All Episodes


November 30, 2015

Josh Zepps

After the Paris attacks, tensions are running higher than they have in many years over the threat posed by Islamism, how we should talk about it, and how policy should respond to it. One of our most difficult cultural challenges is distinguishing the acts of violent Islamists from public attitudes towards Muslims in general, and …

November 17, 2015

Lindsay Beyerstein

It used to be that autism was considered to be the result of poor parenting, but starting in the 1930s, it was understood to be a hereditary condition, and the behaviors often associated with autism turn out to be present, to one degree or another, in most of us. Though attitudes about autism have changed …

November 10, 2015

Josh Zepps

Is smoking pot a fundamental human right? On Wednesday, November 4th Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled that four individuals involved in a private cannabis club have the constitutional right to grow, sell, and smoke cannabis based on “the right to the free development of one’s personality.” The ruling was limited to the specific individuals who brought …

October 31, 2015

Nora Hurley

Most people know Harry Houdini as the world famous magician and illusionist, but in addition to his life as a performer, Houdini was also known to have a deep fascination with the afterlife. So much so he spent the later part of his career investigating spiritualists and mediums. With the help of his undercover assistant …

October 27, 2015

Josh Zepps

This week Josh Zepps chats about the 2016 Republican presidential primaries with journalist Sarah Posner, a senior correspondent for Religion Dispatches and the author of Gods Profits: Faith, Fraud, and the Republican Crusade for Values Voters. She is an expert in the political machinations of the religious right in the United States. The current GOP …

October 19, 2015

Lindsay Beyerstein

Myths and pseudoscience do not only apply to the realms of religion, alternative medicine, and the paranormal. One area of our lives in which science and a little myth-busting can do enormous good is…cooking! This week Point of Inquiry welcomes Kenji Lopez-Alt, managing culinary director of the website Serious Eats. Kenji suggests we take the …

October 12, 2015

Josh Zepps

With misinformation about vaccines proliferating among certain groups in the U.S., diseases that had previously been thought eradicated are creeping back into American life. As far as the law is concerned, whether or not a parent chooses to put their own child at risk by denying them vaccinations remains, largely, their personal choice. But this …

October 05, 2015

Lindsay Beyerstein

Brains, the means by which we scrutinize our world, are themselves inscrutable, and no more so than when things are going wrong. Just ask our guest this week, award winning medical journalist Jon Palfreman. After spending years of his life studying Parkinson’s in order to write the classic book, The Case of the Frozen Addicts, …

September 29, 2015

Josh Zepps

When the public school board in Cobb County, Georgia, placed a disclaimer describing evolution as “just a theory” (in the non-scientific sense) and not a fact, citizen and author Jeffrey Selman knew he had to take a stand for the integrity of his son’s education. This week on Point of Inquiry Josh Zepps talks to …