A Walk Through the 20th Century

A Walk Through the 20th Century with Bill MoyersCountless observers have attempted to make sense of the last century — a time of rampant technological change, wild economic fluctuations, two world wars, two remarkable Roosevelts, and at least two homicidal dictators bent on world domination.

Only a few historians and journalists have succeeded in developing a full-fledged portrayal of the period, and no one has woven a tapestry of greater depth and richness than Bill Moyers, the driving force behind this classic 19-part series. Brimming with archival images and footage derived from exacting research, these programs have little to do with the charts and timelines of routine history lessons but instead represent both a shrewd analysis of major events and a poetic chronicle of the century.

Extra: Read a 1982 review of the series in The Christian Science Monitor. (1982-1984)

  • April 14, 1983 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers examines the growth of mass communication and the birth of the concept of public relations.
  • January 11, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers visits his hometown. Long-time residents describe the town as being "a Tom Sawyer sort of place" on one hand and a town formerly divided by racial segregation on the other.
  • January 25, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Theodore Roosevelt was a cowboy, soldier, explorer, hunter, historian, reformer, naturalist and president of the United States. Bill Moyers explores TR's brief and golden career.
  • February 22, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    BIll Moyers looks at how newsreels grew into a unique 20th-century institution that informed and entertained whole generations.
  • April 4, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    From the Chicago World’s Fair of 1893 to the 1982 celebration in Knoxville, a look at the ways these global festivities have reflected America’s changing views about the future.
  • May 9, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Two motion picture experts -- Frank Capra and Fritz Hippler -- on the war they waged through film.
  • May 30, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers speaks with news correspondent Richard Strout, who covered Washington and the White House from 1925 until his retirement in 1984.
  • June 20, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers reports on how the US in the 1950's was an era of American conformity, in which fitting in led to a hostility and distrust of those who stood out.
  • July 11, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers explores how America’s Depression-era growth of government made Washington the center for the nation’s recovery and a purveyor of hope to millions.
  • July 25, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers interviews I. I. Rabi, winner of the 1944 Nobel Prize in physics and an early developer of radar for use in World War II.
  • August 22, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers and his guests look past the nostalgia and talk about the poverty, racial segregation and political scandals of the 1920s.
  • September 5, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    A portrait of the people who worked in the coal mines of Colorado in the early 20th century.
  • September 19, 1984 | A Walk Through the 20th Century
    Bill Moyers looks at how TV both reflected and influenced the chaotic era of the 1960's in America.