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.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Arizona Hispanics Poised To Swing State Blue

5 hours ago
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Book News: Arizona Lifts Ban On 7 Mexican-American Studies Books

Oct 25, 2013
Originally published on October 25, 2013 11:18 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

  • The Tucson Unified School District is reinstating seven books banned after a Mexican-American Studies program was outlawed in Arizona. In 2010, a judge ruled that the program was illegal under a law banning classes that "promote resentment toward a race or class of people." The books include Chicano! The History of the Mexican American Civil Rights Movement by Arturo Rosales, Critical Race Theory by Richard Delgado and 500 Years of Chicano History in Pictures edited by Elizabeth Martinez. The Arizona Daily Star reports that the governing board voted 3-2 to reinstate the books as "supplementary materials." Meanwhile, Arizona's Department of Education responded in a statement to News 4 Tucson: "Given the prior misuse of the approved texts in TUSD classrooms, the Arizona Department of Education is concerned whether the governing board's actions indicate an attempt to return to practices found to have violated Arizona's statutes in 2011."
  • Iranian Culture Minister Ali Jannati said this week that Iran may reconsider its restrictions on certain books that have been banned by censors, according to the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA). Jannati was quoted as saying: "Those books subjected to censorship or denied permission to be published in the past will be reviewed again." He told the Iranian daily Ahram that "I think if the Koran was not a divine revelation, when it was handed to the book supervisory board, they would say some words did not comply with public chastity and would deny it permission for publication."
  • Jonathan Franzen speaks to Manjula Martin about writing, social media and making money during an interview in the brand new magazine Scratch: "I think the literary novelist who makes money is like a fish in a tweed suit. Flannery O'Connor talks about the fiction writer's concern being 'a poverty fundamental to mankind.' You lose touch with that impoverishment at your own risk."
  • Earlier this week, writer Gregg Barrios complained in a Texas Observer op-ed that in an act of "egregious marginalization," the Texas Book Festival "features only 15 Latina and Latino writers out of 230 invited writers." In another op-ed, the festival's literary director, Steph Opitz, agreed with Barrios, writing, "I, too, am disappointed that there is not more diversity in this year's line-up" and asking to meet with him to hear his suggestions for next year.
  • J.J. Abrams named his favorite writers in a New York Times interview: "Mark Twain for his amazing use of language and humor, and H. G. Wells for his wild, prescient imagination. I want to say Salinger, too, but all this is making me sound like I'm still in junior high. I have a great affection for the writing of Graham Greene and am amazed by the soul and poetry of Colum McCann. And I can't tell which is more incredible: how Stephen King can grab you by the throat in whatever damn genre he's writing in, or that as soon as you've finished his latest novel, he's published another one. His skill and prolificacy is otherworldly. Like, maybe literally."
  • The New York Times has begun a series of profiles of small poetry presses. Why? Because it says that "many smart people say they're panic-stricken by poetry, as if it were an iambic migraine to be ducked. One purpose of these occasional profiles in poetry is to educate readers who might be tempted by the art, but who aren't sure where to start. We mean to gradually create a guide to the vast archipelago of independent-press poetry publishing." In this installment, Michael Wiegers of Copper Canyon Press explains what he look for in a manuscript: "I look for the intentional, the weird and the unexpected that makes a voice singular."
Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.