Monday, September 28, 2009

Whalen / Rohrbough - NBIH

Somehow I have managed to keep up with the production schedule of New Books in History and in the same week listen to both a new and an old issue from this eminent podcast series.

The latest episode, an interview with Brett Whalen, takes us much further back than what we usually get in NBIH: to the age of the Crusades. The need for Crusades was connected with the eschatology notion that the word of Christ needed to be known onto the whole world and that Jerusalem better be in the hands of the Christians. What was it that only by the tenth century these ideas became so convincing that they could trigger an age of Crusades? Whalen takes us into the logic of the Crusades and in the process also shows how this crusading idea never died. Gives new thoughts on George W. Bush's use of the word Crusade in the context of the War against Terror.

For the older episode I simply went to the beginning of the feed and took the oldest issue: an interview with Malcolm Rohrbough. With Rohrbough, Marshal Poe speaks about the trans-Appalachian frontier. Rohrbough is said to be the one who has written the 'definitive story' on this issue. This is basically the effort to take the history of the western frontier from its earliest point and try to tell it as one from the beginning.

More NBIH:
Confronting the bomb,
Henry Hudson's fatal journey,
Substance abuse in the midwest,
How could they continue - NBIH on WW1 soldiers,
After slavery was abolished.
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