Amid chanting and drumming, a crowd gathers in Sao Paulo and waits for the gods to come to them from the spirit world.
They are celebrating a sacred festival day in honor of Omulu, a deity of life and death. The women wear white dresses with crinolines, colorful belts and headdresses. The men wear lace, pajama-style suits. They sing and dance in a circle for hours; the room gets warmer, the chanting more intense.
Suddenly, they are here: Orixas have possessed the chosen among the faithful. They are spirit gods, the deified ancestors who link humans to the other world.
Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 8:10 am
The sprawling Washington Navy Yard, scene of a deadly shooting Monday, is the Navy's oldest shore establishment and has long been considered the "ceremonial gateway" to the nation's capital.
The yard went into operation at the turn of the 19th century. Today, it employs thousands of people and is regarded as the "quarterdeck of the Navy" for its role as headquarters for the Naval District Washington.
Originally published on Mon September 16, 2013 3:29 pm
Thousands of North Korean defectors have made their way to the South, but it rarely goes in the opposite direction. So, news that South Korean troops at the border shot and killed a man trying to swim north across the Imjin River is unusual.
Jazz pianist Art Hodes, born in Russia in 1904, grew up near Chicago. His recording career really took off in the 1940s in New York, where he also hosted a radio show and wrote for the magazine The Jazz Record. Later, he moved back to Chicago and the atmosphere that nurtured him.
We will go to NPR's business news in a moment. Right now, let's get an update on what we do know about a shooting at the U.S. Navy Yard in Washington, D.C. today. We have to begin by being frank. What we do not know exceeds what we do. NPR's Jennifer Ludden is on the scene of that shooting today - or near it - and she's on line. And Jennifer, what have you been learning?
Originally published on Mon September 16, 2013 11:26 am
The U.S.-Russia plan to rid Syria of chemical weapons by next summer faces many hurdles and includes "unrealistic" deadlines, says former U.N. weapons inspector David Kay, who worked on efforts to detail chemical weapons in Iraq.
Kay says the plan will require an international military presence — "boots on the ground" — to make sure the weapons don't fall into the wrong hands.
NPR's Sylvia Poggioli on the salvaging of the Costa Concordia
The effort to shift the luxury cruise ship Consta Concordia into an upright position has begun, and several news outlets are streaming their coverage of what's said to be the biggest such operation of its kind ever.
In 1892, Mansfield University held the first night football game. Brand-new electric lights illuminated the field, just not very well. Squinting in the darkness, players tackled their own teammates and even the ref. Mansfield abandoned night games until this past Saturday, then the Pennsylvania school defeated Princeton. The athletic director says the 121-year pause between night games allowed time to work out the bugs.
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