To The Best Of Our Knowledge
Summary: To The Best Of Our Knowledge is a nationally-syndicated, Peabody award-winning public radio show that dives headlong into the deeper end of ideas. We have conversations with novelists and poets, scientists and software engineers, journalists and historians, filmmakers and philosophers, artists and activists — people with big ideas and a passion to share them. For more from the TTBOOK team, visit us at ttbook.org.
Restaurants, bars, coffee shops — is there any public place left that doesn’t play background music? Loudly? In this show, we’re making the case for more silence. Because perhaps some need the drone of TVs, traffic and Muzak, to drown out the pesky sound of thinking, but others go to great lengths to find respite from a blaringly loud world. Original Air Date: December 09, 2017 Guests: Erling Kagge — Gordon Hempton — George Michelsen Foy — Kyle Gann — Shawn Wen — Jennifer Egan Interviews In This Hour: The Contemplative Silence Of A Cold, Lonely Journey — A Nature Preserve For The Quiet Of Nature — The Volume Of Absolute Silence — The Tale of a Mute Piano Performance — A Silent Soliloquy From The World's Greatest Mime — The Pauses Between Chords of Iconic Rock and Roll Further Reading: One Square Inch of Silence, from the documentary "Soundtracker"
Are there new ways to treat depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder? We explore some unconventional treatments for mental illness, including exercise, psychedelics and even horror films. Need to talk? Contact the National Alliance for Mental Illness at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264). If you or someone you know may be considering suicide, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (En Español: 1-888-628-9454; Deaf and Hard of Hearing: 1-800-799-4889) or the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741. Original Air Date: February 15, 2020 **Guests: ** Eliza Smith — Claudia Reardon — Shira Erlichman — Rosalind Watts — Charles Raison — Roland Griffiths — Robin Carhart-Harris **Interviews In This Hour: ** Treating Anxiety With Horror Films — Do 10 Burpees And Call Me In The Morning — How Psychedelic Experiences Might Treat Depression — The Power in Naming an Illness
Exchanging glances with the natural world happens more often than you’d think. It can be so profound, there’s a name for it: eye-to-eye epiphany. Original Air Date: February 08, 2020 *Guests: * Gavin Van Horn — Jenny Kendler — Ivan Schwab — Jane Goodall — Alan Lightman *Interviews In This Hour: * In The Eye Of The Osprey: A Physicist's Wild Epiphany — 100 Bird Eyes Are Watching You — The Look That Changed Primatology — Watching the Fierce Green Fire Die: Animal Gazes That Shaped Conservation Movements — The 600 Million Year History Of The Eye — 'We Are The Feast' — A Feminist Philosopher's Life-Changing Encounter With A Crocodile — How Do You Practice Kinship? A Brief Meditation
Hope means believing there’s a future. But can hope co-exist with cataclysmic realities like climate change, or disruptive technological advances like artificial intelligence? Original Air Date: May 04, 2019 *Guests: * Roy Scranton — Anne Lamott — Amy Webb — Victor LaValle — Robert Zubrin *Interviews In This Hour: * Can We Have Hope If The World Is 'Doomed'? — Hope Is Faith In Life Itself — 'Our Best Futures Never Come Fully Formed, Or Automatically' — Tales of Dragons That Fight Segregation, and AI That Fights Transphobia — How A Colony On Mars Would Change Everything On Earth
This hour we talk with people who’ve turned that around and made hope real, whether it’s through political activism, faith, music, or reading a life-changing novel. Original Air Date: April 27, 2019 *Guests: * DeRay Mckesson — Lydia Hester — Serene Jones — Megan Stielstra — Common *Interviews In This Hour: * To Make Big Social Change, Start With The PB&J Sandwiches — Teens Don't Want Hope. They Want Action. — Hope, Where Faith Becomes Action — Megan Stielstra On 'The Chronology of Water' — Making Hope In Verse
Original Air Date: April 20, 2019 Is hope something we’re innately born with, or something we can choose to have? We talk with people who tell us where they think hope lives in ourselves and our communities. *Guests: * Andre Willis — Steven Pinker — Tali Sharot — Alice Walker — Chigozie Obioma — Claire Peaslee *Interviews In This Hour: * Defining A New Grammar Of Hope — The Science Of Looking On The Bright Side — A Naturalist's Hopeful Pilgrimage — Everything Is Actually Awesome — Why Nigerians Are So Much Happier Than Americans — Hope Rises
What drives us toward armed conflict? And what does it take for peace activists to face down tyrants and military leaders? **Guests: ** Scott Anderson — Samantha Power — Benjamin Ginsberg — David Shields — Leymah Gbowee **Interviews In This Hour: ** In The Case Of Iran, Who Decides What Constitutes 'War'? — An Idealist Wrestles With The Ethics of Military Intervention — The Worth of War — War is Beautiful? — Is War Inevitable?
