Professor Buzzkill History Podcast | History Myths and Misconceptions Buzzkilled!2021-01-13T12:40:14-05:00

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History Myths Buzzkilled

Presidential Transitions in American History

Even though nothing tops the 2020-2021 Trump-Biden "transition," presidential transitions have not always been smooth and stable in American history. Professor Philip Nash explains all and puts historical transitions in the context of what's happening now. Episode #402 Buzzkillers can enjoy free membership at Hark Audio, the coolest new thing in the podcast world. Go to and sign up with the code “Buzzkill”! --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Winter War: Hoover, Roosevelt, and the First Clash Over the New Deal Hardcover – November 20, 2018 by Eric Rauchway (Author) “Winter War” is the history of the most acrimonious presidential handoff in American history -- and of the origins of twentieth-century liberalism and conservatism As historian Eric Rauchway shows in Winter War, FDR laid out coherent, far-ranging [...]

Girls to the Rescue: Young Heroines in American Series Fiction of World War I

During World War I, many young American women longed to be part of a larger, more glorious war effort. A new genre of young adult books entered the market, written specifically with the young girls of the war period in mind, and demonstrating the wartime activities of women and girls all over the world. Professors Emily Hamilton-Honey and Susan Ingalls Lewis explain the historical significance of this literature! Episode #401 Go to Project Gutenberg to Find Some of These Books: --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Girls to the Rescue: Young Heroines in American Series Fiction of World War I Paperback – May 11, 2020 by Emily Hamilton-Honey (Author), Susan Ingalls Lewis (Author) During World War I, as young men journeyed overseas to battle, American women maintained [...]

Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence

Dr. Kate Lemay from the National Portrait Gallery tells us about the popular historical exhibition, “Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence.” She outlines the movement for women to obtain the right to vote as part of the larger struggle for equality, and tells us how that was shown in portraiture. A great show to finish the 1920-2020 centennial! Episode #400. Here’s the link to the exhibition webpage: And here’s the link to The Pudding, the website that Dr. Lemay mentioned near the end of the show: --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Kate Clark Lemay, Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence, with contributions by Dr. Susan Goodier, Dr. Lisa Tetrault, and Dr. Martha Jones A richly illustrated history of women’s suffrage in the United [...]

“It’s a Wonderful Life” Myths and Urban Legends

Imagine being tortured by wartime memories. Explosions, death, mutilated bodies (some of them friends of yours), all the screaming. Now, imagine them coming from a very confined and dangerous place. I’ve always thought that being in a warplane or submarine would add the extra stress of being trapped, and not even being able to contemplate running away from the situation. If you leave a submarine, you’ll drown. If you leap out of an airplane without having first put on a parachute, you’ll fall to your death. You’re trapped. Of course, even the most vivid and active imagination can’t come close to the horrifying realities of war, and having to live with those images forever. And, if I’m right about the added submarine and airplane stress, [...]

Christmas: Commercialism, FDR, the Nazis, and Beyond!

Professor Philip Nash explains the complexities of the celebration and commercialism of Christmas -- from the Roman holiday of Saturnalia to the Victorian era to the Nazi period and beyond! Listen to the best explanation of the history of modern Christmas that you're gonna find this side of Bethlehem! Episode #387 --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Gerry Bowler, Christmas in the Crosshairs: Two Thousand Years of Denouncing and Defending the World's Most Celebrated Holiday An Anglican priest hands out brass knuckles to his congregation, preparing to battle anti-Christmas fanatics. Fascists insist that the Winter Solstice is the real Christmas, while Communists stage atheist musicals outside of churches on Christmas Eve. Activists vandalize shops that start touting the holiday in October and anti-consumerists sing parody carols in shopping [...]

“I, Eliza Hamilton” and “The Secret Wife of Aaron Burr” – Fiction Friday!

