Podcasts of the week: politics, time travel and Ukrainian culture

The great talk politics The podcast, hosted by Cambridge professors Helen Thompson and David Runciman — always insightful if a little “wonkish” at times — released its final episode earlier this month, James Marriott said in The times. Its demise has left a “gaping hole in the listening lives of political nerds” like me. “But! A successor has arrived just in time.”

The rest is politics (from the producers of the brilliant The rest is history) will be moderated by Alastair Campbell and Rory Stewart. They make an “impressive” and unexpectedly funny couple – Campbell, “chippy and humorous,” and Stewart combine unwavering smoothness with “moral seriousness.” The two enjoy teasing each other about their political differences, and both are “well enough in the political wilderness to be able to speak their minds.”

Like many new podcasts, it feels a bit unfocused: A recent episode covers Bill Clinton’s intellect, prison reform, Ukraine, the private school problem and the Iraq war. Give each episode a sharper theme, and this is a “classic” in the making.

Another excellent history podcast, Elle Hunt said in The guardis Travel through time, which describes itself as a mixture of “serious story and playful parlor game”. In each episode, a leading historian or public figure is asked: If you could travel back in time, which year would you visit? They then guide the listener through their chosen year, selecting “three revealing scenes” that shed light on the era in question.

The strength of the podcast is the “little snippet of the past that it presents,” be it Athens 450 B.C. AD, London 62 AD, India 1837 or the moon 1969. Also recommended Dan Snow’s hit story (“larger scope, with less storytelling”) and the US podcast revolutions (detailed accounts of historic uprisings).

With “compelling, searing testimony” from ordinary Ukrainians, File 4 – Ukraine: War Stories (BBC Sounds) is one of the best podcasts on the Ukraine war, said Patricia Nicol in The Sunday Times. Also recommended are two from earlier, happier times that offer insights into the culture of Ukraine and its diaspora.

In episode 212 of olive Podcast, Olia Hercules, the Ukrainian-born author of the “transporting” cookbooks Mamushka and summer kitchensShe speaks “stimulatingly about the food culture that has shaped her”. And in 2015 A Brief History of the Ukrainians in Britain, available now on BBC Sounds, Oliver Bullough travels to Ukrainian-British communities across the UK and meets people descended from POWs and previous waves of refugees. Filled with music and dance sounds, it is “a beautiful listen”.

https://www.theweek.co.uk/arts-life/culture/music/956214/podcasts-of-the-week-politics-time-travel-and-ukrainian-culture Podcasts of the week: politics, time travel and Ukrainian culture

Fry Electronics Team

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