49 episodes

What are the real stories behind the most misunderstood and abused ideas in politics? From Conspiracy Theory to Woke to Centrism and beyond, Ian Dunt and Dorian Lynskey dig into the astonishing secret histories of concepts you thought you knew.
Want to support us in making future seasons? There are now two ways you can help out:


Patreon - https://www.patreon.com/originstorypod . Get early episodes, live zooms and more from just £5 per month.


Apple Podcasts - https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/origin-story/id1624704966 . Want everything in one place with easy payment? Subscribe to our premium feed on Apple Podcasts for ad-free shows early and more.


From Podmasters, the makers of Oh God, What Now? and The Bunker.

Origin Story Origin Story

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 51 Ratings

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

What are the real stories behind the most misunderstood and abused ideas in politics? From Conspiracy Theory to Woke to Centrism and beyond, Ian Dunt and Dorian Lynskey dig into the astonishing secret histories of concepts you thought you knew.
Want to support us in making future seasons? There are now two ways you can help out:


Patreon - https://www.patreon.com/originstorypod . Get early episodes, live zooms and more from just £5 per month.


Apple Podcasts - https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/origin-story/id1624704966 . Want everything in one place with easy payment? Subscribe to our premium feed on Apple Podcasts for ad-free shows early and more.


From Podmasters, the makers of Oh God, What Now? and The Bunker.

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

    Subscriber extra: The Illuminati – Top of the Plots

    Subscriber extra: The Illuminati – Top of the Plots

    Exclusive to our backers… The Illuminati were a group of Enlightenment idealists who existed for just a few years in 1780s Bavaria. Or were they? The Illuminati have since been blamed for everything from the French Revolution to communism to 9/11. How did a powerless club of intellectuals become reimagined as the secret rulers of the world? And how did the myth of the Illuminati become the template for every megaconspiracy theory about plots to put humanity under the heel of a one-world government?

    Dorian and Ian unravel this amazing yarn, which takes in America’s Founding Fathers, British fascists, the Knights Templar, David Icke, Jay-Z and the Playboy letters page. The truth is in here.

    Written and presented by Ian Dunt and Dorian Lynskey. Audio production by Simon Williams. Music by Jade Bailey. Logo art by Mischa Welsh. Group Editor: Andrew Harrison. Origin Story is a Podmasters production

    Subscriber extra: Fascism – Dangerous Illusions

    Subscriber extra: Fascism – Dangerous Illusions

    Everything you know about fascism is wrong! Well, not all of it… but quite a lot, including social media favourites like “Hitler didn’t announce his program until he was in power” and “Liberals let the Nazis in”. In this exclusive for supporters, Ian and Dorian dive back into their growing pile of research into Hitler, Mussolini, Europe in the 1930s and beyond to expose some key myths about the politics of nationalism and violence… and show how modern-day opportunists from across the political spectrum choose to represent it for their own ends.
    • “[The Nazis] are not people who were covered in subterfuge and euphemism and subtle political tactics. They made it clear who they were from the very beginning.” – Ian Dunt
    • “The Marxist orthodox take is ‘Oh, the Fascists are just the heavy mob of Capitalism’… But there is nothing Neoliberal about Mussolini or Hitler.” – Dorian Lynskey
    • “If you’re going to delve through history to make attacks now, and you’re a Communist, then I’d suggest that the era of the Nazi-Soviet Pact is not the place to start.” – Ian Dunt
    Written and presented by Dorian Lynskey and Ian Dunt. Audio production and music by Jade Bailey. Logo art by Mischa Welsh. Group Editor: Andrew Harrison. Origin Story is a Podmasters production

