Talk of the Nation

Mon. - Thurs. from 11am to 1pm (not including Science Friday)
Hosted by: Neal Conan

Talk of the Nation® links the headlines with what's on people's minds, providing a springboard for listeners and experts to exchange ideas and pose critical questions about major events in the news and the world around them. Each day, Talk of the Nation combines the award-winning resources of NPR News with the vital participation of listeners. The result is a spirited and productive exchange of knowledge and insight that delves deeply into the news and ideas of the day.

Monday through Thursday, host Neal Conan invites callers to discuss areas of topical interest, including politics and public service, education, religion, music, and healthcare. Talk of the Nation goes behind the headlines with decision-makers, authors, thinkers, artists, and listeners around the world, who become part of the conversation by calling 1-800-989-TALK.

Talk of the Nation won the prestigious Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Silver Baton Award in 1994-95 for "The Changing of the Guard: The Republican Revolution," as well as the 1993-94 duPont-Columbia Silver Baton for part of NPR's coverage of the South African elections. The program also won the 1993 Corporation for Public Broadcasting Silver Award.

Below, you will find articles, transcripts, and clips of many of the stories heard on Talk of the Nation.

Visit Talk of the Nation on NPR.org

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Opinion
11:14 am
Mon May 21, 2012

Op-Ed: Send Message Of U.S.-NATO Solidarity

Originally published on Mon May 21, 2012 11:44 am

In recent years, critics have questioned the need for a U.S.-European alliance, originally formed to confront the Soviet Union. Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright argues the president and NATO leaders must reaffirm the importance of their union to U.S. security.

Education
11:14 am
Mon May 21, 2012

Students Find It's Tough To Graduate In Four Years

Originally published on Mon May 21, 2012 12:35 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan, in Washington. Only a little over half of fulltime students graduate with a bachelor's degree within six years of starting college. Educators blame the low rate on students who decide to adjust their course loads, take time off or drop out of school altogether.

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Television
11:14 am
Mon May 21, 2012

Networks Must Adapt To Decline In TV Viewers

Originally published on Mon May 21, 2012 11:39 am

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

Advertising executives gathered in New York City last week to get their first look at the fall primetime television lineup. The four big networks announced decisions to cancel some shows, including stalwarts like "CSI: Miami" and "Desperate Housewives." And they also welcomed newcomers, including lots and lots of new comedies. But this is all happening against the backdrop of a dwindling audience. It used to be that the network's losses were cable televisions gain, but cable ratings are also down.

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Food
10:53 am
Fri May 18, 2012

From Rooftops And Abandoned Lots, An Urban Harvest

From rooftop apiaries in Paris to a vegetable-and-chicken farm in Philadelphia, agriculture has come to the city. Urban farmer Mary Seton Corboy and food writer Jennifer Cockrall-King talk about the future of food in the city. Plus, Tama Matsuoka Wong gives tasty tips for eating garden weeds.

Health
10:30 am
Fri May 18, 2012

The Itching Question That's More Than Skin Deep

Studies show that the power of suggestion can induce itchiness — but scientists don't know what this irritation is, what causes it, or why it feels so good to cure. Marc Abrahams, editor of the Annals of Improbable Research, talks about how talking about the science of itches might have you scratching right now.

NPR Story
10:25 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Planning For A Solar Sky Show

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 10:36 am

On May 20th, skywatchers in the western third of the United States will be treated to an annular solar eclipse, a sight not seen here in 18 years. Dean Regas of the Cincinnati Observatory shares tips for viewing the eclipse, and tells how solar observers can safely get a peek at the elusive 'ring of fire.'

NPR Story
10:25 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Stroke Victims Think, Robotic Arm Acts

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 10:44 am

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

(Unintelligible) at the beginning of the program about Cathy Hutchinson having not being able to drink anything without the help of caregivers for 15 years. She was paralyzed from the neck down. But she's very famous, very famous this week, because thanks to new technology described in the journal Nature, she took a very famous sip of coffee this week. You probably saw it on television or the Internet.

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NPR Story
10:25 am
Fri May 18, 2012

Rerouting Working Nerves To Restore Hand Function

Originally published on Fri May 18, 2012 10:54 am

A paralyzed man with a spinal cord injury to the C7 vertebrae is able to move his fingers again. Surgeons at Washington University School of Medicine rerouted working nerves in the patient's upper arms to restore some hand function. Dr. Ida Fox discusses the procedure described in the Journal of Neurosurgery.

NPR Story
10:25 am
Fri May 18, 2012

On Eve Of Launch, SpaceX Head Talks About Mission

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

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Remembrances
11:16 am
Thu May 17, 2012

One 'Last Dance' With Disco Queen Donna Summer

Donna Summer, who sang some of the most memorable anthems of the disco era from "Love to Love You Baby" to "Bad Girls," has died after a long battle with cancer. She had a top 40 hit every year from 1976 to 1984, including the song she once told NPR she'd perform till the very end, "Last Dance."

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