On BBC 2's "The Culture Show" Tonight

By Chris Mooney | July 1, 2010 4:07 pm

catching-fireTonight at 23:20 BST, on BBC 2’s “The Culture Show,” you can find me guest hosting a segment–the first time I’ve done major TV as a host, rather than guest. The occasion is the BBC’s annual Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction, and I did the segment interviewing Harvard University’s Richard Wrangham, author of the fascinating book Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Humanwhich is quite a page-turner, actually, and one of six nominees for the prize (worth 20,000 pounds).

Alas, if you’re in the U.S., I don’t believe you can see The Culture Show, for complicated reasons that haven’t quite been explained to me. For those in the UK, though, check it out!

And meanwhile, for arguably one of the biggest ideas in evolution in quite some time, give Wrangham’s book a try….

P.S.: Video from the segment, and credits, are now here. Alas, it doesn’t play unless you’re in the UK….

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Announcements, Books, Evolution, Food

Comments (2)

  1. Jon

    I’ve been wanting to read this. I heard an interview with the author that sounded really interesting. His speculation on the social implications of cooking seemed especially interesting (it had something to do with the relations between the sexes, if I remember it right?)…

  2. Jon

    Alas, it doesn’t play unless you’re in the UK….


    Well here’s a Bloggingheads of Wrangham explaining his theory of cooking and the relations between the sexes:


    One thought I had after hearing his theory, is that if you consider the taboo against taking meat from a woman as she’s cooking as a big step toward civilization, more sophisticated social accord, etc. then this might provide some context behind the animal sacrifices, say, in the Old Testament. I mean, just burning a piece of meat and “sacrificing” it for no reason is an absurd act. But when you consider it as a gesture kind of one step beyond the respect and patience accorded while cooking then it seems less absurd. (Anyway, just my speculation. Probably not worth much.)


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About Chris Mooney

Chris is a science and political journalist and commentator and the author of three books, including the New York Times bestselling The Republican War on Science--dubbed "a landmark in contemporary political reporting" by Salon.com and a "well-researched, closely argued and amply referenced indictment of the right wing's assault on science and scientists" by Scientific American--Storm World, and Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future, co-authored by Sheril Kirshenbaum. They also write "The Intersection" blog together for Discover blogs. For a longer bio and contact information, see here.


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