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Most Recent Episodes

Staying Calm In A Crisis

Much of the time, we have little control over events that negatively affect our lives. We do, however, have some say in how we react to our worlds being turned upside down. This hour, we'll talk about how to think clearly and keep our feelings in check during a crisis with Harvard Medical School psychologist Susan David. She's the author of "Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life" (Avery).

Why We Need Rest

We all feel more productive when well-rested. So why is our downtime such a low priority? This hour, we'll talk about the idea of "deliberate rest" – and about strategies to incorporate it into our busy schedules – with Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, a visiting scholar at Stanford. He writes about the topic in "Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less" (Basic Books).

The Search For The Chibok Girls

Two years ago, 276 school girls were kidnapped in Nigeria by Boko Haram. Since then, some have been freed, others escaped and at least six have died. This hour, we'll talk about how the kidnapping has affected families – and about ongoing efforts to rescue the remaining students – with Helon Habila. He's the author of "The Chibok Girls: The Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria" (Columbia Global Reports).

The Politics Of The White Working Class

In the 20th Century, the white working class occupied the political and economic middle in both the United States and Great Britain. This hour, we'll talk about how many in this demographic have come to feel disenfranchised and taken up positions on the political margins with George Mason University's Justin Gest. He's the author of "The New Minority: White Working Class Politics in an Era of Immigration and Inequality" (Oxford).

The Consciousness Of Cephalopods

Dolphins, chimpanzees and other mammals are among the smartest creatures on Earth. Deep in the ocean, though, lives another class of highly intelligent animals – cephalopods. This hour, we'll talk about how the octopus and its close relatives were likely the first to develop a complex nervous system – and about how that evolution took place independent of land animals – with City University of New York professor Peter Godfrey-Smith. He's the author of "Other Minds: The Octopus, the Sea, and the Deep Origins of Consciousness" (Farrar Straus and Giroux).

The Casino Trap

When a gambler steps into a casino, nearly every element of these buildings is designed to keep the player playing. This hour, we'll talk about how this can be particularly tough on gambling addicts with John Rosengren. His story "How Casinos Enable Gambling Addicts" appears in the December issue of The Atlantic magazine.

The Distracted Mind

The ability to multitask is a virtue in our plugged-in society. That's not how our brains are built to function, though. This hour, we'll talk about strategies for working on one task at a time – and about how we can block out the interference that keeps us from getting things done – with Adam Gazzaley, director of the Neuroscience Imaging Center at UC-San Francisco. He writes about the topic in "The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World" (MIT Press).

How To Overcome Passive-Aggression

When we hide or anger from friends, family and co-workers, we set ourselves up for larger problems going forward. This hour, we'll talk about how to deal with conflict directly with Dr. Tim Murphy, co-author of "Overcoming Passive-Aggression: How to Stop Hidden Anger from Spoiling Your Relationships, Career, and Happiness" (Da Capo).

The Republic Of Spin

Woodrow Wilson held the first presidential press conference in the White House in 1913. This hour, we'll talk about how every administration since then has used these interactions as opportunities to craft the messages they want the American public to hear with Rutgers University presidential historian David Greenberg. He writes about the topic in "Republic of Spin: An Inside History of the American Presidency" (W.W. Norton and Co.).

How To Save Money

This month, shoppers across the country are hitting stores and online retailers in search of holiday deals. This hour, we'll get practical advice for stretching our dollars from David Pogue. His newest book is called "Pogue's Basics: Money – Essential Tips and Shortcuts (That No One Bothers to Tell You)" (Flatiron Books).

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