Friday's Show

Vszybala via CC/Flickr, http://bit.ly/2fCvqsa

The Lion in the Living Room

Lions were once feared as the king of jungle. But their influence on the world and in nature now pales in comparison to the diminutive, purring, and demanding house cat. In her book, the journalist Abigail Tucker, investigates the natural and cultural history of house cats. Despite their ubiquity in modern life, she says, we know very little about what cats are, how they came to live among us, and why we love these furry freeloaders. Tucker joins us Friday to talk about the lions in our living rooms. (Rebroadcast)

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The Revenge of Analog

Feb 23, 2017
Roco Julie (no changes; http://bit.ly/2lH52E2) (CC BY-SA 2.0, http://bit.ly/1hYHpKw)

A funny thing happened on the way to digital utopia: we rekindled our love affairs with the very analog goods and ideas that tech gurus insisted we no longer needed. What once looked outdated—stuff like paper notebooks, LP records, and board games—is cool again, breathing new life into many businesses that deal in tangible things. The writer David Sax calls this trend the “Revenge of Analog.” In a new book, he explores the real things renaissance, and he’ll join us Thursday to talk about it.

Phillip Massey, KUER

BYU political scientist Jessica Preece says the rallies we’ve seen since President Donald Trump took office aren’t typical for Utah. There’s been the Women’s March, the March for Refugees, and Senator Jason Chaffetz’s town hall was filled to capacity with over 1000 turned away. Wednesday, we’re talking about political action in Utah and we hope to hear from you. Are you getting more involved? How are you making yourself heard? What type of political engagement do you think will make a difference?

Wayne Miller

Tuesday, we’re talking about the life of poet and activist Maya Angelou. A documentary airing on PBS' American Masters tells the story of Angelou’s journey past racism and abuse to become one of our greatest voices. But filmmaker Rita Coburn Whack says she didn’t want this film to be just about what Angelou did in her life, but also about who she was and how she loved. Whack and co-director Bob Hercules join Doug to explain how Maya Angelou’s story gives us a sense of who we all are as Americans. (Rebroadcast)

Washington's Farewell

Feb 20, 2017

When George Washington left office he delivered a prophetic farewell address. Once revered as civic scripture, it is now almost forgotten. In it, Washington called for unity among “citizens by birth or choice,” defended religious pluralism, and proposed that education is essential to democracy. He also expressed fear that hyper-partisanship, excessive debt, and foreign wars could destroy the country.  Journalist John Avlon has written a book about Washington’s Farewell, and he joins us Monday to talk about it.

Courtesy Plan-B Theatre Company

Hildegard of Bingen was a 12th century abbess, composer, healer, and visionary. Everyone from the Pope to the lowliest novitiate believed she was in direct communication with God. But mid-life, Hildegard's visions changed, and some historians believe it was because she fell in love with another woman. The story is the basis of Utah playwright Tim Slover’s latest work, and Friday, we’re talking about this fascinating woman, and the search for balance between spirituality and the gift of love.

Brandy Shaul (straightened), https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/

The 2017 Utah Legislative session has officially passed the halfway mark, and Thursday we’re examining all the action so far on Capitol Hill. The fight over the Bears Ears National Monument continues, with a house resolution calling for its demise, to the dismay of outdoor retailers. Legislators are weighing tax increases. Education funding is once again a hot topic, as is the future of the “Zion Curtain,” and. A panel of guests joins us to discuss all of that and more.

The Story of Pain

Feb 15, 2017

What is pain? You know it when you feel it, but it’s almost impossible to properly describe. And it turns out, our idea of what that suffering is and means has changed significantly over the centuries. Wednesday, Doug’s guest is British historian Joanna Bourke, who has written a book that investigates “The Story of Pain.” We’ll explore how knowing the history of pain helps us acknowledge our own sorrows and the suffering of others.

Ruby Ridge

Feb 14, 2017
PBS/American Experience, Courtesy of Dave Hunt

In August 1992, a tense and disastrous event took place at Ruby Ridge in northern Idaho. The family of Randy Weaver had been holed up for months with a cache of firearms at their mountaintop home. He was wanted for a federal offense, and when U.S. Marshals surveilling the property crossed paths with the Weavers, a firefight broke out. The ensuing standoff mesmerized the country and inflamed anti-government sentiment. Tuesday, we’re talking about what happened at Ruby Ridge and its resonance today.

The Nature Fix

Feb 13, 2017
Mark Stevens via CC BY-NC-SA 2.0/Flickr http://bit.ly/1hYHpKw

Monday, we’re talking about the restorative power of nature. For centuries, great minds like Beethoven, Tesla, and Einstein have extolled the benefits of the outdoors. But these days, our lives are increasingly lived indoors and onscreen. Wondering if we could all use some more exposure to the natural world, the writer Florence Williams set out to explore the science of “our deep, cranial connection to natural landscapes.” She’ll join us to discuss how nature can make us healthier, happier, and more creative.

The Sting of the Wild

Feb 10, 2017
Sarah Zuckoff (resized) via Flickr/CC, https://goo.gl/d5NiVm, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0

Entomologist Justin O. Schmidt is on a mission. Some say it’s a brave exploration, others shake their heads in disbelief. His goal: to catalogue the painful effects of stinging insects on humans, mainly using himself as the gauge. Most people regard stinging insects as horrible pests, but by investigating their lifestyles and adaptations, Schmidt hopes to spread his passion for the inherently interesting story every animal on earth has to tell. Schmidt joins us to explore the world of stinging insects. (Rebroadcast)

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Monday's Show

Through the Lens: Cameraperson

Kirsten Johnson’s 25-year career as a documentary film cinematographer has taken her around the world, often to regions of conflict. Her own film, Cameraperson , is a memoir of her life’s work assembled from a collage of cutting-room-floor footage. It’s also a keen examination of the dilemmas and blind spots that riddle documentary filmmaking. Johnson joins us Monday as we continue our Through the Lens series on documentary film with an exploration of what it’s like to be behind the camera.

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Utah Profiles

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Listen weekdays at 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. MT on KUER 90.1