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4:41 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Branagh Imagines Mozart's 'Magic Flute' In Wartime

Pamina (Amy Carson) and Tamino (Joseph Kaiser) in Kenneth Branagh's production of Mozart's The Magic Flute.
Revolver Group

Mozart's The Magic Flute, the last opera he lived to complete, has some of his most sublime and sublimely comic music. Technically, it's more of a musical comedy, what in German is called a Singspiel, a play with songs and spoken dialogue. I was excited to learn that it was filmed by Kenneth Branagh, whose Shakespeare movies I really admire. Mozart's mixture of fairy tale and high morality presents a great opportunity for a filmmaker; in 1975, Ingmar Bergman released a version for Swedish television that has become a beloved classic.

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The Two-Way
4:39 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Calif. Judge Rules Yoga In Public Schools Not Religious

Third-graders at Olivenhain Pioneer Elementary School in Encinitas, Calif., perform chair pose with instructor Kristen McCloskey in December 2012.
Kyla Calvert for NPR

Earlier this year, we told you about some parents in the San Diego area who were suing the Encinitas Union School District to stop yoga classes because they believed the ancient Indian practice had religious overtones. Well, today we have a decision in that case: A judge ruled that the school district was not teaching religion when it offered elementary school students yoga classes.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
4:29 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

An Atheist Monument Rises In Florida

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 5:10 pm

As NPR reported over the weekend, the first monument to atheism erected on government property in the United States has been dedicated in Florida.

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The Two-Way
3:29 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Top Vatican Bank Officials Resign

Ernst von Freyberg, president of the Vatican Bank Institute for Works of Religion, or IOR, talks with The Associated Press during an interview June 10 at his office in Vatican City. He was named the bank's interim director on Monday after the director and the deputy director both resigned.
Domenico Stinellis AP

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 8:42 pm

Two top officials of the Vatican bank resigned Monday just days following the arrest of a senior cleric with ties to the institution after police caught him with the equivalent of about $26 million in cash that they say he was trying to bring into Italy from Switzerland.

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The Salt
2:48 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Experimental Treatment For Milk Allergy May Not Last

Researchers are learning more about how to treat milk allergy by giving kids a small amount of milk protein, but it needs further study.
MICHAEL PROBST ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 5:22 pm

One out of every 13 children has a food allergy, but the affliction still regularly stumps doctors. As Kari Nadeau, director of the Stanford Alliance for Food Allergy Research, told Terry Gross in April on Fresh Air, researchers still don't understand what "flips the switch between a food allergen versus a food nutrient in children."

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Author Interviews
2:34 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

From Kids' Books To Erotica, Tomi Ungerer's 'Far Out' Life

Tomi Ungerer's 1967 book Moon Man follows its lonely protagonist as he visits Earth for the very first time.
Tomi Ungerer

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 4:00 pm

Children's-book writer Maurice Sendak learned a lot from author and artist Tomi Ungerer. In Far Out Isn't Far Enough, a new documentary about Ungerer, Sendak says, "I learned to be braver than I was. I think that's why [Where The Wild Things Are] was partly Tomi — his energy, his spirit.

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Code Switch
2:32 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

The Secret History Of The Word 'Cracker'

Fun with homonyms!
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 10:21 am

As you might have gathered from our blog's title, the Code Switch team is kind of obsessed with the ways we speak to each other. Every Monday in "Word Watch," we'll dig into language that tells us something about the way race is lived in America today. (Interested in contributing? Holler at this form.)

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It's All Politics
2:29 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

How To Turn A Red State Blue: California Edition

Republicans celebrated when California Gov. Pete Wilson was re-elected in 1994. But his divisive campaign led to a backlash, especially among the growing Latino population in the state.
Kevork Djansezian AP

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 6:11 pm

All this week, NPR is taking a look at the demographic changes that could reshape the political landscape in Texas over the next decade — and what that could mean for the rest of the country.

Democrats who hope to turn Texas from red to blue are looking to California for inspiration.

