Hi, I'm David Plouffe. And I'm Steve Schmidt. We're the hosts of Battleground, a new podcast from the recount. In 2008, I ran Senator John McCain's campaign for president David. Man, Senator Obama's in battleground.
We're going state by state and giving you in-depth reporting on the Trump and Biden strategies. So did you understand what they're doing and more importantly, why they're doing it?
Listen, the battleground on the I Heart radio app, Apple podcast, or wherever you get your podcast, this is the Secret Syllabus podcast.
I remember the good old times when I was a college student and then 20/20 hit. Hi, I'm Hannah Ashton. And I'm Katie Tracy. We're here to fill in everything they missed in our college curriculum, just like you were confronting the unknown.
And if we're being honest, we need all the advice we can get.
Listen to the secret syllabus on the I Heart radio app, Apple podcast or wherever you get your podcasts. See you after class. Welcome to stuff you missed in History Class, A production of I Heart Radio. Hello and welcome to the podcast, I'm Tracy Wilson, and I'm Holly Fry. It's time for a six impossible episodes if you are new to the show. Every once in a while, we do an episode where we cover six topics that for one reason or another, we can't really do in a full length episode.
This used to happen about every six months, but I just didn't have six things conveniently.
Sometimes this is because there's not enough information for a whole episode for a particular topic, or maybe because taken together, all the topics as a group kind of tell a story. We've done a few of these in which the subjects are just so similar to other episodes that we've already done that it almost feels like historical deja vu. So there's lots of different reasons that we go with this format. Sometimes we are calling today's Episode Six Impossible episodes. There's a book about that because these are episodes that we would love to do as a full length episode.
And in some cases we've gotten listener requests and sometimes a lot of listener requests. But there's a book like one book that is so central to the subject that the book is really the place to go for the information rather than our podcast. Yeah, Tracy and I have talked about these before and it's like at that point, are we just doing a book report? Yeah, yeah.
So first we're going to kick off with William Dorcy Swan. And before we get to the topic that inspired today's episode, we also wanted to quickly recap how we research and write the show. Typically, we record two episodes a week with each of us researching and writing one of them. Our research processes are similar, but not identical. We have each figured out what works best for us over the years, and it's a little different for Tracy versus me.
But regardless of which of us is researching or what topic we're doing, we are drawing in information from multiple sources and we're synthesizing that into an outline that we have written ourselves. So even if there's one source that's doing some heavy lifting in that process, there are also lots of other ones that we're using to fill in gaps and confirm details and provide multiple perspectives on the subject. But for the topics that we're talking about today, as I mentioned earlier, there's just really one book that would provide almost all of the in-depth research.
The basics might be out there in the world through multiple sources, but not the deeper details. So either the author did all the research to write the first ever book on a subject, or maybe they translated a work into English for the first time or like did some analysis that's just become an irreplaceable part of our understanding of the topic.
Number one, those authors and historians really deserve the focus and the credit for having done all of that work, because if you are the one person researching a book, you're doing so much footwork if it is not previously established research. And number two, if we tried to just summarize that one work into an episode, well, as we just said, that's that's a book report or that's the best case scenario. The worst case scenario is that it kind of verges on plagiarism.
In some cases, trying to distill a unique original work down to a 30 or 40 minute episode just feels a little bit incongruous with what our process is and kind of our our mission for the show.
Yeah, sometimes when we say that to folks, they say we'll just have the author on. We do have authors and historians on the show to talk about their books, but most of the time those books are newly released. And so they're coming on to the show as part of their publicity work for the book. Usually we have either met the author before or we've gotten some kind of publicity email from the publisher, or maybe we have a contact with the publisher that we can ask.
I'm not saying it's impossible to get an author on the show without any of that, but I have for sure gone down some real and very unsuccessful rabbit holes trying to track folks down. This is not a solicitation for advice on how to do it here.
If you're about to say, why don't you just tweet at them? Well, that's the thing that we've tried before, hasn't necessarily worked out well. Yeah, I promise. We do know how to reach out to people. Sometimes it is not fruitful. And this brings us to the topic that inspired today's episode, which is actually a forthcoming book. But it's one that we have gotten so many requests for over the last few months, thanks to some post that have gone viral.
And as I mentioned earlier, it is William Dorsey SWANE.
