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Town Hall Seattle Science Series
65 minutes | 4 days ago
125. Noreena Hertz with Steve Scher: Restoring Human Connection in a World That’s Pulling Apart
Even before a global pandemic introduced us to terms like “social distancing,” loneliness was a defining condition of the twenty-first century, academic Noreena Hertz posits. She argues that the fabric of community was unraveling, and our personal relationships were under threat. Combining a decade of research with firsthand reporting, Hertz joined us to discuss her findings, collected in her book The Lonely Century: How to Restore Human Connection in a World that’s Pulling Apart. She shares how technology is not the sole culprit, but equally to blame are the dismantling of civic institutions, the reorganization of the workplace, the mass migration to cities, and decades of policies that have placed self-interest above the collective good. This loneliness is not merely a mental and physical health crisis, Hertz contends, but an economic and political one as well. But she believes it’s a crisis we have the power to solve, and she offers bold solutions for healing our fractured communities and restoring connection in our lives. Noreena Hertz is a renowned thought leader, academic, and broadcaster. She is the author of The Silent Takeover, The Debt Threat, and Eyes Wide Open. Her opinion pieces have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, and Financial Times. She is currently based at University College London, where she holds an honorary professorship. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780593135839 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here.
60 minutes | 12 days ago
124. Peter Godfrey-Smith: Animal Life and the Problem of Consciousness
Dip below the ocean’s surface and you are soon confronted by forms of life that could not seem more foreign to our own: sea sponges, soft corals, and serpulidae worms, whose rooted bodies, intricate geometry, and flower-like appendages are more reminiscent of plant life or even architecture than anything recognizably animal. Yet these creatures are our cousins. And, scuba-diving philosopher Peter Godfrey-Smith asserted, as fellow members of the animal kingdom, they can teach us much about the evolutionary origins of not only our bodies but also our minds. In this presentation, Godfrey-Smith joined us with findings from his book Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind. Following his acclaimed book Other Minds about the mind of the octopus, he expanded his inquiry to animals at large. He delved into what it feels like to perceive and interact with the world as other life-forms do. Following the evolutionary paths of a glass sponge, soft coral, banded shrimp, octopus, and fish, then moving onto land, the world of insects, birds, and primates, Godfrey-Smith gathered their stories to address one of the most vexing philosophical problems: that of consciousness. Peter Godfrey-Smith is a professor in the School of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Sydney. He is the author of the bestselling Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness, which has been published in more than twenty languages. His other books include Theory and Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Science and Darwinian Populations and Natural Selection, which won the 2010 Lakatos Award. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780374207946 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here.
58 minutes | 19 days ago
123. Anatol Lieven: The Case for Nationalism in a Warming World
The climate emergency is intensifying while international responses continue to falter. With every day that passes, another day of action is lost, and a day closer we are to unsustainability. But professor Anatol Lieven believes he has a revolutionary solution: he advocates for redefining climate change as a threat to nation-states, and leveraging nationalism to create action. Drawing on his book Climate Change and the Nation State: The Case for Nationalism in a Warming World, he outlined his understanding that nationalism is the most important force in motivating people to care about the wellbeing of future generations. He shared how leaning into this would allow us to mobilize our national defense forces in support of climate change action, and expressed his frustration with environmentalists who cling to ideological purity at the loss of fostering dominant national consensus. Lieven presented an essential contribution to the debate on how to deal with a climatic crisis that if unchecked will threaten the survival of Western democracies and every organized human society. Anatol Lieven is a professor at Georgetown University in Qatar and a fellow of the New America Foundation. He worked as a British journalist in Pakistan, Afghanistan, the former USSR, and Eastern Europe. He has commented on current affairs for leading journals including The New York Times. His books include Pakistan: A Hard Country; America Right or Wrong; Ethical Realism; Ukraine and Russia; and The Baltic Revolution, which won the 1994 Orwell Prize. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9780190090180 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here.
