Right Now in Stuff You Should Know

Poetry is a broad and expansive art form. From dramatic verse to haiku, rhyming poetry and spoken word, there are many hats a poet can wear. Join Josh and Chuck today as they break down the history of poetry, a dive into what's so great about it.

SYSK Selects: How Revisionist History Works

In this week's SYSK Select episode, perhaps you equate the term to conspiracy theories and Holocaust denials, but revisionism is a genuine discipline in the field of historical study. And thanks to revisionists, we now include a lot more reality – and previously unsung people – in the history of our nations. Learn about historians determined that history is far from set in stone in this episode.

How Multiple Sclerosis Works

When the immune system mistakes the tissue covering neural connections as foreign invaders, the result can devastate the body. There is hope, however, in a new radical treatment that resets the immune system.

How the National Security Council Works

Until recently, most people probably never paid much attention to the National Security Council. It's been around a long time though, and the president has quite a bit of leeway as to who sits at the table. Learn all about this important group of individuals in today's episode.

SYSK Selects: How Breast Implants Work

In this week's SYSK Select episode, the first attempt at breast augmentation surgery was on a dog. The second on a woman who went in for tattoo removal. From those weird origins hundreds of thousands of breast implant procedures are now carried out each year. Find out all about the advancements and techniques in increasing your bust.

How Swearing Works

Swearing is something that's been done across all cultures, virtually since humans began speaking. What is it about these taboo words that offend some, and are beloved by others? Does it help to relieve stress to swear? Are there general rules of thumb about when it's OK to swear? All of your questions are answered in today's episode.

How Corsets Work

Sure, we're doing an episode on corsets. Why do you ask?

SYSK Selects: Lying Liars: How Lying Works, Liar

In this week's SYSK Select episode, studies find that absolutely everyone lies – some have found as much as a quarter of our daily interactions involve lies. What gives with everyone fudging? Chuck and Josh explore the philosophy, psychology and reality of lying and what constitutes a liar.

How Supervolcanoes Work

Until recently, volcanologists thought supervolcanoes were simply massive volcanoes. But further research has revealed that they are far different - and far more dangerous - than previously imagined.

How Supreme Court Nominations Work

Being nominated as a Supreme Court Justice is no small thing, and it doesn't always go as planned. With this week's confirmation of Justice Gorsuch, Josh and Chuck take a look at the process of getting named to America's highest court.

SYSK Selects: Can you die of a broken heart?

In this week's SYSK Select episode, in the early 1990s, Japanese researchers found a strange anomaly in their study subjects, five people who had inexplicable heart attacks. From this first investigation has come a scientific mystery: Is it possible that the sudden loss of a loved one can be so difficult to bear that it can actually cause a heart attack and maybe kill you? Could the romantics be right?

How Empathy Works

Empathy can often be confused with sympathy and regular old compassion. But it's not exactly either one of those. Some say a lack of empathy can indicate sociopathic tendencies, but that's not always true either. So what is empathy and what makes someone prone to empathize? Listen in to find out.

Composting: Nature's Most Interesting Process

You may think composting is just a bunch of old banana peels rotting away into dirt but, friend, you're not looking closely enough. Inside that compost pile is a microcosmic universe doing some magical stuff.

SYSK Selects: How Filibusters Work

In this week's SYSK Select episode, although lots of people incorrectly believe the filibuster was an intentional rule created by the founders of the U.S., this ancient method of stalling legislation was actually brought about in America by accident. Learn the ins and outs of this contentious quirk of parliamentary rules that allows a single senator to hijack the proceedings of the entire legislative body in this episode.

The Shroud Of Turin: No Ordinary Bed Sheet

The Shroud of Turin is no ordinary bed sheet. Some think it's the burial cloth of Jesus. Others think it's an amazing piece of artwork. The truth is, we'll probably never know what it really is. The mystery of the Shroud of Turin awaits you...

How Foreign Accent Syndrome Works

Foreign accent syndrome isn't when your mom talks funny when she goes abroad. It's an actual condition where people wake up one day with an entirely different accent, usually from some kind of head trauma. Learn all about this decidedly rare affliction today.

How the Hyperloop Will Work

If you’re out there, Elon Musk, this one’s for you (although you already know everything in this episode). Everybody else, buckle in and sit back for a 700 mph thrill ride from LA to SF in 35 minutes - coming soon!

Solitary Confinement: Cruel and Unusual

In our continuing exploration of crime and punishment, we take a look at the practice of solitary confinement. To be sure, it has its place in prisons, sometimes for protection of the inmates themselves. However, leaving people in solitary for weeks, months and even years is another thing. We explore this cruel and unusual punishment in today's episode.

Southerners Aren’t Lazy and Dumb, They Just Had Hookworm

There was a time when the lower classes of the American South were considered lazy and dimwitted, a stereotype that still somewhat survives today. But this stereotype was rooted in fact. Hookworms, it turns out, were sapping Southerners’ life force.

Pain Scales: Yeeeow!

Pain is subjective; it is whatever the person experiencing it says it is. But to effectively treat pain, it helps to quantify it, which is why medicine came up with pain scales.