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A couple recent podcast episodes worth recommending

I listen regularly to a handful of podcasts, and irregularly to a couple handfuls more. This past week I’ve run across a couple episodes that I feel are particularly worth recommending:

Radiolab Presents: More Perfect: “The Political Thicket”.

More Perfect is a short-run podcast (they plan to produce 7 episodes) by the wonderful folks at Radiolab that is focusing on the US Supreme Court. The Political Thicket is an episode about the 1962 Baker vs. Carr decision in which SCOTUS first really got involved in political decisions – in this case, by forcing Tennessee to reapportion legislative districts in a way that provided equal representation for both whites and blacks. Fascinating stuff.

Fresh Air: Christopher Eccleston On ‘The A Word,’ and Rethinking His Faith After ‘The Leftovers’

Fresh Air is hardly a novel or surprising podcast recommendation, but this Terry Gross interview with actor Christopher Eccleston was superb. I’m really only familiar with Eccleston from his season playing the lead in Doctor Who, but after this interview I also really want to catch up with The Leftovers.

Eccleston talks frankly about his wrestling with faith, talking about how he’s moved from an angry atheism to a more open viewpoint, and how the Biblical book of Job has loomed large in playing his character in The Leftovers. He also talks very personally about his struggles in relating to and caring for his father who suffered from dementia for 15 years before passing away in 2012.

A really fantastic interview – Terry Gross is of course a premier interviewer, and Eccleston is a very engaging and forthcoming subject. Worth 40 minutes.

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