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Revisionist History

Malcolm Gladwell / Panoply

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 Panoply Media. Because sometimes the past deserves a second chance.

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McDonald’s Broke My Heart

Aug 10th, 201733:03

They made the world’s greatest French Fry. Then they threw it away.Revisionist History is presented by Blue Apron and Zip Recruiter.

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A landmark Supreme Court case. A civil rights revolution. Why has everyone forgotten what happened next?Revisionist History is presented by Chanel. Discover the story of Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel on inside.chanel.com.

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A Good Walk Spoiled

Jun 15th, 201733:54

Rich people and their addiction to golf: a philosophical investigation. Revisionist History is presented by Chanel. Discover the story of Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel on inside.chanel.com.

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Q: Was there a period where you felt you had something to prove? A: The first 45 years of my life. 

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The Basement Tapes

Aug 17th, 201730:44

What is a son’s obligation to his father? Revisionist History is presented by Blue Apron and Zip Recruiter.

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“Oh, Mac. What did you do?”Revisionist History is presented by Chanel. Discover the story of Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel on inside.chanel.com.

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"Sorry dude, I don't remember you being on my aircraft."

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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.

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The friendship that changed the course of World War II. Revisionist History is presented by Chanel. Discover the story of Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel on inside.chanel.com.

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Arrested, arraigned, indicted, tried, convicted, and sentenced to die in the electric chair in 24 hours.Revisionist History is presented by Blue Apron and Zip Recruiter.

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State v Johnson

Jul 27th, 201731:15

“Nobody was interested in justice.”Revisionist History is presented by Blue Apron and Zip Recruiter.

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The King of Tears

Jul 20th, 201741:33

Why country music makes you cry, and rock and roll doesn’t: A musical interpretation of divided America. Revisionist History is presented by Blue Apron and Zip Recruiter.

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The Road to Damascus

Jun 22nd, 201739:50

What happens when a terrorist has a change of heart?Revisionist History is presented by Chanel. Discover the story of Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel on inside.chanel.com.

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The Satire Paradox

Aug 18th, 201637:26

In the political turmoil of mid-1990s Britain, a brilliantyoung comic named Harry Enfield set out to satirize the ideology and politicsof Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. His parodies became famous. He wrote andperformed a vicious sendup of the typical Thatcherite nouveau riche buffoon. Peopleloved it. And what happened? Exactly the opposite of what Enfield hoped wouldhappen. In an age dominated by political comedy, “The Satire Paradox”asks whether laughter and socialprotest are friends or foes.  To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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Hallelujah

Jul 28th, 201636:22

How does genius emerge? An exploration of different types of innovation—through the lens of Elvis Costello’s extraordinary song “Deportee,” once utterly forgettable and then, through time and iteration, a work of beauty and genius. If you're looking to go deeper into the subjects on Revisionist History, visit Malcolm's collection on iBooks at http://www.apple.co/MalcolmGladwell -- iBooks will update the page every week with new recommendations. To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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The Big Man Can't Shoot

Jun 30th, 201634:56

Wilt Chamberlain’s brilliant career was marred by one, deeply inexplicable decision: He chose a shooting technique that made him one of the worst foul shooters in basketball—even though he had tried a better alternative. Why do smart people do dumb things? To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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Crucial life lessons from the end of hockey games, Idris Elba, and some Wall Street guys with a lot of time on their hands.

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Divide and Conquer

May 17th41:21

The complete, unabridged history of the world’s most controversial semicolon. 

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Generous Orthodoxy

Aug 11th, 201632:46

A 98-year-old minister takes on his church over the subject of gay marriage—and teaches the rest of us what it means to stand up in protest. To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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Carlos Doesn’t Remember

Jul 7th, 201633:26

Of the tens of thousands of talented, low-income students who graduate from high school every year in the United States, most never make it to universities appropriate to their gifts. America leaves an enormous amount of talent on the table every year. “Carlos Doesn’t Remember” explains why. To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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Saigon, 1965

Jun 23rd, 201640:56

In the early 1960s the Pentagon set up a top-secret research project in an old villa in downtown Saigon. The task? To interview captured North Vietnamese soldiers and guerrillas in order to measure the effect of relentless U.S. bombing on their morale. Yet despite a wealth of great data, even the leaders of the study couldn’t agree on what it meant. To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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The Lady Vanishes

Jun 16th, 201633:39

In the late 19th century, a painting titled The Roll Call, by a virtually unknown artist, took England by storm. But after that brilliant first effort, the artist all but disappeared. Why? And what does The Roll Call tell us about the fate of those first through the door? To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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“She was Joan of Arc, Madame Curie, and Florence Nightingale—all wrapped up in one.”

