving the work of a Connecticut-based comic book company that went out of business more than 30 years ago.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:15 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Hartford Was the Typewriter Capital of the Country

Greg Fudacz is a typewriter collector, enthusiast, and a pseudo-typewriter historian
Chion Wolf

In the second season of the Netflix series, House of Cards, the protagonist Frank Underwood, played by Kevin Spacey, pulls out an old family typewriter, an Underwood of course, to write a pseudo-heartfelt letter to the President.

Frank's father gave him the typewriter saying this Underwood built an empire. Now you go build another.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:36 am
Mon March 10, 2014

The Scramble: Losing at Jeopardy, Finding Lost Dogs, and Winning Back Lost Freedom of Information

Credit Shawn M. Smith / Flickr Creative Commons

Amanda Hess is one of our favorite social critics. She writes for Slate and lately, well always, she's thinking about the depiction of women in mass media, including a statistical disparity between the performances of men and women on Jeopardy

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New Music
8:14 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Celebrating New Music, Diversity at the 2014 Women Composers Festival of Hartford

Members of the Sylvanus Ensemble, who performed at the 2014 Women Composers Festival of Hartford.
Credit Sylvanus Ensemble

Dissonant harmonies rattled the air of Hartford’s Charter Oak Cultural Center on Saturday evening as members of the Sylvanus Ensemble delivered a delightfully curated program of works by 20th- and 21st-century female composers. 

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Host's Diary
10:48 am
Fri March 7, 2014

The Walrus Was Marty: A Nose Worksheet

Fawcett Publications. Edited by August Derleth, via Wikimedia Commons

In 1969, I was a high school sophomore, and I fell completely -- and embarrassingly uncritically -- for the Paul Is Dead mania. My own interest was fueled by revelations from the previous academic year. Under the spell of a young teacher named Tyler C. Tingley, I had come to see that Beatles lyrics were stuffed with symbolism and multiple meaning.  

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:38 am
Thu March 6, 2014

The Psychology and Sociology of Coming Out of the Closet

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra & Actor Brian Murray.
Chion Wolf WNPR

In the space of a lifetime, the status of gay and lesbian people in the United States and Western Europe has been transformed. So to watch a play like "A Song at Twilight," written by Noel Coward in 1966, is to journey back in time and then wonder how far, really one has traveled.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:58 am
Tue March 4, 2014

It's Grammar Day! Is My Exclamation Point Wrong?

Peter Sokolowski is Editor-at-Large at Merriam-Webster.
Chion Wolf WNPR

It's National Grammar Day, a time to take stock of the current status of the English language, and possibly get into bitter fights.

I'm old school. I'm the kind of person who will only use "not only" if I intend to follow it with "but also." That's probably a convention that died the quiet death of a feverish sloth many years ago. But I know what's right, and sometimes it feels like I'm helping to hold the language together even as it drifts into chaos.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:34 am
Mon March 3, 2014

The Scramble: Are A.J. Jacobs, Lupita Nyong'o, and John Rowland Related?

Credit Rick / Creative Commons

Today on The Scramble, one of our favorite writers, A.J. Jacobs takes us deep inside the world of modern ancestry research where websites are all  too happy to tell you that you're distantly related to Gwynyth Paltrow, Michael Bloomberg, Quincy Jones, and King David.  Those are all actual examples of people A.J. was told are his relatives. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
4:00 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Broccoli is Best!

Credit whologwy, Flickr Creative Commons

Somehow, kale has become trendy in the last few years, although its moment in the sun seems to be almost over. How did a thing like that happen? Would it be possible to infuse an old standby like broccoli with a similar hip panache? Broccoli is the warmest vegetable, and the coolest.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:13 am
Wed February 26, 2014

Get the Popcorn. Take Your Seat. We're Talking Remakes

Sam Hatch is the "movie guy" for WWUH's Culture Dogs and the Damon Scott Show on WTIC
Chion Wolf

Remakes are easy. Money-makers are hard. We live in a sloshing sea of those movie remakes but it's rare for one of them to out gross the original. An exception, oddly enough, was the remake of "Clash of the Titans," which significantly outperformed its 80s predecessor. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:24 am
Wed February 19, 2014

Connecticut in the Civil War

Matt Warshauer is a professor of History at Central Connecticut State University
Chion Wolf

Here's a little bit of Civil War history that seems to have started here in Connecticut. It was in this month of February in 1860 that Cassius Clay, a Kentucky planter turned anti-slavery crusader spoke in Hartford not far from where we're doing this show today. He was accompanied by a torch-bearing honor guard in capes and caps. The Hartford Courant called these young men "wide-awakes." 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
12:02 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

The Scramble "Likes" Douglas Rushkoff

Credit Picture Youth / Creative Commons

We're starting out today with a segment about "Generation-Like," the media term media theorist Douglas Rushkoff uses for the generation of Millennials  who live huge chunks of their lives on social media where they subsist on a form of metered approval.  

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Race
12:46 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Justice Thomas: Americans More Race Conscious Now Than In '60s

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Michael Dwyer AP

This Yahoo News report is causing some conversation today:

"Americans today are too sensitive about race, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas told a gathering of college students in Florida on Tuesday."

Yahoo's Chris Moody reports that at Palm Beach Atlantic University, a nondenominational Christian school in West Palm Beach, Fla., Thomas said:

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Earworms Wanted
1:50 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

The Worst Songs Of All Time?

Originally published on Tue February 11, 2014 9:57 pm

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