Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Vietnam War perspectives - NBIH

Interview podcasts such as New Books in History are, in my opinion, a particularly effective genre. Podcast seems to fit interviews and the technicalities of recording phone calls, especially on internet channeled calls, are not particularly complicated. So it is uncomplicated and it gives a result that is accessible for the listener and this counts for the success of New Books in History among others. Yet, at times, NBIH has more than one interview guest and then it is more difficult to pull the whole thing off.

The interview with Mark Bradley and Marilyn Young that came out last week, is a case in point. The result is quite good; and by all means this interview is heartily recommended. The sounds levels on the two lines are evened out, which would not automatically be the case and this could result in one speaker to be less audible than the other. Apart from these technical points on the audio, there are the cues for the speakers. And here, Bradley and Young occasionally tread on each other and the result is a bit chaotic here and there.

After all, the issue is very good, thanks to the content. Bradley and Young edited a multi-perspective book on the Vietnam Wars and they manage to concisely offer, in the podcast, a glimpse of how many angles there are and what important insights there are to be had from the book. One perspective that is not in there, is the one that Bradley and Young call revisionist and that is the idea that the Vietnam War was actually won by the US, or if not, could have been won.

More NBIH:
1989 - Padraic Kenney,
The Ossie twilight,
The first day of LBJ,
Ayn Rand,
Atlantic History.