Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Listening ideas for 16 March 2011

Rear Vision
Gambling on Sport
According to Olympics chief Jacques Rogge, illegal betting on sport generates a global turnover of around $140 billion a year and threatens the credibility of sport. Perfectly legal gambling can also lead to corruption and distort results. Rear Vision looks at the history of the relationship between gambling and sport.
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Irish History Podcast
A history of St. Patrick and Ireland’s conversion to Christianity
Around the world on March 17th, millions of people will attend St Patrick’s day parades in memory of the man who supposedly “converted the Irish to Christianity”. He is a figure shrouded in mystery and myth but in this podcast we examine the truth behind the one time slave and famous bishop Patrick. Tune in to hear the real history behind Ireland’s conversion, who St. Patrick really was and how he become associated with snakes and shamrocks.
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Wise Counsel
Michael Edelstein, Ph.D. - Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy
Michael R. Edelstein, Ph.D., a Clinical Psychologist and REBT therapist is a protogee of Dr. Albert Ellis, one of the key founders of the modern cognitive behavioral therapy movement. Though today largely overshadowed by Dr. Aaron Beck, Ellis described the basic ideas that continue to inform cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) years before Beck started down that path. Dr. Edelstein's book Three Minute Therapist is a restatement of Ellis' important ideas for non-therapists who are interested in using these techniques as a mode of self-help.
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Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation Podcast
The Synagogue
The central Jewish institution for the past 2000 years has not been a house of God; it has been a house of meeting (beit knesset, or “synagogue”). The synagogue has enabled a dispersed nation to survive, and even to thrive, in very diverse circumstances and surroundings. Discover what the origins of the synagogue can teach us about its current challenges and its future.
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The Christian Humanist Podcast
David Grubbs moderates a conversation about various forms of Biblical and Christian asceticism, including but not limited to monasticism and mendicant orders. As the topics move from historical era to historical era, our focus returns to the possibility of genuine difference from the world that serves the world in its difference. Among the historical figures and texts discussed are Genesis, Leviticus, Saint Anthony, Saint Francis, Chaucer, Martin Luther, Martin Luther King Jr., Saint Jerome, and Freud.
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London School of Economics: Public lectures and events
Israeli Society and the Occupation
Gideon Levy is a Haaretz columnist and a member of the newspaper's editorial board. In his lecture he will explore how Israeli society deals with the occupation and with the international criticism of this. He will also examine the role of the Israeli media in supporting the occupation. Gideon Levy joined Haaretz in 1982, and spent four years as the newspaper's deputy editor. He is the author of the weekly Twilight Zone feature, which covers the Israeli occupation in the West Bank and Gaza over the last 25 years, as well as the writer of political editorials for the newspaper. Levy was the recipient of the Euro-Med Journalist Prize for 2008; the Leipzig Freedom Prize in 2001; the Israeli Journalists' Union Prize in 1997; and The Association of Human Rights in Israel Award for 1996. His new book, The Punishment of Gaza, has just been published by Verso Publishing House in London and New York.
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Entitled Opinions
Greek Tragedy
Robert Harrison discusses Greek Tragedy with Rush Rehm Professor of Drama and Classics at Stanford University.
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A reminder of the great BBC podcasts

Regular readers of this blog may be well aware of the two great history podcasts the BBC has been producing that I admire and recommend whole-heartedly, but only recently I ran into someone who somehow had missed out on one of them and was so happy with my recommendation, that I learned once again that the really good stuff cannot be mentioned often enough.

A History of the World in a 100 Objects
The director of the British Museum, Neil McGregor takes us in 100 episodes through the history of mankind and uses objects from the museum as an illustration. This is not only most original, it is also enlightening and we can trust the BBC to produce such a podcast at the highest standard. Contrary to regular BBC podcast policy, all of the chapters are downloadable.
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In Our Time
Each week Melvyn Bragg meets with three top of the bill specialists to discuss one subject from the history of ideas. Over the years I have been advising to keep your subscription to this podcast active at all times as the BBC used to remove each issue after one week. This season however has remained available ever since it started in its entirety. Go back and take your pick, if you have not done so yet. Enjoy Maimonides, or Free Will, or The Industrial Revolution (two parts), or Daoism, or The Volga Vikings or Imaginary Numbers and more.
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Age of Unequals - Big Ideas

There is also a Philosophy Bites issue in which Alex Voorhoeve argues what is bad about inequality, but that is more on a theoretical level. (see Three issues of Philosophy Bites)

Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett took on the practical approach and collected data from all over the world and compared the social fabric of societies where equality is greater to those where inequality is greater, as far as wealth is concerned. On Big Ideas you can hear a lecture in which Wilkinson brings that point with a stream of examples home. What is interesting to find out is that not only is inequality bad for the poor. In societies where there is greater inequality there is more crime, more psychiatric disorder and people are less happier and live less longer and this affects the rich as well.

More Big Ideas:
Dan Dennett: what should replace religion?,
Chris Hedges,
Needham about China,
The Reluctant Fundamentalist,
Ayaan Hirsi Ali and the quest against Islam.