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Hold That Thought

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United States

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From anthropology to art history, from physics to philosophy - Hold That Thought is your home to explore a world of ideas. Every week, we ask world-class researchers from Washington University in St. Louis to share their passions and discoveries.

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English

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3149356823


Episodes

Moms at Work: Policies and Perspectives in Europe and the US

9/6/2017
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Sociologist Caitlyn Collins frequently remembers a familiar phrase from her childhood. Collins’ mom, a successful sales director, often said with a sigh: “If we were in Europe, this would be so much easier!” So, was Collins’ mom correct? Are the lives of working mothers that much easier in Europe? Collins now investigates how public policies affect family life in both Europe and the US. She shares some of her findings on the laws and cultural attitudes that shape women's careers and lives.

Duration: 00:16:29


How to Sit on the Iron Throne: Power and Violence in "Game of Thrones" and History

7/26/2017
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Rival families fight for the throne by racking up the body count through political maneuvers, murders, battles, and betrayals. This summation is true as much for the hit HBO series "Game of Thrones" as it is for history, specifically the Atlantic world of early modern era. Historian Alex Dubé examines how our understandings of power and violence have fundamentally changed over time, and what modern day shows like "Game of Thrones" tell us about the present. Does absolute power corrupt...

Duration: 00:16:46


High-School Students Should Study Earth Science. Here's Why.

4/20/2017
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Ever wonder why some subjects are taught in high school while others are not, or why students spend so much time memorizing facts? According to geophysicist Michael Wysession, science curricula in the US are based on standards that are more than 120 years old, and being stuck in the past has had serious consequences. This Earth Day, learn why Wysession believes in a new approach to science education.

Duration: 00:11:05


Making Sense of Klansville

4/6/2017
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During the civil rights era, North Carolina was home to more dues-paying Klan members than the rest of the South combined. When conducting research on this chapter of history for his acclaimed book Klansville, USA, sociologist David Cunningham encountered the work of a journalist named Pete Young, who in the 1960s attempted to understand what was happening in North Carolina. Cunningham shares some of this history and describes how Young's insights could hold lessons for today.

Duration: 00:16:44


Mapping Asthma: The Geography of Inequality

3/23/2017
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Kelly Harris, a doctoral student in education, uses Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to identify ‘hotspots’ of childhood asthma in St. Louis. Higher asthma rates are linked with lower income levels, and Harris wants to understand why. Through data, she seeks to discover solutions to health inequalities in the St. Louis region and beyond.

Duration: 00:12:15


Right to Work? Unions & Income Inequality

3/8/2017
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Over the past three decades in the United States, the wealth gap between the richest Americans and everyone else has reached new extremes. At the same time, labor union membership has drastically decreased. In his book What Unions No Longer Do, sociologist Jake Rosenfeld argues that you can't understand one trend without the other. Rosenfeld shares ideas from his book and considers what so-called "Right to Work" legislation may mean for the future of organized labor.

Duration: 00:13:42


The Legal Mind of Thomas Jefferson

2/16/2017
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Before becoming the principal author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson was a successful lawyer in Virginia. His legal training influenced the way he thought about government and politics, yet this earlier part of his career has largely been ignored by historians. David Konig, professor of history and law at Washington University in St. Louis, has spent years analyzing the complex legal notes and papers that tell the story of Jefferson's time as an attorney. This...

Duration: 00:10:25


Love Music Across Time

2/8/2017
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From today's top 100 Billboard songs to ancient Sumerian scripts, human beings have always sung about love. So how have love songs changed across the ages? Have they evolved to reflect society's understandings of love? Or have we been singing about basically the same things for millennia? Today, we'll look at one batch of love songs called the Loire Valley Chansonniers, made up of five songbooks from fifteenth-century France. Clare Bokulich, an assistant professor of musicology at...

Duration: 00:25:52


Staging the Blues: The Ma Rainey Story

1/26/2017
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Before film or even audio recordings, audiences across the south flocked to traveling tent shows for entertainment. Under these tents, female performers like Gertrude "Ma" Rainey helped invent and popularize a new type of music: the blues. Paige McGinley, author of Staging the Blues: From Tent Shows to Tourism, brings these elaborate performances to life and explains why they are so often forgotten.

Duration: 00:12:53


Performing Emotion: Freemasons and the Theater of Ritual

1/19/2017
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Hundreds of years ago in France, a group of men set up dramatic lighting, put on costumes, read scripts, and acted out a dramatic story. Despite all these elements of the theater, the men were not performing for an audience or acting on a stage. This group of Masons, one of many in 18th-century France, met in secret and created elaborate performances to initiate and promote their members. Pannill Camp, associate professor of drama and co-host of On TAP: A Theater and Performing Arts...

