On the Radio

Week of August 31, 2014

Urban Cultures

08.31.2014

With hundreds of millions of people moving into cities, we're wondering what shapes urban cultures. In this hour, Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk talks about how Istanbul shaped his writing. One historian argues that early liberal philosophies from Amsterdam shaped the United States. And we check in on cultural change as Shanghai - already the biggest city in China - grows.

Producer(s): 
  1. Istanbul with Orhan Pamuk

    Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk says that Istanbul "made him." So when he sat down to write his memoirs, the city was at the heart of the collection.

    5
    Average: 5 (1 vote)
  2. New York via Amsterdam

    You know that the first settlers called Manhattan "New Amsterdam"? But the Dutch didn't just bring their sailing prowess and placenames with them. Russell Shorto thinks that liberal Dutch ideas about politics and society came too, and shaped the New World.

    5
    Average: 5 (1 vote)
  3. Unruly Places

    “Memories instilled in old places do seem to be one of the enemies of people who want to impose an ideology,” says geographer Alastair Bonnett. In Unruly Places, he says if you want a dynamic culture, change the way you see your town. 

    5
    Average: 5 (1 vote)
  4. Shanghai, Growing

    There's a great urbanization afoot in China. The government plans to move more than 100 million people into cities by 2020. But there's an old divide between rural and urban citizens. What happens when they become neighbors?

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    No votes yet
  5. Dangerous Idea: Breaking Up America

    Novelist Stephan Eirik Clark's Dangerous Idea? Subdivide the United States into smaller countries.

    5
    Average: 5 (2 votes)
  6. On Our Minds: Talking About Racism

    Since Michael Brown was shot, there's a new round of calls for a national conversation about racism. Is that realistic? Are we ready for what we might hear? A couple of years ago, NPR's Michele Norris told us about how a family secret sparked difficult conversations.

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    No votes yet

Across the Universe (R)

08.31.2014

Where do you find crazy ideas and some of the world's smartest people? In theoretical physics - the world of parallel universes, super strings and black holes.  We go on a whirlwind tour of the universe - from the multiverse to an imaginary walk on Mars.

Producer(s): 
  1. Mathematical Universe - Max Tegmark

    Is mathematics what's most real in the universe?  MIT physicist Max Tegmark thinks so, and he says it's likely we live in one of many parallel universes.

    4.285715
    Average: 4.3 (7 votes)
  2. Copernicus - Dava Sobel

    Contemplating the multiverse is mind-blowing, but if you want a truly earth-shattering controversy in physics, you have to go back 500 years to Copernicus' radical theory.  Dava Sobel tells his story.

    4
    Average: 4 (6 votes)
  3. Sonic Sidebar: Cosmic Wonder

    When he was 9, Neil deGrasse Tyson fell in love with astrophysics during his first visit to a planetarium. He was, literally, star-struck, and now runs the Hayden Planetarium.

    4.857145
    Average: 4.9 (7 votes)
  4. Walking on Mars - Craig Childs

    What would it be like to walk on Mars?  Nature writer Craig Childs thinks it would be like trekking in some of Earth's most forbidding environments - deserts and Arctic ice fields.

    4.857145
    Average: 4.9 (7 votes)
  5. BookMark: Kat Duff

    Kat Duff recommends "Awakening Osiris: The Egyptian Book of the Dead," translated by Normandi Ellis.

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    No votes yet
  6. On Our Minds: Lorrie Moore

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    Lorrie Moore has a new collection of short stories. She tells Steve Paulson that life is filled with absurdity; ghost stories are great fodder for fiction; and North America now owns the short story.

    3
    Average: 3 (3 votes)