Michel Martin

As U.S. poet laureate Joy Harjo was working on the Norton Anthology of Native Nations Poetry, she and the other editors decided they needed to hear the whole collection.

"At one point in the editing, we decided to read the whole manuscript aloud," Harjo says. "That's how I revise, so that's what we did — is we took it into our mouths and took it to our bodies."

The result of that work is When the Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through -- an anthology of poetry from more than 160 poets, representing close to 100 indigenous nations.

Rina Sawayama's self-titled debut album is a complex work of pop music, often calling to mind early 2000s R&B, nu-metal, and shuffling between genres in the same song. In the same way she flips through sounds, Sawayama also sings about a lot of complicated topics: her parents' messy divorce, her identity as Japanese British person and her burgeoning understanding of systemic racism, which she says she experienced while studying psychology, sociology and politics at Cambridge University.

Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams says the state's Tuesday primary performance was "an unmitigated disaster," pinning the blame on Georgia's Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

Polling locations all around Georgia experienced delays and long lines Tuesday due to a mix of logistical problems, technical issues with the state's new voting machines and COVID-19-related restrictions resulting in fewer available voting sites.

The Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017 is one of the flashpoints of the Trump era.

The white-supremacist gathering devolved into violence with anti-racist demonstrators. One woman, Heather Heyer, was killed and others were injured. The event has taken on a deep symbolic meaning even beyond those terrible facts. Former Vice President Joe Biden began his run for the Democratic presidential nomination by invoking Charlottesville, and saying his campaign was a response, in part, to President Trump's divisive rhetoric.

Protests have erupted across the nation in response to the death of George Floyd, and some of the demonstrations have turned violent, leading political leaders and activists to debate over who is responsible.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Designer Betsey Johnson has been pushing fashion boundaries for decades. She's known for her very personal, very whimsical style, for bright colors, animal prints – and doing cartwheels into a splits at the end of her fashion shows.

And, of course, there's pink. Lots of pink.

In her new self-titled memoir, Betsey, we learn more about the woman behind the brand. Yes, there's whimsy and fun, but she's also upfront about the less than fun times in her life, from difficult romantic relationships to health challenges to business failures.

Queen Sono is both a classic spy thriller and a ground-breaking entertainment endeavor. The drama is Netflix's first commissioned script-to-screen series from Africa, and the first such show to get major distribution in the U.S.

Filmed across the continent with a diverse cast featuring multiple languages, the show stars Pearl Thusi as a South African secret agent with a complicated past.

Stephen Bruner, better known as Thundercat, is one of the music industry's most eclectic and prolific collaborators. Over the past five years, the virtuosic bass player has worked with everyone from Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar to Michael McDonald. His latest album, It Is What It Is, was released on Friday and it features the same expansive range of genres and styles.

Last month, Habibi released Anywhere But Here, the band's first full-length album since its self-titled debut in 2014. Just like that first record and the EPs and singles over the past six years, the new album is full of Habibi's signature mix of psychedelic rock and Iranian music.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

For many Americans, the first moon landing remains the most memorable moment in the history of manned space travel.

It was a high-water mark in the space race, but as the United States and Soviet Union were rushing to prove their dominance, a lesser known chapter in that battle was taking place: America's effort to send a black man into space.

Black in Space: Breaking the Color Barrier, a new documentary on the Smithsonian Channel, brings light to the groundbreaking moment that almost came to be during the heights of the civil rights movement.

Quentin Baxter and Clay Ross first met as students at the College of Charleston in the 1990s, where they played together in a jazz band. Decades later, they reunited and last month won a Grammy together as members of Ranky Tanky, a band that specializes in blending contemporary American gospel and R&B with Gullah traditional music.

President Trump celebrated his acquittal this week by lashing out at political rivals and firing two officials who testified before impeachment investigators about his involvement in the Ukraine scandal.

In 2017, the all-woman collective Les Amazones d'Afrique introduced themselves to the world with their debut album, Republique Amazone. The songs showcased the group's two signatures: intoxicating, danceable rhythms and a message calling out violence and other forms of mistreatment of women all over the globe.

Their second album, called Amazones Power was released Friday, and it builds on many of those same themes. The group has grown since last time, with the core of women with roots in West Africa now supplemented by an international mix of men and women.