So 15 years ago, Channing Gerrard Joseph was taking a class in investigative reporting at Columbia University and stumbled over the name William Dorsey Suan in an old Washington Post article. When We Say Old, this article was dated April 13th, 1888, and the headline read, quote, Negro Dive raided 13 black men. Dressed as women, surprised at supper and arrested William Dorcy Swan, who called himself a queen of drag and was known as just the queen, was among them.
Joseph wrote an article about Swan that was published in The Nation in January of Twenty Twenty, which seems to have been the information source for various viral posts that have circulated since then, catching listeners attention and leading to a lot of episode requests.
And yes, Swan absolutely seems up our alley. He sounds fascinating. He was enslaved from birth and then went on to be a huge part of the drag scene in Washington, DC after the US Civil War, he tried to get a pardon from President Grover Cleveland in the first documented legal action to protect LGBTQ rights in the United States. Swan story really touches on so many things, including the history of drag balls, gender, race, cross-dressing and trans history.
But the book does not exist yet. Once it does, we are hoping folks go to read it. We are for sure looking forward to doing that.
That forthcoming book based on Joseph's original research into William Dorcy Swan is titled House of Swan, Where Slaves Became Queens, and at present it is expected from Crown, that's a subsidiary of Penguin Random House to publish in the US in 2021. And from Picador, that's Macmillan in the UK. Yeah, I would say it might. I don't know if it's optimistic or not that it will be out in twenty twenty one. I know the pandemic has totally shifted every public publishing schedules and I also know that I have had this one particular book on my list to try to to get in touch with the author.
And it's like noted in my little list and it originally said forthcoming in twenty nineteen and then it said forthcoming in twenty twenty and now it's as forthcoming in twenty twenty one. So book deadlines and timelines can shift around sometimes. Just so folks know, we've gotten so many requests about him. Yes, he does sound completely fascinating and hopefully in the future, a book to read. Next up is the one topic that we're talking about today that I don't actually think we have gotten specific requests from listeners about.
And this is Ethiopian saint with a lot of Petro's. So as we talked about in our episode on The Rockhound Churches of Lalibela, Christianity was established and what's now Ethiopia. During the time of the Doximity Empire, Christianity was really widely practiced there by about the sixth century. And this was a lot earlier than Christianity was established in many other parts of Africa. For centuries, people living in the Horn of Africa also didn't have that much contact with other Christian communities.
So the Orthodox Christianity that developed there was unique in a lot of ways with beliefs and practices that could be more similar to Judaism than to what would become the Roman Catholic or Eastern Orthodox churches. But in the sixteen hundreds, Ethiopian emperor Lubna Dangol asked Portugal for help in fighting off an invasion. In the aftermath, Portuguese Jesuits arrived and started trying to convert Ethiopian Orthodox Christians to Roman Catholicism. And that brings us back to Oletta Petro's wellat of Petrus lived in Ethiopia in the early 17th century and was married to one of the emperors counselors.
All three of their children died in their infancy and a lot of parents decided to become a nun. She sort of felt like she was she was done with the more material world. After all that, after the king was convinced to make Roman Catholicism, the state religion and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church was banned, she started a non-violent resistance movement even as the king exiled her and threatened to kill her family. She also founded her own religious community and developed a reputation for being a very skilled preacher.
This also touches on so many things that we love. This is the earliest known book length biography of an African woman, and it's one of the earliest written documents detailing African resistance against European influence. It also details a Petro's lifelong partnership with another woman that was another nun named ahead a Christoph's. It's one of only a few hagiographies of Ethiopian women saints, and it is a huge source of information just about what daily life was like in 17th century Ethiopia.
So the book about her is The Life and Struggles of Our Mother with a lot of Petro's. And it was written by a disciple in 16 72. That was about thirty years after her death. Often something that old is something we would just refer to without a lot of concerns because, you know, it's a classic document in the public domain. But this was translated into English for the first time ever by Windi. Belcher and Michael Kleiner in 2015, Belcher is a professor of comparative, early, modern African and European literatures and grew up in Ethiopia and Ghana.
And Kliner is a translator who specializes in, among other things, Ge'ez, which is the language that this work was originally written in.
This translation earned multiple awards, including the 2015 Best Scholarly Edition in translation from the Society for Early Modern Women. It is also fairly long. It's more than 500 pages for the full version, although there's also a concise edition that is just over one hundred and sixty pages.
