National Partners

Stories from our program partners, including NPR, APM, and PRI.

Sumaya Hisham/Reuters

On March 10, 2015, a student threw excrement at the statute of Cecil Rhodes at the University of Cape Town in South Africa.

It was a symbolic gesture of protest against the British imperialist and avowed white supremacist who some call the “architect of apartheid.”

Donald Trump is not known for his strong grasp of history. But in controversial unscripted remarks this week, Trump claimed "leftists" were trying to rewrite history by destroying monuments.

“This week it's Robert E. Lee. I notice that Stonewall Jackson is coming down,” he said on Tuesday, referring to the top two generals of the Confederacy in the Civil War. “I wonder,” he continued, “is it George Washington next week? And is it Thomas Jefferson the week after. You really do have to ask yourself, where does it stop?"

Joshua Roberts/Reuters

I moved to Charlottesville, Virginia, in September 2003. The beautiful college town was heaven that month. Gorgeous leaves. Blue skies. Gentle breezes.

I fell in love with Charlottesville. I lived there for eight years and it remains my favorite city.

But my heart broke to see the streets there filled with anger and hate just a few days ago.

Braunau am Inn would like to be an ordinary town, like its neighbors in this river valley on Austria's border with Germany. But it's not, thanks to an unwanted native son — Adolf Hitler. Hitler was born here in 1889 and was still in diapers when he left. But that's enough for Braunau to still be known as Hitler's hometown.

Richard Russo and Jenny Boylan on plot twists in books — and life

Aug 17, 2017

Richard Russo was in his early 40s when he published "Nobody's Fool" in 1993. The novel focused on the residents of a fictional mill town in upstate New York called Bath, including Sully, who Paul Newman played in the movie version of the book, and his slow-on-the-uptake friend, Rub.

Guilty pleasure: The word 'moist'

Aug 17, 2017
Carrie Arsenault

People really hate the word moist. The little adjective has been voted out of the dictionary, endured tirade after tirade on blogs and forums, and even prompted a scientific investigation into its unpleasantness.

The writer was born in Nigeria; the tale comes from medieval Germany; the setting is a small New England town in the 1950s.

Johnathan Alcorn / Reuters 

Claudia Rankine’s book of poetry, “Citizen: An American Lyric,” won the the National Book Critic Circle Award in Poetry, and was the first book ever nominated in two categories — poetry and criticism. That reflects the book’s varied literary approaches as well as its timely, acute critique of contemporary American culture.

Courtesy of Jessica Jinn/Advancing Justice

Jason Fong is at the age when affirmative action programs could make a crucial difference in his life. He’s 17 and often uses social media and his blog to speak out about college admissions policies that consider race as a factor to create a diverse student body.

Despite a growing fossil fuel export business, the U.S. economy has actually seen its emissions of carbon dioxide fall the last two decades. A new analysis lists the specific reasons, and there are many: more natural gas burned instead of coal, more wind and solar power, more efficient factories and cars. But tomorrow's path to lowering emissions may look very different as new technologies come online and more things run on green electricity.

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Changes at the top for Wells Fargo

Aug 17, 2017

Scandal-besieged Wells Fargo seems to be cleaning up its act. It's replacing three of 15 board members, including the chairman. Stephen Sanger will step down at the end of the year and current Vice Chair Elizabeth Duke will take his place. Is this a real change for the bank?

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Are we at economic war with China?

Aug 17, 2017

Déjà vu all over again? A Trump administration official has called a reporter up and had a very candid, shall we say, colorful conversation, which he maybe did, maybe didn't think was on the record. This time, the official was White House chief strategist Steve Bannon who said: "We're at economic war with China." Bannon said he thinks the U.S. is losing. How much truth is there in that? How are economic relations between the U.S. and China?

At his Tuesday press conference in New York, during which he discussed the recent violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, President Trump spoke about his theory on how to overcome America's racial divides. He said, "We have many companies, I say pouring back into the country. I think that's going to have a huge, positive impact on race relations. You know why? It's jobs. What people want now, they want jobs. They want great jobs with good pay and, when they have that, you watch how race relations will be."

Women CEOs outperform men, so why aren't companies giving them the top job?

Aug 17, 2017

When you look at the largest companies in the country, few of them have female CEOs or even female board members. Some high-profile female CEOs have been forced out of their jobs recently. Yet, companies led by women tend to have better returns than those that aren't. So what gives?

If you've been paying attention to some of President Trump's recent public remarks, you might've noticed something (besides all that). He often leads with the economy, the stock market or his economic agenda and how great it's gonna be. In his extraordinary press conference on Tuesday, he even pointed to jobs as a way to fix race relations. That argument seemed a bit tidy, so we called up an expert to check the facts. That presser was supposed to be about infrastructure, by the way. The president has hyped a big spending package on roads, bridges, transit and the like for a while now.

Why we still remember a ‘relatively’ important eclipse nearly a century later

Aug 17, 2017

Millions of onlookers may find themselves pausing in awe of the cosmos on Aug. 21, as a total solar eclipse darkens swaths of North America. (And at PRI, we want your eclipse plans, stories and photos.)

