About Nathan Bierma

NBN Episodes hosted by Nathan:

Kathryn Holliday, "The Open-Ended City: David Dillon on Texas Architecture" (U Texas Press, 2019)

December 2, 2019

The Open-Ended City

Kathryn Holliday
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

It may only be a slight exaggeration to say that one of David Dillon's career accomplishments was to put the words "Dallas" and "architecture" in the …

Gregory Borchard, "A Narrative History of the American Press" (Routledge, 2018)

July 18, 2019

A Narrative History of the American Press

Gregory Borchard
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

The American press is older than the United States itself. Ever since its catalytic role in the American Revolution, journalism has evolved to meet ch…

Gregory H. Wolf, "Wrigley Field: The Friendly Confines at Clark and Addison" (SABR, 2019)

June 25, 2019

Wrigley Field

Gregory H. Wolf
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

Wrigley Field is one of a handful of sports stadiums to have transcended its athletic purpose to become a true American landmark. Nestled in its neigh…

Sara K. Eskridge, "Rube Tube: CBS and Rural Comedy in the Sixties" (U Missouri Press, 2019)

June 14, 2019

Rube Tube

Sara K. Eskridge
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

The television comedies of the 1960s set in the American South epitomize American innocence. But in their original historical, social, and commercial …

Tom Wheeler, "From Gutenberg to Google: The History of Our Future" (Brookings Institution Press, 2019)

March 27, 2019

From Gutenberg to Google

Tom Wheeler
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

It's easy to get sidetracked while writing a book. But imagine being interrupted by the President of the United States. That happened to Tom Wheeler, …

Keith Gave, "The Russian Five: A Story of Espionage, Defection, Bribery and Courage" (Gold Star Publishing, 2018)

March 19, 2019

The Russian Five

Keith Gave
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

Keith Gave spent six years in the NSA during the Cold War, but his most daring mission may have come later, while working as a sports writer. In the l…

James Schwoch, "Wired into Nature: The Telegraph and the North American Frontier" (U Illinois Press, 2018)

March 6, 2019

Wired into Nature

Jim Schwoch
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

It's been called the first Internet. In the nineteenth century, the telegraph spun a world wide web of cables and poles, carrying electronic signals w…

Peter Hopsicker and Mark Dyreson, "A Half Century of Super Bowls: National and Global Perspectives on America's Grandest Spectacle" (Routledge, 2018)

January 31, 2019

A Half Century of Super Bowls

Peter Hopsicker and Mark Dyreson
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

The Super Bowl is a singular spectacle in American culture. More than just a championship football game, the Super Bowl has become an unparalleled dis…

Tison Pugh, "The Queer Fantasies of the American Family Sitcom" (Rutgers UP, 2018)

December 18, 2018

The Queer Fantasies of the American Family Sitcom

Tison Pugh
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

Perhaps no form of popular art has appeared as poised to resist subversive sexual themes as the television situation comedy. But Tison Pugh writes tha…

Robert C. Trumpbour and Kenneth Womack, "The Eighth Wonder of the World: The Life of Houston's Iconic Astrodome" (U Nebraska Press, 2016)

December 12, 2018

The Eighth Wonder of the World

Robert C. Trumpbour and Kenneth Womack
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

It rose against the Texas sun in all its architectural audacity: a domed stadium big enough to cover a baseball field. When it opened in 1965, the Hou…

Jack David Eller, "Inventing American Tradition: From the Mayflower to Cinco de Mayo" (Reaktion Books, 2018)

November 19, 2018

Inventing American Tradition

Jack David Eller
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

Americans gathering for Thanksgiving this week may assume they are continuing an unbroken chain of tradition that traces directly back to Massachusett…

Mark Polizzotti, "Sympathy for the Traitor: A Translation Manifesto" (MIT Press, 2018)

November 14, 2018

Sympathy for the Traitor

Mark Polizzotti
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

The success of a translator may seem to lie in going unnoticed: the translator ducks out of the spotlight so that the original author may shine. M…

Chris Horrocks, "The Joy of Sets: A Short History of the Television" (Reaktion Press, 2017)

November 8, 2018

The Joy of Sets

Chris Horrocks
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

Television started as a dream of nineteenth-century science fiction. It took its place in the twentieth-century home, and became a fixture of family l…

Kathryn Fuller-Seeley, "Jack Benny and the Golden Age of American Radio Comedy" (U California Press, 2017)

October 19, 2018

Jack Benny and the Golden Age of American Radio Comedy

Kathryn Fuller-Seeley
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

Jack Benny was one of the first crossover stars in broadcast comedy, rising from the vaudeville circuit to star in radio, film, and te…

Deborah Jaramillo, "The Television Code: Regulating the Screen to Safeguard the Industry" (U Texas Press, 2018)

October 9, 2018

The Television Code

Deborah Jaramillo
Hosted by Nathan Bierma

If you watch old movies or study film history, you may know that early 20th-century Hollywood operated under the Motion Picture Production Code, which…