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PRI: Latest Stories

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Updated 2018-08-16 21:22
As more women are incarcerated in Mexico, so are their babies
"Why is this kid in here?" one man says of the girl he adopted, who lived with her mom in prison until several years ago.
Poet Terrance Hayes is anything but invisible
Terrance Hayes may be the only poet to be named a MacArthur fellow, a National Book Award winner and one of People magazine’s “Sexiest Men Alive.”
Tracy K. Smith explores ‘Life on Mars’
How the U.S. poet laureate found inspiration in the sci-fi visions of David Bowie.
Ode to Justin Timberlake
Tracy K. Smith announces the winner of our listener poetry challenge: poems inspired by pop stars.
American Icons: ‘Leaves of Grass’
This is the poem that taught America to sing itself.
How a golden shipping container became one man’s portal to the world
There are more than 20 portals in about 15 different countries. At designated times they connect.
She was arrested for carrying a suitcase lined with cocaine into Canada. Her court case changed the law.
Cheyenne Sharma admitted transporting more than 4 pounds of cocaine into Canada. But her lawyers put the country's colonial history on trial.
Why we are so drawn to the letter 'X'
From X-rated to Gen X to Latinx, the meaning of "X" has shifted while retaining an edgy, transgressive quality.
Women filling Mexico's prisons are the 'lowest rungs of the drug trade'
The number of women going to jail in Mexico is on the rise. Many are single moms trying to support their families.
How Alabama is becoming the auto capital of the South
Just 25 years ago, Alabama used to be a place for textiles. Now it's a place to build cars.
He had a dream life in Seattle. Then Taiwan's military came calling.
In Taiwan, even men they have dual nationality, they have to serve in the military. And if they don't, they risk jail time. Dean Huang knew he would never see his family again if he didn't go back home to serve.
In drought-stricken Cape Town, parched residents gather at a watering hole
A natural spring in the shadow of Cape Town's Table Mountain provides a measure of relief — and a new pop-up community — for drought-strapped residents.
As opioids land more women in prison, Ohio finds alternative treatments
"We cannot arrest our way out of the problem," some advocates say.
Winnie Mandela, 'mother' then 'mugger' of new South Africa, dies at 81
Her uncompromising methods and refusal to forgive contrasted sharply with the reconciliation espoused by her husband Nelson Mandela as he worked to forge a stable, pluralistic democracy from the racial division and oppression of apartheid.
Russian 'green' trolls are targeting the US energy sector, House report claims
As the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 US election grinds on, a House committee also accuses the IRA, Russia’s Internet Research Agency, of trying to pit environmental activists against fossil fuel advocates.
The Northern right whale, already an endangered species, is in deep trouble
No new Northern right whale calves have been born so far this year — an unprecedented occurrence, according to scientists who study them.
Tensions over Jerusalem palpable during Good Friday, Passover celebrations
Jerusalem is indeed a city where three faiths come together, but it is also bracing for a big — and what many fear may be a divisive — moment next month when the US embassy will move from Tel Aviv to West Jerusalem.
The Good Friday dessert with roots in the Dominican Republic that I will not give up
It’s a fading tradition, but habas con dulce is a Holy Week staple in my family, migrating with us from the island to the United States.
After six years, this Nigerian mother and son will reunite — at the Final Four
But that is all set to change this weekend. When Udoka Azubuike leads his Kansas Jayhawks into the men's college basketball Final Four against Villanova in San Antonio, his mom should be cheering in the stands.
Braces from home: The next stage in global dental care?
As traditional business models continue to break down, entrepreneurs have their sights on one more area to disrupt: traditional orthodontics.
Journalist on water beat helped Cape Town avoid ‘Day Zero’
When Cape Town's growing water crisis started bubbling up last year, a local radio station in the South African city jumped on the beat with wall-to-wall coverage and water-saving tips for listeners.
Jess Thom turns her Tourette's into art
London artist and writer Jess Thom, who has Tourette syndrome, has transformed her quirky disability into raw material for other artists.
Laurie Anderson learns to be happy about unhappy things
After her husband’s death and a devastating flood, multimedia artist Laurie Anderson finds hope in the face of loss.
In Paris, volunteers rally to feed and house young people who are migrating to France on their own
Many are sleeping rough in the streets while they await asylum decisions.
When the Belly Room grew — and flopped — for female comics
In 1978, the Comedy Store gave female comedians a room of their own. This is the story of its complicated legacy.
These Moroccans are turning foggy days into a solution to their water crisis
Women and girls in a cluster of small Moroccan villages used to have to walk up to three hours a day to fetch water. Now, the villages get all the water they need from a new system of fog nets in the nearby mountains, and that means a lot more time available for work and school.
This POW kept a secret diary that showed daily life in a concentration camp
Tony Acevedo’s life was extraordinary. He was a Mexican American child of undocumented parents. He joined the US army in WWII but was captured, and singled out as an “undesirable” by his Nazi captors, and was then sent to a concentration camp.
