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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: Page 1
Jan 31, 2023

In this episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki discuss the history of the sleepover – and why they have become so complicated for parents today.

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Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show:

 

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Jan 24, 2023

In this episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia discuss the “nepo baby” phenomenon.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Jan 17, 2023

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss the political controversy over regulating gas stoves.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Jan 10, 2023

In this episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia discuss the process of selecting the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Jan 3, 2023

In this episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil discuss – and celebrate! – Natalia’s new book Fit Nation: The Gains and Pains of America’s Exercise Obsession.

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Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show:

 

  • Fit Nation is now available for order. You can buy here.

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Dec 20, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki discuss the history of ROTC.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Dec 13, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki discuss the history of prisoner exchanges.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Dec 6, 2022

In this episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia discuss the resurgence of antisemitism in the United States.

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  • Former president Donald Trump dined at Mar-a-Lago with noted antisemites Kanye West and Nick Fuentes. Niki referred to this Arizona Mirror piece about the Kari Lake’s endorsement of an antisemite in Arizona. Natalia referenced this Washington Post article about the resurgence of an antisemitism many thought a relic of the past.

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Nov 22, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss the new weight loss drug, Ozempic.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Nov 15, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia discuss the results of the 2022 midterm elections.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Nov 8, 2022

In this episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil discuss the past and uncertain future of affirmative action in higher education.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Nov 1, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki discuss the recent scourge of rats in New York City and elsewhere.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Oct 25, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki discuss the history of panics over contaminated Halloween candy.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Oct 18, 2022

In this episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia discuss the senatorial campaign of John Fetterman and his recovery from a stroke.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Oct 11, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss the Senate campaign of Herschel Walker and the controversy it has created.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Oct 4, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia discuss the political protests in Iran.

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Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show: 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Sep 27, 2022

In this episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil discuss the recent pickleball phenomenon.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Sep 20, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki discuss the averted railroad strike.

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Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show:

 

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Sep 13, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki discuss the death of Queen Elizabeth II. 

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Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show:

 

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Sep 6, 2022

In this episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia discuss the life and legacy of Mikhail Gorbachev.

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Here are some links and references mentioned during this week’s show:

 

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Aug 30, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss – and celebrate! - the publication of Niki’s new book, Partisans: The Conservative Revolutionaries Who Remade American Politics in the 1990s.

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  • Partisans drops on August 30, 2022. You can order Niki’s book here.

 

 

In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

 

Aug 16, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Niki, and Natalia discuss the defamation trial of right-wing conspiracist Alex Jones.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Aug 9, 2022

In this episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil discuss the history of third parties in American politics.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Aug 2, 2022

In this episode, Natalia, Neil, and Niki discuss the history of U.S. national parks.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

Jul 26, 2022

In this episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki discuss the growing popularity of prenuptial agreements.

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In our regular closing feature, What’s Making History:

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