The State of Things

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Get a daily show update, and special news.

Rosemary Thornton may have driven by your house a few times. She may have even slowed down, whipped out her camera and snapped a few pictures. But, she’s not casing the place. Thornton is documenting history. If she’s interested in your dwelling, it’s likely you live in a kit home, a mail-order house that could be purchased out of a catalog in the early 20th century.

Ntozake Shange’s 1977 choreopoem, “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf” rocked audiences when it was initially staged in California and later on Broadway. It has since been performed on stage countless times around the world and was recently adapted into a film directed by Tyler Perry.

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.

In a new News & Observer series, reporter Joe Neff uncovered tough, unethical tactics that hospitals use to make money. Neff writes that hospital CEOs get big paydays while poor patients are subject to ruthless harassment from bill collectors. Host Frank Stasio talks to Neff about how North Carolina hospitals are making big profits and driving up the costs of health care for everybody.

Wiley Cash's debut novel, "A Land More Kind than Home" (William Morrow/2012), captures the cadence and character of a small, western North Carolina town. After a dangerous preacher causes the death of one townsperson, tragedy strikes

If 6 Was 9

May 15, 2012

David Klein is obsessed with numbers. More specifically, he’s interested in songs with numbers in their titles. Klein has written a whole book about it, covering the numbers 1 through 33, and he plans to ultimately take this project all the way up to 100.

Singer-songwriter Tom Maxwell was an eyewitness to how the Chapel Hill, NC music scene changed in the 1990s after it was dubbed “the new Seattle” by music critics. Suddenly, local rock bands were being courted and exploited by major record labels and making music became less fun for Maxwell.

This is How

May 11, 2012

Augusten Burroughs, best-selling author of "Running with Scissors," has bared his soul to the world on everything from his dysfunctional adolescence to his struggles with alcoholism. Now, he's ready to take some of those experiences and use them to help others.

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.

Jo Gore and The Alternative

May 11, 2012

It's no surprise that Jo Gore's got a thing for soul and jazz. She grew up singing in the choir at a Columbus County Baptist Church, and soul music was a regular sound in her house.

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