There’s a confused old man interrupting or switching the subject, it’s actually infuriating
I’ve learned so much listening to this podcast. My favorite was on enzymes. Seriously. Enzymes. This show is that good. One thing I particularly appreciate is that the show’s panels always feature at least one woman as an expert. Even the math and science topics. Take that, gender stereotypes!
In Our Time never disappoints! Every podcast is a positive learning experience!
This is an almost impossible subject to discuss in an intellectually “solid” way, and for the first few minutes, I thought, “Uh-oh, they won’t be able to pull this off. Too much arcane knowledge, that whiff of seminarian naïveté... “. But, they did pull it off! Their solid knowledge of political history during the entire time that these trends were developing grounded the thing. Then their precision about Who said What, exactly was the icing on the cake. A madly important phenomenon, which this program has clarified
This is a great history podcast but Melvyn is constantly interrupting his guests and it makes it really hard to listen to sometimes. I would like to hear more from his guests and much less from him! Otherwise the guests and topics are always great!
Bragg is a great host. He’s dealing with HUGE egos. The fact that we can learn anything is thanks to Melvyn’s preternatural ability to reign in these massive eggheads. I will always be a fan.
A lovely bit of audio education.
Great podcast. Does Melvyn treat women differently than men? Yes. But what many seem to miss is that these women don’t need your protests. Formidable academics like Mary Beard, Angela Hobbs, and many others are not slowed by Melvyn’s inadequacies. These women return again and again to his podcast because they are well published, respected and know that they are experts in their fields. They don’t let his biases bring them down. If things change you will have these women that engage to thank. Your reviews will not do quite as much comparatively. Most Americans are probably not used to this format, especially with academics guests. Melvyn receives their notes in advance and can get irate if they deviate from them or go off on tangents. You miss the respect he has for his guests as he tries to keep any one guest to make their point of view the entirety of the show. It’s good that people are paying attention but I wish they would plug in to who these professors are and what they do for a living.
I love this show so much! Always interesting and I always learn something!
I love the podcast but often can’t listen because Melvyn disproportionately interrupts the female guests. Like, constantly. Just let them talk! They’re the experts! It’s really off-putting.
That's my question to historians when everything sounds a little too detailed and thankfully Melvyn Bragg is not too shy to ask his guests how much stock we can put in various historical tales. One of a handful of BBC programs in my arsenal against ignorance, "In Our Time" has enough depth and breadth to make me feel I've pushed back the onslaught of assumptions and outright nonsense a little farther each time I listen. Many thanks to all involved in producing the program and "Congrats!" on twenty years.
Bragg is so good at maintaining intellectual discipline on the forum that he can sometimes come off as heavy handed. But, because he has the courage to be rude when it matters, he is able to keep the panel completely focussed on the critical point of the issue. The result is a rich and satisfying discussion that will keep you coming back.
Excellent discussion and breadth of topics on this show, but Melvyn has an embarrassing tendency to cut off female guests in the way he seldom does to males.
This is a wonderful radio programme, stick around for the bit at the end when Melvyn asks the guests what they missed. Thanks to everyone involved in making this fabulous, illuminating, entertaining show!
My wife and I love the show. It's always informative about the entire subject even in the short time given. The host does a good job keeping the university professors from taking too much on any one detail or an academic disagreement. He knows how to keep the conversation substantial, serious, and focused on what non-academics would like to and need to know. Some topics are uninteresting to me of course. Those that I do listen to I learn and understand something new and not esoteric. Very informative. Highly recommended. Been listening a decade plus.
R n b there’s many of agencies productions involved in several seasonal shows it was discussed to use reality life threw people and there situation in everyday life and there resolutions it takes a lot people to do this as well as dialogue .
The show has introduced a great variety of historical events to me. This program provides a firm foundation of information about the topics. It is a balance of essential information and commentary from the guests. Mr. Bragg keeps the show in balance.
For the most part the topics are entertaining and always in depth... & I thoroughly enjoy the producer coming in to offer tea or coffee at the end. Bragg is tremendous.
Let me just say that this is one of the very good podcasts for in-depth discussions on an encyclopedic range of topics. However, the pacing of the program is often not satisfactory, and more than occasionally annoying. Often a direct question is asked, and the scholars would ramble on for minutes, not actually answering the questions, prompting the host to frequently interrupt, disrupting the flow of conversation. What they should do is to schedule better in advance, agreeing the relevant questions, terms used, and indispensable background information that must be presented.
Great guests, horrible host.
Outstanding in both breadth and depth - and is so due to rather than in spite of Melvin’s direction and correction.
Varied selection of topics. Excellent panelists.
Brilliant, well-rounded show. Covers a broad spectrum of interesting topics and Melvin is excellent in how he maneuvers and guides the show. I listen to shows repeatedly at work. Keep them coming!
I’m always impressed by Melvin’s ability to move forward thru a subject being discussed with his perfect questions. His guest may stray from the subject and Melvin is able to move the guest back.I’ve never thought of him as rude. I feel he is brilliant! What ever the subject, I’m amazed, that he is able to ask the perfect question at the perfect moment. I’m sure his guests know of and expect his interruptions.
I enjoy Melvin as a commentator, for multiple reasons. Chief among these is that he often asks questions that I was thinking. The fact that he is confident in his questioning, willing to state what he does not know, allows me comfort.
Rated this as 5 stars because of the guests and topics. I agree about Melvyn. I wish he would quit interrupting quite so often and let his guests finish a sentence. Although that does help when one of the guest is a little long winded
I’ve listened to this podcast for years. Most of the topics and guests are terrific, both in the information they provide and their insights. I echo other reviewers concerning Melvin Bragg. His rudeness has worsened over the years. I’m also now distracted by his heavy breathing and paper shuffling. I have to make an effort to ignore the audible breathing of Melvin while a guest is talking. Credit to the guests for making this podcast worthwhile.
