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Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Pancreatic cancer cells, grown in culture (Anne Weston, LRI, CRUK. Wellcome Images/flickr)

On today’s show: We’ll get a comprehensive history of the war on cancer and look at how far today’s treatments have come toward cures. Dame Daphne Sheldrick tells about her efforts to conserve wildlife in Africa, which include raising orphaned elephants. The BBC’s A History of the World in 100 Objects is about an Akran drum, one of the oldest surviving African American artifacts. And legal historian and human rights lawyer Sadakat Kadri debunks some of the widespread misconceptions about Sharia law.

The War on Cancer

Robin Hesketh, professor in the department of Biochemistry at the University of Cambridge, gives a history the science of cancer and the medical advances made over the decades. In Betrayed by Nature: The War on Cancer, he leads a tour of human biology to show what happens to the body when the disease develops and how it’s treated.

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Dame Daphne Sheldrick on Love, Life, and Elephants

Dame Daphne Sheldrick is the first person ever to have successfully hand-reared newborn elephants. In her memoir Love, Life and Elephants: And African Love Story, she tells about her pioneering work saving countless elephants, rhinos, and other baby animals, and about her love and partnership with David Sheldrick, the famous Tsavo Park warden.

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A Journey Through Shari'a Law

Some 1400 years after the Prophet Muhammad first articulated God’s law—the shari‘a—its earthly interpreters are still arguing about what it means. Legal historian and human rights lawyer Sadakat Kadri clarifies what Islamic law is and is not. In Heaven on Earth: A Journey Through Shari'a Law from the Deserts of Ancient Arabia to the Streets of the Modern Muslim World, he describes his search for the facts behind the myths.

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Guest Picks: Dr. Dame Daphne Sheldrick

Dame Daphne Sheldrick was on the Lopate Show recently to talk about her efforts to raise and protect orphaned elephants in Kenya, as well as zebras, rhinos, and ostriches. She also told us about her love of home-baked fruit cake. Find out what else Dame Sheldrick's a fan of!

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Tributes: Maurice Sendak

Maurice Sendak was best known for his books that he wrote for children, including Where the Wild Things Are, In the Night Kitchen, and The Sign on Rosie’s Door, which created worlds where the regular rules did not apply, bad things could happen, and the characters were often bossy and sometimes unpleasant. While his genre-bending books were sometimes criticized by adults, they have been loved by generations of children. He died this week at the age of 83, and you can listen to his 1992 interview with Leonard Lopate.

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