This Sunday, HBO premieres a new comedy series that's written and directed by Lena Dunham, who grabbed the media spotlight in 2010 with her film Tiny Furniture. She's 25 years old now, and stars in this new TV series as well.
A few years after her younger brother John died from AIDS-related complications in 1989, poet Marie Howe wrote him a poem in the form of a letter. Called "What the Living Do," the poem is an elegiac description of loss, and of living beyond loss.
This photo provided by the Amarillo/Potter/Randall Office of Emergency Management shows Potter County firefighter Matt Dryden standing next to a wall of hail on Wednesday near Amarillo, Texas. The hail was pushed into drifts of up to 4-feet.
Credit / AP
In this photo taken Wednesday and provided by the Amarillo/Potter/Randall Office of Emergency Management a motorist sits in a truck partially buried in slushy hail near Amarillo, Texas.
Boudin is a Cajun specialty — sausage filled with rice, pork and herbs. And since Scott, La., is starting a Boudin festival, the state legislature crowned it the "Boudin Capital of the World." Nevermind there are two other Boudin capitals of the world. But Jennings, La., trumps them all. Years ago, it was crowned the "Boudin Capital of the Universe."
Throughout the GOP primary season, Mitt Romney struggled among voters who make up many of the party's key constituencies, including Southerners, evangelicals, those living in rural areas and members of the white working class.
Now that he has the Republican presidential nomination all but sewn up, such voters are the least of Romney's worries.
In fact, the type of Republican voters who were most skeptical about the former Massachusetts governor may end up being among his most certain supporters.
A scandal in China has led to the ouster of a powerful political player, who was once a rising star in the Communist Party. Richard MacGregor, a former China bureau chief for the Financial Times, talks to Renee Montagne about the scandal. MacGregor also authored The Party, a book about China's political system.
Got a Diet Coke or Diet Pepsi habit? Lots of Americans do. Consumption of all types of diet soft drinks has been on the rise. And as a nation, we drink an estimated 20 percent more of diet drinks now than we did 15 years ago.
So, is it good for us? A new study finds the answer to that question may depend a lot on, well, what you eat.
Mohamed Fellag, an Algerian comedian and humor writer, plays the title character in the Oscar-nominated Monsieur Lazhar, who steps in to teach a class of middle school students at exactly the right time.
At the start of a bright, sunny day that seems otherwise like any other day, a popular teacher is found dead in her classroom. It was suicide.
The school is traumatized, especially that teacher's students. By the next day, the principal is at her wits' end trying to find someone willing to take the class. So when Bachir Lazhar (Mohamed Fellag) offers to teach, it comes at just the right moment.
When he appeared in court on second-degree murder charges in the shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman was accompanied by his new defense attorney, Mark O'Mara. Hours after the hearing, O'Mara told NPR that he doubts the case will go to trial in 2012.
But in the meantime, O'Mara tells Tell Me Morehost Michel Martin, he'd like to get his client out of jail.
Some Latin American leaders want to talk about the possibility of legalizing some drugs, a move the U.S. strongly opposes. Here, a Mexican soldier stands guard at a huge marijuana plantation that was uncovered in San Quintin, Baja California state, near the U.S. border, last year.
Credit Johan Ordonez / AFP/Getty Images
A man makes a joint during a march last month in Guatemala City, Guatemala, calling for the decriminalization of marijuana.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden, in Washington. Neal Conan is away. The man who Florida police first declined to arrest now faces second-degree murder charges for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. George Zimmerman claims he is not guilty under Florida's Stand Your Ground law, which allows for the use of force in self-defense.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden, in Washington. Neal Conan is away. Baby boomers are the first generation with large numbers of dual-earner couples heading into retirement. That means negotiating the golden years is all the more complicated. Now there are two careers, two hard-earned nest eggs and quite possibly two competing visions of how and when to retire.
"Do I freak you out?" It's a question that haunts writer Mary Elizabeth Williams and others whom she describes as "physically different, in ways both small and large."
Williams' surgery to remove cancer more than a year ago left a 5 centimeter bald spot on the back of her head. She doesn't mind it — it's a badge of survival — but her daughter, Beatrice, fusses about it from time to time.
Chico's story mimics the stories of many Cuban musicians who left Havana and arrived in New York City in the 1940s — a time when musicians like Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie were starting to emerge.
Credit Luma Films
Javier Mariscal (left) and Fernando Trueba directed Chico & Rita along with Tono Errando.
The animated film Chico and Rita is set in 1940s Havana, at a time when Cuban musicians were starting to leave the country and join the jazz scene in New York. It was also a time when musical styles were fusing — and changing the Afro-Cuban jazz scene entirely.
The film tells the story of Chico, one of the best piano players in Havana, and Rita, his sultriest singer. They're lovers, and eventually their migration takes them past New York to Paris — criss-crossing continents to make music while struggling to keep themselves and their relationship afloat.
Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 11:17 am
Update at 1:15 p.m. ET, April 13: Since we first published this post, Sybrina Fulton has gone on other news programs to clarify her comments. We have a new post here, headlined "Trayvon's Mother: Encounter Was An Accident, Shooting Was Not."
If you feel like suing somebody, you'd better be patient.
Due to state budget woes, courts all across the country are cutting back on personnel and the number of hours or even days that they're open. That's causing long delays, especially when it comes to civil litigation.
"There's no question that there's been a pretty devastating impact in lots of states in how we deliver services," says Kevin Burke, president of the American Judges Association.
The U.S. now imports far more oil from Canada than from any other country. Persian Gulf imports now account for less than 15 percent of the oil consumed in the U.S. This photo shows the Syncrude oil sands extraction facility near Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada, in 2009.
Credit Marcel Mochet / AFP/Getty Images
The source of U.S. oil imports has been evolving. Canada, Latin America and Africa have been sending more oil to the U.S., while Middle Eastern crude is playing a smaller role. This photo shows an oil operation in 2007 off the coast of Angola, a leading producer in Africa.
Since the Arab oil embargoes of the 1960s and 70s, it's been conventional wisdom to talk about American dependence on oil from the Persian Gulf. But the global oil market has changed dramatically since then.
Today, the U.S. actually gets most of its imported oil from Canada and Latin America.
And many Americans might be surprised to learn that the U.S. now imports roughly the same amount of oil from Africa as it does from the Persian Gulf. African imports were a bit higher in 2010, while Persian Gulf oil accounted for a bit more last year.
The welfare program that operated in the United States between the Franklin Roosevelt administration and the Clinton administration offered poor families assistance with few requirements or time frames. States could enroll as many people as they wanted in the program, and the federal government would match their funds.