About Zeb Larson

Zeb Larson is a recent graduate of The Ohio State University with a PhD in History. His research deals with the anti-apartheid movement in the United States. To suggest a recent title or to contact him, please send an e-mail to zeb.larson@gmail.com.

NBN Episodes hosted by Zeb:

Daniel Immerwahr, "How to Hide an Empire: The History of the Greater United States" (FSG, 2019)

February 11, 2024

How to Hide an Empire

Daniel Immerwahr
Hosted by Zeb Larson

“Is America an Empire?” is a popular question for pundits and historians, likely because it sets off such a provocative debate. All too often, however…

Robert B. Rakove, "Days of Opportunity: The United States and Afghanistan Before the Soviet Invasion" (Columbia UP, 2023)

December 3, 2023

Days of Opportunity

Robert B. Rakove
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Long before the 1979 Soviet invasion, the United States was closely concerned with Afghanistan. For much of the twentieth century, American diplomats,…

Ismay Milford, "African Activists in a Decolonising World: The Making of an Anticolonial Culture, 1952-1966" (Cambridge UP, 2023)

July 25, 2023

African Activists in a Decolonising World

Ismay Milford
Hosted by Zeb Larson

As wars of liberation in Africa and Asia shook the post-war world, a cohort of activists from East and Central Africa, specifically the region encompa…

Gene Zubovich, "Before the Religious Right: Liberal Protestants, Human Rights, and the Polarization of the United States" (U Pennsylvania Press, 2022)

March 16, 2022

Before the Religious Right

Gene Zubovich
Hosted by Zeb Larson

The study of the religious right has in many ways overshadowed other strands of U.S. religious history in the 20th century. This is owe…

Mark Atwood Lawrence, "The End of Ambition: The United States and the Third World in the Vietnam Era" (Princeton UP, 2021)

October 6, 2021

The End of Ambition

Mark Atwood Lawrence
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Histories of the Vietnam War are not in short supply. In U.S. history, it ranks alongside the Civil War and World War Two in terms of author coverage.…

Antonio Tomas, "Amlicar Cabral: The Life of a Reluctant Nationalist" (Oxford UP, 2020)

September 29, 2021

Amlicar Cabral

Antonio Tomas
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Amilcar Cabral was one of the most significant African nationalists of his generation. Born in the Cape Verde Islands, Cabral led the African Party fo…

Richard Lachmann, "First Class Passengers on a Sinking Ship: Elite Politics and the Decline of Great Powers" (Verso, 2020)

February 2, 2021

First Class Passengers on a Sinking Ship

Richard Lachmann
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Being a great power almost seems to invite discussion of decline: whether you are declining, what can be done to prevent or arrest it, and…

Michael Brenes, "For Might and Right: Cold War Defense Spending and the Remaking of American Democracy" (U Massachusetts Press, 2020)

December 3, 2020

For Might and Right

Michael Brenes
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Donald Trump campaigned on a great many things in 2016, but one of the issues he used to criticize Democrats was their role in supporting …

Michael Fischbach, "The Movement and the Middle East: How the Arab-Israeli Conflict Divided the American Left" (Stanford UP, 2019)

March 30, 2020

The Movement and the Middle East

Michael Fischbach
Hosted by Zeb Larson

One of the most divisive international issues in American politics today is over Israel and Palestine. The close ties between Israel and the United St…

Eddie Michel, "The White House and White Africa" (Routledge, 2018)

February 19, 2020

The White House and White Africa

Eddie Michel
Hosted by Zeb Larson

The Rhodesian Unilateral Declaration of Independence was one of the last crises of formal imperialism. British settlers in present-day Zimbabwe, then …

K. Linder et al., "Going Alt-Ac: A Guide to Alternative Academic Careers" (Stylus Publishing, 2020)

January 30, 2020

Going Alt-Ac

Kathryn E. Linder, Kevin Kelly, Thomas J. Tobin
Hosted by Zeb Larson

If you’re a grad student facing the ugly reality of finding a tenure-track job, you could easily be forgiven for thinking about a career change. Howev…

Beth Fischer, "The Myth of Triumphalism: Rethinking President Reagan's Cold War Legacy" (UP of Kentucky, 2019)

