Subscribe: KERA's Think Podcast
Added By: Feedage Forager Feedage Grade B rated
Language: English
american  book  guest host  joins guest  joins talk  joins  new book  new  press  talk  university  world  writes   
Rate this Feed
Rate this feedRate this feedRate this feedRate this feedRate this feed
Rate this feed 1 starRate this feed 2 starRate this feed 3 starRate this feed 4 starRate this feed 5 star

Comments (0)

Feed Details and Statistics Feed Statistics
Preview: KERA's Think Podcast

KERA's Think

Published: Thu, 22 Mar 2018 20:30:58 +0000

Last Build Date: Thu, 22 Mar 2018 20:33:31 +0000

Copyright: 071003

Sorting The Refugees From The Opportunists

Thu, 22 Mar 2018 20:30:58 +0000

Europe is still trying to figure out how to accommodate the wave of migrants seeking another life there. Among the issues is: How can a nation separate the true refugees from the economic opportunists? Graeme Wood joins us to talk about a sophisticated program in Germany seeking to solve that problem. He writes about it for The Atlantic.

Media Files:

The Dangers Of Consensus And Compromise

Thu, 22 Mar 2018 20:30:20 +0000

At the office, it’s often easiest to just go with the flow. Psychologist Charlan Nemeth joins us to talk about why consensus is the killer of innovation. She writes about the idea in “In Defense of Troublemakers: The Power of Dissent in Life and Business” (Basic Books).

Media Files:

The Cutting Edge Of Alzheimer’s Research

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 18:28:53 +0000

The medical community is constantly refining its approach to how we care for people suffering from dementia. Heather Snyder, senior director for medical and scientific relations with the Alzheimer’s Association, joins us to talk about the latest trends in patient care. She’s in town for the Alzheimer’s Association’s spring symposium on Thursday in Arlington.

Media Files:

Learning To Wage Peace

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 19:29:52 +0000

Paul Chappell graduated from West Point and served in the Iraq War. And today, he’s one of America’s foremost voices for peace. He joins us to talk about nonviolent tools available to solve conflict in the world. 

Media Files:

The Feds Are Braced For Revolution

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 19:27:55 +0000

In the last decade, we’ve seen increasingly militarized police departments, invasive surveillance by the NSA and highly sophisticated propaganda. Columbia law professor Bernard E. Harcourt has followed these trends, and he joins us to talk about how these tools of counterinsurgency are being used to govern Americans. He writes about the topic in “The Counterrevolution: How Our Government Went to War Against Its Own Citizens” (Basic Books).

Media Files:

LBJs Political Implosion

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 19:50:49 +0000

In the later years of Lyndon Johnson’s administration, the president’s attention was divided between the unwinnable Vietnam War and civil unrest at home. These turbulent years are captured in Robert Schenkkan’s play “The Great Society” – his follow up to his Tony-winning “All the Way.” The play is currently on stage at the Wyly Theatre, and director Kevin Moriarty and actor Shawn Hamilton join us to talk about how LBJ managed this difficult time. “The Great Society” runs through April 1.

Media Files:

Is The Endangered Species List Too Long?

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 19:50:12 +0000

The Endangered Species Act requires that we try to help all species threatened with extinction. Critics argue, though, that resources would be better spent helping the creatures that contribute most to their ecosystems. Jennifer Kahn joins us to talk about how this conflict is currently playing out on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, which she writes about for The New York Time magazine.

Media Files:

Learning To Leave: A Woman’s Journey

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 20:21:29 +0000

Tara Westover grew up in a family of survivalists, living way off the grid and learning only what her family taught her. She joins us to tell the story of how she finally learned of the outside world – and how that knowledge led her to Harvard, Cambridge and beyond. Her new memoir is called “Educated”(Random House).

Media Files:

Things May Not Be As Bad As You Think

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 20:55:24 +0000

Turn on the news and you’re bombarded with plenty of reasons to think humanity is a lost cause. Not so, says Steven Pinker! The Harvard psychology professor joins us to talk about how we’re actually living in an age of unprecedented safety, peace and prosperity, which he writes about in “Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress” (Viking).

Media Files:

Texas’ Mass Mexican Deportation

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 20:54:45 +0000

During the Great Depression, there was a push to preserve jobs for white Americans by deporting Mexicans – and in some cases, Mexican-Americans. TCU assistant professor Melita M. Garza joins us to talk about how this story was covered in the media and how that coverage contributed to racial “othering” of Mexicans in Texas. Her new book is called “They Came to Toil: Newspaper Representation of Mexicans and Immigrants in the Great Depression” (University of Texas Press).

Media Files:

From Martha To Melania: A History Of First Ladies

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 19:44:43 +0000

First ladies of the United States have no formal power – and yet many are among the most influential people in American history. A new exhibition at the George W. Bush Presidential Center tells the stories of each first lady – from Martha Washington to Melania Trump. We talk with George W. Bush Institute Deputy Director Natalie Gonnella-Platts about the roles these women have played in American life. “First Ladies: Style of Influence” is on display through Oct. 1.

Media Files:

A Celebration Of Procrastination

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 19:44:09 +0000

The next time you blow a deadline, remind yourself: Some of history’s greatest minds were lousy when it came to being on time. Andrew Santella joins us to talk about why punctuality is an overblown character trait, which he writes about in “Soon: An Overdue History of Procrastination, from Leonardo and Darwin to You and Me” (Dey Street Books).

