It’s that time of the year when long essays, dissertations and revision are coming to a head but give your brain a well-deserved break and procrastinate to your heart’s content with these podcasts. They are all free and have the added bonus of peeling your eyes away from the laptop screen. Better yet, they require no effort on your behalf as they download automatically if you click subscribe.
- The High Low
The High Low is a discussion of all things highbrow and lowbrow in the week’s news, hosted by esteemed journalists Pandora Sykes and Dolly Alderton. Covering a wide range of topics, from light-hearted topics like Kylie Jenner’s secret pregnancy to the more hard-hitting subjects like #MeToo and Period Poverty. Bookworms, in particular, will love their author specials in which the hosts interview guests such as journalist Laura Freeman and novelist Leila Slimani. Pandora and Dolly’s laughter and enthusiasm is contagious and will have you scouring their show notes for their brilliant recommendations of articles, books and TV shows. It’s a wonderfully feminist, funny and thought-provoking podcast. Within no time at all, you’ll find yourself incessantly telling your flatmates all about it, just ask mine.
If you like this then try: Love Stories with Dolly Alderton, a heart-warming series of interviews with the likes of Emma Freud and Sara Pascoe.
- Desert Island Discs
BBC Radio 4’s long-running show is the perfect mix of talk and tunes, with famous guests choosing eight discs, a luxury and a book that they would take if cast away to a desert island. Hosted by Kirsty Young, whose soothing voice is as calm as it gets during exam season, the snippets of music are interspersed with personal chats about the castaway’s childhood, achievements and difficult periods in their lives. It’s true that some episodes are more interesting than others however I have picked some of my favourites for you to listen to. Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, is truly inspiring as she talks about gender equality and her battle with grief. For the foodies out there, deli-owner and writer Yotam Ottolenghi discusses his passion for Middle Eastern food, while music-lovers will enjoy Noel Gallagher’s description of his Manchester upbringing and the rise of Oasis. If these don’t interest you, then not to worry as there are a bank of episodes available online.
If you like this then try: Desert Island Dishes, the foodie alternative featuring chef guests.
TED conferences stand by their principle of ‘ideas worth spreading’ in this podcast, with audio recordings of talks by the world’s leading thinkers broadcast daily. There’s something for everyone, whether you’re interested in quantum physics, art, politics or none of the above. In exam season, have a listen to the entertaining episode ‘Inside the mind of a master procrastinator’ on TEDTalks Education. With episodes usually hitting the 15-20 minute mark, it’s perfect for a revision break and, you never know, it might crack that writer’s block that everyone experiences at one stage or another.
If you like this then try: The Infinite Monkey Cage, where Brian Cox and Robin Ince hit you with scientific facts