Category Archives: Podcasts

I hear with my little ear: Podcasts 6 -13 November 2018

Well, the mid-term elections are done and dusted, Jeff Sessions has been ordered to let himself out the door- what does it all mean? There’s a new Trumpdate episode of Russia If You’re Listening.

News in Slow Spanish Latino Episode #282

99%Invisible Episode 326 Welcome to Jurassic Art has a podcast about the depiction of dinosaurs and how it has changed as artists have been liberated to draw from analogy and imagination. I’ve often been amused looking a sketches of a dinosaur that show the one little tiny bone that has been discovered.

Big Ideas. Kirsten McKenzie is one of the historians who influenced me most when I wrote my thesis on Judge Willis (see my review of A Swindler’s Progress which she released in 2009 ). In this podcast A scandalous empire she talks about colonial scandals – Viscount Lascelles in NSW and Chief Justice Wylde in the Cape Colony- and what they tell us about respectability and anxiety, and the bringing of social change. It’s a lecture recorded on 4 October 2018 at UWA Institute of Advanced Studies. The recording has not been kind: it’s rather shrill, (says she who is very self-conscious about her own voice) but the content is excellent.

Conversations.  Everybody’s favourite interviewer Richard Fidler talks with David Marr, who is so witty, arch and caustic. A rather more tentative and emotional interview subject is Louisa Deasey who talks about how she completely re-evaluated her view of her long-deceased father when she received a Facebook message from a stranger about a cache of letters a French family had found amongst their grandmother’s possessions. The episode Discovering a father’s secret life in France ties in with Deasey’s book A Letter from Paris. The interviewer Sarah Kanowski sure has to work hard to get this story out of a very nervous interviewee.

I hear with my little ear: Podcasts 30 Oct – 5 November 2018

History Hour (BBC) I don’t know why it took me so long to find this program. The episode from April 29 2017 is a cracker: the campaign beginning in 1977 by the mothers of children who disappeared during the military dictatorship in Argentina who are now known as the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, Bulgaria’s attempt to crush Turkish language and culture. and a gruelling interview with a woman who survived Bosnia’s rape camps. I also listened to a recent one about when Russia’s richest man was jailed, which had a good section on the discovery of oil in Nigeria.

Conversations (ABC). Richard Fidler is such a good interviewer. I listened to him interviewing Leigh Sales about her new book Any Ordinary Day. And in Inside the Family: the bizarre and brutal Australian cult, from a writers festival somewhere Richard interviews the authors of a documentary and book on Ann Hamilton-Byrne’s cult up in the Dandenongs, where children were adopted under very questionable circumstances (originally broadcast in 2017)

Earshot (ABC) The Conquistador, the Walpiri and the Dog Whisperer is about two Chilean women, from different sides of Chilean politics who ended up working in Central Australia managing Warlukurlangu Art Centre in the desert community of Yuendemu. I have conflicted feelings about the industrializing and commercializing of traditional art, and feel even more conflicted after listening to this.

But Robert Manne’s Voice is absolutely, completely wonderful. Robert Manne is an Australian public intellectual who has spanned the political range from left wing to right wing and back again. He has recently had surgery for throat cancer, which means that this man, who continues to speak out about climate change and refugees, now speaks only in a whisper. Even if you don’t know who Robert Manne is, listen to this. It’s really good.

History Hour (ABC) For Armistice Day, there’s an interesting podcast about the tradition of the ‘minute’s silence’,  suggested by an Australian soldier who enlisted from England. He originally planned for five minutes silence until they realized how l-o-n-g five minutes of silence was.

Duolingo. Episode 13 Refugiados. An interesting episode about a political refugee from Uraguay during the military dictatorship during the 1970. A mixture of English and slowly-spoken Spanish. There’s a transcript on the webpage.

I hear with my little ear: Podcasts 22 October-29 October

Revolutions podcast. Episode 9.09 The Tiger.  At last! Francisco Madero finally does something, Portfirio Diaz finally retires (after promising to do so thirty-odd years earlier) and we finally bring all the gang together by introducing Pancho Villa, whom I vaguely remember from History I back at La Trobe in 1974.

