No Cure for Curiosity

Shanny Luft

A podcast for curious people!  Shanny Luft, administrator and professor of religion at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point, talks with experts about a broad range of topics from the sciences, pop culture, media, politics, and the arts.

"The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity." - Dorothy Parker

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Episodes

2023 in Media News + Our Favorite Content!
Jan 28 2024
2023 in Media News + Our Favorite Content!
If you are in a show hole, this episode is for you!  Shanny talks with several guests who share their favorite movies, tv shows, and books from 2023.   He also continues his conversation with media studies professors Kelly Wilz and Cary Elza about the biggest media news from last year.Movie and TV Suggestions:"Past Lives," a romantic drama film written and directed by Celine Son"Anatomy of a Fall," a French legal drama thriller directed by Justine Triet"Godzilla Minus 1" directed, written, and with visual effects by  Takashi YamazakiSpiderman: Across the UniverseFargo (tv series) available on HuluThe Bear (tv series) available on Hulu"Fall of the House of Usher" created by Mike Flanagan and available on NetflixThe disturbing and unpredictable movies of Emerald Fennel: "Saltburn" and  "Promising Young Women""The Banshees of Inisherin," a 2022 black tragicomedy film directed and written by Martin McDonaghNovel suggestions:Firekeeper's Daughter by Angeline BoulleyHappiness Falls by Angie KimThe audiobook version of Tom Lake by Ann PatchettThe Heaven & Earth Grocery Store by James McBrideDemon Copperhead by Barbara KingsolverThis episode of No Cure for Curiosity was supported by Magic Mind.  Magic Mind really helped with my productivity during this cold, dark January weather.  You can receive 20% off your next order of Magic Mind by using the promo code "curiosity20".   And you can also get 1 month of Magic Mind for free when you subscribe for 3 months at www.magicmind.com/JANcuriosity.Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.You can send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.
The Exorcist 50th Anniversary!
Oct 31 2023
The Exorcist 50th Anniversary!
The power of curiosity compels you!  On this episode, we talked about William Friedkin's The Exorcist with Cary Elza, (Associate Professor of Media Studies from the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point) and Kathryn Lofton (the Lex Hickson professor of American studies and religious studies, professor of history and divinity at Yale University.)Whether you are an Exorcist fanatic, or hate horror movies, this episode will have something for you.  We talk about why The Exorcist caused a frenzy in 1973.  How the movie portrays religious faith.  And This the 50th anniversary of The Exorcist, which enraptured audiences in 1973, making it the third highest grossing film of that decade.  The Exorcist drove public fascination with the devil and exorcisms inside of churches,  across popular culture, and deep in the public imagination.  For those of you who like extra credit, here is some further reading:Pauline Kael's review from The New Yorker (Jan 1973) Collen McDannell's edited volume, Catholics in the MoviesPlease rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.You can send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.
God the Bestseller: with Stephen Prothero
Sep 22 2023
God the Bestseller: with Stephen Prothero
On this episode of No Cure for Curiosity, I spoke with Stephen Prothero, author, religion scholar, and now retired professor from Boston University. Throughout his career Stephen Prothero has promoted thoughtful public consideration about religion. He has been published in the New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street, and many other newspapers and magazines. He’s been a guest on network television, NPR, CNN, The Daily Show with John Stewart and The Colbert Report.Prothero published a book this year titled God the Bestseller: How one Editor Transformed American Religion a Book at a Time, a biography of Eugene Exman.If you have ever described yourself as "spiritual but not religious," or a "religious seeker," or if you've ever had a religious experience that you can't completely explain, I think you will enjoy my conversation with Stephen Prothero.Books, articles, and interviews with Stephen Prothero can be found at www.stephenprothero.comMy favorite guest appearance Stephen had with Colbert is available here: https://media.mtvnservices.com/embed/mgid:arc:video:comedycentral.com:3be33026-ed01-11e0-aca6-0026b9414f30Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.You can send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.
