Frank Sinatra called Spencer Tracy “The Gray Fox.” Some actors called him “The Pope.” The biographer James Curtis calls Tracy the greatest actor of his generation. Through the years, Tracy’s legacy has faded, eclipsed by that of Katharine Hepburn, one of his great loves. Curtis has written a biography of Tracy that refurbishes his story, detailing his relationship with his wife, Louise, his love affair with Hepburn, his drinking problem and his inimitable acting chops. (Rebroadcast)

Monday, we continue our Through the Lens documentary series with a film about a unique, crafty and effective act of civil disobedience. In 2008, environmental activist Tim DeChristopher made bogus bids for 22,000 acres of federal land up for auction. Some people found his actions inspiring, but after the courts finished with him, he found himself in jail. The film Bidder 70 follows DeChristopher’s growth as an outspoken activist even as the criminal case against him intensified.

In 2000, Daniel Suelo left his life savings, just $30, in a phone booth in Moab and walked away. Twelve years later, he enjoys an apparently full and sane life without money, credit, barter or government hand-outs, fulfilling a vision of the good life inspired by his spiritual guides: Jesus, Buddha and wandering Hindu monks. The writer Mark Sundeen has written a book that traces the path and the singular idea that led Suelo to his extreme lifestyle. Friday, we're rebroadcasting our conversation with Sundeen and Suelo.

Love, An Index

Oct 23, 2012

Three years ago, the award-winning poet Craig Arnold went missing in Japan. Few clues were ever found, leaving his family and his longtime partner, the poet Rebecca Lindenberg, to conclude the worst. Lindenberg has written a new book of poetry, an extended elegy really, to Arnold. As poets, words and conversation united Arnold and Lindenberg, and she says that writing the poems in her new book helped her both continue the conversation and let it go. Tuesday, Lindenberg joins us to talk about her poems and the man they memorialize.

Congressman Ron Paul

Oct 18, 2012

Friday, we're broadcasting our conversation with Ron Paul. The congressman and former presidential candidate joined us yesterday on the campus of Utah Valley University. Paul's dogged adherence to his basic tenet – that government impedes liberty – has garnered him a passionate and diverse following. Ron Paul is currently serving the last of his 24 years in the House and we spoke with him about his philosophy for an ideal society. For Paul, that means as little government as possible.

Pioneer Prophet

Oct 11, 2012

When historian John Turner decided to write a book about Mormonism, it didn't take him long to settle on Brigham Young as his object of study. Turner says that the LDS Church's second leader was a colossal figure not just in American religion, but also in the history of politics and westward expansion.  His new biography reveals a complicated man: blunt, aggressive and sometimes profane, but also charismatic and a fierce protector of his people. Thursday, Turner joins us to talk about the "Pioneer Prophet."

The Guardian Poplar

Oct 4, 2012
KUED Channel 7

When former University of Utah President Chase Peterson began writing his memoir, it was largely to displace panic after a cancer diagnosis. He says his book is not the story of an academician, a scientist or a physician, though Dr. Peterson is all of those things. It's what he calls a "human and spiritual journey," that took him from the American West to New England and home again. Chase Peterson talks with us about the people he has served and the moments that brought his life meaning. (Rebroadcast)

Tuesday on RadioWest we’re talking with legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin about the fraught relationship between America’s highest justice and its commander-in-chief. Toobin says that when Chief Justice Roberts flubbed newly-elected President Obama’s inaugural oath in 2008, a very important relationship got off to a very tense start. Not much has changed in four years. In a new book, Toobin examines the uneasy rapport of two of the world’s most powerful men, both determined to change the course of American history via radically different agendas.

The Sonosopher

Sep 20, 2012

Alex Caldiero is a poet and a performance artist, but he has very different ways of describing himself. He's called himself a "word shaker" and more recently a "sonosopher." Caldiero is the focus of a documentary film released in 2009 called The Sonosopher. It's about his life's journey from Italy to Brooklyn to Orem, Utah, and also about words and sounds as only Caldiero can express them.

A Thousand Voices

Sep 19, 2012

Thursday, Doug is joined by Utah author Jeri Parker for a conversation about her memoir "A Thousand Voices." Parker taught high school and university for many years, but Carlos Louis Salazar is the student she says haunted her dreams. He was 10 when she met him: wild-hearted, a bit of a hellion and without language. Salazar was born deaf, but Parker says he was the one who taught her to hear. We'll talk to her about the compassion she learned from the adventure, confusion and sorrow of his short life.