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On Being with Krista Tippett is a public radio project delving into the human side of news stories + issues. Curated + edited by senior editor Trent Gilliss.

We publish guest contributions. We edit long; we scrapbook. We do big ideas + deep meaning. We answer questions.

We've even won a couple of Webbys + a Peabody Award.

Good call, timemagazine:

TIME’s 2011 Person of the Year is The Protester

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

Good call, timemagazine:

TIME’s 2011 Person of the Year is The Protester

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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Truth has to be given in riddles. People can’t take truth if it comes charging at them like a bull. The bull is always killed. You have to give people the truth in a riddle, hide it so they go looking for it and find it piece by piece; that way they learn to live with it.
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Chaim Potok, from The Gift of Asher Lev

Thanks for reminding me of this mind-enlivening piece of art.

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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"Vocal Fry" as a Social Link?

by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

It was this BIG!Photo by Jeffrey Pott/Flickr, cc by-nc-nd 2.0

Wouldn’t you know it. Britney Spears impact on our social culture extends beyond the worlds of music and fashion — and into the language of speech. A recent study in the Journal of Voice shows that more than two-thirds of Standard American-English speakers aged 18-25 are now incorporating what once used to be thought of as a speech impediment into their everyday speech patterns. And young, female adults living in the U.S. are more apt to use this guttural vibration in their normal speech than men.

Don’t know what it sounds like? Listen to the audio sample above. Or, pop in one of Spears more recent hits, and listen to how she sings her lower notes and how it kind of sounds like a series of dry, creaky staccato tones. Yep, that’s it.

But why? The co-author of the Long Island University study and a speech scientist, Nassima Abdelli-Beruh, speculates in ScienceNow, “Young students tend to use it when they get together. Maybe this is a social link between members of a group.”

The I know I’ll be listening to my young nieces and nephews’ speech patterns more acutely over the holiday break!

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French Christians Protest Provocative Play about Jesus, Religion, and Consumer Culture
by Trent Gilliss, senior editor
A woman holds a banner reading “Touche pas à Dieu!" ("Don’t touch God!") during a demonstration in Paris, France this past Sunday. The Institut Civitas called on Christians to gather and denounce “Christianophobia” and Argentine-born author Rodrigo Garcia’s play Golgota Picnic, which the fundamentalist Christian group judges as “blasphemous.” Thousands of Catholics took part in the demonstration and stopped at the Théâtre de Rond-Point on the Champs Elysees which is running the play, which contains a stage littered with hamburger buns and scenes of Jesus’ crucifixion with biblical readings.
Golgota Picnic is a hard-hitting critique of consumer culture and religion in which, Garcia said to the BBC, “depicts the life of Christ through shocking images of contemporary consumer society.”
Photo by Fred Dufour/AFP/Getty Images.

French Christians Protest Provocative Play about Jesus, Religion, and Consumer Culture

by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

A woman holds a banner reading “Touche pas à Dieu!" ("Don’t touch God!") during a demonstration in Paris, France this past Sunday. The Institut Civitas called on Christians to gather and denounce “Christianophobia” and Argentine-born author Rodrigo Garcia’s play Golgota Picnic, which the fundamentalist Christian group judges as “blasphemous.” Thousands of Catholics took part in the demonstration and stopped at the Théâtre de Rond-Point on the Champs Elysees which is running the play, which contains a stage littered with hamburger buns and scenes of Jesus’ crucifixion with biblical readings.

Golgota Picnic is a hard-hitting critique of consumer culture and religion in which, Garcia said to the BBC, “depicts the life of Christ through shocking images of contemporary consumer society.”

Photo by Fred Dufour/AFP/Getty Images.

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It seems like the viability-of-life-on-Mars story resurfaces every few years with renewed enthusiasm. And how can it not be stimulating to think about foreign biological possibilities existing in other pockets of the universe?
From Discovery News:

Life Possible On ‘Large Regions’ of Mars
With higher pressures and warmer temperatures beneath the Martian surface, Earth-like microorganisms could thrive.
read more

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

It seems like the viability-of-life-on-Mars story resurfaces every few years with renewed enthusiasm. And how can it not be stimulating to think about foreign biological possibilities existing in other pockets of the universe?