60 minutes | a month ago
122. Avi Loeb: The First Interstellar Visitor to Earth
In late 2017, scientists at a Hawaiian observatory glimpsed an object soaring through our inner solar system, moving so quickly that it could only have come from another star. That begs the question: what exactly was that object? Harvard’s top astronomer Avi Loeb joined us to share his theory: that the object was the first confirmed interstellar visitor to be spotted in our solar system. With insight from his book Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth, he explained all of the reasons the object couldn’t have been an asteroid, and why he believes it was a piece of advance technology created by a distant alien civilization. He further outlined his controversial theory, and explored the implications: for science, for religion, and for the future of our species and our planet. Join us as we aim for the stars with this thrilling discussion, where Loeb asks us to think big and to expect the unexpected. Abraham (Avi) Loeb is the Frank B. Baird, Jr., Professor of Science at Harvard University, chair of Harvard’s Department of Astronomy, founding director of Harvard’s Black Hole Initiative, and director of the Institute for Theory and Computation (ITC) within the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He also chairs the Advisory Committee for the Breakthrough Starshot Initiative, serves as the science theory director for all Initiatives of the Breakthrough Prize Foundation, as well as chair of the Board on Physics and Astronomy of the National Academies. Author of four books and over 700 scientific papers, Loeb is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the American Physical Society, and the International Academy of Astronautics. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9780358278146 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To make a donation or become a member click here.
57 minutes | a month ago
121. Howard Gardner: The Synthesizing Mind
Many experts find that Howard Gardner’s book Frames of Mind was a rare publishing phenomenon—a mind-changer. Widely read by the general public as well as educators, it laid out Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences: the idea that rather than seeing human intelligence as dominated by a single general ability, it could actually be differentiated into modalities. Now, nearly four decades after Frames of Mind was first published, Gardner joined us to share thoughts from his book A Synthesizing Mind, reflecting on his own intellectual development, tracing his evolution from bookish child to eager college student to disengaged graduate student to Harvard professor. Having spent his career focused on human minds in general, now he considers his own mind, and concludes that his is a “synthesizing mind,” with the ability to survey experiences and data across a wide range of disciplines and perspectives. Gardner invited us to an insightful discussion about different types of intelligences—including and especially his own—and how a synthesizing mind could be particularly valuable at this time. Howard Gardner is John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Research Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Best known as the originator of the Theory of Multiple Intelligences, he is the author of thirty books, including Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences; Truth, Beauty, and Goodness Reframed; and The App Generation (with Katie Davis). Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9780262044264 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here.
64 minutes | a month ago
120. Dr. Rod Hochman and Dr. Jim Heath: How Will Healthcare Be Different After COVID?
Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) is a collaborative cross-disciplinary nonprofit biomedical research organization based in Seattle. ISB and Town Hall proudly present ISB President Jim Heath in conversation with Rod Hochman, President and CEO of Providence. Join them for a discussion exploring what the future of healthcare might look like in a post-pandemic world. Dr. Jim Heath is a chemist and the president and professor of Institute of Systems Biology. He also has the position of Professor of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology at UCLA, and he has directed the National Cancer Institute-funded NSB Cancer Center since 2005. Dr. Rod Hochman is the president and CEO of Providence St. Joseph Health, a Catholic not-for-profit health system. He is the chair elect designate for the American Hospital Association (AHA), chair of AHA’s Regional Policy Board 9, and past chair of the board of trustees for the Catholic Health Association. Presented by Town Hall Seattle & Institute for Systems Biology. To become a Town Hall Seattle member or make a donation click here.
63 minutes | 2 months ago
119. Dan Lieberman: Making Exercise More Fun, Healthy, and Rewarding
If exercise is healthy, why do many people dislike or avoid it? Is sitting really the new smoking? Can you lose weight by walking? Does running ruin your knees? Should we do weights, cardio, or high-intensity training? Professor of human evolutionary biology Dan Lieberman joined us to answer these questions and bust some common myths about exercising with insight from his book Exercised: Why Something We Never Evolved to Do Is Healthy and Rewarding. Drawing on insights from evolutionary biology and anthropology, he told the story of how and why humans evolved to walk, run, dig, and more while avoiding needless exertion but did not evolve to exercise. He argued that rather than shaming and blaming people for avoiding exercise, we should be making exercise more enjoyable. Join Lieberman as he revolutionizes the way we think about exercising, and explains why exercise can reduce our vulnerability to the diseases most likely to make us sick and kill us. Dan Lieberman is Edwin M. Lerner Professor of Biological Sciences and professor of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University. He is the author of the national bestseller The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health, and Disease. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9781524746988 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here.
