Richard Holmes – The Age of Wonder

Bookclub | 9 April 2019 | 0h 34m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Richard Holmes about his book The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science. Describes the scientific ferment that swept through Britain in the late-18th century and tells stories of the celebrated innovators and their great scientific discoveries: from telescopic sight and the discovery of Uranus to Humphrey Davy’s invention of the miner’s safety lamp, and from the first balloon flight to African exploration.

This is one of my wife’s favourite books.

Primatologist Frans De Waal Explores What Humans Can Learn From Animal Emotions

On Second Thought | 27 August 2019 | 0h 48m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Frans de Waal about his book Mama’s Last Hug: Animal Emotions and What They Tell Us about Ourselves. Discusses the evidence for animal emotions, how they compare with human emotions, and how this challenges notions of animals as stimulus response machines.

Vanessa Woods on Bonobo Handshake

Office Hours at Duke University | 19 May 2010 | 0h 56m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Vanessa Woods about her book Bonobo Handshake: A Memoir of Love and Adventure in the Congo. Tells stories from her work researching bonobos at the Lola Ya Bonobo Sanctuary, a refuge for orphaned baby bonobos in the Congo. Describes problem-solving experiments designed to understand how bonobos differ to humans and chimpanzees.

Roy Baumeister Interview

Trend Following with Michael Covel | 4 May 2018 | 1h 20m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Roy Baumeister about his work on the self, social rejection, belongingness, sexuality, sex differences, self-control, self-esteem, self-defeating behaviours, motivation, aggression, consciousness, and free will.

Let’s Talk About Eels

All Of It | 5 August 2020 | 0h 27m | Listen Later
Interview with Patrik Svensson about his book The Book of Eels: Our Enduring Fascination with the Most Mysterious Creature in the Natural World. Discusses the life cycles of eels, the history of our understanding of them, and the significance of eels to his memories of growing up in Sweden.

Why Are Boys Academically Underperforming?

The Inquiry | 31 December 2020 | 0h 22m | Listen Later | iTunes
Explores the potential causes (both innate and socially conditioned) behind the worldwide phenomenon of boys trailing girls in their academic performance.

Michael Pollan on the Psychedelic Society

The Ezra Klein Show | 14 December 2020 | 1h 16m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Michael Pollan discussing the Oregon ballot initiative that legalized the use of psilocybin. Covers what Proposition 109 does and the challenges it will face, the lost history of psychedelics being used as a therapeutic tool in the 1950s, why the mental health profession in America is so excited about the revolutionary possibilities of psychedelic treatment, why the “noetic experience” induced by psychedelics has such incredible healing potential, whether widespread psychedelic use would create massive population-level changes in society, and much more.

A Tale of Two Evolutionary Processes with Rita Colwell

This View of Life | 25 August 2020 | 1h 15m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Rita Colwell about her book A Lab of Her Own: One Woman’s Personal Journey Through Sexism in Science. Tells two evolutionary stories. The first is the story of her career studying microbial genetic evolution, including diseases such as cholera and anthrax, and serving as Director of the National Science Foundation. The second is the story of cultural evolution and the lack thereof, such as entrenched sexism in science and the reluctance of the medical establishment to embrace new ideas.