BackStory show

BackStory

Summary: BackStory is a weekly public podcast hosted by U.S. historians Ed Ayers, Brian Balogh, Nathan Connolly and Joanne Freeman. We're based in Charlottesville, Va. at Virginia Humanities. There’s the history you had to learn, and the history you want to learn - that’s where BackStory comes in. Each week BackStory takes a topic that people are talking about and explores it through the lens of American history. Through stories, interviews, and conversations with our listeners, BackStory makes history engaging and fun.

Podcasts:

 262: Finding Americana: Butter Sculptures, Tiny Towns and Other Irresistible Gems | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3226

What could be more American than . . . butter carving? Maybe miniature roadside towns or perhaps a dead whale on a train. On this episode of BackStory, Ed, Brian and Nathan explore the best of Americana, finding the unique and the kitschy in American culture. (This show features two segments from previous episodes.)

 225: What’s Cooking? A History of Food in America | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3027

It’s the holidays -- that time of the year when food is everywhere. So, Brian, Joanne, and Nathan sit down to discuss some of America’s many homegrown culinary traditions and what the food we eat says about American identity. In this episode we talked to Pati Jinich of "Pati's Mexican Kitchen." Find her recipe for Chilorio Burritas (and more) on her website. We also talked about Maida Heatter's "Best Damn Lemon Cake." Learn more about Heatter and find her lemon cake recipe (as well as a few other desserts) in this 1982 story from the Washington Post. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

 261: Playing the Past: Video Games and American History | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3396

The Department of Defense developed the very first video game and the Oregon Trail taught a generation to live as a pioneer. Red Dead Redemption 2 might be a major commercial success, but how historically accurate is it of the Old West? On this episode, Brian, Nathan and Ed explore the relationship between history and video games in America. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

 260: The BackStory Holiday Book Show: 19 History Books for the Holiday Season | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3699

What history books should you gift - or get- this holiday season?  BackStory’s hosts and special guests share their recommendations of the history page turners you should pack for the holidays. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

 259: Out of the Closet: The LGBTQ Community in American History | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 4777

Brian, Nathan and Joanne explore the history of the LGBTQ community in the US, from tales of gender fluidity in the Old West to early gay liberation, and from the political career of Harvey Milk to the barrier breaking career of one SFPD cop.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

 230: Forgotten Flu: America & the 1918 Pandemic | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 2620

The CDC recommended flu shots for all this year after more than 80,000 Americans succumbed to influenza in 2017 - a four-decade high. But 100 years ago, a strain of H1N1 that was first found in soldiers in the spring of 1918 rapidly spread across the United States killing about 675,000 by 1919 and making it “the most severe pandemic in recent history,” according to the CDC. Brian, Nathan, and Joanne look back at the so-called “Spanish Flu,” how it affected the U.S., and why it’s often overlooked today.

 257: Stuffed: Taxidermy in the History of America | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 4165

This Thanksgiving week BackStory is all about stuffing and being stuffed. We’ll find out about the father of American natural history dioramas, talk to a man with a condor in his freezer, discover how a mischievous raven connects Edgar Allan Poe to Charles Dickens and unravel the extraordinary story of the man who proposed stuffing the Founding Fathers. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

 256: Divided States of America? The History of An Often Disjointed Union | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3435

Google the phrase “divided America” and you’ll find numerous, stories, opinion pieces and even psychological theories on why we’re so disconnected. From race and class to gender and politics, it seems that Americans can’t see eye-to-eye - to the point that a recent NBC News headline stated, “Americans are divided over everything except division.” On this episode, Ed, Nathan and Joanne look at other times in history when Americans were split.

 255: Lincoln the Lawyer: Abraham Lincoln’s Early Life and Career | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3283

Abraham Lincoln wasn’t the first lawyer to occupy the Oval Office (and he wouldn’t be the last). Lincoln came to national prominence after a long career settling disputes between farmers and representing litigious railway companies. So what did this enterprising lawyer pick up along the way and how did his legal career influence the President he became? Ed and guest host Lindsay Graham of the American History Tellers podcast explore the career of Lincoln the Lawyer. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

 184: Border Patrols: Policing Immigration in America | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 2257

Thousands of Central American migrants, dubbed the “migrant caravan,” have traveled north on foot towards the U.S. border since mid-October. Originating in Honduras, the group includes men, women and children attempting to escape high poverty, violence and corruption. In response, President Trump deployed 5,200 active duty troops to the U.S. border with Mexico this week and indicates that number could reach 15,000. On this episode of BackStory, Brian, Nathan and Joanne consider the origins of illegal immigration and look at how the government’s deportation powers have grown over time.

 254: The War to End All Wars: Remembering WWI | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 2939

On November 11, 1918, Germany formally surrendered to the Allied Powers, about 19 months after the United States entered the conflict. On this episode, Brian and Nathan reflect on how, 100 years later, “the war to end all wars” is still with Americans.

 253: To be a Citizen? The History of Becoming American | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3270

Around three quarters of a million people applied to be American Citizens in 2017. But what does citizenship actually mean? The way Americans have defined citizenship has changed over time and many have found their citizenship challenged, undermined, resisted and even revoked. On this episode of BackStory, Brian, Nathan and Joanne discover the path to citizenship has never been easy.

 252: Thar She Blows Again: The History of Whales and America (Part 2) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 3892

BackStory is a weekly public podcast hosted by U.S. historians Ed Ayers, Brian Balogh, Nathan Connolly and Joanne Freeman. We're based in Charlottesville, Va. at Virginia Humanities. There’s the history you had to learn, and the history you want to learn - that’s where BackStory comes in. Each week BackStory takes a topic that people are talking about and explores it through the lens of American history. Through stories, interviews, and conversations with our listeners, BackStory makes history engaging and fun.

 251: Thar She Blows: The History of Whales and America | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 2684

BackStory is a weekly public podcast hosted by U.S. historians Ed Ayers, Brian Balogh, Nathan Connolly and Joanne Freeman. We're based in Charlottesville, Va. at Virginia Humanities. There’s the history you had to learn, and the history you want to learn - that’s where BackStory comes in. Each week BackStory takes a topic that people are talking about and explores it through the lens of American history. Through stories, interviews, and conversations with our listeners, BackStory makes history engaging and fun.

 250: Land of the Free? The History of Incarceration in the U.S. | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 2339

(Contains archival audio in segments 1 and 3 (see backstoryradio.org for details).) The United States imprisons more of its citizens than any other nation in the world. This month prisoners across the U.S. took part in a National Prison strike protesting how they are used as cheap labor, and calling for an end to “prison slavery.” In this episode, Brian, Nathan and Joanne reflect on the history of prison labor and learn more about the challenges facing those behind bars. 

Comments

Login or signup comment.