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Wax Tablets, Chicken Rustling And The Medieval Roots Of The Modern University

Universities have changed significantly since the Middle Ages. James Axtell describes just how far higher education has come in his new book, Wisdom's Workshop.

'It Was Torture': An Abu Ghraib Interrogator Acknowledges 'Horrible Mistakes'

The techniques Eric Fair used still weigh on his conscience. "There is no middle ground," he says. "Torture is an enhanced interrogation." His new memoir is Consequence.

Just Turned 40? An Architect Says It's Time To Design For Aging

An architect looked at communities that serve older adults, and didn't like what he saw. By changing habits earlier in life, he says, we can create vibrant communities that will sustain us.

WAMU 88.5

Antoine Van Agtmael And Fred Bakker: "The Smartest Places On Earth: Why Rustbelts Are The Emerging Hotspots Of Global Innovation"

New research by an economist and a journalist on the emerging "brain belts" of America. Why some rust belt cities like Akron, Ohio; Albany, New York; and Portland, Oregon are becoming the hotspots of global innovation.


'Music Was Always This Anchor': A Story Of Soul And Struggle

Rashod Ollison's memoir Soul Serenade is a coming-of-age story and playlist combined. He says he "could always tell" his mother's mood "by which Aretha Franklin song was on."

How To Get Kids Hooked On Books? 'Use Poetry. It Is A Surefire Way'

Newbery Medal-winning author Kwame Alexander's new effort is a novel about a 12-year-old boy named Nick, written in verse. He says poetry is one key to keeping kids invested in what they're reading.

How A Woman's 'True Crime' Addiction Helped Her Work Through A Traumatic Past

Author Kathryn Harrison's new book of essays is about her own family. She talks to Rachel Martin about coming to terms with one of the worst crimes that happened to her, perpetrated by her own father.

Jimmy V, Coach K And Dean Smith: The 3 Legends Of N.C. Basketball

Sports columnist John Feinstein talks about his new book, The Legends Club, which follows the rivalry and friendship between three of college basketball's biggest coaches in the '80s.

What Our Relationship To 'Junk' Says About America Through Generations

What to keep and what to throw away? Alison Stewart talks with NPR's Scott Simon about her new book "Junk: Digging Through America's Love Affair With Stuff."

When It Comes To Talking Sex, Young Adult Books Can Be A Parent's Best Friend

Today's young adult novels deal with consent, sexual assault and the pressures of sexting, among other things. For parents who aren't comfortable broaching those subjects, these books can help.