by NPR
All Genres #144History #9

The past is never past. Every headline has a history. Join us every week as we go back in time to understand the present. These are stories you can feel and sounds you can see from the moments that shaped our world.

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Recent Reviews
  • em-azing12
    Interesting but poor editing
    The audio quality can be very poor. The background noises are often distracting and the interviews/audio snippets are conducted at different volume levels, which means you cannot always understand what people are saying. Some episodes are incredibly interesting and enlightening, but I’m unsubscribing because of the poor editing.
  • Drarnest
    House Music vs EDM stipidity
    I don’t understand why you would try to paint EDM and its spread into the main culture as a concern or issue. This lifestyle, including house, music, EDM, sub genres such as drum and bass, or techno or trance, are all inclusive. Credit has always been given to where it came from just like rock ‘n’ roll, and just like any other music genre. The people in this culture are all inclusive and accept you for whoever you are. To make it out like it’s taken over by white DJs is totally against the whole culture. Is it not OK other people to create or modify music? When I go to the shows, it’s all about love, no matter who you are, what are you, your exotic background, or whatever. It’s all love guys… the race baiting has to stop… this just gives ammo to the conservatives and Trumpsters that hate the freedom to be you! Cant we all just get along???
  • CTNJ87
    Thank You from a House Head
    Such a brilliant episode tracing the cultural history of house music! As a metro NYC house head who was raised on disco, it was inspiring to hear that the roots of house music are being honored and preserved. Like blues, jazz, and rock & roll before it, house music is Black music and by historical extension, American music. Well done throughline team! That’s the way to throw your baby powder on the floor and move your body!
  • shlemoney
    I love Throughline!
    I love and respect this podcast SO MUCH. I recommend it to everyone I can. On an individual level it has reinvigorated my curiosity and on an interpersonal level has reinvigorated my desire to think about and explore topics that matter with others. I love that through this podcast gives unsung heroes their flowers. I love how this podcast tells parts of our human history that otherwise might not be documented and widely shared. Thank you, Throughline team for doing what you do.
  • Lattie.4355
    I like it. It helps me a lot in my life
  • beckytelecky
    Be punk rock!
    “What if optimism is actually what’s punk rock” we’ve been saying this at my house for a while now, thanks Throughline!
  • klacusky
    show has kind of lost the plot!
    agree with other reviewers that the earlier episodes about clear cut topics were better and more accurate. in the last two years it’s definitely taken on a weird aura of nihilistic hero vs villain, virtue vs evil narratives that are applied to the historical events in a one-size-fits-all way.
  • Boo Scoot
    Podcast music
    Really like the Podcast. It is excellent. But the music is awful. Harsh and distracting.
  • A Avram
    Fails to Meet Its Potential
    Often bites off more than it can chew. Early episodes were more targeted on discrete topics, allowing for a deeper and balanced understanding of the topics. I’ve grown disenchanted with the show taking on grand and existential topics that are impossible to do justice to in short episodes. Moreover, the show is reductionist often presenting topics as a binary - poor v elite - and always concluding with the romantic or Disney-esque perspective.
  • Chilistructure
    American health care system episode was great
    This is one of the most amazing ones. It really shows how entrenched interests have derailed efforts to create a rational and affordable health care system at every opportunity, and how a temporary fix can become permanent.
  • Emboskwembo
    Always enlightening
    Amazingly well researched, riveting topics, and performed like a radio play at times. Always a pleasure to listen!
  • 1-Cagumo
    Hello everyone! New phone try this pod- cast
  • Lara_M_NJ
    Best podcast ever!
    Explains the present by looking at the past. Super enlightening. Makes you think about your actions… that they can have consequences tens or hundreds of years down the road. Gives you ideas on how we might reverse or redirect some of the troubling trajectories we’ve put ourselves on. :) Thank so much for this show! Great job guys!
  • RVC-FR
    Worthy of your time!
    What an amazing podcast! The thorough descriptions and explanations are incredible. The hosts do an amazing job! My only recommendation would be to once in a while find a positive/uplifting topic/story. But this podcast is a worthy listen 🎧.
