Terra Approved Podcasts of 2018
You can get an ear-full of education by listening to the right podcasts. Here is a list of the podcasts that are changing the way we see the world and imagine a more equitable future.
MÉTIS IN SPACE
“Métis In Space” hilariously deconstructs the science fiction genre through a decolonial lens. Join hosts Molly Swain & Chelsea Vowel as they drink a bottle of (red) wine, and from a tipsy, decolonial perspective, review a sci-fi movie or television episode featuring Indigenous Peoples, tropes & themes.
If you are a Twin Peaks fan we highly recommend this episode in which hosts Molly and Chelsea review Season 2, Episode 22 of Twin Peaks, “Beyond Life and Death,” where "Cooper must overcome his deepest fears as he enters the Black Lodge to save Annie from Windom Earle.”
“Seeing White” is life-changing, mind-blowing, and reality-shattering for any white person who is seeking to interrogate their attachment to the construct of whiteness. Hosts, John Biewan and Chenjarai Kumenyika, take listeners on a journey of crucial awakening. By turning the lens towards whiteness, Biewan and Kumenyika do what is unfortunately not conventionally done when we talk about race in America - they confront the White race, the race that gets to be seen as human, as individuals, as not a race, but as simply, “the norm,” the default. The White race was an intentional invention of slave traders and wealthy Europeans to hold onto their power and this podcast exposes just how they did it and how it continues to thrive in plain sight.
I hesitated to listen to “Men,” a podcast hosted by John Biewan and Celeste Headlee. I hesitated until I needed to write an essay about the white male privilege of Alex Honnold and then I poured over every episode to collect evidence and anecdotes to make my arguments stronger. Being a woman in this society, I was afraid this series would be incredibly infuriating and triggering, and it was. Though I needed to take breaks at times to shake out my fury, I gleaned a ton of insight into how male supremacy functions in our white supremacist patriarchy.
This podcast keeps me in a bind because while our society fails incredibly to hold men accountable, legally and socially, for their harmful actions, I also have immense compassion and empathy for boys who become men raised in a patriarchal society. Many episodes brought me to tears particularly episode 10, “The Juggernaut.” The fitting title points to patriarchy as a huge, powerful, and overwhelming force. Having three brothers I have witnessed the violent impact that patriarchy has had on them.
I highly recommend the whole series expertly guided by Biewan and Headlee. I am so grateful for this series to exist. It is a crucial listen for anyone working to dismantle their toxic masculinity or learn more about the nuanced impacts of male supremacy.
BACKTALK and POPAGANDA
Bitch magazine, a feminist response to pop culture, launched two podcasts that offer snappy feminist analysis on the issues, people, and media that are making headlines right now. Not only is it jam-packed with affirming humor, gratuitous bashing of toxic masculine jerks like James Franco and Trump, these podcasts also provide nuanced discussions about everything from veganism, white saviorism, the wage gap, #metoo, to internet memes-- to name only a few of the myriad dynamic discussions that the hosts encourage and hold space for engagement.
INFLECTION POINT WITH LAUREN SCHILLER
An inflection point in mathematics means a point of a curve at which a change in direction has occurred. In business it means a time of significant change in a situation; a turning point. With guests like Teresa Young, president and CEO of The Ms. Foundation for Women, Ijeoma Oluo author of So You Want to Talk About Race?, and Betty Reid Soskin of the National Park Service, it is clear that host Lauren Schiller is providing a platform for the voices of our time that are creating major inflection points in history. A quote from the website reads, “These are conversations that only women could have - but that everyone needs to hear.” Every episode offers experiences and ideas you can apply to your own life.
This episode is a MUST (they all are). It explores the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program in Canada by considering the modes of surveillance, exploitation, denial and violence embedded in the program.
I was blessed and lucky to see Hari Kondabolu live in Portland, Oregon last year with friends and fellow workshop facilitators, Lorena Jasis-Wallace and Larissa Nez. It’s hard to find a comedian who has the perspective and awareness to avoid falling on harmful, tired, and easy stereotypes to make a joke, but Kondabolu flawlessly makes jokes that are actually funny while weaving in the nuances of race, class, and gender. Politically Reactive is the product of Kondabolu and Kamau Bell joining forces to deliver an informative, consciousness-raising podcast. Their witty conversations with artists, activists, professors, journalists, writers, political thinkers, help you discern facts from fake news, and inspire you to be an active part of the resistance.
There are tragically only two seasons, and I can’t name a favorite because they are all so damn good, but if I had to choose one to start your journey: “Disaster Capitalism and How To Fight It, with Dr. Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor and Mustafa Santiago Ali.”