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Best Scott Rank, PhD podcasts we could find (updated July 2020)
Best Scott Rank, PhD podcasts we could find
Updated July 2020
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For history lovers who listen to podcasts, History Unplugged is the most comprehensive show of its kind. It's the only show that dedicates episodes to both interviewing experts and answering questions from its audience. First, it features a call-in show where you can ask our resident historian (Scott Rank, PhD) absolutely anything (What was it like to be a Turkish sultan with four wives and twelve concubines? If you were sent back in time, how would you kill Hitler?). Second, it features lon ...
 
The Ottoman Empire lasted for six hundred years and dominated the Middle East and Europe, from Budapest to Baghdad and everything in between. The sultans ruled three continents. But they didn't do it on their own. This podcast looks at the cast of characters who made the empire run: the sultan, the queen mother, the peasant, the janissary, the harem eunuch, the holy man, and the outlaw.
 
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At the dawn of the twentieth century, when human flight was still considered an impossibility, Germany's Count von Zeppelin vied with the Wright Brothers to build the world's first successful flying machine. As the Wrights labored to invent the airplane, Zeppelin fathered the wondrous airship, sparking a bitter rivalry between the two types of airc…
 
In the middle of World War II, Nazi military intelligence discovered a seemingly easy way to win the war for Adolf Hitler. The three heads of the Allied forces—Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Josef Stalin—were planning to meet in Iran in October 1943. Under Hitler's personal direction, the Nazis launched “Operation Long Jump,” an intrica…
 
In the summer of 1843, James Strang, a charismatic young lawyer and avowed atheist, vanished from a rural town in New York. Months later he reappeared on the Midwestern frontier and converted to a burgeoning religious movement known as Mormonism. In the wake of the murder of the sect’s leader, Joseph Smith, Strang unveiled a letter purportedly from…
 
Before World War II, Herbert Cukurs was a famous figure in his small Latvian city, the “Charles Lindbergh of his country.” But by 1945, he was the Butcher of Latvia, a man who murdered some thirty thousand Latvian Jews. Somehow, he dodged the Nuremberg trials, fleeing to South America after war’s end. By 1965, as a statute of limitations on all Naz…
 
“Paratroopers are about the most peculiar breed of human beings I have ever witnessed. They treat their service as if it were some kind of cult, plastering their emblem on almost everything they own, making themselves up to look like insane fanatics with haircuts to ungentlemanly lengths, worshiping their units almost as if they were a God, and mak…
 
In 1967, a retired army major and self-made millionaire named Paddy Roy Bates cemented his family's place in history when he inaugurated himself ruler of the Principality of Sealand, a tiny dominion of the high seas. And so began the peculiar story of the world's most stubborn micronation on a World War II anti-aircraft gun platform off the British…
 
Introducing the newest Audioboom original podcast, Truth vs Hollywood. Join Film lovers David Chen and Joanna Robinson as they do a deep dive into well-known films and discuss how similar they are to the actual story. Truth vs Hollywood premieres 6/12. Subscribe to Truth vs Hollywood on Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/truth-vs…
 
One of the most misconstrued events in history is the Galileo affair. It is commonly understood as a black-and-white morality play of science vs. religion. Galileo proves the Sun is the center of the solar system but the reactionary medieval Catholic Church is scandalized by somebody questioning their geocentric model. They imprison and torture the…
 
During the brutal winter of 1775-1776, an untested Boston bookseller named Henry Knox commandeered an oxen train hauling sixty tons of cannons and other artillery from Fort Ticonderoga near the Canadian border. He and his men journeyed some three hundred miles south and east over frozen, often-treacherous terrain to supply George Washington for his…
 
On the eve of the 1948 election, America was a fractured country. Racism was rampant, foreign relations were fraught, and political parties were more divided than ever. Americans were certain that President Harry S. Truman’s political career was over. “The ballots haven’t been counted,” noted political columnist Fred Othman, “but there seems to be …
 
