Listening Chronicles #7
Listening Chronicles is a series where I document the podcasts I listen to and those I would recommend
Welcome to the 7th edition of this series ! I am doing this as a way to document the podcasts that I listen to and would suggest people.
This week has been exploring a variety of podcasts. I had to say goodbye to my favourite podcast series, and I was glad to find that a podcast I've been following for a long time started their Season 2, which has kind of filled that hole.
While I post these chronicles in the form of a blog post every time, I am also thinking of converting the same thing into a newsletter - what do you think? Would you subscribe? Well, let me know. I am always open to ideas.
Let's dive in !
Podcasts This Week
City of Women | Movies
I've been waiting for this podcast ever since I found out this was part of the Google Podcast Creator Programme.
On March 1st their trailer dropped. Normally, when stories of women are covered, it's always about the restrictions, rules, and norms imposed upon them. The premise of this podcast tries to flip that on its head. As the hosts describe it "This show isn't about those rules. It's about how they get broken, bent and jumped over when women decide to do things just for themselves." This is a fascinating podcast about how women reclaim spaces in the city for themselves.
The first episode came out last week. It's about cinemas and going to movies. What strikes you when you start listening is the way the audio has been presented (I would urge everyone to listen to this while wearing headphones), it's a fun experience. The sounds of streets, the cheers in the cinema and a range of voices telling you their stories - all of them hook you into the episode.
This first episode walks you through some of the small ways women in Bangalore snuck off to watch movies and enjoy. Listening to this is heartwarming because you get to hear stories about how people find and create joy in their own ways. It's brilliant and the mini-essay over the course of the episode is definitely going to leave you thinking at the end.
I urge all of you to listen to this ! It's worth every minute.
Poetry Unbound | Ada Limón - "Wonder Woman"
Over the last few months, I have been trying to listen/read to more poetry. Poetry Unbound by Pádraig Ó Tuama is probably the best poetry podcast out there. Each episode is reading out a poem, and then the host elaborates the way he thinks about the poem and some of his memories associated with it. It's beautifully written and narrated.
For someone like me, this is a gift. I don't know much about poetry, and every episode of this podcast leaves you in awe.
Season 1 had around 10 episodes, and they had taken a long break.
I am glad they're back ! Check it out ! It's a weekly ritual listening to this podcast. I hope it becomes yours too.
50 Things that Made the Modern Economy | Barcodes and iPhone
Tim Harford around 3 years back started making this series for BBC. It has become a popular book now, but nonetheless the podcast is worth revisiting. Each episode is an economic story about the far-reaching and unexpected consequences of some of humanity's inventions.
They are barely 10 minutes long, and I've started listening to them recently. Each episode weaves together the stories of how these ideas came about, and the impacts they've had on our world. There are over 100 episodes now (I guess the list expanded from 50 things, in order to make two seasons)
I would suggest you start off with iPhones, to get a sense of what the show is about. It'll help you understand how significant of an impact that 2008 Steve Jobs keynote presentation had on the current state of the Internet economy.
These episodes will keep you engaged, and wanting for more !
Anthropocene Reviewed | Plague
This was the last episode, and a goodbye to the podcast. I must say, John Green selected the right topic to end the show with.
This is about the bubonic plague. The stories behind it, and the many worrying aspects of how we're living, not in unprecedented times, but precedented ones. There's a line, which I keep thinking about ever since I heard this episode
"Disease only treats humans equally, only when our social order treats humans equally."
I've written about this podcast in earlier post. It has changed and helped me appreciate and view the world through different lenses. I love these essays, and they've encouraged me to engage with my creative side too. It's unfortunate that it's ending, but I guess there's some solace in the fact that a book version will be out next year.
If there's one podcast that you listen to from this week's list it has to be this one.
Cast from the Past
The Longform Podcast
When I started listening to podcasts early in 2015/16, this was one of the few I started off with. The Longform podcast is easily one of the best interview/conversation podcasts out there. Particularly, if you're the sort of person who is interesting in writing, media, and the stories behind some of the best articles, books and podcasts out there. The basis of the show is essentially the stories behind these publications.
Very recently, I heard a conversation with David Epstein and his book Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World. It's a fascinating conversation that goes beyond what the book is about into, how the writing process is like for such a vast topic and what his journey was like prior to writing this book.
Another reason why I enjoy this podcast is because of the plethora and diverse group of guests on the podcast. Do you want to know about climate change reporting and why we still aren't able to get people to care about climate change? Check out this conversation with Nathaniel Rich.
Do you want to know how people cover terrorism? The risks associated with going into war torn areas, and what the lives of those journalists are like? Check out this 2 part series with Rukmini Callimachi.
Are you more interested in podcasting? Do you want to the stories behind some of the best podcasts/podcasters, you have guests for that too. I particularly enjoyed the one with Ira Glass. There are others out there.
That's it for me for this week !
Again, let me know what podcasts you've been listening to this week ! What do you want me to check out?
Don't forget to share this, and spread the joy of listening to podcasts !