The Documentary Podcast

300 EpisodesProduced by BBC World Service

Download the latest documentaries Investigating global developments, issues and affairs.

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Restoring Brazil's National Treasure

April 18th, 2019

26:28

Brazilians wept when their 200-year-old National Museum went up in flames last September. Twenty million items, many of them irreplaceable, were …

Snooker: Young, cool and Chinese

April 16th, 2019

26:07

Once a game associated with the backrooms of British pubs, snooker is now a global sport, with most of its growth coming from China. Seven-time world snooker champion Stephen Hendry presents this exploration into how …

Mumbai Mirror

April 14th, 2019

50:29

As the 2019 Indian election campaign kicks off, BBC World Service follows journalists from the daily Mumbai Mirror newspaper to get under the skin of …

New York City’s pirates of the air

April 13th, 2019

50:42

As the workday winds down across New York, you can tune in to a clandestine world of unlicensed radio stations; a cacophonous sonic wonder of the city. As listeners begin to arrive home, dozens of secret transmitters …

Order! Order!

April 13th, 2019

27:27

The BBC’s parliamentary correspondent Mark D’Arcy reviews the bizarre twists and turns of the extraordinary and chaotic past few weeks of debates and voting on Brexit in the British Parliament, from the record-breaking …

Poland's partisan ghosts

April 11th, 2019

26:35

For some in Poland the Cursed Soldiers are national heroes; for others they are murderers. A march in celebration of a group of Polish partisans …

India's forbidden love

April 9th, 2019

27:27

At a time when religious extremism and honour killings have been dominating the political and social discourse, we take a look at the issues …

Will AI kill development?

April 6th, 2019

50:35

Ian Goldin asks if robotisation will prevent poorer countries taking the traditional route to prosperity. Since World War Two, nation after nation …

Nepal Fights Foreign Paedophiles

April 4th, 2019

26:52

Hunting western paedophiles is a priority for a new police unit tasked with safeguarding children in Nepal.

Mired in poverty and still recovering …

Will China and America go to war?

April 3rd, 2019

27:32

Will the growing competition between China and the United States inevitably lead to military conflict?

One leading American academic created huge attention when in 2017 when he posed the idea of what he called a …

Not #MeToo, I'm French

April 2nd, 2019

27:27

In 2016 when #MeToo spread around the world, thousands of women followed in France using the hashtag #balancetonporc (expose your pig). Some …

Unrest in Ukraine’s Little Hungary

March 28th, 2019

26:43

Eastern Ukraine has been under assault from Russian backed rebel forces for the past five years, but few have heard of a smaller conflict, which …

The Romanian Wave

March 27th, 2019

26:59

Romanians are the second largest foreign nationality in the UK. Why did they come and will they stay? One politician famously once said he "would not …

Where are you going? - London

March 26th, 2019

26:53

Catherine Carr talks to people on the move in London. From the American who left her young children on the other side of the Atlantic, and the Russian buying Soviet propaganda posters at a tube station, to a ‘born and …

RoboLife

March 24th, 2019

50:42

Mariko Oi has young children starting school in Singapore, where robots are increasingly being used in education, and ageing parents back in her home …

The crypto factor: the winners and losers in virtual investment

March 21st, 2019

26:28

You can't take money with you when you die.... or can you? In this episode of Assignment the stranger than fiction story that's the latest cryptocurrency scandal to leave tens of thousands of people out of pocket. The …

India and how it sees Britain

March 20th, 2019

27:35

Neil MacGregor visits different countries to talk to leading political, business and cultural figures to find out how they, as individuals and as …

Where are you going? - Belfast

March 19th, 2019

27:32

One question – Where are you going? – reveals hidden truths about the lives of strangers around the world. In this new series, with Brexit fast approaching, Catherine Carr talks to people on the move in Cardiff. Are the …

Can you murder a robot?

March 17th, 2019

50:40

A couple of years ago a cute little robot was sent out to hitchhike, to prove how well humans and robots could get on. It was an exercise in trust, …

Abandoned in the Amazon

March 14th, 2019

26:43

When a light aircraft carrying two families from local Indian tribes disappeared over the Amazon recently, relatives scoured the rainforest for weeks, until hunger and illness forced them to give up. Why did the …

Canada and how it sees Britain

March 13th, 2019

27:43

Neil MacGregor visits different countries to talk to leading political, business and cultural figures to find out how they, as individuals and as …

Where are you going? - Cardiff

March 12th, 2019

27:42

Cardiff in early February is freezing cold but the people have a warm welcome. Catherine Carr meets strangers in the city of Cardiff to find out what …

The Slumlords of Nairobi

March 10th, 2019

50:47

In Nairobi’s slums, more than 90% of residents rent a shack from a slum landlord. These so-called slumlords have a less than shining reputation in …