Media Files:

Fishing For A New Way Of Life

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 19:53:58 +0000

People living along the coast of Senegal have relied on the ocean both for food and their livelihood. In recent years, though, the fish that were once plentiful have disappeared. Anna Badkhen visited these fishing villages to find out how people are surviving in an era of upheaval. She joins us to talk about what she learned, which she writes about in “Fisherman’s Blues: A West African Community at Sea” (Riverhead Books). Badkhen speaks tonight to the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture.

Media Files:

Scrolling For Happiness

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 19:53:23 +0000

We all feel a little boost when someone likes our Instagram photo or retweets us. And when our witty Facebook post is met with silence, it’s easy to wonder where we went wrong. Washington University in St. Louis psychologist Tim Bono joins us to talk about how social media plays on our emotions, which he writes about in “When Likes Aren’t Enough: A Crash Course in the Science of Happiness” (Grand Central).

Media Files:

The Landscape Of Black America

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 19:43:48 +0000

Following Emancipation, African-Americans created communities across the country in which black culture thrives. UCLA sociologist Marcus Anthony Hunter joins us to talk about what these communities have in common – and about the many functions they serve. His new book is called “Chocolate Cities: The Black Map of American Life.” (University of California Press).

Media Files:

Portraits Of Opioid Addiction

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 19:43:04 +0000

About 64,000 people die each year after overdosing on drugs. Many of those deaths can be traced to opioids, and the issue has grabbed the attention of both the medical community and the federal government. Time Magazine spent a year documenting the problem, and Paul Moakley, deputy director of photography and visual enterprise, joins us to talk about what he learned from interacting with addicts.

Media Files:

The Evolutionary Quest For Equilibrium

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 21:02:51 +0000

Human beings have a natural desire for what’s known as “homeostasis” – basically, we long for stability and equilibrium. Neuroscientist Antonio Damasio has studied this innate drive, and he joins us to talk about how it connects us to even the earliest living organisms. His new book is called “The Strange Order of Things: Life, Feeling, and the Making of Cultures” (Pantheon).

Media Files:

The Challenges Of Fixing Immigration

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 21:02:15 +0000

When it comes to immigration reform, at the heart of the debate is: How do we decide who to let in, and how do we protect ourselves from those we want to keep out? James F. Hollifield, director of the John Goodwin Tower Center at SMU, joins us to walk through these tough questions. His essay “What Makes Immigration Reform So Hard?” appears in the winter issue of The Catalyst.

Media Files:

The Upside Of Forgetting

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 21:14:48 +0000

As a palliative care nurse, Sallie Tisdale has seen the devastation caused by dementia up close. And she’s also seen moments of grace that accompany a person’s rediscovery of things they once knew. She joins us to talk about how we might take a more nuanced approach to interacting with people suffering memory loss, which she writes about for Harper’s.

Media Files:

A Guide To Repairing Sorrow

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 21:14:05 +0000

A broken heart may not be an actual physical malady, but that doesn’t make it any less real. And yet for most of us, the only medicine available is time. Psychologist Guy Winch joins us to talk about practical steps to getting over everything from a failed relationship to the death of a loved one. His new book is called “How to Fix a Broken Heart” (Simon & Schuster).

Media Files:

A Conversation With Maria Shriver

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 20:52:58 +0000

Maria Shriver has worn many hats in her life – journalist, activist, First Lady of California, niece of a president and mother of four. She joins us to talk about what these various roles have taught her about making the most of life. Her new book is called “I’ve Been Thinking: Reflections, Prayers, and Meditations for a Meaningful Life” (Viking).

Media Files:

The Science Of Planning Your Life

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 20:52:29 +0000

Deciding when to do something – whether it’s starting a job, ending a relationship or just scheduling a vacation – can be tough since we have to make these choices without knowing what’s to come. Daniel Pink has studied how we can use data to better plan our lives, which he writes about in “When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing” (Riverhead Books).

Media Files:

Robert Siegel On Four Decades At NPR

Mon, 05 Mar 2018 20:40:51 +0000

As an anchor of “All Things Considered,” Robert Siegel updated millions of Americans on the day’s news as they made their way home from work. Siegel retired in January, and he joins us to talk about how he helped to elevate NPR from a fledgling network into a major media organization.

Media Files:

What Makes Innovators Tick

Mon, 05 Mar 2018 20:40:23 +0000

True innovators throughout history – from Edison to Einstein – possessed innate character traits that separated them from even run-of-the-mill geniuses. That’s according to NYU business professor Melissa A. Schilling, who joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about the qualities that connect the world’s great visionaries. Her new book is called “Quirky: The Remarkable Story of the Traits, Foibles, and Genius of Breakthrough Innovators Who Changed the World” (PublicAffairs).

Media Files:

A Conversation With St. Vincent

Fri, 02 Mar 2018 16:11:57 +0000

For more than a decade, Annie Clark has been one of the darlings of the indie rock universe – from playing with the Polyphonic Spree and touring with Sufjan Stevens to releasing her own material as St. Vincent. The Dallas native joins us to talk about her musical influences, how she writes a song and what it’s like to perform with your heroes.