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The Two-Way
2:28 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Nelson Mandela Is In Critical But Stable Condition, In Latest Update

A family brings a message of good wishes for former South African President Nelson Mandela outside his house in Johannesburg Monday. Mandela, 94, is in critical but stable condition.
Stephane De Sakutin AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 2, 2013 6:07 am

The condition of former South African leader Nelson Mandela is "still critical but stable," according to the office of President Jacob Zuma. Mandela, 94, has been in a Pretoria hospital since June 8 with a lung infection.

In the first official update on Mandela's health since Thursday, the presidency also urged people to prepare for the beloved rights activist's birthday later this month.

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The Salt
1:58 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Sandwich Monday: The Famous St. Paul Sandwich (of St. Louis)

This exists.
NPR

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 12:28 pm

Since Sandwich Monday began, certain sandwiches have been our white whales: the Hippogriff Burger, a Reuben signed by J.D. Salinger, an Actual White Whale sandwich. Also, the mysterious St.Paul sandwich, native to St. Louis: It's an egg foo young patty, with lettuce, pickle and mayo, on white bread. But we finally caught one.

Miles: This is the same sandwich my Model U.N. group made the first time we all got high together.

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Krulwich Wonders...
1:40 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

A Beautiful Notion: That Caterpillars Killed Off The Dinosaurs

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Tue July 2, 2013 11:52 am

For the last hundred years, scientists have been wondering why the dinosaurs disappeared so quickly. Was there one key reason, or several?

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Shots - Health News
1:25 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

HIV Treatment Should Start Even Earlier, WHO Says

Women in Bangalore, India, make red ribbons at an HIV support center in November 2012.
Manjunath Kiran AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 2, 2013 3:10 pm

Getting people on HIV drugs even before they get sick helps them live longer and slows the spread of virus, the World Health Organization said Sunday.

The number of new HIV infections has dropped by 20 percent worldwide since the push to expand HIV treatment worldwide began in 2002. The medications prevented about 4 million deaths from AIDS-related problems in developing countries, the WHO report says.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
1:09 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Chest Hair, Breast Milk And Human Disgust

Commissioned by Wing-Co. for an ad campaign, the maker of this coat says it contains over one million strands of male chest hair.
Wing-Co.

Would you wear a coat made entirely of male chest hair?

As part of an advertising campaign to cast a new chocolate milk drink as a "manly" beverage, the British branch of an international dairy company commissioned the "Man-Fur Coat," created from chest hair donated by 300 male volunteers.

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The Two-Way
12:43 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Jim Kelly, Actor In 'Enter The Dragon,' Dies

This 1973 photo released by Warner Bros. Entertainment shows Jim Kelly as Williams in a scene from Enter the Dragon. Kelly, who played a glib American martial artist in the movie, died Saturday of cancer at his home in San Diego. He was 67.
AP

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 12:57 pm

Jim Kelly, who rose to fame in the Bruce Lee classic Enter the Dragon and went on to star in several blaxploitation films, has died. He was 67.

NPR's Hansi Lo Wang reported on Kelly's death for our Newscast unit. Here's what he said:

"Black Belt Jones, Three the Hard Way and Black Samurai — all starring Jim Kelly as an African-American martial arts master — busy looking good in a funky Afro.

"Kelly's break-out role was in the Bruce Lee classic Enter the Dragon.

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The Two-Way
11:55 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Heat Wave Will Bake Southwest For Most Of This Week

The National Weather Service predicts triple-digit temperatures in the Southwest until at least Wednesday. The temperature in Death Valley hit 128 degrees Sunday, a record high for June in the United States.
NOAA

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 2:53 pm

The record-breaking heat that has broiled the Southwest since Friday shows no signs of letting up. According to the National Weather Service, "triple-digit temperatures will be common across the Southwest" through at least Wednesday.

The temperature in Death Valley — where the temperature reached 134 degrees in 1913, the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth — hit 128 degrees Sunday. That mark set a record high for the month of June in the U.S. The weather service says to expect similar heat today.

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