Category Archives: Authors

Ann Patchett

Contributed by John Menier

8232Listed by Time magazine as one of the world’s 100 most influential people in 2012, Ann Patchett is a true woman of letters: novelist, essayist, anthologist, and co-owner of Parnassus Books in Nashville. Patchett is also a frequent and accomplished public speaker, noted for her anecdotes about the literary life, her insights into the creative process, and her wry wit.

One of Patchett’s favorite topics is the ever-changing relationship between readers and books. As an example she cites her own evolution reading (and re-reading) the works of John Updike, Leo Tolstoy, Pearl Buck, Ta-Nehisi Coates, and others, noting that “the books don’t change, but we do.” Put another way, the reader’s evaluation of a particular book is shaped as much by the reader’s life experience and circumstances as by the work’s innate qualities. As such our appreciation (or lack thereof) for a particular title may change over time, but the consistent commonality among the books we treasure is that they never fail to evoke a strong response. Patchett believes the writer’s primary task is to elicit that response by inviting the reader to become an active participant in their story.

Patchett’s approach to the reading public is refreshingly un-elitist. She stresses the importance of what she calls “gateway drugs,” books of dubious literary worth that may encourage readers to explore other authors and genres. She applauds the success of “trashy” pop novels such as “Fifty Shades of Gray” and “Twilight,” no matter their pedigree, for their role in re-vitalizing book sales and energizing the publishing community. What matters most to Patchett as both author and bookstore owner is that the reading habit is fostered and encouraged, and in that endeavor, there’s no place for snobbery.

Click here to watch An Evening with Ann Patchett

Click here for more programs from The Library Channel

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The Hacking of the American Mind

8232We first met Dr. Lusting in 2009 when UCTV presented his “Sugar: The Bitter Truth” lecture. That viral video now has over 7 million YouTube views, and more every day.

His latest program, “The Hacking of the American Mind: The Science Behind the Corporate Takeover of Our Bodies and Brains,” coincides with the publishing of his new book of the same title.

In this half-hour interview, Lustig, a UCSF endocrinologist, explores the reward system in our brains – serotonin, cortisol, and dopamine – chemicals that drive our pleasure-seeking behaviors including overeating, drug use, and that ever-present cell phone. But he goes beyond just neural pathways and brain chemistry to impute the underlying economic machine that creates industries that profit off processed foods full of sugar.

He recommends a “four Cs” solution — connect, contribute, cope, and cook — urging a slowed-down lifestyle for the sake of our health and happiness.

In addition to the interview “The Hacking of the American Mind”, you may enjoy these short videos:

The Difference Between Happiness and Pleasure
Corporate Responsibility vs. Individual Responsibility
Are All Calories the Same?
Responsibility of the Food Industry
Processed Food and Pleasure

For a deeper dive, watch the video that started it all and other programs with Dr. Robert Lustig:
Sugar: The Bitter Truth
The Skinny on Obesity
Fat Chance: Fructose 2.0

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A Life in Medicine

8232Healthcare has never been as important to peoples’ lives as it is today. Staggering advances in technology and science stand alongside major changes — and controversies — in policy and payment. In this new series, Dr. Robert Wachter, chair of UCSF’s Department of Medicine, bestselling author, and rated in 2015 by Modern Healthcare magazine as the most influential physician-executive in the U.S., interviews leading lights in medicine and healthcare.

In addition to finding out what’s happening now and where medicine is going, these individuals talk about the experiences that shaped their careers.

The first two programs are available now with more coming monthly to UCTV.

Dr. Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo
From self-described army brat to a renowned physician and scientist, Dr. Bibbins-Domingo is the immediate past-chair of the US Preventive Services Task Force. Find out how she balances the various demands on her time, including being a mom.

Dr. Lloyd “Holly” Smith
Dr. Smith came to San Francisco in 1964 and transformed UCSF into a world leader. His ability to steer that change is as much about management as medicine.

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The 21st Annual Writer’s Symposium

8232Join host Dean Nelson for the 21st Annual Writer’s Symposium, a witty and informative interview-based experience where the audience gets to eavesdrop on conversations between authors about the art and angst of writing. Three new programs are sure to inspire!

8232Nikki Giovanni
Author, spoken word artist, poet, essayist, professor, Nikki Giovanni has been electrifying audiences for more than 40 years, earning her one of Oprah Winfrey’s Living Legends distinctions. In this fun and insightful interview, Giovanni reads some of her work and talks about her relationships with Toni (Morrison), Miss (Rosa) Parks, Maya (Angelou), and others. Find out why she has a bone to pick with Obama and hear the story behind her tattoo. She also reveals that she loves to inform readers with her poetry, and that she’s a real “space freak”!

8232Dick Enberg
If you’ve listened to sports on the radio or watched it on television anywhere in the world, you have heard Dick Enberg exclaim “Oh My!” His essays on sports are as legendary as his voice. In addition to his autobiography Oh My!, he wrote a play about basketball coach Al McGuire that still travels around the country. Enberg was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2015 for his broadcasting excellence.

8232Robin Jones Gunn
Robin Jones Gunn has a gift for writing about relationships that reflect depth, values, and eternal love that appeal to everyone. Her books (including the Christy Miller series, Sierra Jensen series, Katie Weldon series, Sisterchicks series, Glenbrooke series, fiction, nonfiction, and children’s books) have sold 5 million copies.

Watch these programs and browse others from The Writer’s Symposium by the Sea.

