Friday's Show

A Conversation with Alexandra Fuller

These days, the writer Alexandra Fuller lives in a yurt in Jackson Hole. It’s a far cry from where she grew up: under the cloud of civil war in what was once called Rhodesia in southern Africa. Fuller has chronicled her life in a series of acclaimed memoirs, writing fearlessly about war, family, and the collapse of her decades-long marriage. Her newest book is a novel about two Native American cousins on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. She joins us to talk about her life, her work, and how they overlap. (Rebroadcast)

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Thursday, we’re talking about Martin Luther. In the 16th century, he ignited a movement to rethink the traditions and beliefs of Christianity. He came to be seen as a heretic or revolutionary, but the historian Craig Harline said Luther never set out to be either of those things. He began as a cranky friar who obsessed about the fate of his soul. He went looking for answers, and when he found them, refused to keep his mouth shut. Harline has just written a new book called A World Ablaze.

 

Is there anybody out there? Is there life on other planets? If the answer is yes, and we can prove it, the physicist Jim Al-Khalili says that would be a revolutionary moment in science, up there with Copernicus proving that Earth is not the center of the universe. Considering the vastness of space, scientists mostly agree that somebody or something else is out there. Al-Khalili joins us Wednesday to explore where that life might be, what it might be like, and what would happen if we found it—or it found us. (Rebroadcast)

Kelsie Moore / KUER

Years ago, Tom Christofferson asked to be excommunicated from the LDS Church. He says he couldn’t figure out how to be Mormon and gay, so, he aimed at being happy and gay. And he was. He had a man he loved, and his family - including Mormon apostle D. Todd Christofferson - made them both welcome. But he still wasn’t fulfilled. So Tom Christofferson left his partner and returned to his church. He’s written a memoir and joins us Tuesday to talk about reconciling his sexuality with his faith.

The first Monday in October marks a new term for the U.S. Supreme Court, and we’ve got University of Utah legal scholars Amy Wildermuth and RonNell Andersen Jones in studio. We’ll talk about the dynamics of the bench and the effect of President Trump’s appointment Neil Gorsuch. We’ll also break down some of the cases that are on the docket like gerrymandering, cake baking, and cell phone privacy. We'll also throw in a few procedural questions for you SCOTUS nerds.

Greg Pye via Flickr (http://bit.ly/2mF1RKs) CC2.0 (http://bit.ly/1mhaR6e)

Friday, we’re talking about the value of rest. Of taking a break. From everything. For most of us, overwork is the new normal and rest is an afterthought. But the scholar Alex Soojung-Kim Pang says that by dismissing the importance of rest in our lives we stifle our ability to think creatively and truly recharge. Pang will join us to talk about why long walks, afternoon naps, vigorous exercise, and "deep play" stimulate creative work and sustain creative lives. (Rebroadcast)

Aj Schuster via Flickr (http://bit.ly/2wWX241), CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 (http://bit.ly/ccbynca2), remixed

The devastation wrought in Mexico City by a recent massive earthquake may have rattled more than a few nerves along the Wasatch Front. Salt Lake City is, of course, overdue for a significant seismic event. So are other places in the United States, such as Los Angeles, the Pacific Northwest, even New York City. In a new book, science writer Kathryn Miles tours the country in search of the latest research on America’s next big earthquake and what’s being done to address the threat. She joins us Wednesday to talk about it.

Woolly

Sep 27, 2017

What if you could take the DNA of an ancient creature and bring it back to life? It sounds like the plot of Jurassic Park, but you can’t actually rebuild a dinosaur. You could to it with a woolly mammoth though. The writer Ben Mezrich has a new book about the scientists and researchers who are working to insert DNA from a mammoth hair sample into an elephant embryo. Wednesday, he joins Doug to tell the story, and to explain how the results could actually help save the world.

Gage Skidmore via Flickr (http://bit.ly/2yCgh4N), CC-BY-SA 2.0 (http://bit.ly/1dsePQq)

When he speaks at universities across the country, conservative pundit Ben Shapiro draws fierce opposition for his strongly held opinions. He despises identity politics, opposes the ideas of safe spaces and microaggressions, and rejects the concept of white male privilege. He relishes attacking liberals, but has himself been targeted by the alt-right. Shapiro is speaking at the University of Utah this week, and he joins us Tuesday to discuss his thinking on society and politics.

Monday, we’re talking about the complicated relationship between the Mormon Church and homosexuality. Our guest is historian Gregory Prince who is working on a history that includes the public and not-so-public campaigns against same-sex marriage and their attempt at punishing and curing same-sex attraction. He also examines whether the LDS theology of an afterlife will ever have room for gay people. Prince is coming to Utah, and joins us to talk about Mormons and Gays.

For more than four decades, one of America's most astonishing whodunits has gone unsolved. "D.B. Cooper" was on a flight from Portland to Seattle when he handed over a bomb threat. The airline gave him $200,000 and the hijacker parachuted from the plane, never to be seen again. Cooper evaded one of the most extensive manhunts of the 20th century and has become the stuff of legend. Investigative journalist Geoffrey Gray joins Doug to separate myth from fact in the case of D.B. Cooper. (Rebroadcast)

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