Episode 53 – A Brief History of NATO

NATO exercises in Nurenberg, Germany January 1986. “A Certain Sentinel” Photo by Nancy Wong

The current conflict in Ukraine has raised a lot of questions about Post-World War II Europe, the creation of strategic alliances in the second-half of the twentieth century, and the collpase of the Soviet Union in the 1990s and the effect it had on those relationships. At the center of many of these discussions sits NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Join us for this episode as we discuss, in rather broad terms, the rise of NATO and its reimagining after 1989. 

Episode 52 – More About the News

Michael Bennet and Wolf Blitzer, December 2019

We continue our series on the history of the news and journalism in the United States with a look at the CNN Effect and the emergence of the 24-hour news cycle. How has it changed the way American’s receive and respond to the news? Join us this week to find out.

Episode 51 – Newspapers and the News

Herald of Freedom (Boston), Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Politicians and journalists alike often claim Americans are more divided now than at any point in the nation’s past. Pundits and commentators point to the stark divisions in the news media we voraciously consume. MSNBC and Fox present strikingly different views on almost every subject. But is this really something new? Join us as we take a dive into the tawdry and titillating history news and newspapers in America. From colonial broadsides criticizing the British crown to abolitionists tracks to scandalous tales of foreign intrigue and even domestic violence, the news from America’s past seems strangely familiar in the 21st century.

Episode 50 – Civil War Medicine

Chimborazo hospital richmond civil war death certificate.png
By Collins, William A., 1841-1862 – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Public Domain, Link

In this episode Hilary and Geoff discuss common misconceptions about medicine during the Civil War. They also talk about key advances that take place in medical professionalization, surgery, the treatment of diseases, and even the expanding role of women in medicine.

Episode 49 – A History of Medicine – Part 1

Harvey – From the Motion of the blood. Wikimedia Commons

So, this week we start an extended series about the history of medicine. We start in Ancient Egypt and move around the Mediterranean finally ending up in Colonial America. Along the way we discuss the idea of bodily humors, the principal of extractive therapy, as well as the naissance of scientific approaches to medicine. We also discuss the critical and often unwilling role marginalized people played in the creation of medical knowledge.

Episode 47 – The Stonewall Rebellion

Uncredited Photo from the protests that occurred in the wake of Stonewall.

On June 28, 1969, what would normally have been a rather routine police bust of an unlicensed bar on New York City’s west side, sparked a series a riots and protests that birthed the modern Gay Pride movement. Who was there, who started the riot, who did the police target and many other details surrounding the night of the 28th as well as the subsequent nights of rioting has been a point of contention within the LGBT community ever since. Join us this week as we discuss the origins of Pride Month and the complicated beginnings of the LGBT rights movement.

Episode 46 – Great Awakenings

Camp meeting of the Methodists in N. America
/ J. Milbert del. ; M. Dubourg sculp. 1819. LOC

This week we delve into a topic we’ve been promising to cover for some time, the Second Great Awakening. This was the religious movement in the United States that spawned the Mormons and Adventists as well as the evangelical factions of more mainline churches. It truly was a time when American Christianity came into its own. As always, though, we’ll complicate things a bit and talk about the First Great Awakening and other religious movements before the founding of the United States.

Episode 45 – A History of Mormonism in America – Part 2

The Brigham Young Monument (or Pioneer Monument, a bronzed historical monument located on the north sidewalk of the intersection at Main and South Temple Streets of Salt Lake CityUtah. It was originally erected in the center of the intersection of Main and South Temple streets in 1897, where it stood until 1993, when it was moved a few yards north to its present location near the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.

This week we wrap up a very brief introductory history of Mormonism in America. We continue the story from the previous episode with the church’s reaction to the murder of Joseph Smith. We trace the rise of Brigham Young and the infamous Utah War. We end with the twentieth century church and its transition from fringe group to conservative religion.

Episode 44 – A History of Mormons in America – Part 1

The Kirtland Temple was the first temple built by the LDS Church. Construction began in 1833 and was finished three years later. Only a few years after it was built, the LDS Church lost ownership of the temple to a break-off group, now known as the Church of Christ. The temple is still in use by the Church of Christ today.

Join us for the first in a two-part series about a uniquely American religion, the Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints, or Mormonism. In this episode we discuss the origins of the religion and the competing threads of official church history, non-official folklore, personal accounts, and governmental records and interactions to construct a more complete picture of how this religion developed.

Episode 43 – More Cults in the 20th Century

Hale Bopp Comet in 1997 – Philipp Salzgeber, CC BY-SA 2.0 AT

We continue our exploration of the history of cults in America this week with a discussion of two infamous groups from the 1990s: The Branch Davidians and Heaven’s Gate. Both cults ended in the deaths of their charismatic leaders, but the trajectories were quite different. If you’re interested in the militia movement, UFOs, Nike sneakers, Star Trek, the Book of Revelations, the FBI, or how to get cheap real estate in Southern California you should join us this week!