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Epidemics of fear repeat themselves. The first time as tragedy. The second time as farce. Margit Hamosh? Definitely farce. 

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From bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell, season two of Revisionist History launches June 15th.

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Blame Game

Aug 4th, 201637:37

In the summer and fall of 2009, hundreds of Toyota owners came forward with an alarming allegation: Their cars were suddenly and uncontrollably accelerating. Toyota was forced to recall 10 million vehicles, pay a fine of more than $1 billion, and settle countless lawsuits. The consensus was that there was something badly wrong with the world’s most popular cars. Except that there wasn’t. What happens when hysteria overtakes common sense? To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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My Little Hundred Million

Jul 21st, 201638:55

In the early ’90s, Hank Rowan gave $100 million to a tiny public university in Glassboro, New Jersey: not Harvard, not Yale, not even to his alma mater, MIT. What was Rowan thinking? And why has it proven so difficult for other philanthropists to follow his lead? To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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Food Fight

Jul 14th, 201629:57

Bowdoin College and Vassar College are two elite private schools that compete for the same students. But one of those schools is trying hard to address the problem of rich and poor in American society—and paying a high price. The other is making that problem worse—and reaping rewards as a result. To learn more about the topics covered in this episode, visit www.RevisionistHistory.com

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Malcolm Gladwell talks to three songwriters who helped transform country music in the 1970s. Gone were cowboy hats, train whistles and church suppers. In came songs about desperation, loss, changes, and regret that changed how Nashville made music and spoke to a new generation of audiences. Bobby Braddock, Don Schlitz and Don Henry talk about their influences, trade stories, and play acoustic versions of their classic hits.

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Revisionist History listeners will remember Bobby Braddock as "The King of Tears" from season two, when he told Malcolm the story behind his hit, He Stopped Loving Her Today. Bobby also appeared as a guest in the final episode of season three, "Analysis, Parapraxis, Elvis."This week on Broken Record, Malcolm Gladwell talks to Bobby Braddock, Don Schlitz, and Don Henry, songwriters who helped transform country music in the 1970s. Gone were cowboy hats, train whistles and church suppers. In came songs about desperation, loss, changes, and regret that changed how Nashville made music and spoke to a new generation of audiences. Braddock, Schlitz, and Henry talk about their influences, trade stories, and play acoustic versions of their classic hits.

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Rick Rubin

Nov 13th48:58

Revisionist History presents the first episode of a new podcast, Broken Record. It's a conversation between Rick Rubin and Revisionist History host Malcolm Gladwell, covering everything from Rick’s role in the very beginning of hip-hop to his role in introducing Johnny Cash to a new generation of writers, performers and music lovers. Rick and Malcolm delve deep into Rick’s back catalogue – which is really a history of contemporary music – to reveal more about the artists that defined a new era, and why they are still vital listening today.

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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. Revisionist History will be airing the first episode of Broken Record on November 13th. Listen here or in the Broken Record feed.

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Analysis, Parapraxis, Elvis

Jul 19th55:27

The one song The King couldn’t sing. 

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Good fences make good neighbors. Or maybe not.

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A Polite Word for Liar

May 31st39:40

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?

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Burden of Proof

May 24th36:04

“He called to wish me ‘Happy Birthday.’ Then he said, ‘I’m failing everything.’”

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Malcolm Gladwell is back with season three of Revisionist History: harmonica players, mass delusion, semicolons, and a constitutional crisis. Launching May 17th on Panoply.

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Introducing Revisionist History

Jun 3rd, 20163:11

Coming soon, a new podcast series from bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell.

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