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204 Episodes
History for Halloween VI

History for Halloween VI


(Christine, Elizabeth, Kristin, Lesley, and Lucy) Ghosts, vampires, and more lurk in this year's installment of History for Halloween. Join us for our traditional episode featuring bits of history perfect for the creepiest time of the year.
The Chinese Exclusion Act

The Chinese Exclusion Act


(Nathan) In the 19th century, the Qing government of China faced major setbacks in the wake of military conflicts with European powers, spurring economic downturn and an immigration exodus out of the country. Increasing numbers of Chinese began to arrive on the West Coast of the United States, drawn by the California Gold Rush and seeking new economic opportunities to support their extended families back in China.  Soon, however, American economic conditions began to take on racist overtones, as public opinion began to turn against the Chinese.  In this episode, we look at the history of Chinese immigration to the United States, its increasing legal restrictions, and the long-term consequences of the Page Act of 1875 and the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. Further ReadingKil Young Zo, Chinese Emigration into the United States, 1850-1880 (Arno, 1978).Sucheng Chan, ed.  Entry Denied: Exclusion and the Chinese Community in America, 1882-1943 (Temple University Press, 1991).Judy Yung, Unbound Feet: A Social History of Chinese Women in San Francisco (University of California Press, 1995).Andrew Gyory, Closing the Gate: Race, Politics, and the Chinese Exclusion Act (University of North Carolina Press, 1998).George Anthony Peffer, If They Don't Bring Their Women Here: Chinese Female Immigration Before Exclusion (University of Illinois Press, 1999).Karen Leong, "'A Distant and Antagonistic Race': Constructions of Chinese Manhood in the Exclusionist Debates," in Across the Great Divide: Cultures of Manhood in the Amerian West.  Ed. Laura McCall, Matthew Basso, and Dee Garceau (Routledge, 2000), pp.131-48.Eithne Luibhéid, Entry Denied: Controlling Sexuality at the Border (University of Minnesota Press, 2002).Erika Lee, At America's Gates: Chinese Immigration during the Exclusion Era, 1882-1943 (University of North Carolina Press, 2003).Erika Lee and Judy Yung, Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America (Oxford University Press, 2010).Erika Lee, The Making of Asian America: A History (Simon & Schuster, 2015).Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod ( ​​​​​​
(Kristin) In the 1760s, Occramer Marycoo was taken to the American colonies against his will. When he re-crossed the Atlantic in 1826, he was a free man who also went by the name Newport Gardner. In between, he was a composer, a teacher, a small-business owner, and a prominent member of Newport, Rhode Island Free African community. In this episode, Kristin follows the remarkable journey of the man, who bought his freedom and returned to Africa, known as both Occramer Marycoo and Newport Gardner.   Further ReadingEdward E. Andrews, “The Crossings of Occramar Marycoo, or Newport Gardner,” in Atlantic Biographies: Individuals and Peoples in the Atlantic World, eds. Jeffrey A. Fortin and Mark Meuwese, Boston, (2014), 101-124.John Russell Bartlett, History of Lotteries and the Lottery System in Rhode Island, University of Rhode Island, (2003).Akeia A. F. Benard, “The Free African American Cultural Landscape: Newport, RI, 1774-1826”, PhD diss., University of Connecticut, (2008).Elaine Forman Crane, A Dependent People: Newport, Rhode Island in the Revolutionary Era, Fordham University Press, (1985, 1992).Newport Historical Society, “Newport Gardner Letter,” (2012).—, “Mapping the Newport Experience”.The Proceedings of the Free African Union Society and the African Benevolent Society, Newport, Rhode Island 1780-1824, ed. and intro, William H. Robinson, The Urban League of Rhode Island, (1976).Richard C. Youngken, African Americans in Newport, The Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission, (1998).“Crooked Shanks” performed.Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod ( 
(Lucy) Ache in the head, running of the nose, and the throat being pierced by pain like a spear: medieval descriptions of common ailments are often familiar, as well as startlingly vivid. This podcast episode looks at everyday remedies in medieval Europe. From chicken and barley to spiced wine, many such remedies were delicious and nutritious. Administering medicine — from comfort food to careful concoctions — was based on both education and experience. Further ReadingWinston Black, "I will add what the Arab once taught: Constantine the African in European Medical Verse," in A. Van Arsdall and T. Graham, (eds.) Herbs and Healers from the Ancient Mediterranean through the Medieval West: Essays in Honor of John M. Riddle, Ashgate, (2012), 153-186.Luis García Ballester, "Introduction," in Practical Medicine from Salerno to the Black Death, Cambridge University Press, (1994), 1-29.John Riddle, "Research Procedures in Evaluating Medieval Medicine," in B.S. Bowers (ed.) The Medieval Hospital and Medical Practice, Ashgate, (2007), 3-18.Faith Wallis, ed., Medieval Medicine: A Reader, University of Toronto Press, (2010).Practica Rogerii, Wellcome Collection.​Faith Wallis, ed. Medieval Medicine: A Reader. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2010.Winston Black, "I will add what the Arab once taught: Constantine the African in European Medical Verse," in: A. Van Arsdall and T. Graham, (eds.) Herbs and Healers from the Ancient Mediterranean through the Medieval West: Essays in Honor of John M. Riddle: 153-186. Farnham: Ashgate, 2012.Luis García Ballester. "Introduction," in: Practical Medicine from Salerno to the Black Death: 1-29. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.John Riddle, "Research Procedures in Evaluating Medieval Medicine," in: B.S. Bowers (ed.) The Medieval Hospital and Medical Practice: 3-18. Farnham: Ashgate, 2007.Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod ( ​
(Christine and Elizabeth) In April 2019, a fire at the French cathedral Notre-Dame de Paris had people around the world glued to their news feeds and televisions. Join Christine and Elizabeth for a discussion about some significant events that took place at Notre-Dame during one of France’s most turbulent periods, the span from the French Revolution to the exile of Napoleon III. Further ReadingDiana Reid Haig, Walks Through Marie Antoinette’s Paris, Ravenhall Books, (2006).Christopher Hibbert, The Days of the French Revolution, Perennial (1980).Jasper Ridley, Napoleon III and Eugenie, Viking, (1979).Andrew Roberts, Napoleon: A Life, Viking, (2014).Desmond Seward. Eugénie: The Empress and Her Empire. Sutton Publishing, (2004).Adam Zamoyski, Napoleon: The Man Behind the Myth, William Collins, (2018).Baptism of the Prince Imperial, via Fondation Napoleon.Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris via Fondation Napoleon.The Day of Napoleon's Coronation, via Fondation Napoleon.Notre-Dame de Paris Official Website.ImagesMalika Bouabdellah Dorbani, “July 28: Liberty Leading the People”, via Louvre.--, "The Consecration of the Emperor Napoleon and the Coronation of Empress Joséphine on December 2, 1804", via Louvre.Arrival of Napoleon III and Empress Eugenie’s cortege at Notre-Dame for their religious marriage ceremony, January 1853, via Bibliothèque nationale de France. Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette receiving well wishes from the people of Paris with Notre-Dame in the background, c 18th century, via Bibliothèque nationale de France. View of Notre-Dame de Paris and the New Sacristy, by Jean-Baptiste Lassus, 19th century, via Bibliothèque nationale de France. Related ContentThis episode is part of our Revolutionary France Series.Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod ( 
The Emu War

