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The Leonard Lopate Show

Ivan Klima's Crazy Century

Monday, November 11, 2013

Acclaimed Czech writer Ivan Klima reflects back on his life and on decades of war, totalitarianism, censorship, and the fight for democracy. Klíma’s memoir My Crazy Century begins in the 1930s on the outskirts of Prague. During WWII, most of his family survived the Terezín concentration camp, but when they returned home, their city was falling into the grip of Communism.

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The Takeaway

Putting Together the Puzzle Pieces of JFK's Legacy

Monday, November 11, 2013

On November 22, the nation will pause to reflect on the 50 years since the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. As historian Robert Caro says in "American Experience: JFK," a new documentary by Takeaway partner WGBH, "We will never know whether he would have been a great president—I'd bet on him, but we didn't have that chance." In the wake of Kennedy's untimely death, we are left with puzzle pieces that do not make a complete picture of a presidency.

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Doolittle Raiders Offer Final Toast To 71-Year-Old Mission

Monday, November 11, 2013

On April 18, 1942, following the attack on Pearl Harbor, 80 men took off from an aircraft carrier on a secret mission to bomb Japan. Led by Lt. Col. James "Jimmy" Doolittle, the men became known as the Doolittle Tokyo Raiders. On Saturday, three of the four remaining Raiders met for what is probably the last time.

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In 1913, A New York Armory Filled With Art Stunned The Nation

Monday, November 11, 2013

The 1,400-work exhibition gave many Americans their first look at what avant-garde artists in Europe were up to. It was the biggest art show New York had ever seen and challenged ideas about artistic "progress."

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Empress Dowager Cixi of China

Monday, November 11, 2013

Empress Dowager Cixi (1835–1908) is the most important woman in Chinese history. Jung Chang explains how she brought a medieval empire into the modern age. In her biography Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China, Chang looks at how Cixi achieved modern industries, railways, electricity, the telegraph and an army and navy with up-to-date weaponry. She also put an end to foot-binding and inaugurated women’s liberation.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Bush and Cheney; Modernizing China; Sports Talk; Ivan Klima's Memoir

Monday, November 11, 2013

We’ll start off the show on this Veteran’s Day with New York Times Chief White House Correspondent Peter Baker on the complex relationship between President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney. Then, we’ll learn about the 19th-century Empress Dowager Cixi, who brought China into the modern age. Mike Pesca and Josh Levin, two of the hosts of Slate’s “Hang Up and Listen” podcast, join us for some Monday afternoon quarterbacking. Celebrated Czech writer Ivan Klima talks about being a witness to war, totalitarianism, censorship and the fight for democracy, and the role he played in his country’s history.

Nazi Hunter Dedicates Career To Pursuing Justice

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Eli Rosenbaum has spent much of his career at the Department of Justice, identifying and deporting Nazi war criminals. He tells NPR's Rachel Martin about the first time he became aware of the Nazis, the sense of duty he feels to pursue justice for the victims, and the surreal experience of questioning suspects about atrocities committed decades ago.

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Inconsistencies Haunt Official Record Of JFK's Death

Sunday, November 10, 2013

In the half century since President John F. Kennedy's assassination, conspiracy theories have persisted.

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Inconsistencies Haunt Official Record Of Kennedy's Death

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Some three decades after the Warren Commission's report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, a board was established that declassified thousands of documents. Congress hoped it would clear up lingering conspiracy theories, but it didn't.

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75 Years Ago, Kristallnacht Presaged The Holocaust

Saturday, November 09, 2013

It was once impossible to imagine Germany without Jews. You only have to look at the Yiddish language to have a sense how richly the Jewish experience was integrated in the cultural life of Germany. That ended in the most vicious and heinous manner, 75 years ago Saturday, in what became known as Kristallnacht — "The Night of Broken Glass." The broken glass was from Jewish homes and buildings, and came to symbolize shattered Jewish lives. Some also consider it the start of the Holocaust. Back in 1988, NPR reporter Ketzel Levine pulled together some of the sounds of that period. This is an excerpt from that story.

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The Takeaway

One Woman's Quest to Recover Her Family's Artwork Stolen by the Nazis

Friday, November 08, 2013

A close friend of Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, art dealer Paul Rosenberg once dominated Paris's art scene. Nazi forces confiscated much of Rosenberg's collection, at least 400 artworks worth millions of dollars. Marianne Rosenberg, Paul's granddaughter and Alexandre's son, continues her family's quest to recover their stolen art. This week, Marianne confirmed that one of her family's Matisse paintings was in the trove of Nazi-confiscated art recently discovered in Munich. 

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Striking Harmonies With The Jubilee Singers' Past And Present

Thursday, November 07, 2013

The Fisk Jubilee Singers are known for their near-perfect voices and performances of African-American spiritual songs. Now the choir's musical director is on the road, mentoring to young groups across the South. He's also hoping to preserve the songs too.

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School Named For Former KKK Leader Reconsiders Its Legacy

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Nathan Bedford Forrest High School in Jacksonville, Fla., was named decades ago for a Confederate hero — who was also the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. More than 160,000 people have signed a petition urging a name change, but the current name has also drawn passionate support.

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How Kennedy's Assassination Changed The Secret Service

Thursday, November 07, 2013

The Secret Service made some immediate changes after the president's death 50 years ago this month: Open limousines were out. And it began taking a more aggressive approach to its advance work. Over the years, the service has established counter-sniper units, assault teams and surveillance units.

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Who Owns The Archives Of A Vanishing Iraqi Jewish World?

Thursday, November 07, 2013

In 2003, U.S. forces discovered a trove of Jewish documents in a flooded Baghdad basement. They tell the tale of a once-thriving Jewish community. The painstakingly restored documents will be exhibited in the U.S. before they are returned to Iraq. But some Jewish groups are trying to prevent that.

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The Takeaway

For a Name to Change, Mindset Must Come First

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Today The Takeaway looked at the controversy surrounding the name of a school in Florida. But that’s just one example in the nation—there are also race-based names attached to creeks, street signs and sports teams. Joining The Takeaway to weigh in on the psychological effects of a name and whether any historical value is lost in the changing of a name is Dr. Leah Wright, professor of history and African American studies at Wesleyan.

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The Takeaway

POLL: Should Institutions with Offensive Names be Changed?

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Are we too easily offended? Would a name change matter? Here you'll find a poll that includes some institutions that have changed their names, and some that are currently facing challenges. Have your voice heard by taking the short survey below. You can also leave a comment below, on our Facebook page or send us a tweet if you'd like to weigh in further. You can also give us a ring at 1-877-869-8253 add your take.

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The Takeaway

160,000 Petition to Change Name of Florida High School Named for KKK Leader

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Jacksonville, Florida's Nathan B. Forrest High School was named for a Confederate general and the first “Grand Wizard” of the Ku Klux Klan. More than 116,000 people have signed a petition to rename the school. But some residents and alumni are fighting back against a name change. Joining us to explain what's next in Jacksonville is Karen Feagins, director of programming and news for WJCT.

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After 100 Years, Search Goes On For 2 Sunken Ships

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Thursday marks the 100th anniversary of a storm that ravaged the Great Lakes. Referred to as the "White Hurricane," the storm raged for four days — destroying 19 ships and killing 250 sailors. Eight of the wrecks were on Michigan's Lake Huron. Two ships have never been found, but the search continues.

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Camus' Stance On Algeria Still Stokes Debate In France

Thursday, November 07, 2013

A hundred years after his birth, French writer Albert Camus is perhaps best known for novels like The Stranger and his philosophy of absurdism. But it's his views on Algeria's fight for independence that continues\ to get scrutiny.

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