    Subscriber exclusive: Stop the War – it’s all about the West and the Rest

    Subscriber exclusive: Stop the War – it’s all about the West and the Rest

    Originally released March 2023: Energised by the Iraq War and driven by a far-left core, the Stop The War movement exercised massive influence and its Chair Jeremy Corbyn even became Labour leader. How did it get to be so powerful? Why did it go from a broad mainstream protest to the biggest pulpit Trotskyists and Stalinists have ever had in the UK? And has its stance on Ukraine destroyed it? Dorian and Ian take a look at the rise and decay of a movement that led Britain’s biggest-ever day of protest, which still influences our foreign policy today. [Originally released on Patreon, up on Apple Podcasts by popular request]
    • “What we’re dealing with here isn’t really pacifism… It’s not stop war, it’s stop a particular war, a war which changes all the time.” – Dorian
    • “If you’re not in the Western colonialist camp, say you’re Putin or Assad, then the attitude is soft or gently critical or completely oblivious.” – Ian
    • “It’s like the flipside of Neoconservatism: ‘Only what America does matters in the world’.” – Dorian
    • “This is the moral collapse that comes when you adopt the simple principle that my enemy’s enemy is my friend.” – Dorian
    Written and presented by Dorian Lynskey and Ian Dunt. Audio production and music by Jade Bailey. Logo art by Mischa Welsh. Group Editor: Andrew Harrison. Origin Story is a Podmasters production

    Patreon bonus! 📳 Between-season Q&A with Ian and Dorian

    Patreon bonus! 📳 Between-season Q&A with Ian and Dorian

    You sent far, far too many questions for our last Zoom video… so here are even more of them in the portable, fuss-free audio format! We’ll be doing more Patreon-exclusive mini-casts to tide you over between seasons, so keep an eye on your app. This time: Where do the topics for Origin Story come from? Would Ian and Dorian ever have guests on the show? Would either of them ever write fiction? From the ease with which experts in one field can fall into conspiracy theory in another… to how bad Ian is at sport… to show classics like eugenics, Suella Braverman, Jordan Peterson and the Cold War – all your favourites! – it’s the perfect inter-season re-up.

    • “The thing with Jordan Peterson is, apparently he’s an expert on whatever he decides to be an expert in. But he’s not a professor at everything.” – Dorian
    • “I can tell when my traditional audience doesn’t agree with me, on things like smoking or vaping. To the Right they’re Nanny State issues; to me they’re individual liberty issues.” – Ian

    Presented by Dorian Lynskey and Ian Dunt. Audio by Jade Bailey. Produced by Anne-Marie Luff. Origin Story is a Podmasters production.

    Effective Altruism: Morality by numbers

    Effective Altruism: Morality by numbers

    In the last episode of season four, Ian Dunt and Dorian Lynskey discuss effective altruism. Last month the US entrepreneur Sam Bankman-Fried was convicted on multiple counts of fraud and conspiracy related to the dramatic collapse of his cryptocurrency exchange FTX. Bankman-Fried was also a prominent advocate of effective altruism, a philanthropic movement based on utilitarian philosophy, and the scandal has thrown the EA community into crisis.
    Dorian and Ian explain how two maverick young Oxford philosophers ended up creating a multi-billion-dollar movement, explore the ideas behind it, and track its journey towards long termism: the philosophy of safeguarding the future of the human race from threats such as hostile AI. Are the principles of EA sound? Did the influx of billionaires and the obsession with existential risk knock it off course? Was Bankman-Fried a true believer who blew it or just a grifter who took the idealists for a ride? And can EA survive one of the biggest financial scandals of this century? When big ideas collide with big money and big tech, things get messy.
    Support Origin Story on Patreon for exclusive benefits www.Patreon.com/originstorypod 
    Reading list
    Books:
    Carol J.Adams, Alice Crary, Lori Gruen, (eds.) — The Good it Promises, the Harm it Does: Critical Essays on Effective Alturism, (2023)
    Nick Bostrom and Milan M. Ćirković (eds.) — Global Catastrophic Risks
    (2008)
    Nick Bostrom — Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies (2014)
    Zeke Faux — Number Go Up: Inside Crypto’s Wild Rise and Staggering
    Fall (2023)
    John Leslie — The End of the World: The Science and Ethics of Human
    Extinction (1996)
    Michael Lewis — Going Infinite: The Rise and Fall of a New Tycoon (2023)
    William MacAskill — Doing Good Better: Effective Altruism and How You
    Can Make a Difference (2015)
    William MacAskill — What We Owe the Future (2022)
    Toby Ord — The Precipice: Existential Risk and the Future of Humanity
    (2020)
    Online:
    Core EA Principles, Centre for Effective Altruism
    Peter Singer — Famine, Affluence and Morality, 1971
    Peter Singer — TED talk, 2013
    William MacAskill — The history of the term ‘effective altruism’, Effective
    Altruism Forum, 2014
    Raffi Khatchadourian — The Doomsday Invention, New Yorker, 2015
    Gideon-Lewis Krauss — The Reluctant Prophet of Effective Altruism, New
    Yorker, 2022
    Charlotte Alter — Effective Altruist Leaders Were Repeatedly Warned
    About Sam Bankman-Fried Years Before FTX Collapsed, Time, 2023
    Sophie McBain — Sam Bankman-Fried and the effective altruism delusion,
    New Statesman, 2023
    Podcasts:
    80,000 Hours: Sam Bankman-Fried, 2022
    80,000 Hours: Toby Ord, 2023
    Written and presented by Dorian Lynskey and Ian Dunt. Audio production by Simon Williams. Music by Jade Bailey. Logo art by Mischa Welsh. Lead Producer is Anne-Marie Luff. Group Editor: Andrew Harrison. Origin Story is a Podmasters production.
    Twitter
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    • 1 hr 10 min
    Eugenics Part Two: The Murderous Science

