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The latest from news outlets and blogs around the Northwest and beyond, chosen by Crosscut editors.

Harry Potter battles Voldemort .... and prejudice in the real world?

A new paper in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology claims that reading the Harry Potter series improves kids' perceptions of stigmatized groups. 

Scientists develop dark material naked eye can't see

A British company has produced a strange material so black that it absorbs all but 0.035 percent of visual light. The material is planned to be used for astronomical cameras, telescopes,  infrared scanning systems and secret military operations. 

THE INDEPENDENT

Programs target poverty in Obama's 'promise zones'

Five areas across the country — Philadelphia, San Antonio, southeastern Kentucky, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and Los Angeles — have been designated as "Promise Zones" by the federal government. These zones are intended to tackle poverty by focusing on specific areas, implementing programs like after-school classes, GED courses and job training to turn these areas around. But is the place-based approach the best solution? 

NPR
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