Cover art for podcast Distillations | Science History Institute

Distillations | Science History Institute

325 EpisodesProduced by Science History InstituteWebsite

Each episode of Distillations podcast takes a deep-dive into a moment of science-related history in order to shed light on the present.


Murder, Fraud, Sabotage, Piracy, and Other Dastardly Deeds Perpetrated in the Name of Science

The Disappearing Spoon, a podcast collaboration between the Science History Institute and New York Times best-selling author Sam Kean, returns for its second season on October 5, 2021.

To celebrate, our producer, Rigoberto Hernandez, sat down with Kean to talk about his new book The Icepick Surgeon: Murder, Fraud, Sabotage Piracy, and Other Dastardly Deeds Perpetrated in the Name of Science. This interview is a great companion piece for The Disappearing Spoon series since some of the stories in the book relate directly to some of the stories in the upcoming season.

In this interview Kean talks about some of the case studies in his book, including how Thomas Edison shifted his ethics on the death penalty because of a grudge, how a part-time chemist from Philadelphia became an unlikely spy, and how an American doctor purposefully infected people in Guatemala with venereal diseases—all in the name of science.

Hosts: Alexis Pedrick and Elisabeth Berry Drago Senior Producer: Mariel Carr Producer: Rigoberto Hernandez Audio Engineer: Jonathan Pfeffer

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