The Church of Denmark abuse scandal

March 7th, 2019

26:47

How did a priest of the Church of Denmark manage to sexually abuse children for a decade without being detected? Gry Hoffmann investigates the case of Dan Peschack, who is now serving a 10-year prison sentence for the …

Nigeria and how it sees Britain

March 6th, 2019

27:48

Neil MacGregor visits different countries to talk to leading political, business and cultural figures to find out how they, as individuals and as …

Where Are You Going? - Glasgow

March 5th, 2019

27:43

With Brexit fast approaching, Catherine Carr talks to people on the move in Glasgow, Cardiff, Belfast and London. Are the people she meets downcast, …

We Intend to Cause Havoc

March 2nd, 2019

48:26

In the wake of independence an explosive music scene gripped the southern African country of Zambia. Mixing western rock 'n' roll with traditional …

Empty Spain and the Caravans of Love

February 28th, 2019

27:15

How does a lonely, Spanish shepherd find love when single women have left for the city? Antonio Cerrada lives north of Madrid, in the heart of what’s …

Egypt and how it sees Britain

February 27th, 2019

27:47

Neil MacGregor visits different countries to talk to leading political, business and cultural figures to find out how they, as individuals and as …

Hearing me

February 26th, 2019

27:47

(This programme contains audio effects that may cause discomfort to people living with hearing conditions. There is a modified version of this programme, with quieter effects, on this page https://bbc.in/2TrInga)

What …

The Miracle of St Anthony's

February 24th, 2019

50:16

In the late 1960s, parole officer Bob Hurley became basketball coach at St Anthony’s High School in Jersey City, New Jersey. In the years that …

Malawi: Life After Death Row

February 21st, 2019

26:54

Byson expected to be dead long ago. Now in his sixties, he was given a death sentence quarter of a century ago. But instead of being executed, he’s …

As the World Sees Britain: Germany and how it sees Britain

February 20th, 2019

27:02

Neil MacGregor visits different countries to talk to leading political, business and cultural figures to find out how they, as individuals and as …

George Weah: The footballing president

February 19th, 2019

27:01

George Weah, former World Footballer of the Year and star of AC Milan, Chelsea and Monaco, was elected president of Liberia in a landslide victory just over a year ago. Having been raised in one of Liberia’s worst …

Can we fix it? The inside story of match fixing in tennis

February 14th, 2019

26:55

Last month, law enforcement officials in Spain said they had broken up a major match fixing ring in tennis. The Guardia Civil said 28 players competing at the lower levels of tennis were implicated. It's alleged that a …

The Trumped Republicans

February 13th, 2019

27:11

Republican insider Ron Christie discovers how Donald Trump's presidency is changing his party. Trump arrived in the White House offering a populist …

So where are the aliens?

February 12th, 2019

27:27

Vulcans, Daleks, Martians, Grays - our culture is pervaded by alien beings from distant worlds – some benevolent…most not so much. In our galaxy …

The Ballads of Emmett Till

February 10th, 2019

1:08:38

**Some listeners may find parts of this programme upsetting** Emmett Till, fourteen and black, was put on the train from Chicago by his mother Mamie in August 1955. She got his corpse back, mutilated and stinking. …

The Pledge

February 7th, 2019

26:29

On college campuses across the United States, students die every year as a result of “hazing” - sometimes violent and dangerous rituals designed to …

My Brexit Dilemma

February 6th, 2019

28:04

Adrian Goldberg is a BBC reporter. His father was German and came to the UK on Kindertransport just before the start of the Second World War. For …

Sweeping the World

February 5th, 2019

28:02

In Sweeping the World, award-winning poet, Imtiaz Dharker presents a reflective evocation in words, sound and music of the broom in many cultures. …

The Politics of Mongolian Hip Hop

February 2nd, 2019

49:04

MC Dizraeli hears how Mongolia’s massive hip hop scene is shaping the country’s future. He finds surprising lyrics that dispense moral advice, worry …

Japan's Elderly Crime Wave

January 31st, 2019

27:00

Elderly pensioners in Japan are committing petty crimes so that they can be sent to prison. One in five of all prisoners in Japan are now over 65. …

Solving Alzheimer's: Living and Dying with Alzheimer's

January 29th, 2019

27:41

In the Netherlands, people with dementia can legally chose euthanasia but the debate is going back and forth there. When can dementia patients consent to euthanasia? The answer it turns out - is ethically very …

Songs from the Depths of Hell

January 27th, 2019

50:52

Aleksander Kulisiewicz spent six years in Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp, imprisoned soon after the Nazi invasion and their attempted destruction …

Closing Uganda’s Orphanage

January 24th, 2019

26:29

Uganda is a country that has seen massive growth in the number of ‘orphanages’ providing homes to children, despite the number of orphans there decreasing.