    Eugenics Part Two: The Murderous Science

    In part two of the history of eugenics, Ian Dunt and Dorian Lynskey explain how the pseudo-science of “racial hygiene” seduced everyone from feminist birth-control pioneers and social democrats to the ardent white supremacists whose screeds shaped US immigration laws and influenced Hitler. Then they turn to the rise of eugenics in Germany and how it enabled the Nazis to introduce massive programs of sterilisation and extermination.
    After the Second World War, the name of eugenics was discredited but many of its leading thinkers and institutions kept going under the more acceptable guise of genetics. How was eugenics quietly rehabilitated by IQ fetishists and population-control advocates? Why has it become so popular in Silicon Valley? And does it even make scientific sense or is it really a pseudo-science designed to formalise bigotry? Despite its association with historic atrocities, the belief that biology is destiny and procreation is political has not gone away.
    Support Origin Story on Patreon for exclusive benefits including an extended version of the podcast. www.Patreon.com/originstorypod 
    Reading list:
    Alison Bashford and Philippa Levine (eds) - The Oxford Handbook of the History of Eugenics (2010)
    Edwin Black — War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America’s Campaign to Create a Master Race (2003)
    Elof Axel Carlson — The Unfit: A History of a Bad Idea (2001)
    GK Chesterton — Eugenics and Other Evils (1922)
    Charles Darwin — The Descent of Man (1871)
    Lyndsay Andrew Farrall — The Origins and Growth of the English Eugenics Movement 1865-1925 (1969)
    Francis Galton – Hereditary Genius (1869)
    Henry H Goddard – The Kallikak Family (1912)
    Stephen Jay Gould — The Mismeasure of Man (1981/1996)
    Madison Grant – The Passing of the Great Race (1916)
    Philippa Levine — Eugenics: A Very Short Introduction (2017)
    Gina Maranto — Quest for Perfection: The Drive to Breed Better Human Beings (1996)
    Adam Rutherford — Control: The Dark History and Troubling Present of Eugenics (2022)
    Lothrop Stoddard – The Rising Tide of Color Against White World Supremacy (1920)
    HG Wells – Anticipations of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress upon Human Life and Thought (1901) 
    Online:
    Quinn Slobodian — ‘The rise of the new tech right’, The New Statesman (2023)
    Written and presented by Dorian Lynskey and Ian Dunt. Audio production by Simon Williams. Music by Jade Bailey. Logo art by Mischa Welsh. Lead Producer is Anne-Marie Luff. Group Editor: Andrew Harrison. Origin Story is a Podmasters production.
    Twitter
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    • 1 hr 1 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
51 Ratings

51 Ratings

jakwaugin ,

Thanks

Insightful, entertaining and addictive 👌

S_Thornton ,

Love from Texas

Been listening to you all since Remainiacs. Absolutely love this podcasts and your other works. Can’t recommend this series enough!

Taking Walks ,

Fantastically Researched Podcast

This is possibly the most measured and intelligent podcast on the internet. These guys do a phenomenal job of deeply researching each topic, so that they can give their audience a much better understanding of any issue than they had before. GREAT work!

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