BBC Radio's From Our Own Correspondent (previously on Metafilter) turns 60 this month. To celebrate, they've released several special editions: the first ever UK edition; a discussion panel on foreign reporting's past, present and future (includes a thoughtful discussion of how much a reporter's personal point of view should inform their reporting); and a compilation of notable stories from the past 60 years.
Reclaiming the Nerdiverse [NSFW audio] is a fascinating hour-long discussion about women in science fiction and fantasy on the late night edition of the venerable BBC radio show Woman's Hour (podcast link). The host is Lauren Laverne, and her guests are author and game designer Naomi Alderman, journalist Helen Lewis, sociologist Linda Woodhead, fantasy novelist Zen Cho, and cosplayer and writer Lucy Saxon. The discussion takes in everything from 70s feminist writers to alpha/beta/omega slash fiction to cosplay etiquette to geek sexism. The Late Night Woman's Hour has been the topic of some discussion in Britain.
The BBC will be covering World War One in great detail over the next four years. They've already started, with podcasts, interactive guides, online courses, programs new and old plus much, much more. Perhaps it's best to start at the beginning, with Professor Margaret MacMillan's Countdown to World War One (podcast link) or the account of her fellow historian Christopher Clark, Month of Madness. Of course, how the war started is still contested by historians, as recounted in The Great War of Words. The latter two are also part of the main WWI podcast. Or you can dive into the Music and Culture section, go through an A-Z guide or look at comics drawn by modern cartoonists.
The Kincaid Weekender presents local news, politics, sports, theatre reviews, and keeps you up to date with goings on at the stockyards. A pitch-perfect comedic take on small town New Zealand. Dryer than Flight of the Conchords, subtler than Night Vale. Produced for the 2014 New Zealand Fringe Festival and written by award-worthy comedian Jonny Potts.
Scratchy Grooves For almost twenty years, starting in 1984, Bill Chambless on WVUD-FM at the University of Delaware, explored the pop music of 1900 to 1940 on vintage recordings, "scratches and all." Stream the shows at this website, migrated from the original cassette tapes and maintained by his son.
Formed in NYC in 1997, the Moth celebrates the art of story through performances of true, first-person stories without notes in front of a live audience. Stories are told by celebrities including Steve Burns dealing with his fame and DMC of Run-DMC discussing how Sarah McLachan helped him overcome his depression as well as everyday people like: a research scientist detailing her relationship with her parrot and a woman with CP falling in love for the first time. These stories are recounted in several cities across the USA and are later disseminated through weekly podcasts, a weekly radio show distributed by public radio stations (requires a free account), and a book out today. An interview with George Dawes Green, novelist, and Founder of the Moth from the Rumpus. More stories are available on youtube and their website.
Sound Opinions, the ever-excellent radio show / podcast based out of Chicago, have embarked on a 'world tour'. With the aid of a local musician or journalist, each episode covers the history of modern music in a certain country. They look at what's new and exciting in both the mainstream and underground as well as what foreign music is cracking the market. So far the tour has touched down in Mexico, Japan and Sweden, and Greg & Jim are encouraging feedback on where they should go next. [more inside]
In the pre-podcast days of 1999, the then Sci-Fi Channel website worked with the Seeing Ear Theater and Bablyon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski to produce a series of Twilight Zone-inspired radio stories called "City Of Dreams" along with a cast that included Steve Buscemi, Tim Curry, Kevin Conway, and John Turturro. 13 episodes were planned, but only 8 got produced, and with the decline of Real Player and the Seeing Ear Theater, the episodes were thought to be lost to the mists of internet history. Until someone uploaded all of them to Youtube. (each episode about 30 min, link goes to the first video for the episode) The Damned Are Playing At Godzilla's Tonight!. Rolling Thunder .The Friends Of Jackie Clay . The Tolling Of The Hour. Night Calls. Samuel Becket, Your Ride Is Here. The Alpha And Omega Of David Wells . MSCD 00121J [more inside]
British comedian Josie Long explores All the Planet's Wonders in a very short series on BBC radio: Collecting. Animals. Astronomy. Plants.
The Value of Culture is a five part BBC radio series by Melvyn Bragg (which can be downloaded as a podcast) which explores the modern concept of 'culture' from its roots in mid-19th Century Britain, specifically Matthew Arnold's Culture and Anarchy and Edward Burnett Tylor's Primitive Culture (vol. 2), and exploring the discourse and uses of the concept until the present day. There are five episodes, each a little over forty minutes long, focusing in turn on Arnold and the roots of the concept of culture, Tylor and the anthropological conception of culture, C. P. Snow and the 'Two Cultures' debate, mass culture and culture studies, and then ending with a debate on the value of culture today.
"I have thrown a terrarium of land crabs on the floor at a party in a drunken rage, I have known regret. "
Actor and writer James Urbaniak (Venture Brothers, American Splendor) has a wry, occasionally upsetting "fictional podcast" with every episode written by a new author. Getting On With James Urbaniak.
Hosted by three professors of US history (one a specialist in the 18th Century, one in the 19th, and one in the 20th), each episode of the radio show and podcast Backstory takes a subject from the news and looks at the American history behind it. [more inside]
Here is the Shep of the Day podcast: bringing you something that Jean Shepherd said this day on the radio. (Actually, sometimes a whole show.)