Meet Pegg, a gender-neutral robot assistant
AI is reinforcing human stereotypes, says technologist Kriti Sharma. She's trying to change that.
How this undocumented lawyer is breaking more ground with no safety net
“I think it's more important than ever to be open about who we are,” says Lizbeth Mateo, who made news this month for being one of the few undocumented residents to be named to a statewide post in California.
'Day Zero' has been postponed, but Cape Town is still scrambling to deal with its water crisis
The water crisis in Cape Town, South Africa is easing a bit, but the city and many of its businesses and institutions are forging ahead with expensive efforts to increase supply, including private desalination plants.
After French Holocaust survivor’s murder, politics takes to the streets
The far-right National Front and hard-left France Unbowed movement on Wednesday said they would defy the wishes of a prominent Jewish group and take part in a march to honor a Holocaust survivor killed in a suspected anti-Semitic attack.
The three-letter word that rocked a nation
In 2012, Sweden erupted in a national debate over the pronoun "hen." Traditionally, Swedish has gendered pronouns when referring to people. There is no gender-neutral pronoun for people. "Hen" was a new word meant to fill a gap in the language. This week on The World in Words podcast we explore how a little-known and little-used word went mainstream in Sweden.
A teenager from the Central African Republic puts his faith in Divine Efficiency
It's not easy to make it in the Central African Republic. But Fortuné, a teenage entrepreneur, keeps trying. His latest project is a singing group.
Putin, amid emotional scenes at fatal fire scene, pledges action as anger mounts
The fire, at the Winter Cherry mall in the city of Kemerovo, killed 41 children, according to the Interfax news agency, and the calamitous way it was handled has stirred anger and focused attention on corruption and lax fire safety standards.
This Canadian First Nations group wants you to buy salmon raised on land
A First Nations group in British Columbia is trying to counter the environmental and economic impact of sea-based salmon farming by starting a new kind of salmon farm — on land. But the enterprise is fraught with challenges.
A March For Our Lives activist in Newark wants communities of color to be listened to
Jahne Benthall organized the March For Our Lives in Newark, N.J. While she's proud of what she did, she wants more attention to be to the gun violence that some communities of color face every day.
Egypt's revolutionaries grieve ahead of Sisi re-election
This week, Egypt will hold a presidential election, but observers believe the process is a charade. The only viable opposition candidates have been jailed, deported or silenced. And the only other candidate on the ballot, Moussa Mostafa Moussa, is actually a backer of Sisi, and has said he hopes the incumbent wins.
US teens around the globe organized March For Our Lives events because 'it doesn't have to be this way'
More than 800 sibling marches were held on Saturday. “This is about protecting our futures as well,” explains an organizer in Mumbai.
US and EU expel scores of Russian diplomats in response to UK nerve attack
Besides the United States, 14 European Union countries also expelled Russian diplomats in the biggest Western expulsion of Russian diplomats since the height of the Cold War.
Will Saudi women drive once ban is lifted? US car companies want to find out.
Saudi Arabia's King Salman issued a decree last year that lifted a decades-old ban on women driving in the Kingdom. The announcement caught many — including auto manufacturers — by surprise.
From Ford to Foxconn: A history of factories
Factories created the modern world, sometimes in ways that are rarely discussed.
For immigrant students, joining the ‘March for Our Lives’ is a fight for their own
As many thousands of students head to Washington, DC, for the student-led March for Our Lives, immigrant students are coming forward to lend their voices to the fight for gun reform.
Two priests from opposite sides of Northern Ireland's sectarian divide have something to say about forgiveness
The city of Derry/Londonderry in Northern Ireland is still healing from years of sectarian conflict. Two priests, one Catholic and the other Protestant, have written a book about how to get to true peace. The only way, they say, is through forgiveness.
A love story set in Paris after terror attacks, 'when fear threatens to cancel out empathy'
Wendell Steavenson's debut novel offers a nuanced portrait of the gulf between the West and the Arab world.
Cambridge Analytica's political work extends far beyond the US
The UK-based firm Cambridge Analytica is under fire for allegedly harvesting the data of tens of millions of Facebook users and using it to sway voters in the run-up to the 2016 Presidential election. But the data firm's reach extends well beyond the US.
How Matmos and Sō Percussion compose with cacti
In 2010, the two ensembles collaborated to make music from house plants and other ordinary objects.
Deterring grand theft auto with birdsong
Artist Nina Katchadourian transforms car alarms into bird calls.
Ben Mirin beatboxes with bird calls
A birdwatcher and beatboxer combines his two passions to make a totally original sound.
Theremin 101: How to sound like a flying saucer
Theremin virtuoso Pamelia Stickney teaches a lesson in the eerie electronic instrument.
The sound mind of Ben Burtt
The earthly origins of the alien sounds of “Star Wars” and “WALL-E.”