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 Pushkin Industries. Because sometimes the past deserves a second chance.
Malcolm Gladwell speaks with Oprah Winfrey about his new book Talking to Strangers, the one mystery he hopes might be resolved in our lifetimes, and the ways we could all benefit from a little more patience and humility when judging people we don’t know.
On February 24, 1996, Cuban fighter jets shot down two small planes operated by Brothers to the Rescue, an organization in Florida that tried to spot refugees fleeing Cuba in boats. A strange chain of events preceded the shoot-down, and people in the intelligence business turned to a rising star in the Defense Intelligence Agency, Ana Montes. Montes was known around Washington as the “Queen of Cuba” for her insights into the Castro regime. But what Montes’ colleagues eventually found out about her shook their sense of trust to the core. (In this excerpt from Malcolm Gladwell’s forthcoming audiobook Talking to Strangers, we hear why spy mysteries do not unfold in real life like they do in the movies.)To preorder a copy of Talking to Strangers and check out Malcolm Gladwell's book tour, visit www.gladwellbooks.com.
Throughout the 1970s, a biologist named Howard Temin became convinced that something wasn’t right in science’s understanding of viruses. His colleagues dismissed him as a heretic. He turned out to be right — and you're alive today as a result. Season Four ends with a bedtime story about how we should be freed by our doubts, not imprisoned by them.
You thought that there was only one kind of chutzpah. Wrong. There’s two. Revisionist History tells the story of the Mafia’s showdown with a legendary Hollywood producer, in a battle of competing chutzpahs.
Two seasons after its investigation of the decline of McDonalds french fries, Revisionist History returns to fast-food’s high-tech test kitchens. This time the subject is cultural appropriation. The case study is Taco Bell. Oh, and Pat Boone is involved.
John Rock was the co-inventor of the birth control pill — and a committed Catholic. He wanted his church to approve of his invention. What happens when a layman takes on the Vatican? Part two of three.
Revisionist History tries to make sense of the conundrum of PED use in baseball, using the 500-year-old philosophical techniques of St. Ignatius. Part one of a three-part series on the moral reasoning of the Jesuit order.
If you disagree with someone — if you find what they think appalling — is there any value in talking to them? In the early 1970s, the talk show host Dick Cavett, the governor of Georgia Lester Maddox, and the singer Randy Newman tried to answer this question.
Bohea, the aroma of tire fire, Mob Wives, smugglers, “bro” tea, and what it all means to the backstory of the American Revolution. Malcolm tells the real story on what happened in Boston on the night of December 16, 1773.
A weird speech by Antonin Scalia, a visit with some serious legal tortoises, and a testy exchange with the experts at the Law School Admissions Council prompts Malcolm to formulate his Grand Unified Theory for fixing higher education.
Revisionist History presents Solvable, a new show from Pushkin Industries and the Rockefeller Foundation that showcases the world’s most innovative thinkers and their ideas about how to solve the world’s most daunting problems. The interviews, conducted by journalists like Malcolm Gladwell and Jacob Weisberg, dive into the complexity of issues like maternal mortality, food waste, and viral disinformation, while inspiring hope that such immense problems are, in fact, solvable.In episode one, Malcolm Gladwell talks to Rosanne Haggerty about ending homelessness for everyone. Forever.
Malcolm Gladwell presents Ref, You Suck!, the first episode of the newest podcast from Pushkin Industries: Against the Rules with Michael Lewis. Rage at referees is all the rage in professional sports. Michael Lewis visits a replay center that’s trying to do the impossible: adjudicate fairness.If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to Against the Rules wherever you get your podcasts.
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.
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.
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.
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
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