This is an outstanding podcast with supplemental materials to make it a mini university lecture. The guests are almost always excellent and interesting. Melvyn Bragg, the host, is brusque to the point of rude, especially to an American ear. He is likely trying to keep people on task but his imperiousness gets old fast to this Anglophile American ear.
I have listened to a few of these and was blown away by the expertise of the guests, but the host constantly interrupts them with his mumbling, quite rude comments. In many of the episodes I listened to, he cuts off the female guests so much that they hardly can even get their information out, and are left with fractional amounts of time to speak compared to their male guests. I was astonished at how blatant it was. I cannot express how much I dislike this host, despite the excellent content of the guests. If they got a new host, I would listen.
Someone falsely claimed the host is sexist. Untrue. Melvyn treats every guest the same. If a guest wanders Bragg gets them back on track by interrupting them and steering them back to the conversation. Male or female every guest is given time to talk. It’s only a 45 minute show. Focus people. Trust me you’ll love this.
I notice the host really freaks out when he hears something he has never heard about before - especially from a woman. A guest started talking about “the matter of Britain” - a literature reference (I think it was in the Tristan and Isolde podcast) anyway he doesn’t like it if anyone presents him any info he isn’t aware of. And of course he just insists on interrupting or telling a guest to hurry up frequently.
This show is super informative and the panelists are wonderful. The host is like a stale biscuit which is one of 2 unfortunate things. The second issue is that this show has so much heavy breathing and lip smacking sounds that aren’t filtered out it’s distracting and annoying.
Cannot believe the host’s grasp of facts, figures and concepts. Keeps the program moving at a pleasant pace. Effective in controlling his academic guests - keeping them on topic.
Melvyn Bragg is so incredibly sexist that I finally had to delete this from my feed. I listened to Bragg interrupt women, tell them to shorten their comments, congratulate them if they kept their comments short, and argue with them. I finally had enough when he told a woman during the “extra time” whom he prevented from making a comment that she had plenty of time given to her to make a point during the regular time. Women academics - boycott this!! Women listeners - delete it!!
I love the guests that come into this show, they were well picked In that they are interesting, dynamic, and extremely knowledgeable on the topic. They explain things well and are very insightful. The host is annoying, he interrupts his guests constantly with questions and his own thoughts. In addition, this may be because I am American, but he mumbles and talks very quickly sometimes so that it’s impossible to hear his 100th interjection. I have mixed feelings about this podcast but I persevere through the bumbling host so I can listen to the great guests
I learn so much from this podcast. There are so many interesting topics covered. I love the style of having a panel of experts to provide evidence/experience and the quick succession of questions from the host. I’ll definitely keep listening.
The podcast does a great job of going in depth for each topic, sometimes a little too much but nonetheless interesting.
I’m a history major in the US and I love this podcast. The guests are extremely knowledgeable and provide excellent context for whatever setting they’re exploring. Thank you for the podcast! I only took off one star because it seems that the host Melvin continually interrupts his guests, particularly the female ones, in a rather rude way. I love listening to their extended answers.
Excellent quality, excellent delivery, excellent content. Thank you.
This is like having coffee once a week with a bunch of fascinating scientists and historians. I enjoy hearing different perspectives and being introduced to new subjects. If you like history or science you will like this. Happy listening.
Love this. Nice little sound bytes on topics and I love Melvin’s persona. I can hear him shaking his cane at the experts
Where else could you find true deep context for some of the most enduring and iconic moments of history and science and culture? An exceptional podcast.
alms for the poor, that listen to feed our hungry minds, and to nourish our pockets with “rich words (that)feed poor mouths, as poor words ...... ——encourage as my dying intensifies and the hides that bind my bones mumify, i leave the spell unadulchratedjk. i must stand out against the glow, as my star shins beyond intention, remistense , each word, each letter, a category ||PostMordem||…2696
Essential listening if you're interested in a range of science, history, society, culture, arts, etc.
The podcast is not showing its artwork once downloaded. really disturbing, plz fix it apple!!!
I recommend this podcast to all my friends- I have enjoyed and benefitted from it for years now. I first discovered it when I was looking for something to listen to while running in New England in the winter, and In Our Time turned what would have been a cold slog into 40 minutes where I found myself listening so hard that I hardly noticed the mud, sleet, or snow drifts. There are enough episodes to easily follow one's interests. Some panels are better than others, but in general an episode gives a good snapshot of the most current academic ideas and attitudes about the topic. Upon a topic that the listener knows nothing of she will gain a good overview, on a familiar one new insights. My go-to.
Consistently fascinating, engaging, and entertaining. I can thank Melvyn for introducing me to Evelyn Waugh, Mary Beard, the evolutionary history of the whale, and so many wonderful episodes. A treasure.
This show is not for the casual listener, but as someone who is passionate about history and likes to hear in depth academic discussion, it delivers in spades.
These podcasts cover every subject in a concise manner and with expert analysis. Everything you want to know, but about which you will never have enough time to read.
Stumbled on In Our Time while looking for a direct link to the BBC Global News podcast a few years ago. I have to say at first I found it a bit dry when compared to more audience focused podcasts. Now I am completed addicted to Mr. Bragg and his erudite and knowledgeable exploration of basically everything worth knowing in (and outside) of our world. Fascinating discussion with learned experts on topics ranging from Jayne Eyre to Echolocation and everything in between. Mr. Bragg is an excellent inquisitor and asked probing and knowledgeable questions on every facet of the days’ subject. In order to fully appreciate the talent of Mr. Bragg one MUST listen to his interview with Dennis Potter which is as beautiful a thing as can be and allowed Mr. Potter to express his views on life and art (which were very prescient particularly his perspective on Mr. Murdoch and the advent of False News) in his last days. Really a show of the highest excellence and something that represents the best of our western Anglophone culture and the true purpose of the BBC.
