NPR Story
1:00 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Thousands Of Homeless An Election Issue For Chavez

Oil-rich Venezuela is awash in hundreds of thousands of homeless. Many find places to live where they can — in half-finished shopping malls or under the grandstand at a race track. The huge number of homeless has become an election issue for President Hugo Chavez, who is seeking his fourth, six-year term.

NPR Story
1:00 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

'Clinton' Documentary Turns Lens On Former President

Host Audie Cornish talks with writer and director Barak Goodman about his latest project, Clinton, part of the American Experience: Presidents series. The first of two installments airs Monday night on PBS.

Europe
12:58 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Portugal Plays By The Rules, But Economy Slumps

A once-bustling vegetable market in Lisbon is now beyond the reach of many Portuguese — a sign of their country's economic problems.
Sylvia Poggioli NPR

Originally published on Tue February 21, 2012 9:25 am

The eurozone crisis has focused attention on debt-burdened Greece spiraling into decline. Meanwhile, Portugal is seen as the international creditors' poster-child for obediently slashing spending and welfare benefits.

Nevertheless, the Portuguese national debt continues to grow, and the country is mired in recession and soaring unemployment.

The Portuguese national character has long been identified with Fado music. Raquel Freire, an activist with the local Occupy movement, says the melancholy style helps explain decades of resignation.

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Book Reviews
11:08 am
Mon February 20, 2012

In 'Drifting House': Home Is Where The Hurt Is

cover art
istockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 5:00 am

If you can bear it, it pays to read the intense, disturbing stories in Krys Lee's justly heralded debut collection, Drifting House, twice. The first time through, you're liable to be so overwhelmed by grim details such as a severed arm in a kitchen sink or a homeless man desperately stabbing a would-be thief with metal chopsticks that you may miss the deep humanity underpinning Lee's dark vision.

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Heller McAlpin is a New York-based critic who reviews books regularly for NPR.org, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, The San Francisco Chronicle and other publications.

Music Interviews
11:08 am
Mon February 20, 2012

Bret McKenzie: A Very Manly Muppet [Extended Cut]

Bret McKenzie (left) wrote five of the songs in The Muppets, including the Oscar-nominated "Man or Muppet" and the opening number, "Life's a Happy Song."
Andrew Macpherson Disney

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 12:53 am

A shorter version of this interview was broadcast on Feb. 13, 2012.

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Books News & Features
11:07 am
Mon February 20, 2012

Forget Lincoln Logs: A Tower Of Books To Honor Abe

A tower of books about Abraham Lincoln as seen from the top down.
Maxell MacKenzie

Originally published on Sun February 19, 2012 10:01 pm

This President's Day, a group of historians in Washington, D.C., decided they wanted to do something different to recognize the legacy of Abraham Lincoln. But how do you memorialize someone who is already one of the most memorialized people in history?

Their solution: to physically illustrate Lincoln's importance by creating a tower of books written about him. The tower measures about eight feet around and 34 feet — that's three and a half stories tall.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
11:07 am
Mon February 20, 2012

Joyce El Khoury And Brian Jagde: Tiny Desk Concert

Emily Bogle NPR

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 6:46 am

Here at NPR Music, we don't impose an awful lot of limits when it comes to hosting musicians and their instruments behind (and occasionally on top of) Bob Boilen's desk.

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Author Interviews
11:07 am
Mon February 20, 2012

'New Yorker' Cartoonist Imagines Washington At 7

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 10:01 am

Through his many New Yorker covers, Barry Blitt has become one of the pre-eminent satirical cartoonists of America's recent presidents. He is probably best known for his controversial 2008 cover of Michelle and Barack Obama, dressed as a Muslim and a militant with an AK-47, fist-bumping in the Oval Office.

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Blog Of The Nation
11:06 am
Mon February 20, 2012

February 20th: What's On Today's Show

In the second hour, author David Treuer talks about his life growing up on Leech Lake Reservation.

Originally published on Mon February 20, 2012 10:20 am

Iran
For the second time in less than a month, United Nations inspectors are in Iran. It's unclear whether they will be allowed near a questionable nuclear plant in Fordo. Western officials believe Iran wants to enrich uranium there for a weapon, while Iran's leaders contend it is for peaceful purposes only. All the while, Western-imposed sanctions are damaging Iran's economy and currency. NPR foreign correspondent Mike Shuster joins host Neal Conan to discuss Iran's ambitions.

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