Let's take a quick break before we get to a particularly popular one of these. Welcome to Teach Me Something New, a podcast from my Heart Radio in Britain CO, I'm your host, Brit Moore, and I'm an entrepreneur, a CEO and a mom. And I'm curious about a lot of things, but how do you learn about everything? The answer make the world's best experts teach you.
This show is about inspirational thinkers, scientists and artists who are passing their expertise onto us in less than an hour. We've already learned about so much together and I can not wait for what's next. My co-host, investee and I are back with brand new episodes every Wednesday. First up is Glenn and Doyle, activist and best selling author of The Hip-Hop Untamed. She's teaching us how to embrace our most authentic selves. Listen to Teach Me Something New on the radio app, Apple podcast, or wherever you get your podcast.
Hi, I'm David Plouffe. And I'm Steve Schmidt. We're the host of Battleground, a new podcast from the recount. In 2008, I ran Senator John McCain's campaign for president, David Manege. Senator Obama's in battleground.
We're going state by state and giving you in-depth reporting on the Trump and Biden strategies. So did you understand what they're doing and more importantly, why they're doing it?
Listen, a battleground on the I Heart radio app, Apple podcast or wherever you get your podcast.
Now, next up, we have another very frequent listener request, I would say this is one of the topics we have gotten almost the largest number of requests for over the years.
Yeah, if I were placing bets, I would say this has the most requests. Yeah, definitely in the top five, if not the most. And this is also something that we alluded to in our Listener Q&A episode that we did earlier this summer. It is Henrietta Lacks and we've gotten so many requests to talk about Henrietta Lacks over the years. And we have it for two reasons. One is that a big part of her story is that her body and her privacy were violated without her consent and in some ways are doing an episode on her felt like a continuation of that invasion.
That is compounded by our second reason. We would really just be distilling down a book by someone who actually did work with the Lacks family. That is Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. Skloot spent years researching Henrietta Lacks the story and her life and the impact of her cells on medical science, as well as earning the trust of the Lacks family before publishing the book in 2010. And in her acknowledgments, Skloot describes Henrietta's daughter Deborah, as the soul of the book and her thanks to the other Lack's family members and friends.
It goes on for paragraphs after that. So here are the basics. Henrietta Lacks was a black woman who was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 1951. She had five children. The family was poor. They were working as tobacco farmers in Virginia. Laks was treated at Johns Hopkins, which was a segregated hospital at the time, but also one of the very few leading hospitals that actually treated black patients. Blacks died less than a year after being diagnosed on October 4th, 1951, at the age of just thirty one.
While Laks was being treated, a doctor named George Gaye collected cells from her cervix. He did not tell her he was doing this. He did not ask her permission. This really wasn't unusual at the time, since the ideas of informed consent and patient privacy didn't really exist in the same way that they do today. What was really unusual were the cells themselves. At that point, researchers had not been able to keep cells alive outside the human body for very long.
But the cells from LAX's body kept on living and multiplying. They doubled almost every 24 hours. This was the first immortal cell line ever to be discovered. They were named HeLa cells.
After the first letters of Henrietta Lacks is first and last name, these cells became a fundamental part of medical and pharmaceutical research. The polio vaccine was developed using HeLa cells. So were drugs to treat leukemia, Parkinson's disease and influenza. Researchers used HeLa cells to isolate the human immunodeficiency virus. In the early years of the space program, they were sent into orbit to study the effects of low gravity. They have also been used to study the effects of radiation and poisons.
More than 70000 published studies have relied on HeLa cells, and at least two Nobel prizes have been awarded to research that use them. This list goes on and on and on.
Johns Hopkins offered these cells to other researchers and institutions freely. It didn't make money from them. But that is not true of the companies that use them to develop. Things like pharmaceuticals, as Deborah Lacks clearly spells out in Skloot book, HeLa cells were part of all this research and some companies turned huge profits from their use. And yet members of the Lacks family couldn't afford to see a doctor. Henrietta Lacks a story is a lot better known now than it was when we first made the decision to direct listeners to Rebecca Skloot book rather than do an episode ourselves.
In the interim, there was even an HBO movie about it that came out in twenty seventeen since the publication of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Johns Hopkins and other hospitals and organizations have also started to take a more critical look at issues involving racism, medical ethics and informed consent. And that is work that is definitely still ongoing.