Let's talk about fast food — and I bet you have a jingle in your head right now, because according to a new book, on any given day in America, an estimated one third of all American adults is eating something at a fast food restaurant.

With an election year upon us, we are reminded that we have been through this before.

The United States in the mid-1840s, for example, was a country in the middle of a major transformation, pushing its boundaries to extend from coast to coast to claim what many in that era asserted was America's Manifest Destiny.

As swaths of red and green trim Chicago neighborhoods this holiday season, an unexpected pop of blue is lighting up the Wrigleyville neighborhood. And it's got nothing to do with the Cubs.

It's actually the 10,000-plus lights springing from 8 Crazy Nights — what appears to be the city's first Hanukkah-themed pop-up bar.

Kyle Bagley and Sam Stone, co-owners of the Graystone Tavern, decided to dress up the sports bar for the month of December. Neither owner is Jewish, but Bagley says they saw a void in the crowded pop-up scene. On top of that, they wanted to stand out.

Tina: The Tina Turner Musical tells the rags-to-riches — to rags again, then to riches again — saga of Tina Turner's life.

It starts in Nutbush, Tenn., where the young Anna Mae Bullock was born. Then it documents her rise to stardom with Ike Turner — who she eventually married and then left after years of abuse — and then her improbable (but somehow entirely fitting) second rise to fame as a solo performer, in her mid-40s no less.

When Carrie Goldberg broke up with her boyfriend of a few months, frightening things started happening. He sent her hundreds of threatening messages. He contacted her friends, family and even work colleagues on Facebook to spread vicious lies about her — and that wasn't all. One night she opened her laptop to find email after email containing intimate pictures of her, including a graphic video filmed without her consent. Goldberg, a lawyer, went to the police and was told there was nothing that could be done.

Between the election of President Trump and Britain's ongoing debate over Brexit, the billionaire philanthropist George Soros recognizes that populism is on the rise and that his brand of liberal democracy is faltering.

"When I got involved in what I call political philanthropy some 40 years ago, the open society idea was on the ascendant — closed societies were opening up," Soros said in an interview with NPR's All Things Considered. "And now, open societies are on the defensive and dictatorships are on the rise."

Yet he remains optimistic.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York officially endorsed presidential candidate Bernie Sanders at a rally in Queens, N.Y., on Saturday.

Addressing an estimated crowd of more than 25,000 supporters, Ocasio-Cortez said she was proud to join the Vermont senator in bringing "a working-class revolution to the ballot box of the United States of America."

Don't see the video? Click here.

Beto O'Rourke wants to ban and buy back assault-style weapons. Exactly how he would persuade others to get on board is unclear, and two undecided Texas voters recently pressed him on how he would build consensus for his plan and whether it would hold up in conservative courts.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Detroit rapper Danny Brown made a name for himself over the past decade as a party boy rapping about drinking and drugs in his signature high-pitched voice.

But now he's older, approaching 40, Brown's re-branding of sorts, branching out to other forms of entertainment.

Earlier this year his comedy talk show Danny's House premiered on Viceland. He's just come out with his fifth studio album, uknowhatimsayin¿

With the fraught negotiations over Brexit continuing to embroil British politics, the nation's former prime minister, David Cameron, says his "greatest regret" is that those who advocated to stay in the EU lost the vote — which ultimately divided the country, paralyzed the government and left Britain increasingly at risk of leaving the European Union without any deal.

Since 2015, under the threat of the Taliban, Afghan filmmakers Hassan Fazili and Fatima Hussaini, along with their two young daughters, have been on the run for their lives.

The family fled Afghanistan after the extremist group had called for Fazili's death over a film he'd made about one of its commanders.

Even as the refugee family navigates a still-incomplete journey — of death threats, discrimination and paralyzing immigration systems — Fazili and Hussaini turn their cameras on themselves and their daughters.

For better and worse, Paul Cauthen has spent his life breaking the rules.

Parting from his conservative Christian upbringing in East Texas, the "Cocaine Country Dancing" singer served a brief stint in jail for marijuana possession.

The death of his grandfather, who first introduced him to the guitar, followed by his parents' divorce, had set Cauthen on a rocky path to early adulthood.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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