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With the tagline “because sometimes the past deserves a second chance”, author Malcolm Gladwell visits moments and episodes from history, looking at stories or ideas that might have been misunderstood or overlooked – there’s always a new thought in each of the episodes. The first series consists of 10 episodes, and the next series is in production. For more details, go to www.revisionisthistory.com
Hosted by Hebah Fisher, this podcast uses immersive journalism and crisp storytelling to tell the tales of the Middle East in greater depth and subtlety to try to break down the oppositions of West and East, modern and traditional. It engages with sometimes offbeat and in-depth issues of politics, art, culture, migration, philosophy, history – and occasionally a touching love story. For more details, go to www.kerningcultures.com
The godfather of all modern podcasts, produced by public radio station WNYC and running since 2008, RadioLab uses innovative and distinctive sound design, interviews, stories and thought experiments – driven and informed by a deeply humane curiosity to explore questions and stories that touch upon science, philosophy and memory and what it means to be human. Each episode is an hour-long intriguing and transporting experience. For more details, go to www.radiolab.org
Happier with Gretchen Rubin
Happier is a weekly conversation between researcher and writer Gretchen Rubin and her sister, screenwriter Elizabeth Craft. The duo turn over and share habits, tendencies, tricks and tips that have been found to increase happiness in individuals – from forming productive habits to reducing stress at work or at home. It’s a warm, hopeful and helpful podcast, and the chemistry between the two very different sisters is very evident and enjoyable to share. For details, go to www.gretchenrubin.co
The main difficulty with the proliferation of podcasts is that it is difficult to discover new ones. There’s no consolidated directory or listings guide anywhere. The iTunes discovery and recommendation system is haphazard at best, and it is possible to be overwhelmed by choice. Sampler is not so much a podcast, but a podcast about podcasts – each week it introduces listeners to different podcasts with clips and brief discussions. You won’t like them all, but Sampler might just introduce you to some new best friends. For more details, got to www.gimletmedia.com/sampler.