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Keith Kahn-Harris

Uncivil War: the Israel-Palestinian Conflict and the Jewish Community

  “For Jews, Israel goes very close to the heart, whether you’re a Jewish supporter of Israel or you’re a Jewish critic of Israel and of Zionism, it’s very hard to be indifferent about it. In fact, it would be very odd if most Jews were indifferent about Israel because this is the major project […]

Continue Reading · 1 May, 2014 · history and politics, podcasts, religion and belief
Rossi Zhiguli

Catriona Kelly St Petersburg interview – part II

I don’t want to normalize it completely, but I think Britain has many of the same problems as Russia actually: mass alcoholism – there’s plenty of that – a governing elite that doesn’t really give a toss for anybody, doesn’t have its finger on the pulse of what’s going on, what happens when you administer […]

Continue Reading · 3 April, 2014 · history and politics, podcasts
Outside the Public Library on the Fontanka

Catriona Kelly on shadows of St Petersburg’s past

The present and the past are intertwined and it doesn’t matter if what people remember about the past isn’t true – it’s got significance for them now. I’m going between lots of different layers, because that’s what people do in their conversation. My guest in this programme is Catriona Kelly, who is Professor of Russian […]

Continue Reading · 21 March, 2014 · history and politics, podcasts
leningrad anna reid

On the siege of Leningrad

My guest in this podcast is Anna Reid, a historian of Russia and author of Leningrad: Tragedy of a City under Siege 1941-4, the first book in English to be devoted to the siege since 1969. The siege by the German army lasted 900 days and led to the deaths of three quarters of a […]

Continue Reading · 31 January, 2014 · history and politics, podcasts
mummy's curse cover

Excavating the mummy’s curse

Roger Luckhurst‘s 2012 book, The Mummy’s Curse, is much more than just an opportunity to revisit the familiar story of Howard Carter’s discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb in the winter of 1922 and the death soon after of his patron Lord Carnarvon in circumstances ascribed to the eponymous curse. Roger’s real interest is in finding out […]

Continue Reading · 26 January, 2014 · history and politics, podcasts, supernatural
Vesna Goldsworthy: Inventing Ruritania

Inventing Ruritania – Vesna Goldsworthy

I recently interviewed Serbian-born, London-based writer, poet, and academic Vesna Goldsworthy, whose books include a  collection of poetry, The Angel of Salonika, and a memoir entitled Chernobyl Strawberries, which one reviewer described as “suffused with a longing complicated and deepened by the eradication of the Yugoslav state”. I met Vesna to discuss Inventing Ruritania: The […]

Continue Reading · 11 June, 2013 · historical fiction, history and politics, literature, podcasts
ten popes who shook the world

“These are a few of my favourite popes…”

Yes, the title of this post is admittedly a little misleading – the popes in the podcast (popecast?) are not necessarily the favourites of my guest, Eamon Duffy, but those who he thinks have had the greatest impact on history – The Ten Popes who Shook the World. Eamon’s popes range from Saint Peter to […]

Continue Reading · 19 February, 2013 · history and politics, podcasts, religion and belief
Horses

Food adulteration is nothing new

With horse meat cropping up all over the place in food in the UK at the moment, I went back to the interview I recorded in 2008 for Princeton University Press with Bee Wilson about her book Swindled: From Poison Sweets to Ersatz Coffee. As the book makes clear, (justifiable) concern about what’s in our […]

Continue Reading · 8 February, 2013 · economics, food and drink, history and politics
louise f

Louise Foxcroft on (historical) celebrity dieters

Louise Foxcroft on Calories and Corsets from George Miller on Vimeo.

Continue Reading · 5 January, 2013 · food and drink, history and politics, podcasts, video
Beauchamp kills Sharp

Pieter Spierenburg on Violence and Punishment

“Pieter Spierenburg is one of the world’s experts on the history of violent crime, and his writings are filled with fascinating facts and thought-provoking insights.” Steven Pinker, Harvard University Pieter Spierenburg is professor of historical criminology at Erasmus University, Rotterdam. In 2008 Polity published his History of Murder: Personal Violence in Europe from the Middle […]

Continue Reading · 10 December, 2012 · anthropology, history and politics, podcasts, social sciences