Art & Politics Topics

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  • Button-lincoln
    For his latest project, Tony Kushner is writing the screenplay for an upcoming Steven Spielberg movie about Abraham Lincoln. Kushner says an understanding of Lincoln’s presidency carries valuable lessons for political life today. "I think that [Lincoln’s] incredible ability to finesse very, very treacherous political circumstances and continue to move the country forward, I mean, to lead the country forward in the midst of the...
    May 10, 2012 | Story
  • Button-adrienne-rich
    The legendary poet, essayist and feminist Adrienne Rich, who died on Tuesday at the age of 82, was one of the most celebrated poets of the last half-century and a lifelong advocate for women, gay and lesbian rights, peace and racial justice. Rich drew widespread acclaim for her many volumes of poetry and prose, which brought the oppression of women and lesbians into the public spotlight. She was a key figure in the women’s movement and an...
    Mar 30, 2012 | Story
  • Adriennerich
    Pioneering poet, essayist and feminist Adrienne Rich died on Tuesday at the age of 82. She was one of the most distinguished poets living and working in the United States. In 1997, she spoke to Democracy Now! about why she refused the 1997 National Medal for the Arts to protest the growing concentration of power in fewer and fewer hands.
    Mar 29, 2012 | Web Exclusive
  • Randywestonstill
    Our full 78-minute interview with pianist and composer Randy Weston. Includes extended performances of many of Weston’s most famous songs: "Hi-Fly," "Blue Moses," "African Cookbook," "In Memory Of," "The Healers," "African Lady," "Kucheza Blues," and "Blues for Langston Hughes." For the past six decades, Weston has been a pioneering jazz musician, incorporating...
    Feb 24, 2012 | Web Exclusive
  • Splash_image20120222-19550-1bu17zb-0
    In a Black History Month special, today we spend the hour with the legendary pianist and composer Randy Weston. For the past six decades, Weston has been a pioneering jazz musician incorporating the vast rhythmic heritage of Africa. His most famous compositions include "Little Niles," "Blue Moses" and "Hi-Fly," and his 1960 album, "Uhuru Afrika," was a landmark recording that celebrated the independence...
    Feb 20, 2012 | Story
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    On this Valentine’s Day, we turn now to the voices of ordinary Americans talking about love. They are collected in a new book from the award-winning national social history project, StoryCorps. The book, "All There Is: Love Stories from StoryCorps," showcases the most memorable narratives from nearly 40,000 recorded interviews where love is the central theme interweaving two lives together. "I think one of the messages of...
    Feb 14, 2012 | Story
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    The music world continues to pay tribute to pop superstar Whitney Houston following her death on Saturday at the age of 48. She was honored at last night’s Grammy Awards by host LL Cool J and Jennifer Hudson. "She is part of a generation of what I called 'black pop crossover artists,' that would include Eddie Murphy, the late Michael Jackson, and even basketball player Michael Jordan, in that they had unprecedented amount of...
    Feb 13, 2012 | Story
  • Splash_image20120213-29659-1ohh3ym-0
    Whitney Houston is just the latest cultural icon to pass away during this year’s Black History Month. On February 1, "Soul Train" host Don Cornelius was found dead at his home in Los Angeles, in what appeared to be a suicide. Cornelius brought black music and culture into America’s living rooms through his dance show, "Soul Train," one of the longest-running syndicated shows in television history, and played a critical...
    Feb 13, 2012 | Story
  • Splash_image20120213-31312-okyyy1-0
    Dozens of musicians demonstrated outside the Grammy Awards on Sunday protesting the Recording Academy’s decision to eliminate dozens of ethnic music award categories, including Hawaiian, Haitian, Cajun, Latin jazz, contemporary blues and regional Mexican. Some protesters see racial bias in the revisions, others see them as harmful to low-budget indie labels. Last August, four Latin jazz artists filed a lawsuit with the New York Supreme Court...
    Feb 13, 2012 | Story
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    Protesters visited a half-dozen Apple stores around the world to deliver petitions calling for reforms in the working conditions at factories run by Apple’s suppliers in China. The protests come on the heels of recent revelations of harsh conditions and onerous work environments at Apple’s controversial Chinese supplier Foxconn, where more than a dozen employees have committed suicide. We’re joined by New York Times reporter...
    Feb 10, 2012 | Story