Aggregated reviews for Lend Me Your Ears | A Podcast About Shakespeare and Modern Politics

Readers and audiences have turned to Shakespeare’s greatest plays for their insights into power and performance, sex and religion, demagoguery and populism. Every month, Slate’s Isaac Butler takes listeners deep into a different play to find out what Shakespeare has to say about politics in our troubled age. This podcast is made possible by Slate Plus members, who will get full-length bonus episodes. Find out more at

Fascinating and insightful   (5/5)

Excellent look at these key plays and how they remain relevant to our society. I wish Slate would make another season.

I feel 10x smarter   (5/5)

Wow—I feel like I can talk about Shakespeare and Politics with confidence now. Entertaining and fascinating podcast—please have another season!

More please!!   (5/5)

This podcast is so fantastic, please do another season!!

Butler is brilliant   (5/5)

This podcast brought Shakespeare’s work to life by providing context for 6 well selected plays. Isaac Butler was so intellectually stimulating, now that I have finished this limited series, I want more Shakespeare 😉. Thank you-Slate.

Teaching Othello   (5/5)

In college I once played Iago. I wish I had had the opportunity to hear this podcast. Micah

Great production even if you never read Shakespeare thoroughly   (5/5)

Great interpretation that brings the historical contexts and the unchanging existential questions together.

The Best Podcast Ever!   (5/5)

Wow! Just wow! This is without question my favorite podcast of all time.

More!   (5/5)

Need more!

I Wish There Was More   (4/5)

It would be terrific if this insightful and provocative series could be revived.

Where is season 2?????   (5/5)

Soo good!!!

Well done   (5/5)

I know this is a mini-series but I wish it had more episodes. I’ve listened to every episode at least three times. Really great work, Slate

Great show   (5/5)

I’ve enjoyed this very much and hope there’s more to come.

Modern Themes in Shakespeare Plays   (4/5)

This podcast was a great listen and drew some really interesting connections between the plays and the commentary that they can provide even on our modern day situations (particularly politics). There were occasionally a couple of dry moments for me, hence the 4 stars, but I was overall engaged and learned a lot!

So much fun   (5/5)

I only hope this series comes back. It was a great listen.

Suit the action to the word   (5/5)

Good stuff for people who like to read the Bard. But Old Bill didn’t write these glorious plays to be read; he wrote these scripts to be performed. So if you really want to know what’s going on with Shakespeare ‘s, get together with friends or like minded people and act out the plays. You will be glad you did.

Fantastic Shakespeare analysis!   (5/5)

This show does a fantastic job of analyzing Shakespeare's plays within their own time and also connecting them to our time. This is history and commentary at its best. I wish the creaters were doing all of Shakespeare's plays instead of six of them!

OUTSTANDING! Riveting and fun   (5/5)

I just finished Othello and it was amazing. Ayana Thompson is brilliant and so dynamic. The whole podcast is a perfect balance of history, culture, drama, and modern relevance

A Favorite   (5/5)

I couldn’t love this more - thank you for keeping this level of reading and insight alive

A great podcast!   (5/5)

It's the best podcast ever!!! I love it! 💕


I’ve always been fascinated by Shakespeare but too lazy to actually read any play that wasn’t assigned to me (and even then frequently deferred to the Cliff Notes). This podcast makes me want to revisit - and in the meantime gives FASCINATING insight into the plays, the man, the time and the timelessness- as well as the particular applicability to the turbulent times we’re going through right now. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!

Brilliant on two levels   (5/5)

This podcast is worth listening to just for the brilliant manner in which it explains Shakespeare’s plays in their original historical context. Then there is the terrific bonus of discovering how relevant the plays are to our current social and political climate.

Love this podcast   (5/5)

Have been eagerly consuming each episode immediately upon its release. Especially great for those of us who desperately miss grad school...