Media Files:

Consequences of Tribalism in America

Thu, 01 Mar 2018 21:17:38 +0000

In America, we’re good at dividing ourselves into groups based on race, religion and ideology. Yale Law professor Amy Chua joins us to talk about how our tribalism influences the ways in which we interact with the rest of the world – and about how we might transcend these divides. Her new book is called “Political Tribes: Group Instinct and the Fate of Nations” (Penguin Press).

Media Files:

Tayari Jones Updates The Great American Novel

Thu, 01 Mar 2018 21:17:14 +0000

In the novel “An American Marriage,” a newlywed couple is split apart when the husband is convicted of a crime he didn’t commit. And when Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, Celestial is confronted by the reality that she’s moved on. The book is the latest from novelist Tayari Jones, who joins us to talk about writing a love story set against a backdrop of racial injustice.

Media Files:

Data And Discrimination

Wed, 28 Feb 2018 20:34:23 +0000

When we search for something online, an algorithm designed by the people running the search engine selects the results we see. University of Southern California assistant professor Safiya Umoja Noble joins us to talk about how data can discriminate, the topic of her book “Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism” (NYU Press).

Media Files:

Previewing The Oscars

Wed, 28 Feb 2018 20:33:56 +0000

This Sunday’s Academy Awards is shaping up as a two-horse race for best picture between “The Shape of Water” and “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” But could “Get Out” or “Lady Bird” pull an upset? We work through the possibilities with a panel of North Texas film experts.

Media Files:

How Social Media Manipulates Public Thinking

Tue, 27 Feb 2018 20:24:50 +0000

Earlier this month, special counsel Robert Muller filed an indictment of 13 Russians, accusing them of using social media networks to undermine the 2016 presidential election. As Think broadcasts from the studios of Houston Public Media, we talk with University of Houston assistant professor of communications Erica Ciszek about how special interest groups are increasingly using social media to influence and confuse public discourse.

Media Files:

High Tech Versus Low Tech: Options For The Border

Tue, 27 Feb 2018 20:24:21 +0000

President Trump’s March 5 deadline for Congress to save the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program is fast approaching. As Think broadcasts from the studios of Houston Public Media, we talk with Luis Torres of the University of Houston’s Borders, Trade and Immigration Institute about what’s necessary for Congress to reach a deal – and about new technology that could soon play a role in border security.

Media Files:

SpaceX And Beyond

Mon, 26 Feb 2018 20:49:21 +0000

Earlier this month, SpaceX made headlines when it successfully launched its Falcon Heavy rocket. As Think broadcasts from the studios of Houston Public Media, we talk with Jason Davis about the significance of the launch – and about the impact Elon Musk and others are having on space exploration. Davis writes about the topic for The Planetary Society.

Media Files:

Hurricane Harvey Six Months Later

Mon, 26 Feb 2018 20:44:36 +0000

In August, the Texas Gulf Coast was devastated by Hurricane Harvey, which caused an estimated $125 billion worth of damage. As Think broadcasts from the studios of Houston Public Media, we talk about the city’s recovery six months after the storm with Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Marvin Odum – who’s heading the city’s rebuilding effort.

Media Files:

Sunni Versus Shia In The Muslim World: How We Got To Now

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 20:26:24 +0000

Iran and Saudi Arabia are arguably the two most powerful forces in the Middle East. And their decades of conflict have fueled much of the region’s unrest. Martin Smith joins us to talk about the current state of their relationship – and how we got to now. His two-part Frontline documentary airs Feb. 20 and 27 on KERA-TV.

Media Files:

A Black Feminist In White America

Thu, 22 Feb 2018 20:50:13 +0000

Black women in America are doubly disenfranchised by race and gender. It’s a state of being that social critic Morgan Jerkins has thought deeply about, and she joins us to talk about what it is to be a black feminist. Her new collection of essays is called “This Will be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America” (Harper Perennial).

Media Files:

Think Your Life Has No Meaning? Think Again

Thu, 22 Feb 2018 20:47:10 +0000

Philosophers have pondered the meaning of life from the beginning of recorded history. Haifa University philosophy professor Iddo Landau continues the discussion with practical advice for adding significance to our lives. His new book is called “Finding Meaning in an Imperfect World” (Oxford University Press).

Media Files:

Sexual Harassment And The Service Industry

Wed, 21 Feb 2018 21:37:22 +0000

Women in the food service industry are put in an uncomfortable position. A little flirting might lead to a bigger tip. Too often, though, customers expect more than just good service. Bryce Covert joins us to talk about if #metoo could make things better for women working as waitresses, bartenders and hosts. Her story “When Harassment is the Price of a Job” appears in The Nation.

Media Files:

Why Talk Therapy Is Still Important

Wed, 21 Feb 2018 21:36:48 +0000

Rising healthcare costs have made it difficult for patients in psychotherapy programs to continue their treatment. Psychologist Enrico Gnaulati joins us to talk about why psychotropic drugs aren’t always the answer – and about why talking is still the way to go for many patients. His book is called “Saving Talk Therapy: How Health Insurers, Big Pharma, and Slanted Science are Ruining Good Mental Health Care” (Beacon Press).

Media Files:

Seismic Shift: How An Earthquake Inspired An Engineer

Tue, 20 Feb 2018 20:52:59 +0000

Menzer Pehlivan was a teenager in 1999 when a 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck her hometown of Ankara, Turkey. The experience inspired her to become a civil engineer in hopes of mitigating future seismic destruction. She joins us to talk about how she and her fellow engineers are creating a better world, the subject of the documentary “Dream Big 3D,” currently playing at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science and the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History.

