Ep. 41 – Saving Lake Superior

The story of Lake Superior’s conservation recovery and what it can teach us in the face of climate change

The Four Horsemen of Capitalist Decline

Fredrik Erixon and Björn Weigel— Now, however, capitalism seems to have lost its founding spirit of enterprise. Four forces that guided the economy from the 1970s assisted in reducing the scope for experimentation and innovation. They are not the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, nor were they all undesirable, but

Continue reading…

The Homosexuality of Hitler(ism)

Gregory Woods— Most anti-Nazi voices, instead of praising National Socialism for having sluiced out the stables of Weimar and reimposed a moral discipline on the German people, allowed the lax reputation of Weimar to linger over Germany as a whole for the sake of British and American readers, and then developed

Continue reading…

Decoding the Voynich Manuscript

In this popular episode of the podcast, we try to unlock the secrets of the Voynich Manuscript with Raymond Clemens from the Beinecke Library and Joseph Calamia, senior editor at Yale University Press.

The London Cage

Helen Fry— Writing the history of spies, espionage and the intelligence services, especially MI6 or the CIA, poses its own particular challenges. Secret intelligence organisations are shrouded in myth and mystery, often self-created, and that attracts a certain public curiosity. How far historians can reconstruct the full truth is an

Continue reading…

Extremists Form Fellowships of Friends

Philippe-Joseph Salazar— One year ago an off-beat play about terrorism by Nobel-prize laureate Elfriede Jelinek premièred in Darmstadt,  Germany,  Wut  (Rage)  – at a time the country was straining both under a messy immigration often from countries who are suppliers of  jihadists, and terror attacks often presented by the police as

Continue reading…

The Exterminating Angel and the Entrapment of Guests

James A. W. Heffernan— Fifteen months ago, the Salzburg Festival first staged an opera that has just opened at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York:  Thomas Adès’s The Exterminating Angel. Based on Luis Buñuel’s 1962 film of that title, the opera tells the story of a lavish dinner party

Continue reading…

Leon Trotsky, a Hundred Years After the Russian Revolution

Joshua Rubenstein— The romantic figure of Leon Trotsky, a man who helped lead the Bolsheviks to power a hundred years ago and then came to embody defiance of Joseph Stalin, continues to haunt our imagination. He joined the Bolsheviks as an outspoken teenager, then endured arrest and Siberian exile before

Continue reading…

Ep. 8 – A History of Things That Go Bump in the Night

On this special Halloween edition of the podcast, cultural historian Leo Braudy, author of Haunted, sat down with us to talk about the history of monsters and other scary creatures. Spooky!

Æthelred, the Unready?

Levi Roach— Æthelred initially identified himself and his counsellors as the guilty parties and set about remedying his ways, restoring church lands, promoting new figures, fostering reform and making amends. This also coincided with his reconciliation with his mother, who was to remain his guiding hand till her death (999

Continue reading…