Great Encounters

The full length interviews selected from Radio New Zealand National's feature programmes during the week.

Coming up

6:06 pm Saturday 1 November: Great Encounters

From Saturday Morning: Lloyd Spencer Davis: Professor Penguin

Award-winning writer, photographer and filmmaker Lloyd Spencer Davis is Stuart Professor of Science Communication and director of the Centre for Science Communication at the University of Otago. His latest book is Professor Penguin: Discovery and Adventure with Penguins (Random House New Zealand, ISBN: 978-1-77553-725-0).

From Nine to Noon: Dr Marlene Zuk: Evolutionary biologist on fantasy of Paleo

Evolutionary biologist Marlene Zuk says popular theories about how our ancestors lived and why we should emulate them are often based on speculation, not scientific evidence, and they reflect a basic misunderstanding about how evolution works. She says there was never a time when everything about us – our bodies, our minds, and our behaviour – was perfectly in synch with the environment. Dr Zuk is a Professor of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at the University of Minnesota. She is the author of the book Paleofantasy: What Evolution Really Tells Us About Sex, Diet, and How We Live. Dr Zuk is visiting New Zealand for a series of Allan Wilson Centre lectures.

Displaying audio 1 - 15 of 197 in total

  • Evolutionary biologist Marlene Zuk on fantasy of Paleo ( 18′ 41″ )

    Are our bodies and brains truly at odds with modern life? Many diets and self-help books are predicated on the notion that our behaviour and bodies evolved under a certain set of circumstances, from which we deviate to our peril. Implicit in that idea is the assumption that humans in a modern society aren't evolving any more, that we have somehow freed ourselves from evolution, or at the very least, that evolution always requires so long to act that we can't expect to have adapted to our current circumstances. Dr. Marlene Zuk says popular theories about how our ancestors lived and why we should emulate them are often based on speculation, not scientific evidence, and they reflect a basic misunderstanding about how evolution works. She says there was never a time when everything about us - our bodies, our minds, and our behaviour - was perfectly in synch with the environment. Dr. Zuk is a Professor of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at the University of Minnesota. She is the author of the book Paleofantasy: What Evolution Really Tells Us About Sex, Diet, and How We Live. Dr. Zuk is visiting New Zealand for a series of Allan Wilson Centre lectures.

    From Nine To Noon on 31 Oct 2014

  • Lloyd Spencer Davis: penguins ( 28′ 20″ )

    Stuart Professor of Science Communication and director of the Centre for Science Communication at the University of Otago, and author of Professor Penguin: Discovery and Adventure with Penguins.

    From Saturday Morning on 25 Oct 2014

  • Historian and author Jock Phillips ( 27′ 58″ )

    Jock Phillips is the architect and passion behind Te Ara, the online encyclopedia of New Zealand. The last segment of Te Ara, themed 'Creative and Intellectual Life' , has just been launched featuring poets, writers, musicians and film-makers who have contributed to New Zealand's cultural history. It's 12 years since the beginning of the project, and the completion of the last segment also marks Jock Phillips' retirement. Last night, he received a Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement for non-fiction at a function at Premier House.

    From Nine To Noon on 24 Oct 2014

  • Justin O'Sullivan: cellular organisation ( 35′ 36″ )

    Senior research fellow at the Liggins Institute, whose work at Gravida, an inter-institutional, inter-disciplinary virtual research network involves new discoveries about cellular organisation.

    From Saturday Morning on 18 Oct 2014

  • Former Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard ( 34′ 10″ )

    Julia Gillard tells us about her controversial ascent to the top, sexism and the enmity between her and Kevin Rudd. She became Australia's first woman Prime Minister in June 2010, after a brutal coup in which she unseated Kevin Rudd in his first term of government. Her subsequent three years in power were dogged by controversy, infighting and leadership tensions before she was finally dumped as leader and Kevin Rudd reinstated. Julia Gillard has written a memoir, called "My Story".

    From Nine To Noon on 16 Oct 2014

  • Karen Armstrong: religion and violence ( 41′ 26″ )

    Britain's foremost scholar of world religion, author of Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Violence, and founder of the Charter for Compassion.

    From Saturday Morning on 11 Oct 2014

  • Peter Williams - Life in the Law ( 22′ 1″ )

    Peter Williams QC is a well-known name and face to New Zealanders. One of our greatest barristers, Peter Williams has defended some of New Zealand's most infamous criminal cases, including: Terry Clark (Mr. Asia) and Arthur Allan Thomas. He has been a constant advocate for change in the penal system and has campaigned to rehabilitate prisoners, rather than imprisoning them. He joins Wallace on Sunday Morning to talk about some of his more notorious cases and his life spent working in the law.

    From Sunday Morning on 05 Oct 2014

  • David Ifill: black cab driver ( 30′ 43″ )

    London taxi driver previously interviewed by Kim Hill in his black cab on a Saturday Morning programme in June 2006.

    From Saturday Morning on 04 Oct 2014

  • Peter Mullan: Scotland, politics, anxiety ( 43′ )

    Scottish actor (Top of the Lake, My Name is Joe) and director (The Magdalene Sisters, Neds), who is visiting New Zealand for the Big Screen Symposium.

    From Saturday Morning on 27 Sep 2014

  • Elspeth Sandys - novelist and writer has released a new memoir ( 29′ 27″ )

    Novelist and short story writer, Elspeth Sandys has published eight novels and two collections of short stories, and has written extensively for the BBC and Radio New Zealand. Her novel River Lines was a finalist in the Orange Prize. She's just published a memoir called What Lies Beneath, which tells the story of her out-of-wedlock birth; her adoption, her difficult relationship with her adoptive mother, her exhaustive search for her birth family, and how all of this has impacted on her life.

    From Nine To Noon on 24 Sep 2014

  • Gayle Souter-Brown: healing landscapes ( 37′ 26″ )

    Landscape and urban design consultant, founder of Greenstone Design, and author of Landscape and Urban Design for Health and Well-Being: Using Healing, Sensory and Therapeutic Gardens

    From Saturday Morning on 20 Sep 2014

  • Margaret Lock: dementia and aging ( 41′ 57″ )

    Professor Emerita in Social Studies in Medicine at McGill University in Montreal and author of The Alzheimer Conundrum: Entanglements of Dementia and Aging.

    From Saturday Morning on 13 Sep 2014

  • Alan Cooper: exploring human history ( 47′ 40″ )

    Director of the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA at the University of Adelaide who has been awarded a Laureate Fellowship by the Australian Research Council, using ancient micro biomes and genomes to study human origins, disease and Aboriginal genetics.

    From Saturday Morning on 06 Sep 2014

  • John Lanchester: speaking money ( 48′ 20″ )

    British journalist and author whose new book is How to Speak Money: What the Money People Say - and What They Really Mean.

    From Saturday Morning on 30 Aug 2014

  • Helen Garner: murder and men ( 44′ 25″ )

    Australian author, screenwriter and journalist known for her novels and non-fiction works, the latest of which is This House of Grief: The Story of a Murder Trial.

    From Saturday Morning on 23 Aug 2014