A new discovery: enormous awesome podcast archive!

Readers of this blog may or may not be aware that I am a big fan of BBC Radio 4. Radio 4 is one of the brilliant things about Britain, alongside tea-drinking, tolerance, and public healthcare. My approach to listening to it is pretty ad-hoc – I’ll switch it on when I’m in the car or washing up, not at any particular time of day or day of the week.

So perhaps it’s not surprising that I hadn’t ever listened to In Our Time before today – despite it being an extremely successful discussion programme (or so says Wikipedia, anyway). I came across it via Thinking Allowed which I’ve been listening to in podcast form for a while, and at the end of every podcast it says why not try the In Our Time podcast? So I went and had a look today and oh my word. This is amazing.

Archive by Title, Page 1:

  • Abbasid Caliphs, The
    (rulers of the Islamic world for 2000 years)
  • Abelard and Heloise
    (a medieval tale)
  • Aeneid, The
    (you do know what the Aeneid is, right?)
  • Africa
    (discussing the roots of political and social crises in Africa)
  • Age of Doubt, The
    (the spread of religious doubt over the last 3 centuries)
  • Age of the Universe, The
    (what it says on the tin …)
  • Ageing
    (ethical, economic and biological implications of living longer)
  • Ageing the Earth
    (discussing the age of the Earth)
  • Agincourt
    (History and legacy of the English army’s defeat of the French)
  • Akhenaten
    (a Pharaoh)

I mean, look at that range of topics! It’s incredible! There are 500+ In Our Time programmes that have been broadcast and a very large number (if not all) of them are available online. For free.

Let’s get this straight: I can press keys and click buttons and plug cables into a box, and get access to discussions with leading academics, religious figures, philosophers, writers, everything, for free, and transfer these discussions to my hand-held device for listening to at a time of my choosing.

Truly, we live in the future 🙂

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