Talk of the Nation on KUER 1

Mon - Thu, Noon - 2pm
Neal Conan, Monday - Thursday. Ira Flatow, Friday
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When Americans want to be a part of the national conversation, they turn to Talk of the Nation, NPR's midday news-talk show. Journalist Neal Conan leads a productive exchange of ideas and opinions on the issues that dominate the news landscape. From politics and public service to education, religion, music and healthcare, 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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Podcasts

  • Monday, June 10, 2013 11:00am
    The man who leaked details of two secret U.S. surveillance programs told The Guardian that he hopes to trigger a national debate about the NSA programs that gathered phone and Internet records. NPR's Neal Conan reads from a range of reaction to the leaks and the motives of the leaker.
  • Monday, June 3, 2013 11:00am
    Midnight dinner service will be canceled at Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan in June. Officials say it's part of the drawdown process, and though it might not sound like a big deal, former U.S. Army paratrooper David Brown says Marines at Camp Leatherneck stand to lose more than just food.
  • Monday, May 20, 2013 11:00am
    Prominent women such as Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg and Yahoo's Marissa Mayer are proving that women are finding their place at the table. But in an op-ed for The New York Times, former programmer Ellen Ullman argues that women in the field today face "a new, more virile and virulent sexism."
  • Monday, May 6, 2013 11:00am
    Job seekers often rely on friends, family members and other connections to land jobs. Nancy DiTomaso, professor at Rutgers Business School, explains her research that shows that such seemingly harmless favoritism in networking is driving black unemployment in the U.S.
  • Monday, April 29, 2013 11:00am
    The Boston Police Department and cooperating law enforcement entities were praised for working together to track down suspects in the marathon bombings. Boston Globe columnist Joan Vennochi asks whether police could have done more in the months, weeks, and even hours before the explosions.

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Mental Health
11:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

The Fine Line Between Grief And Depression

Transcript

JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden, in Washington. Neal Conan is away. Losing a loved one is, simply put, painful. Such separation brings extreme sadness that can feel sometimes too heavy to bear. The Irish writer C.S. Lewis chronicled his suffering and healing after his wife died of cancer at the age of 45.

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NPR Story
11:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

'Key & Peele' Layer Race Issues With Laughs

Erin Gibson, Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peel in a skit from Key & Peele.
Mike Yarish Comedy Central

Comedians Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele push stereotypes to new — and sometimes uncomfortable — levels in their jokes.

On stage, on MadTV and now in their Comedy Central show, Key & Peele, they find the humor in their biracial upbringings and the many roles of black men in America.

Race
11:00 am
Mon March 12, 2012

Black Students More Likely To Be Disciplined

A Department of Education study found from 2009 to 2010, black students were 3 1/2 times more likely to be suspended or expelled than white ones. Though the reasons are unclear, many argue harsher punishments push many black and Latino students out of schools and into the criminal justice system.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Mon March 12, 2012

Why That Song Gets Stuck In Your Head

Researchers at Goldsmiths, University of London are collecting earworms — songs or bits of melody that get stuck in your head. What's yours?
iStockphoto.com

Chances are, you've fallen victim to earworms — pesky songs or melodies that get stuck in your head and just won't get out.

Research suggests that there are psychological reasons why some songs are more likely to stick, including memory triggers, emotional states, and even stress. Some researchers hope to better understand why this happens and figure out what, if anything, music memory can teach psychologists about how to treat patients dealing with memory loss.

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World
11:00 am
Mon March 12, 2012

The Challenges Of Aid Work In Conflict Zones

In Afghanistan and other conflict zones, the military is often first on the ground, followed by diplomats, contractors and journalists. Next, in many cases, are aid workers: People who work for private organizations and strive to remain impartial in some of the world's most dangerous places.

