By the way, I've launched a new podcast called Context!

What led to the rise of the modern world? How have we made so much progress? These are the questions I explore in my work. How It Began has functioned as my argument for two claims: progress and modernity are real, and the historical factors that have made them possible are sacred. It’s shocking to me how contested these two claims have become within academia. In my new podcast, Context, I focus on how other scholars have developed their own insights on the rise of the modern world. There are countless great books on this topic... we know we should read them, but most of us don't have time. Join me on the new podcast as I distill their insights in a captivating, accessible way. I'll see you there!

History At Its Best

History At Its Best

Let your mind travel with me as I plunge us into history through a narrative rich in music and sound. In each episode, we will fly through the centuries to follow the seeds of an innovation or discovery as it blossoms into one of the many fruits of modernity. From technological advancements like the development of electricity, to medical advancements like safe and painless surgery, to cultural advancements like dog domestication, we will come to revere the dramatic history behind what we take for granted in the 21st century.
Prepare yourself. This is the new history podcast.

Who Am I?

Who Am I?

After earning my PhD in the history of science and technology at Stanford University, I left academia to work in the tech industry, but that sojourn only increased my passion for history. Instead of re-entering academia, I felt podcasting was a better way to reach people with history that can inspire the best in us. So here I am! And I'm only just getting started. How It Began has gone dormant for now, but I continue to release episodes of my new podcast, which you can check out here:

Context with Brad Harris

To Make A Show

To Make A Show

Every single podcast is the product of scholarly due diligence, including weeks of extensive research, writing, and producing. I strive to make sure my content is both enlightening and engaging, appealing to subject experts and laypeople alike. I am devoted to distilling the massive complexity of history into the meaningful coherence of stories that stay with us. And while there may be much in the modern world to inspire our condemnation and even cynicism, my style is to focus on highlighting the good and the true in humanity’s efforts through the ages.

How It Began: A History Of The Modern World.


Available On:

Apple Podcasts                      



   on Apple Podcasts

“I don’t normally write reviews, but I have derived so much value from this podcast that I had no choice. … Each and every episode has been absolutely fantastic and I could not recommend this more highly. … Ultimately, this is the main reason I open the app at all. Brad, keep it up!”

“Brad Harris taught one of my favorite courses at Stanford. And wow! This podcast does not disappoint. … Brad approaches this podcast with the same academic vigor you would expect of a Stanford historian. … Add this to your list, folks. You will enjoy.”

“It’s almost unfair how well produced and interesting this podcast is. … Brad Harris might have one of the best voices I’ve ever heard. … The topics are incredibly interesting and offer insights I hadn’t thought of.”

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