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Each episode of Distillations podcast takes a deep-dive into a moment of science-related history in order to shed light on the present.

Each episode of Distillations podcast takes a deep-dive into a moment of science-related history in order to shed light on the present.
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Location:

United States

Description:

Each episode of Distillations podcast takes a deep-dive into a moment of science-related history in order to shed light on the present.

Language:

English

Contact:

215.925.2222


Episodes

Preview: Fall 2019

8/13/2019
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We're in the thick of producing episodes for our fall season! Here's a taste of what's coming.

Duration:00:04:25

Rare Earths: The Hidden Cost to Their Magic, Part 2

6/25/2019
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The 17 rare earth elements are often called the spices or vitamins of industry. While we don’t need much of them, they’re sprinkled in small amounts through our most powerful, futuristic, and dare we say it, magical tools. They power our iPhones and computers; they’re in wind turbines and hybrid cars. They’re in dental implants, X-ray machines, and life-saving cancer drugs. They have unusual magnetic and electrical properties that make our gadgets faster, stronger, and lighter. And we've all...

Duration:00:31:33

Rare Earths: The Hidden Cost to Their Magic, Part 1

6/25/2019
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The 17 rare earth elements are often called the spices or vitamins of industry. While we don’t need much of them, they’re sprinkled in small amounts through our most powerful, futuristic, and dare we say it, magical tools. They power our iPhones and computers; they’re in wind turbines and hybrid cars. They’re in dental implants, X-ray machines, and life-saving cancer drugs. They have unusual magnetic and electrical properties that make our gadgets faster, stronger, and lighter. And we've all...

Duration:00:25:29

Preview: Rare Earths

6/18/2019
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Rare earths power our modern world. They make the magic happen. But at what cost? Tune in to our next episode on June 25th.

Duration:00:02:18

The Myth of the Cuyahoga River Fire

5/28/2019
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In the summer of 1969 the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio, defied the laws of nature and caught fire. Time covered the event and cemented the fire’s place in national lore. The story that followed says this fire captured the country’s attention and brought to light the environmental hazards not only in Cleveland but in the country as a whole. And it went on to spark the modern environmental movement. This all sounds like such a nice, tidy story. But in reality things were much more...

Duration:00:32:19

High Steaks at the Border

4/23/2019
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When we think about the U.S.-Mexico border, it’s hard not to think about the current immigration conflict and the contentious idea to build a wall. But the concept of a border wall isn’t new: proposals for walls have been made for more than 100 years. Our story starts in 1947, when a group of Texas ranchers demanded a fence along their state’s border with Mexico. Their motivation, though, was to stop an outbreak of a disease that struck farm animals. The response to the crisis was...

Duration:00:40:15

Preview: High Steaks at the Border

4/9/2019
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When Mexico and the United States resolved their beef.

Duration:00:01:43

Making the Deserts Bloom

3/19/2019
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In the late 1950s a Texas town on the Gulf of Mexico was suffering from a devastating, decade-long drought. But while the wells ran dry, the ocean lapped at the town’s shore, taunting the thirsty residents with its endless supply of undrinkable water. Undrinkable, that is, until President John F. Kennedy stepped in to save the day with the promise of science. The evolving technology of desalination wouldn’t just end droughts: it would give us as much water as we wanted. It would allow us to...

Duration:00:36:26

Love, Hate, and Sex from the History of Science

2/12/2019
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This Valentine’s Day we could have just brought you some sappy love stories from science’s past. But instead we offer you three tales of lust, loneliness, betrayal, pettiness, and not one, but two beheadings. Credits Hosts: Alexis Pedrick and Elisabeth Berry Drago Senior Producer: Mariel Carr Producer: Rigoberto Hernandez Reporters: Alexis Pedrick and Elisabeth Berry Drago Audio Engineer: James Morrison Photo illustration by Jay Muhlin Additional audio production by Dan...

Duration:00:38:32

Sex(ism), Drugs, and Migraines

1/15/2019
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Egyptian scriptures from 1200 BCE describe painful, migraine-like headaches, so we know the disorder has afflicted people for at least three thousand years. Still, the condition continues to mystify us today. Anne Hoffman is a reporter, a professor, and a chronic migraine sufferer. She spent the past year tracing the history of migraines, hoping to discover clues about a treatment that actually works for her. The journey took her in some interesting directions. One common theme she found? A...

Duration:00:42:08

Preview: Happy Holidays from Distillations!

12/18/2018
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Happy holidays from all of us here at Distillations. This holiday season our gift to you is a sneak peak at some of the stories we have in the works for 2019.

Duration:00:02:22

The Mouse That Changed Science: A Tiny Animal With a Big Story

11/19/2018
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In April 1988 Harvard University was awarded a patent that was the first of its kind. U.S. Patent Number 4,736,866 was small, white, and furry, with red beady eyes. His name was OncoMouse. The mouse, genetically engineered to have a predisposition for cancer, allowed researchers to study the disease in an intact living organism. It promised to transform cancer research, but not everyone was happy. Most critics were wary of patenting life forms at all. But academic scientists were also...

Duration:00:41:48

Preview: The Mouse that Changed Science

11/13/2018
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Tune in to the next episode of Distillations on November 20th!

Duration:00:01:19

Treating America's Opioid Addiction Part 3: Searching for Meaning in Kensington

10/16/2018
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“We should never, ever forget that addiction treatment is a search for meaning in a place other than using drugs.” —Nancy Campbell, historian of drug addiction (This is the third and final chapter of a three-part series. See Part 1 and Part 2.) In the final chapter of this series we travel to the heart of our modern opioid crisis. In what is now a notorious Philadelphia neighborhood called Kensington, we meet two victims of the epidemic and follow them on two distinct paths toward...

Duration:00:55:22

Treating America’s Opioid Addiction Part 2: Synanon and the Tunnel Back to the Human Race.

9/18/2018
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Our current devastating opioid crisis is unprecedented in its reach and deadliness, but it’s not the first such epidemic the United States has experienced or tried to treat. In fact, it’s the third. Treating America’s Opioid Addiction is a three-part series that investigates how we’ve understood and treated opioid addiction over more than a century. Through the years we’ve categorized opioid addiction as some combination of a moral failure, a mental illness, a biological disease, or a...

Duration:00:44:34

Preview: Treating America's Opioid Addiction, Part 2

8/31/2018
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In our next episode we’re continuing our three-part series on the history of opioid addiction treatment in the United States. And we’re going back to the early 1960s, when the foundations for our modern opioid addiction treatment system were being built--starting with a controversial drug rehabilitation program called Synanon. Tune in to our next episode, Synanon and the Tunnel Back to the Human Race, on September 18.

Duration:00:01:49

Treating America’s Opioid Addiction Part 1: The Narcotic Farm and the Promise of Salvation

8/21/2018
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Our current devastating opioid crisis is unprecedented in its reach and deadliness, but it’s not the first such epidemic the United States has experienced or tried to treat. In fact, it’s the third. Treating America’s Opioid Addiction is a three-part series that investigates how we’ve understood and treated opioid addiction over more than a century. Through the years we’ve categorized opioid addiction as some combination of a moral failure, a mental illness, a biological disease, or a...

Duration:00:32:11

Preview: We're hard at work on our next season!

7/17/2018
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We're hard at work on our next season. Listen to the first episode on August 21st!

Duration:00:01:58