Media Files:

The Secret Lives And Loves Of The Roosevelts

Tue, 20 Feb 2018 20:51:37 +0000

Lorena Hickok covered Franklin Roosevelt’s first presidential campaign before taking a job in the administration and eventually moving into the White House. Her true connection, though, was with First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Writer Amy Bloom explores their relationship in her latest novel, “White Houses” (Random Houses) and she joins us to talk about the complicated love triangle that once occupied America’s most powerful address.

Media Files:

At The Table With Michael Pollan

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 22:17:21 +0000

As the author of “Food Rules,” “In Defense of Food,” and “The Omnivore’s Dilemma,” Michael Pollan is one of America’s preeminent food writers. He joins us to talk about how we think about food from a cultural, environmental and historical perspective. And we’ll talk about the focus of his upcoming book: psychedelic drugs. He speaks Tuesday night at the University of Texas at Arlington as part of the Mavericks Speaker Series.

Media Files:

When You’re The Only One

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 20:25:51 +0000

When you look around the room and no one else looks like you, talks like you or even thinks like you, it can be isolating. We devote this hour to those people who feel like they’re the only one – from a black woman hiker sharing the trails with predominately white men, to an overweight yogi, to a lefthander in a right-handed world.

Media Files:

The Power Of Pay: Working Women In The Muslim World

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 20:11:48 +0000

In the last decade, millions of women in the Muslim world have joined the workforce. And with pay comes power. Economist Saadia Zahidi joins us  to talk about how these working women are reshaping cultural norms. Her book is called

Media Files:

Health Consequences Of A Terrible Childhood

Thu, 15 Feb 2018 22:37:08 +0000

Poverty, stress, neglect and other childhood traumas can affect a person’s mental health into adulthood. Dr. Nadine Burke Harris joins us to talk about research that shows these traumas can also affect physical health. Her new book is called “The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Adversity” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).

Media Files:

How To Have A Good Death

Thu, 15 Feb 2018 22:34:20 +0000

We all hope to die peacefully at home at a ripe old age. And while many of us are living longer, the end of life has gotten increasingly complicated. Dr. Samuel Harrington joins us to talk about how to have tough conversations about our end-of-life wishes – and about how we can avoid medical intervention when there’s little left to save. His new book is called “At Peace: Choosing a Good Death After a Long Life” (Grand Central).

Media Files:

Is The FBI Prosecuting Black Identity?

Wed, 14 Feb 2018 22:51:07 +0000

In December, a Dallas man named Rakem Balogun was arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm and remains in federal custody. Balogun has been a vocal critic of law enforcement, which has his friends and family wondering if he was targeted by the FBI for his beliefs. Martin de Bourmont joins us to talk about what could be the first case prosecuting what the FBI calls a “black identity extremist.” He writes about the topic for Foreign Policy magazine.

Media Files:

The Untold History Of HBCUs

Wed, 14 Feb 2018 22:48:23 +0000

The first of America’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities opened its doors before the end of slavery. Stanley Nelson joins us to talk about the important ways that HBCUs have contributed to American life. His new Independent Lens documentary “Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities.” 

Media Files:

Why Work Hard When You Can Work Smart?

Tue, 13 Feb 2018 20:33:36 +0000

From a young age, we’re taught that working hard is a virtue. University of California, Berkeley management professor Morten T. Hansen joins us to talk about how we can ease off the gas by learning to work smarter. His new book is called “Great at Work: How Top Performers Do Less, Work Better, and Achieve More” (Simon & Schuster).

Media Files:

Cooperation: The Real Secret To Success

Tue, 13 Feb 2018 20:33:04 +0000

At times it can feel that being successful as an individual requires the defeat of the competition. Shawn Achor joins us to talk about why that falls under what he calls “small potential” thinking – and about why achieving “big” potential requires working with those around us. His new book is called “Big Potential: How Transforming the Pursuit of Success Raises Our Achievement, Happiness, and Well-Being” (Currency). He speaks tonight as part of DMA Arts & Letters Live! at the Dallas Museum of Art.

Media Files:

How To Make Screen Time Family Time

Mon, 12 Feb 2018 21:08:18 +0000

Parents are generally clued into the idea of limiting the amount of time their kids spend in front of screens. The science is unclear, though, about how much is too much. NPR education reporter Anya Kamenetz joins us to talk about her quest to find the right balance, which she writes about in “The Art of Screen Time: How Your Family Can Balance Digital Media and Real Life” (Hachette).

Media Files:

Why ‘Why?’ Isn’t Always the Right Question

Mon, 12 Feb 2018 21:07:42 +0000

One of the most difficult questions to answer is “why?” Sociologist Gregory Smithsimon joins us to talk about how often the question actually leads us down the wrong path and encourages us to overlook our own biases. His new book is called “Cause … And How it Doesn’t Always Equal Effect” (Melville House).

Media Files:

Seeing The Border From Both Sides

Thu, 08 Feb 2018 20:33:47 +0000

For four years, Francisco Cantú kept watch over the deserts of New Mexico, Arizona and Texas working for the U.S. Border Patrol. He joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about how his time spent along the border forced him to consider the violence inflicted on those who live along it. His new book is called “The Line Becomes a River: Dispatches from the Border” (Riverhead Books). He speaks tonight at Interabang Books in Dallas. And he’ll be back in Dallas April 8 for an appearance at the Dallas Museum of Art.

