Early in the 1900s, Quaker Puffed Rice and Quaker Puffed Wheat were “The Cereal Shot From Guns.” Really. Here’s a commercial as proof. The slogan had to do with how the puffed grain cereals were made, and yet, for some unfathomable reason, it also eventually stopped doing the job of selling them. Quaker needed another plan, and turned to the novel idea of giving away tiny plots of land in exchange for box tops. I don’t have a commercial for that one, but I do have today’s episode.
Humans have spent the last 10,000 years mastering agriculture. But a freak summer storm or bad drought can still mar many a well-planted harvest. Not anymore, says Japanese plant physiologist Shigeharu Shimamura, who has moved industrial-scale farming under the roof.
If you follow us on Facebook and Twitter, you may have seen me put out a request recently for some happier history fare. I’d spent the weeks leading up to that request researching the Doctors’ Riot, the Battle of Blair Mountain and the subject of today’s episode – the Tulsa race riot of 1921, also known as the destruction of Black Wall Street. Holly and I have to pause our recording because we’ve become emotional often enough that it’s become kind of a running joke between us. This is the first time I’ve had to pause my research for that reason. I’d never heard of the event before listeners requested it, in part because it was deliberately swept under the rug for nearly half a century after it took place.
The population in and around Tulsa, Oklahoma, boomed prior to 1921, thanks to the discovery of oil in the area. The Tulsa suburb of Greenwood grew into a thriving African-American community thanks to a combination of segregation and black entrepreneurship. On May 31 and June 1, a mob of white Tulsa citizens, including sworn law enforcement and members of the National Guard, burned it down after being thwarted in their attempt to lynch a young black man for a crime he did not commit. Thousands lost their homes, and hundreds died.
There’s something intoxicating about the notion of a lost continent. Imagine an entire landscape – perhaps even an entire civilization untouched by Western colonialism or perhaps lost beneath ancient, cataclysmic waves. But lost continents are far from mere whimsy and fictional fancy. Amid the dreams and occult whispers, reason and science emerge to dazzle the imagination.
In 1921, roughly 10,000 coal miners fed up with unfair labor practices and exploitation took up arms against their employers. The resulting conflict lasted five days and has been called the biggest armed uprising on U.S. soil since the Civil War. It came to be known as the Battle of Blair Mountain.
In the 1600s, France had a problem. Both it and England were trying to build colonies in the Americas, and from population standpoint, England was way ahead, with its number of colonists in the low six figures. France, on the other hand, had only about 3,000 settlers in New France, thanks to a rather utilitarian view of women and children as inessential to a fur trapper’s bottom line. Louis XIV’s solution to this problem: shipping eligible ladies across the Atlantic to find husbands and start having babies.
We’re not blind to the many other issues that came about as a consequence of European colonization of the Americas (you’ll hear me mesh “colonization” and “colonialism” into one novel non-word) but today’s story is really about who these women were, how they got to New France and what happened to them after they arrived.
What is consciousness? Can we test for it? And how to we rectify the seemingly disparate realities of physical brain and immaterial mind? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie consider the hard problem of human consciousness and the philosophic warnings of the New Mysterians.
Sawbones is a show about medical history. It’s for fun. Sometimes it’s also for giving me ideas for podcast subjects, which is what happened with today’s episode. After listening to the Sawbones episode Corpse Theft and the Resurrection Men while on a plane, I decided we needed an entire episode just on the Doctors’ Riot of 1788. That’s when a giant mob of people got so angry that buried bodies were being dug up for dissection that they stormed two different sites of medical study in New York. This was just one of at least 17 so-called anatomy riots in the U.S. between 1765 and 1854.
Here’s a link to our notes and research. We also hook you up with two places to learn whether England and France were at war in a given year. Since these are also for fun, please no pedantry about whether “England” or “France” is really the right name.
We all hear a lot of buzz about the incredible future of 3D printing, but what about the incredible present? (Er, and the not-so-incredible present?) Special guest Joe McCormick — head writer of Fw:Thinking and pretty rad dude — joins us to talk about the state of 3D printing today. Tune in to learn what’s going on in the industry, what the 3D learning curve is like, and how you can get started.
Gene therapy, DNA analysis and genetically modified organisms are increasingly part of our everyday reality. But where is this road taking us and how will it change us on the way? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind.
Hey Shychemist. I've been following your blog for awhile and I want to bring up something that seems dated but nonetheless holds to be accurate today. I feel like the girls who consider themselves to be on the science side of tumblr to be horribly mistaken. It's statistically proven that women applicants struggle to get into stem doctorate programs, and rightfully so, they don't belong there. examples- atomic-o-licious, brainsx , adventuresinchemistry, i can't fit anymore but you get it
It doesn’t seem dated, your attitude is dated. This is the 21st century.
Women deserve to be in STEM programs just as much as men. I’d wager they deserve to succeed in the Sciences even more than men because of the sexism and misogyny they experience.
They struggle to get in because they’re the minority, and a lot of people who could admit them are sexist (regardless of gender) because of the society they grew up in. Its not through any intellectual weakness. These women are amazing and just as smart as the men in their fields.
You have no right to say these things to these amazing women, many of whom I consider to be friends.