Will you remember to set your clock back on Saturday night for Daylight Saving’s Time? We might all be better about that if we knew why we were doing it!
What you may not know is that daylight savings time has a bizarre history, and it does not include the urban legend revolving around creating more time for farm chores.
The history of daylight savings time is actually a radical, social construction started in 1918 for a different, amazing reason altogether.
First, enjoy this great little vignette narrated by British comedic actor, Steven Fry…
I loved that little piece, but it left me hanging, so I found us another that puts this issue in a way that’s really relevant to what we face every spring and fall:
In short, time is an abstract scheme that’s been sliced and diced by dozens of crazy transitions in history.
Although those first videos were fun, I was still left with a lot of questions, and then I remembered a podcast I heard that covered this issue in a fascinating and entertaining way. I’ve been meaning to share this podcast with visitors to EWC so today we’ll cover the history of time, and introduce you to a fun group of historians who bring this kind of thing alive!
They’ll take us on a little journey through the history of our relationship with time.
If you want to really enjoy about 45 minutes of blissful, entertaining, and fun insight, take a listen to the following podcast:
It seems that randomness sits at the heart of all time-related things.
Isn’t it a bit strange that we all still honor daylight savings time so unquestioningly!? The American History Guys’ BackStory podcast raises so many fun questions about what’s real when it comes to time… it seems like a grand construct with a million masters!
And if you enjoyed the podcast by the radio group The American History Guys and their BackStory program, check out their website for more shows.
Even though I’m not a history buff, I listen to Back Story when it’s broadcast on our local NPR station in Vermont, early Sunday mornings when the house is quiet and I’m just starting to mill around with a cup of coffee.
The historians are so authentic and easy to follow that it’s like having coffee with a really smart friend.
You never know what topic they will dig into next. And I’ve never heard an episode that didn’t leave my perspective transformed. Another podcast of theirs that I found fascinating and entertaining was one called The History of Trash.
Stay open, curious and optimistic!
~ Dr. Lynda
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- “Stephen Fry on the History of Daylight Saving Time – BBC IWonder.” YouTube. BBC, 27 Mar. 2015. Web. 31 Oct. 2016. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZLfOCnhQK8>. ↩
- “How To Sound Smart About Daylight Savings Time.” YouTube. ThinkTank, 03 Mar. 2015. Web. 31 Oct. 2016. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m00XDlY9B58>. ↩
- Engebretson, Jess, Chioke L’Anson, and Eric Mennel, prods. “On the Clock: A (Brief) History of Time.” BackStory. 6 Mar. 2015. BackStory with the American History Guys. Web. 31 Oct. 2016. <http://backstoryradio.org/shows/on-the-clock-4/>. ↩