Duration: 00:16:33


Performing Gold: Fanny Kemble, Modern Banking, and the Evolution of Acting

12/15/2016
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When actress Fanny Kemble took the stage in 1831 as Bianca, the pure and mistreated wife in Henry Milman's play Fazio, she astounded audiences with her true-to-life portrayal of jealousy and grief. Julia Walker, associate professor of drama and English at Washington University in St. Louis, brings the performance to life and explains why it was so extraordinary. Walker connects Kemble's acting style to historical events and anxieties, especially changing ideas about money and banking.

Duration: 00:12:55


Who Should Sing 'Ol' Man River'?

12/8/2016
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What can one Broadway tune reveal about the history of American race relations? In his book "Who Should Sing Ol' Man River?: The Lives of an American Song," musicologist Todd Decker explores how the meaning of "Ol' Man River" has been reshaped over time. Discover the song's surprising journey from Broadway ballad to pop anthem, dance ditty, activist anthem, and beyond. (A version of this episode was first released in 2013.)

Duration: 00:10:12


Pilgrim Fathers, How The Thanksgiving We Know And Love Was Manufactured

11/23/2016
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Thanksgiving is a day most Americans look forward to, a day of watching parades and feasting on delicious food with friends and family. However, the rosy picture we have in our minds of our Pilgrim forefathers sitting down to eat with the local Native American tribes is, frankly, a myth. In honor of the holiday, American religious historian Mark Valeri shares the true and harrowing tales of the Pilgrim immigrants, and how and why their story came to national prominence in the post-Civil...

Duration: 00:14:52


A Chemist's Quest for New Antibiotics

11/14/2016
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Remember the last time you were sick and your doctor gave you antibiotics? What might have happened if those drugs didn't work? As antibiotic-resistant bacteria spread around the world, this scenario is much more than a "what if." The World Health Organization calls antibiotic resistance "one of the biggest threats to global health, food security, and development today." To mark World Antibiotic Awareness Week, chemist TIm Wencewicz explains how we got here, why big pharmaceutical...

Duration: 00:15:48


Social Citizens: How Peer Networks Influence Elections

11/3/2016
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When you walk into a voting booth in less than a week to vote for the future president of the United States, you'll be all by yourself making a very personal decision - right? Betsy Sinclair, a political scientist at Washington University in St. Louis and author of The Social Citizen: Peer Networks and Political Behavior, believes that in reality, politics is often more social than personal. Here she discusses the place of Facebook, YouTube, and face-to-face interactions in political...

Duration: 00:13:10


"Do You Like Scary Movies?" Horror Films & Things That Make Us Scream

10/26/2016
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Horror movies have been drawing audiences since the earliest days of film. But why are we drawn to fictional portrayals of events that we'd do anything to avoid in real life? And are we frightened by the same things we were 20 years ago? John Powers walks us through the history of the horror film genre. From the Frankenstein and Nosferatu to Freddy Krueger and Bruce Campbell, we break down what makes us scream.

Duration: 00:18:13


Slavery at Sea

10/19/2016
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In her new book Slavery at Sea: Terror, Sex, and Sickness in the Middle Passage, historian Sowande' Mustakeem reveals the forgotten world of 18th century slave ships. Here, she shares the tragic story of one enslaved woman and discusses why it's so important for Americans to confront this foundational, brutal chapter of history. Mustakeem's research focuses on the experiences of those most frequently left out of the history of the Middle Passage - women, children, the elderly, and the...

Duration: 00:11:08


The Hidden History of Trumpism

10/13/2016
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In a recent article in the Guardian, postdoctoral fellow Tim Shenk argues that Donald Trump's rise within the Republican Party has historical - and often overlooked - roots. From an obscure online journal to a best-selling book from 1941 and beyond, Shenk traces the hidden and surprising intellectual path of what we now call Trumpism. Understanding this history, Shenk believes, helps illuminate Trump's popularity, his reliance on Twitter, his clashes with fellow Republicans, and more.

Duration: 00:13:43


A Laboratory for the Social Sciences: The American Panel Survey

10/5/2016
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What does the average American voter really think about the 2016 presidential candidates? How much do those beliefs depend on things like income, education level, or even personality? With the American Panel Survey (or TAPS), social scientists have a powerful tool to explore questions about human beliefs and behaviors over time. This year, researchers are using TAPS to learn about why voters choose certain candidates over others, and when and why they sometimes change their minds. Steven...

Duration: 00:11:39


How to Forecast an Election

9/29/2016
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It's about six weeks until the 2016 US presidential election, and everyone wants to know: Who will win? Hillary Clinton? Or Donald Trump? To attempt to answer this question, political scientists like Jacob Montgomery build complex forecasting models. Montgomery shares his own unique approach to forecasting, and describes both the limitations and the value of these efforts to predict the future.

Duration: 00:11:01

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