Woman's Hour: Daily Podcasts

BBC  |  Podcast , ±47 min episodes every day  | 
Woman's Hour brings you the big celebrity names and leading women in the news, with subjects ranging widely from politics to health, law, education, arts, parenting, relationships, work, fiction, food and fashion. Presented by Jenni Murray and Jane Garvey. Find out more at www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/womanshour

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Somaliland’s first midwife, first Foreign Minister and former First Lady, Edna Adan Ismail tells us what galvanised her campaign to end the practice of FGM and why now in her 80s she still works at the hospital she helped to build in her homeland.

We discuss the rise and fall of the bonkbuster with the author Lauren Milne Henderson, Maisie Lawrence editor at Bookouture and Sareeta Domingo editor at Mills and Boon.

The Composer Errollyn Wallen’s work stretches back four decades, she tells us about her latest work with the BBC Proms. A new orchestral work titled This Frame is Part of the Painting.

We talk about the impact of The Country Girls by the Irish author Edna O’Brien. It was banned by the Irish Censorship Board and burned publically in her hometown when it was first published. We hear from Lin Coghlan who has adapted it for radio and from the literary critic Alex Clark.

How should you talk about the subject of race and racism to your children? Behavioural Scientist Dr Pragya Agarwal and blogger Freddie Harrel tell us about their personal experiences.

We discuss the latest show from Zoo Nation Youth Tales of the Turntables with dancer Portia Oti and Director and Choreographer Carrie-Anne Ingrouille.

Presented by Jenni Murray
Producer: Rabeka Nurmahomed
Editor: Lucinda Montefiore

Edna O'Brien's The Country Girls and Rohingya women refugees

The Country Girls by the Irish author Edna O’ Brien was banned by the Irish Censorship Board and burn publically in her hometown when it was first published in the 1960’s. This story of female friendship and the restrictions of rural Irish life for women became a best seller and the first of a trilogy now recognised as an iconic work of twentieth century Irish fiction. BBC Radio 4 is dramatizing all three books and Jenni speaks to Lin Coghlan who has adapted it for radio and the literary critic Alex Clark about the impact of the trilogy and why the description of female friendship and female experience feels contemporary even 50 years after the books were published.

For the last two years hundreds of thousands of men, women and children have left their homes in Myanmar and made a perilous journey to refugee camps in Bangladesh. They’re Rohingya Muslims. They have their own language and culture but the government of Myanmar, a Buddhist country, refuses to recognize them. The first exodus began two years ago when Rohingya villages where burned down and civilians, including children under 5, were attacked and killed. But even though some of them have made it to refugee camps in southeast Bangladesh, it can still be risky, especially for teenage girls. Karen Reidy is from UNICEF and joins us from Cox’s Bazaar, the world’s largest refugee camp.

Stories of lives changed by youth work in our series “Off The Rails”. We’re talking to young people in danger of getting into trouble and to those who help them back from the brink. Nequela, who is now a senior youth worker sees her teenage self in the young people she works with. Jo Morris joined her as she talked with teenager Shenique who has been working with ‘Nix’, as she calls Nequela, after repeatedly getting into fights.

Zoo Nation dance company are celebrated for their narrative hip hop dance productions. Their younger company Zoo Nation Youth now has a new show, Tales of the Turntable, which features some of the best young dancers and looks at the early origins of hip-hop, funk and soul, disco, house and rap. Jenni is joined by director and choreographer Carrie-Anne Ingrouille and by dancer Portia Oti.

Presenter: Jenni Murray
Producer: Helen Fitzhenry

Award-winning author and former Children's Laureate Malorie Blackman

Award-winning author and former Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman discusses Crossfire, the new novel in her Noughts and Crosses series, which will also be a BBC TV series starring Stormzy.

A family must prove whose parent died first in an extraordinary inheritance battle. That was the situation at the high court this week, which resolved a dispute between two sparring stepsisters. But it is also the plot of Dorothy L Sayer’s much-loved novel The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club. So how did the Mistress of Crime come to predict today’s court battles nearly a century ago? We ask Seona Ford, Chair of the Dorothy L Sayers Society and author, Jill Paton Walsh.