65 minutes | 2 months ago
118. Alberto Cairo: How Charts Lie and Influence Our Perception of Truth
We’ve all seen charts come through our social media feeds or on the news. More than ever, in a time when conversations are increasingly driven by numbers—for example, in relation to the COVID pandemic—charts are ostensibly used to communicate essential information. But how much can we trust those charts? And how do they influence our perception of truth? Leading data visualization expert Alberto Cairo joined us in this livestreamed primer, introducing a core competency on analyzing charts, diagrams, and infographics. He argued that, to be informed citizens, we must all be able to decode and use the visual information that politicians, journalists, and even our employers present us with every day. Considering the decoding of charts an essential new literacy in our data-driven world, he examines contemporary examples ranging from election result infographics to global GDP maps, box office record charts—and even COVID graphics—to share the positives and negatives of relaying data visually. Alberto Cairo is the Knight Chair in Visual Journalism at the School of Communication of the University of Miami. He has consulted with companies and institutions such as Google and the Congressional Budget Office on visualizations. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780393358421 Reference Alberto Cairo's presentation: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/jk4ginxyai6ylqu/AABvqdyT1hJtyFN9nKNHyX9Ba?dl=0 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here.
67 minutes | 3 months ago
117. Lisa Feldman Barrett with James Ryerson: Why Do We Have Brains? and Other Neuroscientific Revelations
Have you ever wondered why you have a brain? Let renowned neuroscientist Lisa Feldman Barrett demystify that big grey blob between your ears. Barrett joined us for a presentation with revelations of mind-expanding lessons from the front lines of neuroscience research, with support from her book Seven and a Half Lessons About the Brain. She shared where brains come from, how they’re structured (and why it matters), and how yours works in tandem with other brains to create everything you experience. She also tackled popular myths such as the idea of a “lizard brain” and the alleged battle between thoughts and emotions, or event between nature and nurture, to determine your behavior. Join us for an evening full of surprises, humor, and important implications for human nature. Lisa Feldman Barrett, PhD, is a professor of psychology.She is a University Distinguished Professor at Northeastern University, with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. She has received numerous scientific awards, including a Guggenheim fellowship and an NIH Director’s Pioneer Award, and is the author of How Emotions are Made. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780358157144 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here.
59 minutes | 3 months ago
116. Michael Jacobson with Dr. Jim Krieger: Salt Wars
A high-sodium diet is deadly, many scientists believe. Studies have linked it to high blood pressure, strokes, and heart attacks. It’s been estimated that excess sodium in the American diet causes as many as 100,000 deaths and many billions of dollars in avoidable healthcare costs each year. And yet salt is everywhere in our diets. Why hasn’t salt received the sort of public attention and regulatory action that sugar and fat have? In this presentation with scientist and nutrition advocate Michael Jacobson, he investigated why salt seems to have slipped under the regulatory radar, with support from his book Salt Wars: The Battle Over the Biggest Killer in the American Diet. Joined in conversation by founding Executive Director of Healthy Food America Dr. Jim Krieger, Jacobson recounted the battles between public health advocates, food industries, and right-wing politicians. He examined how, despite an abundance of research going back more than half a century showing a multitude of high-sodium diet related ills, a few scientists argue the opposite is true, and have successfully fought government efforts to reduce what could be dangerous levels of sodium in our food. He advised us on how to reduce salt and calls on us to suit up for the next battle in the salt wars. Michael F. Jacobson is Cofounder and Senior Scientist at the Center for Science in the Public Interest. He is the author or co-author of Restaurant Confidential, Salt: The Forgotten Killer, Six Arguments for a Greener Diet, and other books and pamphlets. Jim Krieger, MD, MPH is founding Executive Director of Healthy Food America (HFA) and Clinical Professor at University of Washington Schools of Medicine and Public Health. He is a nationally recognized expert in developing policy, systems and environment change methods to prevent obesity and chronic diseases. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9780262044448 Sponsored by PCC Community Markets. Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here.