Henrietta Lacks is descendants have also talked about how they want people to know about her story and about how much her cells have contributed to medical science.
So talking about her on the show feels like way less of an invasion of her privacy now than it did back when we first made that call in 2013. But Rebecca Skloot groundbreaking, original and deeply influential work continues to be the best source for all of this. I know a lot of people who love to listen to podcasts, want to listen to other things in audio format, and this is also available as an audio book. Also, this year is the 100th and.
Anniversary of Henrietta Lacks birth, and there is a year long centennial celebration ongoing, you can find more at Heela 100, dawg, that is L.A. 101 one zero zero, dawg. OK, moving on. Martha Moore was born in Oxford, Massachusetts, in seventeen thirty five when she was about 19. She married Ephram Ballard. Later they moved to Hollowell, Maine, where Martha Ballard became a midwife. On January 1st, 1785, when she was fifty, Ballard started keeping a diary of her daily life and work.
That was something that she kept up for the next 27 years, ending on May 12th, 1812. And that diary ended up totaling up with ten thousand entries. We've talked about other diaries on the show, like the ones kept by Ann Lister and Samuel Peeps and how they give us a look not only at the diarist, but also at the time and place that they were living. And this is true for Ballard's diary, too. It details her work as a midwife and a healer.
She documented more than 800 births she attended over those twenty seven years. She also documents what life was like in the Kennebec River Valley region in the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
So this diary is a unique and important document. It's full of information about the medicine and midwifery at the time, written in an era when many white women could read at least a little but often could not write at all. It also includes a wealth of information about people who are never mentioned in a lot of other primary sources, including tax and census records that would typically be used for that kind of information. Ballard kept her diary in this collection of little booklets that she made herself, and then those booklets were passed down through her family, ultimately being given to great great granddaughter Mary Hobart.
Hobart was a doctor and she was given these diaries as a gift. When she graduated from medical school, Hobart put them together in order. They had been sort of in disarray, not really chronological anymore. So she put them in order and bound them together in this handmade linen cover and then donated that to the Maine State Library in nineteen thirty. There are a few ways to get a look at Martha Ballards diary today. One is the website Do History Dawg, which has a browser searchable scan of the document.
As is the case with most historical diaries, it's tricky to read both because of Ballard's handwriting, which is rather cramped and because her system of abbreviations and marks for keeping up with midwifery work. And she also had phonetic spellings for words. So it's not a natural flowing read for your casual researcher.
I often have a really challenging time deciphering handwritten documents from long in the past, or even my own handwritten documents from yesterday. Fortunately, through history, Doug also includes text transcriptions of the scanned pages of handwritten diary. These were done by husband and wife team Robert R. McCausland and Cynthia McCalman McCausland. They spent about ten years on this project. There is a print version of their transcription that is almost a thousand pages long. It seems to be out of print now, but it's still available in a lot of libraries, particularly university libraries.
The third is the reason Martha Ballard is in the category of there's a book about it. It's a midwifes tale, the life of Martha Ballard based on her diary, which was written by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich. If that name sounds familiar, it may be because we mentioned her in our episode about The Women of Gettysburg, which we titled Fearless, Feisty and Unflagging. Ulrich is the person who coined the phrase Well-behaved Women Seldom Make History. She also wrote the introduction to the McAuslan transcription of the diary.
In a midwifes tale. She follows selections from the diary with context and analysis. There are these brief notes about where Ballard went and who she saw on a particular day become a narrative about her life, along with just a wealth of context about gender, medicine, religion, domestic life and crime, including a mass murder and a trial for rape. This is a rich and fascinating, and it earned ORIC the Pulitzer Prize in history in nineteen ninety one. And it is also an audio book.
And it was made into a PBS American Experience film called A Midwifes Tale in nineteen ninety eight. That doesn't seem to be streaming anywhere at the moment, but it is available on DVD and now we're going to take another quick sponsor break. This is the secret syllabus podcast. I remember the good old times when I was a college student and then 20/20 hit. Hi, I'm Hannah Ashton.
And I'm Katie Tracy. We're here to fill in everything they missed in our college curriculum, just like you were confronting the unknown.
And if we're being honest, we need all the advice we can get.
