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A deeply embedded idea in our culture is the sexist notion that men are the “default” human, and women the unknowable “other". Nowhere is this more visible than in the history of medicine, with disastrous consequences for women’s’ health. On the show this week to discuss her new book is Elinor Cleghorn, author of Unwell Women: Misdiagnosis and Myth…
 
This week on Factually we’re re-releasing one of our favorite episodes. Entomologist and professor Akito Kawahara joins Adam to discuss why insects are disappearing at an alarming rate, how humans must play a critical role in their survival, and how incredible insects truly are. Happy Holidays!By Earwolf & Adam Conover
 
Even though the COVID-19 vaccines were born of publicly-funded research, our privatized medical system has left them to for-profit companies like Pfizer to distribute, giving these private companies massive power in a time of great need. On the show this week to dive into the ways Pfizer has used and abuse its power is Financial Times global pharma…
 
As humans, we like to believe that we shape the natural world. But in reality, its laws and patterns have deeply structured our own society. To tell the story of how water has shaped humanity, on the show this week is Giulio Boccaletti, author of Water: A Biography. Check it out at http://factuallypod.com/books…
 
“Orwellian” has become such an overused adjective that we’ve forgotten what George actually believed and cared about. In her new book, Orwell's Roses, Rebecca Solnit argues that George Orwell's love of gardening reveals striking facets of his character and his work. You can check out Orwell’s Roses at factuallypod.com/books.…
 
It’s impossible to discuss the history of Cuba without talking about the history of America; the stories of the nations are simply too intertwined. To unpack this complex and fascinating history, on the show this week is Professor Ada Ferrer. You can check out her book, Cuba: An American History, at factuallypod.com/books.…
 
No periods in history are more fascinating than those moments when the status quo is overthrown and everything changes. This week, podcaster and author Mike Duncan is on the show to discuss why revolutions happen and what unfolds in their aftermath. You can check out his book, Hero Of Two Worlds, at factuallypod.com/books.…
 
When telling the history of our species, why do so many writers keep regurgitating the same centuries-old just-so story? If we had a more accurate, truer account of our origins, how would it change our understanding of our society and ourselves? To answer this question, on the show this week is archaeologist David Wengrow, co-author with the late a…
 
Human beings have long been afraid of the "other." But is this fear ingrained in our psyche, or a product of our surroundings? And where does the word even come from? To answer, on the show this week is historian and psychiatrist George Makari. Check out his book Of Fear and Strangers: A History of Xenophobia, at http://factuallypod.com/books…
 
Once one party totally controls the government in a state or city, it should be easy for that party to pass all the laws it wants to, right? Well, wrong. Single party rule can actually make it harder to enact policy. On the show this week, UC Riverside’s professor Stan Oklobdzija explains why.By Earwolf & Adam Conover
 
Many musicians and fans reject genre labels as narrow-minded restrictions on what music can be. But what if the opposite is true? What if our notions of genre actually shape what it means to make and enjoy music on a fundamental level? Joining Adam on the show today is journalist and music critic Kelefa Sanneh. Check out his book Major Labels at fa…
 
The right to an abortion has been in legal limbo in America for years. What does the passage of SB8 in Texas mean for abortion access in this country, and what is the future of Roe v. Wade? On the show this week to answer this question is Professor Mary Ziegler. You can check out her book, Abortion and the Law in America: Roe v. Wade to the Present…
 
Crows may seem like garbage birds that only live to pick through trash on your street, but they're actually some of the most intelligent animals on Earth, with complex social relations and a bona fide culture. On the show this week Anne B. Clark, Professor at Binghamton University joins Adam to talk about what makes these feathered friends so freak…
 
With the rise of mobile payment services and cryptocurrencies, money is at a moment of profound transformation. What is happening to money now, and where is it headed? On the show this week is Senior Professor of Trade Policy at Cornell University Eswar Prasad. You can check out his book, The Future of Money: How the Digital Revolution is Transform…
 
We've suddenly gone from a world with little antitrust enforcement to one in which strong anti-monopoly action has broad bipartisan support. How did this happen? Today senior reporter at Huffington Post Zachary Carter is on the show to help answer this question. You can check out his book at factuallypod.com/books.…
 
This week on Factually we're re-releasing one of our favorite episodes, in which Adam and renowned behavioral neuroscientist Judith Grisel discuss their battles with addiction, the neuroscience of how substance dependence works in the brain, and how the brain changes after recovery.By Earwolf & Adam Conover
 
The California Camp Fire was the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California's history. This week investigative reporter Lizzie Johnson is on the show to discuss her firsthand experience reporting on the fire and its destruction. You can check out her book, Paradise: One Town's Struggle to Survive an American Wildfire, at factuallypod.com…
 
In just a few years, the Chinese government has wiped out the political freedoms once promised to Hong Kong. How did this happen, and what is next for the city? On the show this week to help answer these questions is Notre Dame professor and Hong Kong native Victoria Hui. Check out her twitter @victoriatinbor and learn more about Hong Kong's fight …
 
Ever since he was diagnosed as a kid, Adam has wondered if ADHD is a serious psychological condition, or a false diagnosis pushed by an overzealous industry. This week Dr. Stephen Hinshaw, Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley is on the show to help answer these questions. You can check out his book The ADHD Explosion: M…
 
Seashells may seem like a small topic for a book, or a podcast. But when we look into them deeply, we find that they reveal startling truths about our oceans, our planet, and ourselves. This week Cynthia Barnett joins Adam to talk about the surprising history of seashells and her new book The Sound of The Sea. You can check out her book at factuall…
 
What are our moral obligations to nature, and the wild animals that live in it? Should we vaccinate them? Should we feed them when they're starving? Should we kill so called "invasive" species? Emma Marris is back this week to discuss her new book Wild Souls and the complex ethical dilemmas surrounding our relationship with wild animals. You can ch…
 