Composer Errollyn Wallen’s work stretches back four decades and includes 17 operas, numerous orchestral, choral and chamber works, concertos, as well as award-winning scores for visual media. You might remember her music being featured in the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games. She was made an MBE for her services to music in 2007 and has also received an Ivor Novello Award. She was the first black woman to have her work performed at the BBC Proms back in 1998 – and this year she has been specially commissioned by them to write a new orchestral work. It’s titled This Frame is Part of the Painting and it will be performed by Elim Chan, Catriona Morison, and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales on Thursday 15th August.

Presenter: Jenni Murray
Producer: Kirsty Starkey

Interviewed Guest: Malorie Blackman
Interviewed Guest: Professor Lisa Avalos
Interviewed Guest: Seona Ford
Interviewed Guest: Jill Paton Walsh
Interviewed Guest: Errollyn Wallen

Edna Adan Ismail, Smear Tests Over 50

Edna Adan Ismail has spent her life improving women's health in Africa, campaigning to end FGM and becoming Somaliland’s first midwife. She was also its first Foreign Minister and is a former First Lady. She was the daughter of a doctor in Somaliland at a time when educating women was frowned upon. She saw for herself how poor health care, lack of education and superstition had a devastating effect, especially on women. At eight years old she herself went through FGM and it was supported by all the women in her family. That set her on a path to oppose it. Now in her 80s, she still works at the hospital she helped to build after retiring from the World Health Organisation. Her story: A Woman of Firsts was recently serialised for BBC Radio 4 and is available on the BBC Sounds App.

Talking to your kids about race, HRT shortages, and the demise of the bonkbuster novel

Talking to your kids about race.

The UK is currently facing a shortage of hormone replacement therapy (HRT). What should you do if your normal supply of HRT tablets, skin patches or gels is unavailable? We hear from GP & menopause specialist Dr Hannah Short.

Plus Jane Garvey visits Kitty's Launderette in Anfield which provides much needed washing facilities in one of Liverpool's most deprived areas.

And we ask; Why have so called "bonkbuster" novels fallen out of favour with women - and look at what's taken their place.

Presenter Jane Garvey
Producer Beverley Purcell

Guest; Freddie Harrel
Guest; Dr Pragya Agarwal
Guest; Lauren Milne Henderson
Guest; Maisie Lawrence
Guest; Sareeta Domingo


Today’s programme is dedicated to the challenges and joys of the long summer weeks out of school. Is boredom good? Will children fall behind on their learning? How can you be sure your teenagers are safe while you’re at work? Jane also hears about the impact of holiday food poverty on children with parents on low incomes. Plus minimalist camping tips to get children off their screens and outside.
Jane is joined by:
Juliet Benis, Primary Head Teacher
Carmel McConnell MBE, Founder of Magic Breakfast
Dr Laura Harrison, Senior Lecturer in Modern History at the University of West England
Briony Hartley author of Minimalist Family Camping:
Dee Holmes young persons, family and children’s Counsellor for Relate

Presenter: Jane Garvey
Producer: Caroline Donne

Director and actor Kathy Burke on her new series of documentaries: All Woman

Director, actor Kathy Burke on her new series of documentaries for Channel 4 “All Woman” which are about appearance, motherhood, marriage and relationships.

We’ll be talking about women’s finances and the changes to income when women have a family.

There's music from the Scottish songwriter Karine Polwart. Dr Amy Kavanagh a disability campaigner tells us about her experiences of harassment in public spaces.

Plus a look at how to use the last few weeks of the holidays to prepare children for primary school and the wrestler Heather Bandenburg also known as La Rana Venenosa on why she thinks women’s wrestling is a feminist act.

Presented by Jane Garvey
Producer: Rabeka Nurmahomed
Editor: Beverley Purcell

Guest; Sarah Pennells
Guest; Lucy Tobin
Guest; Fran Bennett
Guest; Helen Stroudley
Guest; Vibha Ghei

Kathy Burke, Menopause, Kajal Odedra

Kathy Burke: actor, comedian, theatre director and for many people, a national treasure. She's got a new TV series starting next week which explores what it means to be a woman today. It looks at attitudes to beauty, motherhood and relationships. So what's she learnt from the experience?

There's been a lot of publicity this week around a surgical procedure designed to delay the menopause by 20 years. Today we discuss whether the menopause really needs fixing. To talk about it, we have Dr. Melanie Davies who's a Consultant Gynaecologist and Obstetrician; Emma Hartley who's a journalist who's written about the procedure recently, and Allison Pearson who's written a novel about the menopause called How Hard Can It Be?

If you're passionate about making a change, how do you persuade others to follow you? What do you have to do to create a winning campaign and why are some of the most successful ones started by young women? We hear from Kajal Odedra, author of ‘Do Something: Activism For Everyone? We also speak to Bella Lack, who's a 16 year old environmental campaigner.

Money - why women need to talk about money

Woman’s Hour talks about money. Over their lives, women earn less and save less than men – and, very often, find they need more of it. Research consistently suggests that women are less likely to talk about personal finances or to seek financial advice, but far more likely to worry about it than men. We look at how we manage our relationship with money and, at what our relationships can do to our cash-flow. And, we ask what part the government, work places and financial intuitions can play in building our financial resilience and reducing gender inequality. From student debt to pensions; buying a home to saving for a pension; the costs of paying for care or doing the caring – and, the gender pay gap - we examine where things go wrong and, how we might begin to fix them.

Presenter: Jenni Murray
Producer: Ruth Watts
Interviewed guest: Fran Bennett
Interviewed guest: Amy Cashman
Interviewed guest: Jude Kelly
Interviewed guest: Sarah Pennells
Interviewed guest: Lucy Tobin

Remembering Toni Morrison

We remember the woman considered the greatest American writer of the twentieth century – the Nobel Prize winner, Toni Morrison, who died on Monday.

The number of crimes being reported to the police involving children attacking their parents has doubled in the last three years from around 7,000 to 14,000 incidents. That’s according to data obtained by BBC Yorkshire following Freedom of Information requests. The BBC has been given exclusive access to the ‘Getting On’ course in Doncaster. It’s one of just a handful of similar courses across the country, designed to help parents and children find a solution to this type of abuse.

Former Blue Peter presenter, actress and author Janet Ellis joins Jenni to discuss her new novel 'How It Was', the follow-up to her acclaimed debut, The Butcher’s Hook. It looks at the generational divides between mothers and daughters, and deals with difficult topics such as parental bereavement, miscarriage and inappropriate underage relationships.

Scottish songwriter and musician, Karine Polwart is known for her politically charged folk songs. In her new album she gives a folk twist to the Scottish pop hits of her childhood and plays her interpretation of Deacon Blue’s ‘Dignity’ live in the studio.

Presenter: Jenni Murray
Producer: Kirsty Starkey

Interviewed Guest: Emma Glasbey
Interviewed Guest: Janet Ellis
Interviewed Guest: Karine Polwart

The Yardley Girls, Harassment of disabled women in public spaces

Disability campaigner Dr Amy Kavanagh describes how she experienced harassment in public spaces when she started to use a white cane. Now she has started a project with Dr Hannah Mason-Bish, Director of Centre for Gender Studies at Sussex University to tackle the issue and the intrusions that she and many others face.

‘Beauty is your duty’ was an official propaganda campaign during WWII and the wearing of bright red lipstick seemed to be a patriotic duty and flash of glamour during tough times. While many factories and workers were commandeered for the war effort, the production of lipstick at Yardley’s cosmetics factory in East London continued apace. Kate Thompson’s latest book Secrets of the Homefront Girls features the lives and hardships of the women working in these factories. She joins Jane with two of the original Yardley Girls – Ann and Eileen.

What is breast milk donation and why are some people calling for it to be better funded? Jane talks to author Francesca Segal whose premature twins needed donated breast milk, about why the experience made her want to donate her own breast milk to repay the favour when her next child was born. Plus Dr Natalie Shenker, co-founder of Hearts Milk Bank, the UK’s first independent, non-profit human milk bank talks about the process and problems faced when dealing with donated milk.

Wrestler Heather Bandenburg aka La Rana Venenosa – Queen of the Sewer describes wrestling as her main vehicle of feminist resistance. She joins Jane to talk about its growing appeal and why she thinks more women should take it up. Her new book is "The Unladlylike: A Grrls Guide to Wrestling"

Presenter: Jane Garvey
Producer: Caroline Donne

Interviewed guest: Dr. Amy Kavanagh
Interviewed guest: Dr. Hannah Mason-Bier
Interviewed guest: Kate Thompson
Interviewed guest: Francesca Segal
Interviewed guest: Dr. Natalie Shenker
Interviewed guest: Heather Bandenburg

28 episodes

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