The mandolinist Chris Thile, better known for his work with the bluegrass band Nickel Creek, and the novelist Junot Díaz, who won a Pulitzer for his novel The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, are among those awarded 2012 "genius" grants from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
The 23 MacArthur fellows will receive $500,000 over the next five years. They are allowed to do whatever they wish with the money, whether that's continue their work or change fields.
Syrian refugees gather amid olive trees in an area controlled by the rebel Free Syrian Army, in northern Syria near the Turkish border, on Sept. 25. The area has become a way station for Syrian refugees pushed out of neighboring Turkey.
Credit Michel Moutot / AFP/Getty Images
Syrian refugees live under makeshift tents in the grounds of a school in Atme, a village controlled by the Free Syrian Army.
Long before the Syrian uprising, Antakya, Turkey, was a storied place. Once known as Antioch, the city was home to Greeks, some of the earliest Christians, Jews and Armenians. It once was a major stop on the Silk Road.
Most recently, the Turkish city became a hub for the Syrian rebellion. For many months, Turkish authorities tolerated Antakya's status, and even encouraged it. Turkey built refugee camps for tens of thousands of Syrians, and even one for officers who defected from the Syrian army to join the rebel cause.
Supporters of Cambodian journalist Mam Sonando protest outside a Phnom Penh courthouse on Monday, when judges sentenced him to 20 years in jail for leading an alleged secession movement. Critics say the pro-democracy activist's case was politically motivated.
Credit Anthony Kuhn / NPR
Supporters of Mam Sonando (shown here Monday after his conviction) say the pro-democracy activist drew the government's ire by trying to help farmers in eastern Kratie province protect their land. He also runs one of the few private broadcasters in the country that is critical of the government.
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Residents gather their belongings in a paddy field near Pro Ma village in eastern Cambodia's Kratie province. Farmers are being forced to move after their land was granted to a Russian agribusiness.
A court in Cambodia has convicted a prominent journalist and pro-democracy activist on charges of convincing villagers in eastern Cambodia to rise up and declare independence from the country. Civic groups say the case is part of a worrying trend of government efforts to stifle freedom of expression, and attempts to take land away from farmers.
Hundreds of supporters vented their fury outside the courthouse Monday as judges sentenced Mam Sonando to 20 years in jail. Speaking before the verdict, his wife, Dinn Phanara, says the case was politically motivated.