Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., Wednesday where she sought to use the symbolism of a historic landmark to draw parallels to a present-day America that is in need of repairing deepening racial and cultural divides.

The Old State Capitol — where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous "A house divided" speech in 1858 warning against the ills of slavery and where Barack Obama launched his presidential bid in 2007 — served as the backdrop for Clinton as she spoke of how "America's long struggle with race is far from finished."

Episode 711: Hooked on Heroin

1 hour ago

When we meet the heroin dealer called Bone, he has just shot up. He has a lot to say anyway. He tells us about his career--it pretty much tracks the evolution of drug use in America these past ten years or so. He tells us about his rough past. And he tells us about how he died a week ago. He overdosed on his own supply and his friend took his body to the emergency room, then left.

New British Prime Minister Theresa May announced six members of her Cabinet Wednesday.

Amid a sweeping crackdown on dissent in Egypt, security forces have forcibly disappeared hundreds of people since the beginning of 2015, according to a new report from Amnesty International.

It's an "unprecedented spike," the group says, with an average of three or four people disappeared every day.

The Republican Party, as it prepares for its convention next week has checked off item No. 1 on its housekeeping list — drafting a party platform. The document reflects the conservative views of its authors, many of whom are party activists. So don't look for any concessions to changing views among the broader public on key social issues.

Many public figures who took to Twitter and Facebook following the murder of five police officers in Dallas have faced public blowback and, in some cases, found their employers less than forgiving about inflammatory and sometimes hateful online comments.

As Venezuela unravels — with shortages of food and medicine, as well as runaway inflation — President Nicolas Maduro is increasingly unpopular. But he's still holding onto power.

"The truth in Venezuela is there is real hunger. We are hungry," says a man who has invited me into his house in the northwestern city of Maracaibo, but doesn't want his name used for fear of reprisals by the government.

The wiry man paces angrily as he speaks. It wasn't always this way, he says, showing how loose his pants are now.

Ask a typical teenage girl about the latest slang and girl crushes and you might get answers like "spilling the tea" and Taylor Swift. But at the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C., the answers were "intersectional feminism" — the idea that there's no one-size-fits-all definition of feminism — and U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres.

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Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

4 hours ago
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'BioShock' Blasts Its Way Into The Future Of Storytelling

Oct 1, 2013

Now that my kids have gone off to college I've decided to branch out and do something new, useful and important. I'm taking up video games. In particular, I'm digging into the acclaimed game BioShock.

Wait. What's that I hear (some of) you saying? Video games are just shooting and violence! It's just mindless, sadistic entertainment!

Well, that's the question, right? Is there anything really interesting happening in video games today? It's such a good question that I sat down last week to chew through it in a Google+ hangout with 13.7 editor Wright Bryan and NPR mobile products guru Jeremy Pennycook.

We took up the question because video games represent a huge chunk of the cultural pie now (a $78 billion industry as of last year). And while lots of awful examples abound, there are games that challenge the player with substantive ideas, push the boundaries of narrative with immersive storytelling and wow us all with their visual depth.

Watching my son play BioShock a couple of years ago (I waited 'til he was 15 to get him a PS3), I was immediately taken in by its art-deco design and sci-fi storyline of an Ayn Rand utopia run amok. Like the recently released BioShock Infinite, it seemed to be more than just a first-person shooter.

Well, is it? This was the focus of our discussion, with Wright playing the role of the uninitiated skeptic, me as the newbie dipping into the original BioShock and Jeremy suiting up as the veteran gunslinger battling his way through BioShock Infinite with skill and determination.

Can a violent video game be a platform for something deeper? Do these games offer new ways of telling meaningful stories? What are the ethics of embedding a story with moral dilemma's in a game predicated on killing?

These where just a few of our questions. I am sure you have your own. We hope you enjoy the discussion as much as we did.

Want to go deeper? Watch Adam Sessler's effusive review of BioShock Infinite, in which he breaks down the many layers of meaning and substance running throughout the latest and greatest installment of this triology.

You can keep up with more of what Adam Frank is thinking on Facebook and on Twitter: @AdamFrank4

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit