The State of Things

M-F 12 Noon, M-Th 8p, Sat 6a

We bring the issues, personalities, and places of North Carolina to you. We're a live show, and we want to hear from listeners. Call 1.877.962.9862, email sot@wunc.org, or tweet @state_of_things. Follow us on Facebook .

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State of Things
12:57 pm
Tue July 12, 2011

A Fresh Start to Find a Job

In a move to help reduce the rate of unemployment, more North Carolinians are getting a clean slate. In the last 10 years, expungements of criminal records have tripled.

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State of Things
12:47 pm
Tue July 12, 2011

Taking Refuge in the Great Dismal Swamp

Great Dismal Swamp
Credit http://www.fws.gov/northeast/greatdismalswamp/

It's tough to imagine the 112,000 muck-filled, bug-swarmed acres of the Great Dismal Swamp looking like paradise. But for enslaved people in the 18th- and 19th-century, the swamp provided protection from those who wished to keep them in bondage.

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State of Things
12:43 pm
Tue July 12, 2011

Honing in on Highway Safety

A fiery tractor trailer crash on I-40 claimed three lives earlier this month and the trucking company involved had numerous safety violations. The accident was one of the latest in a recent rash of deadly highway crashes involving big rigs. Other major accidents in recent months involved budget bus lines that also that have long lists of citations for, among other things, driver fatigue.

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State of Things
11:29 am
Mon July 11, 2011

Meet Josh Whiton

Josh Whiton
Credit www.joshwhiton.com

North Carolina entrepreneur Josh Whiton had his first business at the age of five when he sold tadpoles to his neighborhood friends. Now, he is the CEO of TransLoc Inc., a company that tracks city buses in real time.

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State of Things
1:14 pm
Fri July 8, 2011

The Wildlife of our Bodies

Book cover, ''The Wildlife of Our Bodies''

The world we live in is a complex, evolving ecosystem. North Carolina State University ecologist and evolutionary biologist Rob Dunn wanted to explore how mankind’s interaction with other living species has come to define who we are and why we act the way we do. He found that the human body itself plays host to a myriad of living creatures, some good and some bad, and that our relationships with these life forms are as mysterious as they are vital to our existence.

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State of Things
1:08 pm
Fri July 8, 2011

The Mountain Goats

Mountain Goats
Credit www.mountain-goats.com

Musician John Darnielle got his start by recording tunes on a boombox in the early 1990s. To his surprise, folks went crazy for his lo-fi sound and his band, The Mountain Goats, quickly formed a huge cult following that spans the globe. The band’s 7th album, “All Eternals Deck,” was recently released on Merge Records. For it, Darnielle abandoned the nostalgic vibe that initially earned him critical acclaim and turned to horror flicks from the 1970s for inspiration.

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State of Things
12:28 pm
Thu July 7, 2011

The Origins of Obesity

Female ''obeastus mortuus'' from the fictional Museum of Obeast Conservation Studies

More than 190 million people in the United States are overweight. That’s two-thirds of the American population and almost half of that number are obese. Research into the causes of obesity is showing that much more than willpower is needed to tackle it. Obesity has ties to addiction and depression and a person's environment may play a bigger role than once thought.

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State of Things
11:58 am
Wed July 6, 2011

The Problem With Work

Economists say the recession is officially over, but many people remain out of work and the unemployed are still feeling the effects of the down economy. But new research suggests that those who never lost their jobs are also still suffering. Some took on twice the responsibilities for no new pay or reduced pay. The effect of that kind of pressure has yet to be studied but experts suspect we will feel the strain at work and at home for years to come.

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State of Things
9:00 am
Tue July 5, 2011

Meet Jock Brandis

After volunteering as a high school teacher in the slums of Jamaica and serving the people of Nigeria during a devastating civil war, Jock Brandis found himself mentally exhausted and disillusioned. He left the service life for work in the film industry, a career move that took him to Wilmington, N.C. But a colleague persuaded Brandis to return to Africa, where he met a group of women peanut shellers in Mali. He wound up inventing a peanut shelling machine – the Universal Nut Sheller – to help them with their work.

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State of Things
9:00 am
Fri July 1, 2011

30 Americans

What are the advantages and disadvantages of being labeled an “African-American artist”? That question is at the heart of a new exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Art. It features the works of 31 contemporary artists - photography, video, sculpture and more – with each piece revealing a bit about the experience of blacks in America. Host Frank Stasio discusses the “30 Americans” exhibit with Durham photographer Titus Brooks Heagins and Richard Powell, the John Spencer Bassett professor of art and art history at Duke University.

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