Someone once observed that if Howard Stern and Krista Tippett had a love child, it would be Scott Jones. Scott liked that.
At "Give and Take,” Scott Jones talks with artists, authors, theologians, and political pundits about the lens through which they experience life. With empathy, humor, and a deep knowledge of religion, current events, and pop culture, Scott engages his guests in a free-flowing conversation that's entertaining, unexpected, occasionally bizarre, and oftentimes enlightening. He likes people, and it shows.
Past interviewees include Mark Oppenheimer, Melissa Febos, David French, Miroslav Volf, Dan Savage, Nadia Bolz-Weber, Rob Bell, and (yes) Krista Tippett.
Scott is the former host and producer of the popular Mockingcast podcast (https://themockingcast.fireside.fm) and an in-demand consultant on all things “pod.” He’s also the co-host, with Bill Borror, of New Persuasive Words (https://npw.fireside.fm). Scott is also a prolific writer, a frequent conference speaker, a PhD candidate in Theology, and an ordained minister.
A New Jersey native, Scott lives with his best friend and wife, Lindy, in the suburbs of Philadelphia with two rescue pit bulls that he swears are sensitive souls.
Episode 160: The Scientific Attitude: Defending Science from Denial, Fraud, and Pseudoscience, with Lee McIntyre
May 3rd, 2019 | 56 mins 5 secs
My guest is Lee McIntyre. His newest book is "The Scientific Attitude: Defending Science from Denial, Fraud, and Pseudoscience." Attacks on science have become commonplace. Claims that climate change isn't settled science, that evolution is “only a theory,” and that scientists are conspiring to keep the truth about vaccines from the public are staples of some politicians' rhetorical repertoire. Defenders of science often point to its discoveries (penicillin! relativity!) without explaining exactly why scientific claims are superior. In this book, Lee McIntyre argues that what distinguishes science from its rivals is what he calls “the scientific attitude”―caring about evidence and being willing to change theories on the basis of new evidence. The history of science is littered with theories that were scientific but turned out to be wrong; the scientific attitude reveals why even a failed theory can help us to understand what is special about science.
April 30th, 2019 | 41 mins 46 secs
My guest is Melissa Knox. Her new memoir is "Divorcing Mom: A Memoir of Psychoanalysis." Psychoanalysis was her family's religion instead of wafers and wine, there were Seconals, Nembutals, and gin. Baptized into the faith at fourteen, Melissa Knox endured her analyst's praise of her childlike, victimized mother who leaned too close, ate off Melissa's plate, and thought pedophile meant silly person. Gaslighted with the notions that she'd seduced her father, failed to masturbate, and betrayed her mother, Melissa shouldered the blame.
April 12th, 2019 | 42 mins 18 secs
My guest is Jonathan H. Marks. His new book is "The Perils of Partnership: Industry Influence, Institutional Integrity, and Public Health." Countless public health agencies are trying to solve our most intractable public health problems -- among them, the obesity and opioid epidemics -- by partnering with corporations responsible for creating or exacerbating those problems. We are told industry must be part of the solution. But is it time to challenge the partnership paradigm and the popular narratives that sustain it?
April 10th, 2019 | 43 mins 41 secs
My guest is Rachel Howard. Her newest book is "The Risk Of Us." What is the cost of motherhood? When The Risk of Us opens, we meet a forty-something woman who deeply wants to become a mother. The path that opens up to her and her husband takes them through the foster care system, with the goal of adoption. And when seven-year-old Maresa—with inch-deep dimples and a voice that can beam to the moon—comes into their lives, their hearts fill with love. But her rages and troubles threaten to crack open their marriage. Over the course of a year, as Maresa approaches the age at which children become nearly impossible to place, the couple must decide if they can be the parents this child needs, and finalize the adoption—or, almost unthinkably, give her up.
April 9th, 2019 | 45 mins 48 secs
My guest is Martin Dugard. He's the author of the critically acclaimed "To Be A Runner." Now with a new introduction and additional stories accumulated in the eight years since its original publication, To Be a Runner is a fresh and exciting update on a running classic. With an exuberant mix of passion, insight, instruction, and humor, bestselling author and lifelong runner Martin Dugard takes a journey through the world of running to illustrate how the sport helps us fulfill that universal desire to be the best possible version of ourselves each and every time we lace up our shoes.
Episode 155: Seculosity: How Career, Parenting, Technology, Food, Politics, and Romance Became Our New Religion and What to Do about It, with David Zahl
March 26th, 2019 | 1 hr 7 mins
My guest is David Zahl. His newest book is "Seculosity: How Career, Parenting, Technology, Food, Politics, and Romance Became Our New Religion and What to Do about It." At the heart of our current moment lies a universal yearning, writes David Zahl, not to be happy or respected so much as enough--what religions call "righteous." To fill the void left by religion, we look to all sorts of everyday activities--from eating and parenting to dating and voting--for the identity, purpose, and meaning once provided on Sunday morning.
March 22nd, 2019 | 43 mins 48 secs
My guest is Laura Davis-Chanin. Her new book is "The Girl In The Back: A Female Drummer's Life with Bowie, Blondie and the '70s Rock Scene." Nineteen seventy-seven. New York City. Dark. Dangerous. Thrilling. Punk Rock. Blondie. David Bowie. Drinking. Drugs. Happening at the speed of light. Seventeen-year old Laura quaking within her skin while the bursting punk rock revolution explodes around her starts a band with her teenage friends called the Student Teachers. She's the drummer. They play legendary clubs CBGB and Max's Kansas City. They rehearse madly write songs and tour the East Coast, all between final exams at school. In comes Jimmy Destri from Blondie. He thinks the Student Teachers are terrific! And then he falls in love with Laura. He pulls her into the glamorous life of Blondie and introduces her to David Bowie.
