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Society & Culture
History

History Today Podcast

Updated 2 months ago

Society & Culture
History
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A conversation about the world of history, featuring interviews with key historians and authors and discussions about historical themes and ideas. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Read more

A conversation about the world of history, featuring interviews with key historians and authors and discussions about historical themes and ideas. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

iTunes Ratings

18 Ratings
Average Ratings
3
8
5
0
2

Good, but...

By Chuck Some Cheese - Dec 06 2011
Read more
The analysts are really good, but the interviewer must be an intern because she sounds out of her depth. She hmmmmms a lot as she desperately searches for a question. You can sometimes hear her shuffle papers as she looks for the next thing to say, and the phone even rings in the background. She also extends her question into a million other ones, leaving the author to try and get her meaning. She must take some presenting classes and quickly.

iTunes Ratings

18 Ratings
Average Ratings
3
8
5
0
2

Good, but...

By Chuck Some Cheese - Dec 06 2011
Read more
The analysts are really good, but the interviewer must be an intern because she sounds out of her depth. She hmmmmms a lot as she desperately searches for a question. You can sometimes hear her shuffle papers as she looks for the next thing to say, and the phone even rings in the background. She also extends her question into a million other ones, leaving the author to try and get her meaning. She must take some presenting classes and quickly.
Cover image of History Today Podcast

History Today Podcast

Latest release on Jul 31, 2020

Read more

A conversation about the world of history, featuring interviews with key historians and authors and discussions about historical themes and ideas. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Rank #1: Helen Castor interview - Part 1

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In our first podcast for the History Today Book Club, History Today Editor Paul Lay talks to Helen Castor, author of our recommended book for July, She-Wolves: The Women Who Ruled England Before Elizabeth (Faber). In this podcast she discusses one of history’s most important themes – contingency – how the happenstance of Edward VI’s early death in 1553 meant that there were now only women left on the Tudor family tree.

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Jun 27 2011

5mins

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Rank #2: A History of Now

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Historian Michael Burleigh discusses his new book The Best of Times, the Worst of Times: A History of Now. Is the United States in permanent decline? Will China replace it as the global superpower? Are we entering a post-democratic world? And how do we prepare for the Fourth Industrial Revolution?

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Nov 01 2017

18mins

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Rank #3: The Origins of Islam

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In this episode we talk to Tom Holland, author of the cover story in the May issue of History Today, about his research into Islam's beginnings.

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Apr 25 2012

23mins

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Rank #4: The Inspiration for Tolkien's Ring

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Mark Horton tells the story of an archaeological dig that may have fuelled the fantasies of J.R.R. Tolkien.

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Dec 18 2013

13mins

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Rank #5: Making Sense of the Maya

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Nigel Richardson discusses how European explorers in the 19th century began to solve the mystery of who the Maya were, and how they established their remarkable civilisation.

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Apr 15 2013

12mins

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Rank #6: The Uncatchable Lizard

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In this episode, Dan Whitaker discusses the life of Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck, considered one of Germany's great war heroes for his guerrilla campaign during the First World War.

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Feb 12 2013

16mins

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Rank #7: A discussion about Mein Kampf

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Maiken Umbach and Neil Gregor join History Today editor Paul Lay to discuss the new critical edition of Hitler's notorious book.

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Feb 23 2016

18mins

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Rank #8: The Origins of the Shroud of Turin

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Charles Freeman discusses his research into one of history's greatest mysteries.

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Oct 29 2014

25mins

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Rank #9: "I Was Hitler's Neighbour"

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An interview with Edgar Feuchtwanger, who as a boy growing up in Munich witnessed the rise of Adolf Hitler at extraordinarily close range.

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May 23 2012

13mins

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Rank #10: Tibet's Secret Temple

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We discuss Tantric Buddhism with Ruth Garde, curator of a new show at the Wellcome Collection. Also: Marc Morris on King John and the siege of Rochester.

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Nov 25 2015

18mins

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Rank #11: The Disappearing Religions of the Middle East

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Gerard Russell and Tom Holland discuss the plight of religious minorities in Iraq and Syria.

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Nov 28 2014

15mins

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Rank #12: Murder in the Cathedral

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Paul Lay and Richard Dale discuss the mysterious death of a liveryman at St Paul's Cathedral in 1514.