Opinion
11:00 am
Mon March 12, 2012

Op-Ed: File Criminal Charges For Hard Hits

The NFL found some two dozen players for the New Orleans Saints took part in a pay-for-hits program that paid bounties for knocking specific players out of games. Those involved likely face fines or suspensions. But lawyer Eldon Ham argues that doesn't go far enough, and proposes criminal charges.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Gorilla Genome Sheds Light On Human Evolution

Originally published on Fri March 9, 2012 12:11 pm

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. Camilla is a 300-pound female gorilla in her 30s who lives in the San Diego Zoo. Now, what sets Camilla apart from the rest of the troop is that she became the first gorilla to have its entire genome sequenced.

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NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

How To Get More For Your Bite

When you crunch into a potato chip or take a spoonful of chocolate mousse what you experience is more than just the taste of the food. In her book Taste What You're Missing, Barb Stuckey discusses why truly experiencing food involves all five senses and offers tips on how to get more enjoyment from your next meal.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

A Workout Can Change Your DNA

Reporting in Cell Metabolism, researchers write that when people who lead relatively sedentary lives worked out the DNA in their muscle fibers changed almost immediately. Scientists also found caffeine had the same effect on isolated rodent muscles. Study co-author Juleen Zierath discusses the DNA modifications.

Animals
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Studying Locomotion With Rat Treadmills, Wind Tunnels

Between the resident emu and the newborn goats, Harvard's Concord Field Station, located in Bedford, Mass., has a menagerie feel. The lab researches how different animals move--which requires lots of animals, and gadgets to facilitate and document their motion.

Space
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Dark Matter Just Got More Mysterious

Reporting in the Astrophysical Journal, scientists write of a massive collision between two galaxy clusters. By studying the cosmic remnants of that smashup, they say leftover dark matter isn't behaving as current theory predicts. Astrophysicist Andisheh Mahdavi discusses this dark matter mystery.

Environment
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Can An Early Spring Confuse Nature's Clock?

It's been an unusually warm winter in some parts of the country, with springtime temperatures and very little snow. How is nature responding? Purdue entomologist Tom Turpin and horticulturalist Kristin Schleiter of the New York Botanical Garden discuss how an early spring affects flower buds, beetles and bees.

Space
11:00 am
Fri March 9, 2012

Planet Or Not, Pluto's Getting A Visitor

The New Horizons Mission blasted off toward Pluto in 2006; it's on course to arrive in Pluto's neighborhood in 2015. Mission leader Alan Stern discusses the journey of the spacecraft, and why he thinks Pluto is still a planet. Plus, the mission to get Pluto on a commemorative stamp.

On Aging
11:00 am
Thu March 8, 2012

'Gray Divorce': Over 50, And Splitting Up

The divorce rate among people 50 and older has doubled in the past 20 years, according to research by Bowling Green State University sociologists Susan Brown and I-Fen Lin. Their paper, "The Gray Divorce Revolution," examines the factors driving the trend.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Thu March 8, 2012

'Da Vinci's Ghost,' Manifest In The Vitruvian Man

A reproduction of Leonardo Da Vinci's drawing of The Vitruvian Man.
iStockphoto.com

Most people are familiar with Leonardo Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man: A nude man, with his arms and legs stretched, inside a square within a circle.

Toby Lester tells the story behind the drawing and Da Vinci's zeal to create an image of the perfectly proportioned human in Da Vinci's Ghost: Genius, Obsession, and How Leonardo Created the World in His Own Image.

Around the Nation
11:00 am
Thu March 8, 2012

Ethnic Mapping: Prophylactic Or Offensive?

After the terrorist attacks on 9/11, some law enforcement agencies adapted crime mapping tactics into what is known as ethnic mapping. Some Muslims welcome ethnic mapping as a useful approach to preventing terrorism. Others say the surveillance amounts to domestic spying and racial profiling.

Africa
11:00 am
Thu March 8, 2012

Fact Checking The 'Kony 2012' Viral Video

Kony 2012 is not your usual viral video. A thirty-minute film by the nonprofit group Invisible Children, it hopes to raise support for the arrest of Joseph Kony, the leader of the Lord's Resistance Army. Freelance reporter Michael Wilkerson fact checks the film and explains the controversy.

From Our Listeners
11:00 am
Wed March 7, 2012

Letters: Genetic Testing And Practicing Patience

Talk of the Nation listeners wrote to the show to share their insights on previous show topics, including genetic testing, affirmative action, the source and practice of patience, and interracial marriage.

