Frank Stasio

Host, "The State of Things"

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.

From there he went to National Public Radio, where he rose from associate producer to newscaster for All Things Considered. He left that job in 1990 to help start an alternative school in Washington, DC. Frank returned to NPR as a freelance news anchor, guest host of Talk of The Nation and other national programs, and host of special news coverage.

He also presents audio theater workshops for children and teachers and conducts radio journalism workshops for broadcasters in former Soviet-bloc countries. He lives in Durham.

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The State of Things
11:39 am
Tue March 22, 2011

A North Carolinian's New York Stories

'I Totally Meant to Do That' by Jane Borden

When Jane Borden moved to Manhattan after graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, she thought she would have no trouble leaving her Southern home behind. Turns out she didn't count on the voice of her Aunt Jane, which she seemed to hear wherever she went in the Big Apple. In an endearing collection of essays called "I Totally Meant to Do That” (Broadway Paperbacks/2011), Borden recalls her Southern fish-out-of-water experiences with humor and affection for both North Carolina and New York.

The State of Things
11:18 am
Mon March 21, 2011

Meet Samia Serageldin

Credit www.harpercollins.co.uk

Growing up in Egypt, Samia Serageldin didn't think about becoming a writer. She was more worried about the fate of her family whose political activity set them against the ruling parties under Nasser, then Sadat. She married and moved to London at age 20 with her husband. Except for two brief years of hopeful return to Egypt in the late 1970s, Serageldin has been an expatriate, living in Michigan, Massachusetts and North Carolina. Her autobiographical first novel, “The Cairo House,” was published in 2000 and chronicles the rise and fall of a class of Egyptians caught between Western and traditional influences. Her subsequent books, “The Naqib’s Daughter” and “Love is Like Water,” also focus on Egypt.

The State of Things
12:05 pm
Fri March 18, 2011

The Lee Boys

The Lee Boys

The Lee Boys play Sacred Steel, so called because of its roots in gospel and the pedal steel guitar that drives the sound. Made up of three brothers and their nephews, the band members all learned to play at the House of God Church in Perrine, Fla., where their father was a pastor. They integrated blues, rock, jazz and funk elements into their sound, creating an energetic and uplifting music, which they have showcased at churches, clubs and festivals across the country.

The State of Things
11:50 am
Fri March 18, 2011

"Butterfly's Child"

'Butterfly's Child' by Angela Davis-Gardner

Raleigh writer Angela Davis-Gardner loves Japan. She went there to teach when she was a young woman fresh from her undergraduate studies at Duke University. The landscape and the people stayed in her imagination so profoundly that she has visited several times and set her most recent books there. “Plum Wine” examines the aftermath of World War II in Japan. And her new book, “Butterfly’s Child” (The Dial Press/2011) moves between Japan and America at the end of the 19th century.

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The State of Things
11:37 am
Fri March 18, 2011

Israel And Unrest In The Middle East

Arthur Lenk

Arthur Lenk, director of the Department of International Law in Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will deliver a lecture at Duke University’s Law School today, focusing on Israel, the Middle East peace process and international law. Revolution in Egypt and Tunisia, civil war in Libya and unrest throughout the region mean Israel’s long-held relationships with other Middle Eastern states are in transition.

The State of Things
11:32 am
Thu March 17, 2011

NC Literary Lights: The Legacy Of Paul Green

Credit www.paulgreen.org

You may recognize the name Paul Green as that of the playwright who penned the long-running outdoor drama "The Lost Colony" or gave his name to the theater that houses the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Playmakers Repertory Company. Green's legacy is actually much greater. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, wrote screenplays for Hollywood and fought for decades in his home state of North Carolina for progressive causes and social justice.

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The State of Things
12:25 pm
Wed March 16, 2011

Islamic Awareness Month

Haroon Moghul
Credit themaydan.org

The Muslim Student Association at Duke University is presenting a series of lectures by experts on Islam with the goal of generating positive dialogue about Muslims in America. This year’s “Islamic Awareness Month” comes on the heels of Congressional hearings examining the spread of radicalism and extremism in Muslim communities across the U.S.

The State of Things
12:20 pm
Wed March 16, 2011

Bring On The Brackets

Sidney Lowe
Credit newsobserver.com

The NCAA tournament is here along with the March madness that goes with it. Sixty-eight teams are competing for the championship. Two big North Carolina contenders – the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Duke University – are in the mix, but North Carolina State University missed the tournament cutoff and coach Sidney Lowe resigned in the aftermath.

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The State of Things
12:14 pm
Wed March 16, 2011

Crime Lab Controversy

Derrick Allen
Credit newsobserver.com

Last week, Durham Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson publicly criticized the State Bureau of Investigation’s handling of a 1998 murder case, saying the SBI withheld evidence that could have aided the defendant in trial. The case of Derrick Allen, who spent 12 years in jail for the sexual assault and murder of a 2-year-old girl, is the latest to bring attention to the SBI’s policies and procedures at its crime lab.

The State of Things
12:30 pm
Tue March 15, 2011

Food Deserts

Credit www.trosainc.org

A food desert is a community where healthy food is hard to find. It’s not as much about hunger as it is about access. Many people living in food deserts can afford to shop, they just can’t find a place to shop. Food deserts exist in rural as well as urban settings. It’s hard to say how many food deserts there are in North Carolina because the definition is derived from statistics on income levels, availability of transportation as well as scarcity of grocery stores. Joining host Frank Stasio to discuss the food desert phenomenon are Wendy Noel, the manager of TROSA Grocery in Durham, and Joshua Stack, director of communications for MANNA Foodbank, a Western North Carolina nonprofit that collects, stores and distributes food.

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