Satisfy your hunger for new ideas with this interview show that explores the cutting edge of contemporary thinking in politics, religion, economics, science, the arts, and popular culture. Host Anne Strainchamps talks to some of the greatest thinkers, figures, and artists of our time. It's a radio salon where a playwright and a scientist, a theologian and a rock critic might all offer their views on, say, revenge. Inviting a diverse group of people with very different backgrounds to approach a subject creates a kind of depth and richness that's positively riveting.
"Sometimes great, very uneven"
A garden, a tree, an apple, and a serpent. The story of Adam and Eve is as old as sin. But it's a lot more than a Bible story. The doctrine of original sin shaped Christianity but also left its mark on everything from gun control to how we vote. In this episode, we consider the impact of original sin on politics, capitalism, psychology, and beyond.
On the centennial of Shirley Jackson's birth, we explore the great literary work that she left for us - the stories and novels that continue to resonate in our culture.
Do you believe that the government is keeping secrets from us? That the military is hiding evidence of alien visitations? Maybe you have a hard line to the truth - or maybe you're a sucker for conspiracy theories. Today, we explore why we love conspiracy theories and why we believe them.
H.P. Lovecraft's weird tales of cosmic horror loom large 125 years after his birth. His literary tentacles have oozed their way into movies, books, games, and graphic novels. We explore Lovecraft's life, work, and legacy. Was he a literary master or a monster?
Why are we so obsessed with the future? Is it because we can't handle the present and all of our current problems, like climate change, racism and terrorism? That's one theory. We explore our fascination with the future in this hour.
Computer scientists are closing in on the next frontier in artificial intelligence - machines that can create. Make art. Write stories. Compose music. The dream is to open the door to a whole new kind of creativity. But don't throw away your paintbrush yet - in this hour, we explore the dream and the limits of artificial creativity.
We're exploring love by the numbers, this week. Thirty-six questions, 40 first dates, and 43 equations - it's all part of the new mathematical science of love.
Music and social change go hand in hand. We explore the secret history of protest music. Songs and social movements you might have missed - from the early days of rock and roll to the non-violent hip hop message of FM Supreme.
If you've ever been alone on Valentine's Day, you probably know how isolating it can be to feel like the only single person in a world full of happy couples. But being alone doesn't have to be shameful. This hour, we're changing the script and making the case for the lovelorn, the loners, the bachelors and spinsters that there's nothing wrong with being alone.
We grow up scribbling with crayons and covering sidewalks with chalk, and then around middle school most of us stop. Maybe we think it's childish or just too hard. So what can we learn from the people who never stopped making art? We'll talk with activist artist Molly Crabapple and legendary painter/printmaker Frank Stella. We'll also get a hit of philosophy as we explore the deeper meaning of art.
How do you cope with unpleasant people? Like the jerk in the next cubicle or your loud-mouth brother-in-law? When there's no escape and you're stuck with someone you can't stand, what do you do? In this show, we consider the adage "hell is other people". Plus a conversation with writer T.C. Boyle on the limits of his own tolerance for other humans.
Ah, January. Season of diets and fasts and cleanses, of "Drynuary" and "Veganuary." Why does being virtuous always seem to mean giving up pleasure? This hour, we explore the concept of renunciation and our complicated feelings about it. Giving something up - whether a glass of wine or a way of life - can be hard and painful. The experience can change people in ways they don't expect - for better and for worse.
Nearly 20 million households in America are one paycheck away from losing their homes. For many of these families, keeping a roof over their head means having to choose between the rent or dinner that evening. This hour, we explore how housing insecurity drives poverty in America.
There are nearly 250 million migrants across the world right now. Some will be escaping war or oppression, others will be seeking out freedom or economic prosperity, but whatever the reason, the kind of life they're looking for lies across a border that's policed and restricted. What if it didn't have to be that way? This hour, we explore a world without borders.
Whatever happened to psychoanalysis? It used to be the most influential science of the mind, but today its founder, Sigmund Freud, just looks like a sex-obsessed old man. Analyst Adam Phillips says we got Freud all wrong; he remains a radical thinker if we know how to read him. This hour explores the connections between therapy and art.
Be strong, be tough, don't cry - boys are bombarded with messages about being a man and the "male code" beginning around five or six years old. By high school, it's second nature. But it can also be toxic. Because boys in America today aren't doing so well. Compared to girls, they're more likely to get diagnosed with a behavior disorder, drop out of school, binge drink, commit a violent crime, even kill themselves. So is that what it means to "man up"?
When did "fat" become a four-letter word? Leaders of the body acceptance movement say it's time to stop shaming fat people. In this hour, curvy girls and plus-size women talk about the emotional and physical costs of America's toxic obsession with weight and body image.
Every new year brings a fresh start, another chance to remake yourself. We all aspire to be better people, but following through on our goals can often be difficult.