Middle East
3:44 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

Just Another Day In Damascus

A man walks near buildings damaged after shelling by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar Assad, at Harasta, a suburb of Damascus, on Nov. 19.
Abed Al-Kareem Muhammad Shaam News Network/HOReuters /Landov

Editor's Note: Throughout the Syrian uprising, the government has allowed few foreign journalists and other outsiders into the country, and there has been limited information about life in many parts of the country. In this essay, a Syrian citizen describes life in the capital, Damascus. For security reasons, NPR is not identifying the author.

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World
2:32 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

Russia, U.S. Seek To Resolve Friction On Adoptions

Artyom Savelyev, now 9, was sent back to Russia on a plane by his adoptive U.S. mother in 2010. The case stirred anger in Russia.
Misha Japaridze AP

Originally published on Fri November 23, 2012 7:29 pm

Americans have been adopting Russian children in sizable numbers for two decades, and most of the unions have worked out well. But it remains a sensitive topic in Russia, where officials periodically point to high-profile cases of abuse or other problems.

Now, the two countries are putting the finishing touches on a new agreement governing these adoptions. It will make the process costlier and more time-consuming, but it's designed to address a host of concerns.

Some Russian officials still seem to bristle at the very thought of foreigners adopting Russian children.

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World Cafe
2:03 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

Ben Folds Five On World Cafe

(From left) Robert Sledge, Ben Folds and Darren Jessee of Ben Folds Five.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 1:50 pm

Three albums into a thriving career, Ben Folds Five abruptly announced it was over in 2000. Luckily for fans, Folds got the band back together 11 years later and even released a new album, The Sound of the Life of the Mind, this September.

The album is classic Ben Folds Five — at times irreverent, cerebral, quirky, wistful and playful. The Sound of the Life of the Mind peaked at No. 10 on the Billboard 200 and the video for the first single, "Do It Anyway," features Anna Kendrick, Rob Corddry and the cast of Fraggle Rock.

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Movies
1:54 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

What Happened To 'Baby Jane'? She's Turning 50

Bette Davis in the role of Jane Hudson in What Ever Happened To Baby Jane? The classic horror film, which has just turned 50, is being released on Blu-ray
AP

Originally published on Fri November 23, 2012 2:33 pm

Baby Jane Hudson is now 50 years old — or at least the strange and brilliant movie in which she's the main character is, just released as a beautifully remastered Blu-ray. Robert Aldrich's grotesque gothic tragedy is a cross between Gypsy, with its antithetical show-biz kid sisters, and Sunset Boulevard, with its decayed Hollywood glamour.

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Music
12:49 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

Dayton-Based Rad Girlfriend Records Prepares for National, International Releases in 2013

Rad Girlfriend records began as a way to release records by Josh Goldman's bands and their friends.  The Dayton-based indie label has since grown to release albums and EPs from bands around the country and will soon move into releasing music by international artists.  Goldman and several of the musicians involved with Rad Girlfriend visited the WYSO studio to talk about the label's birth and plans for 2013. 

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Commentary
12:35 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

What's Great in Dayton: November 23 - 29, 2012

Dayton Holiday Festival, 2009
Credit Adam Alonzo

The Dayton Holiday Festival Kickoff Events begin at the Courthouse Square in Downtown Dayton; 4-9 p.m. today. The festival kicks off with the Grande Illumination and the Dayton Children's Parade Spectacular in Lights. A full evening of fun holiday entertainment and activities including live Main Stage entertainment, the Gingerbread Homes for the Holidays contest, the Street Fair on Third, horse-drawn wagon rides and much more.

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Movie Reviews
12:28 pm
Fri November 23, 2012

A Boy, A Boat, A Tiger: Reflecting On 'Life Of Pi'

Pi Patel (Suraj Sharma) begins a journey of personal growth and spiritual discovery after being lost at sea.
20th Century Fox

Originally published on Fri November 23, 2012 1:54 pm

Director Ang Lee has a surprising affinity for the Indian hero of Life of Pi — that's his name, Pi, and he's seen at several ages but principally as a 17-year-old boy adrift on a lifeboat in the South Pacific. He's the lone survivor of a shipwreck that killed the crew, his family and a variety of zoo animals his father was transporting to North America for sale.

Actually, Pi is the lone human survivor. He shares his boat and its dwindling food supplies with a man-eating Bengal tiger.

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World
11:13 am
Fri November 23, 2012

Italian Women Call For Action Against 'Femicide'

Demonstrators rally to protest violence against women in a march in Milan, Italy, in November 2009. This year, more than 100 women in Italy have been killed by their male partners.
Antonio Calanni AP

Originally published on Fri November 23, 2012 10:02 pm

Already this year, 105 women in Italy have been killed by husbands or boyfriends –- present or former.

Vanessa Scialfa, 29, was killed by her partner in Sicily. Alessia Francesca Simonetta, 25, was pregnant when she was stabbed to death by her boyfriend in Milan. Carmella Petrucci, 17, was stabbed in the throat as she tried to defend her sister from her ex-boyfriend.

Police inspector Francesca Monaldi, who heads the gender crime unit in Rome, says the names and the cities change, but the stories are very similar.

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The Two-Way
10:33 am
Fri November 23, 2012

Egyptians Take To The Streets After President Expands Powers

Egyptian opponents and supporters of President Mohammed Morsi clashed here in Alexandria and in other cities on Friday. The protests broke out a day after Morsi gave himself sweeping new powers.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 23, 2012 12:31 pm

Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was showered with international praise on Wednesday as he brokered a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

On Friday, he was the target of angry protesters in Cairo's Tahrir Square as they denounced Morsi's decision to grant himself sweeping new powers a day earlier.

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The Two-Way
10:06 am
Fri November 23, 2012

Why 'Black Friday' Has Dark Roots

People waited in line to make purchases at a Macy's department store in New York during last year's "Black Friday" shopping weekend.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 23, 2012 1:43 pm

Black Friday may not yet be a bigger holiday than Thanksgiving, but it certainly has a bigger marketing budget. Retailers may have needed it to overcome the term's long and negative history.

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