Social life and customs
Jan 17, 2014 — Insect-eating is catching on with some in the United States. But it's everyday behavior in many other cultures. Commentator Barbara J. King wonders how meat eaters and vegetarians in the U.S. react to dishes with grasshoppers and katydids as key ingredients.
Jan 13, 2014 — Organizers of the Winter Games are preparing to serve up quite a bit of the hearty, deep-red Russian soup. Which is kind of ironic, says Russian food writer Anya von Bremzen, since borscht carries with it complicated political implications. And not all borschts are created equal, she warns.
Jan 3, 2014 — In One Summer, at No. 5, Bill Bryson tells the true story of a few fascinating months of 1927.
Dec 27, 2013 — Charles Krauthammer's Things That Matter, at No. 3, features essays on sports, politics and culture.
Nov 22, 2013 — In The World Until Yesterday, at No. 8, Jared Diamond hails the wisdom of traditional societies.
Nov 22, 2013 — Dana Goodyear's new Anything That Moves is an eyes-(and-mouth)-wide-open trip through America's foodie subcultures, from raw food enthusiasts to underground supper clubs. Reviewer Jason Sheehan says Goodyear is a "fair guide to the underbelly," but doesn't exercise enough critical judgment when it comes to the crazier dishes.
Nov 17, 2013 — Author Dana Goodyear has spent a lot of time dining with foodies who champion bugs as a meal. And horses. And brains. Whales. Leaves. Weeds. Ash. Hay. Even plain dirt. Her new book documents the adventurous chefs and eaters who are redefining Americans' relationship with food.
Oct 28, 2013 — In softcover fiction, Tracy Chevalier follows an English Quaker across the Atlantic, Herman Koch serves a meal with a hefty helping of unease and Peter Sis brings an ancient flock of birds into the 21st century. In nonfiction, Jared Diamond mines lessons from traditional societies.
Oct 21, 2013 — At its core, StoryCorps founder Dave Isay says, the project is about letting people know their lives matter and won't be forgotten. The result often means that listeners have a good cry on their way to work. As the oral history project marks its 10th anniversary, NPR will be revisiting some of your favorite stories.
Oct 10, 2013 — Jo Baker's Longbourn retells the events of Pride and Prejudice from the point of view of the servants. Baker tells NPR Books editor Petra Mayer that the predicament of the Bennet sisters is well-known, so she wanted to explore the situation of the servant girls with no father, home or dowry.