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The Podcast Broadcast

The podcast broadcast by Brittany Jezouit features weekly dispatches highlighting the best in audio storytelling and podcast news.


06/25/2016Prisons are almost impossible for reporters to get inside, and few people know what life inside is like for inmates and guards. But one journalist cracked the shell of secrecy by getting a job as a prison guard. He witnessed cost-cutting measures and reported safety concerns affecting prisoners and staff. On this episode of Reveal, we take an unprecedented look inside the multibillion-dollar private prison industry.
What happens behind locked doors? This is an intense story about a journalist who goes undercover at a private prison in Louisiana. There were points in this episode where I felt my heart beating in my throat. I won’t lie – it was uncomfortable at times, but it is a truly spectacular piece about something that most of us will (hopefully) never experience.
06/22/2016 The first thing that greets you when you step off the elevator at the Planned Parenthood in Brooklyn is a metal detector. "I didn’t necessarily expect it," a first-time patient told me. "But as soon as I saw it I was like, 'Oh yeah, that’s right, that makes sense.'"  Many Planned Parenthood clinics across the country rely on security measures like these. The services provided by these clinicsspecifically, abortionshave long been at the center of a raging political debate in the U.S. But it's not very often that we hear from the people who rely on these clinics for health care.  Over a number of days this past winter and spring, we collected interviews at the Planned Parenthood clinic in downtown Brooklyn. Patients volunteered to talk with us while they were waiting for their appointments. They were there for STD tests, pap smears, birth control prescriptionsno one seeking an abortion talked with me on the days we were there. But for many of the people I met, abortion was an important part of their history with Planned Parenthood.  "Here it was just very reassuring," a patient named Sarah, who was at the clinic for her annual exam, told me about her abortion three years ago at Planned Parenthood. "No one wants to do it, but life, you know, happens." We also talked with some of the abortion protesters who stand outside the clinic every Saturday, rain or shine. And I interviewed several staff members and volunteers at Planned Parenthoodlike Rhea, who greets patients as they walk in the door downstairs. "If you’re wondering if this is the right choice and you’re there and you’ve made the appointment and you’ve been thinking and you’re like, crossing the line...somebody being a jerk to you could totally just melt you down," she told me. "Or, somebody with a smile and somebody who holds your hand, could just make you feel calm and make you feel good. At a time where maybe you don’t feel good." 
Anna Sale heads to Planned Parenthood to interview willing participants in the clinic's waiting room. Anna’s disarming interview style allows the listener to get an intimate look at the experiences people are currently having inside Planned Parenthood, as well as their history with the organization.
06/24/2016We like to think of our own personalities - and those of our spouses, children and friends - as predictable and constant over time. But what if they aren't? In this episode, Alix Spiegel visits a prison to explore whether there is such a thing as a stable personality. And Lulu Miller asks whether scientists can point to a single thing about a person that doesn't change over time. The answer might surprise you.
A few weeks ago my Chicago Podcast Brunch Club got together for an NPR Listening Party around the launch of the second season of Invisibilia. It was a great way to kick off the season. This episode explores the possibility that personality is not constant, as most of us believe. How does this affect relationships when the one thing you think you know about your partner is their personality? How does this affect a woman who decides to work with an inmate who is in prison for rape? What exactly is constant about us? The truth is: not a whole lot.
06/25/2016 Fayaz asked Jo to marry him after they’d spent just one week in the same place. Here’s how that worked out. This story is the second installment in our Summer of Love series, but as it unfolds it becomes about more than just love.
This summer, Strangers is doing a series called “Summer of Love” in which they talk to various people about their relationships. This episode tells the story of Jo and Fayaz, a German woman and an Indian Muslim man, who decided to get married after knowing each other for one week. There is a true sweetness to their story despite the many hurdles they had to overcome including family, geography, and government.
06/24/2016Portraits of some of the most unusual female presidential candidates -- who never won the White House.