Historical novelist, Susan Holloway Scott, joins us to discuss two of her fabulous books -- "I, Eliza Hamilton" and "The Secret Wife of Aaron Burr." We learn a lot about these historical figures, but also how historical novelists are able to create characters from the past. Episode #396 Susan Holloway Scott is the author of over fifty historical novels and novellas. Her bestselling books have received numerous awards and honors, and with more than three million copies of her books in print, she has been published in nineteen foreign countries around the world. --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Susan Holloway Scott, I, Eliza Hamilton In this beautifully written novel of historical fiction, bestselling author Susan Holloway Scott tells the story of Alexander Hamilton’s wife, Eliza—a fascinating, strong-willed [...]

George Washington and the Development of the Cabinet

How and why did George Washington create the cabinet structure that he used in his Presidency? How did it help create new political norms and traditions in the early United States? What was its long-standing effect? Professor Lindsey Chervinsky explains all! Episode #395. --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Lindsay M. Chervinsky, The Cabinet: George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution The US Constitution never established a presidential cabinet―the delegates to the Constitutional Convention explicitly rejected the idea. So how did George Washington create one of the most powerful bodies in the federal government? On November 26, 1791, George Washington convened his department secretaries―Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, Henry Knox, and Edmund Randolph―for the first cabinet meeting. Why did he wait two and a half years into [...]

Gustav Stresmann – Man Crush Monday!

Professor Philip Nash explains his man-crush on Gustav Stresemann, the important German politician during the Weimar period. What do Stresemann's career and his hopes for Germany tell us about the strengths that can be found in nationalism? And we engage in some "what if Stresemann had lived" speculation. Would we have seen the rise of Hitler? Episode #394 --- Buzzkill Bookshelf Jonathan Wright, Gustav Stresemann: Weimar's Greatest Statesman Gustav Stresemann was the exceptional political figure of his time. His early death in 1929 has long been viewed as the beginning of the end for the Weimar Republic and the opening through which Hitler was able to come to power. His career was marked by many contradictions but also a pervading loyalty to the values of [...]

Rallies for “More History” at the Gettysburg Battlefield

Professor Scott Hancock from Gettysburg College joins us to explain the development of efforts to contextualize and historicize the Confederate Monuments at the Gettysburg National Military Park. The summer of 2020 saw a great deal of tension and confrontation during these presentations. Dr. Hancock explains how this helped the "We Want More History" movement. One of our best shows ever! Episode #393 Watch this space for more info about how to get #WeWantMoreHistory t-shirts and other merch! Coming Soon! Links mentioned in the episode: You Tube: New York Times:​ for “Gettysburg Confederate Monuments to get new panels to offer more historical context.” Interview with Newsy: Panel discussion live-streamed with on Confederate monuments at Gettysburg National Military Park: [...]

Forward and in High Heels: from Ginger Rogers to Ann Richards to Kamala Harris

It’s certainly been an exciting November here at the Buzzkill Institute and, more importantly, of course, here in the United States. Buzzkill employees have been working around the clock, trying to keep up with the pace of news and to produce shows that are relevant to current events. And, Americans as a whole have seen a dramatic and tense presidential election night, an uneasy and fraught few days while the ballot counts went on and on in various American states, and, most important of all, have tried to continue our lives with the spectre of a worsening COVID crisis scaring us to death. Last week, we had an interview with the excellent journalism historian, Dr. Teri Finneman, where she analyzed press portrayals of female politicians [...]

Georgian Texel Uprising and Hitler’s Revenge, April-May 1945

In the final days of World War II in Europe, Georgians serving in the Wehrmacht on Texel island off the Dutch coast rose up and slaughtered their German masters. Hitler ordered the island to be retaken and fighting continued for weeks, well after the war's end. The uprising had its origins in the bloody history of Georgia in the twentieth century, a history that saw the country move from German occupation, to three short years of independence, to Soviet rule after it was conquered by the Red Army in 1921. A bloody rebellion against the Soviets took place in 1924, but it remained under Russian Soviet rule. Thousands of Georgians served in the Soviet forces during World War II and among those who were captured, [...]


American History, British History, and World History Myths Busted by Professor Buzzkill
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