PRI: To the Best of Our Knowledge

PRI: To the Best of Our Knowledge

United States

To the Best of Our Knowledge cracks open the world and the ideas that fuel it through interviews with the world's luminaries, from experts to cultural icons. Each show revolves around a theme where we explore these ideas and the people who consider them.

Episodes

Peak Performance  

Scaling El Cap, where Alex Honnold and Tommy Caldwell stunned the world with their dazzling climbs. The Audacity of the World's Most Daring Climber; Hanging Out On Top of Cliffs Is My Happy Place ; Alex Honnold’s Most Dangerous Adventure; The Science of Peak Performance; The Myth of the “Dumb Jock”; The Ultimate Long-Distance Race.

Gateway Moments: Live from St. Louis  

We’ve all had them—the big, significant, transformations that take your life in a new direction. And even though those gateway moments present new and exciting opportunities, they are almost always by definition uncomfortable.    This hour, in partnership with St. Louis Public Radio, To The Best Of Our Knowledge explores various examples of crossing over, to racial understanding, to recovery and to greater unity and love. A City of Gates That Do Not Swing Wide; Adventures on the Woke Spectrum; Shadowball; The Last Game I Make Before I Die; Beatboxing With My Dad; Black At Home, White At Work.

Extra: One Woman Who Sounds Like Twenty  

Low-fi artist Syna So Pro loops with love.

This Will Shock You  

The virtues of transgressive, subversive, rule-breaking art, both as an aesthetic and as a way of life. A Matter of (Bad) Taste; Two Tape Recorders and Twenty Knives; Classical Doesn't Have To Mean Dead; Hiding Yourself Behind Characters.

Extra: Changing A Place By Documenting It  

Filmmaker Laura Stewart on how being filmed affects documentary subjects, and how that affects the truth you can tell.

Parks and Recreation  

"We live by wild mercy," Terry Tempest Williams writes. In this hour, she takes us to some of her favorite national parks, from Big Bend to Arches. We also explore the desert wilderness of Utah's Escalante area, and hear about a father and daughter's remarkable adventure into the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Lauret Savoy says the American landscape also has a complicated history that can't be separated from the country's racism. And Robert Moor talks about the wisdom of trails. A Father and Daughter Venture Into the Alaskan Wild; Terry Tempest Williams on National Parks; Desert Mind; Land, Race, Memory; The Wisdom of Trails.

Forgiving the Unforgiveable  

Are there certain acts, certain people who are beyond forgiveness? When you’re hurt and the only way out of toxic bitterness and resentment is to let go, how do you summon the resolve to reach out to the person who hurt you most? This hour, the keys to living a more forgiving life. Reconciling With My Rapist; How Does It Feel To Forgive?; The Four Key Steps To Forgiveness; Making Peace With My Father, With Help From Dante; Hari Kunzru on American Guilt.

Mark Frost Takes Us Deep Inside the Secret History of Twin Peaks  

Mark Frost takes us deep inside the secret history of Twin Peaks.

Worshipping Waterfalls: The Evolution of Belief  

Do chimpanzees have spiritual experiences? A remarkable discovery in West Africa suggests they might. Do Chimpanzees Have Spiritual Experiences?; How “Big Gods” Transformed Human History; An Evolutionary Biologist Searches for God; What Bliss Looks Like In Your Brain.

Extra: The Evolutionary Advantage of Faith  

Is there an inherent conflict between science and religion? Jeff Schloss doesn’t think so. He’s a biologist who studies the evolutionary origins of religion. He’s also an observant Christian.

Frankly, I Don't Give a Damn  

In this hour, we explore what the superpower of not giving a f--- might allow you to do. Breaking Out of The "Feedback Loop from Hell"; Menefreghismo; Resisting the Self-Improvement Craze; The Impossibility of Actually ‘Having It All’.

The Mississippi  

The Mississippi River is an American icon. It's a body of water that’s been shaped as much by cultural processes as by environmental ones. From the state lines it draws to its role in literature and the arts, it’s a river that flows deep in the American psyche. This episode is about the boundaries and horizons of the Mississippi — its deep geologic past, its history as a route to freedom, and its meaning today.  A Hawk and a Warbler; When The Mississippi Met the Atlantic; Life on Mark Twain's Mississippi; The Music and Meaning of Sounding 'Mark Twain'; Boundary and Horizon: The Mississippi River in African-American History.

The News From Poems: “November Eyes on Main Street”  

Richard Blanco’s poem begins the day after the November election, as he struggles to make sense of a new political mood.

Center of the World, Ohio  

Amidst economic devastation, producer Charles Monroe-Kane asks what it takes to survive in the Rust Belt.

Center of the World, Ohio  

Amidst economic devastation, producer Charles Monroe-Kane asks what it takes to survive in the Rust Belt.

The News From Poems: “WTF”  

A near-accident has poet Laura Kasischke marveling at the fearlessness of young adults and also worrying about their future.

Repeat When Necessary  

Whether it’s nail biting or handwashing, most of us have a compulsion we can’t give up. Maybe that’s a good thing? The Psychology of Why You Can’t Stop Checking Your Phone; Tracing the Patterns of an Obsessive Mind; When Obsessive Thoughts Take Control Of Your Life; How Obsession and Compulsion Powered American Genius.

The News From Poems: “Ode To the Dead of Bowling Green”  

Poet Nick Lantz has been thinking about political spin and how his poems can play off the language of politics. 

The News From Poems: “Ode To the Dead of Bowling Green”  

Poet Nick Lantz has been thinking about political spin and how his poems can play off the language of politics. 

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