Most confrontations, viewed from the wide angle of history, are minor disputes, sparks that quickly die out. But every now and then, someone strikes a match that lights up the whole planet. That idea applies to Henry Every, the seventeenth century’s most notorious pirate. The press published wildly popular—and wildly inaccurate—reports of his nefar…
 
Ludwig II of Bavaria was a dreamer, above all. The king famously built fairy-tale style castles that adorned the Alps but were completely useless for defensive or social reasons (the king held large balls there where he was the only attendee and dined alone, maintaining conversations with his imaginary friends, Louis XIV and Marie Antoinette). Less…
 
Americans might have been tempted to schadenfreude after learning the fate of British King George III. The villain of the American Revolution spent the final years of his life insane, having long arguments with imaginary figures who had died long ago (and often losing those arguments). He experienced five extended bouts of madness in his life, with…
 
Ottoman Sultan Ibrahim (1616-1648) believed he was the sort of ruler that came out of legend, so he ordered a massive tax to fund the decoration of his palace in sable fur. He also preferred full-figured women and commissioned his advisers to find for him the largest woman in his realm. Such a woman was found; she weighted over three hundred pounds…
 
King Charles VI of France (1368-1422) suffered from a particular disorder called "The Glass Delusion." He believed himself to be made of glass and could shatter at any moment. Advisors were told to tiptoe toward him and not wear shoes. He refused bathing for extended periods so as not to fracture. Fate was unkind to Charles VI. He began well; the k…
 
When Salvador Dali set out to paint a depiction of the infamous Roman Emperor Caligula in 1971, he chose to depict the thing nearest and dearest to the emperor's heart: his favorite racehorse, Incitatus. The painting “Le Cheval de Caligula” shows the pampered pony in all his royal glory. It is wearing a bejeweled crown and clothed in purple blanket…
 
Few mixtures are as toxic as absolute power and insanity. When nothing stands between a leader's delusional whims and seeing them carried out, all sorts of bizarre outcomes are possible. This is the beginning of a series launch in tandem with Scott's new book "History's Nine Most Insane Rulers." We will look at the lives of the nine most mentally u…
 
In 1942, the Allies were losing, Germany seemed unstoppable, and every able man in England was on the front lines. To “set Europe ablaze,” in the words of Winston Churchill, the Special Operations Executive (SOE), whose spies were trained in everything from demolition to sharpshooting, was forced to do something unprecedented: recruit women. Thirty…
 
After World War II the German economy was a smoldering ruin. Scorched-earth policies destroyed 20-70% of all houses. Factories, hospitals, and schools were bomb craters. Germans only ate 1,000-1500 calories a day. There was no food in the stores because price controls disincentivized shop keepers and farmers to sell anywhere except the black market…
 
Delving into your family history can reveal many surprises, but for Russian-American author Alex Halberstadt, it meant learning about his grandfather's experience as Joseph Stalin's bodyguard. As the last living member of Stalin's security revenue, his grandfather, who lives in Ukraine, spoke of the fear of coming to work every day with the possibi…
 
One of the most mysterious submarine disasters in history was the sinking of the HL Hunley, a Confederate Civil War submarine. This 40-foot-long tin can was the first to successfully attack another ship—but the results were as disastrous as they were historic. Shortly after its torpedo exploded, the Hunley disappeared off the coast of Charleston. T…
 
After the massive devastation and scorched earth wartime methods of the Civil War, America tried to rebuild itself. This era was known as Reconstruction and lasted from 1865 to 1877. Many hoped at the beginning that the South would peacefully re-enter the Union, slaves would enjoy full liberty as American citizens, and the United States would emerg…
 
Join Lindsay Graham, the host of Wondery’s show American Scandal as he dives deep into the heart of the most shocking moments of fraud and deception in American history. In this six-part series “The Hare Krishna Murders” he explores an eastern religion with pure intentions that, in the hands of its western followers, became a criminal enterprise of…
 
