When searching for female-led podcasts, the list of shows about fashion, parenting, pop culture, health and wellness seem endless. Run a similar search for women-run political podcasts, however, and very few pop up.
While studies show that women are less interested in politics than men, this may change as more women run for public office, and gender equality is championed by industry, government, media and society.
That being said, here is a list of political podcasts that are hosted by women looking to close the gender gap and encourage female participation and interest in politics.
If you’re keen to learn how successful women in the worlds of business and politics made it to the top, the Women Rule podcast by Politico is exactly the one to tune into. Hosted by political correspondent Anna Palmer, co-author of Politico Playbook and The Hill to Die On: The Battle for Congress and the Future of Trump’s America, this weekly show features interviews with kick-ass women leaders who share their personal stories and offer plenty of advice, tips and inspiring words for women looking to lead.
One of its recent shows, ‘I have a voice and I need to try to use it‘ features an interview with Kathryn Murdoch, a member of the Murdoch family who own the News Corp media empire (her father-in-law is Rupert Murdoch) and is often blamed for the political polarisation of the climate change discussion and fanning the flames of populism. In this show, the self-described ‘radical centrist’ emerges from the shadow of her prominent conservative family to speak with Anna Palmer about how Al Gore sparked her interest in climate action, why she’s pledging $100 million to tackle climate change and which of the Democrats she’s backing in this year’s US presidential election.
“I would say that I’ve always had a very respectful relationship with everyone in the family,” she shares on the podcast. “I’ve had very frank and factual conversations about all of these types of things for many, many years. Nothing has changed; our views two days ago are exactly the same as they were when I first started to learn about climate change 14 years ago.”
One of the most popular female-run political podcast shows hosted by two American women who often hold different points of view and opposing political beliefs (one identifies as a liberal and the other conservative) – but manage to discuss politics graciously because they refuse to see each other as enemies.
Through their podcast Pantsuit Politics, Beth Silvers and Sarah Stewart Holland have open and honest conversations about politics, democracy and current events – whilst maintaining respect for one another, despite clashing opinions and political ideologies. They empower listeners to stay engaged in political news without giving in to the toxic nature of modern political discourse.
Podcast shows are published at least two to three times a week and cover the latest in American politics, from the ins and outs of abortion laws, Trump’s impeachment right through to the recent New Hampshire primary.
Produced and hosted by Christen Smith, an associate professor of African and African Diaspora Studies and Anthropology at the University of Texas, Cite Black Women Podcast is a bi-weekly podcast show that encourages black women to speak up and share their ideas and opinions with the world. Featuring interviews with accomplished professors and black feminist scholars such as Dr. Keisha-Khan Perry and Dr. Daina Ramey Berry.
Episodes cover a range of topics, from citational politics and black women’s knowledge, black women’s erasure, slavery and commodification through to anti-imperialism. To learn more about the intellectual contributions of black women in feminism, radical politics and history, this is the podcast to subscribe and listen to.
The NuVoices podcast is produced by Chinese independent digital media company SupChina with a base in Beijing and Brooklyn and is hosted by Alice Xin Liu and Joanna Chiu, two women who share a passion for international and domestic politics. They interview prominent women from academia, media and the arts and cover a range of topics from sexual harassment, feminism, queer culture, abuse of power and human rights.
Political discussions can often be fraught with criminal repercussions given China’s censorship laws, which is what makes this women-hosted podcast that much more intriguing. One of their recent podcasts cover Hong Kong’s political communities, the extradition bill and diverging opinions about the protests. So if you want to go beyond the headlines to understand the real China from women who situated there, you can’t go past this podcast.
The podcast PMS: Politically Motivated Spiels describes itself as a guide to US politics for ‘dummies’. Hosted by Olivia, Erin and Abigail a.k.a. ‘The Spiel Gals’ the podcast is their attempt to learn, discuss and share their knowledge about the American political system.
This show is fairly new, debuting its first episode just last month on January 27 but given the ‘explicit’ warnings on Spotify, the brazen use of puns and the jokes shared amongst the girls in its first three episodes (that’s all that was released at the time of writing), the political conversations are sure to be brutally honest – and unlike anything you think a political podcast should sound like!
In the first episode, one of the hosts admits that she Googled “How to not look stupid while talking about politics” while the other two conducted basic research on their way to the apartment to record the first podcast. Theirs is an approach to political podcasting that is refreshing since the girls openly admit to not knowing anything about many of the political terms and topics they hope to discuss, but the aim is to figure it all out and remind listeners that they too aren’t “stupid for not knowing”. The aim to break it all down so that hosts and listeners alike don’t ever feel the need to ‘nod along’ in political discussions and feel more confident to take part in political conversations.
Hosting the Guardian’s Australia Politics Live podcast is Australian political editor Katharine Murphy, an experienced reporter who worked in Canberra’s parliamentary gallery for 15 years. The weekly podcast podcast is supported by Guardian Australia’s crack team of political correspondents and examines the latest Australian political news, from the country’s decade of climate inaction, Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s tumultous first year in office and whether Australia is really heading towards a recession.
Society may not be accustomed to matter having women take charge in political news and discourse, but these female-led political podcasts prove that the tide is turning, gender barriers are finally breaking down and more women are interested in, and happy to publicly discuss, politics.
Know of any other women-led political podcast that you think should be included in this list? Please leave details in the comments so we can check them out!
Dislike the gendered abuse and trollish nature of political discussions on Twitter and other social platforms? Keen to join a group of women/womxn from across the globe who are also interested in learning and sharing opinions about politics, policy and political candidates without the hate and bullying? You’ll love our ‘Women Who Love Politics’ group. Join here.
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Feature image via CoWomen.