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The Road to Now

Bob Crawford (The Avett Brothers) & Dr. Ben Sawyer (MTSU History) share conversations with great thinkers from a variety of backgrounds – historians, artists, legal scholars, political figures and more –who help us uncover the many roads that run between past and present. For more information, visit TheRoadToNow.com If you'd like to support our work, join us on Patreon: Patreon.com/TheRoadToNow
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Now displaying: July, 2021
Jul 26, 2021

Bob and Ben speak with Jon Waterlow about his book It’s Only a Joke Comrade! Humor, Trust and Everyday Life Under Stalin and the role humor plays in helping humans make sense of the world in even the darkest times. Jon also shares his take on humor’s role in politics under Stalin and today, the process he went through to uncover these jokes, and how the artistic technique of crosshatching helps us understand what it was like to live under the Stalinist system. He also discusses his decision to forego publishing his book with an academic publisher and why he decided to leave a bright future in the academy to purse fulfillment elsewhere.

Dr. Jonathan Waterlow received his Doctorate in History from the University of Oxford and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at St. Anthony’s College (Oxford) and the University of Toronto. He is also the cohost of the Voices in the Dark podcast, which is available anywhere you get The Road to Now.

This episode is a rebroadcast of The Road to Now #107 and was edited by Gary Fletcher.

Jul 19, 2021

Millions of people from across the globe visit Los Angeles every year, but only a lucky few have gotten a tour of the city from tour guides/stand up comics, Rivers Langley, Anna Valenzuela & Carter Glascock. In this episode, Ben speaks with Rivers, Carter and Anna about their favorite stories from Los Angeles’ history, what it’s like to work as a tour guide, and what makes a good (and bad) day at work.

For images and links to other material discussed in this episode, visit our website episode page: RTNpod.me/202.

Carter Glascock is stand up comic and co-host of The Goods From The Woods Podcast. His first album, The Crystal Pistol is available on Spotify and Apple Music. You can follow him on twitter at @carter_glascock.

Rivers Langley is a LA-based stand-up comedian and host of The Goods From The Woods Podcast. You can also find him announcing the matches at Wrestling Pro Wrestling. You can follow him on twitter at @RiversLangley.

Anna Valenzuela is a comic, writer and host of the podcast 12 Questions. whose appearances include Comedy Central’s Roast Battle.  You can follow her on twitter at @annavisfun.

This episode was mixed by Rivers Langley and edited by Gary Fletcher.

The Road to Now is part of the Osiris Podcast Network.

Jul 12, 2021

Three generations ago, large American corporations offered their employees the stability of life-long employment and the promise of a pension-funded retirement. In the 21st Century, that model has given way to the "gig economy" in which people work multiple jobs. In this episode, Bob and Ben speak with Cornell University’s Louis Hyman about the forces that led us from then to now, what it means for our daily lives, and  how we might structure the economy of the 21st century in a way that offers the freedom of the gig economy without the insecurity that so many face under our current institutions.

Dr. Louis Hyman is a historian of work and business at the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University, where he also directs the Institute for Workplace Studies in New York City. His book Temp: How American Work, American Business, and the American Dream Became Temporary was published by Viking in 2018.

This is a broadcast of an episode that originally aired on The Road to Now on August 20, 2018. This re-broadcast was edited by Gary Fletcher.

The Road to Now is part of the Osiris Podcast Network.

Jul 5, 2021

Game shows have been featured in network lineups from the very beginning of television and, like all forms of entertainment, they tell us a lot about the culture in which they exist. Fortunately for us, The Strong Museum of Play recently announced the establishment of The National Archives of Game Show History to preserve this history and make it available to the public. In this episode Ben speaks with archive co-founder and veteran game show producer/executive Bob Boden (The Price is Right, $25,000 Pyramid, Funny You Should Ask!) and Strong Museum Vice President of Acquisitions, Chris Bensch, to learn more about their work to preserve this history and how an archive focused on game shows can be valuable for those looking to understand the past.

For more about The Strong Museum of Play, visit their website: MuseumOfPlay.org.

Check out Bob Boden’s current show, Funny You Should Ask! at FunnyYouShouldAsk.tv.

This episode was edited by Gary Fletcher.

The Road to Now is part of the Osiris Podcast Network.

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