From Discovery News:

Life Possible On ‘Large Regions’ of Mars

With higher pressures and warmer temperatures beneath the Martian surface, Earth-like microorganisms could thrive.

read more

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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Old St. Nick is an acquired taste for some methinks. So much for the Christmas spirit.
From the National Post:

Odd Christmas photo of the dayDavid Warren, who has been playing Santa for the past ten years, holds the clearly freaked-out seven-month-old Olivia Ruch at Santa’s Grotto in Selfridges department store in London, Dec 7, 2011. (Suzanne Plunkett/Reuters)

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

Old St. Nick is an acquired taste for some methinks. So much for the Christmas spirit.

From the National Post:

Odd Christmas photo of the day
David Warren, who has been playing Santa for the past ten years, holds the clearly freaked-out seven-month-old Olivia Ruch at Santa’s Grotto in Selfridges department store in London, Dec 7, 2011. (Suzanne Plunkett/Reuters)

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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Anonymous asked:
My wife and I have been loyal listeners of your show for years. Even when we moved to Southampton, NY for 8 years, we were able to find a station and time to hear your very interesting guests, topics and insightful questions and we've progressed with you through the program's name and musical enhancement. But today's show, about TV Monster Shows, seemed to be more like a digression into your personal TV viewing habits and your zeal to appeal to a much younger audience of couch potatoes. Why?

Good morning, Anonymous—

First and foremost, thank you for listening to our program for eight years. This means you’ve been listening since the beginning when we started broadcasting nationally on public radio stations in 2003. What a journey that has been!

As to your critiques about "Monsters We Love: TV’s Pop Culture Theodicy," thank you for the feedback. It helps make us a better, more responsive program in the future and I’d be glad to address your two points. The assumption that we’re catering to a younger demographic isn’t correct. It never came up in any editorial planning meeting or scheduling discussion. Today’s television viewers come in all ages and races. This show came about in part because a fair number of our colleagues and friends over the age of 50 are talking about True Blood, Mad Men, and other shows in the office kitchen, the yoga studio, and at the local coffee shop. And so is Krista. We wanted to embrace this experience and insight, treating it as a production value in and of itself. 

That said, we are trying to open up a bit more and taking some fresh approaches. For a few shows each year, we will be address popular culture more directly when we can. We’re trying to serve many types of sensibilities, and this is one area that’s been neglected in my opinion. It’s a stretch area for us and we’re continually trying to find our producing voice for these types of shows.

As to your point about Diane Winston and our host’s “personal TV viewing habits” being a digression, I don’t think of it that way. The intent is to be inclusive as possible, creating an inside-the-room atmosphere. As a producer, I encourage her to show more of her personality in these types of shows about entertainment and culture. Isn’t that part of the power (and the fun) of television: being able to talk about scenes intimately with other people, even acquaintances.

She gives herself over, openly and honestly, to the questions about the material and the conversation. This tone and style had her step out from behind the microphone a bit more than usual so that she wasn’t just an outside observer who feels disconnected from what’s being talked about. Her questions come by way of familiarity and research. She’s a fan and a journalist. This line is a tricky one, and it may move depending on the individual ear.

You are not alone in your criticisms. Some listeners objected to this type of subject matter being on at such an early hour on stations, i.e. the talk about zombies and vampires. Others objected in that we didn’t address particular programs they were watching. But, we also heard from a new group of listeners, via email or Facebook,  who appreciated the show. This serves part of our mission too.

Thank you for sticking with us all these years and for adding to the discussion. Hopefully this brief note adds to your understanding of our decisions and we’ll do better next time. Please let us know if we don’t.

Kind regards, 
Trent Gilliss senior editor

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Anonymous asked:
what are on being showtimes on WGBH

Good morning, Anon—

WGBH airs our shows at 7 a.m. on Sunday mornings in Boston and surrounding communities. And, if you’re an early riser, WBUR also carries our program, broadcasting it at 6 a.m. on Sundays.

