In college I was a campus tour guide and even then had an inkling of the JTBD. While the training consisted of learning dates and statistics, the visitors wanted to know questions about ‘What it was like to be a student here?’.
Historical podcasts offer a similar idea. Rather than precision, it’s appreciation. I don’t remember much from high school or college history, but thanks to historical podcasts, I have some sense of the world. Much like the History through industry books, these are some recent favorites.
1760s The hero of two worlds, The Marquis de Lafayette. My daughters’s favorite character from Hamilton had quite the life experiences, truly a ‘skin in the game’ character. Washington considered him a son, and Lafayette named one of his sons Georges Washington. And it pairs well with…
1790s The Napoleonic Wars featuring Dr. Alexander Mikaberidze. Subtitle, you can’t do just one thing. Following France’s help in the American Revolution was France’s financial debts. This is a strong two hours about the life of Napoleon, his lucky breaks and the world that was kinda set up for someone like him.
1900s Sears Historian Jerry Hancock. Sears is nice to study because it spans a few retail periods: mail delivery catalogs and railroads, urbanization and city center, then stores and suburban malls. This interview is mostly about Sears’s connection to Atlanta.
1939 The start of WWII with Dan Snow. Like the French Revolution, a bunch of factors ‘lined up’. In both cases, one major factor was the economic conditions.
1940s The teenage communist hit squad of the Netherlands. A group of teenage girls are recruited to find (seduce?) inebriated German officers in local bars, convince them to go to the woods, and shoot them in the head. One member, was Hannie Schaft (Wikipedia).
1962 The Cuban Missile Crisis from Dan Carlin. This is one I listen to each October. Also, The Tunnel documentary on a handful of college students digging a tunnel from west to east Germany to help rescue their friends.
Have a suggestions? Let me know!