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To the Best of our Knowledge

Wisconsin Public Radio

Big Ideas. Listen. Think. TTBOOK is a nationally-syndicated, Peabody award-winning radio show where long-form interviews help fuel deep insights into our world. We have conversations with novelists and poets, scientists and software engineers, journalists and historians, filmmakers and philosophers, artists and activists—anyone with a big idea and a passion to have a creative and engaging conversation about it.

Big Ideas. Listen. Think. TTBOOK is a nationally-syndicated, Peabody award-winning radio show where long-form interviews help fuel deep insights into our world. We have conversations with novelists and poets, scientists and software engineers, journalists and historians, filmmakers and philosophers, artists and activists—anyone with a big idea and a passion to have a creative and engaging conversation about it.
More Information

Location:

Madison, WI

Description:

Big Ideas. Listen. Think. TTBOOK is a nationally-syndicated, Peabody award-winning radio show where long-form interviews help fuel deep insights into our world. We have conversations with novelists and poets, scientists and software engineers, journalists and historians, filmmakers and philosophers, artists and activists—anyone with a big idea and a passion to have a creative and engaging conversation about it.

Twitter:

@TTBOOK

Language:

English

Contact:

6082625263


Episodes

If Your Clothes Could Talk

3/16/2019
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Whether you know it or not, your closets are filled with personal information. About your identity, your values, your personality. And every day, you wear it all right out the door for the whole world to see. Do you think about what are you saying with your clothes? Guests: Angelo Bautista, Avery Trufelman, Carolyn Smith, agnès b., Jo Paoletti

Duration:00:55:13

Being Sincere in a Cynical World [Rebroadcast]

3/9/2019
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Why is the world so damn cynical? Rather than surrendering to corrosive, hopeless snark, we look to some unexpected sources — video games, the lives lead by those who leave hate groups, and the optimism of the Afrofuturist art and culture movement — to make the case for sincerity. Guests: Jason Rohrer, Christy Wampole, Christian Picciolini, Ingrid LaFleur

Duration:00:52:07

What's The Real Migration Crisis?

3/2/2019
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Debates over immigration are raging all over the world, but sometimes it’s hard to sort out the political posturing from the actual problems. Should we be doing things differently? In a highly connected world, does the idea of a national border even make sense anymore? Guests: Mariela Shaker, Wolfgang Munchau, Molly Crabapple, Parag Khanna, Jose Angel N, Sunjeev Sahota

Duration:00:53:17

Your Miraculous And Mysterious Body

2/23/2019
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Sometimes, we take our body for granted. But even the everyday things it can do – keep our heart beating, fight off illness – are pretty extraordinary. Do you know what your body can do? We explore a kidney transplant, a chronic illness and a common fever, and find the mystery and the familiar in the anatomy of ourselves. Guests: Josh Mezrich, Missy Makinia, Porochista Khakpour, Gavin Francis

Duration:00:52:07

Is Guilt A Wasted Emotion? [Rebroadcast]

2/16/2019
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It creeps into everything from exercise to pore size, from diet to personal finance, from relationships to parenting style: guilt that we're not good enough, fit enough, smart enough. And 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

Duration:00:52:08

What Sparks Creativity?

2/9/2019
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Human creativity — whether it’s solving a tough problem or writing a novel — is one of our defining traits. It’s also deeply mysterious. Where does that creative spark come from? Guests: Heather Berlin, Siri Hustvedt, Jim Holt, Mary Sharrat, Nathaniel Mary Quinn

Duration:00:51:57

In Search of "Real" Food [Rebroadcast]

2/2/2019
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What makes food "authentic"? Do we need to feel close to where it's made? Know the complete history of where it comes from? Be able to diagram the chemistry of how it dances along our taste buds? How can we quantify the romance between eaters and the food they love? In this hour, we talk about what it means to truly love what you eat and drink — and we ask why it matters. Guests: Simran Sethi, Samin Nosrat, Michael Twitty, Josh Noel

Duration:00:51:57

Virtually Anywhere [Extra]

1/30/2019
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Remember virtual reality? Back in the 1990’s, it was going to be the technology of the future. Today, it’s here. But we're still figuring out what to do with it. Storytellers and even journalists have begun experimenting — and at forefront is Will Smith. He recently created a virtual reality talk show called “The Foo Show,” in which he interviews game developers inside the environments from their favorite games. Will thinks that eventually virtual spaces will go way beyond games into...

Duration:00:18:23

New Voices in Native American Writing

1/26/2019
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Every so often, a new literary movement coalesces. A new generation of writers finds a voice. This time they’re young, gifted, and Native American. Guests: Jennifer Foerster, Tommy Orange, Terese Marie Mailhot, David Treuer, Kevin Goodan, Tall Paul

Duration:00:52:27

Women Who Rule [Rebroadcast]

1/19/2019
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Where do you go to find models of powerful women? Hatshepsut, Circe, Antigone — the ancient world was full of them, real and mythic. For thousands of years, women ruled the world. Today we barely know their names. Why? This week we rediscover the women of ancient myths and legends. Guests: Kara Cooney, Madeline Miller, Natalie Haynes, Emily Wilson, Serenity Young, Romare Bearden

Duration:00:51:28

What Can We Learn From Teenagers? [Rebroadcast]

1/12/2019
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All over the country, a chorus of hope is coming from an unexpected group — teenagers. They are marching, protesting and demanding a better future as we – the adults – watch them with a kind of heartbreaking pride. These teenagers are not waiting for adults to figure things out for them. They have superpowers — innocence, idealism, and Instagram — and they aren't waiting for permission to use them to reshape the conversation around everything from gun control to education to climate...