Our Favorite Things
Aug 26 2023
Our Favorite Things
On this episode of No Cure for Curiosity, I asked five people to share their favorite media of the last year!  If you are in a show hole or looking for a new novel for your book club, this episode is for you!Lauren Gantz, Associate Professor English at UWSPEverything, Everywhere All at Once (Movie)Reservation Dogs (Streaming on Hulu)What We Do In the Shadows (Streaming on Hulu)Our Flag Means Death (Streaming on HBO Max)Monstress written by Marjorie Liu, drawn by Sana Takeda (Graphic Novel)Gretel Stock, Dean of University College, at UWSPThe Crown (Streaming on Netflix)Alice Isn't Dead (Podcast)Maintenance Phase (Podcast) Paula Weitzenberg,  World Class Voracious ReaderA Man Called Ove written by Fredrik Backman/A Man Called Otto (Movie)Beartown by Fredrik BackmanHorse by Geraldine BrooksThe Violin Conspiracy by Brendan SlocumbTrue Biz by Sara NovicRemarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van PeltChris Williams, Associate Professor of English at UWSPNope ( Movie)The Menu (Movie)Marvel Snap (Phone Game App)Final Girl (Boardgame)Kathryn Lounsbery, musician, educator, comedian, and musical executive for CocomelonSisters In Law (Podcast)The Puzzler: One Man's Quest to Solve the Most Baffling Puzzles Ever, from Crosswords to Jigsaws to the Meaning of Life written by A.J. Jacobs (Author of The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible)The Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (Streaming on Netflix)The White Lotus (Streaming on HBO)Bad Sisters (Streaming on Apple TV)Severance (Streaming on Apple TV)Abbot Elementary (Sitcom on ABC)Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.You can send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.
When Robots Rule the World
Oct 4 2022
When Robots Rule the World
Shanny Luft speaks with Vera Klekovkina (Department of World Languages), Joshua Horn (Department of Philosophy), and Tomi Heimonen (Department of Computer Science) about their thoughts and concerns about robots.This episode was inspired by UW-Stevens Point College of Letters and Science Community Engagement series, "When Robots Rule the World."  From the futuristic portrayal of robots in film to robots in the operating room, from the daily use of artificial intelligence (AI) in mundane tasks to the latest advances in the field of human-centered AI, a wide range of university faculty will  explore the implications of When Robots Rule the World, in lectures and public events in Stevens Point.More information about the Community Engagement Series is available here.Here are some links to books and articles referenced in this episode:Kathleen Richardson, Sex Robots: The End of Love (2022)David Levy, Love and Sex with Robots: The Evolution of Human-Robot Relationships (2009)Jean Baudrillard, Simulation and Simulacra (1994)European Parliament Report with Recommendations to the Commission on Civil Law Rules on Robotics (2017) ---------------Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app.  Five-star reviews help other people find No Cure for Curiosity!Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.You can send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.
The Matrix Resurrections
Mar 1 2022
The Matrix Resurrections
In December 2021, writer and director Lana Wachowski delivered the fourth movie in the Matrix universe, The Matrix Resurrections, after a 20-year wait.  Shanny invited Kelly Wilz, Professor of Communications, and Cary Elza, Associate Professor of Media Studies, to chat about the the new film and the entire Matrix saga.  What made the original film so impactful?  Why did Lana Wachowski return to the world she co-created with her sister?  Which narrative themes have changed, and which have stayed the same, since the original Matrix film?  And why do we love Keanu Reeves?  That's what this conversation is all about.Extra credit readings for this episode:Emily VanDerWerff, "The Matrix 4," https://www.vox.com/culture/22847558/the-matrix-resurrections-4-spoilers-review-neo-therapy-mental-health-traumaConnie Hanzhang Jin, "Why Trans Fans Connect to 'The Matrix'" https://www.kqed.org/arts/13907504/trans-fans-the-matrix-lilly-lana-wachowskiJohn Wilmes, "The Twisted, Stolen Legacy of the 'Matrix' Red Pill," https://www.theringer.com/movies/2021/12/21/22847157/the-matrix-red-pill-legacyWhat did you think of The Matrix Resurrections?  Share your thoughts  on our Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.  Or send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/NoCureforCuriosityPodcast.Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.You can send comments to nocureforcuriosity@outlook.com.