December 23, 2019

The Myth of Triumphalism

Beth Fischer
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Every time that I teach any portion of a course dealing with Ronald Reagan and the end of the Cold War, I gird myself for the inevitable myth-busting …

Matthew Lockwood, "To Begin The World Over Again: How the American Revolution Devastated the Globe" (Yale UP, 2019)

December 20, 2019

To Begin The World Over Again

Matthew Lockwood
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Growing up as an American, you’re bound to be all-but-suffused with triumphalist histories of the American Revolution. Those histories might have a to…

Sara Lorenzini, "Global Development: A Cold War History" (Princeton UP, 2019)

November 7, 2019

Global Development

Sara Lorenzini
Hosted by Zeb Larson

As Dr. Sara Lorenzini points out in her new book Global Development: A Cold War History (Princeton University Press, 2019), the idea of economic devel…

Henning Melber, "Dag Hammarskjöld, the United Nations, and the Decolonisation of Africa" (Hurst, 2019)

October 21, 2019

Dag Hammarskjöld, the United Nations, and the Decolonisation of Africa

Henning Melber
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Dag Hammarskjold was such a dynamic secretary-general that for years, the motto about him was simply “Leave it to Dag.” Only the second person to hold…

David Stenner, "Globalizing Morocco: Transnational Activism and the Postcolonial State" (Stanford UP, 2019)

July 29, 2019

Globalizing Morocco

David Stenner
Hosted by Zeb Larson

The story of Morocco’s independence struggle against France and Spain is a complicated one. Because it occurred around the same time of the long-runni…

Petra Goedde, "The Politics of Peace: A Global Cold War History" (Oxford UP, 2019)

July 5, 2019

The Politics of Peace

Petra Goedde
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Earlier histories of the Cold War haven’t exactly been charitable toward the peace activists and pacifists who led peace initiatives. Pacifists in the…

Sarah Miller-Davenport, "Gateway State: Hawai’i and the Cultural Transformation of American Empire" (Princeton UP, 2019)

May 21, 2019

Gateway State

Sarah Miller-Davenport
Hosted by Zeb Larson

One of my talking points when hanging out with my fellow diplomatic historians is the painful absence of scholarship on Hawaii. Too many political his…

Elizabeth Schmidt, "Foreign Intervention in Africa after the Cold War: Sovereignty, Responsibility, and the War on Terror" (Ohio UP, 2018)

April 15, 2019

Foreign Intervention in Africa after the Cold War

Dr. Elizabeth Schmidt
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Of all the blank spots in the mental maps of many Americans, Africa is one of the largest. Informed by a number of misconceptions and popular myths, k…

Nico Slate, "Lord Cornwallis is Dead: The Struggle for Democracy in the United States and India" (Harvard UP, 2019)

March 12, 2019

Lord Cornwallis is Dead

Nico Slate
Hosted by Zeb Larson

In the twenty-first century, India and the United States are two closely connected states. Some of this is economic, and with it comes a concern that …

Michael Fischbach, "Black Power and Palestine: Transnational Countries of Color" (Stanford UP, 2018)

January 4, 2019

Black Power and Palestine

Michael Fischbach
Hosted by Zeb Larson

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the great animating foreign policy issues of the twenty-first century, one that provokes fierce divisions a…

Hannah Holleman, "Dust Bowls of Empire: Imperialism, Environmental Politics, and the Injustice of 'Green' Capitalism" (Yale UP, 2018)

December 17, 2018

Dust Bowls of Empire

Hannah Holleman
Hosted by Zeb Larson

None of the climate news that we’re getting is good right now, especially now that a number of governments are reversing or failing to meet commitment…

Zachary Lechner, "The South of the Mind: American Imaginings of White Southernness, 1960–1980" (U Georgia Press, 2018)

October 31, 2018

The South of the Mind

Zachary Lechner
Hosted by Zeb Larson

When talking about the American South in the second half of the twentieth century, popular discourse tended to fall into one of three camps (on occasi…

Megan Black, "The Global Interior: Mineral Frontiers and American Power" (Harvard UP, 2018)

October 2, 2018

The Global Interior

Megan Black
Hosted by Zeb Larson

Of all of the departments of the U.S. government you might expect to be implicated in the exercise of imperialism, the Department of the Interior migh…