Conversations in World History

Conversations in World History is a bridge to the past connecting scholars to people interested in the deeper meaning of history. Here, my informal chats with historians open up the past, their research, and major questions and debates in the field. These episodes should help us all engage in the fascinating conversations of world history and to hear from the people who are writing the next pages. The host, David Sherrin, is an author and award-winning social studies teacher. Check out other episodes and his books at

Listen on:

  • Apple Podcasts
  • Podbean App
  • Spotify
  • iHeartRadio


2 days ago

In this episode, I speak with Professor Merry Wiesner-Hanks, Distinguished Professor Emerita of University of Wisconsin-Madison and former president of the World History Association. Merry has written books like A Concise History of the World and Early Modern Europe. We talk about women's history in general and the misconceptions about the lives of women in the past. 

6 days ago

In this episode, I speak with World History Association president Jonathan Reynolds about the Cold War in Africa. Jonathan is a professor of African History at Northern Kentucky University. He's the type of teacher we all wish we'd had. Jonathan has written a number of books, including Sovereignty and Struggle: African and Africans in the Cold War. This short book has a ton of flair and the same vibrant voice that you will hear in the podcast comes alive in the text. 

Tuesday Jan 24, 2023

In this episode I speak with Trevor Getz, professor of African History at San Francisco State University. We discuss the what constitutes Africa, the tools for studying African history, misconceptions about Africa, and more. Trevor has written a number of books including Abina and the Important Men, Cosmopolitan Africa, and A Primer for Teaching African History. He is also Vice-President of the World History Association.

Saturday Jan 21, 2023

"Teacher's Corner" episodes are conversations with K-12 educators about how they bring topics in world history to life. Here, I chat with Andy Snyder about The Good Life (or "Living your Best Life"), his high school philosophy class. Andy was my former colleague at Harvest Collegiate, a public school in New York City, and he is one of the most thoughtful and thought-provoking teachers I have had the chance to work with. 

Wednesday Jan 18, 2023

In this episode, I talk with Professor Matthew Restall of Penn State University about his book When Montezuma Met Cortes. We discuss the problems with the traditional narrative and the ways that an approach centered on the actions of indigenous Mexicans is more accurate and more interesting. Did Montezuma really surrender? Did he give away his empire in his speech to Cortes? Did Cortes kidnap Montezuma? Did Aztecs really believe Cortes was a returning Aztec god? Listen to find out these answers and more. 

Wednesday Jan 18, 2023

For this first episode, I am speaking about “India then and now” with Ian Barrow, professor of South Asian history at Middlebury College in Vermont. He has written three books, the latest being a history of the British East India Company. Ian is currently working on a new book about the history of the independence struggles in South Asia. 
We discuss the meaning of India, power and resistance in colonial South Asia, the myth of Gandhi, causes of Indian independence, major issues in India between 1947 and today, and much more.


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