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

5 hours ago
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Book News: Seamus Heaney Poem Published Posthumously

Oct 28, 2013
Originally published on October 28, 2013 11:37 am

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

  • The Guardian has published "In a Field," the last known poem by the Irish poet and Nobel laureate Seamus Heaney before his death in August. Inspired by Edward Thomas' 1916 poem, "As the Team's Head-Brass," it was written for a WWI poetry anthology edited by British poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy, who said, "Seamus's poem is typically beautiful, placed and weighted at the centre of the poetic landscape which he made so familiar to us all, and above all, heartbreakingly prescient." It describes a man coming home from war:

"From nowhere, unfamiliar and de-mobbed,

"In buttoned khaki and buffed army boots,

"Bruising the turned-up acres of our back field

"To stumble from the windings' magic ring."

  • In an op-ed for The New York Times, writer and cartoonist Tim Kreider explores the problem of writers being asked to write for free: "Not getting paid for things in your 20s is glumly expected, even sort of cool; not getting paid in your 40s, when your back is starting to hurt and you are still sleeping on a futon, considerably less so. Let's call the first 20 years of my career a gift. Now I am 46, and would like a bed."
  • R.L. Stein, the horror writer of Goosebumps fame, is reviving his '90s teen series Fear Street, set in the town of Shadyside. The series will kick off with Party Games in fall 2014.
  • Rubyfruit Jungle author Rita Mae Brown considers the Roman historian Suetonius in an essay for NPR: "Suetonius' underlying theme — left unstated, out of credit for his readers' intelligence — is the devastating erosion of total power to the human psyche. Few rulers have overcome the washing away of reality, and in his work Suetonius makes this hideously clear."

The Best Books Coming Out This Week

  • Gorgeous Nothings is a lovely facsimile edition of Emily Dickinson's 52 envelope poems — writings scrawled on scraps of paper or the backs of envelopes. Though you can see envelope poems online in the newly-launched online Dickinson archive, the book is a beautiful object in itself.
  • Another physically beautiful book is The Smithsonian's History of America in 101 Objects. Smithsonian Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture Richard Kurin has chosen 101 objects — from Louis Armstrong's trumpet to Abraham Lincoln's hat — to tell a compelling history of the United States.
  • Daniel Alarcon's second novel, At Night We Walk In Circles, set in an unnamed South American country, follows Nelson, who is starring in a production of a dystopian play called "The Idiot President." Alarcon spoke to NPR's Arun Rath about the writing process: "There was nothing about the writing of this book that was fast-paced, or dynamic. This was a terrible, terrible seven years of creative stasis and dysfunction."
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