Humble & Fred do a podcast. Big deal, you say? The bigger story is that they're fairly well known mainstream radio guys in the Toronto area, who have been in the business for decades, but after some recent firings have decided to give full time podcasting a try. And they're making a pretty big splash so far. [more inside]
Snap Judgement is a radio show airing on NPR stations; you can also listen to all of it online or via iTunes. The show bills itself as "storytelling with a beat". [more inside]
Stuck on a train for an hour every day and sick of sudoku? Hands love to knit but the brain gets bored? Riding out the recession as a streetcorner sign-twirler? Or maybe you've just got a burning desire for "cultural conversation of the depth you demand." If so, then Metafilter's own Colin Marshall has got what you need at the Marketplace of Ideas. [more inside]
"For about six months now, Sound of Young America editor Nick White and I (Jesse Thorn) have been working on a secret project. Now, the secret can be revealed... please welcome WTF with Marc Maron, the public radio series!" [more inside]
Rob Walker, who writes the "Consumed" column for the New York Times Magazine, talks with Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich about the whys and wherefores of their popular WNYC science radio show and podcast, RadioLab.
The Department. Regular listeners to The Bugle (previously) will have been missing their usual weekly dose of historico-politico-silliness. But there is a fallback. [more inside]
Shows like This American Life, All Things Considered, and similar stalwarts of Public Radio in the UK, Australia, and Canada have combined with the explosion of podcastery to inspire hordes of (fantastic) imitators. The result? An irresistable smorgasbord of intellectual content. Bill Mckibben examines the history of the trend, and how it can be maintained. [more inside]
Bridge to Somewhere: Lessons from the New Deal, an American RadioWorks documentary, chronicles Roosevelt's recovery-through-work programs (the CCC, the WPA, and the PWA) and their lasting impact on America's infrastructure. Rich with oral histories and actualities.
the doyouinverts sings songs about old friends who don't play videogames anymore, Edge Magazine's scoring system and a love song to an imported Japanese videogame. They are a regular feature on British videogame radio show/podcast One Life Left.
Stanford Italian literature professor Robert Harrison does a conversational show on KZSU, the university radio station, called Entitled Opinions (on Life and Literature), which is also distributed as one of the most fascinating, engaging podcasts in any possible universe. Choicest topics include mimetic desire, Proust, the inflationary universe, 1910, American writers in Paris and the history of the book.
LugRadio is a fortnightly British radio show that takes a relaxed, humorous look at Linux and open source.
To The Best Of Our Knowledge is one of the most wide-ranging and literate public radio shows in the US, a two-hour "radio salon" featuring leisurely exploration of weekly themes like No Smoking, Identity Crisis, Weekend, and The Mind, Music, and Math. Host Jim Fleming approaches these big ideas through the works of authors - journalists of all stripes, memoirists, poets, fiction writers, essayists. Five years' worth of shows are available on audio archives; you can also search the impressive list of authors by name, or subscribe to the podcast. [more inside]
Maximum Fun! Interviews with all sorts of interesting people. John Hodgman and Henry Rollins, Brendon Small and Peter Molyneux, Terry Jones, Jonathan Katz and Jonathan Goldstein, Patton Oswalt, Elmore Leonard, They Might Be Giants, Ira Glass, and many, many more, from all areas of the arts and sciences and stuff. Something for everyone! [more inside]
Over the next four weeks, Jeffrey Sachs will be giving the 2007 BBC Reith Lectures. Download [MP3] the first week's lecture ("Bursting at the Seams"), or subscribe [XML] to the podcast. Listen to the 1999-2006 lectures in full, or hear historic lecturers such as Bertrand Russell and J.K. Galbraith.
How to build your very own balsawood crow, the poetry of Dennis Beerpint, Little Severin the Mystic Badger, plus lobster diagrams and of course the Binnacle of the Week await you at Hooting Yard. Celebrated in song and story, Hooting Yard (also a radio show and podcast) is the home of Frank Key, author of such works as Sydney the Bat is Awarded the Order of Lenin and A Complete and Utter History of Norwich.
The Philosophy Podcast seems to be a podcast where great philosophical works are read aloud. Unfortunately you need to pay for the full works, but the bits are fun. For something a little more contemporary, check out Philosophy Talk, hosted by Ken Taylor and one of the funniest contemporary analytic philosophers: John Perry. In particular, check out Perry's light essays in which the power of procrastination can be harnessed (and apparently now put on t-shirts), an ideal desk is a giant lazy susan, and connections are drawn between golf and suffering.
This American Life is now offering free podcasts. A while ago, someone noticed MP3s of This American Life episodes were sitting in a publicly accessible directory. People soon starting making podcasts. This American Life asked them to stop. Most of them did. Fans of the show were disappointed. Now the podcast is available directly from TAL for free.
Benjamin Walker's Theory of Everything. Suggesting specific podcasts might be a little iffy but if you haven't heard Benjamin Walker, you're really missing out. A self-described "radio artist," Walker's delivery immediately jumps out. And once you start to listen to whatever it is he's saying, you'll find yourself angry, fascinated, entertained and/or perhaps enlightened.
"I've never believed, for a moment, that atheists have all the answers. Just that they pose better questions." This attack (read the response), by the Australian Atheist society on Phillip Adams, is a good introduction to the Australian writer and broadcaster who presents probably the best, most thoughtful hour of radio on the planet. Now ABC National's "Late Night Live" is online, and podcast to the world. Give it a try, you absolutely don't have to be Australian to find it worthwhile.