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Seurat Les Poseuses

   2020    Art
Hanging in the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia, Seurat’s Les Poseuses is probably his least-known painting. It is also a picture brimming with codes and hidden meanings. It shows three nudes in the artist’s studio, but included in the background is Seurat’s famous masterpiece, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. Why is it there? What is it trying to say? Why two pictures at once? Waldemar Januszczak investigates.
Series: The Art Mysteries

Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

   2020    Nature
When Homo sapiens, which means 'wise ones,' discovered and controlled fire hundreds of thousands of years ago, everything changed. Fire allowed us to cook food and heat dwellings, and it served as a focal point for storytelling and sharing cultural identity among community members. We don't yet have established parameters for what it means to be 'distinctly human,' It would seem the only thing that separates us from other animals, Neil deGrasse Tyson ponders, is our neurotic need to feel 'special'. Against the backdrop of the Halls of Extinction, Tyson insists that there must be a clear distinction between ourselves and animals that justifies our eating them, wearing them and even bringing an end to their species.
From the birth of the devil in ancient Persia to a searing story of saintliness among macaque monkeys, this episode is an exploration of human potential for change. It concludes with the story of how one of history's greatest monsters was transformed into one of its shining lights.
Series: Cosmos: Possible Worlds

Coming of Age In The Anthropocene

   2020    Nature
At 11 o'clock on New Year's Eve of the Cosmic Calendar, Homo erectus stood up for the first time, freeing its hands and earning the species its name. They began to move around, to explore, daring to risk everything to get to unknown places. Our Neanderthal relatives lived much as we did and did many of the things we consider to be 'human.' More restless than their cousins the Neanderthals and Denisovans, our Homo sapiens ancestors crossed seas and unforgiving landscapes, changing the land, ocean and atmosphere, leading to mass extinction. The scientific community gave our age a new name, 'Anthropocene.'
Since the first civilizations we've wondered if there's something about human nature that contains the seeds of our destruction. Syukuro Manabe was born in rural Japan and took an intense interest in Earth's average global temperature. In the 1960's, he would assemble the evidence he needed to predict the increase of Earth's temperature due to greenhouse gases until it becomes an uninhabitable and toxic environment, leading to our extinction. 'This doesn't have to be,' says Neil deGrasse Tyson, 'it's not too late. There's another hallway, another future we can still have; we'll find a way.'
Series: Cosmos: Possible Worlds

Mysteries of Sleep

   2020    Medicine
Why do we sleep? And what does sleep have to do with memory, trauma, and our emotions? From fruit flies to whales, virtually every animal sleeps. But why? Why do we need to spend nearly a third of our lives in such a defenseless state? Scientists are peering more deeply into the sleeping brain than ever before, discovering just how powerful sleep can be, playing a role in everything from memory retention and emotional regulation to removing waste from our brains. So why are we getting so little of it?

Gauguin Vision After The Sermon

   2020    Art
The Vision After the Sermon, also known as Jacob Wrestling with the Angel, is a painting full of symbolism and mystery. But what does Gauguin’s famous work have to do with a 17-year-old girl called Madeleine, with Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, and with sumo wrestlers?
Waldemar Januszczak reveals all as he investigates Gauguin’s epic religious painting about good and evil, temptation and desire.
Series: The Art Mysteries
Senna
Senna

   2010    Culture
Triumph of Life
Triumph of Life

   2006    Nature
Conquistadors
Conquistadors

   2002    History
Oceans
Oceans

   2009    Nature
The Mind Explained
The Mind Explained

   2019    Medicine
Fleetwood Mac Live in Boston
Fleetwood Mac Live in Boston

   2004    Art
Leaving Neverland
Leaving Neverland

   2019    Culture