I always leave each installment of In Our Time with some new insight or idea, and often a new book or books to seek out. Simply presented, with scholarly perspectives for the curious mind, expertly guided by Melvyn Bragg. Bravo!
Four Quartets This was an interesting episode. All the episodes are enlightening and rich for me. In your concluding remarks you said that Eliot wrote ‘all shall be wellk,and then US dropped itsbombs. Ithink Eliot would not have envisaged such a possibility. He was simply quoting from Dame Julian of Norwich. ThisI learned from online search. Chandrasekharan Chennai India
Preparing for a 7 hour bus trip home & was looking for something interesting to listen to on the way, figured since some of the shows I enjoy watching on YouTube are BBC 4 programs I would take a look at what they had to offer in the way of podcasts. Picked out a few episodes that caught my eye & the first one i listened to completely blew my mind! The podcast was about Ben Franklin in Englan, I assumed they were just discussing the thing about the bones found under the house he rented- which they did cover, but as things progresed they went into why he was in England & his orignal leanings toward concilliation, they talked about the events that lead to our grievances that lead to the declaration of our independance from England -one of the most important reasons being the taxation without representation is probably the first one we learn in elementary school, but I have never heard exactly WHY. Listening to this discussion I found out that we were given a charter that said we were the only ones allowed to impose taxes, but when England taxed us they were in violation of that guarantee, & combined with the other issues we had no choice but to stand up & tell England NO. I was so exciteed & I have enjoyed the other podcasts I've been listening to just as much! I love the way the topics are being discussed & dissected, the guests challeneged in their answers & made to defend their positions! Looking forward to listening to the ones currently downloading, my brain is the better for these wonderful programs!! BBC, you are the best!!
I’ve been listening for almost a decade! The only podcast that has never let me down!
Unlike so many talk shows and podcasts, these are a series of well moderated, professional discussions on a wide variety of topics that are educational, thought provoking and easy to listen to while you are working on more mundane tasks. And given there are over 800 on file, they will last a good long while for the most ravenous listener,
Thank you BBC for this wonderful programme, which looks closely at subjects that often get little or no attention outside academia.
I really respect anyone who puts any effort and time into creating something. I really do. However, sometimes, they just cannot help themselves. I found the subjects discussed in the podcast to be very interesting but the damm host just cannot help himself from talking over, under and around the EXPERTS that he invites on the show. The guy keeps interrupting EXPERTS who try to answer questions he just asked or trying to explain a certain fine point. I guarantee you that the host’s bad habits, irresponsible behavior and antics will annoy you within 12 minutes. If you are patience like me and give him the whole hour on the first try, be careful and don’t use any sharp objects for a day afterwards as you may hurt yourself or someone you love intentionally. Now I can finally delete this podcast and get my sanity back.
The entire BBC series, In Our Time, is outstanding. They go into depths, details, tangents, digressions, explorations that US programs simply do not match. The speakers are wonderful. Complex information is presented in a civilized, engaging, leisurely pace such that any one may enjoy. They are simply the best podcasts I have ever enjoyed. Brilliant work!!!!
A masterclass in topics as varied as can be imagined. Long may it run.
The best free education you will ever receive.
All The in Our Time Podcasts are genuinely superb. The host keeps the academics on topic with a firm hand and sharp humor. Columbia University provides links to many of the podcasts so that students can use it as a resource in its core curriculum. Any educated person will find much stimulation and pleasure here. I listen to these podcasts when I want to reward myself.
Scholarly yet accessible, light-hearted yet substantive, this long-running series teaches me so much! thank-you!
If every person on Earth would just take 50 minutes to listen to this intelligent, and insightful discussion, on any of the topics covered, World Peace would surely come pass. The inspirational stories and little known, but perspective altering arguments and contexts presented by scholarly experts, captained by the Moderator General, elevate the quality of discovery to where we’ll all thirst for more. Huge library of content; everyone will find topics interesting to them - spread the word.
Melvyn is so subtly hilarious and extremely witty. He is SO charming and brilliant. I go to sleep every night listening to his soothing voice. I think he’s my soulmate. If you see this, Melvyn, thank you for enriching my life. 😽😽😽😽 Also, Melvyn interrupts because that’s his job to guide the discussion and make sure there is time to cover all the important points. The experts are there to give information, but Melvyn’s role is difficult and important, and he does it with such tact and elegance. He is truly a pro.
I love this show and look forward to new episodes. One small note; please have Melvyn back off the microphone when clearing his throat. It’s quite jarring.
This podcast is always entertaining and brings you through the life of an idea or a person without any nonsense or filler. I do love how the bonus content always ends with the producer asking everyone if they want coffee or tea.
The contents from his guests is excellent in spite of him, not because of his skill as a moderator. He talks over and interrupts his guests.
The absolute essential
I feel that I am getting a second education in the liberal arts and sciences. Consistently great.
Absolutely love this podcast. Summer break is too long!! Wide ranging topics and guests. I go back and listen to older podcasts multiple times.
Melvyn is an expert interviewer and I love the variety of topics.
Love the topics, great guests with lots of passion and knowledge to share. The host is, unfortunately, very rude to women- much more likely to interrupt them, dismiss them and talk down to them. With a better host this would be amazing.
This is my favorite podcast. I wait for releases on Thursdays and just dread the few weeks when they take a summer break. Thank you BBC!
...is so good with presenting philosophy that it got me into listening to other philosophy podcasts. This one is still my favorite.
I love the topics explored and enjoy the perspectives brought to each subject by the panel of academics and experts. But good lord, Melvyn Bragg is past his prime—he runs over guests and inserts himself into the discussion way too much. More and more he sounds like a doddering old man.
Excellent podcast that covers a wide range of interesting topics.
