All Things Considered

Weekday afternoons from 4-6 and 6:30-7. Weekend afternoons from 4-5.

This NPR newsmagazine offers a balanced perspective on the events of the day.

The Sunni-led Persian Gulf kingdom of Bahrain is in the process of replacing 18 Shiite members of parliament who walked out of the 40-seat legislature to protest the crushing of street protests in March. An opposition boycott ensured dismal turnout in last Saturday's special election, and a run-off for nine seats is set for Oct. 1. The government insists it can move forward on its own with reforms that will restore Bahrain's reputation as a secure and moderate banking hub.

Loughner Appears In Court

Sep 28, 2011



In Tucson, Arizona, a federal judge has sent Jared Lee Loughner back to a prison hospital for more treatment. Loughner is the 23-year-old charged with the January shooting rampage in Tucson that killed six and left 13 wounded, among them Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Loughner was in court today for a hearing to assess his competency to stand trial. A psychologist told the judge that Loughner's condition has improved with antipsychotic medication and that he could be made competent with more treatment.

DVD Picks: 'Ben-Hur'

Sep 27, 2011

Time for our movie critic Bob Mondello's suggestions for home-viewing. Today he's recommending a wide-screen 1950s epic that was specifically designed to draw people away from their TV sets: Ben-Hur.

Everything about Ben-Hur was big. Reeeeally big. The sound was stereophonic (which was new back then), the screen wider than all outdoors, and that chariot race — flat-out enormous.

Dan Zanes Plants A 'Little Nut Tree'

Sep 27, 2011

When Dan Zanes became a father 16 years ago, he took seriously the decision of which song to play to his newborn daughter first. He chose the 1968 Jamaican hit "Little Nut Tree." Now, after more than a decade of recording music for families, the godfather of the kids' music renaissance has released a new album called Little Nut Tree on his own label.

Imagine you're trekking through the concrete jungle of just about any Southeast Asian city. The first thing you notice is the smorgasbord of smells, some enticing, others downright rank. Amid the urban odor-rama, one sweet herbal fragrance stands out. It's lemongrass. And it's just about everywhere.

Saudi Women Get The Vote

Sep 26, 2011



Over the weekend, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia announced that women will get the right to vote and to run in municipal elections, but not until 2015. And King Abdullah said women will be appointed to the Shura Council, which advises the monarchy. This in a country where women still don't have the right to drive.



Now that fall is officially here, many of us are trying to cool off from a long hot summer. But commentator Andrei Codrescu is just getting warmed up.

ANDREI CODRESCU: It's been a year like a ride in hell's own at Disney World. From weather the politics, the world seems bent out of shape. But this may be the result of extensive coverage, rather than an unusual number of disasters.

I watched an episode of "The Hour," set in the days of the Cold War and remembered just how different things used to be.

New York's New Shipping Plan Sparks Feud

Sep 26, 2011

New York state is poised to implement new rules that could have a major impact on the global shipping industry. Invasive species sometimes move from place to place in "ballast water" — that's the water ships suck in and discharge to level their loads. Officials in New York want all that ballast water treated to kill any "living pollution" before it reaches their harbors. But the treatment technology is expensive and untested. Because the state serves as a gateway to the Great Lakes and ports in New Jersey, other states and countries are disputing the new rules.

I first came across Sultana's Dream while doing research for a novel set in Bangladesh. I had traveled to Dhaka, the capital city, and stumbled on the Liberation War museum, where my visit coincided with an exhibition on the story.

I became fascinated by the life of its author, Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain, when I learned that, like me, she had been raised by a progressive Muslim family and actively encouraged to seek an education.

When I was a kid, I assumed that in the future things would get better and better until we were all driving flying cars and playing badminton with space aliens on top of 500-story buildings. Frankly, I kind of counted on this happening. But now I don't assume that we'll just keep going up anymore.