March 21st, 2019 | 1 hr 6 mins
My guest is David Shields. His new book, "The Trouble with Men: Reflections on Sex, Love, Marriage, Porn, and Power" is an immersion into the perils, limits, and possibilities of human intimacy. All at once a love letter to his wife, a nervy reckoning with his own fallibility, a meditation on the impact of porn on American culture, and an attempt to understand marriage (one marriage, the idea of marriage, all marriages), "The Trouble with Men" is exquisitely balanced between the personal and the anthropological, nakedness and restraint.
March 11th, 2019 | 52 mins 4 secs
My guest is Rabbi Evan Moffic. His newest book is "First the Jews: Combating the World’s Longest-Running Hate Campaign." News reports of and statistics about defaced synagogues and death threats against community centers are on the rise around the world. A rise in anti-Semitism from the right side of the political spectrum has been accompanied by a different kind of anti-Semitism from parts of the left revolving around the state of Israel.
March 5th, 2019 | 1 hr 3 mins
My guest is Nicholas Wolterstorff. World-renowned Christian philosopher. Beloved professor. Author of the classic "Lament for a Son." Nicholas Wolterstorff is all of these and more. His memoir, "In This World of Wonders," opens a remarkable new window into the life and thought of this remarkable man.
Episode 150: Hustle and Gig: Struggling and Surviving in the Sharing Economy, with Alexandrea J. Ravenelle
February 13th, 2019 | 45 mins 51 secs
My guest is Alexandrea Ravenelle. Her new book is "Hustle and Gig." Choose your hours, choose your work, be your own boss, control your own income. Welcome to the sharing economy, a nebulous collection of online platforms and apps that promise to transcend capitalism. Supporters argue that the gig economy will reverse economic inequality, enhance worker rights, and bring entrepreneurship to the masses. But does it?
February 8th, 2019 | 51 mins 32 secs
My guest is Olen Steinhauer. With "The Middleman", the perfect thriller for our tumultuous, uneasy time, Olen Steinhauer, the New York Times bestselling author of ten novels, including "The Tourist" and "The Cairo Affair", delivers a compelling portrait of a nation on the edge of revolution, and the deepest motives of the men and women on the opposite sides of the divide.
Episode 148: A Bright Future: How Some Countries Have Solved Climate Change and the Rest Can Follow, with Joshua S. Goldstein
February 6th, 2019 | 51 mins 1 sec
My guest is Joshua S. Goldstein. His newest book, co-authored with Staffan A. Qvist, is "A Bright Future: How Some Countries Have Solved Climate Change and the Rest Can Follow." As climate change quickly approaches a series of turning points that guarantee disastrous outcomes, a solution is hiding in plain sight. Several countries have already replaced fossil fuels with low-carbon energy sources, and done so rapidly, in one to two decades. By following their methods, we could decarbonize the global economy by midcentury, replacing fossil fuels even while world energy use continues to rise. But so far we have lacked the courage to really try.
February 1st, 2019 | 42 mins 26 secs
My guest is Eva Hagberg Fisher. Her new book, "How To Be Loved", is a luminous memoir about how friendship saved one woman’s life, for anyone who has loved a friend who was sick, grieving, or lost—and for anyone who has struggled to seek or accept help. Eva Hagberg Fisher spent her lonely youth looking everywhere for connection: drugs, alcohol, therapists, boyfriends, girlfriends. Sometimes she found it, but always temporarily. Then, at age thirty, an undiscovered mass in her brain ruptured. So did her life. A brain surgery marked only the beginning of a long journey, and when her illness hit a critical stage, it forced her to finally admit the long‑suppressed truth: she was vulnerable, she needed help, and she longed to grow. She needed true friendship for the first time.
Episode 146: Healing a Community: Lessons for Recovery after a Large-Scale Trauma, with Melissa Glaser
January 25th, 2019 | 38 mins 27 secs
My guest is Melissa Glaser. Her new book is "Healing a Community: Lessons for Recovery after a Large-Scale Trauma." After the horrific tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, local caregivers, civic leaders, and first responders had the daunting task of navigating emotional and physical trauma as they stitched their community back together. The recovery process takes years, and as the coordinator of the Newtown Recovery and Resiliency Team, Melissa Glaser managed the town’s response. She developed a unique set of therapeutic and transferable best practices that other communities can learn from. The impact of an intense media presence and the long-term financial needs of recovery work are also included in "Healing a Community."
January 16th, 2019 | 1 hr 5 mins
My guest is Edith Hall. Her newest book is "Aristotle's Way: How Ancient Wisdom Can Change Your Life." In expert yet vibrant modern language, Hall lays out the crux of Aristotle's thinking, mixing affecting autobiographical anecdotes with a deep wealth of classical learning. For Hall, whose own life has been greatly improved by her understanding of Aristotle, this is an intensely personal subject. She distills his ancient wisdom into ten practical and universal lessons to help us confront life's difficult and crucial moments, summarizing a lifetime of the most rarefied and brilliant scholarship.