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

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Book News: Man Booker Prize To Be Opened To Americans

Sep 16, 2013
Originally published on September 16, 2013 8:11 am

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

  • Britain's most prestigious literary award will be opened to Americans next year. The Man Booker Prize is currently open to writers from the 54 countries in the Commonwealth and the Republic of Ireland. According to a report in The Sunday Times, "The organisers increasingly believe that excluding writers from America is anachronistic. The Booker committee believes US writers must be allowed to compete to ensure the award's global reputation." The weekend announcement was met with decidedly mixed reactions: Howard Jacobson, whose novel The Finkler Question won the award in 2010, told The Telegraph that it was "the wrong decision," and Jim Crace, the only British writer on this year's shortlist, said in The Independent that "I think prizes need to have their own characters, and sometimes those characters are defined by their limitations." But Kazuo Ishiguro, another former Booker winner, said that "the world has changed and it no longer makes sense to split up the writing world in this way." In some ways, the move feels inevitable: Four of the authors on this year's shortlist already live, or have recently lived, in the U.S.
  • NPR's Bill Chappell reported Saturday that a completely bookless public library has opened in Texas. The all-digital facility has "600 e-readers and 48 computer stations, in addition to laptops and tablets." Chappell added, "People can also come for things like kids' story time and computer classes, according to the library's website.
  • Joyce Maynard, the writer who had an affair with J.D. Salinger as a teenager, wrote in an op-ed in The New York Times: "To a stunning degree, for a period of over half a century, Salinger managed to convince a significant portion of the reading population that his words and actions should be exempt from scrutiny for the simple reason that he wrote those nine stories, and "The Catcher in the Rye." And because he said so."
  • Update at 8:05 a.m. ET: On Monday morning, one of four longlists for the National Book Awards was announced on The Daily Beast. The 10 nominees in the "young people's literature" category are:

    The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp by Kathi Appelt
    Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by K.G. Campbell
    A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff
    The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson
    The Thing About Luck by Cynthia Kadohata
    Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
    Far Far Away by Tom McNeal
    Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff
    The Real Boy by Anne Ursu, illustrated by Erin McGuire
    Boxers and Saints by Gene Luen Yang

    The longlists for poetry, nonfiction and fiction will be announced later this week.

The biggest books coming out this week:

  • Thomas Pynchon's Bleeding Edge is full of his trademark jangly, slangy prose-riffs and Quirky characters with Quirky names, mostly world-weary hackers who say things like, "Word around the cubes is ... ." Whether you think he's the prophet-genius of the Internet age or a smug narcissist who insists, inexplicably, on writing "sez" instead of "says," Bleeding Edge proves, once again, that there is no one quite like Pynchon.
  • Men We Reaped is Jesmyn Ward's electric and painful memoir about five young men, including her brother, who died over the course of a few years in a small town in Mississippi. She told NPR's Rachel Martin: "I see history, I see racism, I see economic disempowerment, I see all of these things, you know, that come together, or that came together, sort of in this perfect storm here in southern Mississippi, and I feel like that is what is bearing down on our lives."
Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.