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August 28, 2014 | NPR · For the first time, researchers have tracked the spread of Ebola, almost in real time, during an outbreak. The virus is quickly changing its genetic code. But it's unclear what the mutations mean.
 
August 29, 2014 | NPR · French President Francois Hollande is under pressure to fix the country's economy, which is overburdened by regulation and failing a generation of young people. He's also facing calls for austerity.
 
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August 29, 2014 | NPR · Congressman and former Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan discusses his new book, The Way Forward: Renewing the American Idea.
 

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August 29, 2014 | NPR · The Obama administration is considering whether to broaden its air campaign against the extremist group the Islamic State by striking targets in Syria.
 
August 29, 2014 | NPR · Regular political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and David Brooks of The New York Times, discuss the latest in Ukraine and the actions of ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
 
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August 29, 2014 | NPR · An earthquake in Napa Valley this week brought back old fears for author Gustavo Arellano. In his anxiety he's revisiting the book A Crack in the Edge of the World.
 

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August 23, 2014 | NPR · Nearly 1,500 people have died in the Ebola outbreak, and more nations in the region are closing their borders. NPR's Scott Simon speaks to Africa correspondent Ofeibea Quist-Arcton about the epidemic.
 

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August 24, 2014 | NPR · In the wake of violent clashes between protesters and police in Ferguson, Mo., President Obama is ordering a review of the federal programs that help local police departments purchase military gear.
 

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Political aspects

Nov 12, 2013 — Science, politics and policy often make for a wicked mix, says commentator Adam Frank. Understanding each for what it really is should help put us on the path to making better decisions for our future.
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Sep 16, 2013 — In softcover nonfiction, Stephen Tobolowski recalls his time as a character actor, Walter Stahr profiles Lincoln's adviser, David Byrne relates his ideas on music and Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson investigate failing states. In fiction, Attica Locke weaves a murder mystery in the Deep South.
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Sep 7, 2013 — Author Jesse Walker argues that believing in shadowy cabals and ominous secrets isn't just for people on the margins — it's as American as apple pie. He says that our nation's paranoia stretches back to the colonial era, and that some conspiracy theories are believed by a majority of Americans.
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May 31, 2013 — Historian Mary Louise Roberts' new book explores the interactions between soldiers and French women after the U.S. liberated France. She found that American soldiers horrified some towns by having sex with prostitutes in public places, and 1944 saw a wave of rape accusations against GIs.
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Mar 28, 2013 — Athletes used to lead the charge for social change all the time, but as sports figures started making more in endorsement deals, their politics sometimes took a backseat to their pocketbooks. Sportswriter Dave Zirin's new book is about the uneasy confluence of sports and politics over the years.
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Jan 15, 2013 — In Words From the White House, linguist Paul Dickson looks at the ways presidents have used the office to create and shape American language. Presidents, Dickson says, must be eloquent and spontaneous, but they also need to communicate in a way that gives listeners something to latch onto.
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Nov 8, 2012 — Since the end of the Cold War, many Americans have largely dismissed the threat of nuclear war. But Paul Bracken warns that Americans feel a misguided sense of calm. In The Second Nuclear Age, he argues that the second age of nuclear politics has arrived and the U.S. must face a new nuclear reality.
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Sep 20, 2012 — Thomas Frank analyzes the U.S. political divide, Siddhartha Deb looks into the heart of India, Emmanuel Carrere writes about the 2004 tsunami, and comic actress Mindy Kaling laughs at everything. In fiction, Britain's Alan Hollinghurst follows the evolution of English society.
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Jul 3, 2012 — Author Rajiv Chandrasekaran believes the U.S. has made multiple miscalculations in waging war in Afghanistan. In his new book, Little America, he says America should have learned from a largely forgotten U.S. adventure undertaken there a half-century earlier.
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Jul 2, 2012 — In his new book Little America, Washington Post correspondent Rajiv Chandrasekaran traces the decision-making process by senior American military officials during the 2009 troop surge in Afghanistan and analyzes their struggle to develop successful policies on the ground.
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