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Most Recent Episodes

Catching the Big Waves with Surf Photographer Sachi Cunningham

When big wave surfers tackle waves, Sachi Cunningham is often right behind them, bobbing in the ocean with nothing but a camera and a wetsuit. The water photographer and San Francisco State University professor has traveled the world, capturing images of pro surfers. She talks to us about her work, why there are so few female surf photographers and her documentary projects — including one covering ISIS in Iraq.

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The Unspoken Rule of Emojis

Nowadays, it's hard to find a text message conversation that doesn't include emojis, the popular Japanese icons. Feeling happy? Smiley face, sunshine, flowers! Sad over a breakup? Crying face, broken heart, woman. We look at the unspoken rules of emojis and emoji use across genders and generations. Our guests include a San Francisco linguist and the man who translated "Moby Dick" into emojis.

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State Looks on as San Jose Reaches Watered-Down Pension Deal

San Jose City Council passed a new pension deal with police and firefighter unions this week, essentially gutting the pension reform measure that San Jose voters passed overwhelmingly in 2012. We?ll discuss the deal and why the action could have repercussions for local governments across the state. We'll also hear about a state-wide pension modification ballot proposal co-authored by former San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed.

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More Migrants Found Dead as Hundreds of Thousands Flee to Europe

At least 50 migrants were found dead in the hold of a boat off the shores of Libya Wednesday, the latest asylum seekers to die attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea. So far this year, more than 2,000 people have died attempting the crossing. But Europe remains divided on how to tackle the rising numbers of migrants: Slovakia refuses to accept Muslims and Germany is seeing anti-immigrant protests as it tries to absorb some of the 800,000 migrants expected to arrive this year.

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Duck's Breath Mystery Theatre Reunites for Last Onstage Shows

Newsweek once called the San Francisco comedy troupe Duck's Breath Mystery Theater "an American Monty Python" for its unique brand of sketch comedy, satire and theatrics. The group regularly contributed to NPR's "All Things Considered" during the 1980s. Two of the group's members went on to to create the "misinfotainment" series "Dr. Science," which had a 25-year run on hundreds of NPR stations. We'll talk about Duck's Breath comedic legacy and its upcoming reunion shows.

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UC Berkeley Study: Gentrification Crisis is "Not Yet Half Over"

A team of University of California, Berkeley researchers has more bad news about rising prices in the Bay Area: We're not halfway through the gentrification and displacement we're likely to experience. That's according to the Urban Displacement Project, which released an interactive map showing the areas most vulnerable to forces that drive low-income residents out. We talk about the neighborhoods at the highest — and lowest — risk of continued gentrification.

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Silicon Valley's Naatak Theater Company Celebrates 20 Years

Since 1995, Naatak has been staging plays in the South Bay. The theater company identifies itself as the "largest Indian theater in the U.S." Its latest musical production, "Vrindavan," takes a closer look at the politics and social ills behind the city of Vrindavan, where widows are sent to live after their husbands die. We talk to playwright and artistic director Sujit Saraf about the new production and the company's larger artistic role in Silicon Valley. We'll also talk to KQED senior arts editor Chloe Veltman about what to watch for this fall arts season.

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UC Berkeley's Namwali Serpell Wins Caine Prize, Africa's Prestigious Short Story Award

Namwali Serpell is the 2015 winner of the Caine Prize, given annually to one African writer of short stories in English. The UC Berkeley associate professor chose to celebrate by sharing her $15,000 prize with the four other finalists. The Zambian writer joins us in studio to talk about her winning story, her writing career and why she calls splitting her prize money an "act of mutiny."

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China Cuts Interest Rates as Ripple Effects of 'Black Monday' Continue

Global markets remained volatile Tuesday, even as China cut key interest rates to boost its slumping stocks. The move came as other signs — like a shrinking manufacturing sector and weaker consumer spending — pointed to a slowing Chinese economy. Will the market crisis prompt meaningful economic reforms in China? Do the country's woes signal more turmoil ahead for the global economy?

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Steve Silberman Explores the Forgotten History of Autism

Today, one in 68 children is on the autism spectrum, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Yet despite decades of research, there is much we don't know about the disorder. We discuss the evolving definition, hidden history and public perception of autism with "NeuroTribes" author Steve Silberman.

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