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Lindsay Chervinsky, Ph.D.

The dos and don’ts of podcasting

You’ve published a book or you have a specific area of expertise and you’d like to go on podcasts as a guest to talk about? Good for you, you’ve taken the first step! Podcasts are a wonderful way to reach new audiences and promote your work. Just recognizing their value is an excellent starting place. As they say, you have to recognize you have a problem before you can fix it.

But you probably don’t personally know dozens or hundreds of podcast hosts, so you’ll need to do some work to reach out. Here’s the method I used for my…

But only if we share the full, messy story

RVA Counter-Protests Against New-CSA, Courtesy: Mobilus in Mobili

This week I read an article in TIME titled “The Split in How Americans Think About Our Collective Past is Real — But There’s a Way Out of the ‘History Wars’.” The article explores how the culture wars have extended to history curriculum, causing people of different religions, races, political orientations, and gender to respond to history in different ways. This war is fought in many arenas, not least of which is the battle over monuments and statues.

TIME suggests that the way out of these “history wars” is by emphasizing an inquiry-based approach rather than a facts-based curriculum. Basically…

And what we should keep when the pandemic is over

The last year has been brutal (obviously), as the country and the world suffers through a global pandemic. While not as severe as loss of life or the loss of a family member, the loss of professional opportunities is still devastating. That’s especially true for authors who have spent years working on a product only to have your book tour or book parties canceled. Nothing can fully make up for a book launch party, but there are many steps you can take to promote your book online. …

How George Washington established the presidency

Washington’s reception on the bridge at Trenton in 1789 on his way to be inaugurated 1st president of the U.S. Engraved by T. Kelley. c. 1835. Library of Congress

President Franklin D. Roosevelt took office in 1933 amidst the worst economic depression in the nation’s history. Almost 25% of Americans were out of work, and many had been unemployed for years. Churches and public relief organizations had long-since emptied their pantries and spent their emergency funds, and families were literally starving. Faced with the unprecedented crisis, FDR and Congress worked together to pass fifteen bills to rescue banks, support farmers, feed Americans, and put people back to work. The enormous outpouring of legislation and executive activity in FDR’s first 100 days created a new standard for productivity.

But long…

To grasp the full scope of Trump’s historic failure, compare him to FDR

President Franklin D. Roosevelt sitting at desk, giving radio address.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt sitting at desk, giving radio address.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt giving a radio address. Harris & Ewing, Courtesy: Library of Congress

As the impeachment trial in the Senate begins today, the country is grappling with the final weeks of the 45th president. In the days leading up to the inauguration, Donald Trump’s cemented his presidential legacy by inciting a seditionist insurrection. On January 6, the same day rioters attacked the U.S. Capitol, over 4,000 people died from COVID-19. When Trump left office, the death toll passed 400,000–70,000 more than the number of Americans killed in combat in World War II. In his inaugural address, President Joe Biden noted this dark milestone. President Trump remained silent. His indifference to American suffering and…

But here’s who we should actually be talking about

As the White House and Republicans in Congress trade negotiations about the infrastructure bill, the FDR comparisons are natural. But I think that Eisenhower is actually a more apt comparison, especially if we consider why Eisenhower and Biden are so focused on infrastructure. In addition to my monthly columns at Governing, I also write monthly columns for The Hill. Here’s a bit of a taste of this month’s column:

Starting with a bit of background on the two presidents:

Much of Biden’s popularity during the campaign season and his first few months in office derives from his blue-collar persona. Even…

Twitter might be the latest, but it’s not the first

Photo courtesy Sean MacEntee

Last week, Facebook announced that it was banning former president Donald Trump from its platform for two years. The news made waves because of the enormous impact of social media on our political culture, campaigning, and communication. I write a monthly column for Governing, usually exploring the history behind a current phenomenon or historical question. I’ve written on everything from political spouses, the cabinet, the executive order, dereliction of duty, unusual impeachments, the vice president, and more. You can check out all of those articles HERE.

This month, I decided…

But she’s not the first

This week, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene is in the news for comparing mask mandates to the Holocaust. A few months ago, she was making waves for talking about Jewish space lasers. Last week, she targeted fellow Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. MTG screamed at AOC and harassed her, as the New York representative walked down the hallway.

Rep. Tim Ryan, (D-Ohio) called Greene’s actions “dangerous,” while House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) hinted that an ethics investigation may be forthcoming. (For her part, Greene denies yelling at AOC.)

This hostile interaction was not the first in Greene’s short career in Congress, nor is…

And how to make it work for your content

Photo credit: Dennis Skley

I know that everyone receives way too many emails, but you should send more. Here’s why.

You do not own social media.

At any moment any platform could decide to shut down and you’d lose the following you painstakingly gathered. Don’t believe me? Just ask Vine creators.

You can control what people see.

Because you don’t own social media, you can’t control wait people see. They can change up the algorithms at any moment and all of a sudden, only 10% of your followers are served your content. Unless you pay for ads. Obviously.

Social media doesn’t sell.

Ok it does, a little. But I can tell you from my own experience that I sell way…

And why they haven’t changed as much as you might think

Brooklyn Museum — The Republican Court (Lady Washington’s Reception Day) — Daniel Huntington, 1861

For as long as men have wielded power, women have facilitated their reigns. To be sure, much has changed since 1789 when Martha Washington hosted drawing rooms as part of the Republican Court. But there are also surprising similarities.

“The Republican Court was comprised of the governing officials and elite families in New York City and Pennsylvania. Martha Washington’s Friday evening drawing rooms were the focal point of Republican Court festivities, but Second Lady Abigail Adams and the Cabinet secretaries’ wives also hosted weekly gatherings. The presence of women made these events semiprivate and nonpolitical. Technically, women weren’t supposed to…

Lindsay Chervinsky, Ph.D.

Historian. Writer. Speaker. Author of THE CABINET.

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