Culture

Culture, Ideas, Religion

Trapped

Oct 21, 2016

Abortion may be legal in America, but conservative legislatures have been working for years to pass laws that restrict women’s access to it. Hundreds of those laws have been enacted this decade, and they’ve forced many abortion clinics to close their doors. In a new documentary, filmmaker Dawn Porter tells the stories of clinic workers and lawyers fighting the restrictions designed to regulate abortion out of existence. Porter’s film is called Trapped, and she joins us Friday to talk about it. (Rebroadcast)

The psychologist Alison Gopnik is worried about modern day parenting, including her own. It’s too much like being a carpenter, she says, where you shape chosen materials into a final, preconceived product. Kids don’t work like that. In a new book, Gopnik suggests parents think less like carpenters and more like gardeners: creating safe, nurturing spaces in which children can flourish. Gopnik joins us Wednesday to discuss how we can raise better kids by changing our approach to parenting.

Hooligan Sparrow

Oct 14, 2016

Friday, we're talking about a thrilling exploration of the power of protest and the efforts to contain it. Filmmaker Nanfu Wang will join us to talk about her documentary film Hooligan Sparrow, which follows the efforts of activist Ye Haiyan as she and fellow protestors work to shed light on sexual exploitation in China. They’re marked as enemies of the state and routinely harassed by thugs, and the web of trouble also threatens Wang’s film, not to mention her personal safety. (Rebroadcast)

Jerry Rapier

There was a time when adoptions were a source of shame for a birth mother, and weren’t discussed in the adoptive family. But that slowly changed with birth control, a demographic shift in babies available for adoption, and the “adoption rights movement.” Today, 95% of infants in the U.S. are placed in “open adoptions” where the birth mother and the family have some sort of contact. Thursday, we’re talking about how adoption has changed over time, and what it means for children and families.

Photo by Ellen Jaskol, www.ellenjaskol.com

In his book Three Cups of Tea, mountaineer Greg Mortenson details his humanitarian efforts to build schools in Pakistan. His story brought him worldwide acclaim and sold lots of books. There’s just one problem, says the writer Jon Krakauer: Mortenson’s story is a lie. Krakauer has written at length about holes he’s found in Mortenson’s tale, allegations the journalist Jennifer Jordan pushes back against in a new documentary film. Jordan and Krakauer join us Monday to discuss the controversy over Three Cups of Tea.

A few years ago, as the debate raged over the so-called Ground Zero Mosque, religion scholar Stephen Prothero watched and wondered what all the fuss was about. Hoping to better understand our current culture wars, he began researching similar clashes in America’s past, and he arrived at a provocative conclusion. Conservatives, Prothero says, almost always start the culture wars, and, equally often, liberals end up winning. Thursday, we’ll talk to Prothero about America’s long history of moral and religious battles and why liberals win.

Of the major U.S. religions, the LDS Church is the only one whose top leader serves until he dies. That wasn’t an issue in the 19th century when medicine rarely prolonged life after a serious illness. But today, researcher Gregory Prince says that as Church presidents live longer, they’re more likely to experience age-related conditions like dementia. It’s something he explores in a forthcoming article, and Tuesday, he joins us to explain what this “gerontocracy” means for the future of Mormonism.

Greg Westfall (cropped), via CC/Flickr, https://goo.gl/GWoald

For years, Daniel Kunitz lived the life of the mind. His body though “became a trash depot.” Then he started running, which led to swimming, weightlifting, and eventually CrossFit. His health and his life steadily improved. Kunitz’s personal quest got him wondering how fitness culture has changed through the years. Why were the Greeks so buff? Why do guys do dumbbell curls? How have women changed exercise as we know it? Kunitz joins us to share what he’s learned about the evolution of fitness. (Rebroadcast)

Diego Franssens/Knack, with permission from Mikael Colville-Andersen, http://tinyurl.com/zhw5r3n

 

Making it easy for people to get from Point A to Point B is a big concern in urban areas. Here in Utah most people simply drive. Urban designer Mikael Colville-Andersen wants that to change. He wants more people to bike and walk, not for their health, but because they’re the easiest ways to get around. They aren’t, yet, but Colville-Andersen wants to change that, too. He joins us Thursday to discuss how better designed cities can make it effortless for people to get from here to there without driving. (Rebroadcast)

During World War II, 8,000 German prisoners of war were interned in Utah. Many of them worked alongside American civilians on the state’s farms and factories, where unlikely friendships and lasting memories were created between sworn enemies. In a new documentary film, filmmaker Scott Porter explores this little-known chapter in Utah history, the end of which was marked by a tragic massacre in the rural town of Salina. Porter joins us Tuesday to talk about his film. It’s called Splinters of a Nation.

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