October 14th Show

Are U.S. marriage rates on the decline?

hide captionThe latest numbers on U.S. marriage rates show that the number of couples walking down the aisle has dropped. In our second hour, economist Justin Wolfers explains why those statistics don't tell the complete picture.

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Mammography
Nearly a year ago, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force released recommendations that challenged the cycle of breast cancer screenings routine for so many women, and confused doctors and patients alike. The federal panel said that women should begin getting mammograms at age 50, a decade later than previously recommended, and also said the screenings should be done every other year, rather than annually. The American Cancer Society and other major organizations continue to encourage women to follow the old guidelines, and just last month two studies came out that directly contradicted one another, and further muddied the waters. Guest host Jennifer Ludden talks with NPR health and science correspondent Richard Knox and Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer at the American Cancer Society, about how women and their health care providers are responding to these mixed messages.

Reviving the Physical
Doctors have long relied on the time-tested physical exam to diagnose illness, but in recent years expensive tests have taken the place of the humble physical.  One doctor is on a quest to revive the lost art of the physical. Dr. Abraham Verghese of Stanford University talks about why he believes that poking, prodding, looking and listening to a patient is still one of the best ways to diagnose illness.

Chilean Miners
The rescue of 33 miners in Chile captivated the world this week. Hundreds of journalists from around the globe descended on the San Jose Mine to cover the rescue. Millions watched on live television. And with all of this attention, the nation of Chile is feeling enormous pride. Guest host Jennifer Ludden talks with Chileans about the remarkable rescue and the lasting legacy of what many have called a miracle.

Bill Bryson, At Home
Bill Bryson, known for his travel writing, has pointed his compass at his own house. In his new book, "At Home: A Short History of Private Life," he explores the history of the world through the rooms in his home in the English country side and the objects that fill them. He traces the history of halls and dining rooms and objects we take for granted from the four-tined fork to salt and pepper shakers — Or the light bulb, and how newspaper readership sky-rocketed because of it. Bill Bryson talks with guest host Jennifer Ludden about everything you wanted to know about your house, but probably never thought to ask.

Marriage on a Recession
Bad economy and troubled marriage, they go together like a horse and carriage. We've heard that many times since the recession began, but is it true? Reports on marriage show fewer people are willing to walk down the aisle. The argument make intuitive sense... couples argue over money and split up, or they would rather wait out uncertain economic times before saying "I do." But in an op-ed in The New York Times, economist Justin Wolfers, warns that this is not true. He argues that marriage and divorce rates have remained "remarkably immune to the ups and downs of the business cycle."  Today, guest host Jennifer Ludden talks to Justin Wolfers about marriage on a recession.

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