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3:58am

Sun January 15, 2012
Author Interviews

'In Our Prime'? What It Means To Be Middle-Aged

iStockphoto.com

Not so long ago, being middle-aged was associated with being over the hill. But not anymore — nowadays, 60 is the new 40. In her new book, In Our Prime, Patricia Cohen, a culture reporter for The New York Times (who isn't shy about telling us she's 51), explores the evolution of that oft-maligned, middle period of life.

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3:56am

Sun January 15, 2012
Arts & Life

Speedy Toy Cars Blur The Boundaries Of Sculpture

Chris Burden's sculpture Metropolis II requires a traffic controller, who watches for pileups on the highways.
Courtesy The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Chris Burden's early career was all about the intersection of art and danger. The 1970s saw him lying crucified with nails on the roof of a Volkswagen Bug. In another piece, he was shot through the arm by an assistant — literally.

"It was a way to make art without making an object," he says.

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10:01pm

Sat January 14, 2012
Sunday Puzzle

Second To Last

NPR Graphic

On-Air Challenge: Think of a word that can follow a given word to complete a familiar two-word phrase or name. The first two letters of your word must be the second and last letters, respectively, of the given word. For example, if given "fallen," the answer would be "angel."

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3:30pm

Sat January 14, 2012
The Two-Way

Assassination Opens New Rifts Between Iran And The West

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 4:29 pm

People gather around a car as it is removed by a mobile crane in Tehran, Iran. The car was being driven by Iranian nuclear scientist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan when it was targeted by a bomb Wednesday. Roshan was killed in the blast.
Meghdad Madadi AP

Earlier this week, 32-year-old nuclear scientist Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan was killed by a bomb blast on his way to work in Tehran, Iran.

The attack, carried out with a magnetic bomb placed on Roshan's car by a man on a motorcycle, was like something out of a spy novel. In Iran, however, it's very much a reality. Assassins have targeted five Iranian nuclear scientists in the past two years; four of the attacks have succeeded.

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2:49pm

Sat January 14, 2012
Author Interviews

Alan Bennett Defies Expectations With 'Smut'

Originally published on Sat January 14, 2012 5:14 pm

Alan Bennett, author of The History Boys and The Madness of King George, among countless other books, plays and memoirs, is a grand old man of British letters.

"I'm getting on now, and I'm thought of in England as being rather cozy and genteel — certainly in the stories that I write," he tells weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz.

So Bennett decided to give his readers a little rattle with a new book of two short stories called Smut.

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