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Oklahoma Humanities

BrainBox

Oklahoma Humanities’ BrainBox podcast uses the humanities to discuss issues affecting American society and culture.

Join us as we interview some of Oklahoma’s most interesting and knowledgeable humanities scholars to explore how history, literature, ethics, philosophy, and other humanities fields inform our understanding of current events and the human experience.

Email comments, questions, and ideas for future episodes to brainbox@okhumanities.org

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Gettysburg and the Legacy of the Civil War

Viewing the Civil War through the lens of its largest battle, Gettysburg gives deeper insights into the war's misconceptions, mythologies, and memories. We speak with one of the leading scholars of the Battle of Gettysburg, Dr. Jen Murray of Oklahoma State University, about the context of the battle, its impact on the ultimate defeat of the Confederacy, its role in the "Lost Cause" narrative, and the many ways the Civil War's legacy still affects American society and culture.

 
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Additional information about this episode: okhumanities.org/page/brainbox-s3-ep7

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Oklahoma's Black Towns

Anthropologists Suzette Chang and Dr. Elisha Oliver illuminate the history and significance of Oklahoma’s Black Towns. We look at the origins of the Black Towns following the Civil War, examine the challenges their citizens faced before and after Oklahoma’s statehood, and discuss these communities’ historical and ongoing importance to the identity of Oklahoma. 

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Our homepage: okhumanities.org/brainbox

Additional information about this episode: okhumanities.org/page/brainbox-s3-ep6

Let's chat. Share your thought about this topic here.

The Worst Pandemic of the 20th Century

What can we learn from the "Spanish Flu" pandemic that claimed at least 50 million lives worldwide a century ago? Dr. Justin Olmstead, a professor of history at the University of Central Oklahoma and one of the leading historians of this time period, discusses the impact of this pandemic on American life and culture. We discuss the origins and various names given to this pandemic (3:15), its impact on the final stages of the First World War (20:30), and its wide-ranging effects on everyday life a century ago and how they compare with our own experiences with the Coronavirus in 2020 (49:30).

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Our homepage: okhumanities.org/brainbox

Additional information about this episode: okhumanities.org/page/brainbox-s3-ep5

Let's chat. Share your thought about this topic here.

Orphan Trains across America

How were over a quarter-million orphans and unwanted children resettled by trains across the United States from 1854 until 1929? We speak with Alison Moore and Phil Lancaster, whose "Riders on the Orphan Train" programs tell this little-known story from American history. Alison and Phil discuss the circumstances that led to the orphan train movement in the mid-19th century (1:40), tell how the program actually worked (12:30), and relate stories of orphan train riders brought to Oklahoma (27:15). We also discuss how circumstances have changed for orphans and unwanted children and how these situations help us understand our country and ourselves (42:00), and we hear Alison and Phil's song "Ezra's Lullaby," inspired by the stories of the orphan train riders (1:05:00).


Facebook: @Ok.Humanities

Twitter: @Okhumanities

Instagram: @Okhumanities

Our homepage: okhumanities.org/brainbox

Additional information about this episodeokhumanities.org/page/brainbox-s3-ep4

Let's chat. Share your thought about this topic here.

Slavery in Indian Territory

Before the Civil War over 8,000 people were enslaved in Indian Territory, in what is now Oklahoma. A new exhibit on the site of a former plantation outside Tahlequah describes the lives and experiences of enslaved people on this land.  In this episode we speak with Jennifer Frazee, a historical interpreter at Hunter’s Home who has deeply researched the history of enslaved people in Indian Territory in an effort to keep their stories and history alive.

Facebook: @Ok.Humanities

Twitter: @Okhumanities

Instagram: @Okhumanities

Our homepage: okhumanities.org/brainbox

Additional information about this episode: www.okhumanities.org/page/brainbox-s3-ep3

Find more information here about the historic site at Hunter’s Home: https://www.okhistory.org/sites/huntershome

Let's chat. Share your thought about this topic here.

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