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In Tough Times, Dolly Parton Makes A 'Joyful Noise'

The actress and singer's new film follows a small-town church that faces hard times with hallelujahs. Parton, the American icon who came from humble beginnings, says it's a story many people can relate to these days.
NPR

Gender Controversy Stacks Up Against 'Lego Friends'

Lego introduced a new lineup of toys earlier this month meant to appeal to girls. But a petition posted on Change.org is calling on the toy maker to stop distinguishing between toys for girls and those for boys. So far, the petition has amassed over 47 thousand signatures. Host Michel Martin speaks with one of the sponsors of that petition, Bailey Shoemaker Richards.
NPR

The Man Who Studies The Fungus Among Us

Botanist Nicholas Money's book Mushroom takes readers inside the world of the fungal organisms that appear overnight on lawns, are occasionally poisonous and appear in everything from Alice in Wonderland to some lifesaving medications.
NPR

Virtual Victuals: A Gamer Turns Video Game Food Into Real Food

Mushrooms and cherries first taught gamers what food can do in games. Now, one gamer has taken the food from the virtual world and put it on the dinner plate.
NPR

Michael Fassbender: Portraying An Addict's 'Shame'

In the past year, actor Michael Fassbender has played a mutant villain in X-Men: First Class, psychoanalyst Carl Jung in A Dangerous Method, Mr. Rochester in Jane Eyre and a sex addict in Shame. He discusses several of these roles, as well as his part in Inglourious Basterds.
NPR

Indian Lit Festival Invitation To Author Salman Rushdie Stirs Controversy

Muslim groups want the Indian-born author of Satanic Verses to be denied entry into the country. Rushdie is due to attend the Jaipur Literary Festival there later this week.
NPR

'The Flame Alphabet': When Language Turns Toxic

In this chilling dystopian novel by Ben Marcus, the speech of children begins poisoning adults, and a married couple must consider abandoning their teenage daughter to save themselves.
WAMU 88.5

'Art Beat' With Sean Rameswaram, Jan. 18

Rez Abassi’s and Rudresh Mahanthappa’s genre-bending jazz sounds, Russian ballet at The Kennedy Center.

NPR

Does The Queen of Unhealthy Eating Have To Eat Her Words?

Paula Deen became rich and beloved by selling greasy, sugary Southern comfort food. Now she's got Type 2 diabetes. Can the queen of indulgence promote excess while also promoting a healthy lifestyle? Heaven knows, she's trying.
NPR

'Tuesdays With Dorie': A Community In The Kitchen

In 2008, an online community of bakers vowed to bake one recipe a week from Dorie Greenspan's cookbook Baking: From My Home to Yours. Four years and 370 recipes later, the enthusiastic cooks finished baking all of the galettes and cobblers in December 2011.

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