Listen to the secret syllabus on the I Heart radio app, Apple podcast or wherever you get your podcasts. See you after class. Hi, this is Melanne Verveer and this is Kim Mazzarelli and we're co-hosts of Senecas Conversations on Power and Purpose, brought to you by the Seneca Women Podcast Network and I Heart Radio.
We're launching a brand new season of this podcast, which brings you fascinating conversations with leaders like two time gold medalist, author and activist Abby Wambach and actor, producer and entrepreneur Justin Baldoni, among many others. Listen to Senecas conversations on power and purpose on the radio app Apple podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. Over the past year or so, I have tried several times to figure out how to approach an episode on Truta of Salerno or The Thula, which is a medieval compendium on women's medicine and cosmetics.
A lot of sources conflate Trotta and the thula, creating this impression that the compendium is the work of only one author who was either named Trotta or Trishala.
Well, of course, it's got to be the same thing. There are no duplicate words in history, but the reality is that the Dracula is really a compilation of three texts by three different people, one of them being an Italian medical practitioner known as Trotta, or truck to these three separate works were copied, revised and shuffled around over centuries until an editor rearranged them into one volume in fifteen forty four. And that addition became the dominant version for the next 400 years.
But the manuscripts really date back to about the 12th century. I kept running into trouble with this research because there's just virtually no biographical information that has survived about Trotta and the widespread Trotta slash Dracula. Confusion just threw a wrench into my research process every time I found a document that seemed promising that then made it seem like those were the same thing, I was like, well, now I don't trust this at all.
And then also, as I kept picking away at it, I realised that the sources that were the clearest about this distinction between the person and the work, we're all by the same author, Dr Monica H. Green. It's not unusual for us to use more than one article or book by the same historian as research for an episode of our show. But in this case it would feel like the entire source list was stuffed by Dr. Greene. Dr. Greene has been working with the Troxel for many years, including separating out those three different manuscripts.
Those are on the condition of women, on the treatments for women and on women's cosmetics. And Dr. Green determined that on treatments for women was by a real historical woman named Truta. And this brings up something really cool about the Troxler. It's likely that the other two works were written by men whose names have been lost. So a woman was ultimately the one credited for this work, yet so often goes the opposite way.
In addition to publishing numerous papers and articles about this subject, Greene has also edited and translated an addition of the Dracula that came out in 2001. And that includes an introduction, the Latin text and an English translation, and then an appendix that details all the medicines that are referenced in the text.
This is the first English translation of the work that has used medieval texts as the starting point rather than later versions in the words of the medieval review quote. This is the definitive Troxell, a new edition of which will not be necessary. This book will be useful to historians of medicine, of women's studies, of medieval culture and of southern Italy, and to graduate and even undergraduate students interested in grappling with the actual practice of medieval medicine. I really feel like that's the most glowing review of any historical source I have read in seven years of working on this podcast.
Also, if all of that talk about different versions seemed a little confusing, it's enough of a tangle that it's actually broken down in Greens edition of The Trishala with a chart.
There are so many different versions. Yeah.
So this last thing that we're going to touch on has a lot going on. There is a gruesome mass murder suicide, possible incest. So we have left it for last. If that is not folks bag, if any of that sounds like you're just not down for it, now is your time to say you have learned about five things.
And go up in Germantown, North Carolina, on Christmas Day 1929, a tobacco farmer named Charlie Lawson killed his wife and six of their seven children. The seventh child, his oldest son, Arthur, had left home on an errand and he was the only member of the family to survive sometime after killing the rest of his family. But before Arthur had gotten back, Charlie Lawson took his own life in the woods outside their home. And by that point, other people had already stopped by the house to wish the family Merry Christmas.
And they had discovered the crime. They actually heard Lawson's final shot in the distance while they were there.
The crime scene itself was bizarre, with the exception of the youngest children Lawson had shot. And then bludgeoned each member of the family, the youngest three, including the baby he bludgeoned to death, and then he had arranged their bodies for his wife and the children that lost and killed inside the house, he put their heads on pillows from their beds, folded their arms over their chests and closed their eyes for the two daughters that he killed while they were outside near the tobacco barn.
He arranged their bodies but used rocks in place of pillows. When Charlie Lawson's body was found, there were two notes in a pocket written on receipts, neither of which contained a complete sentence.