Did you know that more than 35 women have run for President of the United States? Did you know that the first of them ran in 1872? Or that in 1972 a black woman ran? I did not know any of these things and this episode was equally inspirational and infuriating. Why, in 2016, 144 years after the first woman ran for president, is gender even up for discussion when it comes to the ability to rule this country?
06/07/2016September 3rd, 1967, also known as H-Day, is etched in the collective memory of Sweden. That morning, millions of Swedes switched from driving on the left side of the road to driving on the right. The changeover was an unprecedented undertaking, involving national infrastructural overhauls, extensive educational campaigns, and pop music.
A few years ago I spent two weeks in Ireland driving on the left and very wrong feeling side of the road. I eventually got used to it but that first day was probably the most tense and alert I’ve ever been. This new episode of 99% Invisible details how this feeling was multiplied millions of times over on September 3, 1967, when Sweden somehow successfully switched their entire driving infrastructure from driving on the left to driving on the right. All Swedes know this as H-day, short for Högertrafikomläggningen (the right-hand traffic diversion). “Stick it to the right, Svennson”, the winner of a national contest for the best H-Day pop song, is still firmly stuck in my head.
06/11/2016Speaking together for the first time, four European hostages of so-called Islamic State talk to Lyse Doucet about their period of incarceration between March 2013 and June 2014. Aid worker Federico Motka, journalists Didier Francois and Daniel Rye, and blogger Pierre Torres were all held for between 10 and 14 months each.
Hear from an Italian aid worker, a French journalist, a Danish freelance photographer, and a French blogger on their experience being separately captured by ISIS and their eventual 12 months time spent together in captivity. They were part of a group of 19 at it’s largest and this interview is the first time they’ve all been together since their release. This whole episode easily fits into the “puts things into perspective” category that makes you not worry about petty everyday concerns. The highlight for me was when they discuss how they kept a connection to their humanity by giving each other impromptu lectures on boring topics like how to make iron or how to sail (using blankets as props) for the sole purpose of mentally escaping.
06/02/2016 Patrick Smith, the author of Cockpit Confidential, answers every question we can throw at him about what really happens up in the air. Just don't get him started on pilotless planes -- or whether the autopilot is actually doing the flying.
This episode of Freakonomics gives you the chance to hear an experienced commercial airline pilot answer all the questions we all have about flying. Like have you ever seen a UFO? Or what do pilots even do now that so much is automated? (Hint: do not ask this to a pilot). And how safe is flying, really? The take away reminds me of Louis CK’s famous “Everything’s amazing and nobody’s happy” bit. Modern flight is getting more and more efficient, is much safer than it used to be, and is overall a pretty crazy thing that literally could not be imagined 100 years ago.
05/27/2016Bob Dylan, one of the most iconic American artists of the 20th century, just turned 75 this May. Jim and Greg examine the extraordinary career of the music legend in the first of a two-part series. This week, they explore Dylan's folk days to the moment he went electric.
As a huge music fan, I’m a little embarrassed to admit I’ve never understood what the big deal was with Bob Dylan. That’s why when I saw that Sound Opinions was doing a two part series celebrating his career at the still productive age of 75, I had to see what I’ve been missing out on. Well, thanks to two passionate music critics from Chicago, I finally get it! Sometimes you just need to hear the story around why something is popular to start appreciating it. It turns out I really dig Dylan's first couple albums and some of his later gems that were highlighted during the episodes. So if you are very “meh” about Bob Dylan, see if this can sell you on him. And if you are a normal person who is already a fan, there’s plenty to still learn.
06/03/2016Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot conclude their two-part celebration of American icon Bob Dylan as he turns 75. This week, they explore the recording of Blonde on Blonde through his late career renaissance.
As a huge music fan, I’m a little embarrassed to admit I’ve never understood what the big deal was with Bob Dylan. That’s why when I saw that Sound Opinions was doing a two part series celebrating his career at the still productive age of 75, I had to see what I’ve been missing out on. Well, thanks to two passionate music critics from Chicago, I finally get it! Sometimes you just need to hear the story around why something is popular to start appreciating it. It turns out I really dig Dylan's first couple albums and some of his later gems that were highlighted during the episodes. So if you are very “meh” about Bob Dylan, see if this can sell you on him. And if you are a normal person who is already a fan, there’s plenty to still learn.
06/10/2016We usually get wiser with age, but that doesn't mean we have to grow up to wise up. This hour, TED speakers explore what it means to find wisdom at every stage of life.
“Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period.” This might not sound ground breaking, but it’s the clearest insight to be gained from the world’s longest running study on one group of people. This episode of TED Radio Hour is worth a listen just for the last segment that deals with expanding on this idea on how our relationships are the most important thing in our lives.
06/03/2016How far should lawyers go to provide the best defense to the worst people?
Listen to Radiolab, send to your friend in law school, prepare for a debate about ethics in defending bad people.
06/01/2016 Last week Brian Christian, co-author of the book "Algorithms to Live By," taught us how algorithms can optimize how we live. They can help explain that messy pile of papers on your desk, or why you sometimes have a brain fart. If you missed that episode, it's right here. This week we're raising the stakes (and steaks). We're putting such algorithms to the test to see if they can actually help solve some of our daily inconveniences, like picking a place to eat or finding a date. Here's what happened: The Name's Zomorodi, Gitta Zomorodi Meet Gitta. She's Manoush's sister. Usually when Gitta and Manoush get together for a meal, they feel a lot of pressure to pick the perfect spot. But instead of settling, they wander around until they're sufficiently hangry, and end up almost eating one another. But this time out, the two decided to give "optimal stopping" a shot — that's an algorithm that says if you evaluate 37 percent of your options and establish a baseline, the next option that comes along is the one you should pick. Since it wasn't really practical for Manoush and Gitta to evaluate 37 percent of all the restaurants in New York, they pledged to make their decision 37 percent faster than they usually would, which, in this case, they calculated at about 11 minutes. They made their decision and, guess what — they had a great time. And they weren't even hangry, so their could enjoy each other's company. Algorithms: 1.  See Gitta (left) and Manoush (right) reveling in their new algorithmic lives: Coffee Meets Kagel Next, eligible bachelorette Jenna Kagel (who also happens to be one of the fine producers on this show) tried applying algorithms to online dating. She used the app Coffee Meets Bagel which, for those fortunate enough to be uninitiated, is like Tinder — you swipe "pass" or "like" on a series of profiles, and hope the other person reciprocates — but in this case you only have 24 hours to choose. Jenna swiped away, but to no avail. She even connected with a bookstore owner in Brooklyn who didn't respond when she asked him out to drinks. (Brooklyn book man: If you're reading this, Jenna is out of your league and you don't deserve her.) Algorithms: 0. But that's the thing: even algorithms have a margin for error. Maybe if Jenna tried again a different week, she might get a date. If Manoush and Gitta decide on restaurants using an algorithm every time, eventually they're going to have a crappy meal. So, knowing that they're fallible, how much trust should we place in algorithms to help make decisions? Use the audio player above to hear move about Manoush, Gitta and Jenna's adventures with algorithms, plus a super nerdy love story. And tell us if you've tried using an algorithm in real life. How did it go? We'd love to hear from you. Subscribe to Note to Self on iTunesStitcherTuneInI Heart RadioPocket Casts or anywhere else using our RSS feed.        
Listen to Note to Self, send to the Tinder-obsessed person in your life.
06/04/2016This episode is for everyone who's ever had to ask their coworkers to quiet down or walk laps of the office to make a private phone call. Today on the show: We meet the man who stole your office door.
Listen to Planet Money, send to your coworker who hates your open office as much as you do.
06/06/2016Your host sets out to better understand America’s craft beer scene. The latest food trend? Or oppositional culture?  And can it survive the attention from Megabrew? image: http://www.beercapmaps.com  
Benjamen Walker investigates the weird, wonderful, complicated world of craft beer in the U.S. in his two-part series, sudculture, for Theory of Everything. Is the craft beer scene deceptive? Are you paying too much for that Blue Moon? What is ‘craft beer’, anyways?