Finneran's Wake

Show Notes

The Pop Historian is a general historian with an exciting, eclectic new channel on YouTube. 

“The historian must serve two masters: the past and the present”. 

In compliance with Fritz Stern, the late German-American professor of history at Columbia University by whom the above statement was issued, the Pop Historian has undergone to do just that. In a highly original, accessible, and entertaining way, he has packaged fascinating bits of history in a series of compelling videos, using the technology of today to tell great stories from the past. 

From this episode, you’ll learn…

The advantages of homeschooling for the curious mind; the importance of learning about different faiths as a child; the role that video games (like Assassin’s Creed) can play in instructing you in history; the potential of virtual reality, both for education and entertainment; the reliability of Wikipedia; the necessity of “transhistorical” sympathy; the difficulties in becoming a documentarian; Hitler and the Third Reich; George Washington and whether he should be celebrated or condemned, and much more! 

0:00 Introduction
2:54 Home School v. Private School
5:15 Passover in a Universal Church 
9:56 Assassin’s Creed: Do video games have a role in teaching history? 
15:12 Virtual Reality: Entertainment and education 
21:17 Wikipedia: is it a reliable source? 
23:15 Becoming a documentarian 
26:46 Hitler and the rise of the Third Reich 
28:25 “Trans-historical” empathy and the moral superiority of today
33:06 Slavery
34:29 George Washington: Do we condemn or celebrate him? 
39:22 A Christian outlook on history
42:01 How one becomes interested in different subjects
46:02 The history of Tourism
49:51 Traveling the world
53:08 Book recommendations
56:43 How to begin making content on YouTube


The Pop Historian’s Page:

Works mentioned: 
The World at War (Documentary) 
Assassin's Creed (Game) 
All Tomorrows (Book) 
The Children of Men (Book)


Finneran’s Wake
Listen to this and all episodes on your favorite podcast streaming service: 

Please, don’t hesitate to leave a comment or send me a message (to which, I assure you, I’ll promptly respond!) 
Twitter: @DanielEFinneran

Email me at 

What is Finneran's Wake?

Finneran’s Wake – where the ART OF CONVERSATION lives. Where no topic is untouchable, no idea inadmissible, and no one too heretical to be heard.

In this age of ineloquence, this dark decade of intolerance, we’ve all forgotten how to talk and, more importantly, how to listen. I hope, on this channel, to rehabilitate and refine these two neglected acts.

As the great French essayist Montaigne once said, “To my taste, the most fruitful and natural exercise of our minds is conversation. I find the practice of it the most delightful activity in our lives”.

I agree. And so, I welcome you to join me. Let us exercise our minds together. Let us practice this delightful activity as friends. Let us engage, now and forever, in the art of conversation.