Arts & Culture

Interviews and stories about art, culture, music, books, food / dining and sports.

Lindsay Hatton's novel Monterey Bay bobs somewhat awkwardly in the wake of John Steinbeck's 1945 classic, Cannery Row. In Hatton's tale, a boyishly attired 15-year-old named Margot Fiske works as a helpmeet for her father, an eccentric entrepreneur, in the scenic enclave "that splits the difference between Monterey and Pacific Grove" on California's coast.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Comic Mike Birbiglia's new film, Don't Think Twice, was inspired by an observation his wife made when she came to one of his improv shows.

"She goes, 'It's amazing that everyone is equally talented in this show, and yet this one person is on Saturday Night Live and this one person is a movie star and this one person lives on an air mattress in Queens,' " Birbiglia tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "And I thought: Not only is that true and a great observation, but it's also a movie."

QUIZ: How Much Do You Know About War And Food?

Jul 19, 2016

When we think of tools of warfare, we tend to think of spears, guns and other types of militaristic weaponry. But throughout history, food has often been a critical component of war — inspiring conflict and, in some cases, delivering victory. War and peace? More like war and peas.

We've created a quiz to test your knowledge of just a few examples of how the history of food and war are intermingled. Can you defeat the questions?

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

In the summertime, the air is thick with the low humming of bees delivering pollen from one flower to the next. If you listen closely, a louder buzz may catch your ear.

Maggie O'Farrell writes novels in which you can happily lose yourself. She is fascinated by women who refuse to conform, by the secrets withheld even from our nearest and dearest, and by the unpredictable, serendipitous nature of life, the way a chance encounter can change everything and come to feel inevitable. Her lushly emotional books are filled with strong characters and unexpected convergences and revelations that unfurl across decades and continents.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

If you're a taxpayer, you're in on this system.

We — the U.S. taxpayers — help subsidize farmers by paying part of the premiums on their crop insurance. This helps ensure that farmers don't go belly up, and also protects against food shortages.

Joy Powers

For decades, mah jongg has been the signature game of Jewish grandmothers across the U.S. In the digital age, the game has taken on a new life in the form of mah jongg solitaire.

Hopper Stone / Columbia Pictures

Ghostbusters has held a place in our film-loving hearts since the movie’s release in 1984.  It even holds the title of number 28 on the list of 100 best comedies, according to the American Film Institute. So, naturally public sentiment ranged from the cautiously optimistic to the downright negative leading up the all-female cast remake of the classic that opened last week in Milwaukee.

Film contributor Duane Dudek's initial thoughts were not as negative as some online comments, but he still came out of the theater with oddly mixed feelings.

Susan Bence

One week ago, a crew carefully removed the bronze George Washington statue from its pedestal across from Milwaukee's Central Library on West Wisconsin Ave. Erected in 1885, the 10.5 foot tall monument is being cleaned up and repaired by an Illinois-based expert.

Diane Buck watched the painstaking removal. She made a name for herself in Milwaukee’s civic monument world. Buck co-authored a book about Milwaukee’s outdoor sculpture.

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