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Dec 05 2014

12mins

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Rank #13: How Big and How Bad was the British Empire?

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In this episode, Bernard Porter discusses the British Empire, and finds that Britain's imperial reach was neither as great as once thought nor as pernicious as some historians argue.

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Sep 25 2012

13mins

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Rank #14: Tom Holland on Herodotus

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The History Today Podcast is back from a summer hiatus. In this episode, Tom Holland discusses his new translation of The Histories, by Herodotus.

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Sep 25 2013

13mins

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Rank #15: Day of the Dead

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In this episode, Amy Fuller discusses the myths surrounding Mexico's Day of the Dead, and Andrew Lownie talks about the obstacles facing historians trying to use the Freedom of Information Act to access government files.

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Oct 21 2015

27mins

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Rank #16: Magna Carta

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This episode is a Magna Carta special. We talk to Alexander Lock about the Charter's importance in America, and Lauren Johnson about the role of women in Magna Carta. Plus, a look at the British Museum's new display the medals of the Sun King.

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Jun 17 2015

33mins

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Rank #17: A Mystery in the Bayeux Tapestry

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The Bayeux Tapestry is among the most celebrated medieval objects, yet it still retains its mysteries. J.L. Laynesmith discusses one of the most intriguing of them.

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Oct 04 2012

11mins

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Rank #18: Ian Mortimer

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Ian Mortimer discusses historical fiction and his latest novel Sacred Treason with Kathryn Hadley.

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Jun 08 2011

15mins

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Rank #19: Turkey: A Short History with Norman Stone

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Kathryn Hadley interviews historian Norman Stone about his book Turkey: A Short History

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Mar 17 2011

9mins

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Rank #20: The Tower of London

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In this episode, Nigel Jones discusses the surprising history of the Tower of London, and Anthony Hornyold recalls his time in revolution-torn Iraq.

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Jul 04 2012

20mins

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The Rise of the Valkyries

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Life and death in a Viking battle depended not on military prowess, but on the favour of the valkyries. Why were these mythical figures, who decided a warrior’s fate, female?

This article was part of our Miscellanies series. Sign up to receive this free weekly long read in your inbox, at https://www.historytoday.com/miscellanies.

Written by Jóhanna Katrín Friðriksdóttir. Read by Greig Johnson. 

Music: Kai Engel.

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Jul 31 2020

9mins

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Henry VIII Meets his Match

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Shortly after 5pm on 7 June 1520, Henry VIII of England and Francis I of France met for the first time. That first meeting, and their time together over the following fortnight, became known to history as the Field of Cloth of Gold.

In a spirit of rivalry and cooperation, the two young Renaissance monarchs asserted their power and authority at one of the last great demonstrations of the chivalric age.

This article is from the July issue of History Today: buy a copy of the issue from our website, or read it via the History Today app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

Introduced by History Today editor, Paul Lay. Read by Greig Johnson. Written by Glenn Richardson.

Image: The Field of the Cloth of Gold, English, c.1545 © Getty Images.

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Jul 10 2020

21mins

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A History of the Oceans

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In this podcast, History Today Editor Paul Lay is joined by David Abulafia, winner of the 2020 Wolfson History Prize, for his book The Boundless Sea.

The Boundless Sea traces the history of human movement and interaction around and across the world's greatest bodies of water, charting our relationship with the oceans from the time of the first voyagers. 

David also wrote an article for the November 2019 issue of History Today, which you can read on our website: https://www.historytoday.com/archive/feature/virgin-islands-atlantic

Image: Caravel from 'Atlas of Lázaro Luis (detail), 1563. Bridgeman Images.

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Jun 26 2020

28mins

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The Wrongful Death of Toussaint Louverture

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The hero of the Haitian Revolution’s lonely death in a French prison cell was not an unfortunate tragedy but a cruel story of deliberate destruction.

This article is from the June issue of History Today: buy a copy of the issue from our website, or read it via the History Today app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

Introduced by History Today editor, Paul Lay. Read by Greig Johnson. Written by Marlene L. Daut.

Music: Kai Engel.

Image: Portrait of Toussaint Louverture, chromolithograph by George DeBaptiste, c.1870 © Getty Images.

