Salt Lake City, UT – Considered a propogandist by some and a revolutionary by others, Upton Sinclair's writing blurred the lines between life, politics and art. He published over 90 books, but is perhaps best known for The Jungle, his 1906 expose of the inhuman working conditions in Chicago's stockyards. In the new book "Radical Innocent," biographer Anthony Arthur looks at the social activism that informed Sinclair's writing, and that helped him transform a nation.
If you were into obscure, but raw music, there was one brief moment in the early 90s when Utah's underground music scene really lived up to its name. They called it punk, but that wasn't the best way of defining the sound. Some of these musicians came out of hardcore straight edge bands. They fused coarse riffs with atonal jazz and hard rock. In the process, they also developed a tight community infused with a remarkable energy. Doug talks with veterans of Salt Lake's punk scene Tuesday on RadioWest.
Washington, DC – It's been called a new Cold War. About 40-percent of all the people on earth live in two countries -- India and China. The economies of those countries are growing exponentially, and both nations have beefed up their military arsenals over the past 20 years. These nations are siphoning off service sector computer jobs from Utah, and that concerns the state's lawmakers in Congress. In the first of a special two-part series, Chad Pergram reports from Capitol Hill.
Salt Lake City, UT – Earlier this month, Brigham Young University ended its contract with Jeffrey Nielsen following a Salt Lake Tribune op-ed piece in which Nielsen publicly criticized the LDS Church's stand on gay marriage. The case brings up many questions of academic freedom. Doug is joined by professors from the University of Utah, Notre Dame, Brigham Young University and Utah Valley State College to look at the role of the teacher to challenge -- and respect -- their students and their community.
Salt Lake City, UT – Utah legend tells of caverns filled with caches of Spanish Gold hidden before the arrival of Escalante and Dominguez. Since then, there have been those who have hunted for and those who have even claimed to have found these lost treasures. Doug and guests Lee Nelson, Will Bagley and Ken Sanders explore what the oral histories tell us and how those stack up to the academic view of our state's past. (Repeat)
Salt Lake City, UT – Journalist Tom Zoellner knows all too well the emotional meaning diamonds can carry with them. When his fiancee returned the only diamond he had ever bought, Zoellner visited 6 continents and 14 nations in search of answers. The result is The Heartless Stone, an investigation of the diamond industry from mine to finger. Zoellner will be in Salt Lake tomorrow, and today he joins Doug to talk about the machine that used a pretty hunk of carbon to change cultures and societies around the world.
Salt Lake City, UT – Someone once told producer Jeff Rice that if you howl at a coyote, it just might howl back. In the interest of reportorial research-- or idle speculation-- he found himself out in the sagebrush testing this theory. He has this audio postcard for the Utah Soundscapes series.
Salt Lake City – Philosophy Professor Jeffrey Nielsen knew the risks when he publicly criticized The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' position on gay marriage. Just four days after his op-ed piece ran in the Salt Lake Tribune, Nielsen - himself an active member of the Church - was in effect fired by BYU. Wednesday on RadioWest, Nielsen joins Doug Fabrizio to talk about what he calls the moral imperatives that compelled him to speak out, and the risks of taking such a stand.
Washington, DC – The U-S Senate is celebrating Flag Day this year by preparing to debate a constitutional amendment that would ban flag burning. Supporters say protecting the symbol of freedom is of vital importance to the nation. Opponents say this is another move by the ruling party to shore up support among the Republican base. Utah's Senators are split on the issue, as Benjamin Shaw reports from Capitol Hill.
Salt Lake City, UT – KUER is celebrating Father's Day by airing stories through the week about fathers. The first comes from Joshua Killpatrick, who sees his father's tools and willingness to fix things rather than throw them away as a difference between them, but also a bond.
Salt Lake City, UT – What does it take to get a classical music video to surpass the number of times Madonna's lastest single was streamed? It takes the fresh energy and sound that the hip, Utah-based piano quintet "The 5 Browns" brings to music as diverse as Stravinsky, Dvorak, Copland and Lowell Liebermann. The family is preparing for a world tour of their new album "No Boundaries," and Tuesday on RadioWest, they join Doug to talk about their passion for music and the art that unites them.
Salt Lake City, UT – The Grandmother Project has seen startling results in helping to promote health and social change in developing countries. KUER's Jenny Brundin speaks to Judi Aubel on how the project is reach families through its focus on older women.
Salt Lake City, UT – Cochlear implants have been available for children since 1985. They are small electronic devices that can help those who are deaf to hear. There are 36,000 people in the United States who have the implants. Most of them are children. But until recently, cochlear implants were considered experimental and insurance companies wouldn't cover them. One Utah family has led the battle to get that coverage in Utah. Producer Sheri Quinn reports.
Salt Lake City, Ut – Scientists say there are parallels between the way that humans learn to speak and the way that songbirds learn to sing. University of Utah biology professor Franz Goller studies the physiology and singing behavior of birds. Utah Soundscapes producer Jeff Rice spoke with him for this week's audio field guide.
Washington, DC – President George W. Bush is pushing the benefits of nuclear power again. But leaders in Congress are increasingly expressing doubts about the viability of a planned nuclear waste site at Yucca Mountain--especially representatives from Western States. Some experts say nuclear power companies won't break ground on new plants until the nuclear waste dilemma is resolved. Laura Strickler reports from our Capitol Hill bureau.
Salt Lake City, UT – This year's Utah Pride events lured thousands of festival goers and parade spectators to downtown Salt Lake City yesterday. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered Utahns and their supporters came to celebrate this year's festival theme: Pride, Not Prejudice. KUER's Tasha Cook has more on this story:
Fort Duchesne, UT – In past generations, less than half of Utah's Ute Indian population graduated from high school. The situation is looking somewhat better today, thanks to the pressure put on public schools by school accountability laws such as No Child Left Behind. Efforts by the Ute tribe itself are also making a substantial difference, including their own high school in Fort Duchesne. KUER's Dan Bammes reports.
Salt Lake City, UT – Tom Hodgkinson argues that the Western addiction to work has resulted in a lot of ill health, debt and anxiety. In his book How to Be Idle, he seeks to recover an alternative tradition - one that says not only is idleness good, but that it is essential for a pleasurable life. Hodgkinson joins Doug Fabrizio to make the case for doing less with your life. (Repeat)
Salt Lake City, UT – Each week at this time, KUER brings you Utah Soundscapes, audio postcards from around the state and region. Today, Jeff Rice talks with Emmy award-winning nature recordist Gordon Hempton.