For anyone who is looking for a thoughtful, poignant and intelligent way to pass the time, In Our Time is one such way. Melvyn Bragg's voice is one of the most recognizable in radio and, whether the topic is Hildegard of Bingen, Pliny the Elder or Photosynthesis, there is something for everyone, always delivered in a relaxing, calming way. I really hope things like this stick around!
...because the accents are SO plummy and the discussion is SO civil. But it is not boring, just soothing. Insomnia has no chance against this podcast. Often, I listen again the next day , while awake. Really interesting subjects sometimes. Other times, obscure, maybe interesting.
I am a long-time listener and absolutely love this podcast. There is only one major issue and that is that Melvyn has an annoying habit of interrupting and talking over his guests. If this was an occaisional flaw, then I would have rated it 5 stars, but its constant. Come-on man, take a step back, listen, and quit interjecting yourself.
Lively discussions about interesting topics that run the gamut from science, history & the arts.
I found this by accident and listened to two episodes; I was amazed and posted on Facebook about the interviews. Thank you for this great show.
One of the few podcasts that consistently bring a smile to my face. Smart and well presented, the topics are always a pleasant surprise.
The very best podcast I listen to. Great topics, well presented with interesting people each week.
So intellectual and entertaining. Well done!!!
I really enjoy listening to these various topics-- some familar and some unfamiliar.
Looking forward to the return of this series.
The guests are great and I enjoy them until the host pops in with some idiotic comment.
This podcast keeps you engaged in thinking about the vast scope of human knowledge and experience. It is everything you wish your undergrad liberal arts degree would have been. The guests are the best scholars in their field, and the host is the perfect student. I listen to every new episode as soon as I can, and often go into the archives for more.
This is my favorite podcast, it's smart and civil and funny. I always learn something new, and the topics vary wildly! So good!
Every week they bring in three new guests, who unleash a lifetime's worth of knowledge over the course of 45 minutes, on topics that cover the entire spectrum of human knowledge. I eagerly await each new week, when I will get to hear Melvyn's introduction, be introduced to the new discussants, and discover the fascinating story behind some new piece of history, science, art, religion, or culture.
I went to Cambridge University for a year as an undergrad and this show took me way back. I felt like a goofy 20 year old again; drinking beer in The Eagle while attempting to eavesdrop on conversations precisely like the ones moderated by Melvyn Bragg's In Our Time. I love the plurality of thought and the diversity of topic. From Circadian Rhythms to Beowulf - treat yourself and get your learn on!
Consistently interesting, fantastic guests, very informative.
Great conversations, intelligent people, candy for your mind.
This podcast goes more deeper on scientific topics than you find in other podcasts. If you like to nerd out on the wonders of the photon (or other scientific phenomenon) for an hour while driving to work this podcast is for you. If you are not innately interested in science, then you might find this show dry and boring. Here the listeners are treated like grown ups who find learning rewarding for its own sake.
When this pod does a show on a topic you are interested in , its great. 45 minutes of researched , thoughtful , considered comments. In depth and insightful.
Melvyn Bragg, what an extraordinarily talented and good human you are. As one of your most enthusiastic podcast fans, who will tell anyone who will listen that they absolutely MUST subscribe to "In Our Time", I hope you know how so thoroughly respected, loved and honoured you are. You nourish our minds with the vast array of subjects (and special guests) and our souls with your consistently thoughtful approach. Thank goodness you're still a young man (!!!) so that we may all look forward to many more years of "In Our Time". Thank you, truly, thank you so much.
Excellent program! Wouldn't miss an episode. Thanks so much!
If you are a history junkie as I am this is a great podcast.
Wonderful series. Where else can you hear academics discussing topics such as this.
I just wanted to say that Mr. Bragg may have the best job going - great interviewer/facilitator. I also like the addition of the bonus material.
I just love this show. It ranges from physics to African history to biography. No matter what the subject, the content is always interesting and illuminating. Bragg and his guests know how to give enough background for the uninitiated while still getting into some real depth. I’m so glad that I’ve been able to download the back episodes that were broadcast before I stumbled upon this podcast.
Melvyn, thank you for this podcast, your guests, and the topics you choose. The breadth of material and the depth of discourse fills my commute and expands my own horizons.
Great variety of topics, explained and commented upon by bright people who speak well. But the host, Melvin, is unbearably sexist. In older episodes, he would interrupt women regularly. Perhaps someone alerted him to this behavior, but he still interrupts women more frequently than he does men. In the Beowolf episode, he asks a guest to read from the original text. When she mentions that, in honor of International Women's Day, she'll read an excerpt about one of the women, he laughs, and continues to laugh as she begins to read. Later, in the "extra" material, two of the female guests note that the group did not discuss the role of women in Beowolf, to which Melvin replies "you got your plug." Listening to him is incredibly aversive. He is nails on the chalkboard. I love the content, but I'm not sure I'll keep listening. It's an unpleasant experience, wondering what unenlightened comment will come out of the host's mouth next.
Great show. Interesting subjects... Mr. Bragg keeps it spot on. Could you do a show on Jan Zizka? Or Czech nobility...
Please stop talking down to women.
This is an amazing podcast. Each week, I learn something. Very enjoyable.
Melvyn's knack for asking the right questions and then giving his guests ample time to answer makes this an info-packed pod. So many things I didn't know and never knew I wanted to learn.
diversity, high-quality, and fun people. if you love to experience podcasters at its finest
Melvin continues to put together some of the best, most interesting shows I've ever listened to. The cumulative knowledge that he brings to the world with his guests is astounding. He moves the topics along, getting deep and then widening to the larger scope of ever topic that I really get to learn something new. This is one of my favorites!
Melvin and his guests never disappoint. It's such a pleasure to listen to such an intelligent and stimulating show.
this is why the BBC rules. intelligent talk. expert opinion and true discusson. the time just flies by.
