Podcasts of the Two Weeks Ending March 27


Best of the Left :: Democracy Under Siege

Republicans are attacking the right to vote in order to retain power and maintain white supremacist fascism.

Code Switch :: Lonnie Bunch And The ‘Museum Of No’

An interview with the first Black Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution focusing on his work in bringing the National Museum of African American History and Culture to fruition.

Have You Heard? ::  What They’ve Lost

Boston Public Schools students talk about their experiences of the COVID-19 pandemic and not being able to attend school in person. Also includes a good discussion of why the focus on “learning loss” only adds to the trauma rather than addressing students’ real problems.

Hub History :: Disaster at Bussey Bridge

134 years ago, corporate malfeasance lead to the death and dismemberment of several railway commuters at a site not far from where I live today.

Planet Money :: The Even More Minimum Wage

The history of the tipped minimum wage and how it maintains inequality. I was particularly stunned by how tipped employment is often the first jobs for young women and that it conditions them to accept sexual harassment in order to get tips.

Seizing Freedom :: Interview: Rhiannon Giddens

For the second POTW post in a row I’ve found a fascinating podcast about the banjo in Black music, this time an interview with the contemporary folk musician Rhiannon Giddens.

This American Life :: The Campus Tour Has Been Cancelled

Many colleges and universities have suspended using the SATs and other standardized tests for admissions because of the COVID pandemic. Tests like these have a gatekeeping effect and this podcast explores how their absence can open up college opportunities for poor, BIPOC, and first-generation applicants.

Throughline :: Chaos

Stories of humanity and chaos, including the real life The Lord of the Flies.

Twenty Thousand Hertz :: 20th Century Fox

The composition and history of the deceptively simple 20th Century Fox fanfare.

The War on Cars :: Jamelle Bouie Has Seen the Future of Transportation

Journalist Jamelle Bouie talks about his experience using an electric bike in Charlottesville, VA and the future of transportation and housing in the United States.

Running Tally of Podcast of the Week Awards for 2021

Podcasts of the Week Ending March 6


Seizing Freedom :: Reconstructing Family

This is a fairly new podcast that I just started listening to. I listened to all the back episodes this week and highly recommend it.  It is a history of Black Americans during the Civil War and Reconstruction who emancipated themselves and fought to gain political influence and equality.  Not only does it feature interviews with historians and scholars, but frequently we hear readings from primary documents allowing us to hear these Black people of a century and half ago in their own words.  The episode I chose stands out because it deals with an issue I’d never considered, how formerly enslaved people sought to find the parents, children, siblings, and spouses they’d been separated from by slavery.

Reparations: The Big Payback :: History of Reparations

Another new podcast also deals with slavery and the concept of reparations.  Hosted by Erika Alexander and Whitney Dow, the show deals directly with the tension of the reparations debate.  The episode I selected includes a timeline of the reparations movement from the Civil War era until now, done in a somewhat silly way.

Running Tally of Podcast of the Week Awards for 2021