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Jun 12 2020

23mins

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Toussaint Louverture and the Haitian Revolution

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Join Marlene Daut in conversation with History Today Editor, Paul Lay, as they discuss the background of the Haitian Revolution, Toussaint Louverture, and the revolution's legacies.

Marlene has written an article for the June issue of History Today on 'The Wrongful Death of Toussaint Louverture', which is also available to listen to as an audio long read on our podcast.

Buy a copy of the June issue from our website, or read it via the History Today app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

Marlene L. Daut is Professor of African Diaspora Studies at the University of Virginia and author of Tropics of Haiti: Race and the Literary History of the Haitian Revolution in the Atlantic World (Liverpool University Press, 2015).

Image: Toussaint Louverture fighting the French in Saint-Domingue, 19th-century engraving © Getty Images.

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Jun 12 2020

27mins

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Thebes: The Forgotten City

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The city of Thebes was central to the ancient Greeks’ achievements in politics and culture. For many centuries it has been largely – and often deliberately – forgotten.

Join Paul Cartledge in conversation with History Today Editor, Paul Lay, as they discuss Paul Cartledge's article on 'Thebes: The Forgotten City', which is in the June issue of History Today.

Buy a copy of the June issue from our website, or read it via the History Today app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

Paul's latest book, Thebes: The Forgotten City of Ancient Greece is published by Picador.

Image: Illustration for Seven Chiefs Against Thebes, c. 1794, John Flaxman. Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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May 29 2020

24mins

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The Great Migration Mystery

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In the 17th century, fanciful solutions to the mystery of the swallow’s whereabouts were the result of an intense battle over the nature of scientific reasoning, which had been raging for centuries – and which is still raging today.

This article is from the May issue of History Today. Buy a copy of this issue from our website, or read it via the History Today app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

Written by Alexander Lee. Read by History Today Editor, Paul Lay.

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May 15 2020

16mins

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The State of Myanmar

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Myanmar’s colonial legacy includes racial hierarchies and authoritarian government. In the new nation state, not everyone is welcome.

To understand why Rakhine State is in such turmoil we need to follow the threads of ethnic nationalism back to before Myanmar existed.

This article is from the May issue of History Today. Buy a copy of this issue from our website, or read it via the History Today app, available on Google Play and the App Store.

Introduced by History Today editor, Paul Lay. Read by Greig Johnson. Written by Ewan Cameron.

Music: Kai Engel. Illustration: Ben Jones.

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May 01 2020

10mins

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What can History tell us about Epidemics?

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Four historians discuss what we learn from history about how diseases spread, and how we respond to them.

Buy a copy of the April issue of History Today from our website: www.historytoday.com

John Henderson: ‘Strategies to cope with plague have formed the basis for later policies’. Read by Paul Lay.

Patricia Fara: ‘Fear and suspicion multiply more rapidly than any virus’. Read by Katie Holyoak.

Samuel Cohn: ‘Epidemics strike from the outside and are carried in’. Read by Paul Lay.

Sandra Hempel: ‘Smallpox remains the only human disease to be eradicated’. Read by Katie Holyoak.

Introductions read by James Gribben. Music by Kai Engel.




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Apr 10 2020

11mins

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The Rights of France

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France’s attraction to right-wing populism has been a constant, if shape-shifting, presence in its politics since the end of the 19th century.

This article appeared in the April 2020 edition of History Today. Read the article online or buy a copy of this issue from our website.

Written by Martin Evans

Read by Greig Johnson

Produced by History Today

Music by Kai Engel

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Mar 27 2020

23mins

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Soviet Super Sniper

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In 1942, Lieutenant Lyudmila Pavlichenko, a Soviet frontline sniper, was sent on a mission to convince US and British allies to open up a Second Front against Hitler’s forces.

Her arrival in Washington DC coincided with a historic moment of American-Soviet friendship, even while the press found the female sniper, with her claimed tally of 309 German kills, rather shocking.

Historian Dr Julie Wheelwright in conversation with History Today Editor, Paul Lay.

Julie's Article 'A Woman's Place', on Lyudmila Pavlichenko will be the April cover story of History Today, on sale from Thursday 19 March. Pre-order your copy now on the History Today website.

