anthropology

El-Toro / Flickr - CC

For migrants attempting to illegally cross the deserts guarding our border with Mexico, survival is far from a given. Today, we revisit a conversation with anthropologist Lori Baker about how forensic science is helping identify the unfortunate travelers who perish and return their remains to loved ones. Then, guest host Sam Zeff explores how mass shootings affect the likelihood that new gun laws will be passed with Harvard Business School professor Deepak Malhotra.

The Kauffman Foundation has released a list identifying 222 people who they consider the real leaders of Kansas City. And, for the most part, these leaders aren't the mayor or the chief of police ... So who are they?

Plus, recent hurricanes and earthquakes in Puerto Rico and Mexico have many wondering what to do, perhaps especially those who hail from those regions. What it's like to wait for information, and attempt to help from afar.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Just hours ahead of the total eclipse of the sun, Central Standard broadcasts live from Parkville, Missouri. We hear from KCUR reporters along the path of totality, as well as scientists and historians who traveled across the country to see this rare celestial event.

Guests:

With the aid of a new restorative justice program, Judi Bergquist met the man who killed her son. We hear her story, and meet the woman who brought this program to the Kansas Department of Corrections. 

Plus, how one Wichita State anthropologist stumbled upon the long-lost city of Etzanoa, an infamous Native American settlement that has remained a mystery for 400 years.

Guests:

Baylor University

Not every undocumented migrant crossing our southern border makes it. Remains of those who die in the attempt are found in the open and in unmarked graves. Meet the anthropologist using forensics to return skeletal remains to waiting families. Then KU's Lisa McLendon says "it's all about attitude" when it comes to grammar. Her passion for sentence structure and punctuation led her to write a workbook about it.

Courtesy of Sherie Randolph / sheriemrandolph.com

In the early 1900s, in a home near 18th and Vine, a young black mother made her daughter promise never to have children. That little girl became a radical feminist, who pried her way into Columbia Law School in a time when they weren't even admitting black men. Historian Sherie Randolph unearths the life and times of the late Flo Kennedy. 

Plus, an encore broadcast: One local academic on performing around the world as Zora Neale Hurston. 

Guests:

Luka Mjeda

After a new curator took over the The Krapina Neanderthal Museum in Croatia, David Frayer, a professor emeritus at the University of Kansas, was contacted to examine a previously overlooked collection of eight eagle talons that led him to a sudden epiphany.

How a KU professor discovered that Neanderthals adorned their bodies with eagle talon jewelry.

Guest:

David Frayer, Professor, Department of Anthropology at KU

When researchers stumbled upon a buttery substance under a lake, they thought maybe they'd also stumbled upon the answer to an age old mystery: why a pre-Columbian civilization near St. Louis abandoned the complex city they'd built. But with multiple research teams exploring the Cahokia Mounds site, not everyone agrees on what the new discovery means. 

Guests:

  • Sissel Schroeder, University of Wisconsin
  • Melissa Balthus Zych, University of Toledo

Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Syria, Liberia and Ukraine are places most Kansas Citians know through news reports. But for immigrants from these countries, headlines aren't the half of it; friends, relatives and even memories remain in places left behind. Sound and stories take us around Kansas City, and around the world, as experts on the transnational experience add perspective. 

Jean / Flickr, Creative Commons

A recent article in the New York Times compiled a growing body of evidence suggesting that the more frequent our interactions with strangers, the happier we tend to be. The findings apply to introverts and extroverts alike. In response to the enthusiasm around that article, Central Standard asked whether the people of Kansas City encounter strangers often enough in their day-to-day lives. Does Kansas City's built environment facilitate or prohibit these kinds of interactions?

Often described in the media as “a female Indiana Jones,” Mireya Mayor is not your typical scientist.

Both as an anthropologist working in the jungles of Madagascar, and as a wildlife correspondent for National Geographic, the city girl and former Miami Dolphins cheerleader has found herself sleeping in a rain forest hammock amid poisonous snakes, being charged by gorillas, scaling rocky cliffs, and diving with great white sharks.