News & Information

Map of Wonders, Slime, Hope Diamond, Leeches

Constant Wonder
  • Sep 6, 2019 8:00 pm
  • 1:41:12
Map of Wonders Guest: Caspar Henderson, author, "A New Map of Wonders: A Journey in Search of Modern Marvels" In an age of technology and distraction, how do we maintain our sense of wonder? Why is it important that things still surprise and amaze us? Caspar Henderson sets out to restore our sense of awe.  Algae Is More than Scum Guest: Ruth Kassinger, author, “Slime: How Algae Created Us, Plague Us, and Just Might Save Us” When you think algae you think of the scum in your fish tank. But this lowly life form is more essential than we give it credit for.  The Curse of the Hope Diamond Guest: Richard Kurin, Distinguished Scholar and Ambassador-at-Large, Smithsonian Institution, and author, "Hope Diamond: The Legendary History of a Cursed Gem" Drawing millions of visitors every year, the Hope Diamond is the crowning jewel of the Smithsonian Institute. It’s famous for its deep blue color and impressive size, but the diamond is also known for something more sinister—a deadly curse befalling those who cross its path. Richard Kurin of the Smithsonian Institute weighs in on the legendary history of this infamous treasure.  New Species of Leech Discovered in Washington  Guest: Sebastian Kvist, Assistant Professor, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, and Associate Curator of Invertebrates, Royal Ontario Museum A new species of bloodsuckers was recently discovered in Washington, D.C., and no, it’s not Congress. These leeches are part of an exhibit at the Smithsonian that examine medicinal and ecological roles of these invertebrates.