Media Files:

How The Poor People’s Campaign Changed Protests Forever

Thu, 08 Feb 2018 20:33:11 +0000

A month after Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination, a group of activists gathered on the National Mall for six weeks to live in a shantytown settlement called Resurrection City. The camp is the subject of a new exhibition at the National Museum of American History, and guest host Courtney Collins talks about how the live-in demonstration changed how people peacefully protest with Allison Keyes, who writes about it for Smithsonian magazine.

Media Files:

Why Latino Is A Race

Wed, 07 Feb 2018 20:53:09 +0000

At the end of the U.S-Mexico War, America gained hundreds of miles of new territory, including Texas. This acquisition of land created a new population of Mexican Americans who didn’t quite fit into the country’s existing racial hierarchy. UCLA professor Laura E. Gómez joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about the role Mexican Americans have played in U.S. racial history – and about how they have long held what Gómez refers to as an “off white” status. Her book is called “Manifest Destinies: The Making of the Mexican American Race” (New York University Press).

Media Files:

An Inmate’s Fight To Clear His Name

Wed, 07 Feb 2018 20:51:42 +0000

Over the last 30 years, about 350 inmates have had their convictions overturned thanks to DNA analysis. Barbara Bradley Hagerty joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about options for wrongfully convicted prisoners who don’t have access to DNA evidence. Her story “Can You Prove Your Innocence Without DNA?” appears in The Atlantic.

Media Files:

How To Keep Your Brain Young

Tue, 06 Feb 2018 20:52:47 +0000

Decreased brain function is a fact of aging that many of us will deal with. New research shows, though, that some of our cognitive function can be extended. Dr. Sandra Bond Chapman, chief director of UT-Dallas’ Center for BrainHealth, joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about new training strategies that can make our brains more energy efficient and better able to cope with aging.

Media Files:

A History Of Transgender America

Tue, 06 Feb 2018 20:52:20 +0000

The stories of transgender Americans have gone largely untold in part because so many of them have felt compelled to hide their identities. Susan Stryker, associate professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Arizona, joins guest host Courtney Collins to walk through the last half-century of progress made by transgender Americans. Her book is called “Transgender History: The Roots of Today’s Revolution” (Seal Press).

Media Files:

Finding Magic In Everything

Mon, 05 Feb 2018 20:44:33 +0000

As a magician, Nate Staniforth’s job is to amaze audiences through slight-of-hand. And after years onstage, he felt there wasn’t much wonder to life when you know how the tricks are performed. He joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about his journey to rediscover awe in everyday life, which he writes about in “Here Is Real Magic: A Magician’s Search for Wonder in the Modern World” (Bloomsbury Publishing).

Media Files:

Stopping Child Abuse Before It’s Too Late

Mon, 05 Feb 2018 20:43:38 +0000

Each day, social workers must decide whether or not the children they visit should be removed from their parents’ homes. And that decision often changes the courses of those kids’ lives. Naomi Schaefer Riley, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, joins guest host Courtney Collins to talk about how we can better harness statistical information to help make these decisions. Her story “Can Big Data Help Save Abused Kids?” appears in Reason magazine.

Media Files:

The Town That Builds Olympic Champions

Fri, 02 Feb 2018 20:33:15 +0000

Only 3,000 people call Norwich home. And yet the tiny Vermont town has sent an athlete to nearly every Winter Olympics for the last 30 years. New York Times reporter Karen Crouse joins us to talk about the town’s formula for creating world-class athletes, which she writes about “Norwich: One Tiny Vermont Town’s Secret to Happiness and Excellence” (Simon & Schuster).

Media Files:

Is American Democracy Vulnerable?

Thu, 01 Feb 2018 20:51:31 +0000

The Western world celebrates when a dictatorship or monarchy transitions into a democracy. Not all democracies last forever, though. Harvard government professor Steven Levitsky joins us to talk about the societal fissures that have historically taken down these republics. His new book is called “How Democracies Die” (Crown).

Media Files:

Separate And Unequal: What the History Books Left Out

Thu, 01 Feb 2018 20:49:17 +0000

Throughout American history, black and Latino Americans have often found common ground in the struggle for civil rights. University of Florida associate history professor Paul Ortiz joins us to talk about their achievements – and about efforts to keep them apart in order to hinder their progress. His book is called “An African American and LatinX History of the United States” (Beacon Press). Paul Ortiz speaks at TCU on Feb. 15.

Media Files:

Imagining A Future Without Opioids

Wed, 31 Jan 2018 21:13:03 +0000

Since 2000, more than 300,000 Americans have died after overdosing on opioids, according to the CDC. Ted Price researches chronic pain at UT-Dallas, and he joins us to talk about arguably America’s most important public health crisis – and about the prospects for non-opioid pain medication.

Media Files:

Should We Try To Raise Geniuses?

Wed, 31 Jan 2018 21:12:25 +0000

When parents realize they are raising a child prodigy, their imaginations often run wild with the possibilities. Ann Hulbert joins us to talk about the plusses and minuses of being a child genius. Her new book is called “Off the Charts: The Hidden Lives and Lessons of American Child Prodigies” (Knopf).

