Today on Focus, host Jack Brighton interviews Iris Chang, author of Thread of the Silkworm. The recent book is the definitive biography of Tsien Hsue-Shen, a pioneer of America's space age who was denounced as a communist for unknown reasons, deported, and taken in by the Chinese missile program.
Today on Focus, we're joined by the author of Unearthing Atlantis: An Archaeological Odyssey. Charles Pellegrino synthesizes archaeology, paleontology, history, and literature into one volume as he explores the origins of Atlantis and the stories from which the myth arose. He'll talk about all this and more today on the show.
The Burgess Shale is a small limestone quarry in the Canadian Rockies. Seemingly unobtrusive, it in fact holds the remains of a 530-million-year-old sea and all the creatures that dwelled within it. Paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould joins Focus today to talk about the Burgess Shale and what it can tell us about evolution and natural history.
The oldest hominid skeleton discovered to date, nicknamed "Lucy" by paleontologists, was discovered by paleoanthropologist Donald Johanson in 1973. He joins Focus today to talk about his book Lucy's Child, in which he details his work in the field at the time of the excavation, the controversies surrounding the discovery, and how the spectacular find may contribute to further knowledge of human origins.
Today on Focus, we're joined by University of California—Berkeley professor Ronald Takaki to discuss his new book Strangers from a Different Shore. Takaki explores the history of Asian Americans from the Midwest to Hawaii and how they were—and, in many ways, still are—oppressed by other Americans.
Some of the most iconic scientific figures in history have directly built on and influenced our understanding of astronomy. Today on Focus, we're joined by Timothy Ferris, author of the recent book Coming of Age in the Milky Way. He's researched a number of brilliant scientists who struggled against political and religious forces in their studies of the universe. He'll talk about the history of astronomy and more on the show.