Susan Davis

Producer, The State of Things

Slow money is a movement that grew out of the 2008 financial collapse. The first principle of that movement is to “bring money back down to earth.” It calls for investing in local farms and food products. On today's program we are going to consider the Slow Money movement in North Carolina and ask this question: what if we applied the principles of Slow Money to things beyond food and farms? What happens when we create a system that values businesses that create healthy local economies and environments? That system is slowly taking shape and it's called Impact Investing.

North Carolina voters recently approved an amendment to the state constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman. The amendment outlaws same sex marriage and threatens the recognition of civil unions and domestic partnerships.

Jay Leutze was a non-practicing lawyer writing a novel, working for the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy and minding his own business in his home in western North Carolina when he got a phone call from an impassioned and outraged 14 year old named Ashley.

Writer Christopher Tilghman is known to some as the bard of the borderlands. His short stories and novels, including the much acclaimed “Mason's Retreat," are set on the eastern shore of Maryland. It's a place where water and land meet, where slavery existed north of the Mason-Dixon Line and most of life is a calculation rather than a dream or a conviction.

Last month, a conference in Greensboro brought together more than 70 attorneys, activists and average citizens to talk about human and civil rights violations at the hands of law enforcement. Among the issues discussed were racial profiling, police brutality, mass incarceration, torture and rendition. The event was a call to action and the message was that every member of society is responsible for speaking out about abuses of state power.

The United Nations estimates that 9,000 people have died in Syria since the revolution began in March of 2011 and the conflict spilled into Lebanon this week. Consider that it took a month for Tunisia to depose its ruler and only 18 days for Egypt to get rid of Hosni Mubarak, yet Syria’s President, Bashar Assad, shows no signs of stepping down.

Given the popularity of dual language immersion programs in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro School District, the school board is considering establishing a dual language elementary magnet school. But where? Chapel Hill-Carrboro has never had a magnet school, but rapid growth is occasioning a new elementary school in the district. Whenever a new school is built, the board examines its programs and its service and considers how to do a better job. But the magnet school proposal could involve moving hundreds of kids around and upsetting parents in the process.

Alex Grant is Scottish, not Chinese. But he's long been fascinated by Chinese poetry from the 9th century. For his new book he created a 9th century Chinese poet and he tells his life story through a series of poems.

Take a moment and consider how utterly amazing the mobile is. They hang over babies’ cribs, in classrooms, children’s museums, toy stores and candy shops. The whimsical moving sculptures that transform with the power of wind were invented by Alexander Calder in the 1930s.

Writer Marjorie Hudson is drawn to people who are lost, mostly because their journeys toward home fascinate her. She was lost herself once, living and working too hard in Washington D.C. When she came to visit a friend in the Triangle, she had a very visceral feeling of being found.

Terri Kirby Erickson's third volume of poetry, "In the Palms of Angels" (Press53/2011) won a 2012 Nautilus Silver Award for poetry. The national award is given for a book of poetry that “engenders compassion, wisdom, greater understanding, empathy, or passion through the artful use of language.”

North Carolina lost one of its most beloved writers and teachers this week. Doris Betts died of lung cancer at the age of 79.

Erik Lars Myers was disguised as your average IT guy, but he was also diligently spending his nights and weekends brewing beer in his backyard for 13 years. He found the world of beer so interesting that he wrote a popular blog about it called topfermented.com.

Writer Edith Pearlman has become an overnight sensation - but it took a half a century. Her most recent short story collection, "Binocular Vision" (Lookout Books/2011) won the National Book Critics Circle Award and was a finalist for nearly every big American book prize this year.

Slow money is a movement that grew out of the 2008 financial collapse. The first principle of that movement is to “bring money back down to earth.” It calls for investing in local farms and food products. On today's program we are going to consider the Slow Money movement in North Carolina and ask this question: what if we applied the principles of Slow Money to things beyond food and farms? What happens when we create a system that values businesses that create healthy local economies and environments?

Lizz Free or Die

Apr 13, 2012

Lizz Winstead is funny for a living. She travels the country doing stand-up comedy in clubs and at conferences, and she has an edge. In the spirit of Lenny Bruce and George Carlin, Winstead uses humor to pry into the hidden spaces of American culture.

In 1976 Judy Hogan was a poet, editor and young mother when she founded Carolina Wren Press in her Chapel Hill Apartment. At the time, she was dismayed at how difficult it was for women and poets of color to publish their work. So she took the extraordinary leap of starting a press.

Barbara Ras

Apr 11, 2012

Poet Barbara Ras's work has been called, "morally serious, poetically authentic, and spiritually discerning" by no less of an authority than C.K. Williams. He chose her book as the winner of the prestigious Walt Whitman award for first books in

Contraception, access to health care and representation in Congress are issues that motivated feminist activists in the early 1960s and, if Rush Limbaugh's recent time in the headlines is any indication, those issues persist. Women have been effecting social and political change across the South for more than a century, but, if you read the history of the women's movement in America, you'd think all of the action happened in the Northeast.

One of the rules of the U.S. Census is that all names must be kept anonymous for 72 years. Historians, genealogists and demographers are eagerly awaiting next week’s big reveal of 1940 Census data - names included.

Michael Franzak never had dreams of fighting for his country when he joined the Navy after high school, but he was desperate and had nowhere else to go.

Most of the managed wilderness in America is not national park but national forest. In North Carolina for instance, we have 4 of them, the Pisgah, Croatan, Uwharrie and the Nantahala, and together they are the size of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, more than a million acres.

Businessman Kevin Trapani will tell you that his company, Redwoods Group, does well by doing good. Redwoods Group recently won an award that validates his claim. B-Lab, an organization that certifies socially responsible companies known as B-corps,

Hiss Golden Messenger

Mar 9, 2012

Hiss Golden Messenger's music has been described as "mystical country" by David Bowie. Long a darling of the British rock press, the band is based in Durham, NC and is the brainchild of folklorist MC Taylor. Their latest album is called "Poor Moon.” Taylor joins host Frank Stasio in the studio to talk tunes and play some live.

In the mid-1990s, Shawn Rocco's job as a photojournalist for the News & Observer newspaper changed. Video was added to his duties and he often found himself on deadline, tangled in wire, with two different mediums demanding his attention. The pictures and the video were less than satisfying and, as an artist, he felt empty.

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