FASCINATING (even if you don't care about English lit or politics)!!!   (5/5)

I'm not much of an English or Poly-Sci nerd, but I decided to listen to this out of curiousity...and I was VERY pleasantly surprised! This podcast is entertaining, even if you're just listening for a story, and extremely relevant to our times!

Shakespeare for Today   (5/5)

This incredible podcast has made Shakespeare even more enjoyable as it delves into various aspects of specific plays, reminding me that he seems more relevant with every passing day.

I hope there will be more   (5/5)

It is a great podcast. Intelligent that is what I really like about it. Issac Butler is knowledgeable about this subject. Very fascinating.

I hope there will be more   (5/5)

It is a great podcast. Intelligent that is what I really like about it. Issac Butler is knowledgeable about this subject. Very fascinating.

My favorite new podcast   (5/5)

Great casual listen episodes. Short summary of plots and some insight into interpretations and how that might relate to our current political climate. I really like the lines here and there that are acted out.

Cool!!   (5/5)

Very cool, very interesting so far!!!

Thoughtful and entertaining   (5/5)

For self care it’s difficult for me to listen to the news for extended periods of time right now. I like this podcast because it’s entertaining, keeps me engaged in political questions, but doesn’t fill me with dread and anxiety and anger. I actually feel uplifted and find comfort in thinking through the parallels between the current moment and Shakespeare’s plays.

Oh happy day   (5/5)

Thank you for this podcast. I love it. 🌹

What a brilliant, informed, thoughtful and personable podcaster   (5/5)

I love Shakespeare. I love politics. Ergo, i love this podcast! 👏

Interesting and relevant take on Shakespeare   (5/5)

What we have here is a show that looks at Shakespeare's plays through the lens of modern politics. Yet it also looks at the plays through the lens of politics during Shakespeare's times. This is a really interesting take on the bard's work. But what if you don't knoow his plays that well? That's okay, I listened to their episode on Richard II having never read nor watched the play, and I didn't feel lost. They have excerpts to provide context when it's needed.

Exceptionally well done!   (5/5)

Anyone interested in Shalespeare will love this in depth analysis that makes his plays relevant. If not interested in Shakespeare you will become in treated—and a fan.

Too chatty   (2/5)

I liked the first podcast but really found the second episode dull and not insightful.

So interesting!   (5/5)

There is a LOT of hard work put into this podcast. It is easy to listen to and full of great information. But I can tell it work done with love of Shakespeare and our country. I can't wait to hear the next one! Maybe Taming of The Shrew and the #metoo movement??

Loving it so far!   (5/5)

I’m very excited for this podcast. So far, very accessible and on-point. Can’t wait to hear more!

Loved it   (5/5)

Julius Caesar episode was very interesting. Looking forward to rest of series.

You know who you are   (5/5)

You know who you are and you know you will love this! Informative, entertaining, intelligent. Timeless. Timely. Ugh. Listen and find the silver lining in our times.

Great start   (5/5)

The first episode was incredibly interesting, especially since I just worked through Roman Civ with my students.

Shakespeare Nerds Rejoice   (5/5)

This is a great podcast for nerdy Shakespeare lovers. I love hearing how people today are interpreting the works of Shakespeare. It’s fun if you’re a certain kind of nerd.

Smart, easy and thought provoking   (5/5)

The eloquent and articulate Isaac Butler does a phenomenal job taking a deep dive into shakespeare’s plays and making real world sense of their message. I can’t wait for the next one. Great brain food.

PLEASE extend the series!   (5/5)

I need more Shakespeare in my podcast feed!!

Real Shakespeare scholarship   (5/5)

This is a pretty incredible show. It takes a Shakespeare play, talks about its political themes, situates then in the politics of today and Shakespeare’s day, and includes performances of speeches as well as analysis of them. It’s the humanities at its bests, and it’s a high production narrative show! Slate is getting into some seriously heady territory!

jtberk   (5/5)

Exciting concept!