Clocks and calendars chop time into increments. It’s efficient, and it helps us get to meetings on time. But what does time feel like when you stop counting it? Guests: Alexander Rose — Douglas Rushkoff — Wade Davis — Brian Swimme — Laura Williams — Rachel Sussman Interviews In This Hour: Alexander Rose on The Clock of the Long Now — Reclaiming Time — The Eternal Moment — Brian Swimme on Organic Time — Laura Williams on a Tidal-Powered Moon Clock — What It Looks Like To Live For 600K Years
What if the guiding principle we used in cooking, eating and growing food was love? From an Iranian-American kitchen to the chocolate forests of Ecuador, we explore new ways to express deep flavors and personal identity through food and cooking. *Guests: * Simran Sethi — Samin Nosrat — Michael Twitty — Josh Noel *Interviews In This Hour: * The Frightening Sameness Beneath Hundreds of Flavors — A Little Grammy, A Little Bubbe: A Writer Embodies Family History Through Food — Anyone Can Cook—With the Right Elements — Does 'Selling Out' Make a Difference You Can Taste? — Two Dishes, Two Tastings: A Dinner Party with Simran, Michael, Samin and Josh
On this Winter Solstice, what can we learn from the natural world — from animals, from the water — about surviving and even celebrating the cold? Guests: Douglas Quin — Piers Vitebsky — T.C. Boyle — Bernd Heinrich — Lucy Jane Bledsoe — Lynne Cox Interviews In This Hour: How Animals Sound in Winter — Piers Vitebsky on 'The Reindeer People' — T.C. Boyle Recommends 'Winter World' — Ingenuity of Animals in Winter — Lucy Jane Bledsoe's Antarctic Novel — Swimming to Antarctica
Africans are moving into cities in unprecedented numbers. Lagos, Nigeria, is on track to have 100 million people. So how and why do cities thrive? *Guests: * Dagmawi Woubshet — Julie Mehretu — Emily Callaci — James Ogude — Ato Qyayson — Teju Cole — Meskerem Assegued *Interviews In This Hour: * Rediscovering the Indigenous City of Addis Ababa — 'People As Infrastructure' — A Tour Of The Networked City — 'I Am Because We Are': The African Philosophy of Ubuntu — How Pan-African Dreams Turned Dystopic — Decoding Global Capitalism on One African Street — Life in the Diaspora: How Teju Cole Pivots Between Cultures — Can Artists Create the City of the Future?
Even the most welcome gift can spark guilt, resentment, obligation or vulnerability. This hour, unwrapping the tangled emotions behind giving — and getting. Guests: Megan Costello — Haddayr Copley-Woods — David Graeber — Anand Giridharadas — Elizabeth Dunn Interviews In This Hour: In A Medical Crisis, Small Gestures Are Life-Changing — The Problems With Help You Didn't Ask For — There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Gift — The Strings Attached To Big-Ticket Donations — Giving Happiness That Lasts, Rather Than Things That Take Up Space
The board games we play tell us so much more about ourselves than we think — our history, our politics and our inner psychology. Guests: Angelo Bautista — Eric Thurm — Brin-Jonathan Butler — Annelise Heinz — Linda Feinstein — Jeff Yang Interviews In This Hour: Picking Up The Pieces Of Mahjong — What You Learn In The 'Magic Circle' — Chess, A Perfect Game for Crushing Your Opponent’s Ego
It creeps into everything: guilt that we're not good enough, fit enough, smart enough. As we peruse Instagram, all we see is the perfection of others reflecting our own failures back at us. Why do we spend so much time feeling guilty? Should we? Guests: Devorah Baum — Lucas Mann — Thomas Curran — Stephen Greenblatt — Susan Bandes Interviews In This Hour: Why Do We Still Feel Guilty? — Reality TV And Other Things We Secretly Love — Perfectionism Is Making Young People Miserable. Here’s How To Help.— Original Sin And The Genesis Of Guilt — Should Judges And Juries Look For Remorse?
Is there a book you can’t forget? A book that left a mark on you? We celebrate books and reading with an eclectic cast of writers from around the country. Guests: Chloe Benjamin — Anne Lamott — Rebecca Traister — Natalia Sylvester — Tommy Orange — Pamela Paul — Shannon Henry Kleiber — Jericho Brown — Susan Orlean Interviews In This Hour: Anne Lamott on 'Pippi Longstocking' — Powerful Book Encounters — Tommy Orange on 'A Confederacy Of Dunces' — Reading As Our First Window To The World — A Book Club On The Day Of The Book Choosing — Jericho Brown on 'The Witches Of Eastwick' — The Book Burning That Brought All Of Los Angeles Together