Law
11:00 am
Wed March 7, 2012

Prisons Develop Programs For Aging Population

Overcrowded prisons already coping with budget pressures face a new challenge: The growing needs of an aging inmate population. With limited state budgets, prison setups, and facilities, prison officials are trying new ways to provide care and, in some cases, opting to release inmates early.

Technology
11:00 am
Wed March 7, 2012

Scams And Malicious Apps Invade Smartphones

The viruses, spam and malware that have plagued desktop computers for years now increasingly threaten mobile smartphones, as well. More text messages now deliver scams and a growing number of malicious apps install spyware, target personal information and attempt to charge users hidden fees.

Politics
11:00 am
Wed March 7, 2012

Super Tuesday's Split Decision

Mitt Romney eked out a victory in Ohio's Super Tuesday primary. It was the closest of ten races, and the most closely watched. Rick Santorum came in second. Newt Gingrich took his home state of Georgia, Romney won six in all, and Santorum kept his campaign alive by winning three.

Around the Nation
11:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Varied Takes On The Power Of The Word 'Slut'

Originally published on Tue March 6, 2012 12:53 pm

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

Radio host Rush Limbaugh ignited controversy when he called a Georgetown law student a slut and a prostitute after she testified before a congressional committee and called for federal health care coverage to include the cost of contraception. Now, several days have gone by since Limbaugh made those comments, but the debate seems to be getting only bigger. The blogosphere is ablaze with different opinions. The op-ed pages are still filling up with comments on this, on what Limbaugh said and on its social and political meaning.

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Middle East
11:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Weighing A Policy Of Containment For Iran

President Obama recently said, "Iran's leaders should understand that I do not have a policy of containment; I have a policy to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon." Some say containment represents a viable option against Iran, but others argue that Cold War strategies do not apply to Iran.

On Aging
11:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Parents Struggle With Being Cared For By Kids

Adult children caring for elderly parents may feel guilty, isolated and resentful. But some parents being cared for do too. Dr. Lillian Rubin knows that struggle well, as she has found herself at odds with her well-meaning daughter over what her daughter wants for her, and what she actually needs.

Humans
11:00 am
Tue March 6, 2012

Pets And Owners Form A Mutually Beneficial Bond

A growing field of medical research aims to pinpoint exactly why pets can make us happier and healthier. Some studies show that animal interaction can increase a person's level of oxytocin, a hormone associated with love and trust. And the animals also benefit from positive human interaction.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Teller Talks: Magicians Use Science To Trick You

Penn & Teller, performing at the Rio in Las Vegas in 2008.
Courtesy of Penn & Teller

On stage, Teller, half of the magician team of Penn & Teller, rarely says a word.

But now he's talking, explaining how magicians harness scientific research on deception to trick audiences into falling for their illusions. And their work, in turn, makes them interesting to brain researchers.

Politics
11:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Our Brains, Betrayed By Political Flip-Flops

The human brain craves predictability, according to neuroscientists, and when politicians appear to flip-flop, our brains don't like it. Often, we feel betrayed. NPR science correspondents Jon Hamilton, Alix Spiegel and Shankar Vedantam talk about why we're hard-wired to appreciate consistency.

Opinion
11:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Op-Ed: The Catholic Church Is Not For Women

Originally published on Mon March 5, 2012 12:33 pm

Transcript

JOHN DONVAN, HOST:

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World
11:00 am
Mon March 5, 2012

Women's Rights In The Age Of The Arab Spring

Popular movements during the Arab Spring paved the way for democratic elections in Egypt and Tunisia. In Egypt, Islamists are assuming powerful roles. Many women's rights activists fear that a shift toward democratically-elected Islamist rulers will limit personal and political freedom for women.

NPR Story
11:00 am
Fri March 2, 2012

Neil deGrasse Tyson On Exploring Cosmic Frontiers

In Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier, astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson writes of how space exploration--especially human voyages--can profoundly inspire scientists and technologists of the future, and charts the path for missions to Mars and beyond.

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