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UCTV’s Most Watched Programs of 2013

It’s been another fantastic year of enlightening content. Here’s a recap of UCTV’s most watched programs of 2013:

24549Brain Fitness: Social Aspects of Dementia and Mild Cognitive Impairment

Mario D. Garrett, PhD discusses the scientific revolution currently happening in dementia studies, dementia errors that impact research, and the importance of social interaction for patients with dementia.

25329 Concussions and Sports

 Clinical neuropsychologist Eric Freitag of Sport Concussion Program explains the risks and medical implications of concussions. Learn how to spot a concussion, when to see a doctor, and how treatment should progress.

24975 Is the Human Mind Unique?

Cognitive abilities often regarded as unique to humans include humor, morality, symbolism, creativity, and preoccupation with the minds of others. In these compelling talks, emphasis is placed on the functional uniqueness of these attributes, as opposed to the anatomical uniqueness.

25788 Brain Mapping:  Pushing the Frontiers of Neurology — Atlantic Meets the Pacific 2013

UC San Diego neuroscientists Ralph Greenspan and Nicholas Spitzer join Kris Famm of GlaxoSmithKline and James Fallows of The Atlantic for a look into the future of brain research. This program is part of The Atlantic Meets the Pacific 2013 series presented by The Atlantic and UCSD.

25193 Big Bang – UC Davis Business Plan Competition 2013

Big Bang! is the annual UC Davis Business Plan Competition, hosted by the UC Davis Child Family Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and organized by MBA students of the Graduate School of Management. Find out the winners of this year’s competition.

25130 Immunology 101: The Basics and Introduction to our Patient

Katherine Gundling, MD, Associate Clinical Professor of Allergy and Immunology at UCSF, and Practice Chief of the Allergy/Immunology clinic at Moffitt Hospital examines the essential purpose of the immune system and how living with a primary disorder of immunity can affect daily life.

24925 The Age of Amazon with Marc Onetto

Marc Onetto, senior vice president of worldwide operations and customer service at Amazon.com, shares Amazon’s secrets to success. Hosted by the UC Davis Graduate School of Management’s Dean’s Distinguished Speaker Series.


25202The Future of Human Space Exploration

Charles Kennel, Former Scripps Institution of Oceanography director and chair of the National Academy’s Space Science Board, reviews what NASA’s space program has accomplished, what it is doing now, and what the future holds for human space exploration.

25319 Bike Fit: It’s All About the Bike

Curtis Cramblett, PT, CFMT, CSCS has been an avid cyclist and racer for more than 20 years and has spent thousands of hours on his bike. He shares his expertise on proper bike fit including what a good bike fit feels like, your biomechanical needs, and adjusting your bike to your body.

24900 Tracy DiNunzio, Co-Founder and CEO of Tradesy

Tracy DiNunzio, Founder and CEO of Tradesy a fashion resale website, talks about what it took to get her company off the ground. She is also the CEO and founder of Recycled Bride, the Web’s largest wedding resale marketplace, which launched in 2009.

24972 An Evening of Sacred Music and Dances from Japan Kagura Ensemble of Chichibu Shrine

Enjoy this unique opportunity to experience Kagura (sacred music and ritual dances) from Chichibu, in the first and only US performance of the shrine’s Kagura troupe. Chichibu Kagura, dating back to approximately the seventeenth century, with a repertory based on ancient myths, has been designated by the government as an Important Formless Folkloric Cultural Property.

24923 Is Beer In Your Career?

What opportunities are in the burgeoning craft brewing industry? In this Career Channel presentation, you’ll learn the answers from a panel of experts that includes Stone Brewing founder Greg Koch, Lost Abbey brewer Tomme Arthur, Ballast Point brewer and co-founder Yuseff Cherney, and the founder of White Labs Inc. Pure Yeast and Fermentation, Chris White.

25125 HIV: A Primer

Dr. Jay Levyan, an AIDS and cancer researcher at UCSF, discusses the discovery of HIV and its basic science. Then, Dr. C. Bradley Hare, Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine and Medical Director, UCSF HIV/AIDS Division at San Francisco General Hospital, explores HIV and its diseases through case presentations from the clinic.

25071 Intellectual Journey with Gary Becker  – Conversations with History

Harry Kreisler welcomes Nobel Laureate Gary S. Becker for a discussion of his intellectual journey. Topics include: Milton Friedman, his early work on discrimination, the skills and temperament required for work in economics, applying economic analysis to social problems, the Chicago school of economics, creativity, rational choice theory, markets vs. government, the impact of ideas on policy, the communications revolution, and the lessons of the 2008 economic collapse.

24920 Farming in the 21st Century: A Woman’s Perspective from South Africa

Brylyne Chitsunge is an internationally acclaimed expert and facilitator of the Nigeria-South Africa Group on Agriculture and a tireless advocate for farmers in her native South Africa. Chitsunge counts herself among the 70 percent of farmers who are women in South Africa. Despite the challenges,  she was able to buy her own land and works as a farmer and breeder of Kalahari Red goats, Nguni cattle, free range poultry, indigenous pigs and most recently Tilapia fish.

25297 UCSB 2013 Summit on Energy Efficiency – Steven Chu

Opening Keynote by Steven Chu, Secretary of Energy ’09-’13 and Professor at Stanford University, titled Materials Science Innovations in Energy Efficiency and Generation. Conference hosted in May, 2013 by the UCSB Institute for Energy Efficiency. 

25641Fat Chance: Fructose 2.0

Dr. Robert Lustig, UCSF Division of Pediatric Endocrinology, updates his very popular video Sugar: The Bitter Truth. He argues that sugar and processed foods are driving the obesity epidemic, which in turn affects our endocrine system. In UCTV’s documentary, The Skinny on Obesity, Dr. Lustig and his colleagues discuss the root causes of the obesity epidemic.

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