Listening Chronicles #13
A series documenting some thoughts on the podcasts I've been listening to and those I would recommend
Welcome to the 13th edition of the Listening Chronicles ! I’m recommending and documenting thoughts on some episodes I’ve heard over the last month or so (I’m not keeping count).
I hope you are safe and well.
I’ve been on a slump of sorts when it comes to podcast listening. Mathematically, my average listening time has reduces from an hour per day to something like 15 minutes in two days now. I recognise I’m falling into the endless scrolling trap. Seems like the things I’m doing aren’t worthwhile. There’s a lot of calculations going on in my head about the current times we’re living in, which is often paralysing.
I’m trying to correct that. Started switching to listening to podcasts before I sleep again instead of rummaging through the death tolls in different states for that particular day.
Podcasts That I Listened To
Land of The Giants | The Google Empire
So, I finished Season 3 about the Google. I’ve written before about how this is a really well produced and reported series - their episodes on Netflix and Amazon are great.
It’s a 7 episode series that starts with the origins of Google, and goes all the way up to its current problems - of employees critiquing the functioning, of being a monopoly, of having too much power.
I don’t know if I’ll ever be reading a book on Google, yet. This podcast series is like a great way of a deep dive into everything related to how Google works, what is its history and place in our modern world.
A piece of thought to keep in mind while listening to this is that, they won’t be able to cover everything about Google.
You’re Wrong About | Enron and Political Correctness
I came across this podcast on another newsletter (Listen to This). At the moment, I’m trying to go through their entire backlog because it’s just that good. I’m done with 3 episodes. These two are ones I would sincerely recommend.
To explain the premise a bit - both of the hosts (Sarah Marshall and Michael Hobbes) are journalists and writers. Each episode, one of them does a deep dive about the topic at hand and explains to the other who comes to the episode only with their personal knowledge and nothing else.
What ensues is a poignant history lesson. Not just about the topic at hand, but about what and how we remember, how the media reacted during that time period, the benefit of hindsight and the lessons that you can take about how to be mindful when you are trying to learn about something.
To quote from the newsletter by Nidhi Kinhal who recommended this,
"It dissects how knowledge, information, research debates and media work, so you emerge with little hacks for what you’re told and what you see around.”
These two episodes - about the Enron Scam in the early 2000s, and the Political Correctness moral panic in liberal universities of the USA during the 90s. I know the lens is the past and the perspective is USA, but you’ll be able to relate a lot of what happened in the past to even our present day realities.
Definitely worth checking out !
The Anthropocene Reviewed | Penguins of Madagascar and Small Pox Vaccine
Anthropocene Reviewed has been my favourite podcast through 2019 and 2020. It went on a break for a while, and is back with 4 more episodes !
This episode is John Green’s thoughts on the opening sequence of Penguins of Madagascar - trust me, it’s really nice.
It’s also about the small pox, about how it took global collaboration and empathy to solve that crisis, and why we’ll need more of that even during our current one. Got me emotional, this episode.
That’s it for this small edition.
I’ll be back earlier for sure. In a time of chaos and constant sense of feeling lost, just writing this edition has given me some semblance of direction. Expect more in the near future !
Do let me know what podcast episodes you’ve liked over the last few weeks. What should I check out? And, well - is there anything you want me to write about?
Take care, and stay safe.