Since Labor Day, I’ve been listening to two podcasts to the exclusion of all others: The History of Rome and Revolutions. They’re both by the same guy, and they’re highly entertaining and informative. And timely. Given the state of U.S. politics and the 2016 Election, it seems apropos that I have this sudden interest in learning about historical violent overhauls of civilizations. Turns out the history of Rome was nothing but one bloody coup and civil war after another (like, they probably averaged a civil war every six years), despite Roman civilization lasting almost a millennia.* And Revolutions? As an arbitrary starting point in the history of the world, the English Civil War never really ended–it’s just been relocating to a different country every few years.**
So check these two podcasts out. The History of Rome is done–no more episodes–but there are almost 200 episodes to listen to. Revolutions is in its fifth season now with over 100 episodes and more on the way.
* If we took out the campaigns of genocide against the Jews (which was kind of standard issue for Roman emperors post the first century BCE), then I’d have to say I’m a big fan of Hadrian.
** Season three of Revolutions covers the French Revolution. I knew nothing about the French Revolution except that Bastille Day is kind of a big deal in France which, via the transitive property, means I’m a big deal in France. My big takeaway from the whole thing though? I’m shocked France wasn’t successful in guillotining the entire population’s heads off. Seriously, it’s a miracle their population survived Robespierre and the Reign of Terror.***
*** This, people. This is what we’re fighting against in November when we vote for Hillary.