1:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
Asia

Future Uncertain For Reclusive North Korea

The death of North Korea's Kim Jong Il leaves many open questions about the secretive country's future. Former Ambassador Christopher Hill and North Korea experts Hazel Smith and Alexander Monsourov discuss how Kim's death may affect the country's relationship with the international community.

1:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
Europe

Dorfman on Havel: One Playwright Remembers Another

Originally published on Mon December 19, 2011 2:31 pm

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

Read more

1:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
Iraq

What Lessons Should Americans Draw From Iraq War?

The American public, military and the intelligence community were all affected by the Iraq war. Tom Ricks of the Center for a New American Security, retired Marine Col. Gary Anderson and Army veteran Andrew Exum discuss how Americans will remember the war, and what we should learn from it.

1:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
NPR Story

'The Art Of Fielding': Baseball Meets Literature

Chad Harbach's debut novel The Art of Fielding is as much about literary fiction as it is about America's national past time. The book follows the baseball team at a small liberal arts college in Wisconsin — with side trips to the big leagues of American literature.

Henry Skrimshander is that college's talented but socially awkward shortstop, destined for big-league stardom. But when a routine throw goes wrong, Henry's life falls apart as he ends up embroiled in conflicts with his teammates, his roommate and a school administrator.

Read more

12:58pm

Mon December 19, 2011
The Two-Way

Kim Jong Il's Legacy? 'North Korea Is Dark'

Originally published on Mon December 19, 2011 3:03 pm

North Korea's borders are outlined.
NASA via Afrikent

There's certainly already been a lot said about North Korea's Kim Jong Il. NPR's Anthony Kuhn has an obit and Planet Money has a recap of how North Korea's economy is fueled by drug dealing and smuggling of counterfeit goods.

Read more

12:28pm

Mon December 19, 2011
North Korea In Transition

Key Moments In The Rule Of Kim Jong Il

Korean Central News Agency photo released on Jan. 18, 2009, showing North Korean leader Kim Jong Il posing with soldiers.
STR AFP/Getty Images

Kim Jong Il succeeded his father and ruled the secretive nation for 17 years. It was a period that included repeated friction with the international community over North Korea's nuclear weapons program and a devastating famine in the late 1990s that may have been responsible for upwards of 2 million deaths.

12:25pm

Mon December 19, 2011
The Two-Way

VIDEOS: Christmas-Themed 'Senior Citizen Flash Mobs' Are Spreading

Originally published on Mon December 19, 2011 12:26 pm

The senior citizens flash mob in Kansas.
YouTube

12:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
Music

Jazz Pianist Gives Holiday Classics A New Swing

On his new album, Celebrating Christmas, veteran jazz pianist Marcus Roberts turns out a ragtime rendition of "Joy to the World," as well as other smooth but cheerful versions of holiday classics like "Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!" Host Michel Martin speaks with Roberts about his desire to get toes tapping during the holidays.

12:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
NPR Story

Decades Later, Did Those Scholarships Pay Off?

In 1988, a group of Maryland fifth-graders received college scholarships from two philanthropists. Now those students are in their 30s and their lives are chronicled in The Washington Post magazine. Host Michel Martin speaks with reporter Paul Schwartzman and one of those students about how the scholarship affected their lives.

12:00pm

Mon December 19, 2011
NPR Story

A White Writer Gives Advice To A 'Poor Black Kid'

Writer Gene Marks caused a ruckus online with his recent blog post offering advice on how poor back children can succeed in life. He drew a great deal of criticism, including a sharp response from author and blogger Baratunde Thurston of The Onion. Host Michel Martin speaks with Thurston about the controversy.

Pages