Favorite Podcasts

I love podcasts. I listen to them for education, for entertainment, and to keep myself from going crazy while doing housework. Here’s a list of some of the podcasts I listen to most:

Freakonomics: The hidden side of everything

After reading the book Freakonomics, by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, I sought out more from them and stumbled on this podcast. I enjoy popular social science. As a trained anthropologist, I’ve spent a lot of time reading academic social science texts, and they are important. But they are limited. And even though I sometimes question the theories and claims that Levitt and Dubner bring up (in both the book and podcast) I appreciate how this podcast brings social science to a wider audience.

This American Life

Storytelling at its best. Each episode has a theme, and they share stories on that theme. Sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it’s serious, and sometimes they make me laugh and cry at the same time. I don’t know what else I can say — Ira Glass, the host, is simply inspirational.

Stuff You Should Know

This is a cute podcast that will tell you about those things you didn’t know you didn’t know (the unknown unknowns, if you will). I have to admit that I don’t listen to every single episode — sometimes I’m happy just not knowing — but when I listen, I always learn something new.


really don’t always agree with Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich, the hosts of this podcast. I first came across the podcast when a friend was discussing a particularly controversial, culturally dismissive episode (Yellow Rain). But even so, they cover a delightful range of topics and, for the most part, I truly enjoy how they do it.

America’s Test Kitchen

When I lived in the US, I watched PBS all the time and watched this show religiously. I love cooking shows. (I am not, however, a great cook.) The podcast is a bit different — it’s less about sharing recipes (although each episode has one) and more about sharing cooking tips and featuring stories about chefs and food. It’s a favorite podcast while I’m working in the kitchen.

I listen to other podcasts, too, but these are the ones I always check first. How about you — any podcasts you think I should add to my list?