28 November 2008

Little Atoms with Marcus Chown

On this week's show Neil Denny talks to Marcus Chown.

Marcus Chown is an award-winning writer and broadcaster. A former radio astronomer at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, he is now cosmology consultant of the weekly science magazine New Scientist. Marcus has written a number of popular science books, including "The Magic Furnace", "The Universe Next Door" and "The Never-ending Days of Being Dead". His latest book is "Quantum Theory Cannot Hurt You".

20 November 2008

Little Atoms with Adam Curtis

On this week's show Neil Denny and Padraig Reidy will be joined in the studio by film-maker Adam Curtis.

Adam Curtis is a producer, writer and director of television documentaries such as Pandora's Box, The Mayfair Set, The Century of the Self, The Power of Nightmares and The Trap. Curtis' programs, though always about serious issues, maintain a sense of tongue-in-cheek humour and are characteristic in their extensive use of archive footage. In his film making, Curtis strives to to find meaningful connections between historical situations and often focuses on the impact different ideologies have had on modern society.

13 November 2008

Little Atoms with Colin Blakemore

On this week's show Neil Denny talks to Colin Blakemore.

Colin Blakemore, FMedSci, FRCP (Hon), FIBiol (Hon), FRS, is Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of Magdalen College Oxford. He also holds a Professorship at the University of Warwick and is Chairman of the Neuroscience Research Partnership in Singapore. He was recently appointed as Chair of the Food Standards Agency’s new General Advisory Committee on Science. From 2003-2007 he was Chief Executive of the Medical Research Council.

Colin Blakemore studied Medical Sciences at Cambridge and completed a PhD at the University of California, Berkeley. After working for 11 years in Cambridge, he moved to Oxford as Waynflete Professor of Physiology in 1979, and from 1996-2003 he was also Director of the Centre for Cognitive Neuroscience. His research has been concerned with many aspects of vision, early development of the brain and plasticity of the cerebral cortex. His prizes include the Robert Bing Prize from the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences, the Prix Netter from the French Académie Nationale de Médecine, the Gregg Medal of the Royal Australian College of Ophthalmologists, the John P. McGovern Science and Society Medal from Sigma Xi, the international Alcon Prize for vision research and the Royal Society Michael Faraday Prize. He has been President and Chairman of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, and President of the British Neuroscience Association, the Physiological Society and the Biosciences Federation.

Colin has been actively involved in the public communication of science for more than 30 years. He is a frequent broadcaster on radio and television, has published a number of books about science for a general readership, and he writes for the national and international media. He works with and for the Science Museum, London, the European Dana Alliance for the Brain, the Cheltenham Festival of Science, the Science Media Centre and Sense about Science. He is President of the Association of British Science Writers.

07 November 2008

Little Atoms with Susan Jacoby

On this week's show Neil Denny and Padraig Reidy talk to writer Susan Jacoby.

Susan Jacoby is an independent scholar whose work now focuses on American intellectual history, the author began her writing career as a reporter for The Washington Post.

Jacoby's Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism (2004), was hailed in The New York Times as an "ardent and insightful work" that "seeks to rescue a proud tradition from the indifference of posterity." Named a notable nonfiction book of 2004 by The Washington Post and The Los Angeles Times, Freethinkers was cited in England as one of the outstanding international books of the year by the Times Literary Supplement and The Guardian.

The author's previous books, include Moscow Conversations (1972), based on her experiences in Moscow from 1969 to 1971. Among her other books are Wild Justice: The Evolution of Revenge (Harper & Row), a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 1984, and Half-Jew: A Daughter's Search for Her Family's Buried Past (Scribner, 2000). Susan's latest book is The Age of American Unreason: Dumbing Down and the Future of Democracy.

Jacoby has been a contributor for more than 25 years, on topics including law, religion, medicine, aging, women's rights, political dissent in the Soviet Union, and Russian literature, to a wide range of periodicals and newspapers. Her articles and essays have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Washington Post Book World, Los Angeles Times Book Review, Newsday , Harper's, The Nation, Vogue, The American Prospect, Mother Jones, and the AARP Magazine, among other publications. They have been reprinted in numerous anthologies of columns and magazine articles.

She is also program director of the Center for Inquiry-New York City, a rationalist think tank and a regular panelist for On Faith, a Web site sponsored by The Washington Post and Newsweek. She also has her own political blog, The Secularist's Corner on the Web site of The Washington Post.