Talk of the Nation

Weekdays 12:00 pm

When Americans want to be a part of the national conversation, they turn to Talk of the Nation, NPR's live, midday news-talk program. Host Neal Conan leads a productive exchange of ideas and opinions on the issues that dominate the news landscape.

From breaking news, science, and education to religion and the arts, Talk of the Nation offers listeners the opportunity to join enlightening discussions with decision-makers, authors, academicians, and artists from around the world.

For two hours each Monday through Thursday, Talk of the Nation listeners weigh-in, share their thoughts and ask questions by calling, emailing, messaging through social media.

On Fridays the conversation turns to the topics of science, with Talk of the Nation: Science Friday with Ira Flatow, focusing on news and issues about the world of science and technology.

A long-time NPR journalist, Conan has been a reporter, editor, and anchor for NPR live events coverage. Conan played a major role in anchoring continuous live coverage of developments during the terrorist attacks and aftermath of September 11, 2001. His broadcasts are marked by their clarity, accuracy and eloquence.

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Business
10:00 am
Tue April 3, 2012

A Buyer's Market: The Balance Of Power In Retail

Shopping apps and retail websites give consumers the power to compare prices, read reviews and shop on the go. Stephanie Clifford, business reporter at The New York Times and market researcher Paco Underhill discuss how many brick-and-mortar stores are altering pricing strategies.

Sports
10:00 am
Tue April 3, 2012

Tape Measure Home Runs And Baseball's Biggest Hits

A home run by Washington Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth during spring training had baseball lovers breaking out the tape measure to figure out how far the ball had gone. Sports writer Jane Leavy explains the practice that dates back to Mickey Mantle's historic 565 foot hit in 1953.

Books
10:55 am
Mon April 2, 2012

From 'App' To 'Tea': English Examined In '100 Words'

"Tea" (a social word from the 17th century) is one of the words David Crystal examines in his book The Story of English In 100 Words.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue April 3, 2012 12:26 pm

Linguist David Crystal describes English as a "vacuum cleaner of a language." Speakers merrily swipe some words from other languages, adopt others because they're cool or sound classy, and simply make up other terms.

In his new book, he tells The Story of English in 100 Words, using a collection of words — classic ones like "tea" and new words like "app" — that explain how the the English language has evolved.

Crystal thinks every word has a story to tell, even the ones as commonplace as "and."

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Mental Health
10:00 am
Mon April 2, 2012

A Patient's Perspective: Police And The Mentally Ill

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

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Middle East
10:00 am
Mon April 2, 2012

Next Step In Syria: Peaceful Or Armed Intervention?

At least 70 countries, including the U.S., pledged millions of dollars in aid to the Syrian opposition. U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan has set a deadline of April 10 for compliance with the U.N. peace plan. Some analysts believe it's too late for peaceful negotiations.

Opinion
10:00 am
Mon April 2, 2012

Coping With A Loved One's 'Justifiable Killing'

Writer Donna Britt's 26-year-old brother was killed by Indiana police officers decades ago. Amidst the news of Trayvon Martin's death, she is reminded of the unanswerable questions surrounding her brother's death. She talks about the challenges of coming to terms the violent death of a loved one.

NPR Story
10:00 am
Fri March 30, 2012

Why Don't Spiders Get Stuck In Their Webs?

This mystery has plagued arachnologists for decades. William Eberhard and Daniel Briceno untangle the web question in a paper in the journal Naturwissenschaften. The answer has to do with spiders' oily, hairy legs.

NPR Story
10:00 am
Fri March 30, 2012

Half A Century Later, A Return To Challenger Deep

The film director James Cameron has just completed a dive to Challenger Deep, the deepest point on Earth at nearly 36,000 feet under the sea. His manned descent is the first in 52 years, since the oceanographers Don Walsh and Jacques Piccard explored the Mariana Trench in the bathyscaphe Trieste.

Arts & Life
10:00 am
Fri March 30, 2012

Art, Mind And Brain Intersect In Kandel's Vienna

Originally published on Fri March 30, 2012 10:45 am

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. My next guest won the Nobel Prize in 2000 for his work on learning and memory, and he really needs no introduction as a neuroscientist. But there is another side to Eric Kandel that you may not know. He is an art collector, an historian of early 20th-century art in Germany and Austria, and he says he could have seen that passion as an alternate career path.

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Games & Humor
10:00 am
Fri March 30, 2012

No Joke: Science Is A Laughing Matter

Want to hear a joke about sodium hypobromite? NaBrO! Can science be the butt of a good joke? Ira Flatow and guests test the hypothesis in an annual April Fools' joke-a-thon. They share the best gags in the business. Sidesplitting or groan-worthy? You decide.

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