109 episodes

How can the past help inform today’s most pressing challenges? Every Tuesday, award-winning historians Heather Cox Richardson and Joanne Freeman use their encyclopedic knowledge of US history to bring the past to life. Together, they make sense of the week in news by discussing the people, ideas, and events that got us here today. Now and Then is produced by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

Now & Then CAFE Studios

    • History
    • 4.8 • 2.8K Ratings

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How can the past help inform today’s most pressing challenges? Every Tuesday, award-winning historians Heather Cox Richardson and Joanne Freeman use their encyclopedic knowledge of US history to bring the past to life. Together, they make sense of the week in news by discussing the people, ideas, and events that got us here today. Now and Then is produced by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network.

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

    Processing Roe’s Reversal in Real Time

    Processing Roe’s Reversal in Real Time

    Heather and Joanne react to the overturning of Roe v. Wade. How did we get here? What does the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs signal for the future of women’s reproductive rights and broader civil rights in America? What kind of unique perspective do women historians bring to understanding this moment?
    Join CAFE Insider to listen to “Backstage,” where Heather and Joanne chat each week about the anecdotes and ideas that formed the episode. Head to: cafe.com/history
    For more historical analysis of current events, sign up for the free weekly CAFE Brief newsletter, featuring Time Machine, a weekly article that dives into an historical event inspired by each episode of Now & Then: cafe.com/brief
    Executive Producer: Tamara Sepper; Editorial Producer: David Kurlander; Audio Producer: Matthew Billy; Theme Music: Nat Weiner; CAFE Team: Adam Waller, David Tatasciore, Sam Ozer-Staton, Noa Azulai, and Jake Kaplan. Now & Then is presented by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network.
    REFERENCES & SUPPLEMENTAL MATERIALS
    “Now & Then: Abortion: Whose Choice?” CAFE.com, 9/14/2021
     

    “The Dobbs v. Jackson Decision, Annotated,” New York Times, 6/24/2022

    Justice Benjamin Robert Curtis, “Dissenting Opinion, Dred Scott v. Sanford,” Rutgers, 1857

    Amy Howe, “In 6-3 ruling, court strikes down New York’s concealed-carry law,” SCOTUSBlog, 6/23/2022

    “Anson Burlingame,” HarpWeek, 1998

    Frida Ghitis, “Opinion: These two women reminded America why Tr… must be prosecuted,” CNN, 6/23/2022


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    • 37 min
    Encore: Investigating Democracy

    Encore: Investigating Democracy

    On this encore episode of Now & Then, originally aired in June 2021 amid a Republican filibuster of an independent commission investigating January 6th, Heather and Joanne discuss the history of congressional commissions, from the investigation of the 1856 caning of Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner, to the 1871 Ku Klux Klan hearings, to 1954 back-and-forth between Senator Joseph McCarthy and the Army. 

    We’ll be back with a new episode next Tuesday! 

    Join CAFE Insider to listen to “Backstage,” where Heather and Joanne chat each week about the anecdotes and ideas that formed the episode. Head to: cafe.com/history

    For more historical analysis of current events, sign up for the free weekly CAFE Brief newsletter, featuring Time Machine, a weekly article that dives into an historical event inspired by each episode of Now & Then: cafe.com/brief

    For references & supplemental materials, head to: cafe.com/now-and-then/encore-investigating-democracy

    Now & Then is presented by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network. 
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 47 min
    Nostalgia & Political Power

    Nostalgia & Political Power

    What are the political purposes of nostalgia? Why does the GOP idealize the American past? And what can this backward-looking perspective give or take away from our collective future?

    On Now & Then, Heather and Joanne discuss the role of nostalgia in American political history, from Puritan Jeremiads, to the 1913 Gettysburg and Fort Wagner reunions, to the emergence in the 1970s of a cultural obsession with the 1950s. 

    Join CAFE Insider to listen to “Backstage,” where Heather and Joanne chat each week about the anecdotes and ideas that formed the episode. Head to: cafe.com/history

    For more historical analysis of current events, sign up for the free weekly CAFE Brief newsletter, featuring Time Machine, a weekly article that dives into an historical event inspired by each episode of Now & Then: cafe.com/brief

    For references & supplemental materials, head to: cafe.com/now-and-then/nostalgia-political-power

    Now & Then is presented by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network. 
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 52 min
    Now & Then: Backstage 6/14

    Now & Then: Backstage 6/14

    “Backstage” is a special segment of Now & Then exclusively for members of CAFE Insider. In this installment, Heather and Joanne discuss the pull of nostalgia in their own lives.

    Thank you for being a member of the CAFE Insider community.

    For more analysis of politics and history, sign up for the free weekly CAFE Brief newsletter: cafe.com/brief

    The Mirage of Money (or, NFTs, WTF?)

    The Mirage of Money (or, NFTs, WTF?)

    Why have NFTs captured the American imagination? What can the recent instability in the NFT market tell us about the history of speculative bubbles? 

    Heather and Joanne put the NFT craze in context with other American financial booms & busts, from the Panic of 1792, to the 1890s Yukon Gold Rush, to the late 1990s dot-com bubble. 

    Join CAFE Insider to listen to “Backstage,” where Heather and Joanne chat each week about the anecdotes and ideas that formed the episode. Head to: cafe.com/history

    For more historical analysis of current events, sign up for the free weekly CAFE Brief newsletter, featuring Time Machine, a weekly article that dives into an historical event inspired by each episode of Now & Then: cafe.com/brief

    For references & supplemental materials, head to: cafe.com/now-and-then/the-mirage-of-money-or-nfts-wtf

    Now & Then is presented by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network. 
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices

    • 49 min
    Now & Then: Backstage 6/7

    Now & Then: Backstage 6/7

    “Backstage” is a special segment of Now & Then exclusively for members of CAFE Insider. In this installment, Heather and Joanne discuss their perspectives on investing in the stock market.

    Thank you for being a member of the CAFE Insider community.

    For more analysis of politics and history, sign up for the free weekly CAFE Brief newsletter: cafe.com/brief

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
2.8K Ratings

2.8K Ratings

i eat boards for breakfast ,

Exquisite pairing of historians

So happy to hear my favorite thinkers are working together on Now and Then. Joanne, missing your participation on BackStory. HCR, I read you every day! Thank you for your work.

lostinthoight ,

Amazing

These 2 brilliant historians help put perspective and context in very challenging times. Love their insights!

JezSR ,

Now & Then

Excellent episode on processing Roe in Real Time. Informative and powerful. Anyone who loves our democracy, and who is even a little bit interested in history, should listen.

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