After all of this, Lawson's brother Marion turned the home into kind of a tourist attraction, which sounds a little callous, but huge crowds were flocking to the crime scene anyway. They were doing things like picking the raisins off the cake that the oldest daughter, Marie, had made that day for their Christmas treat. So Mary Ann Lawson was basically trying to keep things under some kind of control and also provide an income for Arthur Lawson so that he didn't lose the family farm.
The crime also became the subject of a murder ballad called Murder of the Lawson Family. So, of course, there are questions that are natural. Why did Lawson murder his family? Why did he so carefully arrange their bodies? Why did he wait until his son Arthur was away from home to carry out this crime? Was it just because Arthur and the friend he was with that day were big enough to try to stop him? Or did Charlie have some other reason that he wanted his son to survive?
And why had the whole family gone into Winston Salem a couple of weeks before that to buy all new store bought clothes and have their portrait taken? That would have been a huge and unusual expense for a poor farming family at the start of the Great Depression.
So we don't really have answers to any of that. But there is a lot of speculation. One of the Charlie Lawson wasn't actually the culprit, that he had witnessed some other crime and that perpetrator had then killed them all in retaliation. Another theory blames a head injury that Charlie Lawson had experienced sometime before, which reportedly caused severe headaches and changes to his behaviour. And the last theory was first publicized in the book about this. That is White Christmas, Bloody Christmas, written by Embracer Jones and Trudy J.
Smith in nineteen eighty nine. Just before the book was going to print, Stella Lawson Bowles, Marion Lawson's daughter, contacted the authors and told them that she had heard rumours that 17 year old Marie was pregnant at the time of the murders and that the baby was her father's. So in terms of this book, Embry's Jones and Trudy J. Smith were father and daughter. Jones had a lifelong fascination with this crime. He was a child living in the area when it happened, and he had compiled a wealth of research over his lifetime.
The two of them collaborated on the book, which they self published in nineteen ninety. It is really hard to find now, although there's a 25th anniversary hardcover that came out in twenty fifteen. Smith also published a follow up called The Meaning of Our Tears, which is available as an e-book. The Meaning of our Tears isn't focused only on this crime and its aftermath. It's also focused on the years of hardship and grief that this family had lived through in the years before the murders.
It's like halfway into the book when the murders actually happen.
This particular instance is also an example of how other podcasts with different styles and resources can approach material that probably wouldn't work as well for us. These murders are, for example, covered in an episode of the podcast Criminal hosted by Phoebe Judge. And the criminal team goes on the road and interviews people who have some kind of connection to a crime, whether they're the perpetrators, the victims or the investigators. And they describe it as, quote, stories of people who've done wrong, been wronged or gotten caught somewhere in the middle.
So in this case, they actually went to Stokes County, North Carolina, and they talked directly to local residents and to Trudy Smith. They weren't talking to people who knew Charlie Lawson or his victims personally, but to people who have some kind of connection to this story. All of this comes together in criminal episode number 25, which is called The Portrait. There is also a limited series podcast from FOX eight in High Point, North Carolina, that tells the story, including archival interviews with relatives and others with more firsthand knowledge that is called deadly secrets.
The Lawson family murder.
Yeah, in both cases, they went out and did legwork and talked directly to people. We would be just summarizing someone else's.
Yes. Since our show is not a show where we go out and do fieldwork, something like that is just not really accessible when everything is speculative, as awesome as it would be to go out and do field work. It is not something that's conducive to a show that puts out two new episodes a week every week that takes more time than is is existing four hour episodes. So, yeah, that is six things, five of which we've gotten lots of requests for, where a book is just the number one place to go to learn more about that.
Do you have listener mail, Tracey? I do.
It is from Katie. And Katie says, Hello, Holly and Tracey. I'm one of those wacky people who listen to the whole archive from the beginning. And I've finally caught up on the latest podcast. I'm almost sad that I don't have a ton of new episodes waiting for me to jump into. I wanted to thank you for making such a great podcast. I so admire your commitment to kindness and justice and how well you research subject. I've learned so much from you guys and laughed and grabbed my teeth along with you and all the things you've covered.
