73 episodes

"Axelbank Reports History and Today: Conversations with America’s top non-fiction authors and why their books matter right now" approaches our past and present in a way that makes anyone want to listen. National-award winning TV news reporter Evan Axelbank interviews writers of history and current events to explore how America works and how it has been shaped by both the powerful and the powerless. In conversational and engaging fashion, listeners learn about the most important events, themes and figures in American history. This podcast shows why we have no choice but to understand where we have been, to know where we are going.

Axelbank Reports History and Today Evan Axelbank

    • History
    • 5.0 • 25 Ratings

"Axelbank Reports History and Today: Conversations with America’s top non-fiction authors and why their books matter right now" approaches our past and present in a way that makes anyone want to listen. National-award winning TV news reporter Evan Axelbank interviews writers of history and current events to explore how America works and how it has been shaped by both the powerful and the powerless. In conversational and engaging fashion, listeners learn about the most important events, themes and figures in American history. This podcast shows why we have no choice but to understand where we have been, to know where we are going.

    #72: Michael Holzman - "Spies and Traitors"

    #72: Michael Holzman - "Spies and Traitors"

    Who hasn't seen a spy movie that features a double agent who played their role so perfectly, even his best friends didn't know who he was working for? This is the real life story of how an MI6 agent played the role to a T.

    Kim Philby was an MI6 agent during World War II, who took a young American, Jim Angleton, under his wing. Their friendship may have been real, but Philby's life was a sham. 

    Michael Holzman's book, "Spies and Traitors: Kim Philby, James Angleton and the Friendship and Betrayal That Would Shape MI6, the CIA and the Cold War," explains how Philby snookered the world's most storied intelligence services.  and passed secrets to the Russians that endangered the colleagues he had worked with for so long. Angleton's own friend 

    Michael Holzman's page at Pegasus Books can be found at http://pegasusbooks.com/books/spies-and-traitors-9781643138077-hardcover

    Support our show at patreon.com/axelbankhistory

    **A portion of every contribution is given to a charity for children's literacy**

    "Axelbank Reports History and Today" can be found on social media at 

    twitter.com/axelbankhistory

    instagram.com/axelbankhistory

    facebook.com/axelbankhistory

    • 45 min
    #71: Leah Price - "What We Talk About When We Talk About Books"

    #71: Leah Price - "What We Talk About When We Talk About Books"

    When we pick up a book, what exactly are we holding? Is it a living document or etched in stone? How closely do the words on the page mirror what is in the author's head? Why have they lasted so long, and how much longer WILL they last? Dr. Leah Price is a book historian and on this episode, she answers those questions, and wrestles with whether an audiobook or a digital file can be considered a book. Where did books come from, and why have they always been so satisfying to talk about? Dr. Price argues they are very much alive, and explains why the predictions that books are near death - predictions that started eons ago - have always been wrong.

    Dr. Price is on social media at twitter.com/leahatwhatprice

    Her website is leahprice.org

    Support our show at patreon.com/axelbankhistory

    **A portion of every contribution is given to a charity for children's literacy**

    "Axelbank Reports History and Today" can be found on social media at 

    twitter.com/axelbankhistory

    instagram.com/axelbankhistory

    facebook.com/axelbankhistory

    • 50 min
    #70: Peter Coleman - "The Way Out"

    #70: Peter Coleman - "The Way Out"

    Are you excited for big holiday gatherings where lots of politics are being discussed? No? Well Dr. Peter Coleman of Columbia University has just the solution for ending our polarized political culture, both at home and in the real world. His book, "The Way Out: How to Overcome Toxic Polarization," offers numerous ways to approach our daily lives, the news, social media and our relationships to tone down the emotion and boost the parts of our brain that foster logical thinking. He also explains why we stick with the sides we like, and are seldom able to see another perspective. Ironically, he says the moment we are in, where accusations are flying that one group or another is leading America to the brink, offers hope that change is upon us.

