With Good Reason-logo

With Good Reason

Arts & Culture

Each week on With Good Reason we explore a world of ideas with leading scholars in literature, history, science, philosophy, and the arts. With Good Reason is created by Virginia Humanities and the Virginia Higher Education Broadcasting Consortium.

Each week on With Good Reason we explore a world of ideas with leading scholars in literature, history, science, philosophy, and the arts. With Good Reason is created by Virginia Humanities and the Virginia Higher Education Broadcasting Consortium.


Charlottesville, VA


Each week on With Good Reason we explore a world of ideas with leading scholars in literature, history, science, philosophy, and the arts. With Good Reason is created by Virginia Humanities and the Virginia Higher Education Broadcasting Consortium.




145 Ednam Drive, Charlottesville, VA 1 877 451 5098

Listen on a live station

Plant Music Hour

If plants could talk, what would they say? What if they could sing? Sam Nester, Yassmin Salem, and Donald Russell explain how George Mason University’s Arcadia installation turns a greenhouse into an orchestra. And: Fossils give away the secrets of the past, but they can also tell the future. Rowan Lockwood is taking a closer look at the fossils of giant oysters to learn how to rebuild oyster reefs today. Lockwood was named a 2019 Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award recipient. Later in the...


Entertain Us

More and more often, celebrities are home-grown in front of a ring light and iPhone. As viewers keep scrolling past these insta-celebs, they’re starting to see themselves differently. Miriam Liss and Mindy Erchull say we compare ourselves to what we see despite knowing all that glitters isn’t gold. And: Have you been running to Twitter to cope with the crazy news cycle over the past year? John Brummette says it's a common coping mechanism. Later in the show: Long before social media, there...


Protecting Human Rights

Kirsten Gelsdorf has spent over 20 years working for the United Nations and other organizations in the humanitarian sector. She discusses her experience in disaster zones and clears up some commonly-held misconceptions about humanitarian aid. And: Earlier this year, Virginia became 1 of only 10 states to pass a Bill of Rights for domestic workers. But Jennifer Fish says while it’s certainly a step in the right direction, these protections often exist only on paper. Jennifer has been named an...


Let's Take A Walk

Thanks to COVID-19, many of us are more closely tuned in to the environment around us than ever before. We’re spending more time hanging outdoors, planting kitchen gardens, and taking up bird-watching. In honor of Earth Day and our new relationship with the great outdoors, With Good Reason invites you to walk with us. We venture into dark caves with Ángel García, traipse around the foothills of Appalachia with Ryan Huish, explore the mini-ecosystems of fallen trees with Deborah Waller, and...


Furious Flower: A Celebration of the Greats of African American Poetry

In 2019, the most notable poets of our time gathered in the nation’s capital to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Furious Flower Poetry Center, devoted to African American poetry. Furious Flower founder, Joanne Gabbin and Lauren Alleyne join us in-studio to celebrate poets and hear excerpts from interviews with Toni Morrison, Maya Angelou, Rita Dove, Sonia Sanchez, and many others. Later in the show: Widely known for his poem called “Facing It” about the Vietnam War, Pulitzer...


The Waters

We have a lot to do with what happens to rainwater from the time it hits the ground, to the time we drink it. And our small efforts can add up over time to prevent catastrophe. Kathy Gee has great advice for us: don’t live downhill from someone else, and start a rain garden. And: Along Appalachian streams, people grew up watching the hellbenders swim around and fight beneath the surface. Now, their grandchildren have hardly ever seen the two-foot long salamanders, affectionately called snot...


A Woman's Place

The Women’s March in January 2017 was the largest single-day protest in U.S. history. Anywhere from 3 to 5 million Americans--most of them women--took to the streets in the U.S. and around the globe. But while women have certainly made their voices heard in massive protests like that one, women’s activism often looks like radical everyday acts. Lori Underwood and Dawn Hutchinson share some of their favorite examples from their book on social change and women’s activism around the world. And:...


Bigger Than A Game

Serena Williams is widely regarded as one of the best athletes of all time. But far too often her passion on the tennis court has been criticized as aggression. So why do Black sports women seem to attract more scrutiny than other athletes? Letisha Engracio Cardoso Brown says it’s because the same commonly-held stereotypes for Black women in society frequently get repurposed into sport. And: The USA men’s basketball team boasted a perfect Olympic record of 63-0. But Russia had developed a...


Who Votes?

Remember those twelve months where every ad was asking you to vote? It was inescapable. Gilda Pedraza and her team worked around the clock to ensure Latino voters in Georgia had the information they needed to cast their ballot. But even with historic voter turnout, a third of eligible adults didn’t vote. Bernard Fraga says that’s a political failure, and not the failure of individual voters. Plus: Kathleen Hale and Mitchell Brown have spent years traveling the country talking to election...