59 minutes | 3 months ago
115. Perri Klass with Paula Fass: How Science and Public Health Gave Children a Future
Not too long ago, parents lived with the near certainty of losing a child or two. Even in the world’s wealthiest nations, children died of diarrhea, diphtheria and measles, of scarlet fever and meningitis. Our culture was shaped by these deaths. But over the past century, we’ve made huge strides in reducing infant and child mortality rates, and Perri Klass joined us to pull the story of that crusade together for the first time. Pediatrician and writer Klass shared an overview of this improvement with support from her book A Good Time to Be Born: How Science and Public Health Gave Children a Future. She examines the history of child mortality, how it affected every level of society, regardless of access to resources: from presidents and titans of industry, to the poor and powerless. She payed tribute to scientists, public health advocates, and groundbreaking women doctors who brought new scientific ideas about sanitation and vaccination to families. Don’t miss this hopeful conversation about the great strides that have transformed parenting, doctoring, and the way we live. Perri Klass is a professor of journalism and pediatrics at New York University, codirector of NYU Florence, and national medical director of Reach Out and Read. She writes the weekly column “The Checkup” for the New York Times. Paula S. Fass is a professor of history emerita at UC Berkeley, and the author of several books, most recently of The End of American Childhood: A History of Parenting from Life on the Frontier to the Managed Child. Over her 45 year career, she has researched and written about many areas of American culture and society, including parenting, immigration, education, sexuality, and youth culture. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9780393609998 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here.
67 minutes | 3 months ago
114. Yolande Strengers and Jenny Kennedy: Why Siri and Alexa Need a Feminist Reboot
Meet the Smart Wife—at your service, an eclectic collection of feminized AI, robotic, and smart devices. Maybe she goes by Siri or Alexa, lives in your Google Home, or is a virtual anime hologram named Hikari Azuma. These feminized digital assistants are friendly and flirty—but what impact are they having on gender equity? Digital sociologist Yolande Strengers and media and communications expert Jenny Kennedy joined us via livestream to share findings from their book The Smart Wife: Why Siri, Alexa, and Other Smart Home Devices Need a Feminist Reboot. They examined the emergence of digital devices that carry out “wifework”—domestic responsibilities that have traditionally fallen to (human) wives—and are designed in male-dominated industries that have made the 1950s housewife the principal prototype for virtual helpers. They asserted that it is time to give the Smart Wife a reboot, to address how the design of gendered devices reinscribes outdated and unfounded stereotypes. Don’t miss this vital conversation with Strengers and Kennedy about how advanced technology is taking us backwards on gender equity—and a proposal for change that would promote a revaluing of femininity in society. Yolande Strengers is a digital sociologist and human-computer interaction scholar. She is Associate Professor of Digital Technology and Society in the Emerging Technologies Research Lab at Monash University, Melbourne. Jenny Kennedy is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Media and Communication at RMIT University, Melbourne. Her projects currently focus on digital inclusion of low-income populations, and the gendering of AI and automation in home environments. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9780262044370 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To make a donation or become a member click here.
61 minutes | 4 months ago
113. Sean B. Carroll: A Series of Fortunate Events
Why is the world the way it is? How did we get here? Does everything happen for a reason or are some things left to chance? Philosophers and theologians have pondered these questions for millennia, but scientist Sean B. Carroll joined us with startling scientific discoveries to assert that we live in a world driven by chance. Carroll drew from his book A Series of Fortunate Events: Chance and the Making of the Planet, Life, and You to submit that humans, like every other species, are here by accident. But what a glorious convergence of accidents! He examined how shocking it is just how many things—any of which might never have occurred—had to happen in certain ways for any of us to exist. From an extremely improbably asteroid impact, to the wild gyrations of the Ice Age, to invisible accidents in our parents’ bodies, we are all here through an astonishing series of fortunate events. Carroll invited us to ponder how chance continues to reign every day—and consider a new appreciation for the surprising source of all the beauty and diversity in the living world. Sean B. Carroll is an award-winning scientist, writer, educator, and film producer. He is Vice President for Science Education at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the Balo-Simon Chair of Biology at the University of Maryland. His books include The Serengeti Rules, Brave Genius, and Remarkable Creatures, which was a finalist for the National Book Award. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780691201757 Watch this livestreamed presentation on YouTube: https://youtu.be/jaqkVRWZUv0 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To make a donation or become a member click here.
