Why We Dance

Aug 17, 2015

  Kimerer L. LaMothe is a dancer, philosopher, and scholar of religion.

She also loves to dance, every day, feeling it is vital for her wellbeing. And when she scans the landscape of human life, she sees dance everywhere—in the earliest human art, the oldest forms of culture, and in every culture around the world into the present.

But, she says, in the maps of and for human life that comprise the philosophy, theology, and religious studies of the modern west, dance occupies a surprisingly small space. So, she has explored that in her new book: Why We Dance.

  Forty years after the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling, “abortion” is still a word that is said with outright hostility by many, despite the fact that one in three American women will have terminated at least one pregnancy by menopause. Even those who support a woman’s right to an abortion often qualify their support by saying abortion is a “bad thing,” an “agonizing decision,” making the medical procedure so remote and radioactive that it takes it out of the world of the everyday, turning an act that is normal and necessary into something shameful and secretive.

In Pro, Katha Pollitt takes on the personhood argument, reaffirms the priority of a woman’s life and health, and discusses why terminating a pregnancy can be a force for good for women, families, and society. The book is out in paperback.

A western Massachusetts city is taking a unique step – actually, steps -- to encourage a healthier municipal workforce.  Healthcare officials hope what the city of Chicopee is doing will spread to other cities and towns.  

Beginning next month employees of the city of Chicopee can earn a $25 a month cash bonus by just walking an average of 7,000 steps a day, five days a week.  Mayor Richard Kos said he hopes in the long run the wellness incentive program will help reduce employee absences and lower the city’s health insurance premiums.

The 16th annual National Women's Health Week began on Mother's Day. The week is organized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health. The office's director Dr. Nancy Lee says it it important for women to take the time and the small steps necessary to maintain good health throughout their lives.


  Raymond Francis, a chemist and a graduate of MIT, once found himself in a hospital, battling for his life. The diagnosis: acute chemical hepatitis, chronic fatigue, multiple chemical sensitivities, and several autoimmune syndromes, causing him to suffer fatigue, dizziness, impaired memory, heart palpitations, diarrhea, numbness, seizures and numerous other ailments.

Knowing death was imminent unless he took action, Francis decided to research solutions for his disease himself. His findings and eventual recovery led him to conclude that almost all disease can be both prevented and reversed.

He writes about his journey in the new book: The Great American Health Hoax.

  Stacey Morris is a journalist and food writer, who has been working in this region for many years. Her latest project is a cookbook-memoir, Clean Comfort, which tells the story of the author's rocky relationship with food, how the dieting hamster wheel ballooned her weight to 345 pounds, and how she ultimately made her way back to balance and sanity - while loving food.

 For the countless individuals seeking to maximize their health and who consider vitamins to be the keys to well-being, Catherine Price's new book: Vitamania offers some context by looking into the roots of America's ongoing nutritional confusion.

Price traveled to vitamin manufacturers and food laboratories and military testing kitchens—and dove into the history of nutritional science. Vitamania explores the history, science, hype, and future of nutrition.

    Sarah Varney is a senior correspondent with Kaiser Health News. She also reports for NPR’s science and health desk and the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, and McClatchy newspapers. She has reported extensively on health policy and health disparities within the public health sphere, and she has contributed multiple stories to NPR’s "Living Large," a series on how obesity is changing life in America.

In her book, XL Love: How the Obesity Crisis is Complicating America's Love Life, she travels the country and tells the personal stories of men and women who are experiencing what millions of others feel every day, along with the stories of those who are in the business of helping them: physicians, researchers, scientists, psychologists, sociologists, and more.

  In 2006 when he was 50 years old, Michael Kovarik of Greenwich was a third-grade teacher in a South Colonie School when he felt a lump in his left breast. He never thought he would develop breast cancer, but he did.

Although male breast cancer is rare, it exists. Nationally, the American Cancer Society predicts 2,360 men will develop the disease this year and 430 will die from it. Contrast that with the 232,670 new cases in women and the prediction that 40,000 will die.

Kovarik has been working to raise awareness about male breast cancer and has written a book about his experience, Healing Within: My Journey with Breast Cancer.

9/18/14 Panel

Sep 18, 2014

  Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, University at Albany Journalism Professor and Investigative reporter, Rosemary Armao and Times Union Associate Editor, Mike Spain.

Topics include:
House ISIS Vote
Times Poll on Obama Security Plan
Times Square Security
Debtor Rules
Health Stories