Listen Up: Public History the Audio Way

On weekly basis I spend an excessive amount of time in a car (over 10 hours a week).  One of the few upsides of this car time is my listening to talk radio, podcasts, and audio books. Some of the great public history oriented listening material I’ve taken in lately includes:

  • In Their Shoes on CBC’s Ideas program.  This particular Ideas episode focuses on Katherine Govier’s ESL work with immigrant women, and her work on the Shoe Project.   The Shoe Project is a  Bata Shoe Museum exhibit focuses on the shoes that brought immigrants to Canada.
  • NPR’s Fresh Air interview with Craig Timberg.  Timberg is the co-author of the book Tinderbox: How The West Fueled The AIDS Epidemic”  The interview examines the history of AIDS, the impact of colonialism and AIDS in Africa,and recent trends in preventative programs.
  • A recent interview on CBC’s Spark with David McCandless, which focuses on information design.  The interview provides an interesting look at big data and data visualization.
  • Library and Archives Canada recently announced a new podcast series, “Discover Library and Archives Canada: Your History, Your Documentary Heritage.” The first podcast in the series focuses on Project Naming, an initiative to identify persons in photographs of Canada’s North.

The Massey Lectures

This year marks the 50th anniversary of CBC’s Massey Lectures.  The lecture series is named after Vincent Massey, Canada’s first Canadian born Governor General.  Each year the CBC Radio (now in collaboration with the House of Anansi Press, and Massey College in the University of Toronto) invites a well known scholar to present his original research in a lecture series that is later broadcast nation wide.

This year’s lecturer was Adam Gopnik, who’s talk was entitled “Winter: Five Windows on the Season.”   In addition to Gopnik’s contribution, the entire past 50 years of the Massey Lectures are now available online.