Articles of Interest. Episode 1 Kids’ Clothes introduces the concept of this podcast series about fashion and clothing and then goes on to explore the design restrictions on children’s clothing, especially for an adult of small stature who has to shop in the children’s wear department. Episode 2: Plaid looks at tartan, its history and its use as identity marker from Highlanders to the gay community. It starts with a woman with such a bad case of vocal fry that she sounds like she’ll just combust, or croak away into silence.

The Horror of Delores Roach I listened to Episode 2 You Know He Lives Underground, Right? I’m not really sure about this one. It’s pretty grimy and it has a lot of swearing. Even I am finding it gratuitous.

News in Slow Spanish Latino Episode #280

BBC History Hour This is a weekly broadcast that has about four stories in a 50 minute episode. Although there might be a contemporary event or publication that has prompted the segment, the podcasts themselves don’t date. I listened to an episode from 23 Dec 2017 about the filming of To Kill a Mockingbird and a fascinating one from May 6 2018 where Margaret Thatcher’s personal secretary, a left-leaning public servant, spoke about her ambivalent relationship with her. It also had a segment on the Childrens’ Crusade during the early 1960s civil rights movement, and the striking changes to the way Shakespeare is interpreted brought about the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Russia If You´re Listening (ABC) The series has officially finished, but Matt Bevan sometimes releases ‘Trumpdates’ if something has arisen worth discussing. In this podcast he is talking with Leon Neyfakh the host of the podcast ‘Slow Burn’ which examined Watergate in its first season, and White Water/Monica Lewinsky in its second season. Here they discuss Trump’s Russian travails against these earlier scandals. Couldn’t find the episode on the ABC website, so you might have to go to your ABC Listen app.

Rear Vision (ABC). This was an interesting podcast about Megacities, comparing the past and future of megacities in the global north and south.

 

I hear with my little ear: 15 Oct -21 Oct 2018

Background Briefing: Haircuts and Hate: the rise of Australia’s alt-right. An excellent program. If you thought Pauline Hanson’s little ‘It’s OK to be white’ foray was harmless, listen to this and think again.

Articles of Interest is a podcast about fashion, which doesn’t really sound like me at all, but it’s fascinating.  Episode #3 is about pockets and why women don’t have them when men do (it was estimated that a suit had 24 pockets during the 1940s!!!)  Episode #6 is about Punk fashion, focussing particularly on Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren. I never really ‘got’ what punk was about, but I think I have a bit more of an idea now.

Revolutions Podcast continues with the Mexican Revolution. Episode 9.08 The Plan of San Luis. Portfirio Diaz won the 1910 election by imprisoning the opposition, an old trick. But the opposition leader, Madero, who went to the US after being released from jail, cooked up the Plan of San Luis, which planned for uprisings  all over Mexico as the results of the election were declared invalid. But Diaz got wind of it, arrested the ringleaders and the city uprisings didn’t happen at all. The day was saved by rural rebels, including those led by Pascual Orozco.

Duo Lingo Podcast. Episode 12 Sin verguenza. A woman is determined to expunge every bit of her Peruvian background from her language and identity, only to find that she is seen as a ‘gringa’. She finally can accept her Peruvian identity “without embarrassment”. Dual English and Spanish.

99% Invisible. Episode 325 The Worst Way to Start a City. A fascinating history of the chaotic settler invasion of Oklahoma City on one day in 1889 when they declared the area ‘open’ at 12.00 noon and ‘boomers’ and ‘sooners’ scrambled to claim their spot. Really interesting in comparison with how the ‘unoccupied’ land of Port Phillip was opened up.

In Our Time Frederick Douglass, accompanied by a recent article in the New Yorker on 15 October 2018. But really, sometimes Melvyn Bragg really annoys me, like when he asks the only male on a panel of three about the links between the women’s movement in the 1840s and Frederick Douglass. Sheesh!

The Horror of Delores Roach. Episode 1: All the Gory Details This is made by the same company that produced ‘Sandra’. I generally listen to non-fiction on podcasts, but fiction works really well too. A woman is released from prison after 16 years and returns to her old apartment to find that her former boyfriend and the drug money they had secreted away have both long gone. She’s taken in by Luis, the owner of a empenada joint. I’m hooked!

