Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 1:26 pm
More than 50 years after he came up with a story about Clifford the Big Red Dog, artist and author Norman Bridwell has died. In 2012, Bridwell told NPR he had been shocked when his idea was accepted for publication.
A native of Indiana, Bridwell was 86. He died Friday on the Massachusetts island of Martha's Vineyard, where he had long lived with his wife, Norma.
Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 12:37 pm
Wherever people celebrate Christmas around the world, they feast. It may be as simple as a bowl of porridge, but food rituals to mark the day as separate and special from all other days are practically universal. So often eating the food associated with this holy day helps families pause for a moment to remember who they are, and where they came from.
Originally published on Wed December 24, 2014 6:21 pm
Marvel Comics has provided some of Hollywood's biggest box-office characters ever: The Avengers, the X-Men, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Iron Man, Spider-Man, all starring in gargantuan special effects blockbusters.
And like every superhero, Marvel Comics has an origin story. It begins in New York City, in 1939.
Originally published on Tue December 16, 2014 5:46 pm
Two years ago this day, a 23-year-old woman was brutally gang-raped on a moving bus in New Delhi. Three days later she died from her injuries. The incident pushed millions in the city and all over India to protest the widespread violence against women. The protests led to tougher laws and empowered women to stand up against sexual violence.
And one man was inspired to create a comic book superhero.
Ram Devineni, a New York-based filmmaker, gave life to Priya, a survivor of gang rape who seeks to stop violence against women.
Originally published on Fri December 19, 2014 11:34 am
Candles, latkes, action: It's "Hanukkah Lights," with stories of the season from NPR. Join hosts Susan Stamberg and Murray Horwitz for original work from Andy Borowitz, Theodore Bikel, Anne Burt and Debra Ginsberg, plus a classic from the "Hanukkah Lights" vault by Erika Dreifus.
Whether you like your Hanukkah tales humorous or historical, magical or true-to-life, there's something for you in this brand-new collection of holiday stories.
Listen to the full hour-long special above, or hear individual "Hanukkah Lights" stories below.
Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 8:41 am
Performing live comedy is like "a series of little scientific experiments," says John Cleese. "When you do comedy in front of an audience, they are the ones who tell you whether it's funny or not," he tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies, and each subsequent night on stage is an experiment in making jokes land better than the night before.
Former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman could go free pending his appeal. U.S. District judge Clay Land says he will decide by the end of the week if Seigelman should be released from prison while appealing his 2006 bribery conviction. Land questioned the prosecution and defense on whether the original U.S. attorney's ties to Republican politics tainted the prosecution of the former Democratic governor. The prosecution says Laura Canaryâ€™s participation was minimal. The defense says she championed the case even after recusing herself.
Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 10:29 am
Wander into any bar in Spain, order a drink, and the waiter will very likely hand you free tapas. Very often it's some type of pork â€” jamÃ³n (ham), chorizo (spicy sausage) or panceta (cured bacon). You could say this country is obsessed with cured pork products. People joke that even vegetarians in Spain eat jamÃ³n.
Originally published on Tue December 16, 2014 9:33 am
American painter Richard Estes has made a career out of fooling the eye. His canvases look like photographs â€” but they're not.
"You can't see my paintings in reproduction," the 82-year-old artist says. That's because, in reproduction, the paintings â€” especially his New York cityscapes from the late 1960s â€” look like photos. He's called a photo-realist, or hyper-realist â€” an intense observer of the built environment. But he doesn't paint the view from his apartment window.