Music Matters

We all know that teenagers would rather die than hang out with their parents, right? Not so, says Jon Lohman. The Old Fiddlers Convention in Galax, Virginia, brings young and old together to share traditions and songs. But how are musicians faring during the pandemic? Plus: The studio comes alive with song when Steve Rockenbach and Gregg Kimball bring their banjos in to share the instrument’s storied history in America. They reflect on how the banjo’s transformation has affected song styles...


New Voices At The Table

In 2016, Lashrecse Aird made history as the youngest woman ever elected to the Virginia House of Delegates. She says her unique perspective - shaped by a childhood of adversity and hardship - allows her to better serve the full range of experiences within her constituency. And: Ebony Guy was inspired to get involved in activism from a young age by her grandmother, a beloved civil rights leader in Halifax County, Virginia. Now a board member at Virginia Organizing - her activist work has...


Invisible Founders

Scholars, historic interpreters, and descendants of enslaved people recently gathered at Montpelier, the home of James Madison. They were there to create a rubric for historic sites who want to engage descendant communities in their work. Anthropologist Michael Blakey discusses why historical sites must consider the needs and wishes of descendants. And: Historian Hasan Kwame Jeffries says we need to do more to teach our kids about African American history, even when it covers tough subjects....


Taking The Shot

In mid-December, UVA Health physician Taison Bell rolled up his sleeve to be one of the first people in Charlottesville to get a COVID-19 vaccine. Today he shares why he got the vaccine and how we can get it to as many Americans as possible. Bell was named a 2021 Outstanding Faculty member by The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. And: Navigating social lives in the time of Covid can be awkward. How do you tell your friends, ”No, I won’t be joining you at that restaurant, but...


My Pandemic Valentine

We’re drawn to people who are kind to others. But once that kind person becomes our partner, we want special treatment. Lalin Anik says that we get a boost from feeling our "uniqueness" affirmed. She shares just how critical that special treatment is to a fulfilling relationship. And: Can one person really satisfy all of our needs? Julian Glover says no. They share how non-monogamy can be a freedom practice. Later in the show: Studies show that the more we look at screens, the less we feel...


Expanding The Franchise

Dwayne Betts was only a teenager when he was convicted of carjacking and sentenced to 9 years in prison. Today, he’s an acclaimed poet and PhD candidate at Yale Law School. He recounts his inspiring story and brings attention to one of the biggest civil rights issues of our time: felon disenfranchisement. Later in the show: Think immigrant voting is un-American? Think again. Ron Hayduk says it’s as American as apple pie. Plus: We take for granted that 18 is the voting age. But it wasn’t...


Y'all Alright?

While people planned socially distanced funerals and waited in miles-long lines for canned food, the stock market soared and brought the GDP with it. The pandemic has revealed that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is a poor measure of economic and societal health. Stephen Macekura’s new book, The Mismeasure of Progress, explores GDP and the long history of those who have critiqued it. And: The 2008 financial crisis scared investors. So they parked their money in huge land grabs for farms that...


Ghost Lights

When theatres, clubs, and bars shuttered their doors back in March, Michael-Birch Pierce and their fellow drag queens took to the streets - literally. Also: After growing up in the Philippines, Francis Tanglao Aguas realized that he’d spent a lot of time on colonized soil. That’s why he founded Aguas Arts Ink, a digital theatre collective dedicated to decolonizing the body and mind. Then: How do you dance in a space that technically doesn’t exist? Dancer and choreographer Scotty Hardwig...


Teen Spirit

Today’s teens--Generation Z--are making headlines for their politics and their protests. The YA books that speak to them have followed suit. Lisa Koch shares three of her favorite recent young adult books that are speaking to a wider world of culture and politics. And: Old school guidance counselors sit behind their desks, giving one-on-one sessions that can feel like pulling teeth for moody kids. Natoya Haskins’ days as a guidance counselor were spent on her feet, in the hallways, in group...


The Shondaland Revolution

Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder aren’t just popular tv shows--they’re also groundbreaking. Michaela Meyer says Shonda Rhimes has changed the way we make and watch TV. Also: Imelda O’Reilly published her first poem when she was just seven years old. Now a filmmaker, her short film Eggs and Soldiers examines a single father and son struggling to adjust to life in New York after emigrating from Ireland. Later in the show: Screen icon John Wayne and director John Ford...


Music That Mends

David Coogan is the editor of “Writing Our Way Out” written by former jail inmates, exploring the conditions, traps and turning points on their paths to imprisonment, as well as the redemptive power of writing. Jazz musician Antonio Garcia composed a musical piece “Open Minds: Music that Mends,” that reflects the book’s themes of social justice, healing, self-reflection and redemption. Music performed by the VCU Commonwealth Singers, directed by Dr. Erin Freeman. And: Josh Iddings looks at...