Tesla and other automakers have convinced the public that fully automated vehicles are just around the corner. But what if … they aren’t? Dr. Missy Cummings, AI researcher and director of the Humans and Autonomy Laboratory at Duke, joins Adam to detail the massive gap between Silicon Valley's promises and the technology’s limitations, and explain t…
 
As nature lovers, we prize the idea of places untouched by human influence. But new research shows that such places were few and far between as long as 12,000 years ago. This week paleo-ecologist Dr. Jacquelyn Gill is on the show to talk about the surprisingly strong effect humans have had on nature for thousands and thousands of years, and how kno…
 
Despite their limited representation in the media, Native Americans have had a profound influence on American comedy. So why isn't Charlie Hill a household name? This week historian Kliph Nesteroff and comic Adrianne Chalepah chat with Adam about their new book We Had A Little Real Estate Problem, which tells the fascinating story of Native America…
 
Quantum mechanics is over a century old, yet most of us still struggle to truly understand it. This week theoretical physicist Carlo Rovelli is on the show to discuss his new book Helgoland and help Adam begin to truly understand how quantum physics can fit into a broader picture of reality. Check out Carlo's book at factuallypod.com/books.…
 
This week Adam welcomes an author whose book blew his mind more than perhaps any other. Americans are typically taught that prior to the arrival of European settlers, indigenous communities were sparsely populated, lacked technology, and did little to shape the natural landscape. But as this week’s guest Charles C. Mann’s 1491 tells Adam, the most …
 
If you love video games, working in game development sounds like a dream job — especially since the industry now grosses more than movies and sports combined. But the reality is a lot less… fun than you might think. This week journalist Jason Schreier joins Adam to discuss his latest book Press Reset: Ruin and Recovery in the Video Game Industry. I…
 
Voting rights are under assault around the country. And while we tend to see “democracy" as a big, abstract noun, it’s the smallest, most mundane details that determine whether or not people actually have the right to vote. This week Adam sits down with Tomas Lopez, executive director of Democracy North Carolina, a non-partisan organization that wo…
 
It had to happen eventually: We’re doing an episode about crypto. This week artist and technologist Everest Pipkin joins Adam to discuss Bitcoin, the blockchain, and the dire costs of crypto art, not only on our environment, but on the art community itself. Find Everest Pipkin’s art at https://everest-pipkin.com.…
 
Facebook pushes dangerous misinformation to billions of people every day. So why can’t it… stop? This week, MIT Technology Review’s Senior AI Reporter, Karen Hao, joins Adam to detail her blockbuster report on how Facebook’s internal AI teams were instructed to stop fighting misinformation because doing so interfered with Facebook’s growth. Read he…
 
It's Factually's 100th episode! To celebrate, Adam is joined by Full Frontal host Sam Bee to discuss the art of combining fact with farce. They talk the importance (or total unimportance) of informational comedy, consider what lies ahead in their careers, and dunk on sitcoms. Sam Bee's podcast "Full Release" launches May 4th. Listen wherever you ge…
 
There are a lot of causes of the declining global birth rate – education, freedom, and even the decline of subsistence agriculture. But what if one of the biggest factors was … plastic? Epidemiologist and author Dr. Shanna Swan joins Adam this week to break down why phthalates affect our fertility as well as our overall health. They cover her scien…
 
Clothes today cost a fraction of what they cost our grandparents — but why, and at what cost? Journalist and author Dana Thomas joins Adam to break down how fast fashion has made the industry explode into a one-trillion dollar industry, how dismal the working conditions are in many overseas factories, and how to shop and dress more sustainably. To …
 
We’re flooded with misinformation, and new research shows that cliches about “thinking critically” and “doing your own research” are counterproductive at best. Writer and educator Michael Caulfield joins Adam this week to explain his SIFT method for evaluating misinformation, why expertise is so important, and how we should approach unclear ideas l…
 
Why is America's health care system so effed up, and what can be done to fix it? Author, physician, and civil servant Dr. Abdul El-Sayed joins Adam to discuss how we got here, his belief in single-payer healthcare, and why he's hopeful for the road ahead. His book Medicare For All: A Citizen’s Guide is available wherever books are sold.…
 
Journalist and author of "Fulfillment", Alec MacGillis, joins Adam this week to discuss how Amazon’s unprecedented and wide-spread growth has reshaped our economy and society. They cover the economic changes that created a vacuum for Amazon to fill; how economic concentration hurts both "winners" and losers; the lack of community and dignity Amazon…
 
Adam is thrilled to introduce one of his absolute favorite journalists and authors to the show: Pulitzer Prize winner and author of the The Sixth Extinction, Elizabeth Kolbert. They discuss how humans have transformed the planet even more profoundly than we imagine; the dirty work of eliminating invasive species; how even getting to net zero emissi…
 
No feature of the American landscape is more absurd than the border. It cuts across natural landscapes, is highly militarized, and possesses the largest law enforcement agency in America. Why? Journalist and Author Todd Miller joins Adam to explain why the heck Border Patrol got involved with the BLM protests last June, what “check point trauma” me…
 
We often frame the fight against climate change as one of endless sacrifice. But the truth is, the real solutions to climate change would both save money and make our lives better. Scientist, inventor, and energy expert Saul Griffith joins Adam to walk us through why electric power is more efficient, powerful, and affordable long-term; how the “sca…
 
Where do cities… come from? Are they created by committee? Or do they just spring up out of the earth? Adam explores this question with journalist Annalee Newitz, author of the new book Four Lost Cities: A Secret History of the Urban Age. They take an audio tour from Cahokia, an indigenous city near St. Louis that somehow got left out of American t…
 
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