Below are the latest podcasts we've published. For more podcasts, explore our themes or browse our SoundCloud channel
The Triple Cripples Download
Join the dynamic duo Kym Oliver and Jumoke Abdullahi and guests, in a hilarious and illuminating podcast full of laughter, energy, and your grandma’s cho. This open-hearted download sparks off in many directions: education and discrimination, representation and identities, dating and laughter, and “our beautiful Black Disabled selves!”
Memories for a Feminist Future
As culture wars rage and commemorative statues rise and fall, we see the power of memory and how its political impact can reshape society, for good and ill.
But whose memories count? How are they heard? And how might tomorrow’s activists benefit from the memories of their forebears?
Four pioneering feminists consider these questions, reflecting on feminist campaigns from the 1970s and 80s and the ongoing fight for women’s rights.
Each of the women features amongst the sixty interviewees from the groundbreaking Sisterhood and After: Women’s Liberation Oral History Project, accessed via the British Library.
Professor Margaretta Jolly from the University of Sussex, who led Sisterhood & After, hosts the conversation between: Sally Alexander, a historian who co-organised the UK’s first Women’s Liberation Movement conference and the Miss World protest of 1970. Stella Dadzie, a founder of the Organisation for Women of African and Asian Descent, considered a “grandmother” of Black Feminism in the UK. Barbara Jones, who set up one of the first women-only building companies, and is an expert in zero carbon buildings of timber and straw. Karen McMinn, who led Northern Ireland Women’s Aid during the bleak years of the Troubles, and is a specialist in transitional justice.
A New Rainbow Canon
Writer Afshan D’souza-Lodhi introduces a recording of her conversation with artists and poets Dean Atta and Paula Varjack where they discuss the need for a new LGBTQ+ literary canon containing a diversity of voices. This recording was produced for Pride 2020.
Armistead Maupin in Conversation
Where and how does the LGBTQ community view themselves in literature? Join author Armistead Maupin to discover how over 40 years, the Tales of the City stories shaped his life and captured the spirit of the LGBTQ movement.
This wide-ranging conversation between Armistead Maupin and author Damian Barr was recorded at the British Library Knowledge Centre on 10 February 2014, and was was produced for Pride 2020 in association with Gay’s the Word Bookshop.
Mary Wollstonecraft's Birthday Party
Join the British Library's celebration of one of history's neglected heroes, with historian Dan Snow, Professor Emma Clery, campaigner Bee Rowlatt, musician Jade Ellins and a special appearance from Lady Hale. With readings by actor Saffron Burrows. Recorded 28 April 2020
Bryan Stevenson: Just Mercy
A talk by the one of the most celebrated and influential crusaders for justice alive today. Celebrated American criminal justice lawyer, Bryan Stevenson, established the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) 25 years ago. He grew up black in segregated Delaware, graduated from Harvard Law School, and first came Montgomery, Alabama to offer his services as the pro bono defender of inmates on death row. Recorded at the British Library on 14 July 2015 as part of an exhibition and events programme marking the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta.
Angela Carter: A Celebration
Angela Carter (1940–1992) is one of the most original voices in the 20th century English literature. Edmund Gordon, author of the multiple award-winning The Invention of Angela Carter: A Biography talks to Lisa Appignanesi, Susannah Clapp and Pauline Melville, all friends of Carter. Recorded 24 November 2016.
Race Relations: An Act?
Join our panel as they discuss the four Race Relations Acts since 1965 alongside the impact of immigration legislation. What effect has the UK’s legislative and policy response had on Windrush and other migrants, and their descendants? With Geoffrey Bindman, Amelia Gentleman, Maya Goodfellow, Matthew Ryder and Iyiola Solanke. Recorded 6 July 2018.
British Trade in Black Labour: The Windrush Middle Passage
After World War Two Caribbean people re-crossed the Atlantic Ocean, this time not as chattel slaves but in response to the push of colonial oppression and exploitation, and the demand for their labour in the UK. Professor Sir Hilary Beckles examines the circumstances which lead to this ‘second Middle Passage’ in this keynote lecture. Recorded 15 June 2018.
Windrush Women: Past and Present
Join contemporary international writing magazine Wasafiri to celebrate women writers from the Windrush era and hear work inspired by their legacy from a new generation living and writing in the UK. With Jay Bernard, Alison Donnell, Maria Del Pilar Kaladeen, Hannah Lowe, Susheila Nasta and Catherine Ross. Recorded 25 June 2018.
Ep. 1 - William Wordsworth: From This Green Earth - Nature
Delve into the writing, life and legacy of one of Britain’s most famous poets in the 250th anniversary year of his birth. This episode explores the revolution Wordsworth prompted in social attitudes to nature and the appreciation of the natural world. Featuring Jade Cuttle, Pradip Krishen and Lucy Seigle.
Ep. 2 - William Wordsworth: From This Green Earth - Family
This episode focuses on the close family bonds in the Wordsworth household and shines a light on the vital literary and practical contributions of Wordsworth’s wife Mary and his sister Dorothy. Featuring artist Louise Ann Wilson, poet Hannah Hodgson and writer Ruth Padel.
Ep. 3 - William Wordsworth: From This Green Earth - Walking
Delve into the writing, life and legacy of one of Britain’s most famous poets in the 250th anniversary year of his birth. This episode looks at an activity that human have engaged with for millennia – walking. As in Wordsworth’s day this simple act still prompts creative thought and can often provide tranquillity in times of stress. Featuring Jade Cuttle, Shane O'Mara and Guy Stagg.
Ep. 4 - William Wordsworth: From This Green Earth - Childhood
Delve into the writing, life and legacy of one of Britain’s most famous poets in the 250th anniversary year of his birth. In this episode we are looking at the romantic notion of childhood a loose philosophy of youth that stirred a revolution in the history of ideas and is still being felt in our attitudes today. Featuring Jonathan Bates, Hannah Hodgson and Matt Sowerby.
Ep. 5 - William Wordsworth: From This Green Earth - Local Legacy
Delve into the writing, life and legacy of one of Britain’s most famous poets in the 250th anniversary year of his birth. A conversation with Melvyn Bragg on the enduring significance of Wordsworth’s poetry and on what ‘Wordsworth the Democrat’ can teach us about nature, politics and art. Melvyn reads from some of his favorite Wordsworth poems, including lines from ‘Tintern Abbey.' Also featuring Helen Mort.
Ep. 6 - William Wordsworth: From This Green Earth - International Legacy
Delve into the writing, life and legacy of one of Britain’s most famous poets in the 250th anniversary year of his birth. This episode tries to get a sense of the influence of Wordsworth outside of the Lake District and beyond the shores of Britain. An academic and a poet are invited to shed light on the reception of Wordsworth outside of the Anglosphere, to contribute their thoughts and research. Featuring Jade Cuttle, Ankhi Mukerjee and Lorna Goodison.
Queer homes and Families: A History and Policy Debate
Home and the family are where many of us begin to form an impression and understanding of the world, and our place within it. In 2012 the Raphael Samuel History Centre hosted Queer Homes, Queer Families at the British Library, as part of its History and Policy series. Featuring Dr Matt Cook and other academics. Produced for Pride 2020.
Queer in the City: London
Queer City: London, with Peter Akroyd was an event held at the British Library on 7 August 2017 to coincide with the exhibition Gay UK: Love, Law and Liberty. This wide-ranging discussion touches upon lesbianism in Paris, Black Pride, queer life in the regions, and much, much more. This recording was produced for Pride 2020.