Everyone thinks they know what happened at the Lincoln assassination… but do they? After 150 years, a multitude of unsolved mysteries and urban legends still surround the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Today's guest is Robert Hutchinson, author of the book "What Really Happened: The Lincoln Assassination." He takes a new look at the case and exp…
 
Japan’s WWII development of a nuclear program is not universally known. But after decades of research into national intelligence archives both in the US and abroad, today’s guest Robert Wilcox builds on his earlier accounts and provides the most detailed account available of the creation of Japan’s version of our own Manhattan Project—from the proj…
 
John and Jessie Frémont, the husband and wife team who in the 1800s were instrumental in the westward expansion of the United States, became America’s first great political couple. John C. Frémont, one of the United States’s leading explorers of the nineteenth century, was relatively unknown in 1842, when he commanded the first of his expeditions t…
 
Fiction abounds with stories of Nazi Superscience: From Captain America's nemesis Red Skull to the B-movie treasure Iron Sky (which suggests the Third Reich established a moon base after the war). But the trope is based in some fact. Nazis did aggressively research cutting edge weapons to turn the tide of a war they were increasingly losing. Some w…
 
With the endless talk of COVID-19, many think we are facing an unprecedented threat of the collapse of our civilization. But Dan Carlin, host of Hardcore History, doesn’t believe anything we are facing is unprecedented. He’s spent years looking at apocalyptic moments from the past as a way to understand the challenges of the future. Dan joins us on…
 
Business Wars is a weekly podcast from Wondery, and each season digs deep into some of the greatest corporate rivalries of all time. Think Facebook VS Snapchat or Nike VS Adidas. On each episode they give you an inside look at what inspired entrepreneurs to take risks that drove their companies to new heights -- or into the ground. In this season “…
 
Before the 1900s, solving a murder was done using conjectural theories or flimsy psychological notions of what makes a killer a killer. That all changed with the development of forensic techniques employed at crime scenes, but few know the origin story of these now taken-for-granted methods of solving murders and other misdeeds. It all changed with…
 
A listener named Liam requested an episode looking at a deep dive into his hometown of Montreal and how it came to be a center of commerce and culture in North America. We’ll do that, but rather than talk about historical buildings and fountains (and other facts you'd find in a Frommers Guide) we’ll look way deeper and see how Montreal was a cultur…
 
The 1920s in Florida was a time of incredible excess, immense wealth, and precipitous collapse. The decade there produced the largest human migration in American history, far exceeding the settlement of the West, as millions flocked to the grand hotels and the new cities that rose rapidly from the teeming wetlands. The boom spawned a new subdivisio…
 
Quarantines are nothing new: they've been used since at least the Bronze Age to prevent the spread of leprosy. In this episode (rebroadcasted from a Facebook Livestream), we'll look at the various ways that humans rode out the plague and other disease. Some panicked, like the Flagellators during the Black Death. But others took advantage of the tim…
 
When people think of the American Civil War, specific images spring to mind—Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, Scarlett O’Hara escaping a burning Atlanta in a hoop skirt, and blue and grey uniforms clashing on bloodied battlefields. The war is well researched, but there is still the little-known, yet still vastly important, history of the Civil War in t…
 
Nearly 1,600 years after Patrick arrived on Ireland (first as a slave, then as a missionary who brought Christianity to the island), he is celebrated as the patron saint of the Emerald Isle and apocryphally believed to have eliminated snakes from the island (which he didn't, but the belief makes sense if you replace snakes with pre-Christian pagani…
 
COVID19, aka - the coronavirus, has triggered mass quarantines and spooked markets across the globe. To date, over 3,000 have died and over 100,000 infected. But however dangerous this virus ends up being, it doesn't belong in the same galaxy as Spanish Flu, which killed up to 100 million in 1918, which was 5 percent of the earth's population. Toda…
 