I have a question and then a podcast recommendation and some possible pandemic reading. The question is who is the person on the cover art? Is it a historical painting or drawing or done by someone connected to stuff you missed in history class? I've been wondering this for months. I feel so happy when I see this French questionmark efface pop up on my phone. My podcast recommendation for your extremely long recommendations list is Thomas Downing. I'm going to go right Thomas Downing on the list, which is very long.
And so I'm going to skip ahead to the synopsis of some Thomas Downing stuff. And then Katie goes on to say, this is a throwback. But when you talked about Lalibela in the history of Ethiopian Christianity, I remember the history rabbit hole. I fell down a while back. The sign and the seal is a very interesting, if slightly wild book on the Ark of the Covenant and the Ethiopian tradition of it. Traveling to Lake Tana. It's by Graham Hancock, who eventually went completely off the rails.
But during this time, I think he was doing some pretty interesting, if slightly dubious work. To be clear, I don't mean the tradition itself is dubious. I'm in no position to judge another culture, but it definitely has been incorporated into some wild Holy Grail type stuff. I read it several years ago, so I can't remember many details beyond it being a fascinating ride. If you're looking for some pandemic reading about important traditions conducted by a pretty eccentric and passionate white guy from outside the culture, I'd definitely recommend it.
Thank you again, Holly and Tracey, for all your great work. Even when the podcast topics are difficult, I feel a level of comfort when I listen to you because of the respect, compassion and intellect you bring.
And then we could talk about cheese or something else. Delightful before you. Too long. Sincerely, Katie. I snagged this one in part because of the reference to Lalibela, Ethiopian Christianity, which came up again on today's episode. I have never read or possibly even heard of the book that Katie has mentioned. So I cannot speak to its quality or anything like that. But I found the connection interesting. And to answer the question, who is the person on the cover art?
It's Marie Antoinette, as drawn from like a cameo jewelry piece that somebody who worked with our show many years ago put together for us. So almost a correct guess with French. Yes, technically Austria, right? Yeah.
We were trying to come up with a new logo at that time and we wanted something that suggested history and suggested some of the things that we talk about on the show, like, for example, including women. But we also wanted one that didn't feel like we were appropriating something just for the sake of making a podcast logo.
And Marie Antoinette seemed to fit that bill. Plus, as we've talked about, I think we both enjoy reading, learning and talking about various things related to Marie Antoinette.
So thank you again, Katie, for that email. If you'd like to write to us about this or any other podcast or a history podcast that I heart radio dot com. And we're all over social media at MTT in history. You can also subscribe to our show on Apple podcast and the radio app and anywhere else you like to get podcasts.
Stuff you missed in history class is the production of I Heart Radio for more podcasts from My Heart radio visit by her radio app Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to your favorite shows.
This is the secret syllabus podcast. I am a YouTube and a student at Belmont University. I'm a YouTube year and an international student at Cornell University and probably just like you. I remember the good old times when I was a college student and then 20/20 hit.
How am I supposed to make friends while staying six feet apart? What will happen to the parties and tailgates?
What about my college closure? Will I just be sent home again? Home again at home again.
So that's where the secret syllabus comes in. Hi, I'm Hannah Ashton. And I'm Katie Tracy.
We're here to fill in everything they missed in our college curriculum, just like you were confronting the unknown both as college students and content creators. And if we're being honest, we need all the advice we can get.
Listen to the secret syllabus on the I Heart radio app, Apple podcast, or wherever you get your podcasts.
No prerequisites necessary. See after class.
Hi, this is Melanne Verveer and this is Kim Mazzarelli, we are co-authors of the book, Fast Forward How Women Can Achieve Power and Purpose and where co-hosts of Senecas Conversations on Power and Purpose brought to you by the Seneca Women Podcast Network and I Heart Radio for launching a brand new season of this podcast, which brings you fascinating conversations with leaders who are using their power for purpose to accelerate progress for women while building a better world. We're kicking it off with a special six part series called Getting to Equal.
These episodes will feature conversations with leaders like two time gold medalist, author and activist Abby Wambach, spoken word poet, author and podcast Ameena Brown and actor, producer and entrepreneur Justin Baldoni, among many others. And we'll tackle topics ranging from women's leadership to equality in the home to the role of men in achieving gender equality and much more so join us every week for a new season of Senecas Conversations on Power and Purpose. Listen to Senecas conversations on power and purpose on the Internet radio app, Apple podcasts or wherever you get your podcast.