Episode Archives

vinyl is back
Original Air Date:

April 09, 2017

Maybe it’s nostalgia. Maybe it’s something more. But analog is back in style.Read more

Wendell Berry
Original Air Date:

April 06, 2017

An unlikely hero for TV's "Ron Swanson."Read more

Writing poems
Original Air Date:

April 02, 2017

In this hour, we see how poetry can show us new ways to think about place and personal identity.Read more

Vietnamese refugees
Original Air Date:

March 30, 2017

Quan Barry is writing a new poem each week in response to current events.Read more

Protester
Original Air Date:

March 26, 2017

Wherever you turn, it seems like someone’s angry — on Facebook and cable news, in street marches and congressional town halls. It would seem that we’ve entered a new era of increased hostility. But how did we, as a nation, get here?Read more

Women in STEM
Original Air Date:

March 23, 2017

Emily Temple-Wood has been an avid Wikipedia editor since she was pretty young.  And early on, she noticed that Wikipedia has a serious gender bias problem, so she began recruiting more women editors to write more Wikipedia articles about notable women.  And in return she got… rape and...Read more

Glitch lady
Original Air Date:

March 19, 2017

Why do women have to put up with this? And how do they fight back?Read more

jet engine
Original Air Date:

March 16, 2017

We talk to two experts who think about the role empathy can play in tackling big problems.Read more

The Majestic Theater in Madison
Original Air Date:

February 26, 2017

What can science reveal about lust, romance, and compassion?Read more

People on an island
Original Air Date:

February 24, 2017

Forty years ago Richard Dawkins wrote the landmark book “The Selfish Gene,” where he argued that the gene is what drives evolution. But what if he got it all wrong?Read more

RR cafe sign
Original Air Date:

February 19, 2017

In this show, we explore storyworlds — the fictional universes that continue to enchant us.  Like the ghostly supernatural realm in which Abe Lincoln’s dead son, Willie, finds himself and the surreal Pacific Northwest town of Twin Peaks, the home of some damn fine coffee.Read more

Apple on the tree of knowledge
Original Air Date:

February 05, 2017

A garden, a tree, an apple and a serpent. The story of Adam and Eve is as old as sin. But it’s a lot more than a Bible story.Read more

Original Air Date:

January 22, 2017

How do you cope with unpleasant people? We consider the adage “hell is other people.”Read more

running is pointless
Original Air Date:

January 19, 2017

Every generation has one or two critics with an unparalleled ability to capture the cultural moment they’re living in. Now, that critic may be Mark Greif. He’s one of the founders of the literary magazine n+1, who’s just come out with a new essay collection, “Against Everything.” In this...Read more

Machines
Original Air Date:

January 15, 2017

Computer scientists are closing in on the next frontier in artificial intelligence — machines that can create. Make art. Write stories. Compose music. The dream is to open the door to a whole new kind of creativity. Read more

Chicago skyline
Original Air Date:

January 12, 2017

Charles Monroe-Kane talks to David Nagler about adapting Carl Sandburg's poems to music. Read more

A huddle
Original Air Date:

January 08, 2017

Be strong, be tough, don’t cry – boys are bombarded with messages about being a man and the “male code” their whole lives. It's second nature, and also toxic. Read more

TTBOOK
Original Air Date:

December 18, 2016

It's December and time again for the annual media ritual — the best of list. We're sharing the best of the best of To the Best of Our Knowledge. 2016, the year in interviews.Read more

Shirley Jackson
Original Air Date:

December 11, 2016

On the centennial of Shirley Jackson's birth, we explore the great literary work that she left for us — the stories and novels that continue to resonate in our culture.Read more

Freeman Dyson
Original Air Date:

December 08, 2016

You get the sense that Freeman Dyson has seen everything. He's a legendary physicist who's had a front row seat on scientific breakthroughs for the past century. Read more

home
Original Air Date:

December 04, 2016

We’re living through a period of mass human migration, with people on the move all over the planet. What does it take to take an unfamiliar place and make it yours?Read more

Playing jazz
Original Air Date:

November 27, 2016

There's a new kind of music packing nightclubs with young fans. It's jazz — but not the sound of your grandparents' supper club. Infused with hip hop and other popular musical forms, jazz is being remade.Read more

CC BY-SA 2.0
Original Air Date:

November 20, 2016

Hip hop created a sound that changed music, art, fashion, and politics. What's next? Diplomacy? Journalism? Education? Philosophy?Read more

TTBOOK
Original Air Date:

November 13, 2016

How does it feel to know that the commodity everyone wants is inside your skull?  This hour, we focus our attention — on attention. Read more

Ballot box and stickers
Original Air Date:

October 30, 2016

How do we put the fairness and the fun back in American elections? In this hour, we present a few simple ideas for how to remake the electoral process.Read more

Typewriter
Original Air Date:

October 23, 2016

Psychologists say telling a good life story can make you happier. But do we also create an inauthentic version of ourselves if we turn everything into a narrative?Read more

time travel clock
Original Air Date:

October 09, 2016

This hour, we explore our obsession with time travel. Why is such a recurring them in movies and TV shows? And what can time travel teach us about ourselves?Read more

Elephant
Original Air Date:

September 03, 2016

Can we ever get inside the mind of an animal? Can we really know how a chimp or a parrot thinks and experiences the world?Read more

Actress with long tongue
Original Air Date:

August 28, 2016

We delve into the new science of revulsion.Read more

Candles
Original Air Date:

July 16, 2016

When suicide bombers blow up crowded marketplaces, or a lone shooter attacks a nightclub, one question we’re always left with is why. This hour, a look at the underlying psychology of political violence.Read more

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