Thursday, October 16, 2008

Warning: Podcast Recommendation

Somewhere in my travels I came across a podcast called “Hardcore History” by a guy named Dan Carlin.

Carlin actually does two podcasts; the second one is called “Common Sense with Dan Carlin” and, apparently, is more political in nature. Fact is, I’ve never listened to “Common Sense” and only just discovered it this morning while I was researching “Hardcore History” so I can’t give it the official TMUOTF imprimatur yet.

“Hardcore History” however, gets the TMUOTF gold star and his two most recent podcasts are mind-blowing, unbelievable stories.

But before I get into the juicy details, let me make some observations about podcasts. First, I love ‘em. My music consumption has been cut in half because of them. In fact, this post started as a eulogy for the music consumer I used to be but that seemed a little melodramatic and not entirely accurate either. More on that in a future post.

Podcasts, like blogs, fall all over the map because of their DIY nature. You can listen to some as background noise while you work and others require your attention and focus.

“Hardcore History” is in the latter category. It usually runs an hour or longer and works well for car rides and commutes. Carlin describes himself as an amateur historian. This love of history combined with his background in broadcasting plus a flair for story telling makes these podcasts great history classes even if you never liked history classes.

So if you do decide to follow these links, give them a fair chance. I think you’ll be rewarded.

Start with his current three-part series on The Punic Wars which took place between Carthage and Rome between 264 and 146 BC.

WAIT! WAIT! WAIT! Really, it’s so much more exciting and fascinating than you’re thinking right now. You’ve got to hear these. Please. Give me your confidence and trust on this.

Part I and Part II have been posted. (Scroll down on that link to get to both parts and make sure you listen to them in the right order! They are also available on iTunes .) It might be a month or longer before we get Part III but I’ll bet that you’ll be waiting like me to hear the conclusion.

(And Bob, I hope you’ll give a listen and offer some feedback from the perspective of a history major…)

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