Hope this answers your question,
Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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Well, I think faith is just an interesting topic, and it’s something that I quite honestly struggle with. But I always find, however much I believe about the Catholic Church — and I have some major problems with it — I always find that going to church is a very peaceful and a really nice time for me. Sitting through Mass, and sitting in Mass. You know, the thought of forgiveness, redemption — those are things that hold an awful lot of beauty for me, and really relate to our lives, no matter who we are. So those are the kind of parts that I focus on. And obviously there are things that are really scary and awful that I try to forget about.
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Craig Finn with Belly Up signCraig Finn, lead singer of The Hold Steady in an interview with Slate

For many of Finn’s fans, you’ll probably enjoy this interview, but the Friday Night Lights die-hards will like it even more. I just wish the interviewer would’ve probed a bit deeper on this religion question rather than using it as a toss-away paragraph that doesn’t draw Finn out on the depths of his experience or at least follow up on his answer. What are his “major problems” with the Catholic Church? Forgiveness and redemption are present in many denominations and various religions; what is it about the Roman Catholic Mass that draws him in despite his misgivings? What does he think about and take back to his work and relationships? When he cites David Foster Wallace’s idea about “reading fiction as a form of meditation,” how does Finn put that into practice in his own life and art and faith?

Photo by dsopfe/Flickr, cc by-nc-sa 2.0.

~Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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washingtonpoststyle:

Nativity set made of bacon, sausage, sauerkraut.
Via WhyIsMarko.com, which has 26 other holy creations.

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

washingtonpoststyle:

Nativity set made of bacon, sausage, sauerkraut.

Via WhyIsMarko.com, which has 26 other holy creations.

~reblogged by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

Comments
So, what does this story have to do with modern-day Iran and Iranians? Everything. For the vast majority of Iranians who identify as Shi’a and even for many who don’t, the story of Karbala lies at the heart of all struggles against oppression and tyranny — personal and political.
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Melody Moezzi writes this smart, informative piece about the relevance of the one-thousand-year old story behind Ashura and modern-day politics in The Washington Post.

~Trent Gilliss, senior editor

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Centenarian Woman Thanks God and Deputies Who Defied Court Order to Evict

by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

Vinia Hall, 103"I knew that they know what they were doing. God don’t let them do wrong."
~Vinia Hall

Here’s one of those feel-good stories that makes you smile for human decency and feel a little bit sad knowing that this act of kindness may be an exception. On Tuesday, WSB Channel 2 in Atlanta reported that Vinia Hall, a 103-year-old woman, and her 83-year-old daughter were about to be evicted from her home when deputies of the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office and hired movers defied a court order to evict the two from their foreclosed home in northwest Atlanta.

For the purposes of this project, take note of the strong expressions of faith in God “making it right” and citations of the Bible, by Ms. Hall and also by a neighbor and community activist too.

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Johnny Cash and Shel Silverstein Sing Together in 1970 (video)

by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

It was inevitable that the “man in black” would come up during our interview with Rosanne Cash the week before Thanksgiving. What didn’t come up in the conversation was talk about Johnny Cash’s many friendships and endeavors, including hosting his own variety show on television from 1969 to 1971.

This delightful duet of “Boy Named Sue” with Shel Silverstein, a prolific songwriter and the man who wrote the song, showcases one of those friendships. The poet and children’s book author (yes, I still get choked up when reading The Giving Tree to my boys) then performs “Daddy, What If,” introducing the children’s song with a touching comment about his relationship with his father. That fondness for his own father was mirrored in the way Rosanne Cash spoke about her daddy too.

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At lectures there are always some who raise their hands. But I think it’s unethical to send young people, since there are serious health risks. You need highly trained scientists with a life expectancy of less than 20 years.
- Paul Davies, on sending people on a one-way trip to Mars in this month’s issue of Wired magazine

~Trent Gilliss, senior editor
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Show Your Gratitude and Honor Your Favorite Teacher for StoryCorps' National Day of Listening

by Trent Gilliss, senior editor

StoryCorps 2011 National Day of ListeningIf you read this blog or listen to our public radio program, you more than likely know that we’re super-big fans of Dave Isay and his StoryCorps project. And, for the fourth year now on the day after Thanksgiving, they celebrate by sponsoring a National Day of Listening. This year’s theme: show your gratitude and thank a teacher.

Honor your favorite teacher and share a story about her or him. You can write an essay or, even better, take your iPhone or Android set and record something for yourself and for us. We’re teaming up with NPR and StoryCorps and posting some of our favorite stories — audio, video, text, or tweet — right here on this blog. Or send a “thank you” Tweet to us at @Beingtweets (#thankateacher). Don’t worry about the technical details or that you say (or write) it perfectly, sometimes it’s most important that you just show up and say “Thank you!”

We can’t wait to hear your stories!

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