  • dextex xuxu
    OK but could be better
    This podcast is more interested in telling appealing stories (generally accompanied by simplistic depictions of some characters as good and others as bad) than with attempting to reconstruct history in its complexity, irony, and paradox. (For comparison, see the BBC’s outstanding “In Our Time” episodes about history, which give an outline as what happened but also discuss the interpretive disagreements among experts. For example the IOT show on the US-Mexican War is outstanding and manages to avoid being US-centric.) Throughline is also too “presentist,” and is more concerned with attempting to change how US listeners think about current events than it is with treating the past in a more objective fashion that acknowledges it doesn’t fit neatly into our current debates, which frequently involve the misuse of history by polemicists on both the right and the left. That being said, there are some very good episodes based on the work of solid historians, and these episodes have considerable merit (it should be added that all the episodes have excellent technical production). But the bad episodes can be very bad. The episode on astrology, cites two works by people who are pro-astrology and gives no airtime to any scholars who treat the subject in an intellectually rigorous manner, such as an astrophysicist, a legitimate historian (whose work is peer reviewed), or a social psychologist (who could explain why so many humans believe in paranormal phenomena) might have. The episode on the 1953 coup in Iran, while not as horrible as the one on astrology, features Stephen Kinzer, who is a journalist out to sell his popular history books, and the unreliable account of self-glorifying CIA agent Kermit Roosevelt. Many solid scholars have worked on the 1953 coup; why not feature them and their disputes more prominently? Both of these episodes are extremely US-centric, neglecting the global dimensions of astrology and the Iranian aspects of the 1953 coup. I don’t want this show cancelled (we need more good history podcasts!), but it would be great if it were better informed of the debates among academic scholars.
  • kylecryer
    Misleading History
    Loved this podcast and thought I was learning a ton… then I heard a completely untrue account of events I know very well. I looked deeper and it turns out it’s just one sided propaganda.
  • jeremy_638527
    Selective History
    This show picks and chooses pieces of history to tell unfair and completely biased stories around the world. Incredibly obvious anti Israel bias. Extremely reductive explanation of global history ignoring complex relationships between actors in each countries government.
  • RedHandReiver
    NPR showing its bias
    If you want a very left leaning propaganda podcast then this is for you. If you want a more balanced perspective then look elsewhere.
  • audibleloss
    Learn a lot
    I enjoy the podcast, but find the background music distracting. The information and writing is enough to carry the episodes.
  • suliamanabdul
    Changed My Perspective: A Neutral Balanced Podcast
    I have always yearned for a podcast that reports history and it’s causal effect in a human non-biased way. I hope one day that when someone becomes curious, instead of pulling out their phone and googling their question, a podcast suddenly starts by Thruline as soon as the question comes to mind.
  • rebecca749294759
    Engaging & Informative
    Quite possibly the best sound design I’ve ever heard on a podcast of this genre. Really helps bring the information to life. Fantastic work!
  • Mace47744
    Love everything BUT the CONSTANT, DRIVING, ANNOYING music?
    First off, I LOVE this show. The facts, figures, historical context, varied cultural specific windows into the unknown are just some of the most wonderful parts. The part that I have such a struggle with is the somehow deemed “dramatization” of all of the conflict surrounded dialogue. You don’t need this. It is disturbing and draws away from the already solid writing. Please stop. Many thanks Rachel
  • T-Lur
    Keep up the good work folks!
  • Sidney.W.
    My weekly podcast I go to
    I love this show. I learn so much about how we got to the places we are today. I look for new episodes every week, and if I can’t find one, I go and listen to an old episode from years before.
  • Edaneast
    Thoughtful informative
    This is my number one podcast. I have saved more of these episodes to re-listen than any other podcast I follow. I am grateful for a whole world view and whole world history. I appreciate the perspectives and knowledge shared in this podcast. As for the two hosts, they are so easy to listen to and feel the present knowledge in a respectful way. People I would welcome to know. I have gained so much from this podcast and the hosts.
  • spiritual reminders
    I always learn something
    I challenge you to listen and not learn something. And learn it in a fun way. Thank you Throughline!
  • HopefulSil
    Started out great! But why are there are so many repeats? I look forward to a new show weekly not really here for playing previous episodes over and over again
  • zxxcb.
    Sesame Street
    THROUGH LINE is my go to Podcast that consistently expands my intellectual curiosity questioning and expanding my world. Thank you. Buffy Saint-Marie is the first Indigenous woman who was on Sesame Street for 6 seasons . She was married then pregnant giving birth to her son Cody. Breastfeeding (a TV first) was explained to Big Bird. I was very disappointed none of this was discussed. Perhaps you should expand your inclusivity better when discussing such a great educational Public Broadcasting program. KF- Albuquerque, NM
  • raggedy11
    Great show!
