60 episodes

A podcast where two social studies teachers discuss history, American empire, US politics and their own lives. Traditional narratives regarding American history are challenged in a tone that ranges from playful to hostile.

In the Context of Empire Jonathan Lancaster and Matthew McKenna

    • History
    • 5.0 • 17 Ratings

A podcast where two social studies teachers discuss history, American empire, US politics and their own lives. Traditional narratives regarding American history are challenged in a tone that ranges from playful to hostile.

    Episode 61: The New York Times Advertises for Mercenaries!

    Episode 61: The New York Times Advertises for Mercenaries!

    Matt and Matt discuss a recent New York Times article, An American in Ukraine Finds the War He’s Been Searching For.. This article is every bit as terrible as the title indicates!



    Our Work:

    Read our "In the Context of Empire" blog with corresponding and expanded posts on this content!

    Find some of Matt M's writing at CovertAction Magazine

    Social Media: Twitter- @JonTheContrary, @MatthewConnors3 and @mattylongruns

    • 47 min
    Episode 59: NPR Distorts History and Obfuscates US Role in the Current Crisis in Afghanistan with Bryce Greene

    Episode 59: NPR Distorts History and Obfuscates US Role in the Current Crisis in Afghanistan with Bryce Greene

    We were privileged to be  joined by Bryce Greene to discuss the current U.S made crisis in Afghanistan and complicity of U.S media in prolonging the suffering of the Afghan people. Bryce is contributor to the media watchdog Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. His two recent articles titled NPR Distorts History of US Invasion of Afghanistan and NPR Devotes Almost Two Hours to Afghanistan Over Two Weeks—and 30 Seconds to US Starving Afghans are discussed in this episode.

    Discussed in this Episode:

    - Bryce's interest in media criticism specifically with regards to foreign policy

    - NPR's distortion of the beginnings of the US role in Afghanistan

    - NPR's obfuscation of the fact that the US is starving Afghans

    - The importance of criticizing liberal networks like NPR

    - Why it is so harmful for networks like NPR to distort the nefarious role played by the US in Afghanistan and many other nations victimized by the US empire. 

    Our Work:

    Read our "In the Context of Empire" blog with corresponding and expanded posts on this content!

    Find some of Matt M's writing at CovertAction Magazine

    Social Media: Twitter- @JonTheContrary  

    • 1 hr 11 min
    Episode 58: Public School Teachers Play Geopolitics!

    Episode 58: Public School Teachers Play Geopolitics!

    Jon, and the Matts (Connors and McKenna) discuss current events in Ukraine and lend some of their unsolicited commentary on the crisis. 



    Discussed in this Episode:

    Jon’s trip to Vietnam - How’s it going? Updates?

    - Matt Connor's journey as an educator, left wing thinker, and anti-imperialist

    - Russia - Ukraine

    - US media coverage of the crisis

    - Worthy vs unworthy victims

    - “Russian disinformation” IE explaining relevant context

    - "Conspiratorial thinking" vs very obvious geopolitical and material goals in US foreign policy



    Our Work:

    Read our "In the Context of Empire" blog with corresponding and expanded posts on this content!

    Find some of Matt's writing at CovertAction Magazine

    Social Media: Twitter- @JonTheContrary and @Mattylongruns

    Music produced by Zac McKenna- @mcktasty

    • 1 hr 7 min
    Episode 57: Russia-Ukraine Conflict and US Media Malfeasance with Bryce Greene

    Episode 57: Russia-Ukraine Conflict and US Media Malfeasance with Bryce Greene

    Matt was joined by Bryce Greene to discuss the Russia- Ukraine crisis. Bryce Greene is a contributor to Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. Some of his recent articles include What You Should Really Know About Ukraine and Vox Omits US Military Role in African Instability. More of his work can be found at FAIR. 

    *NOTE: This episode was recorded on 2/22/22, the day before the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The historical context and media critiques nonetheless remain relevant to the current crisis.*



    Discussed in this Episode:

    - Bryce's background and interest in media criticism through the lens of anti-imperialism

    - Patterns in US media's coverage of US foreign policy

    - US media misreporting Ukraine crisis- NATO expansion, 2014 Maidan Coup, Russian annexation of Crimea, civil war in the Donbas

    - Outlooks for the future

    Our Work:

    Read our "In the Context of Empire" blog with corresponding and expanded posts to this content!

    Find some of Matt's writing at CovertAction Magazine

    Social Media: Twitter- @JonTheContrary and  @Mattylongruns

    Music produced by Zac McKenna- @mcktasty

    • 1 hr 16 min
    Episode 56: Jonny goes to Vietnam!

    Episode 56: Jonny goes to Vietnam!

    The band is back together! Jon rejoined the podcast to talk about his trip to Vietnam, what he hopes to accomplish and its implications for anti imperialist education in US. Matt also does his best at an explainer for the situation in Ukraine. 

    Our Work:

    Read our "In the Context of Empire" blog with corresponding and expanded posts to this content!

    Find some of Matt's writing at CovertAction Magazine

    Social Media: Twitter- @JonTheContrary and  @Mattylongruns

    Music produced by Zac McKenna- @mcktasty

    • 48 min
    Episode 55: An Endorsement of Whataboutism, Tankies and Moral Equivalence with Justin Podur

    Episode 55: An Endorsement of Whataboutism, Tankies and Moral Equivalence with Justin Podur

    Matt was joined by Justin Podur to discuss the terms "whataboutism," "tankies" and "moral equivalence" as useful tools for anti imperialists, despite imperialist attempts to dismiss them. Justin is the  founder of the Anti Empire Project and Anti Empire project Podcast. He is the author of America’s Wars on Democracy in Rwanda and the DR Congo and The Path of the Unarmed. He is the co-author of Extraordinary Threat: The U.S. Empire, the Media, and Twenty Years of Coup Attempts in Venezuela Justin is also an Associate Professor at York University's Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change.



    Discussed in this Episode:

    - The origins of "whataboutism," how it has been used, and why imperialists are so quick to dismiss it as a tactics

    - The racist origins of imperialists dismissing calls for racial equality as "whataboutism" throughout the the Cold War

    - A discussion about how literally EVERY BEHAVIOR the United States accuses other nations of are behaviors that US either engages in itself, or supports governments that do so. 

    - The value of "whatboutism" as a tool in argument

    - The charge of being a "tankie" or engaging in moral equivalence

    - Is calling out hypocrisy useful? There are endless examples, but do the imperialists actually care if they are behaving in obviously hypocritical ways?

    Our Work:

    Read our "In the Context of Empire" blog with corresponding and expanded posts to this content!

    Find some of Matt's writing at CovertAction Magazine

    Social Media: Twitter- @JonTheContrary and  @Mattylongruns

    Music produced by Zac McKenna- @mcktasty

    • 1 hr 15 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
17 Ratings

17 Ratings

kame-sennin ,

Solidly anti-imperialist

Much needed anti imperialist analysis.

Pennypie123 ,

One of the best podcasts I listen to

Deep dives into topics no one else is even covering, thoughtful discussion of how to make change! Love this show, Wish I had discovered it sooner!

Not Batman Bruce Wayne ,

Wide Ranging Critical Conversations on American History

Two progressive educators work through, in real time, the question of how to learn from American history to effect social change. At a time when the radical teaching of history is under direct assault, this series provides an informative and provocative take on the enduring American mythologies that have shaped our nation’s sense of itself. They feature an excellent list of guests who share stories from their writing and political activism. Reviews of local beer are an extra.

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