Friday's Show

Photo by Karl Hugh. Copyright Utah Shakespeare Festival 2016

Much Ado About Shakespeare's Women

Utah Shakespeare Festival is performing Much Ado About Nothing, and we’re using it as an excuse to talk about Shakespeare’s women. Scholar Kate McPherson says few Elizabethan playwrights created female characters as rich as the Bard, and that Much Ado is his most sophisticated play about women. It features Beatrice, a feisty and fearless lady who has forsworn love. McPherson, actor Kim Martin-Cotten, and director David Ivers join us to talk about Beatrice and the challenges and opportunities afforded women in Shakespeare’s world.
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Custer's Trials

Jul 28, 2016

Even in his lifetime, George Armstrong Custer was controversial. He was ambitious and flamboyant as well as courageous and talented. Though largely remembered for his death at the Little Bighorn, T.J. Stiles' paints a fuller picture of Custer's colorful and complicated life. Stiles says Custer lived at a “frontier in time.” He helped usher in the modern American era, but couldn't quite adapt to the modernity he helped create. Stiles joins us Thursday to talk about his book "Custer's Trials." (Rebroadcast)

woodleywonderworks via <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC</a>/<a href="http://bit.ly/246ypvp">Flickr</a>, cropped

A few years ago, Paul Tough wrote a book about new research showing that character traits like grit, self-control, and optimism are critical to a child’s success. Tough’s latest book builds on that research by explaining how to put it into practice. He argues that a child’s home and school environments are the principle barriers to his or her success. Improve the environment, Tough says, and you can improve the child. He joins us Wednesday to explain his theory of helping children succeed. (Rebroadcast)

Why Men Fight

Jul 26, 2016
Gilberto Tadday

When a mixed martial arts studio moved in across the street from literary scholar Jonathan Gottschall’s office, the timing couldn’t have been better. Gottschall was in a mid-life crisis; he was out of shape and his academic career was stalling. So joining the gym was personal, but he was also fascinated by these questions: Why do men fight and why do we like to watch? Tuesday, Gottschall joins Doug to talk about his experience in the cage, and about violence and the rituals that contain it. (Rebroadcast)

Monday, we're joined by University of Utah professor Paul Reeve to talk about his book Religion of a Different Color. In it, he explores how America's Protestant white majority characterized Mormons as racial outsiders in the 19th century. Protestants were convinced that members of the country's newest religion were not merely a theological departure from the mainstream, they were racially and physically different. Medical doctors even supported the claim. Reeve says the LDS church responded to those attacks with aspirations for whiteness that may have been a little too successful. (Rebroadcast)

(public domain)

At one time, Rome was just an insignificant village in central Italy. At its height, it was, as renowned classicist Mary Beard points out, a sprawling imperial metropolis of more than a million people that served as the capital for a vast empire. Beard says ancient Rome is important because it underpins Western culture and politics, and in a new book she chronicles how the Republic grew, persisted, and declined by exploring how the Romans thought of themselves. She joins us Thursday to talk about it. (Rebroadcast)

Journalist Lesley Hazleton says that if you want to understand headlines from the Middle East today, you have to understand the story of Islam’s first civil war. When the prophet Muhammad died, factions in the young faith became embroiled in a succession crisis. The power grabs, violence, and political machinations resulted in the schism between Sunni and Shia. Hazleton joins Doug to tell the story of Islam’s sectarian divide and to explain how that history influences current events. [Rebroadcast]

Where does genius come from? Some people say geniuses are born, or that they’re made by thousands of hours of work. But what if genius is actually grown, like a plant? Travel writer Eric Weiner has scanned the globe and come to exactly that conclusion. He says genius arises in clumps at particular places and times when certain ingredients are present. Think Ancient Greece, 14th-century Florence, or modern-day Silicon Valley. Weiner joins us Tuesday to explain his theory of the geography of genius. [Rebroadcast]

Taber Andrew Bain via CC/Flickr, http://bit.ly/1SVrd1W

In a new book, legal scholar Mehrsa Baradaran argues that America has two systems for personal banking. The rich have personal bank accounts at brick-and-mortar businesses, while the poor either don’t bank at all or rely on payday lenders and check cashers that charge exorbitant rates and fees. The result, Baradaran says, is a sadly ironic situation where “the less money you have, the more you pay to use it.” She joins us Monday to explain how we got into this mess, and how we might get out of it. [Rebroadcast]

Meet Me in Atlantis

Jul 15, 2016

Around 360 BC, the Greek philosopher Plato wrote about a marvelous city that disappeared millennia earlier. Atlantis is one of the world’s great unsolved mysteries, despite the efforts of scholars, amateur sleuths, psychics, and conspiracy theorists. The journalist Mark Adams went on his own quest - not to find Atlantis itself, but to understand the people searching for it. Friday, he joins us to talk about the sunken city and the place it holds in our imagination. [Rebroadcast]

The Mormon Jesus

Jul 14, 2016

Did you know that in the 1850s some Mormons argued that Jesus was married and had children? Or that even today, there’s LDS theology around Jesus Christ that leads Evangelicals to say The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints isn’t really Christian? Thursday, scholar John Turner is Doug’s guest. He’s written a book called The Mormon Jesus and he joins us to discuss how the LDS concept of Jesus Christ has changed over time, and what it reveals about Mormonism in American religious life.

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Utah Profiles

Utah is full of characters that make our state a vibrant home. Here's a collection of conversations we've had with some of these passionate and thoughtful people.

Local Music Series

There's a young vibrant music scene in Utah. RadioWest brings some of the newest and best bands into the studio to talk about and to play their music live.

VideoWest

Gerda: Downhill From There

Gerda Saunders has progressive dementia. We followed her to her doctor's office, where she had her latest memory evaluation. The results have given her a sense of urgency, and oddly, relief.

Calendar of Events

Heard it on RadioWest

RadioWest interviews many guests who have events in and around the state or in cyberspace. Trying to plan your month? Here's your guide to the lectures, screenings and other happenings you've heard on the show.
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LDS Topics

Conversations on LDS faith, history and culture

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Listen weekdays at 11:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. MT on KUER 90.1. Join us at 801-585-WEST or radiowest@kuer.org