Alix Spiegel

NPR correspondent Alix Spiegel works on the Science desk and covers psychology.

Arriving at NPR in 2003, much of Spiegel's reporting has been on emotion mental health. She has reported on everything from the psychological impact of killing another person, to the emotional devastation of Katrina, to psycho-therapeutic approaches to transgender children.

Over the course of her career in public radio, Spiegel has won awards including the George Foster Peabody Award, Livingston Award, and Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award. Spiegel's 2007 documentary revealing mental health issues and crime plaguing a Southern Mississippi FEMA trailer park housing Katrina victims was recognized with Scripps Howard National Journalism Award and the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. Her radio documentary 81 Words, about the removal of homosexuality from psychiatry's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, is being turned into a film by HBO.

Originally from Baltimore, Maryland, Spiegel graduated from Oberlin College. She began her career in radio in 1995 as one of the founding producers of the public radio show This American Life. Spiegel left the show in 1999 to become a full time reporter. She has also written for The New Yorker magazine and The New York Times.

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Research News
3:00 pm
Fri November 25, 2011

Why We Give, Not Why You Think

Originally published on Fri November 25, 2011 5:16 pm

Transcript

GUY RAZ, HOST:

This time of year, pleas for donations are as plentiful as eggnog and door-buster sales. Americans give around $300 billion a year to charity. And as NPR's Alix Spiegel reports, psychologists have started to look more closely at when and why we're motivated to give.

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Science
4:37 am
Tue September 27, 2011

How Psychology Solved A WWII Shipwreck Mystery

A gun turret on the sunken Australian warship HMAS Sydney. All 645 people aboard the Sydney died.
AP

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 12:52 pm

In November 1941, two ships crossed paths off the coast of Australia. One was the German raider HSK Kormoran. The other: an Australian warship called the HMAS Sydney. Guns were fired, the ships were damaged, and both sank to the bottom of the ocean.

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Your Health
12:01 am
Mon September 12, 2011

For The Dying, A Chance To Rewrite Life

Kate Frego pins the turban of her mother, Aida Essenburg. Before Essenburg died in July of this year, she sat down with a dignity therapist to record the history of her life in what became a 50-page document.
Courtesy of Kate Frego

Originally published on Mon September 12, 2011 1:47 pm

For several decades, psychiatrists who work with the dying have been trying to come up with new psychotherapies that can help people cope with the reality of their death. One of these therapies asks the dying to tell the story of their life.

This end-of-life treatment, called dignity therapy, was created by a man named Harvey Chochinov. When Chochinov was a young psychiatrist working with the dying, he had a powerful experience with one of the patients he was trying to counsel — a man with an inoperable brain tumor.

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Environment
12:01 am
Tue August 9, 2011

Why Cleaned Wastewater Stays Dirty In Our Minds

Brent Haddad studies water in a place where water is often in short supply: California.

Haddad is a professor of environmental studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. About 14 years ago, he became very interested in the issue of water reuse.

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Law
4:24 pm
Wed July 6, 2011

To Prevent False IDs, Police Lineups Get Revamped

Using revamped photo lineup procedures, a Dallas police officer shows a victim of a robbery a single photo of a suspect in an interview room at police headquarters in 2009. Dallas officially adopted lineup reforms two years ago.
LM Otero AP

In a small room at police headquarters in Dallas, Texas, a police officer and the eyewitness to a minor crime recently sat down together to consider six photographs in a photo lineup.

Eyewitness identifications like this happen every day in America, and on the surface, it is a straight-forward transaction. The witness looks at the pictures. The witness picks a person from the photos. Or the witness doesn't.

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