The Emu War


(Lesley) Of all the wars in the 20th century, no loss was more frustrating than the military operation against the emu in Western Australia in 1932. Learn about the treatment of these enormous flightless birds as an organized military formation and the subsequent disaster as no amount of military force could successfully and effectively defeat these warriors of the animal world. Further ReadingAdrian Burton, "Tell me, mate, what were emus like?", Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. 11:6 (2013).Bec Crew, "The Great Emu War: in which some large, flightless birds unwittingly foiled the Australian Army." Scientific American. (2014).Murray Johnson,  "'Feathered foes': soldier settlers and Western Australia's 'Emu War' of 1932". Journal of Australian Studies. 30:88 (2006), 147–157.Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod (
(Kristin) Theriac was a medicine of legendary origins, multiple ingredients, and a reputation for efficacy that extended for hundreds of years. It was said to be able to cure everything from migraines to the plague. In this episode, Kristin looks at some of the ingredients and processes that went into making theriac, where it could be found, who was selling it, and whether there was anything behind its extraordinary claims. Further ReadingHoward Brody, “Ritual, Medicine, and the Placebo Response,” in The Problem of Ritual Efficacy, eds. William S. Sax, Johannes Quack, and Jan Weinhold, Oxford University Press, (2010), 151-168.Christiane Nockels Fabbri, “Treating Medieval Plague: The Wonderful Virtues of Theriac,” Early Science and Medicine 12:3 (2007): 247-283.Michael McVaugh, “The Conceptual Background of Medieval Pharmacy,” in Arnaldi de Villanova: Opera medica omnia, vol 2, University of Barcelona, (1975), 13-30.“Theriac,” in The Trotula: An English Translation of the Medieval Compendium of Women’s Medicine, ed. and trans. by Monica H. Green, University of Pennsylvania Press, (2002), 132-133. ​Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod ( 
(Nathan) The landscape of the Christian afterlife has never been static, and over the last 2,000 years, the theology of what the hereafter looks like has evolved drastically. In this episode, we trace the origins and medieval development of one of the most significant and controversial Christian beliefs: Purgatory. Further ReadingJacques Le Goff,  The Birth of Purgatory,  Trans. Arthur Goldhammer., University of Chicago Press, 1986.Abagail Frey, ed.  A New History of Penance.  Brill, 2008.Robert Meens, Penance in Medieval Europe, 600-1200.  Cambridge University Press, 2014.Isabel Moreira,  Heaven's Purge: Purgatory in Late Antiquity.  Oxford University Press, 2010.Peter Brown, "The Decline of the Empire of God: Amnesty, Penance, and the Afterlife from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages."  In Last Things: Death and the Apocalypse in the Middle Ages.  Ed. Caroline Walker Bynum and Paul Freedman.  University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000.  pp.41-59.Peter Brown, "The End of the Ancient Other World: Death and the Afterlife Between Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages."  The Tanner Lectures on Human Values 20 (1999): 19-85.Carolyn Walker Bynum, The Resurrection of the Dead in Western Christianity, 200-1336.  Columbia University Press, 1995.Joseph Ntedika,  L'Évolution de la doctrine du purgatoire chez saint Augustin.  Études Augustiniennes, 1966.Alan F.  Segal,LIfe After Death: A History of the Afterlife in Western Religion.  Doubleday, 1989.​Marina Smythe, "The Origins of Purgatory Through the Lens of Seventh-Century Irish Eschatology," Traditio 58 (2003): 91-132.​Music: "Evening Melodrama" by Kevin Macleod ( 
(Elizabeth) One of the most famous poets of WWI is largely unknown today. In this episode, Elizabeth reviews the life and poems of Jessie Pope to determine who she was, why Wilfred Owen hated her so, and why we don't know more about her today.
(Lesley) The Declaration of Independence has many well-known men's names on it, especially that of John Hancock. But what of the woman whose name appears on the printed version of this auspicious document? In this episode, Lesley explores the life and role of early American printer Mary Katharine Goddard. An important contributor to the fledgling American government, Goddard's name should be better known for politics, journalism, and revolution.
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