281 – England

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The last couple of episodes have focused on the political tools that AEthelstan had at his disposal. Marriage alliances, fostering, dynastic cults and diplomatic entreaties were all powerful pieces moving on a huge dark age chess board. And the thing I want you to realize about these things is first, that they took time. A strategic mind - a mind like AEthelstan’s - would see the long game and set his moves accordingly knowing they wouldn’t fully materialize for years to come. The second is that these tools were highly cultural. There’s nothing inherently political about marriage or fostering until a people make it so. By examining the tools that political actors wield we learn something important about the culture and society that underlies it. What it values, and how it prioritizes people and things.

And all of these slow, important tools are working constantly in the background throughout AEthelstan’s reign.

Click here to be able to read the full rough transcript.

  3 Replies to “281 – England”

  1. listener
    June 13, 2018 at 11:19 am

    The website linked to doesn’t seem to be showing any content besides the header-picture?

    • June 13, 2018 at 11:21 am

      Hmmm, I just tested it and it worked for me. Perhaps use a different browser or refresh and give the page longer to load?

  2. sean zeitler
    June 13, 2018 at 11:50 am

    I voted for you. :)

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