Streams

 

American History

The Takeaway

Bill O'Reilly on Lincoln, Obama, and the GOP Candidates

Monday, October 03, 2011

In 1865, the Civil War came to a close. But just six days after the confederate commanding general Robert E. Lee surrendered, President Abraham Lincoln was shot and killed by John Wilkes Booth at the Ford Theatre in Washington DC. It’s a story that most Americans know, but Bill O’Reilly has some new perspective on these historic events. O'Reilly, the host of Fox News's "The O’Reilly Factor," is also a former high school history teacher, a hobby historian, and co-author of a new book called "Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination That Changed America Forever."

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The Takeaway

The Life and Legacy of Stetson Kennedy

Monday, August 29, 2011

The scars and legacy of racism in America and poverty has ways of bubbling up to the surface in surprising ways.  Today that legacy shows up in the story of the life and death of a famous American folklorist, journalist and author, Stetson Kennedy, who died at the age of 94 over the weekend. Kennedy became famous for allegedly infiltrating the Ku Klux Klan as an undercover journalist, then exposing their secrets in a book, “I Rode with the Ku Klux Klan,” which was published in 1954. He spoke with This American Life's Ira Glass about his experience, in 2005.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

The Mindset Lists

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Tom McBride, professor of English and Keefer Professor of the Humanities at Beloit College, and Ron Nief, emeritus director of public affairs at Beloit College, discuss their new book The Mindset Lists of American History, which chronicles what has always and never been true for different generations and how that affects their worldview. 

Listeners: What has always and never been true for you? Has Michelangelo always been a turtle? Has there always been the Grateful Dead? Has there always been AIDS? Have you never needed to worry about being drafted? Tell us what year you turned 18 and what has always or never been true for you--and how you think that shapes how you see the world. Comment here!

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The Brian Lehrer Show

What If? Alternate US Histories

Monday, July 04, 2011

Jeff Greenfield, former senior political correspondent  for CBS News and the author of Then Everything Changed: Stunning Alternate Histories of American Politics: JFK, RFK, Carter, Ford, Reagan, offers alternate histories of modern American history.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Sarah Vowell on Unfamiliar Fishes

Friday, July 01, 2011

Sarah Vowell tells the history of the fiftieth state—Hawaii. Her latest book, Unfamiliar Fishes, gives an account of the transformation of the islands by New England missionaries who arrived in 1820, an incestuous princess pulled between her new god and her brother-husband, and also looks at sugar barons, lepers, con men, Theodore Roosevelt, and the last Hawaiian queen: a songwriter whose sentimental ode "Aloha 'Oe" serenaded Barack Obama, the first president from Hawaii, during his inaugural parade.

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The Takeaway

Larry Flynt on Sex Scandals that Changed American History

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

In recent decades, the public has been inundated with headlines of political sex scandals from former senator Larry Craig’s bathroom antics to president Bill Clinton’s numerous liaisons. While we’re encouraged to believe that sex scandals in politics are the exception, not the rule, a new book says that, in fact, great leadership and great promiscuity regularly go hand-in-hand.

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The Takeaway

Alan Cheuse on 'Song of Slaves in the Desert'

Monday, March 28, 2011

The history of slavery is interwoven with the history of America, but what most of us learn about in school is the history of white settlers. And even in that white history, there are particular characters — mostly Dutch and Anglo-Saxon Protestants. Not Catholics, and certainly not Jews. But that may be about to change. A new novel called “Song of Slaves in the Desert” centers on a slave family and its owners, who are Jewish. It’s written by Alan Cheuse, the novelist and George Mason University professor who you might know as the books reviewer for NPR’s All Things Considered.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Sarah Vowell's Unfamiliar Fishes

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sarah Vowell tells the history of the fiftieth state—Hawaii. Her latest book, Unfamiliar Fishes, gives an account of the transformation of the islands by New England missionaries who arrived in 1820, an incestuous princess pulled between her new god and her brother-husband, and also looks at sugar barons, lepers, con men, Theodore Roosevelt, and the last Hawaiian queen: a songwriter whose sentimental ode "Aloha 'Oe" serenaded Barack Obama, the first president from Hawaii, during his inaugural parade.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Emily Dickinson’s Family’s Feuds

Friday, June 18, 2010

Lyndall Gordon reveals a new side of Emily Dickinson, one of America's most significant literary figures.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

The Last Stand

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Bestselling author Nathaniel Philbrick tells the tale of two larger-than-life figures: Sitting Bull and George Armstrong Custer.

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Studio 360

The Riot of 1900

Saturday, November 12, 2005

At the turn of the 20th century, New Orleans was one of the few places in America where people of different races could play music together and live and work side by side. That delicate balance blew up in 1900, when the city’s native-born Whites, ethnic immigrants, Blacks, and Creoles ...

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Studio 360

Cakewalk

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Some parodies are so clever the subjects don't even realize they're being mocked. The cakewalk dance was created by slaves to poke fun at their white masters. And the clueless slave masters loved it. Jonathan Mitchell speaks with choreographer Diane MacIntyre about how the parody came full circle.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

A Great Improvisation

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Benjamin Franklin is widely remembered for his discovery of electricity. But according to Pulitzer Prize-winning author Stacy Schiff, his greatest achievement may have been his diplomatic skills in the years immediately after the Declaration of Independence was issued. Franklin persuaded the French government to provide the equivalent of $13 billion ...

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Studio 360

Tippecanoe and Tyler Too

Saturday, July 24, 2004

In 1840, when General William Henry Harrison was running for President, his campaign organized a gigantic rally on a battlefield in Indiana where Harrison had once led a regiment of armed settlers in a battle against the local Indians. Jackson Braider explains how that rally, and others like it, changed ...

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Studio 360

The Sounds of 1848

Saturday, June 19, 2004

When newcomers arrived in America they brought their music with them. Refugees from the Irish famine, which started in 1845, carried over some of the songs that we think of today as American standards, but when the tunes hit American soil, they changed. Fiddle player Paul Woodiel, Chris Layer, a ...

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Studio 360

Special Guest: Rebecca Solnit

Saturday, April 24, 2004

Kurt Andersen and the historian Rebecca Solnit get seduced by the cultural landscape of the American West.

Rebecca Solnit has dedicated her career to the American landscape. She helped re-photograph the sites made famous by Ansel Adams, to see how the Western vistas have changed. As a writer, art critic, ...

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Studio 360

Presidential Performances

Saturday, March 13, 2004

Stunts are becoming standard strategy this campaign season: John Kerry arrived on the stage of the Tonight Show on a motorcycle. Few have forgotten George W. Bush landing last May on the deck of an aircraft carrier. Andy Lanset looks at past Presidents and presidential hopefuls, who really knew how ...

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Studio 360

Special Guest: Randall Balmer

Saturday, November 22, 2003

Kurt Andersen and religion professor Randall Balmer look at the art of Evangelical Christians — from rock bands like P.O.D. to the best-selling Left Behind novels.

Randall Balmer is a professor of American Religion at Barnard College and an editor-at-large for Christianity Today. His books include the Encyclopedia of Evangelism ...

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Studio 360

Special Guest: Kara Walker

Saturday, October 18, 2003

Kurt Andersen and artist Kara Walker talk about creative darkness — from literal shadows to conceptual creepiness.

Artist Kara Walker is best known for cut-out silhouettes based on highly charged images of slavery and its legacy. Her work has been featured in solo exhibitions at the San Francisco ...

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