Let’s face it, the world of podcasts, like any other media and entertainment channel, is heavily influenced and led by dudes who love the sound of their own voice. Here to break the monotony are some brilliant podcasts by some very smart women. Listen up.
If you aren’t listening to Tracy Clayton and Heben Nigatu’s Another Round, hosted by BuzzFeed, you’re missing the best party in the podcast scene. Super intelligent, perceptive and armed with tonnes of one-liners that will have you rolling on the floor, Clayton and Nigatu discuss everything from make-up to music to literature, while also managing to keep a close eye on important issues like racism, mental health and feminism, and interviewing everyone from Hillary Clinton to Jordan Peele. These girls are your news BFFs.
The Behenchara Diaries
Not usually in the habit of making recommendations of podcasts that are brand new, I’ll make an exception with Behenchara Diaries, even if it’s only one episode old. It comes from the creators of the popular Tumblr page, Girls at Dhabhas, which features Pakistani women who document their efforts at reclaiming the streets and public spaces through actions that can be as simple as sipping tea on the roadside or cycling through the streets of Lahore. Now, Behenchara looks at expanding the message through a new medium. The first episode looks at topics like intersectionality, what it means to be a brown feminist, feminist literature and music recommendations.
However, as they often switch between English and Urdu, you do need a working knowledge of Urdu to listen to the podcast. Listen on patari.pk.
Stuff Mom Never Told You
Hosts Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin began this podcast in 2010 and since then they’ve gone from strength to strength. While they’ve expanded to include a very popular YouTube channel, hold workshops and also do live talks, they’re still very much about the podcast. Previous episodes include discussions on body shaming, women’s marches, man haters, birth control, women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), maternal mental health and also lighter topics such as the history of the burqa, acne, villainesses and rom-coms. Heavily researched and impeccably produced, listen to SMNTY for your weekly dose of Feminism 101.
“Invisibilia (Latin for invisible things) is about the invisible forces that control human behaviour — ideas, beliefs, assumptions and emotions”, says the description on the podcast website. Combining a sophisticated form of storytelling with scientific and cultural research, the show uses and pushes beyond the realms of science and medicine to answer largely philosophical questions. Hosts Alix Spiegel and Lulu Miller create what they call “radio art” and one listen to the podcast and you can tell why: the sound design is crafty and whimsical, the content extremely lush and detailed, and the production perfect, as you’d expect from an NPR podcast. Two seasons in, previous episodes include explorations of the origin of dark thoughts in the human brain, the many ways everyday objects can shape our world views and the effects we have on each other’s well-being, among others.
The Broad Experience
This 20-minute show hosted by British journalist Ashley Milne-Tyte tackles some of the big issues facing women in the workplace today. From burning topics like sexual harassment at work to practical issues like building confidence, being a female freelancer and breaking the glass ceiling, The Broad Experience is a must-listen not just for women, but for everyone, because it helps build empathy towards female colleagues and the unique and mostly invisible challenges they face on a daily basis.