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Neal Conan

When Americans want to be a part of the national conversation, they turn to Talk of the Nation, NPR's live, midday news-talk program. Host Neal Conan leads a productive exchange of ideas and opinions on the issues that dominate the news landscape.

From breaking news, science, and education to religion and the arts, Talk of the Nation offers listeners the opportunity to join enlightening discussions with decision-makers, authors, academicians, and artists from around the world.

For two hours each Monday through Thursday, Talk of the Nation listeners weigh-in, share their thoughts and ask questions by calling, emailing, messaging through social media.

On Fridays the conversation turns to the topics of science, with Talk of the Nation Science Friday with Ira Flatow, focusing on news and issues about the world of science and technology. For show listings and archives, visit here.

 

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NPR Story
12:00 pm
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
12:00 pm
Tue March 13, 2012

'Key And 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.

Afghanistan
12:00 pm
Tue March 13, 2012

Killings Complicate U.S. Strategy In Afghanistan

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 1:26 pm

Transcript

JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden in Washington; Neal Conan is away. We still don't know why a U.S. Army soldier allegedly murdered 16 men, women and children in Afghanistan. That investigation continues. The consequences, though, seem clear.

The families involved are devastated. The Taliban promises revenge. The Afghan Parliament issued a statement saying Afghans had run out of patience with foreign soldiers, and the New York Times reports that the Obama administration is debating a speedier pullout from the country.

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Digital Life
12:00 pm
Tue March 13, 2012

Homeless Hotspots: Exploitation Or Innovation?

An advertising agency sparked controversy at the South by Southwest technology conference when it hired homeless people in Austin to act as "Homeless Hotspots." Critics charge that it exploits the homeless. But Megan Garber, a staff writer for The Atlantic, sees some good in the project.

World
12:00 pm
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
12:00 pm
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.

Race
12:00 pm
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
12:00 pm
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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Space
12:00 pm
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.

Animals
12:00 pm
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.

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