71 minutes | 4 months ago
112. Dr. Eric Alm with Dr. Sean Gibbons: Low-Cost Pandemic Tracking Through Sewage
Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) is a collaborative cross-disciplinary nonprofit biomedical research organization based in Seattle. In 2020, ISB is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a four-part virtual speaker series highlighting some of the most important topics in science and health care. ISB and Town Hall proudly present microbiome researcher and professor Dr. Eric Alm. Following Dr. Alm’s talk on low-cost pandemic tracking efforts in hundreds of cities, using data collected from sewage, he’ll be joined in conversation by ISB Assistant Professor Dr. Sean Gibbons for an in-depth discussion and audience questions. Dr. Eric Alm is a professor of biological engineering at MIT. He earned his PhD from the University of Washington, and then completed postdoctoral work at UC Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab before joining the MIT faculty. His research focuses on non-invasive monitoring of human health, environmental surveillance, sewage epidemiology, and more. Presented by Town Hall Seattle and Institute for Systems Biology. To make a donation or become a Town Hall Seattle member click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.
74 minutes | 4 months ago
111. Dr. Maria Carrillo: The Latest Discoveries in Alzheimer’s & Dementia Research
Alzheimer’s is a global health problem, with more than 5 million people in the US alone living with the disease. Tremendous gains have been made in the understanding of the science and basic biology underlying Alzheimer’s and other dementias. In this presentation, Dr. Maria Carrillo joined us to share the latest advances. Presented by Town Hall Seattle and Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter, Dr. Carrillo brought her expertise as chief science officer at the Alzheimer’s Association to impart the great strides that are being made in prevention, detection, diagnostics, and therapeutic interventions. She discussed the causes of Alzheimer’s and dementia, the risk factors, and how lifestyle can impact risk reduction and prevention. Dr. Carrillo explained how advanced imaging assists with early detection and diagnosis—and how a search for a blood test could be a game-changer. Maria C. Carrillo, Ph.D. is the chief science officer at the Alzheimer’s Association, where she sets the strategic vision for the global research program. She is an internationally respected expert, and has been in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time magazine, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt. She has also published extensively on early diagnosis and biomarker standardization efforts, as well as on the global challenges to progress. To watch this program on YouTube click here. Presented by Town Hall Seattle and Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter.
61 minutes | 4 months ago
110. Doug Kelbaugh: The Urban Fix
The fight against climate change is monumental and urgent. Yet one aspect of the international dialogue is conspicuously absent, Doug Kelbaugh argues—urban design. Professor and urban planner Doug Kelbaugh joined us to share from his book The Urban Fix: Resilient Cities in the War Against Climate Change, Heat Islands, and Overpopulation. He explained how cities are one of the most significant contributors to global climate change, but also how they may provide the answers to their own problems. Urban design, planning, and policies can use their inherent advantages to counter the threats of climate change in incremental, manageable steps, like planting trees and painting roofs white. Kelbaugh invited us to a better understanding of the impact resilient cities can have on the global crisis—and to explore whether cities may be our last best hope for the future. Doug Kelbaugh is a professor of architecture and urban and regional planning. After graduating from Princeton, he led Kelbaugh + Lee from 1977 to 1985, an architecture firm that won 15 design awards and competitions. He’s authored or edited several books and several book chapters on livable, lovable, and resilient architecture and cities. Buy the Book: https://www.petermiller.com/proddetail.asp?prod=9780000000000 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To make a donation or become a member click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.
66 minutes | 4 months ago
109. Dr. Jennifer Reich: From Parents’ Rejection of Vaccines to a COVID Vaccine—Understanding the Politics of Immunization
Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) is a collaborative cross-disciplinary nonprofit biomedical research organization based in Seattle. In 2020, ISB is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a four-party virtual speaker series highlighting some of the most important topics in science and health care. ISB and Town Hall proudly present Dr. Jennifer Reich, a Colorado-based sociologist who researches how individuals and families weigh information and strategize their interactions with state and service providers in the context of public policy, particularly as they relate to health care and welfare. Jennifer Reich, PhD, is Professor of Sociology at the University of Colorado Denver. She is the author of two award-winning books: Fixing Families: Parents, Power, and the Child Welfare System and Calling the Shots: Why Parents Reject Vaccines. Reich is also the co-editor of the book Reproduction and Society, and has written more than 30 articles and book chapters that explore childhood vaccinations, reproductive health, welfare, multiracial families, public assistance, and recovery following disaster. Presented by Town Hall Seattle and Institute for Systems Biology.
