Frank Stasio

Host, "The State of Things"

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.

From there he went to National Public Radio, where he rose from associate producer to newscaster for All Things Considered. He left that job in 1990 to help start an alternative school in Washington, DC. Frank returned to NPR as a freelance news anchor, guest host of Talk of The Nation and other national programs, and host of special news coverage.

He also presents audio theater workshops for children and teachers and conducts radio journalism workshops for broadcasters in former Soviet-bloc countries. He lives in Durham.

After 110 years in Southeast Raleigh, the town's YWCA has closed. The staff was fired on just one day's notice, and the programs that served the community are gone. Journalist Cash Michaels has been following this story closely for the Carolinian newspaper. He joins host Frank Stasio to talk about the sudden closing and its impact in Raleigh.

Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern is worried that the United States is going to go to war with Iran. McGovern was an outspoken critic of the conflict in Iraq and he is afraid that a determined Israeli

Creeds

Mar 22, 2012

Robert Hanssen was an FBI agent responsible for one of the worst intelligence disasters in history. Over 22 years, he passed along American secrets to the Soviet Union and later Russia.

The annual Dialogue on Progressive Enlightenment (DOPE) Conference was designed to examine developmental psychology in African and African-American communities. The event returns to the campus of North Carolina A&T State University and this year’s theme addresses the challenge of being a non-traditional college student.

Muslim womanhood and sensuality are rarely found in the same sentence, but a new collection of first-person accounts by Muslim women of romance and relationships challenges cultural and religious stereotypes.

Blues singer Lorenzo “Logie” Meachum is a storyteller, an educator and a lifelong learner. He grew up listening to soul music at his family’s juke joint and eventually began playing himself. Meachum particularly enjoys performing for children and earned an O. Henry Award for his commitment to arts and culture in the Triad region of North Carolina.

Muslim womanhood and sensuality are rarely found in the same sentence, but a new collection of first-person accounts by Muslim women of romance and relationships challenges cultural and religious stereotypes.

Blues singer Lorenzo “Logie” Meachum is a storyteller, an educator and a lifelong learner. He grew up listening to soul music at his family’s juke joint and eventually began playing himself. Meachum particularly enjoys performing for children and earned an O. Henry Award for

Humans have an inconsistent relationship with animals. Some of them we invite into our homes and treat as family. Others we send to slaughter and happily eat. Still others we are content to let roam wild, unimpeded by human hands.

Michael Franzak never had dreams of fighting for his country when he joined the Navy after high school, but he was desperate and had nowhere else to go.

Karel Husa was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia in 1921. As a young man, his city was occupied by Nazi Germany, which forced Husa to reconsider his career path. Instead of going to work in a factory, he decided to pursue music. That choice led him to study in Paris, then eventually become a professor of music at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. In 1969, Husa won the Pulitzer Prize for his composition, “String Quartet No. 3,” which featured viola and cello in key parts usually reserved for the violin.

Superhero Herald MF Jones faces off with the Beef Cooka’s deadliest henchman, Anvil Steel. Can the Jade City Pharaoh defeat a maniac made of metal?

A recent report from the Department of Veteran Affairs revealed a stark truth: every 80 minutes, a veteran takes his or her own life. The risk of suicide is even greater for service members suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD.

Most of the managed wilderness in America is not national park but national forest. In North Carolina for instance, we have 4 of them, the Pisgah, Croatan, Uwharrie and the Nantahala, and together they are the size of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, more than a million acres.

North Carolina is one of only two states where 16-year-old criminal suspects are automatically tried as adults. Proponents of raising the age to 18 have tried to get the law changed for years. This year, a bipartisan group of lawmakers is trying to make it happen, but opponents of the change say we shouldn't try to do too much too fast.