    ***We are taking a few weeks off for the holidays. Our next episode will go live Jan 4th. Please have a wonderful and safe new year. I am forever grateful to every single listener. See you in a few weeks.***

    Dr. Coleman is on social media at twitter.com/petertcoleman1

    His website is thewayoutofpolarization.com

    Support our show at patreon.com/axelbankhistory

    **A portion of every contribution is given to a charity for children's literacy**

    "Axelbank Reports History and Today" can be found on social media at 

    twitter.com/axelbankhistory

    instagram.com/axelbankhistory

    facebook.com/axelbankhistory

    • 50 min
    #69: Peter Bergen - "The Rise and Fall of Osama bin Laden"

    #69: Peter Bergen - "The Rise and Fall of Osama bin Laden"

    Twenty years after the worst terrorist attacks in US history, we speak with Peter Bergen, one of the foremost authorities on the threat the United States faces from fundamentalists. Bergen is a journalist for CNN who has interviewed Osama bin Laden and has now written a biography that catalogues "The Rise and Fall" of the terrorist who spearheaded the 9/11 attacks. Bergen argues that bin Laden's turn to terrorism was not pre-ordained, and that key events like the death of his father and the opportunity to wage war against the Soviets drove the rigorous practitioner of Islam to adopt violence in hopes of influencing the United States to give up its presence in Saudi Arabia and the Holy Land. Bergen describes what it was like to interview bin Laden in Afghanistan in 1997 and to tour bin Laden's compound in Pakistan after he finally faced punishment for the deaths of thousands of people across the world.

    Bergen's website can be found at peterbergen.com

    He is on social media at www.twitter.com/peterbergencnn

    His book was published by Simon and Schuster and can be found here at https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-Rise-and-Fall-of-Osama-bin-Laden/Peter-L-Bergen/9781982170523

    Support our show at patreon.com/axelbankhistory

    **A portion of every contribution is given to a charity for children's literacy**

    "Axelbank Reports History and Today" can be found on social media at 

    twitter.com/axelbankhistory

    instagram.com/axelbankhistory

    facebook.com/axelbankhistory

    • 58 min
    #68: Amy Argetsinger - "There She Was"

    #68: Amy Argetsinger - "There She Was"

    A bunch of women line up wearing next-to-nothing in hopes of impressing a batch of strangers who are grading them on everything from the way they look to the way they think. The woman with the highest score gets to be called, "Miss America," and wears a crown - and the title - for the rest of her life. The history behind that process, and how it became a cultural icon is as fascinating as it is filled with twists and turns. In this episode, Amy Argetsinger from the Washington Post drops by to chat about her new book, "There She Was: The Secret History of Miss America." She explains how the women who get to be called, "Miss America" are the ones who saved the pageant from ruin as it endured America's various awakenings, including, racial, feminism and the, "Me Too," movement. To understand "Miss America" is to understand America.

    Amy Argetsinger is on social media at twitter.com/amyargetsinger

    Her website is amyargetsinger.com

    Her Washington Post page is at https://www.washingtonpost.com/people/amy-argetsinger/

    The book is available from Simon and Schuster at https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/There-She-Was/Amy-Argetsinger/9781982123390

    Support our show at patreon.com/axelbankhistory

    **A portion of every contribution is given to a charity for children's literacy**

    "Axelbank Reports History and Today" can be found on social media at 

    twitter.com/axelbankhistory

    instagram.com/axelbankhistory

    facebook.com/axelbankhistory

    • 50 min
    #67: Patrick Lacroix - "JFK and the Politics of Faith"

    #67: Patrick Lacroix - "JFK and the Politics of Faith"

    Will an American president take orders from the Pope? As the devoutly catholic Joe Biden ran for president, he faced no such question. But sixty years before, when John F. Kennedy was running, it was not only a question, but a controversy. Listen to our episode with historian of religion in America, Dr. Patrick Lacroix, as he explains how JFK not only grappled with how to handle the question, but how his presidency helped quell those questions once and for all, at least for catholics. He also explains JFK's religious influences and gauges whether his lifestyle matched with religious teachings. JFK's presidency is incomplete in many ways, and Dr. Lacroix argues, the study of it has been as well. He explains why so many historians missed the impact JFK had on American life when viewed through the transformation of catholicism during his brief tenure in office.

    Dr. Patrick Lacroix is on social media at twitter.com/querythepast

    His website is querythepast.com

    Support our show at patreon.com/axelbankhistory

    **A portion of every contribution is given to a charity for children's literacy**

    "Axelbank Reports History and Today" can be found on social media at 

    twitter.com/axelbankhistory

    instagram.com/axelbankhistory

    facebook.com/axelbankhistory

    • 1 hr 2 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
25 Ratings

25 Ratings

MBB1207 ,

History

Love this historical podcast on the past, keep up the great work. America needs to understand its own history, far to often we fail to understand our own history. Way to go!

lindardn ,

A sad story...

The 1940s actress Gene Tierney had a very high squeaky voice when she started in movies. She was compelled by the movie studio to smoke cigarettes in an effort to lower her voice. She later died ofEmphysema.

GAX ,

Interesting and fun as well.

I enjoyed listening to this. There was a feeling like two friends where having a discussion. I’m looking forward to future installments.

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