Media Files:

How To Stay Married In Middle Age

Tue, 30 Jan 2018 20:53:47 +0000

Financial problems, long-term illness and parenting are common stresses on a marriage. A less commonly discusses strain, though, is the fact that we inevitably change as we age. Psychologist Daphne de Marneffe joins us to talk about how spouses can flourish both as individuals and as a couple, which she writes about in “The Rough Patch: Marriage and the Art of Living Together”(Scribner).

Media Files:

We’re Not Ready For A Pandemic

Tue, 30 Jan 2018 20:48:39 +0000

This flu season has been particularly rough as more than 2,000 Texans have already died after contracting it. Harvard Medical School faculty member and chair of the Global Health Council Dr. Jonathan D. Quick joins us to talk about practical ways to stop influenza, Ebola, SARS and other outbreaks before they begin. His new book is called “The End of Epidemics: The Looming Threat to Humanity and How to Stop It” (St. Martin’s Press).

Media Files:

America Was Built On Slavery

Mon, 29 Jan 2018 20:38:14 +0000

The Declaration of Independence doesn’t mince words when it states that “all men are created equal.” And yet the country’s other foundational document – The Constitution – protected the most unequal of institutions in slavery. Harvard Law professor Annette Gordon-Reed joins us to talk about how America has struggled since its founding to reconcile these conflicting ideas. Her essay “America’s Original Sin” appears in Foreign Affairs magazine.

Media Files:

Voices From Trump Country

Mon, 29 Jan 2018 20:37:37 +0000

Virginia’s Buchanan County relies on its coal mines to fuel its economy. And that dedication played out in the 2016 election as Donald Trump won a whopping 78.9 percent of the county’s vote. Wall Street Journal reporter Joshua Jamerson recently visited Buchanan County, and he joins us to talk about how its residents reflect the views of Trump supporters nationwide.

Media Files:

The Way Vietnam Could Have Gone

Fri, 26 Jan 2018 20:19:41 +0000

CIA operative Edward Landsdale arrived in Vietnam in 1954 with a mission of winning over the hearts and minds of the people of South Vietnam. Historian Max Boot joins us to talk about how Lansdale’s diplomatic efforts were squashed by the American industrial complex, which he writes about in “The Road Not Taken: Edward Lansdale and the American Tragedy in Vietnam” (Liveright).

Media Files:

When Did Art Begin?

Thu, 25 Jan 2018 20:18:40 +0000

Humans have been using handaxes for more than 2 million years. And for the first time, a museum is considering these tools as works of art. Artist Tony Berlant and anthropologist Thomas Wynn join us to talk about how early humans created objects that were both useful and beautiful. They curated “First Sculpture: Handaxe to Figure Stone,” an exhibition that opens Saturday at the Nasher Sculpture Center.

Media Files:

In Defense Of Decorum

Thu, 25 Jan 2018 20:18:06 +0000

In the most tense situations, civility goes a long way in keeping the peace. It’s a lesson Lea Berman learned while serving as White House Social Secretary under President George W. Bush. She joins us to talk about how we can boost our social skills in both personal and professional settings. Her new book – written with Obama White House Social Secretary Jeremy Bernard – is called “Treating People Well: The Extraordinary Power of Civility at Work and in Life” (Scribner). She’ll talk about it tonight during Authors Live! at Highland Park United Methodist Church.

Media Files:

New Moms At Risk: Maternal Mortality In Texas

Wed, 24 Jan 2018 20:33:28 +0000

Maternal mortality rates are on the rise in Texas, and lawmakers and public health officials are trying to figure out why. Marissa Evans joins us to talk about the numbers – which show among other things that black women are disproportionately at risk. Her story “Dangerous Deliveries: Is Texas Doing Enough to Stop Moms from Dying” appears in the Texas Tribune.

Media Files:

Colombia’s Long Road To Recovery

Wed, 24 Jan 2018 20:32:50 +0000

In June of 2017, Colombia’s guerrilla rebels handed over their weapons to the United Nations, ending 50 years of war in the country. Alma Guillermoprieto joins us to talk about where Colombia goes from here. Her story “After Five Decades of Civil War, Colombia’s Healing Begins” appears in National Geographic magazine.

Media Files:

Puerto Rico Was Already Broken: Here’s Why

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 20:49:07 +0000

In September, Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, ringing up an estimated $100 billion in damages. Journalist Petra Bartosiewicz and photographer Christopher Gregory join us to talk about how U.S. policy towards the island almost guarantees that it will never recover from the disaster. Their story “Before the Deluge: How Washington Sealed Puerto Rico’s Fate” appears in Harpers magazine.

Media Files:

Hoaxes And Fake News: Why We Love To Believe

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 20:48:03 +0000

Throughout American history, hucksters have tried to pull a fast one on unsuspecting marks. Kevin Young joins us to talk about how everyone from P.T. Barnum to Edgar Allan Poe helped bring on our post-truth society. His new book is called “Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News” (Graywolf Press).

Media Files:

The Problems With Preschool

Fri, 19 Jan 2018 20:39:00 +0000

Study after study confirms the important role that preschool plays in a student’s academic success. That significance, though, isn’t reflected in preschool teachers’ paychecks. Jeneen Interlandi joins us to talk about this disconnect – her story “Why Are Our Most Important Teachers Paid the Least?” appears in The New York Times magazine.

