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Past Present

Past Present brings together three historians to discuss what's happening in American politics and culture today. Natalia, Neil, and Niki bring historical insights to the news of the day, offering listeners an alternative to the reflexive and polarized world of punditry. Interested in the world around you but exhausted by rote reactions and partisan talking points? You've come to the right place.
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Now displaying: 2016
Dec 27, 2016

In this week's special flashback episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia look back at three historical figures who died in 2016.

Dec 20, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate US involvement in Syria, the legacy of Japanese-American internment, and the 50th anniversary of the first Kwanzaa. 

Dec 13, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil discuss the future of the One-China policy, the tragedy of the Oakland fire, and the Mall of America's first black Santa.

Dec 6, 2016

In this week's episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate Fidel Castro's legacy, the future of liberalism, and the rise of fake news.

Nov 29, 2016

In this week's episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate the Trump University fraud settlement, Mike Pence's reception at Hamilton, and the wild turkey's distaste for the wild. 

Nov 22, 2016

In this week's episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate the role of citizenship in international adoption, Steve Bannon's appointment as Trump's chief strategist, and the place of safety pins in sartorial politics. 

Nov 15, 2016

In this week's special election episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia debate the onset of the Second Redemption, the highest and hardest glass ceiling, and the place of Donald Trump in global populism.

 

 

Nov 8, 2016

In this week's episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil debate the standoff at Standing Rock, the political role of the FBI, and the role of political pundits.

Nov 1, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate the history of the world series, texting while driving, and the history of Vegas. 

Oct 25, 2016

In this week's episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate the history of rigged elections, Wikileaks, and the importance of self-care.

 

Oct 18, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate Donald Trump and sexual harassment and assault, the great clown scare of 2016, and pit bull bans.

Oct 11, 2016

In this week's episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia debate the place of Transparent in the history of LGBTQ representation on television, fraud at Wells Fargo, and the 20th anniversary of Fox News. 

Oct 4, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil discuss the presidential debates, the constitutionality of stop and frisk, and obesity and medical care.

Sep 27, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate the dissolution of the Jolie-Pitt marriage, the price of EpiPens, and Dr. Oz and medical entertainment.

Sep 20, 2016

In this week's episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate secrecy and presidential health, New York City's universal pre-kindergarten, and the legacy of Star Trek.

Sep 13, 2016

In this week's episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia debate the canonization of Mother Teresa, the rise of the alt-right, and the menace of taco trucks.

Sep 6, 2016

In this week's episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate Colin Kaepernick's protest against the national anthem, France's burkini ban, and Walmart's high crime rate.

Aug 30, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia debate flood relief in Louisiana, the disappearance of Christian intellectuals, and teaching Trump in the classroom.

Aug 23, 2016

We're out on vacation -- see you next week! 

Aug 16, 2016

On this week's episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia debate recent court decisions on voting rights, sexism in Olympics commentary, and corporate influence in think tanks.

Aug 9, 2016

On this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate the Khans and the politics of grief, Roger Ailes and sexual harassment at Fox News, and the history of juicing.

Aug 2, 2016

On this week's episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki debate the changing role of the vice presidency, the history of beach-going, and the Russian doping scandal overshadowing the Rio Olympics.

Jul 26, 2016

In this week's episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate the history of Pokemon Go, the near-coup in Turkey, and the unintended consequences of political reform.

Jul 19, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate the police shooting in Dallas, the role of conventions in presidential politics, and the rise of anti-vaccine activism. 

 

Time stamps

 

Dallas: 4:13

Conventions: 19:33

Vaccines: 35:23

WMH: 46:36

Jul 12, 2016

In this week's episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate Elie Wiesel's impact on Americans' memory of the Holocaust, the place of Clinton's email controversy in presidential scandals, and the legacy of Guns N Roses.

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