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KERA Think Rundown – Week of 5/07/12

General, KERA News, KERA Radio, News Releases 82

Think airs Monday to Thursday from 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m. on KERA FM. Encore airings of Think can be heard Monday to Thursday nights on KERA FM beginning at 9:00 p.m. Podcasts and streamed video are available online at

Monday, 5/07

Hour 1: KERA News Special: What is the risk for political corruption in Texas?  A national report says it’s pretty high. It gives Texas a grade of D+ on issues that could affect government accountability. This hour, KERA’s Shelley Kofler will take a look at two factors the report considered. Dallas Attorney Paul Watler with the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas, will talk about the difficulties getting public information. And Craig McDonald with Texans for Public Justice will discuss how campaign finance laws in Texas have fewer limitations than many states.

Hour 2:  From the Think archive – What foods do you crave when you’re far away from home? Our guest this hour missed the food in Texas so much, she wrote a cookbook to satisfy any appetite. We’ll listen back to our conversation from last fall this hour with Lisa Fain, certified barbeque judge and author of “The Homesick Texan Cookbook” (Hyperion, 2011).

Tuesday, 5/08

Hour 1:  How are machines and robots evolving and what impact might they have on our lives in the future? We’ll talk this hour with John Long, Professor of Biology and Cognitive Science at Vassar College and author of the new book “Darwin’s Devices: What Evolving Robots Can Teach Us About the History of Life and the Future of Technology” (Basic Books, 2012).

Hour 2:  How are photography, literature, critical literary thought, and poetry related? We’ll spend this hour with Roberto Tejada, PhD, poet and Endowed Professor of Art History at SMU and Jessica May, PhD, associate curator of photographs at the Amon Carter Museum of American Art. They’ll take the conversation even further with a discussion later this week at the Amon Carter in conjunction with the current exhibit The Medium and its Metaphors.

Wednesday, 5/09

Hour 1:  What are the challenges of growing up in a family that some people see as non-traditional? We’ll talk this hour with Zach Wahls, whose 2011 speech before the Iowa House of Representatives has been viewed millions and millions of times on the Internet. His new book is “My Two Moms: Lessons of Love, Strength, and What Makes a Family” (Gotham Books, 2012).

Hour 2:  Who was the real Aaron Burr? We’ll look beyond his famous duel with rival Alexander Hamilton this hour with H.W. Brands, the Dickson Allen Anderson Centennial Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin, and author of the new book “The Heartbreak of Aaron Burr” (Anchor, 2012). Brands will speak to the Dallas Museum of Art’s Arts & Letters Live tonight.

Thursday, 5/10

Hour 1:  What’s the best way to learn to cook and just how hard is it to make delicious food at home? We’ll spend this hour with food and cooking authority Mark Bittman, whose new book is “How to Cook Everything The Basics: All You Need to Make Great Food” (Wiley, 2012). Bittman will speak at Temple Emanu-el this evening.

Hour 2:  How did humans develop a moral sense and why do people engage in self-sacrifice and altruism? We’ll talk this hour with Christopher Boehm, Director of the Jane Goodall Research Center and Professor of Anthropology and Biological Sciences at the University of Southern California. His new book is “Moral Origins: The Evolution of Virtue, Altruism, and Shame” (Basic Books, 2012).