Media Files:

Borderland Avenger: Creating A Latino Superhero

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 20:34:12 +0000

When undocumented immigrants cross the border into the U.S., they can count on Ignacio Rivera to protect them. He’s the superhero of the “El Peso Hero” comic books. The series is written by North Texas teacher Hector Rodriguez, who joins us to talk about creating a character who seeks justice for those without hope.

Media Files:

Behind The Scenes Of Obama’s Last Year

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 20:33:30 +0000

For U.S. diplomats, 2016 began as a year spent putting the finishing touches on President Obama’s global policies. And when they learned that Hillary Clinton would not be moving into the White House, those same State Department workers began a race against time to lock in their achievements. Their efforts are captured in a documentary called “The Final Year,” and we talk with director Greg Barker about traveling the world with Samantha Power, John Kerry and other key figures.

Media Files:

How To Read A Taco

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 20:32:35 +0000

In 2018, tacos feel as American as hamburgers and apple pie. And in tracing the taco’s path to integration, it’s also possible to study the paths of the people who brought them here. St. John’s University assistant professor Steven Alvarez covers these ideas in a course he teaches called “Taco Literacy,” and he joins us to talk about what can be learned about Mexican immigrants through the food they eat and share.

Media Files:

One Of The Little Rock Nine Remembers

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 20:31:40 +0000

Melba Pattillo Beals became a Civil Rights hero in 1957 when she was one of nine black students who integrated Central High School in Little Rock. She joins us to talk about that day – and about barriers to equality that remain. Her memoir is called “I Will Not Fear: My Story of a Lifetime of Building Faith Under Fire” (Revell).

Media Files:

Where In The World Is God?

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 22:03:33 +0000

For people unsure about religion, the prospect of having to chart a spiritual course for a child can push some future parents to examine their belief systems. That was the case for Anjali Kumar, a lawyer for Google who learned she couldn’t just find her answers online. She joins us to talk about visiting shamans, witches, faith healers and many other figures on her quest for answers, which she writes about in “Stalking God: My Unorthodox Search for Something to Believe In” (Da Capo Press).

Media Files:

Be Good For Goodness’ Sake

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 22:02:48 +0000

Impulse control is a common trait among high achievers. Psychologist David DeSteno joins us to talk about how the use of social emotions factor into our abilities to persevere and make the most of our lives. His new book is called “Emotional Success: The Power of Gratitude, Compassion, and Pride”(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).

Media Files:

Let’s Talk About Race

Mon, 15 Jan 2018 20:37:59 +0000

Productive conversations about race tend to break down into more focused discussions of privilege, police brutality, academic opportunity and other topics. Ijeoma Oluo joins us to talk about those issues and many others. Her new book is called “So You Want to Talk About Race” (Seal Press).

Media Files:

Hooked: Understanding Addiction

Mon, 15 Jan 2018 18:26:24 +0000

Addiction is a part of life that affects nearly every family. This hour on Think, we explore the topic with a former heroin addict, a historian who writes about America’s relationship with alcohol and a neuroscientist who studies the brains of addicts.

Media Files:

Why You’re Probably Not Seeing This Post: The Web After Net Neutrality

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 20:14:46 +0000

In December, the Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal what’s known as net neutrality, meaning the Federal government will no longer regulate the Internet as a utility. Klint Finley of Wired magazine joins us to talk about how the decision will change the way we interact online with businesses – and each other.

Media Files:

Reading Between The Tweets: Covering The White House In The Social Media Age

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 21:27:31 +0000

Each day, producers at CNN, NPR, Fox News and other media outlets wake up and immediately check Twitter to gauge how a tweet from the president might rearrange their days. SMU assistant professor Stephanie A. Martin joins us to talk about how social media has changed the way the media covers the White House. She’s the editor of “Columns to Characters: The Presidency and the Press Enter the Digital Age” (Texas A&M University Press).

Media Files:

The All-Star Scientists Who Defeated The Nazis

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 21:26:34 +0000

In the early days of World War II, Alfred Lee Loomis made a fortune on Wall Street. And with that money, he funded a team of scientists charged with developing radar into a weapon that would defeat the Axis Powers. The story is told in the new American Experience documentary “The Secret of Tuxedo Park,” and director Rob Rapley joins us to talk about the outsized influence these relatively unknown men had on the outcome of the war. The film airs Jan. 16 at 8 on KERA-TV.

Media Files:

When Sex Got Political

Wed, 10 Jan 2018 20:54:56 +0000

About a century ago, liberal Protestants started to disagree with more conservative Christians over issues related to sexuality. R. Marie Griffith, director of the Danforth Center on Religion at Washington University in St. Louis, joins us to talk about how this split set the stage for many of the cultural battles still fought today. Her new book is called “Moral Combat: How Sex Divided American Christians & Fractured American Politics” (Basic Books).

