Early America was a diverse place. It contained many different people who had many different traditions that informed how they lived…and died.
How did early Americans understand death? What did they think about suicide?
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, Terri Snyder, a Professor of American Studies at California State University, Fullerton and author of The Power to Die: Slavery and Suicide in British North America (University of Chicago Press, 2015), helps us answer these questions and more as she takes us on an exploration of slavery and suicide in British North America. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/125
What did the American Revolution mean and achieve? What sort of liberty and freedom did independence grant Americans and which Americans should receive them?
Americans grappled with these questions soon after the American Revolution. They debated these issues during the Constitutional Convention of 1787, in the first congresses, and as they followed events in revolutionary France and Haiti during the 1790s and early 1800s.
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, James Alexander Dun, an Assistant Professor of History at Princeton University and author of Dangerous Neighbors: Making the Haitian Revolution in Early America (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2016), joins us to explore the ways the Haitian Revolution shaped how Americans viewed their own revolution. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/124
In December 1773, the Cape Cod Tea Crisis revealed that the people of “radical” Massachusetts were far from united in their support for the American Revolution. An observation that leads us to wonder: How many Americans supported the Patriot cause?
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, we speak with four scholars to explore the complexities of political allegiance during the American Revolution. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/123
Did the Americans win the War for Independence? Or did the British simply lose the war?
The history of the American War for Independence is complicated. And history books tell many different versions of the event, which is why we need an expert to guide us through the intricacies of whether we should look at the war as an American victory, a British defeat, or in some other light.
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, Andrew O’Shaughnessy, author of The Men Who Lost America: British Leadership, the American Revolution, and the Fate of the Empire (Yale University Press, 2013) joins us to explore British viewpoints of the American War for Independence. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/122
The Spanish, French, and English played large roles in the origins of colonial America. But so too did the Dutch. During the 17th century, they had a “moment” in which they influenced European colonization and development of the Atlantic World.
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, Wim Klooster, a Professor of History at Clark University and author of The Dutch Moment: War, Trade, and Settlement in the Seventeenth Century Atlantic World (Cornell University Press, 2016), guides us through Dutch contributions to the Atlantic World. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/121
How do you build colonies without women?
Most of the colonial adventurers from England and France who set out for Jamestown, New France, and colonial Louisiana were men. But how do you build and sustain societies and spread European culture—in essence, fulfill the promises of a colonial program—without women?
You can’t. Which is why Marcia Zug, a Professor of Law at the University of South Carolina Law School and author of Buying a Bride: An Engaging History of Mail Order Matches (NYUPress, 2016), joins us in this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast to explore one of the solutions that England and France used to build their North American colonies: mail order bride programs. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/120
On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia moved that the Second Continental Congress resolve “that these United Colonies are, and of right out to be, free and independent States…”
The Second Continental Congress adopted Lee’s motion and on June 11, 1776, it appointed a committee to draft a declaration of independence.
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, Steve Pincus, the Bradford Durfee Professor of History at Yale University and author of The Heart of the Declaration: The Founders’ Case for an Activist Government (Yale University Press, 2016), leads us on an investigation of the Declaration of Independence and the context in which the founders drafted it. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/119
How did the smallest colony and smallest state in the union became the largest American participant in the slave trade?
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, Christy Clark-Pujara, an Assistant Professor in the Department of African-American Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and author of Dark Work: The Business of Slavery in Rhode Island (NYUPress, 2016), joins us to explore the history of Rhode Island and New England’s involvement with slavery.
You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/118
Thomas Jefferson wrote about liberty and freedom and yet owned over six hundred slaves during his lifetime.
He’s a founder who many of us have a hard time understanding. This is why we need an expert to lead us through his life, so we can better understand who Jefferson was and how he came to his seemingly paradoxical ideas about slavery and freedom.
In this episode of the Ben Franklin’s World podcast, Annette Gordon-Reed, a professor of history and legal history at Harvard University and the winner of the National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize for her work on Thomas Jefferson and the Hemings Family, leads us on an exploration through the life and ideas of Thomas Jefferson. You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/117
When we think of the French and Indian, or Seven Years’ War, we often think of battles: The Monongahela, Ticonderoga, Québec. Yet, wars aren’t just about battles. They’re about people and governments too.
In this episode of Ben Franklin’s World: A Podcast About Early American History, we explore a very different aspect of the French and Indian or Seven Years’ War. We explore the war through the lens of disease and medicine and how disease prompted the British government to take steps to keep its soldiers healthy.
Our guide for this investigation is Erica Charters, an Associate Professor of the History of Medicine at the University of Oxford and author of Disease, War, and the Imperial State: The Welfare of British Armed Forces during the Seven Years’ War (University of Chicago Press, 2014). You can listen to the podcast here: www.benfranklinsworld.com/116