“Always remember—you’re a Madison. You come from African slaves and a president” This was Betty Kearse's family motto; a way to remember that they were descended from James Madison, but also Coreen, a slave who worked on the Montpelier plantation whom her descendants believe had a child with the fourth president. Kearse, a pediatrician and author o…
 
The Cold War existed vaguely in a fifty-year stretch and lacked the defining moments of a major military conflict. However, there is a strong argument to be made that it defined the 20th century. While most point to World Wars One and Two as the most important events of the century, the institutions that dominate today's nations are by-products of …
 
Some American presidents appear to do their jobs in a more organized way than others, but the White House has always been filled with ambitious people playing for the highest stakes and bearing bitter grudges. There is a myth that staffs all compromise and put aside petty differences for the greater good. But behind the scenes, staff members leaked…
 
When Clarence Smoyer is assigned to the gunner’s seat of his Sherman tank, his crewmates discover that the gentle giant from Pennsylvania has a hidden talent: He’s a natural born shooter. At first, Clarence and his fellow crews in the legendary 3rd Armored Division—“Spearhead”—thought their tanks were invincible. Then they met the German Panther, w…
 
If you visit New York, your waiter, your cabbie, or the lady on the train playing Candy Crush could very well not be who they appear to be. That's because there are more spies working in New York City today than ever before, according to H. Keith Melton, the espionage advisor on The Americans, and Robert Wallace, the former chief of the CIA’s Offic…
 
In July 1881, Lt. A.W. Greely and his crew of 24 scientists and explorers were bound for the last region unmarked on global maps. Their goal: Farthest North. What would follow was one of the most extraordinary and terrible voyages ever made. Greely and his men confronted every possible challenge―vicious wolves, sub-zero temperatures, and months of …
 
Hannibal ad portas! The phrase was enough to terrify anyone in the Roman Republic and became an adage for parents to scare their children at nights: “Hannibal is at the gates.” The Carthaginian commander nearly destroyed Rome in the 3rd century BC and posed the republic's greatest threat until the empire collapsed in the fifth century AD. What made…
 
Many people think the Negro Leagues as a sad, somber part of America's legacy of racial division. In many ways it is, says Bob Kendrick, president of the Negro League Baseball Museum. But on the 100th anniversary of its founding, he stresses that it is moreover a triumphant story about what came out of segregation, and the result was a much richer,…
 
“The Hands of the King are the Hands of a Healer” -- this phrase appears in the Lord of the Rings, referring to how Aragorn was identified as the king of Gondor by his healing powers. Tolkien likely based this ability on an actual ceremony in England and France where thousands would gather to be touched by the king and be healed of their illnesses.…
 
The 1949-50 City College Beavers basketball team were incredible underdogs who experienced an incredible rise and subsequent fall from grace. At a time when the National Basketball Association was still segregated, the Beavers team was composed entirely of minority players – eight Jews and four African Americans. In 1950 the City College Beavers be…
 
Civil War historians have asked if the South could have won the Civil War (or at least fought to a stalemate) since 1866. If they would have won, then what then? What would a divided states of America have looked like? Would a USA and a CSA have a happy peace and maintain a cooperative co-existence, like North and South Dakota, or maintain a cold w…
 
Today's episode features a special guest, James Stavridis, a four-star U.S. Navy Admiral and former Supreme Allied Commander of NATO. He joins us to discuss the ten greatest admirals in history and looks at their examples of leadership and resourcefulness. Case studies include Themistocles, English Sea Captain Francis Drake, Chinese explorer Zheng …
 
Could one American diplomat have prevented the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor? The answer might be yes. America’s ambassador to Japan in 1941, Joseph Grew, certainly thought so. He saw the writing on the wall—economic sanctions were crippling Japan, rice was rationed, consumer goods were limited, and oil was scarce as America’s noose tightened aro…
 
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