Every year more than one million students fail to graduate from high school on time. But we rarely explore what happens next. What are these students’ lives like 10, 20, even 40 years after they leave the classroom? Do they ever get a second chance?
Today's workers need more education and skills than ever before. But 39 million adults in the United States don't have even the most basic credential: a high school diploma. Many hope their ticket to a better job is passing a test called the GED. But critics say the test is too easy and hardly the equivalent of a high school education.
Researchers have long known the best way to learn is with a personal tutor. But tutoring is expensive. Providing the benefits of tutoring to everyone hasn't been possible. Now, experts say technology creates new ways for schools to customize education for each student.
Since the posthumous publication of her poems in the 1890’s, Emily Dickinson has been portrayed as a virginal recluse, a mental case, and a victim of a broken heart. Susan Snively’s talk challenges these myths by discussing the poet’s letters to the powerful Judge Otis Phillips Lord, a widower who had been her late father’s best friend. Unpublished until 1954, the letters reveal a playful, tender, passionate Emily, happy in a mutual love that graced her middle age.
Judy Wicks will discuss her evolution as an entrepreneur and how she would not only change her neighborhood, but would also change her world – helping communities far and wide create local living economies that value people, nature and place more than money. Focusing on what it takes to marry social change and commerce, and doing business differently, Judy shows how entrepreneurs, as well as consumers, can follow both mind and heart, cultivate lasting relationships with each other and the planet, and build a new compassionate economy that will bring us greater security, as well as happiness
Bluegrass music is close to America’s musical heart. Its recurring themes of love, loss, and longing for home resonate deeply with the American psyche. The sounds of bluegrass – beginning with the fiddle and banjo - draw on the contributions of America’s diverse immigrant communities, from Europe to Africa.
Created just 70 years ago by professional musicians, bluegrass first raged across the country in the 1940s. It was a driving, supercharged view of American folk roots, named for the style’s creator and his band: Bill Monroe and his Bluegrass Boys.
Life is not a commodity, but a community. Animals are not our possessions, but our elder siblings, guides and teachers in the larger family of which Homo sapiens is merely a junior member. Reverend Gary Kowalski shares the journey that led him to appreciate nature as the primordial sacrament and to rediscover the ancient knowledge evident to indigenous people (reconfirmed by the findings of modern biology) that other species are not so different from ourselves, but share in the emotional depths and psychic capacities that make us most fully human.
Drawing on Dietrich Bonhoeffer's concept of "cheap grace," Andrew Bacevich exposes the chronic defects in the current U. S. approach to waging war. He explains why the world's most powerful military doesn't win and why the nation's reliance on professional soldiers has turned out to be such a bad bargain. When American soldiers deploy to places like Iraq and Afghanistan, what is the cause for which they fight? The patriotic answer is this: they fight for freedom. Challenge that proposition and you’ll likely pick a quarrel.
After the illness and death of her late husband, acclaimed author and National Public Radio correspondent Margot Adler began to read vampire novels as a meditation on mortality. This meditation soon became an obsession. Adler has read over 250 such novels ranging from teen to adult, from detective to romance, from gothic to modern. "Every society creates the vampire it needs," wrote the feminist scholar Nina Auerbach.
Gar Alperovitz calls for an evolution, not a revolution, into a new system that would democratize the ownership of wealth, strengthen communities in diverse ways, and be governed by policies and institutions sophisticated enough to manage a large-scale, powerful economy.
What is the next system? It is not corporate capitalism, not state socialism, but something else— something entirely American, something building on our pragmatic American “can do” spirit that is also sophisticated about what it will ultimately take to alter our corporate dominated system over time.
Have you ever heard some music on NHPR and wondered, "what was that song?" Those musical interludes set the tone and pace for the stories you hear, because great storytelling demands great music. It’s why we choose the music that surrounds our reporting so carefully. This week, we’ll hear more of that music in between.
Playing on the Air is a new program featuring 10-20 minute short plays with the highest caliber talent including Oscar, Tony and Emmy award winners. Each short short play is followed by a personal interview with its artists. These bite-sized pieces are authored by America's best including Pulitzer and Tony award winners.
This week’s plays…
There You Are, with Olympia Dukakis and Maria Tucci, is about two women who meet again at an outdoor concert and pursue the relationship they didn't dare to in their youth.
This is a country awash in monuments. They are the centerpieces of traffic circles, street corners and, of course, the National Mall. We have erected them to Rosie the Riveter and Confederate generals. Yet our ambivalence towards these monuments is as old as our enthusiasm for them. Case in point: The Washington Monument. Ever wonder why there isn’t actually a image of Washington on it?