Culture

Culture, Ideas, Religion

Ghostland

Mar 31, 2017
The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado is said to be haunted, and inspired Stephen King's novel "The Shining." William Andrus, CC via Flickr, http://bit.ly/2e8rrFw

 

Friday, we’re taking a haunted tour of America with writer Colin Dickey. Don’t worry though, we won’t try to convince you that ghosts or the paranormal are necessarily real. Dickey’s new book explores the bigger cultural questions behind these tales. Traveling to haunted mansions, brothels, industrial ruins, parks, and more, he asks why we tell these stories and how they help us make sense of our world. Dickey joins us to talk about what he calls “an American history in haunted places.” (Rebroadcast)

If you see something evil happening, should you be held accountable if you don’t try to stop it? Legal scholar Amos Guiora’s grandparents were murdered in the Holocaust, and a few years ago he set out on a journey to explore how the Nazi atrocities were allowed to happen. He’s now written a book that looks at not only the moral imperative for bystanders, but the legal obligation to act. Wednesday, Guiora joins Doug to explain why he believes not taking action is criminal.

Ken Lund (http://bit.ly/2oayst8) via CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://bit.ly/1dsePQq)

Students at Brigham Young University are required to follow strict moral guidelines known as the Honor Code. Most students at the school are prepared to meet the code’s rigid demands, but some aren’t, says Darron Smith, a former BYU professor. Smith says that many black and/or non-Mormon athletes may not fully anticipate the challenges of the Honor Code, and he argues that they’re disproportionately punished for violating it. He’ll join us Tuesday to discuss what happens when race, religion and sports collide.

Fire, water, air, and earth – these are the classical elements of cooking. According to food journalist Michael Pollan, they help us transform stuff from the natural world into delicious food and drink.  But increasingly, cooking isn't done in the home; it’s done by corporations and restaurants, and that’s disconnecting us from the very idea of food and how we eat it. Pollan joins us Friday to talk about his book Cooked, and to explore how this trend affects our planet, our culture, our food, and our health. (Rebroadcast)

Chris Blakeley (http://bit.ly/2n7rWoC) via CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 (http://bit.ly/OJZNiI)

English professor Christopher Newfield spends a lot of time thinking about public higher education. He’s worried about it. America’s public college system, he says, is in a shambles, with students paying higher tuitions for less learning. The conventional thinking is that public sector practices are to blame, but Newfield argues that the increasing privatization of our universities is the real problem. He joins us Tuesday to explain how we wrecked public universities and how we can fix them.

Morgan Schmorgan (http://bit.ly/2n76yjB) and Stuart Rankin (http://bit.ly/2mEhOkf) via CC BY-NC 2.0 (http://bit.ly/1jNlqZo) (changes made)

Monday, we’re talking about fake news. You’re hearing that term a lot these days, and it’s being applied to all kinds of media, from articles written by Macedonian teenagers to the work of news outlets like CNN. But what is fake news, and maybe more importantly, what isn’t it? Where does it come from and what effects has it had on our culture? We’ll also talk about the efforts to combat fake news and the challenges of getting people to change their minds about stuff they really want to believe is true.

On Trails

Mar 15, 2017
Rich via CC/Flickr, https://goo.gl/uk4xos, https://goo.gl/xYWc9B

 In 2009, while thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail, Robert Moor began to wonder about the paths beneath our feet. On every scale of life on earth, he says, trails form that “reduce an overwhelming array of choices to a single expeditious route.” But how do they form? Why do some paths improve while others disappear? How does order emerge from chaos? Moor joins us to explore how pathways serve as an essential guiding force for trailblazers and trail followers, alike. [Rebroadcast]

American Nations

Mar 14, 2017
Used with permission: Colin Woodard and Tufts University

You don’t need to be a scholar or veteran political observer to see that America is divided, but journalist and historian Colin Woodard says this is really nothing new. Woodard argues that America has always been divided, because we’re actually eleven distinct regional nations, with different cultures and ideas about how the world works. He’ll join us Tuesday to explain the historic roots of these nations, and how that past is still influencing the country today.

William Murphy (http://bit.ly/2lPBwII); CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://bit.ly/1dsePQq)

Tuesday, we’re talking about the rise of the Good Food Movement. It’s an ad hoc cultural crusade that has cropped up across America in the past decade, advocating for good food produced in ways that benefit both the land and the people who grow it. And it’s been successful: local, organic, and natural food is now all the rage. The journalist Naomi Starkman has documented the growth of the Good Food Movement. She’s in Salt Lake this week, and she joins us to discuss how food nourishes the body and soul.

Mein Kampf

Mar 6, 2017

Mein Kampf was Adolf Hitler’s autobiographical manifesto, a kind of campaign biography. He wrote the first draft of it while in prison for leading a failed coup, and historian Peter Ross Range says the book crystallized Hitler’s “faith in himself as Germany’s coming redeemer.” Last year, Mein Kampf was republished in Germany for the first time since WWII. Range joins us Monday to talk about the notorious book’s history, influence, and future. (Rebroadcast)

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