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Origins | PBS

Origins | PBS

Origin of Everything is a show about the undertold histories and cultural dialogues that make up our collective story. From the food we eat, to the trivia and fun facts we can’t seem to get out of our heads, to the social issues we can’t stop debating, everything around us has a history. Origin of Everything is here to explore it all. We like to think that no topic is too small or too challenging to get started.

Episodes are posted here, at wknofm.org, on Mondays.

Click here to watch the latest Origins episode >
  • Everybody, rock your body and get ready to scream! Today Origin is looking at all things boy band! Danielle traces the history of boy ensembles from early Beatlemania to today, examines the markers of a classic boy band, and explains the science behind this particular type of fandom. Oh my my my!
  • People across the globe love beer. A LOT. Danielle traces the history of beer and how we got from fermented corn to the craft beers so many enjoy today.
  • The day is finally here! Your baby has arrived and you're officially a new parent! But how long until that new baby smell wears off and you're forced to return to work and find reliable childcare?
  • Are museum collections ethical? How did these institutions end up with their vast array of artifacts and remains from every corner of the globe? Well, chances are there was some definite shadiness involved. Today, Danielle examines this complicated debate and looks closely at the cases of Saartjie Baartman and Chang and Eng Bunker. What do you think? Should objects be repatriated, left on display, or something in between?
  • From loincloths to long johns and codpieces to jock straps, Danielle takes a "brief" look at the history of male undergarments!
  • Origin of Everything takes a field trip to Washington, D.C. and explores the painful history and legacy of America's Civil War. Danielle looks at Confederate and Union Civil War monuments and what spurred their construction after the war.
  • We all have news cycle fatigue. If it’s not struggling to find reliable sources online, then it’s figuring out how to sift through the myriad of competing (and sometimes conflicting) headlines that roll across our TV screens, cell phones and social media accounts. But when did the news become integral to our lives? Today Danielle explores the history of news and how we ended up in today's never ending news cycle.
  • Why did Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin plant a flag on the moon? Moreover, why do astronauts and space agencies from across the world continually send their nations' flags to space? Today, Danielle traces the history and symbolism of flags around the world and examines their use in colonial expansion - both on Earth and in the stars.
  • Why are prescription drugs so expensive in the United States? Why does the same medication cost significantly less in other countries around the world? Today Danielle examines the history of pharmaceutical regulation in America and how it lead to such disproportionately high costs.
  • Prom has become the defining moment of many American students' high school experiences. But why has a single night of partying come to represent a crucial coming of age moment? Today, Danielle examines the history of prom and how Hollywood uses prom movies to critique or reinforce mainstream American Culture.