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#44 The History of NASCAR w/ Kyle Petty

The Road to Now

Release Date: 02/13/2017

#172 Fourth Anniversary Party show art #172 Fourth Anniversary Party

The Road to Now

There was a lot happening when Bob & Ben launched the first episode of The Road to Now on May 19th, 2016. It was the year of a Presidential election, there was an intense feeling of partisanship in the air, and people were everywhere- at concerts, in classes, on the sidewalk….

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#171 Baseball in Context w/ Jayson Stark show art #171 Baseball in Context w/ Jayson Stark

The Road to Now

Bob & Ben talk with award-winning sportswriter Jayson Stark about baseball’s place in American culture, how the scandals in the sport reflect moments in American history, and how Major League Baseball has persevered through some of our country’s hardest times. Jayson also talks about his path from beat writer to award-winning sportswriter, what he considers important when casting his vote for the Baseball Hall of Fame, and why nobody wants to visit the National Baseball Hall of Purity.

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#170 Soviet Soldiers and the Red Army in World War II w/ Brandon Schechter show art #170 Soviet Soldiers and the Red Army in World War II w/ Brandon Schechter

The Road to Now

On June 22, 1941, Nazi Germany launched an attack on the USSR that caught Soviet leaders completely off guard. Over the next four years, the Red Army was transformed, as were the lives of its more than 34 million men & women. In this episode, Ben speaks with Brandon Schechter about his book The Stuff of Soldiers: A History of the Red Army in World War II Through Objects and how examining the objects used during World War II can give us a deeper understanding of soldiers’ lives and the war as a whole.

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# 169 The Kinks: Songs of the Semi-Detached w/ Mark Doyle show art # 169 The Kinks: Songs of the Semi-Detached w/ Mark Doyle

The Road to Now

The Kinks are one of the great rock bands of the 20th century, and like all artists, they reflect the times and places they’ve inhabited. In this episode, we speak with Mark Doyle about his excellent new book The Kinks: Songs of the Semi-Detached (Reaktion Books, 2020) and how the band, their origins, and Ray Davies’ lyrics can teach us a lot about both the real and imagined spaces of mid-20th Century England.

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Technology and the Mind w/ Nicholas Carr show art Technology and the Mind w/ Nicholas Carr

The Road to Now

Many of us are beginning to sense that technology is affecting the way we think and interact with one another. How is the internet affecting our brains, and should we be concerned about it? How is the internet different from other media technologies such as print, radio and television? And is google making us stupid? In this episode of the Road to Now, we get the answer from New York Times Best Selling Author Nicholas Carr. (This is a rebroadcast of an episode that originally aired on March 20, 2017)

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#168 Breaking Down the 5G Conspiracy w/ Stacy Wood  show art #168 Breaking Down the 5G Conspiracy w/ Stacy Wood

The Road to Now

As people try to make sense of the Coronavirus epidemic, some have unfortunately turned to conspiracy theories linking Covid-19 to the installation of 5G networks. In this episode, Bob and Ben speak with Stacy Wood about her research on conspiracy theories, the past conspiracy theories that have converged in the 5G theory, and the reasons some people are willing to accept these explanations of the world in spite of strong evidence to the contrary.

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#167 The Outbreak Narrative w/ Priscilla Wald  show art #167 The Outbreak Narrative w/ Priscilla Wald

The Road to Now

Bob & Ben speak with Dr. Priscilla Wald about her research on what she calls the “outbreak narrative” and how understanding it might help us respond better to epidemics in the present.

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#166 Everything’s Going To Be Okay show art #166 Everything’s Going To Be Okay

The Road to Now

Based on what you’ve told us on social media, it’s time for a break from the outbreak. So in this episode, Bob and Ben talk about the French Revolution, nationalism and colonization (aka the books assigned for Bob’s Graduate European History Seminar). They also talk about the art of teaching and Ben’s approach to transitioning to teaching his history classes online (which he recently had to do for an unspecified reason).

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#165 Saving America’s Cities w/ Lizabeth Cohen show art #165 Saving America’s Cities w/ Lizabeth Cohen

The Road to Now

The suburbanization of the American landscape after World War II left the country’s urban centers in crisis. Revitalizing cities was no easy task, and many of the most inspiring plans for reconstructing America’s urban space went unfulfilled. These visions may have never come to fruition, but Lizabeth Cohen says there is much to learn from the visionaries. Dr. Cohen joins us for a conversation about her new book Saving America’s Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban

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#164 What('s) A Disaster show art #164 What('s) A Disaster

The Road to Now

Disasters abound, and what comes next is all about making good decisions. Ben talks about the Nashville tornado of 1998, the Nashville tornado of 2020, and the coronavirus, and Dr. Andy Bruno shares his expertise on the origins of natural disasters and what we can learn from studying them in history.

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More Episodes

When Bill France Sr. founded NASCAR in 1948, his goal was to turn stock car racing from an activity associated with bootlegging roughnecks into a successful spectator sport. To say he accomplished that goal would be an understatement, as the once-regional sport has become one of the most popular in the United States. How did this happen? And how did a competition once associated with outlaws and rogues become one of the most family-friendly sports in modern America? Anyone who knows NASCAR history will tell you that you can’t answer these questions without talking a lot about the Petty Family, and in this episode we do just that. Ladies and gentlemen, in episode #44 of The Road to Now, we talk the history of NASCAR with NASCAR icon Kyle Petty.

Kyle Petty is an American Stock Car racer who earned 173 top-ten finishes and 8 wins in his three decades behind the wheel in NASCAR. The Petty family, which also includes Kyle’s grandfather Lee, his father Richard, and his son, Adam, is unquestionably one of the most significant families in the history of NASCAR. Since retiring in 2008, Kyle began working as a race analyst for top networks, and currently works on pre- and post-race coverage for NBC. Kyle is also the founder of the Kyle Petty Charity Ride Across America, which has raised over $17 million to benefit children’s charities. Since 2004, the ride has benefitted Victory Junction, which was founded to enrich the lives of children suffering from chronic or life-threatening illnesses. Victory Junction was founded by the Petty Family in honor of Kyle’s son Adam, who died tragically on the racetrack in 2000.

For more on this an other episodes of The Road to Now, go to our website: www.theroadtonow.com.

The Road to Now is hosted by Bob Crawford of The Avett Brothers and Dr. Benjamin Sawyer of Middle Tennessee State University, and produced by Bob, Ben and Ian Skotte.