March 21, 2007

podcast adulation

In Our Time
BBC radio 4

This is not so much a real review as just a marvelling at how wonderful this radio show is. I am just a huge fan, and never miss an episode. If you've never heard it, go get the podcast (that's how I listen to it) and I guarantee you'll be converted instantly.

Each week the host and three selected panelists take up a certain topic and look at it from various historical perspectives, tracing the impact of a person or idea or movement through time. Some recent favorites that stand out in my mind: Indian Mathematics, Karl Popper, Microbiology, and last week's on English Epistolary Literature. But really every single episode is full of gems of information and concepts, floated through time the way only good historians can make interesting.

The host, Melvin Bragg, is sharp himself, and brilliant at keeping the guest historians focused but still having a good time. The invited guests are nearly always from universities in the British Isles, experts in their fields. Some take to the radio-panel format easily, and some don't, but they all bring a passion and enthusiasm that's infectious.

I feel so informed and tuned into the broad sweeps of history each time I listen. Go get this show so you can feel the same.

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