State and National News

Can A White Guy Represent For His People?

May 13, 2013

Last week, we wrote about the way members of minority groups are frequently linked in the popular imagination with prominent fellow members of their group. We asked Channing Kennedy, frequent contributor to, for a commentary on this phenomenon from the perspective of someone without any immediately obvious minority affiliations. Here's what he told us:

Litterbugs Beware: Turning Found DNA Into Portraits

May 13, 2013

Heather Dewey-Hagborg was sitting in a therapy session a while ago and noticed a painting on the wall. The glass on the frame was cracked, and lodged in the crack was a single hair. She couldn't take her eyes off it.

"I just became obsessed with thinking about whose hair that was, and what they might look like, and what they might be like," she says.

A little over three years ago, filmmaker Josh Seftel's father passed away. After that, he says, it became difficult to keep up with his mom. He didn't use the phone very often and she didn't like email.

But then he got an idea.

A 'Cooked Seed' Sprouts After All, In America

May 13, 2013

Anchee Min's best-selling memoir Red Azalea told the story of her youth in China during the Cultural Revolution. Her followup, The Cooked Seed, picks up nearly 20 years later as she arrives in America with $500 in her pocket, no English and a plan to study art in Chicago.

Min tells NPR's Rachel Martin that her life in China ended because of her relationship with Madame Mao, a former actress and the wife of Chairman Mao Zedong.

Amy Grant released her first album in 1977, when she was a teenager. Apart from a few secular mainstream hits in the 1990s, most of her work is unabashedly spiritual, and her name has become synonymous with contemporary Christian pop music. It doesn't bother the singer; for her, music has always represented a sacred place.

She Works: How Do You Get Support?

May 13, 2013

For our series on the Changing Lives of Women, we're asking NPR women about their careers — and inviting you to join the conversation. This question goes to Cokie Roberts, who was NPR's longtime congressional correspondent.

Question: How do you get support?

Make Your Own Comics: Storytelling With Friends

May 13, 2013

Jacob Blackstock first conceived of the burgeoning social comics site Bitstrips as a way to let the rest of the Internet participate in his childhood passion. As a kid, the comics he most enjoyed creating "were the ones I would make for my friends, starring those friends," he says.

At a bustling polling station in the Lahore district where Imran Khan is seeking a parliament seat, the attitudes of Pakistani voters on Saturday reflected the intensity of the contest between the former cricket star and former two-time Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Supporting Khan: 'We Don't Need Loans; We Need Jobs'

We use Google to search for just about everything, so we've invited Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt to play a game called "Try Googling that, Bigshot." We'll ask him three questions about things that cannot be found.

Schmidt, who served as Google CEO for 10 years, is the co-author of the new book The New Digital Age: Reshaping the Future of People, Nations and Business.