By Malcolm Gladwell / Pushkin
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Revisionist History is Malcolm Gladwell's journey through the overlooked and the misunderstood. Every episode re-examines something from the past—an event, a person, an idea, even a song—and asks whether we got it right the first time. From Pushkin Industries. Because sometimes the past deserves a second chance.
||CleanRick Rubin||Revisionist History presents the first episode of a new podcast, Broken Record.||12 11 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanRevisionist History Presents: Broken Record||From Revisionist History host Malcolm Gladwell, Rick Rubin, and Bruce Headlam: Conversations. Arguments. Stories. Remembering old music. Discovering new music. Broken Record: Liner notes for the digital age.||5 11 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanAnalysis, Parapraxis, Elvis||The one song The King couldn’t sing.||18 7 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanStrong Verbs, Short Sentences||“She was Joan of Arc, Madame Curie, and Florence Nightingale—all wrapped up in one.”||11 7 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Imaginary Crimes of Margit Hamosh||Epidemics of fear repeat themselves. The first time as tragedy. The second time as farce. Margit Hamosh? Definitely farce.||4 7 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanMalcolm Gladwell's 12 Rules for Life||Crucial life lessons from the end of hockey games, Idris Elba, and some Wall Street guys with a lot of time on their hands.||27 6 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Hug Heard Round the World||Q: Was there a period where you felt you had something to prove? A: The first 45 years of my life.||20 6 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanGeneral Chapman’s Last Stand||Good fences make good neighbors. Or maybe not.||13 6 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanFree Brian Williams||"Sorry dude, I don't remember you being on my aircraft."||6 6 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanA Polite Word for Liar||An early morning raid, a house-full of Nazis, the world’s greatest harmonica player, and a dashingly handsome undercover spy. What could possibly go wrong?||30 5 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanBurden of Proof||“He called to wish me ‘Happy Birthday.’ Then he said, ‘I’m failing everything.’”||23 5 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanDivide and Conquer||The complete, unabridged history of the world’s most controversial semicolon.||16 5 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanBonus: Malcolm Gladwell debates Adam Grant||In a special live taping at the 92nd Street Y in New York, Malcolm talks with WorkLife’s Adam Grant about how to avoid doing highly undesirable tasks, what makes an idea interesting, and why Malcolm thinks we shouldn't root for the underdog.||9 5 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanIntroducing Revisionist History Season Three||Malcolm Gladwell is back with season three of Revisionist History: harmonica players, mass delusion, semicolons, and a constitutional crisis. Launching May 17th on Panoply.||2 5 2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Basement Tapes||What is a son’s obligation to his father?||16 8 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanMcDonald’s Broke My Heart||They made the world’s greatest French Fry. Then they threw it away.||9 8 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanMr. Hollowell Didn’t Like That||Arrested, arraigned, indicted, tried, convicted, and sentenced to die in the electric chair in 24 hours.||2 8 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanState v Johnson||“Nobody was interested in justice.”||26 7 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe King of Tears||Why country music makes you cry, and rock and roll doesn’t: A musical interpretation of divided America.||19 7 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Prime Minister and the Prof||The friendship that changed the course of World War II.||12 7 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Foot Soldier of Birmingham||“Oh, Mac. What did you do?”||5 7 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanMiss Buchanan’s Period of Adjustment||A landmark Supreme Court case. A civil rights revolution. Why has everyone forgotten what happened next?||28 6 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Road to Damascus||What happens when a terrorist has a change of heart?||21 6 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanA Good Walk Spoiled||Rich people and their addiction to golf: a philosophical investigation.||14 6 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanIntroducing Revisionist History Season Two||From bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell, season two of Revisionist History launches June 15th.||25 5 2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Satire Paradox||In an age dominated by political comedy, “The Satire Paradox” asks whether laughter and social protest are friends or foes.||17 8 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanGenerous Orthodoxy||Chester Wenger offers all of us a master class in the art of dissent||10 8 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanBlame Game||What happens when hysteria overtakes common sense?||3 8 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanHallelujah||How does genius emerge?||27 7 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanMy Little Hundred Million||Why has it proven so difficult for other philanthropists to follow Hank Rowan's lead?||20 7 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanFood Fight||Bowdoin College and Vassar College are two elite private schools that compete for the same students.||13 7 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanCarlos Doesn’t Remember||America leaves an enormous amount of talent on the table every year. “Carlos Doesn’t Remember” explains why.||6 7 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Big Man Can't Shoot||Wilt Chamberlain’s brilliant career was marred by one, deeply inexplicable decision.||29 6 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanSaigon, 1965||In the early 1960s, the Pentagon set up a top-secret research project in an old villa in downtown Saigon.||22 6 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanThe Lady Vanishes||In the late 19th century, a painting titled The Roll Call, by a virtually unknown artist, took England by storm.||16 6 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanIntroducing Revisionist History||Coming soon, a new podcast series from bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell.||3 6 2016||Free||View in iTunes|
Great podcast, lots of historical mistakes
I've just listened to the first episode. This is a beautifully produced podcast, as flawless as Serial, and I'm sure I'll be listening to more. But wow - Malcolm Gladwell really isn't kidding about the 'revisionist' part of the title, is he? He completely rewrites the history of recent Australian politics over the course of half an hour.
