Thursday, March 24, 2011

Listening ideas for 24 March 2011

Thinking Allowed
New North
Professor Laurie Taylor discusses the influence of the 19th Century Temperance Movement and examines the notion of power and prosperity shifting to the frozen North.
(review, feed)

London School of Economics: Public lectures and events
Exorbitant Privilege: The Rise and Fall of the Dollar
The dollar, the world's international reserve currency for over eighty years, has been a pillar of American economic hegemony. In the words of one critic, the dollar possessed an "exorbitant privilege" in international finance that reinforced U.S. economic power. In Exorbitant Privilege, eminent economist Barry Eichengreen explains how the dollar rose to the top of the monetary order before turning to the current situation. Barry Eichengreen is Professor of Political Science and Economics at the University of California, Berkeley. He has written for the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, and other publications. This event celebrates the publication of his latest book Exorbitant Privilege: The Rise and Fall of the Dollar.
(review, feed)

KQED's Forum
Health Care Reform, a Year Later
One year ago, President Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as the health care reform bill. We discuss the bill's successes -- and failures -- one year later.
(review, feed)

In Our Time
The dawn of the Iron Age
In around 3000 BC European metalworkers started to make tools and weapons out of bronze. A complex trading network evolved to convey this valuable metal and other goods around the continent. But two millennia later, a new skill arrived from the Middle East: iron smelting. This harder, more versatile metal represented a huge technological breakthrough. The arrival of the European Iron Age, in around 1000 BC, was a time of huge social as well as technological change. New civilisations arose, the landscape was transformed, and societies developed new cultures and lifestyles. Whether this was the direct result of the arrival of iron is one of the most intriguing questions in archaeology.
(review, feed)

Het Marathoninterview
August Willemsen, vertaler Pessoa
Vertaler Willemsen was een begaafd stilist en ook in het gesproken woord drukte hij zich haarscherp, bijna ‘persklaar’, uit. Met relativering en humor sprak hij ook over zichzelf. Anton de Goede ging op zoek naar de ware August Willemsen op 30 juli 1999.
(review, feed)

Ottoman Age of Exploration

I am always ready to recommend any issue of the podcast New Books in History, but here is one that I consider among the essentials in history podcast listening: Marshal Poe interviews Giancarlo Casale about “The Ottoman Age of Exploration” (feed)

The great thing about history podcast listening is to get a grip on the general narrative of history. That is why I keep looking in all corners for good history podcasts: I am trying to have a fairly detailed idea of human history from the moment our ancestors stood upright until today. Frequently I find immense lacunae in the narrative as I got it from school. Giancarlo Casale fills such a lacuna.

We have heard plenty about the European age of exploration and we may have heard about the explorative journeys the Chinese undertook in the centuries before the Europeans began. But in between, there are also the Ottomans. Just like everybody else, they tried to explore the Indian Ocean, found their bases and profit from the spice trade. Casale explains when they did it, why and how. Casale also gives the best concise explanation I have heard ever, why exactly spices were such an excellent commodity. In short, this is stuff you must know to get a better understanding of what you had already learned.

More NBIH:
The mysteries of whites and of mass,
A Soviet Memoir,
This I accomplish,
Not your idea of World War II,
When Akkadian was Lingua Franca.