179 episodes

An hour of historical reporting told by the people who were there.

The History Hour BBC

    • History

An hour of historical reporting told by the people who were there.

    Saving Antarctica

    Saving Antarctica

    In October 1991, an international protocol to protect the world’s last wilderness, Antarctica, from commercial exploitation was agreed at a summit in Madrid. Louise Hidalgo talks to one of the environmentalists who led a successful campaign to protect the ice continent. Also, how meditation changes the brain, the Iraqi "supergun affair", and political art in Nigeria.

    Picture: Blue icebergs in Antarctica (Credit: Getty Images)

    • 50 min
    The publication of Harry Potter

    The publication of Harry Potter

    A look back at some of the most influential books of modern times, including an interview with the publisher who first spotted Harry Potter's potential. Plus, Chairman Mao's Little Red Book, Erica Jong's Fear of Flying, Brazilian bestseller Diary of a Favela, and dating handbook The Rules.

    Picture: JK Rowling signs copies of the final Harry Potter book "Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows" at the Natural History Museum in London, 2007. (Justin Goff\UK Press via Getty Images)

    • 49 min
    London's first black policeman

    London's first black policeman

    The prejudice faced by London's first black policeman, how a new sign language emerged in 1980s Nicaragua, the Native American casino boom, plus the release of Nelson Mandela and China's much maligned 19th-century dowager empress.

    Photo: London's first black policeman PC Norwell Roberts beginning his training with colleagues at Hendon Police College, London, 5th April 1967. (Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

    • 50 min
    The early days of the European Union

    The early days of the European Union

    The hurried signing of the Treaty of Rome in 1957 which led to greater European unity, plus 1992 - when the British royal family started to reform its role after a year of scandal and disaster. Also on the programme, the horrific gang rape which prompted India to rethink its laws, the storm that helped British tree experts make an important scientific discovery and the woman born to slaves who became the first self-made female millionaire.

    Photo: European leaders at the Palazzo dei Conservatori in Rome. Credit: Keystone/Getty Images

    • 50 min
    The mystery of the disappearing frogs

    The mystery of the disappearing frogs

    This week we're looking at extinction. The deadly fungus that's killing amphibians, the story of the Dodo, plus why discovering that whales 'sing' helped to save them. Also, the book that changed attitudes to the environment and the 'Frozen Zoo' that aims to preserve endangered DNA for future generations.

    (Photo: dead frog infected with Chytrid Fungus. Credit: Forrest Brem)

    • 50 min
    Storming the Stasi HQ

    Storming the Stasi HQ

    The fall of East Germany's secret police; racism, injustice and a child execution in the US, plus the killing of Osama Bin Laden; the woman who negotiated peace in the Philippines, and the man who saved British aristocrats' country houses.

    Photo Photo:East Germans streaming into the secret police headquarters in Berlin on the night of January 15th 1990. Credit: Zöllner/ullstein bild/Getty Images.

    • 50 min

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