I agree with his overall point about tokenism, but I think Australia's recent political history is a bad example. Here are some of the things he gets wrong:
- the pronunciation of Julia Gillard's name
- Julia Gillard is a poor example of tokenism, because she wasn't actually elected. She ousted an extremely popular Prime Minister of her own party, who was elected on a tidal wave of support and was still well-loved by the Australian electorate when he was forced out of office by his own party. Even though this is technically allowed in Australian politics, it had never been done before. It was historic. And it seemed illegitimate - that was the source of a lot of the resentment and sexism that followed, not the 'let's pat ourselves on the back because we've allowed a woman into office' feeling.
- In her second term, Gillard's party was unable to get a majority and had to form a minority government in coalition with another party. So to say that she was chosen, and then the door was slammed shut in her face, is just mischaracterising her time in office. There was always a feeling that she was only Prime Minister because other people were 'allowing' it, and that it went against 'the will of the people'.
- Gillard was not Australia's last Prime Minister. She was ousted by the same person who she ousted, Kevin Rudd. There have been three Prime Ministers since she was forced from office (Rudd, Abbott, and now Turnbull), but only one election (Rudd versus Abbott). Nobody actually liked Abbott, her sexist opponent depicted in this podcast - he had the lowest approval rating of any Prime Minister in Australian history - but there was a feeling that the Labor party, with its constant leadership changes, just wasn't up to the job.
- Peter Slipper, the speaker of the house, was not a member of Gillard's party. He was a member of Tony Abbott's party. Then he became an independent when he took the Speaker's job. It was seen as a betrayal by his former party, who turned on him. That's what makes the attack on Gillard for being sexist even more egregious - Abbott was attacking her for supporting a former member of *his* party, not hers!
Overall, I just think Gillard is a poor example of tokenism. I completely agree with Gladwell that she was the victim of sexism - absolutely outrageous sexism. She was hyper-competent in office and the way she was treated by the Australian media and people in general was appalling. But it wasn't about people patting themselves on the back, it was about people resenting the fact that she was there at all. I think Margaret Thatcher is a much better example of tokenism, but as her time in office was so long ago and she's passed away, I imagine the interview tape wouldn't have been so compelling.
Good start, engaging.
I enjoyed the narration and the narrative. I applaud an author who engages a subject such as gender equality from both a historical and modern perspective. Sadly a 50 minute podcast is a short time for such an expansive topic.
On Julia Gillard: being an Australian who voted Labor I was less than impressed with her manouvering to oust Kevin Rudd. However; on the topic of how she was treated by Tony Abbott and the vastly conservative media, it has to be said it was embarrassing. Devastatingly painful for Ms Gillard; biased and crude media and opposition taunts made many Australians cringe.
All the same, I look forward to the next episode!
Revisionist history indeed!
I admire Gladwell and his significant body of work, but the first episode of this series is sprinkled with factual inaccuracies, bias and gross characterizations. Apply salt liberally prior to consumption.