The Missing Martyrs

Mar 14, 2012

In March 2006, a former Tarheel named Mohammad Taheri-Azar drove an SUV through the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's campus during the busiest part of the day. The Iranian-American hoped to kill as many people as possible in the name of jihad. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured,

War crimes, violations of religion freedom and unfair labor practices are just a few of the many things considered by some to be violations of human rights. But what exactly is a human right?

When law professor Kenneth Broun began learning about the 1963 trial of Nelson Mandela, he was startled to discover the South African leader was expected to be put to death. Mandela spent 27 years in prison, but he eventually got out and became president.

Will Steacy is a photographer who realized that the photographs he didn't take were often as interesting as the ones he did. In talking to his photographer buddies, he discovered this was a common experience.

Businessman Kevin Trapani will tell you that his company, Redwoods Group, does well by doing good. Redwoods Group recently won an award that validates his claim. B-Lab, an organization that certifies socially responsible companies known as B-corps,

Three young poets traveled to Egypt and Tunisia last summer to document the revolutions sweeping the countries. They came back with a series of spoken-word pieces called "Poetic Portraits of a Revolution" that aired on WUNC in 2011. Those pieces have now become a stage show at the Carrboro ArtsCenter. Host Frank Stasio talks to Kane Smego and Will McInerney, the writers and poets that produced the play, and Joseph Megel, the director of “Poetic Portraits of a Revolution” on stage.

Hip-hop culture has long captivated America, changing the way we talk, think, dress and even treat one another.  The legacy of hip-hop is both positive and negative, and that's something that North Carolina State University wants the audience to consider at this year's

Hiss Golden Messenger

Mar 9, 2012

Hiss Golden Messenger's music has been described as "mystical country" by David Bowie. Long a darling of the British rock press, the band is based in Durham, NC and is the brainchild of folklorist MC Taylor. Their latest album is called "Poor Moon.” Taylor joins host Frank Stasio in the studio to talk tunes and play some live.

In the mid-1990s, Shawn Rocco's job as a photojournalist for the News & Observer newspaper changed. Video was added to his duties and he often found himself on deadline, tangled in wire, with two different mediums demanding his attention. The pictures and the video were less than satisfying and, as an artist, he felt empty.

Almost all musicians claim to have to have a unique sound, but the members of experimental band Invisible make good on that claim by performing compositions written for new instruments. In their show “The New Obsolete,” there’s a typewriter configured to play the piano keys and a system of valves that releases drops of water to play notes.

Like many young, lonely, bookish girls who had suffered personal heartbreak, Margot Livesey loved “Jane Eyre.” Charlotte Bronte’s classic story of a teenage governess who finds love by staying true to herself

Durham District Attorney Tracey Cline spent the past month fighting off an attempt to remove her from office. The battle occurred because of disparaging remarks she made against a Durham Superior Court Judge named Orlando Hudson. Friday, a different judge ruled that because of Cline's behavior toward Hudson, she should no longer be DA. Cline has appealed the verdict.

No Way Out

Mar 7, 2012

Kevin Maurer is a journalist intimately familiar with the U.S. Army Special Forces. He has made of habit of embedding with them, and he chronicles one of their biggest misadventures in his latest book, "No Way Out: A Story of Valor in the Mountains of Afghanistan" (Berkley Hardcover/2012), co-written with journalist Mitch Weiss. It tells the story of a group of Green Berets sent into a treacherous area of Afghanistan to capture a terrorist leader. Instead, the troops walked into an ambush.

Many of us know what it’s like to have a bad hair day, but the concept of “good hair” is something that has particular meaning for African-Americans. Good hair is used to express ideas about class, sexuality and education levels in the black community. This intrigued playwright Chaunesti Webb.

Contraception, access to health care and representation in Congress are issues that motivated feminist activists in the early 1960s and, if Rush Limbaugh's recent time in the headlines is any indication, those issues persist. Women have been effecting social and political change across the South for more than a century, but, if you read the history of the women's movement in America, you'd think all of the action happened in the Northeast.

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