Julie's book 'Sisters in Arms: Female Warriors from Antiquity to the New Millennium' is published by Osprey.

Music: Kai Engel.

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Mar 13 2020

19mins

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Sexual Eeling

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In March 1876, the young Sigmund Freud arrived in Trieste, looking for the testicles of an eel. For centuries past, these troublesome organs had proved elusive. Despite the most intensive – not to say intimate – research, no one had managed to track them down. 

This article appeared in the March 2020 edition of History Today. Read the article online or buy a copy of this issue from our website.

Written by Alexander Lee

Read by Greig Johnson

Produced by History Today

Music by Kai Engel

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Feb 28 2020

12mins

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Before the Mayflower

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This year, the US looks back four centuries to an intrepid band of refugees making a perilous home in New England. The Mayflower pilgrims had been outlaws in England, members of an underground church known as the Brownists or Separatists. They believed church should be a voluntary community rather than a compulsory state religion. For their refusal to submit to the Church of England they had faced raids, prison, exile and death for the previous 60 years.

This podcast explores a previous expedition to North America. The Separatists had attempted to become the pilgrim fathers in Newfoundland as early as 1597.

Join Paul Lay, editor of History Today, in conversation with Stephen Tomkins, author of The Journey to the Mayflower: God’s Outlaws & the Invention of Freedom (Hodder & Stoughton, 2020).

You can read Stephen's article in the February issue of the magazine on our website, or buy a copy here.

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Feb 14 2020

20mins

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The FGM Scandal that Shocked Victorian London

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In 1867, a notorious divorce case revealed the horrific methods with which one London surgeon was treating his patients.

This article appeared in the February 2020 edition of History Today. Read the article online or buy a copy of this issue from our website.

Written by Sarah Wise

Read by Greig Johnson

Produced by History Today

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Feb 14 2020

23mins

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Trailer: A New Podcast Series from History Today

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In this new podcast series, we speak with historians who are leading in their field. Each episode will be on a different subject and era; and a chance to hear the stories, to ask questions and to indulge our curiosity, with the experts in the area.

These conversations will be interspersed with audio articles from the magazine. We’ve specially selected pieces that are eclectic, intriguing, and of course, informative. Our first piece is on the female genital mutilation scandal that shocked Victorian London.

Explore all areas of the past, guided by those who know the subjects best. And enjoy more from the leading authoritative history magazine.

The first two episodes will be available from 14 February.

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Feb 11 2020

1min

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A History of Now

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Historian Michael Burleigh discusses his new book The Best of Times, the Worst of Times: A History of Now. Is the United States in permanent decline? Will China replace it as the global superpower? Are we entering a post-democratic world? And how do we prepare for the Fourth Industrial Revolution?

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Nov 01 2017

18mins

Play

A discussion about Mein Kampf

Podcast cover
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Maiken Umbach and Neil Gregor join History Today editor Paul Lay to discuss the new critical edition of Hitler's notorious book.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Feb 23 2016

18mins

Play

Tibet's Secret Temple

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We discuss Tantric Buddhism with Ruth Garde, curator of a new show at the Wellcome Collection. Also: Marc Morris on King John and the siege of Rochester.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Nov 25 2015

18mins

Play

Day of the Dead

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In this episode, Amy Fuller discusses the myths surrounding Mexico's Day of the Dead, and Andrew Lownie talks about the obstacles facing historians trying to use the Freedom of Information Act to access government files.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Oct 21 2015

27mins

Play

Silk Roads Past and Present

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Peter Frankopan joins us to discuss the importance of viewing history not from a western or eastern perspective, but one that links the two together. Plus, Mathew Lyons and Catherine Fletcher on the plight of young academics.

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Sep 16 2015

36mins

Play

iTunes Ratings

18 Ratings
Average Ratings
3
8
5
0
2

Good, but...

By Chuck Some Cheese - Dec 06 2011
Read more
The analysts are really good, but the interviewer must be an intern because she sounds out of her depth. She hmmmmms a lot as she desperately searches for a question. You can sometimes hear her shuffle papers as she looks for the next thing to say, and the phone even rings in the background. She also extends her question into a million other ones, leaving the author to try and get her meaning. She must take some presenting classes and quickly.