Profiles

Tuesday, we’re talking about the 19th-century women who measured the cosmos. Science journalist Dava Sobel is among our guests. Her latest book is about the women employed by Harvard Observatory to serve as “human computers.” They did calculations based on the observations of their male counterparts, but became astronomical pioneers in their own right. Pygmalion Theatre Company is staging a play based on the life of one of these remarkable women, which gives us an excuse to talk about them and discoveries.

Eleanor and Hick

Apr 14, 2017

Friday, we’re telling the story of the unconventional relationship that deeply influenced Eleanor Roosevelt. When FDR entered the White House in 1932, Eleanor feared her independent life would take a back seat to the ceremonial role of first lady. But on the campaign trail she had met Lorena Hickok, a feisty reporter who would become her adviser, confidante, and lover. Biographer Susan Quinn joins Doug to explain how Eleanor and “Hick” used their bond to better depression-ravaged America. (Rebroadcast)

North Star International, Voices of Hope Project, http://bit.ly/2o08ydI

Monday, we’re talking about the delicate balance of being religiously conservative and attracted to the same sex. Ty Mansfield is a family therapist and he’s attracted to men. He’s also married to a woman, has kids, and is a faithful Mormon. Mansfield believes that human sexuality is fluid enough for some gay people - not all - but some to be perfectly happy married to someone of the opposite sex. Mansfield joins us to share his own story, and to talk about what he’s learning about sexuality and happiness.

The Zookeeper's Wife

Mar 27, 2017
from "The Zookeeper's Wife," Focus Features

Monday, the acclaimed naturalist and writer Diane Ackerman talks about the story she uncovered of Jan and Antonina Zabinski, a zookeeper and his wife. The couple ran the Warsaw Zoo during the brutal Nazi occupation of World War II, and they were able to save more than 300 people destined to be exterminated by the Nazis. Ackerman’s book has been made into a film, so we’re rebroadcasting our conversation with her about the role of nature in kindness and savagery. (Rebroadcast)

The Immortal Irishman

Mar 17, 2017

Friday, journalist Timothy Egan joins us to tell the story of Irish revolutionary Thomas Francis Meagher. Egan first encountered Meagher as a statue on the Montana Capitol grounds, but tracing his life took Egan from the brutal occupation of Ireland and the famine which killed a million people, to the fields of America’s civil war and to the American frontier. We’ll talk about Meagher’s transformation from romantic to rebel to leader, and what it reveals about the journey. (Rebroadcast)

Gage Skidmore (cropped; http://bit.ly/2mgrjqD) via CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://bit.ly/1dsePQq)

Late last week, Congressman Ryan Zinke of Montana took the job of Secretary of the Department of the Interior. As the administrator of roughly a fifth of America’s land, his influence will be widely felt, especially in the West. But who is he? And where does he stand on important issues like state control of public lands, or on the contentious designation of national monuments? Utah Congressman Rob Bishop will be among our guests Wednesday as we examine Zinke’s appointment and what it means for Utah.

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)

Courtesy Hachette Books

Thursday, Doug’s guest is long-time LGBT activist Cleve Jones. In the early 1970s he and thousands of young gay people were drawn to San Francisco where they were able to find refuge and community. As a protégé of Harvey Milk, Jones became part of the movement he says saved his life twice: once as a teenager who felt like “the only queer in the world,” and again when his body was devastated by AIDS. Jones is coming to Utah, and joins Doug to talk about his life in the LGBT movement.

Downwind

Feb 3, 2017

Friday, we’re talking about the effects of nuclear weapons on people who lived near uranium mines and downwind from testing sites during and after the Cold War. Historian Sarah Alisabeth Fox says that all wars happen where people live, grow their food and raise their children. So to understand what happened, she talked to ranchers, farmers, and housewives who suffered from cancer and economic ruin. Her book is called "Downwind: A People’s History of the Nuclear West.” (Rebroadcast)

Courtesy of Sundance Institute | photo by David Peterson

Monday, Doug is joined by filmmaker Laura Dunn, whose new documentary looks at rural America through the eyes of the writer, farmer, and activist Wendell Berry. The film's title comes from Berry’s daughter, who says that as a child her father would challenge her to notice things, to pay attention. He told her to “Look and See.” So that's what Dunn does. She weaves Wendell Berry’s own observations with those of family and neighbors for a deep look at the industrial and economic changes in agrarian life.

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