A wide range of subjects, civilized conversation, people who are passionate about their subjects, and a host who can guide the conversation without intruding. It’s like receiving a classical education without knowing it. I like the addition of the afterwards conversation. It makes me feel like I was in the studio. I do miss the blog though.
6 ****** if I could
Always an enjoyable listen!
I'm an American in my 20s who stumbled upon this recently and have become enthralled. The perfect blend of history, literature, and science, shared by experts and a delightfully curious host. Bragg seems to pick topics that genuinely fascinate him, and he doesn't disappoint. I've learned to never skip episodes because the shows I think I won't enjoy often become my favorites
Simply the most consistently engaging podcasts. Keep up the excellent work!
religiious claptrap and I cant get it stop.
I look forward to each discussion, even of topics I don't think I'll enjoy. I always do this, though. Well done!
There is nothing to compare this with: great span of culture-related topics addressed by smart, friendly, accessible scholars. Bragg is intense, does his homework, knows when to defer to specialists, keeps everyone focused, and is funny, too. Sometimes addresses the "British experience"--feels focused on on culture's view of the world. Often, though, it feels like a lens on the world--something broader, bigger. I like both types of shows.
The perfect discussion podcast. Interesting topics, great, knowledgeable guests, fair treatment all around. My only wish is that they had more time - by the end of the podcast they're finally getting to the interesting parts and they run out of time!
Absolutely first-rate intellectual discussions.
Bragg presents a supder-fast weekly roundtable discussion with overtly qualified experts on philosophy, historical figures, scientific discoveries, and everything in between. It's a no-nonsense way to suddenly feel worldly and over-aquainted. It always leads me to exploring and reading further into the topics, from Benjamin Franklin to Early Chinese History.
Thank you Melvyn Bragg. What a treat it is to listen to In our Time. I may not be rich, but I am enriched by this program and indebted to Melvyn Bragg for engaging with brilliant intellectuals on a variety of subjects in a most engaging way. My brain and imagination is tickled by the stimulation. Oh, and the accents are so delightful for a yankee to listen to.
The breadth and depth are so perfect for the dilitante (not a pejorative) that it should be required for the well rounded. IOT is a throwback to the time when the student was considered to be an important customer.
Educational, informative, entertaining and pleasant! Well done
The best History podcast that I've found on iTunes. Great variety of topics and the panel setting makes it more engaged discussion then lesson (a problem I've had with other pods on the subject). I'd recommend starting with a familiar topic to open up the series. I've had no problem with the production.
It's rare to hear thorough and knowledgable discussion on such varied topics.
This podcast covers all sorts of topics with a moderated panel of experts. The shows run under 45 minutes. The discussions are intellectual and detailed, yet still engaging for even an unfamiliar listener. One downside is sound quality. Speakers' voices can be unclear and vary widely, loud-to-soft, which the producers do not rectify. Best listen in a quiet room, not outside.
I wish there was more. Why isn't more of radio this educational?
I enjoy all the In Our Time podcasts, they're remarkable and interesting whether it's history, culture, religion or philosophy. Excellent. Wish they'd consider the following topics to explore: The Book of Common Prayer and/or The King James Bible, Paladian architecture/Inigo Jones Sir John Soane Regency Society, The rise of English gentry, the Danelaw,
The content is interesting and I enjoy listening to it. My only issue is I have a hard time understand what the host and some of the guest are saying. The mispronunciation of words, thick accents and low volume make it hard to listen to at times. It would be great if the host and the guest would ennuciate and speak more clearly.
The great thing about the modern world is that a podcast this brainy can reach those of us who need the challenge. I don't love every topic, but I always learn something. Bragg can coax academic experts into enthusiasm and clarity and topics that I have only vaguely heard of, I now could provide an accurate summary.
If this were the only reason for the Internet then if would have been worthwhile.
Great, varied topics, learned, articulate guests and a moderator who knows where he wants to get to. You'll learn something -- usually a lot -- from every single episode. Brilliant.
always stimulating and informative and just quirky enough for a Californian.
I listened to a half dozen or so random episodes and found them tedius. The question answer format drags things out. In 45 minutes, you get less information than some of the better 15 minute programs.
Is the truth.
Plus access to the archives demonstrates the consistent excellence of the show.
Enlightening and engaging.
Solid production - good stuff :)
Melvyn and his gang are my favorite exercise mates! When I run, I always have IOT on my iPod. Personal favorite topics are medieval history and technology. Always informative and worth listening. Thank you Melvyn and BBC4 for this wonderful show.
Everything sounds better with an English accent. Doesn't hurt to have Cambridge and Oxford educated experts
Enjoy the wide range of topics, the expert commentary, and the focused exposition.
Wonderful variety of subjects
Truly unequaled in quality as well as subject diversity.
Naturally one is not keen to look forward to the event of one’s demise. However after discovering Lord Bragg’s “out of this world” program- In Our Time; it has come to my attention that, if there is one thing I must take with me to the next world, it is the complete recording of his program. The word “Thank you” with all its meaning, etymology, and explanation in the English Oxford Dictionary would not suffice to extend my gratitude. Gideon Sahle Los Angels CA
A weekly exploration - a 30000ft view - of the most fascinating ideas in our culture. Expertly hosted by Melvyn, always wonderful.
One of the most intelligent and interesting podcasts around, I can't stress that enough. Absolutely fascinating and extremely informative, every week.
Stumbled across this podcast by accident and found myself completely hooked. Lively discussions about a wide-range of topics by knowledgeable people with a great enthusiasm for their subject. Bragg, as moderator for these round table discussions, has no peer. Some of them have been so fascinating, I've listened several times over. I recommend this program for anyone who likes to THINK and is curious about the world. My only gripe is that I can't get previous seasons on my iPod!
One of the best programmes I have ever listened to. Congratulations to Melvyn and the producers on superb work! I will be extremely disappointed if it ever goes off the air. And to all those listeners who read this, sign up for Melvyn's post-show newsletter. Not only will it typically add to the immense treasure trove of knowledge just recently discussed but will surely make smile at the musings of a seasoned broadcaster.
I first listened to this show when I was in college because my history professor had us listen to episodes from the archives that related to the topics we were covering in class. I quickly became hooked. I've mostly listened to the programs related to the humanities or the social sciences, but the ones on scientific topics are fascinating as well. Thank goodness there is such an intelligent, interesting program on the radio.
This is one of the BEST, most informative pods around. Love the topics and the guests. If they could just find someone a lot less pompous and annoying than Bragg to host, it would be a "Fiver"...
Love this podcast, especially now Bragg has toned down his annoyance a little. Obscure subjrcts discussed in great detail with amazing minds.
I really enjoy these podcasts for the most part. But the host, Melvyn Bragg, is very testy sometimes. If he asks a question from a guest and they don't immediately get to what he wants to know, he really overreacts. I figure, they are experts in their field and they probably know when some background is needed. OR maybe they are making the most of a not-so-great question? But he acts like these university professors, etc., are wasting his time. This does not happen in every podcast, but it happens often enough to be very annoying. I can't imagine inviting a guest onto a show, and then treating them so rudely. Sometimes I wonder if he just dislikes a guest, he can be that nasty!
I find these podcasts remarkable. There is a wide range of topics and the expert guests can answer any question posed to them. I am addicted to listening to them whilst I exercise. It helps the time fly by. Yes Melvin mumbles a bit but he has a sense of humor and I find him quite erudite.
It's a consistently smart, flawless podcast. Amazing!
Forget what the negative reviewers say. I've learned so much from the discussions on these programs. Fantastic content. Great.
Just great info presented perfectly. Bragg is one of a kind, he wrangles academics so that they totally enthrall me with their discussion of topics I only moments before had no interest in. I don't like you if you don't love this show.
Favorite podcast, hands down.
He may be pompous, and he does have ticks he should get rid of (the mumbled aside about the interview, not the topic), but speaking as a broadcast professional, Bragg is trying to cover huge swaths of topic and MUST interrupt experts who, otherwise, would expound for hours. It's a simple fact of doing a 45-minute show: you can't cover every detail. The guests know this.
I really wanted to like this podcast, but after listening to a dozen or so different ones I can't get around the fact that, for me, the host ruins what should be a very interesting and cerebral podcast. Melvyn seems to be in love with the sound of his often incoherent, rambling mumbling. That would be bad enough, but even worse is the fact that he talks over and interrupts his guests. You almost wonder why he asks them on, except perhaps to act as a foil. And finally he acts so bored most of the time that he makes the subjects dry and dull. He is like the boring history teacher who ruins what could be an interesting subject.
I really wanted to love this podcast. I subscribed eagerly and started listening...and trying decipher what I heard. It wasn't the accent; it's that the production values are bad and the speakers do not enunciate. Between the low microphones and the poor diction, I could comprehend only 50% of the podcast.
Way over my head but how else would I learn more about life's subjects?
Wish I could download years and years worth
Wildly different subjects and always fascinating. Whether it's the Delphic Oracle or the history of tea, you'll leave with new insights on the world.
...except that he sometimes treats his female guests a bit more harshly in that "stupid girl" kind of way and doesn't really give then a chance to clarify. Other than that, good show.
I cannot sufficiently praise this show. Some weeks are better than others, but it is consistently first rate. So many times I have finished the program and then gone off to hunt down further information on the topic discussed -- always with a sense of gratitude to the show. Please keep up the great work. Melvyn for President!!
It would be a dream come true to have access to the archives of "In Our Time" with Melvyn Bragg on iTunes. Pretty please?
Where can I find more of these? And why aren't there more archived ones for download? These are amazing conversations on fascinating topics. It's like meditation to just start one up and listen to smart, civil people discussing a complex topic. We need more of this these days. A lot more.
The title says it all, the self-contained format of the podcast and the varied themes makes this the most informative and intelligent free download on itunes. Well done Lord Bragg
He comes across as arrogant and boorish. The attitude gets old quickly and overwhelms the subject matter. Needs to take himself far less seriously.
This is candy for the mind. I actually look forward to my time on the bus so I can listen to this podcast. The only thing that's wrong is that it will not allow for downloading earlier podcasts. That's too bad because the archive goes back more that 10 years. That's a lot of commutes.
Disappointed Charlie Rose doesn't podcast? Here's your consolation.
This is the best podcast I've ever listened to, which I've been doing for 2 years now. Can't recommend it highly enough!
A consistently high level of discussion -- this is *the* podcast for educated people who want to understand complex historical events and ideas in depth. Always enjoyable, always enlightening, never a mere gloss, like so many educational podcasts. Thank you for making this wonderful podcast!
One of the best podcasts out there.
Get the best minds together and then Mr Bragg on the mic. This is as good as it gets for educating yourself and finding academic wonder. I listened to a string of these podcasts whilst walking on my own through Yosemite National Park. An uplifting and unforgettable experience. I love and revere this guy. Please don't stop.
This is a superb listening experience.
I love when Melvyn gets annoyed with his intellectual guests, aka when they don't seam to follow his script and go off on some tangent. Ahh he is so smart ....
This is the podcast I look forward to the most every week. Informative, educational, and interesting topics. Melvin keeps the conversation on topic and interjects insightful questions and occasionally some witty levity. Most highly recommended. So much so that I felt compelled to write my first review of a podcast.
This is the most insightful History podcast going. Thought provoking & engaging -- please keep the time travel going.
This podcast is like the best of college forums-- it collects experts on a subject and then discusses the important concepts and events of that subject. It is categorized as "history" but it is about literature and events and ideas that are significant today. They don't have to draw out the contemporary connections-- rather they spend time telling us why the subject is important for all time, not just today. Wonderful!
This is the best podcast to which I subscribe--bar none. I look forward to each one, and I often listen to them again and again. I am actually on my spouse's account because I insisted he subscribe as well, and I'm making sure he does! The spouse adds this: As someone who was introduced to this recently by my wife and who loved the one program I could access, I wish you would put the others back on so that those who just discover this great podcast could access earlier podcasts like most sites.
There is none other like this in radio or podcast-sphere. The ideas are profoundly developed (as much as possible in a 40 minute program anyway) yet quite accessible. Best of all, the topics characteristically explore the foundational pillars of thought and culture (philosophy, natural theology, history, theoretical sciences). This is in contrast to much of the programming on NPR that betrays a sadly insular pragmatism concerning what constitutes a worthy intellectual enterprise (typically centered around news, politics, and contemporary culture). Don't tune in here if you're looking for a chat about the causes and cures of the current economic downturn. But by all means partake if you are curious about a 6th century scholar-statesman's inquiry into the universal human dilemma of finding consolation in the face of uncertainty, injustice, and looming mortality. Here's another telling contrast: Melvyn Bragg moderates with a kind of masculine edge (at times even confrontational, although respectfully, with the panelists) in a style congruent with the intellectual rigor of the program and in a refreshing departure from the stereotypically amorphous, effeminate voices that grace NPR. My only complaint: it's only 40 minutes!
These podcasts are very interesting on a case by case basis for the rational, insightful discourse prodded by Melvyn Bragg's carefully planned questions. To my mind, though, and the factor that sets them apart from virtually every other podcast is the courageous exploration of so many divergent topics. Recent episodes have covered historic subjects like Henry VIII's annexation of the monasteries as well as the physics of time. The subject matter is unfailingly important (Henry's conversion of the monasteries effectively created the Church of England and launched centuries of catholic persecution in England), and the guests are always well-picked, knowledgeable, polite and happy to share. Every new episode is a highlight on my schedule. It's hard to imagine a commercial media company going down this path. Way to go, BBC!
I look forward to it every week. It's obviously UK-centric, but even the British history issues are interesting. Some of the topics and guests are so sublime that it is laugh-out-loud funny at times...but always interesting. A good way to kill 45 minutes.
'In Our Time' has everything I could hope for from a podcast - it's intelligent, it covers a wide range of topics and it goes into more depth than most other programs of its length. Fantastic!!
I hope that iTunes and BBC Radio 4 will make available the past shows of In Our Time. They were only up on iTunes for a week before they were replaced, and I would love to have another chance to listen and download them. Thank You.
Only podcast I listen to regularly. Count on it for a well-regulated intelligent discussion of significant historical concepts, events, and personalities. These may be scientific, philosophical, political, literary, or religious. Bragg chooses his panelists well (usually British academics), prepares well, runs a tight ship--no maundering on pointlessly here--and grinds no axes. Topics range into the unexpected and unfamiliar but rarely into the obscure, and never the trivial. Hate it when Bragg takes a vacation and I have to do without.
This podcast has been missing for a couple months now, and it's a shame. Please come back, Melvyn!
But where has it gone? oh itunes please get this link fixed...
Simple without being dumbed down. I love the depth of the topics and the variety of the topics. Metaphysics one day and the next the spread of Islam. The style is great with each person taking their time to give their information. Bragg should also be given credit for being a great host.
It's incredible that programming this intelligent exists "in our time" - that is, that it inhabits the same universe as Big Brother and MTV. The level of discourse is unbelievably high yet still accessible to the average curious listener. Bragg is somewhat pushier than the British ideal (I suspect a debating background) but is a master at drawing the best out of his brilliant guests. I find myself listening to particularly interesting shows two or three times over. Bravo! This is one of the best radio programs of all time, and God bless Melvyn Bragg for sharing it with us.
This is one of the best podcasts available, and it is baffling that the programs are not archived. To have previous programs available would be a great service to your listeners.
I was introduced to this series when I downloaded the podcast on the subject of one of my favorite authors, Albert Camus. I expected very little and certainly did not anticipate subscribing to the series, however, I immediately became addicted to this podcast. I loved the discussion about Albert Camus and have thoroughly enjoyed every topic in this podcast. The presentation and discussion of each weekly subject consistently captures my attention. Formerly, I would not look forward to listening to seemingly uninteresting topics like "The Dissolution of the Monasteries" or "Ada Lovelace". Now, I know that Melvyn Bragg and his guest scholars will present fascinating details about each topic. This podcast is easily one of my favorites!
Engaging discussions on interesting topics.
He has intelligent speakers. I learn something with every episode. He goes over the issues well. The topics are varied and interesting. This is a a true gift to itunes!
I recommend this podcast to anyone fascinated by ideas. The subject matter is broad and the guests are extremely knowledgable. Mr. Bragg does an excellent job in asking insightful questions, but doesn't hog the spotlight. I look forward to downloading it each week.
This is the best podcast period, exclamation point, exclamation point.!! The topics are always fresh and interesting, and when they are not ... like when I forced myself to listen to the show about plate ... tectonics ... zzzzzzz ... I was surprised by how interesting Bragg made them. Super excellent. Awesome excellent. Incredible excellent.
There is no cruft, Melvyn starts right in on a topic and gets to the meat of the discussion immediately. I have listened to every podcast over the last year and not once felt robbed of my time. This is among my top 3 podcasts of any type, and I hope the BBC will keep producing this for many, many years to come!
I love this podcast, simply love it. Categorizing it under history just doesn't do it justice. Even the scientific topics, which are a bit lost on me, are made fascinating by the conversational format of this program. The participants are always learned but never self-consciously intellectual. Bragg is an excellent host who guides the conversation without being pushy. This one is an absolute must for people who like to think and learn.
This is a great podcast, civil, learned, informative, but there a TON of other episodes that used to be on i-tunes, and aren't available that way anymore. What happened to them? I think you can still hear them via their website, but I sure would like to have them on the i-pod.
The thoughts and opinions of some of today's brightest academic luminaries pair with presenter Melvyn Bragg's wit, charm and considerable intellect to create the most intelligent, reasoned, fascinating, and relevant programming available virtually anywhere. You won't find anything like "In Our Time" on American radio or television. "In Our Time" has been a landmark in my intellectual development and will surely be so in yours. The downloadable podcast format makes this programme even more enjoyable as one can revisit past shows and gain even more from the rich discussions than upon initial listening. A must.
To classify this under history does not do it justice. The topics covered are truly catholic - while Melvyn Bragg obviously has something of a personal bias towards literature and culture he also chairs many truly informative and challenging discussions on science, religion, philosophy and history. The presentation is snappy and entertaining but never superficial. The participants are always true experts in their field who are able to communicate well to the layman. While I have tried listening to many podcasts this is the one I come back to again and again. Nothing else comes close.
This BBC program is excellent, presented in high quality format. But no episodes are currently available. What's up with that? iTunes should bring this podcast back ASAP.
Smart, incisive, thought-provoking -- simply the most invigorating podcast out there. Melvyn Bragg is brilliant at exploring a variety of topics, from science to culture, from personality to history, and getting his sometimes stuffy academic guests to "play the game" and enlighten us. I only wish iTunes had a deeper archive so that I could listen to the podcasts from early last year. No other podcast approaches this one in accessbility, intelligence and lack of pretension.
I look forward to the new podcast every week. For the unfamiliar, each week there's a new topic (the Opium War, Ghengis Khan, Anarchism, Heart of Darkness - as you can see a wide range) and the host has 3 experts on to discuss the background, immediate event and the long-term impact. The moderator does an excellent job of keeping the academics from bogging down and clearly does his prep work to bring the more critical elements to the surface. Listen and you'll be hooked.
Frankly, I've never been a history buff, and some of the subjects fail to hold my interest. But those that do - wow. It's wonderful to listen to experts on esoteric historical and cultural artifacts effortlessly bringing the past to life. The recent episode on anesthesia was anything but anesthetic.
I rarely miss this podcast. My commute just vanishes. In fact, I'm sometimes stuck in my driveway until it's over. For the history buff, this is pure pleasure.
I've been listening to this podcast since receiving an iPod Nano for Christmas in 2005. I've always been fond of BBC & NPR broadcasts, but this was unknown & inaccessible to me until then and it's become my absolute favorite. I only wish they would make the archives available in MP3 format. The discussion is always interesting; Melvin Bragg does an excellent job of leading a fairly comprehensive discussion of complex topics in under an hour!
I hear a lot of science podcasts and in my humble opinion this one is excellent if you want to hear serious discussions about various historic trends and figures. I get new insights in every episode because experts talk about the topics in an understandable way. They lay out the big picture and show new connections between different areas.
I am immensely impressed with this podcast. It is extremely informational, interesting, and covers such a diversity of topics.
Love this podcast--You never know what the subject under discussion might be, but it doesn't matter. It's always intelligent, articulate, fascinating. Thanks for letting me listen in!
You know all that juvenile behavior you get on other 'talk shows': * Hyper-competitive guests obsessed with outdoing each other. * Guests who rigidly ignore each other's contributions (unless they're crudely trashing them) * Everyone talking at once. Louder and louder. Well, there's none of that here! The standard of discussion on this podcast can't be found anywhere else. Quality.
Didn't get that trip to Oxford....well this is just as good. Soooo British and thoughtful and a wide variety of topics...GREAT mind candy.
This is the most education and entertaining podcast I've yet found. The sheer breadth of subject matter keeps the show from ever becoming dull--although the insightful questions of the host and the in depth, entertaining answers of the panelists would never allow that to happen, even if the subject were the same every week. With a rotating cast of guest panelists, I would expect the quality to vary, but whatever selection process the producers use must be working. The panelists are engaging and respectful of each other, even in their disagreements, and I never fail to finish a podcast without learning something. Bravo!
Where else can I hear people talk about Emperor Charlemagne one week and the Riemann Zeta function the next? The evolution of mammals and then the search for the graviton. This series is simply amazing. There are probably few other ways to expand your brain this much just by playing your iPod.
"In Our Time" is, quite simply, the reason I listen to podcasts. Host Melvyn Bragg moderates three guests on a range of topics--art, culture, history, math, science--and the result is nothing short of fascinating. The format, structure and civility of the discussion make it absolutely priceless in getting the point, and the topics are often things I'd never pick up a book about, but the topics always end up being categorically spectacular. Would that there was something so enlightening on American radio these days.
Whatever the subject - philosophy, science, history, or ? - you WILL learn something from this show. Fascinating insights and perspectives. One of the best.
In Our Time makes me feel like I am back in college, attending an interesting course in the humanities. The topics stretch the mind. The moderator is knowledgeable in all of the topics, but collects the best minds to discuss the subjects. Topics range from esoteric historic events (such as the Field of Gold) to the broadest topics (such as Gravity).
The "In Our Time" series pulls the best contemporary thinkers and scholars into a roundtable discussion to discuss issues of importance: politics, religion, culture, history, philosophy, science, literature, etc. The host finds new scholars each week to discuss a particular topic. Recent topics include a roundtable on astrophysics which attempts to answer--as best we currently know--what the universe is made of. The program was fascinating. Another recent program discusses the origins of angels and how the human concept of angels has evolved over time. If you are looking for a podcast to really make you think, this podcast is for you. You will be hard pressed to find such an interesting discussion in other podcasts.