No Cure for Curiosity

No Cure for Curiosity

A podcast for curious people! Shanny Luft, administrator and professor of religion at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point, talks with experts about a broad range of topics from the sciences, pop culture, media, politics, and the arts. "The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity." - Dorothy Parker


March 14, 2024 48 mins

This bodacious episode of No Cure for Curiosity was supported by Magic Mind.  Magic Mind really helped with my productivity during this cold, dank Wisconsin weather.  You can receive 20% off your next order by going to and entering the fly promo code "curiosity20". 

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Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cur...

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If you are in a show hole, this episode is for you!  Shanny talks with several guests who share their favorite movies, tv shows, and books from 2023.   He also continues his conversation with media studies professors Kelly Wilz and Cary Elza about the biggest media news from last year.

Movie and TV Suggestions:

  • "Past Lives," a romantic drama film written and directed by Celine Son
  • "Anatomy of a Fall,"...
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January 20, 2024 31 mins

Shanny Luft is curious about Barbie so he invited professors Cary Elza and Kelly Wilz in Media Studies at the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point, to talk about it.   Why was Barbie the most successful movie of 2023?  We also talked about the films that  inspired Greta Gerwig's directing, the doll's effect on body image, our favorite (and least favorite) scenes.

This episode of No Cure for Curiosity was support...

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October 31, 2023 37 mins

The power of curiosity compels you!  On this episode, we talked about William Friedkin's The Exorcist with Cary Elza, (Associate Professor of Media Studies from the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point) and Kathryn Lofton (the Lex Hickson professor of American studies and religious studies, professor of history and divinity at Yale University.)

Whether you are an Exorcist fanatic, or hate horror movies, this episode ...

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September 22, 2023 35 mins

On this episode of No Cure for Curiosity, I spoke with Stephen Prothero, author, religion scholar, and now retired professor from Boston University. Throughout his career Stephen Prothero has promoted thoughtful public consideration about religion. He has been published in the New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street, and many other newspapers and magazines. He’s been a guest on network television, NPR, CNN, The Daily S...

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August 26, 2023 43 mins

On this episode of No Cure for Curiosity, I asked five people to share their favorite media of the last year!  If you are in a show hole or looking for a new novel for your book club, this episode is for you!

Lauren Gantz, Associate Professor English at UWSP

  • Everything, Everywhere All at Once (Movie)
  • Reservation Dogs (Streaming on Hulu)
  • What We Do In the Shadows (Streaming on Hulu)
  • Our Flag Means Death (Streaming on HBO Ma...
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February 6, 2023 42 mins

In our first episode of 2023,  Shanny talks with Cary Elza and Kevin Obsatz, two media studies professors at UWSP, about the career of James Cameron and his latest movie, Avatar: The Way of Water.   We talked about the themes that have dominated Cameron's career, his particular skill for getting audiences pumped up, and what we thought of the second film in the Avatar Pentalogy!

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December 25, 2022 41 mins

November 2022 would have been the 100-birthday of Charles Schulz.  To wrap up the second year of No Cure for Curiosity, we were curious about Schulz and his strip, Peanuts with Rob Stolzer, Professor of Art, and Neil Prendergast, U.S. Historian, from UWSP.

What made Peanuts such an iconic comic strip in the second half of the 20th century?  What is Peanuts' vision of mid-century America?  And why did NBC think that &q...

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October 30, 2022 38 mins

For Halloween, Shanny Luft speaks with Robert Jadin, an evolutionary biologist, and Chris Diehm, an environmental ethicist, about SNAKES!   How did snakes evolve?  Why do they scare us?  What do snakes taste like?   (Plus, we talk about snake sex if you're curious about that sort of thing.)

Check out this creepy episode of No Cure for Curiosity! (And tell your friends about NCFC!)

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October 4, 2022 26 mins

Shanny Luft speaks with Vera Klekovkina (Department of World Languages), Joshua Horn (Department of Philosophy), and Tomi Heimonen (Department of Computer Science) about their thoughts and concerns about robots.

This episode was inspired by UW-Stevens Point College of Letters and Science Community Engagement series, "When Robots Rule the World."  From the futuristic portrayal of robots in film to robots in the op...

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In 2021, Ken Burns released a 3-part documentary about Ernest Hemingway, which inspired my conversation about Hemingway with English professor Ross Tangedal and PhD candidate Katie Warczak.  Should we still care about Hemingway?  Or should he be canceled?

If you do not learn new things about Hemingway from this conversation, you can have your money back.  That's our podcast guarantee.

Plus, can Ross and Katie...

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March 1, 2022 34 mins

In December 2021, writer and director Lana Wachowski delivered the fourth movie in the Matrix universe, The Matrix Resurrections, after a 20-year wait.  Shanny invited Kelly Wilz, Professor of Communications, and Cary Elza, Associate Professor of Media Studies, to chat about the the new film and the entire Matrix saga.  What made the original film so impactful?  Why did Lana Wachowski return to the world she co-created with her sis...

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February 7, 2022 30 mins

With the Super Bowl a week away, and the Olympics playing out now, Shanny invited Robert Sirabian, professor of English at UWSP, and Art Remillard, professor of Religious Studies at St. Francis University in Pennsylvania, to talk about sports, community, narrative, heroes, transcendence, and politics.

Readings referenced in this podcast:

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Shanny talks with Andy Felt, mathematics professor at UWSP, about ranked-choice voting.  What is it?  How does it work?   Where is it already being used?  And how would it change the culture of extreme partisanship in the United States?

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Our intro music was written by UWSP music student ...

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October 18, 2021 29 mins

Shanny talks about Zombies with Kelly J Baker, a religious studies PhD, editor, and award-winning author of five books, including The Zombies are Coming, and Cary Elza, professor Media Studies at UWSP, who teaches courses on screenwriting, film and media analysis, history and genre.

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October 4, 2021 27 mins

Shanny talks with Cortney Chaffin, an art historian at UWSP, and Ellen Larson, a PhD candidate at the University of Pittsburgh, about Cai Guo-Qiang.  Cai is a Chinese artist renowned for his firework art you have to see to believe.  We watched the documentary Sky Ladder, available on Netflix, which documented Cai's effort to complete an art piece he has worked on for decades.  We talk about what it takes to create firework art...

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September 19, 2021 24 mins

Shanny talks with Kimiko Matsumura, an art historian, and Chad Seales, a scholar of religion and culture, about Lizzo and the video for "Rumors."   Why was the video set in an ancient Greek and Roman visual world?   How does the song and video reflect Lizzo's message of body positivity?  And did Cardi B have her baby yet?!  All this and more is covered on today's episode.

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September 6, 2021 24 mins

In the first episode of the second semester, we are curious about Stephen Colbert and American Catholicism.  So we invited Stephanie Brehm, author of America's Most Famous Catholic (According to Himself): Stephen Colbert and American Religion in the 21st Century.  And joining us is Mary Ellen O'Donnell, author of  Ingrained Habits: Growing up Catholic in Mid-Twentieth Century America.

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May 25, 2021 31 mins

Shanny talks with Political Science John Blakeman about the Supreme Court.  What have been some of the most interesting and important cases from this past term?  How have the three new justices impacted the rulings of the Supreme Court?  Shanny is curious.

How would you rule in these cases?  Continue the conversation on our Facebook page at

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May 10, 2021 26 mins
Support the show

Please rate and review No Cure for Curiosity in your favorite podcast app. And tell your friends who might also enjoy No Cure for Curiosity! It helps other people find the show. And continue the conversation on our Facebook page at

Our intro music was written by UWSP music student Derek Carden and our logo is by artist and graphic designer Ryan Dreimiller.

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