08/17/2017: The tale of the vanishing businessmen

Aug 17, 2017

After CEOs started abandoning ship from President Trump's business advisory groups, he just decided to...dissolve a couple of them. On today's show, we'll look at whether these councils could've actually accomplished anything, and if the CEOs of these big companies have lost an important communication link to the White House. Afterwards, we'll talk about how businesses are processing the uncertainty happening in Washington, D.C., and then discuss the effects of the upcoming solar eclipse on solar power. 

Earlier this month, Google fired an engineer, claiming that he violated the company’s code of conduct and created a hostile work environment when he wrote and shared what is by now an infamous memo alleging that the underrepresentation of women in tech was not due to sexism but because of biological differences. Google, however, is not the only company dealing with a hostile or threatening social environment at work, according to RAND, a nonprofit think tank.

Some new research out today by the Wells Fargo Investment Institute points to some significant differences in investment behavior between generations. For Gen Xers and millennials, the looming specter of the financial crisis is causing them to be more conservative with their portfolios.

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Walmart vs. Amazon: Which will win the retail wars?

Aug 17, 2017

Walmart and Amazon represent two sides of the U.S. economy locked in a bitter feud — brick-and-mortar stores versus online retail. We think of Amazon as the upstart in all of this and Walmart as the stalwart, but there are signs that might be changing.

With the acquisitions Walmart is making, who's the real threat to whom in this retail tussle? 

Josh Brown, the CEO of Ritholtz Wealth Management, joined us to talk about both of the companies' strategies and which company could pull ahead. Below is an edited transcript. 

Two of the world's biggest tech companies, Alibaba and Tencent, are from China. With both having either recently released their quarterly earnings or preparing to, we'll take a look at how they're trying to expand their growth. Afterwards, we'll chat with Rashad Robinson, executive director at Color of Change, about the action that tech groups should take when their users include white supremacist groups.

Should companies turn away white supremacist users?

Aug 17, 2017

Since the events in Charlottesville this past weekend, companies have been making a point to say they will not support white supremacists on their platforms. Airbnb was ahead of most when it kicked off customers who were renting in the area to attend the rally.

08/17/2017: Hate groups run into a payments problem

Aug 17, 2017

Discover Financial Services is ending merchant agreements with what it deems as hate groups, while Visa and Mastercard are taking a similar stand. On today's show, we'll take a look at how big of a step this is toward limiting funding for hate groups. Afterwards, we'll discuss Steve Bannon's interview with Prospect Magazine, in which he said the U.S. is fighting an "economic war" with China. Then we'll talk about the ongoing rivalry between Walmart and Amazon, which represents two sides of the U.S. economy: brick-and-mortar versus online sales.

Justin Ide/Reuters 

Wajahat Ali is an author, attorney and son of Pakistani immigrants. He believes that what happened this week in Charlottesville is a crucial turning point in our country.

And it's that moment when, as an American, you have to take a stance.

Alejandro Alvarez/Reuters

On Saturday, a white nationalist rally erupted into deadly violence as a car plowed into a crowd. On Tuesday, President Donald Trump blamed “both sides” for the violence, in effect equating neo-Nazis and white supremacists with counter-protesters speaking out against racism.

Courtesy of the Partition Museum

India and Pakistan both celebrate an Independence Day. In Pakistan, it’s Aug. 14; in India, a day later. Each national holiday marks the end of British rule, and the creation of two, independent countries.

Adeline Sire

It’s no small feat for a French Muslim woman from a disenfranchised suburb of Paris to make it on stage, let alone as a stand-up comedian.  

Enter Samia Orosemane.

At the start of her Paris one-woman show “Femme de Couleurs” ("Woman of Colors"), the 37-year-old comedian of Tunisian descent walks on stage to a mashup of the themes from "Jaws" and "Star Wars." Veiled in black from head to toe, she paces ominously on the dark stage. And then in a stage whisper, she says, “I’m your mother.” The audience roars with laughter.

Olivia Harris/Reuters

It’s a dance that’s been playing itself out for millennia. On average, once every year and a half, the moon slips directly between the Earth and the sun, punching a hole of darkness into the daytime sky. And whenever possible, there have been people below, looking up.

Experiencing a total solar eclipse is revelatory, especially for people who study them.

"Every eclipse gives you new information,” says Shadia Habbal, an astronomer at the University of Hawaii, originally from Syria.

Three big words in tech news today: original video content. Apple is reportedly making a big push into the business with a $1 billion plan to stream its own shows on its Apple TV and Apple Music platforms. The tech giant joins an increasingly crowded field, competing with the likes of Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, not to mention traditional cable channels like HBO.

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Do viewers want film and TV to directly confront racism?

Aug 16, 2017

The violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend and the president's many responses have brought a whole bunch of things in this society and this economy to the surface. One of the big things is America's issues with race and racism. That can be troubling to think about and sometimes hard to talk about, but it doesn't mean it's not an important conversation that's impacting our culture.

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