Media Files:

Opening Yourself Up For Trouble: The Untested World Of Medical Devices

Wed, 10 Jan 2018 20:54:21 +0000

One of every 10 Americans is walking around with a pacemaker, artificial knee or some other medical device implanted inside them. And the owners of these pieces of equipment might be horrified to know that they underwent little – if any – clinical trials before being inserted into their new owners. Jeanne Lenzer joins us to talk about the lack of oversight in the industry, which she writes about in “The Danger Within Us: America’s Untested, Unregulated Medical Device Industry and One Man’s Battle to Survive It” (Little, Brown and Company)

Media Files:

A Modern China Through One Family’s Eyes

Tue, 09 Jan 2018 21:33:20 +0000

Scott Tong’s parents fled communist China six decades ago for a new life in the United States. And when Tong was sent to Shanghai to open the “Marketplace” China bureau, it offered him a chance to learn more about what – and who – his parents left behind. Tong joins us to talk about the country’s modernization through the eyes of family members who experienced it, which he writes about in “A Village With My Name: A Family History of China’s Opening to the World” (University of Chicago Press).

Media Files:

Why Your City Can Solve The World’s Problems

Tue, 09 Jan 2018 21:16:48 +0000

As the world becomes increasingly interconnected, cities – not nations – are seeing their power grow. That’s according to Bruce Katz, a global urbanization expert at the Brookings Institution. He joins us to talk about how cities can tackle everything from economic disparity to environmental sustainability, which he and co-author Jeremy Nowak write about in “The New Localism: How Cities Can Thrive in the Age of Populism” (Brookings).

Media Files:

How Social Media Is Revolutionizing The Middle East

Mon, 08 Jan 2018 22:03:36 +0000

Social media networks have been a major driver of change in the Muslim word – facilitating everything from the Arab Spring to ISIS. Haroon K. Ullah, a former advisor to three secretaries of state, joins us to talk about the impact of online networks in the Middle East and elsewhere, which he writes about in “Digital World War: Islamists, Extremists, and the Fight for Cyber Supremacy” (Yale University Press).

Media Files:

Bitcoin And The Digital Currency Revolution

Mon, 08 Jan 2018 21:59:32 +0000

One Bitcoin is currently worth about $15,000. How could something that relatively few people understand become so valuable? Jen Schwartz, an expert on what’s known as blockchain technology, joins us to explain how Bitcoin works and to talk about if it’s here to stay. She edited a special report on digital currency that appears in the January issue of Scientific American magazine.

Media Files:

Our Every Move Is Tracked — And Why We’re OK With That

Fri, 05 Jan 2018 20:19:58 +0000

With our cell phones, computer histories and security cameras, someone out there knows where we are and what we’re doing nearly every minute of the day. UT-Austin American studies professor Randolph Lewis joins guest host Lauren Silverman to talk about the human cost of constant tracking, which he writes about in “Under Surveillance: Being Watched in Modern America” (University of Texas Press).

Media Files:

Jellyfish: A 500-Million-Year Mystery

Thu, 04 Jan 2018 21:19:43 +0000

Jellyfish get a bad rap – they sting us when we’re at the beach, clog power plants and harm fisheries. Still, you’ve got to respect the fact that they’ve navigated our oceans for more than 500 million years. Juli Berwald joins guest host Lauren Silverman to talk about these fascinating creatures and her study of them across the world. Her new book is called “Spineless: The Science of Jellyfish and the Art of Growing a Backbone” (Riverhead Books).

Media Files:

How Britain Ate Its Way Around The Globe

Thu, 04 Jan 2018 21:18:41 +0000

At the height of its power, the sun never set on the British Empire. And that scope turned Britain into a clearinghouse for culture, connecting East and West through its many trade routes. Historian Lizzie Collingham joins guest host Lauren Silverman to talk about the effect these connections had on how food traditions spread across the globe, which she writes about in “The Taste of Empire: How Britain’s Quest for Food Shaped the Modern World” (Basic Books).

Media Files:

You Are What You Eat: Chicken, Antibiotics And The Science Of Food

Wed, 03 Jan 2018 20:55:53 +0000

Chicken is the most consumed meat in the United States – but it wasn’t always that way. Maryn McKenna joins guest host Lauren Silverman to talk about how the increased use of antibiotics transformed chicken from a delicacy into a commodity. She tells the story in “Big Chicken: The Incredible Story of How Antibiotics Created Modern Agriculture and Changed the Way the World Eats” (National Geographic).

Media Files:

How Baylor Pulled Off The Uterus-Transplant Birth

Wed, 03 Jan 2018 20:55:14 +0000

Late last year, a woman gave birth to a baby via a transplanted uterus – the first time that’s ever happened in the U.S. The boy was born at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, and guest host Lauren Silverman talks about how the procedure was pulled off with members of the team who performed it: Dr. Liza Johannesson, an ob-gyn and uterus transplant surgeon at Baylor; and Dr. Giuliano Testa, the leader of the hospital’s uterus transplant clinical trial.

Media Files:

We’re Not As ‘Good’ As We Think We Are

Tue, 02 Jan 2018 20:23:15 +0000

Most of us would like to think we’re decent, good people. Psychological studies, however, reveal that we’re really a mixed bag. Wake Forest philosophy professor Christian Miller joins guest host Lauren Silverman to talk about how we can recognize our flaws and address them. He writes about the idea in “The Character Gap: How Good Are We?” (Oxford University Press).

Media Files:

Unscripted: The Surprising Influence Of Improv

Fri, 22 Dec 2017 20:28:45 +0000

One of the joys of “Saturday Night Live” is the live part – which allows the actors to improvise in the moment. Sam Wasson talks about the role improv has played in America’s comedic identity. His new book is called “Improv Nation: How We Made a Great American Art” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).

Media Files: