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1.

Discovery of a New World [electronic resource]

This program studies European exploration and conquest, beginning in the late Middle Ages and leading up to the emergence of the major colonial powers. Byzantium's fall in 1453 sets the narrative stage for Henry the Navigator's massive initiative to find new trade routes into Asia. Henry's nautical school at Sagres is described in detail, along with the voyages of Columbus, Gil Eannes, Vasco da Gama, and contemporaneous Arabian and Chinese adventurers. This program depicts an age of radical technological innovation, atrocities for God and gold, and varying awareness of the world's true size and shape.
Online
2006; 2004
2.

Making the World Safe for Democracy [electronic resource]: Manifest Destiny

As the United States reshaped Manifest Destiny for use in the 20th century, the concept came to be equated not with conquest and expansion, but with the spread of American values and institutions. Focusing on World War I and the Russian Revolution, the section "A New World Order" traces the deflected trajectory of President Wilson's idealistic plan to export democracy - a plan that ended in compromises and broken dreams. "Containment," which begins with World War II, examines the spread of communism in Asia and U.S. opposition to it via the Kennan policy of containment and the Truman Doctrine. And "Quagmire" discusses how the Kennedy and Johnson administrations felt duty-bound to escalate American political and military involvement in Vietnam as a part of an ideological proxy war bet [...]
Online
2010
3.

The Silk Road [electronic resource]

Separated by vast and inhospitable distances, Europe and Eastern Asia began to interact in a meaningful way during the second century B.C.-thanks to a growing traffic in spices, fabrics, and other goods along what became known as the Silk Road. It was a collision of culture and tradition that changed the course of world history. Winding tens of thousands of miles between China and several Mediterranean countries, the route enabled an exchange of ideas among dramatically different civilizations. This program follows history's famed artery of global commerce and examines the many urban centers and ports of call it enriched-or, in some cases, endangered-over the centuries.
Online
2010; 2000
4.

Paris 1919 [electronic resource]: Inside the Peace Talks That Changed the World

Many of the geopolitical hot button issues of recent decades trace their roots directly back to decisions made during the 1919 Paris peace talks. Inspired by historian Margaret MacMillan's acclaimed book Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World, this program dramatically blends historical reenactments with archival footage and photos to shed light on a long moment in history when the victorious combatants of the Great War - fueled by a combination of hope, opportunism, and anger - created the League of Nations, redrew the map of the modern world, and revenged themselves upon Germany via the Treaty of Versailles. A definitive documentary.
Online
2008
5.

Windows on the World [electronic resource]

Maps aren't simply about getting from A to B. As this program shows, they are often condensations of a particular culture's worldview, and, as such, a map forms a revealing snapshot of a moment in history. Visiting one of humanity's earliest maps, scratched into the rocks of an alpine hillside 3,000 years ago, the film goes on to illustrate how each culture develops its own unique and surprising way of mapping. Examples include Henry VIII's stunning diagrams of the British coastline, maps created by the French Cassini dynasty with the aim of greater scientific accuracy, and a Polynesian navigator's map which has no use for north, south, and east. Problematic cartography comes to light as the program depicts how the British carved the nation of Iraq out of the Middle East.
Online
2010
6.

Spirit of the Age [electronic resource]

Cartography may have a basis in science, but even in the hands of experts and authorities, it hasn't always resulted in balanced representations of the world. This program focuses on the map as a product of the fears, dogmas, or prejudices of its age. In one segment, an antiquated map designed to help Jewish immigrants in London ironically conveys anti-Semitism. Medieval maps created out of spiritual passion show the way to heaven, the route to Jerusalem, and the regions in which monstrous children eat their parents. Victorian-era maps evoke obsessions with race, poverty, and disease, while royal cartographer James Wyld's world map awards each country a score from one to five, depending on its level of "civilization." Rounding out the program: a look at Google Earth, Worldmapper, and [...]
Online
2010
7.

Plunder and Possession [electronic resource]

Sparking awareness of distant lands, maps have likewise tempted the ambitious to pillage and conquer through the centuries. This program examines cartography's role in a disturbing dynamic-that which spans the urge to discover for discovery's sake and the relentless drive to extend power, reap faraway resources, and satisfy greed. Profiling the father of geography, Claudius Ptolemy, and his ideas for transferring spherical configurations to a flat surface, the film revisits the voyages of Christopher Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci, and Sir Walter Raleigh-all of whom served as instruments of political and economic domination as well as more scholarly concerns. The theme is further developed through accounts of the Dutch East India Company as well as today's so-called "Cold Rush"-the race [...]
Online
2010
8.

Monsters to Destroy [electronic resource]: Manifest Destiny

With the collapse of the U.S.S.R., suddenly the U.S. was the sole superpower - a militaristic global leader with no clear enemy or foreign policy goal. The section "New World Disorder" illustrates the unprecedented turbulence of the fractured post - Cold War world during the George H. W. Bush administration: the Tiananmen Square protests, the U.S. invasion of Panama, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Gulf War, ethnic cleansing in the Balkans and Rwanda, and famine in Somalia. "Indispensable Nation" analyzes President Clinton's inability to create a demilitarized Manifest Destiny based solely on trade and economic growth. And "Smarter Than History" uses pivotal events from the George W. Bush presidency - the 9/11 attacks and the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq - to examine the compro [...]
Online
2011
9.

Hayek and the Free Market [electronic resource]

According to conventional wisdom, the 2008 financial crisis happened because markets were not regulated enough. But what if the opposite is true? What if excessive government meddling in business caused the crash? To better understand that avenue of thought, it's necessary to study the work of a classical liberal thinker whose reputation continues to grow, even in a post-crisis world that seems to place a premium on Keynesian solutions. Shot in London, Vienna, and across the U.S., this program looks at the extraordinary life and influence of the radical free-market economist Friedrich Hayek. Hearing from high-ranking bank officials, leading politicians, and a Nobel laureate about the development and implications of the Austrian-born scholar's philosophy, viewers are encouraged to ask [...]
Online
2012
10.

Karl Marx and Marxian Economics [electronic resource]

As long as economic highs and lows continue in what many view as a destructive global pattern, and as long as the gap between rich and poor produces tensions across the world, a perceived basis for anti-capitalist thought will most likely persist. Is there even a case to be made, despite the ending of the Cold War, that socialist ideas remain relevant? Can they be taken seriously in an age of global trade and finance? This program reflects on one of the most revolutionary and controversial thinkers of all time - Karl Marx, who argued that capitalism is inherently unfair, doomed to collapse, and should be abolished. Traveling from Marx's birthplace to a former detention center in Berlin, viewers learn how his work left an indelible stamp on the lives of billions, how his economic anal [...]
Online
2010
11.

Making Ourselves at Home [electronic resource]

To conquer and possess other lands is only one part of the empire-building equation-the other part is to make those lands (and their peoples) conform to the dominant culture. This program shows how traders, soldiers, and settlers spread the British way of life around the world, and in particular how they created a very British idea of home. Viewers learn about early phases of the English presence in India, in which traders wore Indian attire and took Indian wives-until Victorian constraints put a stop to that. Visiting a Canadian town in which the inhabitants are still fiercely proud of their Scottish heritage, the film also travels to places where there is more ambivalence surrounding the history of colonization: a club in Singapore where British colonials often gathered and a Kenya [...]
Online
2012
12.

Making a Fortune [electronic resource]

God, glory, and gold-among those three motives for conquest, there's little doubt about which shines brightest. This program shows how Britain's hegemony began as a pirates' treasure hunt, grew into a loosely aligned realm based on trade, and developed into not only an empire but a global financial network. Viewers travel from Jamaica, where sugar made plantation owners rich on the backs of African slaves, to Calcutta, where British traders became the new princes of India. The film then heads to Hong Kong, where British-supplied opium fueled colonization and economic dominance. Unfair trading helped spark the independence movement in India, led by Mahatma Gandhi; in a former cotton-spinning town in Lancashire, viewers meet two women who remember Gandhi's extraordinary visit in 1931.
Online
2012
13.

The Explorers [electronic resource]: Five Europeans Who Redrew the Map of the World

Using sophisticated animation and expertise from modern scholars and archivists, this program reconstructs European voyages of discovery that took place in the 15th through 18th centuries and profiles the visionaries who led them. Viewers are introduced to Amerigo Vespucci, the Italian merchant who gave his name to the New World; Ferdinand Magellan, the Portuguese admiral who found the passage to the Pacific; Louis-Antoine Bougainville, the first Frenchman to circumnavigate the globe; French explorer Jean Francois de Galaup La Perouse, whose expedition criss-crossed the Pacific, then vanished in Oceania; and James Cook, the English navigator who mapped the Eastern coast of Australia.
Online
2009; 2008
14.

Photographer [electronic resource]: Lodz Ghetto Through the Lens of Walter Genewein

In 1987, in a Viennese shop, hundreds of color slides from World War II were found. It turned out they had been made in the Lodz ghetto by a skilled amateur photographer named Walter Genewein, chief accountant on the ghetto council and a proud member of the Nazi party. In this documentary, filmmaker Dariusz Jablonski combines Genewein's disturbing images of ghetto life with the recollections of Dr. Arnold Mostowicz, the last surviving witness of the events portrayed, to create an important testament to the suffering and subsequent extermination of the ghetto's Jews. "In the midst of atrocity, [Genewein] saw only German success," says The Daily Telegraph (London).
Online
1998
15.

Kovno Ghetto [electronic resource]: A Buried History

Kovno Ghetto: A Hidden History tells the true story of the German-occupied city in Lithuania, starting in 1941 through the Soviet invasion, as the Jewish population was forced to live in squalid and brutal conditions. Razed to the ground in 1944, with its citizens dispersed to concentration camps as forced labor - or worse - a few buried remnants of Jewish defiance survived as artifacts, letters, and photos, bearing witness to the atrocity.
Online
1997
16.

John Maynard Keynes and Keynesianism [electronic resource]

If anyone comes close to rivaling Winston Churchill as the central figure in modern British history, it is John Maynard Keynes. He is often credited with, among other things, helping to save capitalism from the Great Depression, ensuring that the war against the Nazis was properly funded, and building postwar decades of growth and prosperity. Today his ideas remain crucial to the critical debate of our time: should governments borrow and spend their way out of a global economic crisis or slash their budgets and reduce their national debts? With contributions from some of the world's leading economic thinkers, including a Nobel laureate and the governor of the Bank of England, this program examines the Keynesian economic vision - acknowledging the ongoing controversies around it while [...]
Online
2012
17.

Breaking the Bonds, 1360-1415 [electronic resource]

England, wracked by plague and revolt, loses the upper hand until Henry V, determined to prove his right to be king, turns the tide at the battle of Agincourt. Dr. Nina Ramirez follows the momentous and nation-shaping war between England and France.
Online
2013
18.

Dark Charisma of Hitler: Part 1 [electronic resource]

Adolf Hitler seemed an unlikely leader-fuelled by anger, incapable of forming normal human relationships, and unwilling to debate political issues; such was the depth of his hatred that he would become a war criminal arguably without precedent in history. Yet this strange character was once loved by millions. How was this possible, and what role did Hitler's alleged 'charisma' play in his success? With the help of testimony from those who lived through those times, archival film (including color home movies), and specially shot documentary footage, this film reveals how Hitler managed to turn from a "peculiar" nobody into the chancellor and Führer of the German people. This is the first episode in a three-part series written and produced by Laurence Rees, who won a BAFTA for his seri [...]
Online
2012
19.

Dark Charisma of Hitler: Part 2 [electronic resource]

Adolf Hitler's leadership relied on an inner voice and absolute certainties rather than advice and political debate. His grandiosity and hatred led to war aims and atrocities that went far beyond any concrete German interest, and beyond what most Germans initially wanted. Yet this strange man was once loved by millions. With the help of testimony from those who lived through these times, film archive - including color home movies - and specially shot documentary footage, this film reveals how Hitler managed to lead the German people to war in 1939 and orchestrate the dramatic German victory over the French in 1940. This is the second episode in a three-part series written and produced by Laurence Rees, who won a BAFTA for his previous series Nazis: A Warning from History and a Griers [...]
Online
2012
20.

Nuremberg [electronic resource]: Tyranny on Trial

World War II in Europe didn't end on the battlefield; it ended in the courtroom. This A&E Special covers the Nuremberg trials, which set a new standard for atrocity: "crimes against humanity.?
Online
1992