Endlessly Irrational

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Friday, June 11, 2010

Mongolian peacekeepers protect the Special Court Mongolian peacekeepers protect the Special Court of Sierra Leone (

Dan Ariely discusses why being irrational might be in your best interest at times. Then, Megan Prelinger takes us back in time to the golden age of science fiction. And filmmaker Rebecca Richman Cohen talks about covering Issa Sesay’s trial in Sierra Leone for her documentary, War Don Don. Plus, Please Explain is all about food-borne illness! 

Irrational Behavior

Dan Ariely uses behavioral economics to explain how human irrationality affects life, business, and public policy. In The Upside of Irrationality, he describes such idiosyncrasies as the IKEA effect and the Baby Jessica effect, and talks about what behavioral patterns can improve how we love, live, work, innovate, manage, and govern. 

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Another Science Fiction

Megan Prelinger discusses aerospace industry ads from the golden age of science fiction—the 1950s and early 1960s—when the farthest reaches of imagination were fed by the technological breakthroughs of the postwar years. Her book Another Science Fiction presents nearly 200 entertaining, intriguing, and inspiring pieces of space-age eye candy.

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War Don Don

Filmmaker Rebecca Richman Cohen talks about her documentary War Don Don. It tells the story of the sensational trial of Issa Sesay, accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sierra Leone. 


Please Explain: Food-Borne Illness and Food Safety

Summer brings barbeques, potato salads, and lots of leafy green salads—and the potential for food-borne illness. On this Please Explain, we’ll find out where these bugs come from and how can we avoid getting sick from the foods we eat.

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