Students and teachers of history, enthusiasts of speechmaking, and folks needing something different to spice up those mix tapes with will enjoy this inspired four-disc tour of a century. It's a bit heavy on events a baby boomer is most likely to be interested in, but there's nothing wrong with knowing one's audience. For the most part, these recordings make 20th-century history appear to be happening right now. It might sound clichd, but it really is a thrill to hear history in the making: Woodrow Wilson lying to the American Indians, Gloria Steinem addressing the National Organization for Women, the launch of sputnik, Dr. King delivering the "I Have a Dream" speech with intense clarity and emotion, Kennedy delivering his infamous address to the nation after being sworn in, the very first recording ever made on an Edison phonograph, Nixon resigning in shame, Hitler hatefully ranting about Germanic expansionism, Malcolm X powerfully speaking on black power, Babe Ruth saying good-bye to baseball, and Neil Armstrong uttering those famous words as he first steps onto the moon. --Mike McGonigal
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