1. Focus

Tagged Articles: Science

John Ballentine

Encore: Why Does the World Exist?

Guest: Jim Holt.

Author Jim Holt is not satisfied with the regular responses to the question "Why are we here?" There are many more possible answers, says Holt, than the old God versus the Big Bang debate would suggest. This hour on Focus, we'll listen back to a conversation with Holt about his new book Why Does the World Exist? He'll talk about his correspondence with philosophers, physicists, and a Buddhist monk in his quest for big answers.

Encore: The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Guest: Rebecca Skloot.

She was a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells—taken without her knowledge in 1951—would become one of the most important tools of modern medicine, used to develop the polio vaccine, gene mapping, cloning, and more. Today on Focus, Rebecca Skloot joins the show to tell the story of Henrietta Lacks, the medical revolution that she unknowingly launched, and the ethics one must consider when it comes to our bodies and medicine.

Encore: Long for This World: The Strange Science of Immortality

Guest: Jonathan Weiner.

In the twentieth century alone, the human life expectancy has increased by more than thirty years. Some scientists believe that it's time for the next big leap—this time into complete immortality. Today on Focus, science writer Jonathan Weiner joins the show to explain some of the science behind this heart-pounding research and the dramatic tale of how aging may be conquered once and for all—even in this lifetime.