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Microbiome Candy: Could A Probiotic Mint Help Prevent Cavities?

Lacing a sugar-free candy with the right kind of bacteria might one day help fight off tooth decay, a study suggests. The experimental mint lowered the levels of cavity-causing bacteria in volunteers' saliva. But the microbe candy still has a long way to go before it reaches shelves at Walgreens.
NPR

Surveillance Revelations Give Creative Writers Pause

A recent survey by the PEN American Center, a nonprofit writers group, suggests that recent revelations about government surveillance are affecting creative expression. David Greene talks about the survey with David Simon, the writer and producer who created the HBO series The Wire, among other hits, and Azar Nafisi, author of Reading Lolita in Tehran.
NPR

Art Or Junk? Detroit's 'Heidelberg Project' Endures

An outdoor art installation in Detroit made from blighted homes and objects is stirring up controversy again. A rash of arsons in the past seven months have destroyed four of the Heidelberg Project's signature homes. But after nearly 30 decades of working on this project and facing resistance, artist Tyree Guyton is determined to make more art.
NPR

Royal Gardener Planted The Seed Of Urban Planning At Versailles

Andre Le Notre helped turn an old hunting lodge into the Versailles we know today, taking his profession way beyond a trade. Experts say Le Notre's work was so groundbreaking, it continues to influence contemporary urban architecture. This year marks the 400th anniversary of Le Notre's birth.
NPR

Dear Zack Snyder, Regarding Wonder Woman

NPR comics blogger and pop-culture podcaster Glen Weldon has a few words for director Zack Snyder about the casting news that's gotten him in such hot water.
NPR

Delia Ephron On The Closeness And Complexity Of Sisterhood

Novelist Delia Ephron says that losing her older sister Nora was like "losing an arm." But for all their collaboration and closeness, Delia writes about the complications of sisterhood in her new collection of autobiographical essays, Sister Mother Husband Dog (etc.).
NPR

'In Meat We Trust' Argues We Got The Meat Industry We Asked For

Historian Maureen Ogle's new book examines the rise of our modern industrial meat system by examining its roots — all the way back to Colonial America. There's a fundamental disconnect, she argues, in our demands for both cheap, plentiful meat and an end to factory farms. Something, she says, has to give.
NPR

After A Full Fall, A Few New TV Choices To Tide You Over

November is over and so is the big fall TV season. But there are bright gifts among the off-season also-rans, including TNT's Mob City and a French series about the undead.
NPR

'Getting Away With Murder': A Study Of Benazir Bhutto's Death

Former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated in 2007. Heraldo Munoz, who led the United Nations investigation into her death, portrays the tense political climate that surrounded Bhutto's return to politics and the circumstances of the killing in his new book.
NPR

Don't You Dare Call Me A Hipster! I, Sir, Am A 'Hep Cat'

Jive-talking, jazz-loving "hep cats" from the 1930s and 1940s are the great-grandparents of today's hipsters. The interest of white fans in black music helped fill Harlem's nightclubs and prompted derision. Hipsters were criticized for being the equivalent of a "pretentious poet laureate."

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