Radiolab believes your ears are a portal to another world. Where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience. Big questions are investigated, tinkered with, and encouraged to grow. Bring your curiosity, and we'll feed it with possibility. Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich host.
You can support this program directly with a donation to Radiolab.
Get together with
Radiolab on Facebook
Radiolab on Twitter
Every 17 years, a deafening sex orchestra hits the East Coast — billions and billions of cicadas crawl out of the ground, sing their hearts out, then mate and die. In this short, Jad and Robert talk to a man who gets inside that noise to dissect its meaning and musical components.
When Kelley Benham and her husband Tom French finally got pregnant, after many attempts and a good deal of technological help, everything was perfect. Until it wasn't. Their story raises questions that, until recently, no parent had to face
What if the moon were just a jump away? In this short, a beautiful answer to that question from Italo Calvino, read live by Liev Schreiber.
Improv comedy puts uncertainty on center stage — performers usually start by asking the audience for a prompt, then they make up the details as they go. But two actors in Chicago are taking this idea to its absolute limit, and finding ways to navigate the unknown.
This hour, we walk the tightrope between doubt and certainty, and wonder if there's a way to make yourself at home on that razor's edge between definitely...and not so sure.
This spring, parts of the East Coast will turn squishy and crunchy — the return of the 17-year cicadas means surfaces in certain locations (in patches from VA to CT) will once again be coated in bugs buzzing at 7 kilohertz. In their honor, we're rebroadcasting one of our favorite episodes: Emergence.
In the 1970s, choking became national news: thousands were choking to death, leading to more accidental deaths than guns. Nobody knew what to do. Until a man named Henry Heimlich came along with a big idea.
There are few musical moments more well-worn than the first four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. But in this short, we find out that Beethoven might have made a last-ditch effort to keep his music from ever feeling familiar, to keep pushing his listeners to a kind of psychological limit.