Duration:00:50:59

The Third Act [Rebroadcast]

1/5/2019
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If life is a play, what happens during the last act? What’s it like to live knowing you have a limited amount of time left? This week, we’re talking about how to face, and in some cases, embrace your third act, whenever it arrives. Whether you’re looking at retirement, a late-life job change, an illness or just a lot of birthday candles on the cake — how do you live differently when you reach what’s likely to be your final act? Guests: Sabrina Frey, Daniel Pink, Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey,...

Duration:00:50:59

Ending With A Flourish [Rebroadcast]

12/29/2018
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New Years celebrations are all parties and hats, songs and champagne. No one ever seems to talk about the fact that something big just ended. An entire year of life, come and gone. Shouldn’t we pause to mourn, or mark its passing with a little reverence? We don’t handle endings well, in general. So this hour, let’s learn about how to make a good ending — whether leaving a lover, quitting a job, or getting ready for the end of life itself. Guests: Steve Almond, Ilana Gershon, Sean...

Duration:00:50:58

Should You Delete Your Facebook Account?

12/22/2018
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Your finger’s hovering over the "delete" button on your Facebook app. Your friends are abandoning Twitter. Every day brings fresh revelations of data breaches, privacy abuses, Russian spies, trolls. Is it time to hit “delete” on all of it? But then again, we joined these platforms for a reason. In a more perfect world, what could these platforms be doing for us? Guests: Jaron Lanier, Ethan Zuckerman, Whitney Phillips, DeRay Mckesson, Yuval Noah Harari

Duration:00:56:07

The Secret Language of Trees [Rebroadcast]

12/15/2018
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Using a complex network of chemical signals, trees talk to each other and form alliances with fellow trees, even other species. In fact, whole forests exist as a kind of superorganism. And some trees are incredibly old. Did you know a single bristlecone pine can live up to 6,000 years? And the root mass of aspens might live 100,000 years? We explore the science and history of trees and talk with Richard Powers about his epic novel "The Overstory." Guests: Mark Hirsch, Richard Powers,...

Duration:00:50:59

Giving Is Complicated

12/8/2018
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Even the most welcome gift can spark guilt, resentment, obligation or vulnerability. We can be inspired by the generosity of others, or unsettled by uncertainty of how to say thank you, or whether an especially generous gift comes with strings attached. This hour, unwrapping the tangled emotions behind giving — and getting. Guests: Megan Costello, Haddyr Copley-Woods, David Graeber, Anand Giridharadas, Elizabeth Dunn

Duration:00:51:14

Is Anger Useful?

12/1/2018
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We’ve been taught to ignore, stifle, or just get over anger for many years — but what if we embraced it? It seems like most of us are feeling angry these days. But what if we took that emotion and instead of letting it eat us up, used it as fuel to do something, to actually help us feel better? Could anger be a useful emotion? Guests: Rebecca Traister, Cristen Conger, Caroline Ervin, Richard Davidson, Alice Walker

Duration:00:53:34

Religion Without Doctrine

11/24/2018
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What's the essence of religion? God? Scripture? Moral codes? Or is it really about something more mysterious and unexplainable? In this hour, we explore the roots of religion — religion before it's even called "religion." Because if you strip away all the doctrine, the dogma, the rules for how to live — what’s left are primal spiritual experiences. But what do they tell us about ourselves and our world? Guests: Elizabeth Krohn, Jeff Kripal, Elaine Pagels, Jericho Brown

Duration:00:53:44

We've Had 30 Years Of Prozac. Why Are We Still Depressed? [Rebroadcast]

11/17/2018
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Modern anti-depressants have saved a lot of minds. And lives. But our 30-year experiment with modern anti-depressants is taking a toll. What have they done to our bodies? And how do we navigate that trade-off between body and mind? Is it clear that they even work? There are a lot of us who struggle with mood disorders or mental illness of one sort or another. If you do, we here at TTBOOK want you to know that you’re not alone. If you're looking for more in-depth knowledge on what you might...

Duration:00:50:59

Writing Truth and Lies

11/10/2018
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We all tell stories about our lives: funny stories, happy stories, sad stories. But are they true stories? In an age of “alternative facts” and “fake news,” we’re all thinking harder about why truth matters – not just in politics, but in our personal lives. A biographer, a poet, a memoirist and a filmmaker describe the moral struggle and personal cost involved in telling not just the truth, but the whole truth. *Guests: *Caroline Fraser, Terese Marie Mailhot, Karl Ove Knausgaard, Errol...

Duration:00:56:48