Hosts Norman Gilliland and Emily Auerbach invite distinguished faculty guests from the University of Wisconsin-Madison to discuss topics in music, art, writing, theater, science, education, and history. University of the Air can be heard on Sundays at 4 p.m.


  • The Influence of World Music

    The Influence of World Music


    Today, the phrase “world music” can mean any number of musical genres with origins outside the United States. But how did the international sound come to permeate our musical culture? Ronald Radano, UW-Madison Professor of Musicology and Ethnomusicology, shares samples of music showing international influences at the onset of the modern era, and explains how these influences were crucial in shaping the sound of past and present music.

  • The Pleasure of His Company: A Love Affair with Shakespeare

    The Pleasure of His Company: A Love Affair with Shakespeare


    Celebrated actors Randall Duk Kim and Anne Occhiogrosso present favorite scenes from the plays of the Bard of Avon.

  • Literacy for Life

    Literacy for Life


    In a recent study, Catherine Compton-Lilly followed a group of eight inner-city students from grade one through grade 11 to discover how time operates as a contextual factor in children’s lives as they progress through school and construct their identities as students and readers.

  • Adventures of an International Peace Broker

    Adventures of an International Peace Broker


    Behind the headlines of diplomatic breakthroughs, unofficial peace brokers do quiet and discreet work setting up negotiations between hostile nations. Our guest for University of the Air was a member of peace delegations that laid the groundwork for ending hostilities between India and Pakistan, North and South Korea, and North and South Vietnam. Joe Elder will tell us how he came to play the role of international peace broker, what the dangers were, and what it was like to meet in private with world leaders.

  • Aldo Leopold: The Radio Transcripts

    Aldo Leopold: The Radio Transcripts


    Professor Emeritus Stanley Temple explores Aldo Leopold's pioneering land ethic and shares some of Leopold's little-known radio shows from "College of the Air" from the 1930s. For a story about Leopold's radio talks and the search for his missing recordings, go to

  • Freud and a History of Psychoanalysis

    Freud and a History of Psychoanalysis


    Free association, transference—the Oedipus Complex. When he invented psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud also developed therapeutic techniques and concepts that, a hundred years later, are still part of our language. His analysis of dreams as wish fulfillment and his studies of repression led him to develop his theory of the unconscious and his concepts of the three-part structure of the human psyche—the id, the ego, and the super-ego. How well do his ideas about sex, compulsion, hate, death and guilt hold up today?

  • Three Women of the Civil Rights Movement

    Three Women of the Civil Rights Movement


    Craig Werner profiles three women who took big risks to become leaders of the Civil Rights Movement.

  • The Occupation of Japan

    The Occupation of Japan


    At the end of World War II, a variety of political and civic virtues helped make it possible for the United States to move decisively in just a few years to turn a defeated Japan into a self-sufficient country compatible with American interests. How much did Japanese civilians know about the outcome of the war and how did the Japanese receive the American occupation forces? And what did they think of the man in charge of the occupation—General Douglas MacArthur? Look at the occupation of Japan from the viewpoint of someone who experienced it firsthand.