Interviews & Profiles

The Science of Altering Consciousness

Among scientists, there are tentative signs of a psychedelics renaissance. After decades of stigma, impressive research is showing the power of these substances to help sufferers of depression and addiction, or to comfort patients with a terminal cancer diagnosis, struggling to face their own end. This is the fascinating territory that the journalist Michael Pollan explores with his new book, “How to Change Your Mind.” Pollan dives into brain science, the history of psychedelics (and our tortured attitudes towards them) but his larger subject is the nature of human consciousness.

Michael Pollan Tried a Series of Psychedelic Drugs…For Research!

As an immersive author, Michael Pollan experienced the effects of the best-known psychedelic drugs while researching for his book ‘How to Change Your Mind.’

Michael Pollan on testing psychedelics as a treatment for depression

After decades in the shadows, psychedelic drugs are the focus of new studies testing their efficacy at treating a variety of psychological issues, including depression. Appearing on “CBS This Morning” Monday, Pollan was asked how he started in his research into psychedelics.

Michael Pollan: ‘I was a very reluctant psychonaut’

Michael Pollan first became interested in new research into psychedelic drugs in 2010, when a front-page story in the New York Times declared, “Hallucinogens Have Doctors Tuning in Again”. The story revealed how in a large-scale trial researchers had been giving terminally ill cancer patients large doses of psilocybin – the active ingredient in magic mushrooms – to help them deal with their “existential distress” as they approached death. The initial findings were markedly positive. Pollan, author of award-winning and bestselling books about botany, food politics and the way we eat, was born in 1955, a little too late for the Summer of Love.

The Tim Ferriss Show: Exploring the New Science of Psychedelics

Michael talks with Tim Ferriss about his new book, the science and applications of psychedelics, his exploration, and his own experiences.

The Upshot podcast: Psychedelic Cure

Michael speaks with Leah Rose about the renaissance of psychedelic research. Listen here.

Big Food

Michael Pollan thinks Wall Street has way too much influence over what we eat.

Can Plants Think?

Plants can hear, taste and feel, as Michael Pollan writes in his latest piece for The New Yorker. But is any of that evidence of intelligence? Click here to listen.

Michael Pollan Talks About Braises and Barbeque

When it was time for the audience at Portland’s Newmark Theater to ask Michael Pollan a question, the first out of the gate was: what are the five things that are always in your fridge? His answer: “Eggs. Milk. Yogurt. Mustard. Ketchup.” Other people wanted to know what he thought of Mark Bittman’s idea of being vegan before

You Are What You Cook

In his new book Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation, Michael Pollan takes a tour of the most time-tested cooking techniques, from southern whole-hog barbecue and slow-cooked ragus to sourdough baking and pickle making. Listen to Michael on NPR’s Science Friday or read the transcript here.