51 minutes | 5 months ago
108. Richard Yonck: Future Minds—The Rise of Intelligence
From chatbots to brain-computer interfaces to the possibility of superintelligences, our reality is being transformed before our eyes. But can we actually know the nature of intelligence? Futurist and author Richard Yonck joined us to explore our past and future understanding of intelligence. Drawing from his book Future Minds: The Rise of Intelligence, From the Big Bang to the End of the Universe, Yonck challenged our assumptions about what intelligence actually is—many scholars view intelligence as the natural result of progress, but what if there’s more to it than that? Drawing on conversations with scientists and researchers at the forefront of AI, physics, cognitive neuroscience, complexity and other fields, he asked us to consider whether intelligence is an inevitability, an underlying property of our universe. Yonck invited us to examine our own conceptions about the nature of intelligence, where it comes from, and (more importantly) where it is headed. Richard Yonck is a futurist, bestselling author, and international speaker who consults to Fortune 500 companies. He regularly explores the future of artificial intelligence, robotics, 3D printing, the Internet of Things, biotechnology, nanotechnology, and transhumanism with a focus on their synergies and social implications. He is an executive board member of the Association of Professional Futurists and a member of the National Association of Science Writers. Buy the Book: https://www.thirdplacebooks.com/book/9781948924382 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.
87 minutes | 5 months ago
106. Erin Brockovich with Suzanne Boothby: Our National Water Crisis and What We the People Can Do About It
Imagine turning on the tap in the morning to find an unpleasant brown sludge that tastes like metal. Then imagine you were told by officials that the water was safe to drink. Would you believe them? Environmental activist and renowned crusader Erin Brockovich joined us via livestream in conversation with journalist Suzanne Boothby to explore how cases just like that are happening across the United States. Drawing from her long-awaited book, Superman’s Not Coming: Our National Water Crisis and What We the People Can Do About It, she examined what’s at stake, writes of the fraudulent science that disguises these issues, and exposes that cancer clusters are not being reported. She shared how the saga of Pacific Gas and Electric—the subject of the award-winning film based on her fight against them—continues to this day, and about everyday people who are fighting for clean and safe water in their communities. Join her as she looks at our present situation and reveals the imminent threats, but also shows us how we can each take action to make change—before it is too late. Erin Brockovich is the president of Brockovich Research & Consulting and the founder of the Erin Brockovich Foundation, a nonprofit organization created to educate and empower communities in their fight for clean water. She hosts her own show on PodcastOne. Suzanne Boothby is the author of The After Cancer Diet. She is a journalist who writes about health, politics, food, and eco-conscious stories and is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina. Buy the book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9781524746964 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.
58 minutes | 5 months ago
105. Jonathan Berman: Anti-Vaxxers and How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement
Vaccines are a documented success story, one of the most successful public health interventions in history. Yet there is a vocal anti-vaccination movement. How can we better understand the history and concerns behind that movement? Science professor Jonathan Berman joined us via livestream with revelations from his book Anti-Vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement. He explained how the origins of today’s anti-vaccine movement stretch all the way back to the resistance to Britain’s Vaccination Act of 1853, and explored how the arguments made back then mirror those made today. He provided background information on vaccines and how they work, and discusses the development of new vaccines in the twentieth century and their resulting controversies. In a moment where vaccine conversations are especially heightened and fraught, listen in as Berman explores the phenomenon of the anti-vaccine movement—and suggests a strategy for countering them. Jonathan Berman is Assistant Professor in the Department of Basic Sciences at NYITCOM-Arkansas. His writing has been featured on New Scientist, Harvard Business Review, TEDxSanAntonio, and others. An active science communicator, he served as national cochair of the 2017 March for Science, host of the unveiling of the world’s largest periodic table of the elements, and science fair judge. You can follow him on Twitter @jonathanberman. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780262539326 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.
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