I hear with my little ear: 1- 7 October 2018

Russia if you’re listening (ABC) Another Trumpdate- this time “Why Brett Kavanaugh matters to the Russia Investigation”

Mr Deakin – Judith Brett. Here historian Judith Brett discusses her book ‘The Enigmatic Mr Deakin’ with Kerryn Goldsworthy at the Adelaide Festival. Available on Soundcloud here for streaming but not download. It goes for nearly an hour, so it’s an expansive interview. What a fantastic resource the Adelaide Writers Week Soundcloud account is:-they’re all there!

News in Slow Spanish Latino Episode #277. I really enjoyed the segment about Spanish words for which there are no direct translations.  Like anteayer – the day before yesterday. Or friolentos– people who always feel cold. Or desvelarse when you’ve become over-tired and then you’re wide awake.  Or sobremesa which means the talking around the table after the meal has finished.  They didn’t mention this one, but I like it: consuegra– the mother-in-law of my child.

Revolutions Podcast 9.06 The Presidential Succession of 1910 Portfirio Diaz said that he welcomed a contested election but he was just joking.  9.07 Morelos looks at the province of what was to become Morelos as a microcosm of Mexican history so far, and introduces Emiliano Zapata (and his mustache)

I hear with my little ear: 24 Sept- 30 Sept

News in Slow Spanish Latino #275 and #276. Episode #275 had a fascinating section about why written Spanish uses punctuation marks at the beginning as well as the end of a sentence. Apparently in the 18th century the Royal Academy, which guards the purity of the Spanish language, decreed that long sentences should have ? and ! at the beginning and end so that someone reading it out loud would know what the intonation should be. The definition of a long/short sentence was vague, so they changed the rule so that the punctuation appeared on all sentences. ¡Up until 2014 an exclamation mark was known as a ‘sign of admiration’ which wasn’t always true, so they changed it to ‘sign of exclamation’!

The Thread Series 1. It might be story-telling but it sure ain’t history. As a historian, I feel a bit embarrassed admitting that I listened to The Thread first series because its approach to causality is very suss and some of the claims made had me snorting with derision. It’s better to think of it as a ‘Six Degrees of Separation’, as it moved from the shooting of John Lennon to Vladimir Lenin. On the way, it passed J.D.Salinger, Eugene O’Neill, Oona O’Neill and Louise Bryant and her husband John Reed (as seen as in the 1981 film ‘Reds’). The individual biographies were interesting, but the “if only…” history behind it is a bit of a stretch.

Rear Vision. (ABC) On the tenth anniversary of the GFC, this Rear Vision episode The legacy of the Global Financial Crisis gives a really good overview.

Russia if you’re listening (ABC). The series has officially finished, but Matt Bevan issues ‘Trumpdates’ if anything interesting comes along. And, with Donald Trump, something usually does. They are shorter episodes, generally featuring Matt Bevan discussing events with a (usually Australian) commentator  This time: Will Rosenstein lose his job?

I Hear with my Little Ear: podcasts 16/9/18 -23/9/18

In Our Time (BBC). At least Melvyn Bragg has stopped coughing. Making Montesquieu exciting is a big ask, but the two Richards and a Rachel did a fairly good job.  Even though he died in 1755, Montesquieu’s ideas about liberty and constitutions affected the compilation of the American constitution and provided an intellectual basis for Robespierre during the French revolution.

I Have to Ask (Slate). I’ve been reading Ta-Nehisi Coates recently, and this podcast suggested that it would be about his book ‘We Were Eight Years In Power’. It’s rather rambly, and there’s not really that much about the book as such. A bit disappointing.

Conversations (ABC) I always enjoyed listening to Bea Campbell (Communist, feminist, writer on Princess Diana) on Philip Adams’ Late Night Live, and in this episode she is interviewed by Sarah Kanowski.  Oh- it’s a repeat! Oh well.  Then there’s the interview with Tim Minchin, who has featured on this blog before here and here.  And finally, an interview with Gwynne Dyer, a journalist whose work I’ve enjoyed. Here he is not as pessimistic about democracy as one might have thought he would be.

Revolutions Podcast  Old Porfirio Diaz just kept on keeping on, until he said that he wouldn’t. Episode 9.05 The Creelman Interview.

News in Slow Spanish (Latino) Episode 273 had a fascinating segment on Blanca Luz Brum, who I’ve decided to talk about (in Spanish) at my Spanish class. The only problem is that everything on the internet is also in Spanish (hello Google Translate). Episode 274 had segments on NAFTA and the new figures for fatalities in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, and the protests about labelling the drink mezcal.