Literature

Frankenstein: 200 Years of Scientific Dread

Mary Shelly’s “Frankenstein” has terrified the world for nearly two centuries, thanks to countless adaptations and the timeless nature of the 1816 text. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss the modern world that this science-fiction horror classic emerged from and the dark shadow it continues to cast over scientific endeavor.

O Time Thy Pyramids: The Library of Babel

In Jorge Luis Borges' masterful short story "The Library of Babel," librarians and cultists wander a vast honeycomb library of hexagonal rooms -- rooms that contain not only all books but all possible books, from unwritten masterpieces to tomes of typographical nonsense. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe venture into this metaphoric labyrinth for contemplations of genetics, cosmology, philosophy, computer programing and magic.

Incomplete/Unfinished

How are we to process an incomplete or unfinished work? Art, literature and film all present us with partial works, yet our reaction varies. Some works remain incomplete due to tragedy or neglect, while others are intentionally non finito. We demand some incomplete compositions completed, while others remain sacrosanct testaments to the creator. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the nature of incomplete works.

Detective Story

Everyone loves a good whodunit, but why does the figure of the fictional detective tower so staggeringly over the modern world? He or she is a seeker of truth, a resolver of conflict, a subcultural liaison and perhaps even a shaman for an increasingly secular world. Join Robert and Christian for dive through the history, science and cultural resonance of the detective story.