90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Vikings! On And Off Screen

Reimagining the Vikings, where history meets drama.

From the new History channel series "Vikings"

From the new History channel series “Vikings”

Picture the Vikings, and you’re instantly riding a lot of poetry and imagination.  They didn’t leave texts behind.  Anthropologists didn’t visit.  Their runes are a riddle.

But that didn’t stop balladeers and Wagner from painting the picture.  Bearded warriors from the North, in long ships and horned helmets.  Except they didn’t wear horned helmets, we’re told.

Pillagers and wayfarers, savages and tech innovators.  A new historical drama lets the Vikings sail again.

This hour, On Point:  the Vikings, in our imaginations and in history.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Michael Hirst, creator and writer of the new History channel historical drama “Vikings”, which debuts on Sunday.

Anders Winroth, professor of medieval history at Yale University. Author of “The Conversion of Scandinavia: Vikings, Merchants, and Missionaries in the Remaking of Northern Europe.”

From Tom’s Reading List

The New York Times “They are akin to NASA astronauts or the pioneers of Silicon Valley — except they lived 1,300 years ago, and it was the high seas that demanded navigation, not outer space or the Internet. The Vikings, who like those later explorers were driven by curiosity and armed with the latest innovations, also set out to conquer an uncharted world, the breadth and possibilities of which could not be entirely conceived.”

Los Angeles Times “Have the Vikings gotten a bum rap? At least according to popular imagination, they were fearsome barbarians in horned helmets who pillaged their way across Northern Europe during the Dark Ages. And while it’s true these seafaring Norsemen were hardly a bunch of peaceniks, the new History scripted series “Vikings” will attempt to bring some nuance to the caricature of the bearded brutes when it premieres Sunday.”

Trailer for the New “Vikings” Series

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Oct 22, 2014
Health workers carry the body of a woman suspected of contracting the Ebola virus in Bomi county situated on the outskirts of Monrovia, Liberia, Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. (AP)

We’ll go to Liberia, and hear from a pastor and a physician at the epicenter of the Ebola crisis.

Oct 22, 2014
Authors Nicholas Kristof and wife Sheryl WuDunn attend the premiere of "Meena" at the AMC Loews Theater on Thursday, June 26, 2014 in New York.

Author and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof says regular folks like us can change the world. He explains how. Plus: we remember the late, great Washington Post editor, Ben Bradlee.

RECENT
SHOWS
Oct 21, 2014
This undated image provided by Google, shows an early version of Google's prototype self-driving car. For the first time, California's Department of Motor Vehicles knows how many self-driving cars are traveling on the state's public roads. The agency is issuing permits, Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014 that let three companies test 29 vehicles on highways and in neighborhoods. (AP)

The future of the car: from the fuels they’ll run on, to the materials they’ll be made of, to the computers that may drive them.

 
Oct 21, 2014
David Perdue, Michelle Nunn

Two weeks to go till Midterm Election Day. We’ll look at how the biggest issues are playing out around the country.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Introducing The Explicast: A New Podcast From On Point Radio
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

Confused about the news? Don’t worry: so are we sometimes! Introducing a new On Point Radio podcast: The Explicast. You can find Episode One right here.

More »
1 Comment
 
Two LIVE Tracks From Jazz Violinist Regina Carter
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

Regina Carter shares two live tracks — one arrangement, and one original composition — with Tom Ashbrook in the On Point studio.

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: October 17, 2014
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

We talk Facebook mishaps, whether Katy Perry was actually right and the glory of architectural giants and their iconic windows.

More »
Comment