    Consistently the best podcast I listen to each week!
  • Reyoktam
    Love this show, and love the Sesame St. Episode
    My parents learned English along with me and my sister. We knew English when we got to school because of this show. Loved to hear the whole story behind the show.
  • pualanastyle
    Deep dives worth sinking your ears into
    Just absolutely love these podcasts, I learn so much about what are often not well known, and find a listen also very therapeutic to winding down from the day!
  • Cordybrown
    Good concept but falls short.
    Its reminiscent to me of shows produced and hosted by high school students on our local station. The hosts’ perspective seems from a very young and naive place. Shallow The comments on tne production quality are spot on. Music too loud. Pace not right. I fast forward a lot Gave it a try for s few months off and on, I wanted to like it . but …moving on.
  • Agonist2
    Lacks nuance and humility
    Great sound and audio production on interesting topics. However, it lacks the true humility and recognition of the many component factors that shape an event. Instead they bring one or two guests on with a narrow minded view on what shaped history. The information is presented in cause and effect cause and effect, while in reality there are many causes that may have a large or small impact on an event, but we will never know the exact amount for each. And to make matters more narrow they present definite conclusions with 100% confidence when in reality we will never know exactly why in most cases. The whole show is a far cry from the wisdom and humility of Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History.
  • MusicCat
    Excellent show
    Terrific reporting about various fascinating topics. A very intelligent show. Thank you!
  • bobhunt421
    Very bias opinions
    If you enjoy Listening to ppls left wing bias opinions then this is the station for you 🤪
  • Sizemore24
    Inflation defined in 2 words
    Joe Biden … boom 🤯
  • sn4home
    Enjoyable storytelling and learning
    I have been listening to your podcast for years, Rand, Ramtin, and team. I love it. The dots you connect helps more easily digest some of the most complicated and relevant topics of our times. You have a fantastic team. Keep up the great work and continue to inspire listeners like me to be curious!
  • kaoskittens
    Engaging history podcast!!
    I share episodes with friends and family often right after I listen to an episode that has completely shifted and informed my thinking. It answers the question how did we get here?
  • Romy3d
    AMAZING podcast
    If I could give a ten star review, I would. This is easily my favorite podcast. I can’t recommend it enough! So. Good. (Also sending thanks for making it clear which episodes are repeats! That was my only previous complaint)
  • buttbunk
    A through lesson
    This podcast is so great a telling the whole story to help you understand politics and how history effects society today.
  • Jaygyygggyy
    Not consistent
    Production is great but not consistent, often leans too far left on political subjects. I like the subjects that aren’t based on hot topic political issues. Focus more on historical, non biased subjects.
  • CarlaSalehian
    I have recommended this podcast to so many people and they love it as well. It goes deep into the history of the subject they are dealing with n a manner that is easy to understand
  • highclassdirtbag
    I've learned so much
    Keep up the great work guys, I tell everyone about your podcast!
  • wgittwb
    Why not interview any of the Med Students held hostage? The Cuban backed Commies execute the entire government why wouldn’t they execute the Students?
  • Cannot enter a nickname
    Content is interesting but stop the intrusive music.
    The episode is overproduced. The music is too much. The content can stand on its own.
  • IwannaBnice
    Throughline does as its name implies.
    The podcast does an excellent job of describing in a plausible, well written and seemingly well documented story of how we got from here to there. On several occasions I fact checkedSome thing and easily found a minimum of three sources in agreement
  • KLewis to Pau
    Just found this gem
    I’ve listened to NRP since 1982, currently listen to several NPR podcasts, but just discovered this one. It’s along the line of ‘the rest of the story’. I am watching Apple’s Tehran series and wanting to know more about Iran and it’s interactions with other countries and I found 2 stories on Throughline, giving me some great background and tying together some threads of info I’ve learned over the years. I just started a paid subscription and am really excited to listen to more!
  • Jorge2169
    Perfectly documented and narrated.
  • Che Block
    Vietnam war
    You’re getting hit call wrong No one understood the Vietnam war The protesters were against the war and the draft and not the veterans The right came up with this nonsense about it being about the veterans to cover their tracks
  • JH_MI
    Great content and production
    I enjoy the stories and perspectives that consider how we all can live in a better way with each other.
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