It is believed 80% of children now living in orphanages have at …

Solving Alzheimer's: The Trillion Dollar Disease

January 22nd, 2019

27:57

Dementia is now a trillion-dollar disease, and with the numbers of patients doubling every 20 years, the burden will fall unevenly on developing …

The Assassination - Part Two

January 20th, 2019

50:45

It is one of the world's great unsolved murders. Ten years ago, Pakistan's most prominent politician, a woman people would form human chains to …

France, Algeria and the battle for truth

January 17th, 2019

26:37

President Emmanuel Macron has recently done something unusual for a French President – he made a declaration recognising that torture was used by the French military during the Algerian War of Independence.

He described …

Africa’s Drone Experiment

January 16th, 2019

27:42

While the idea of retail giants like Amazon dropping parcels from the sky via drone may be a long way off, in East Africa momentum is building over the idea of drone delivery in hard to reach places. In the island of …

Solving Alzheimer's: Fear and Stigma

January 15th, 2019

27:49

Few of us will escape the impact of Alzheimer’s Disease. The grim pay-back from being healthy, wealthy or lucky enough to live into our late 80s and beyond is dementia. One in three - maybe even one in two of us - will …

The Assassination - Part One

January 13th, 2019

50:49

Ten years ago, Benazir Bhutto, a woman people would form human chains to protect from assassins, died in a suicide blast. The intervening years have …

Balkan Border Wars - Serbia and Kosovo

January 10th, 2019

27:41

Old enemies Serbia and Kosovo discuss what for some is unthinkable - an ethnic land swap. This dramatic proposal is one of those being talked about as a means of normalising relations between these former foes. Since …

Cuban Voices

January 8th, 2019

27:44

Ordinary Cubans reveal what their lives have really been like under Castro’s socialism and, more recently, its transformation into a more …

From the Ground Up

January 5th, 2019

49:33

The Central African Republic is one of the least developed countries on earth. Years of conflict have left hundreds of thousands of people displaced. …

The Brazilian Footballer Who Never Was

January 3rd, 2019

26:45

At 12, Douglas Braga arrived in Rio de Janeiro, a wide-eyed boy, ready to live out the Brazilian dream and become a professional footballer. At 18, he was signed by one of the country’s top teams - but was also starting …

New York's Flower Market: Things my Father Loved

January 1st, 2019

27:46

New York’s historic 28th Street flower market opens early. The sidewalk is a rush of colour by 5am, packed with cheerful yellow sunflowers, frothy …

Childish Gambino: This is 2018

December 30th, 2018

50:43

In May 2018 the American actor and singer Donald Glover (aka Childish Gambino) released what has been described as “the most talked about music video in recent history”. The controversial video of This is America …

Armenia: Return to a Town that Died

December 27th, 2018

26:57

Thirty years on from the 1988 earthquake in Armenia, what’s happened to the devastated town of Spitak? Rescuers from all over the world came to help search for survivors – among them a team of British firefighters. Now, …

Christmas with Melania

December 25th, 2018

24:22

Melania Trump is the second foreign-born First Lady and Donald Trump’s third wife; an ex-model, 24 years his junior, who once posed pregnant in a …

Carols of the Times

December 23rd, 2018

49:37

From the age of eight, Bob Chilcott sang with the world renowned King's College Choir in Cambridge. Every Christmas Eve the choir gather in the …

DNA, Me and the Family Tree

December 20th, 2018

26:42

Where do you come from? Tracing your ancestry in the USA is one of the most popular hobbies along with gardening and golf. TV is awash with …

Spy Ship: The Capture of the USS Pueblo

December 18th, 2018

27:21

It was a brazen and violent attack by North Korean forces on an American ship sailing in international waters, leading to the death of one sailor and …

Congo: A River Journey

December 15th, 2018

49:57

A journey in sound along the mighty Congo River in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This adventure transports you to the heart of the country on the eve of long-delayed elections. You’ll encounter busy ports, vibrant …

China's Hidden Camps

December 13th, 2018

26:58

China is accused of locking up as many as a million Uighur Muslims without trial across its western region of Xinjiang. The government denies the …

Stories on the Rocks

December 12th, 2018

27:14

Somaliland’s rich archaeological heritage was practically unknown 15 years ago. Now thanks to Dr. Sada Mire, Somali archaeologist and author, …

When You Tire of Tech

December 11th, 2018

27:07

Our lives are consumed more and more by the online world whether it be for entertainment or every day activities. For some people it becomes too much – and here, musician turned broadcaster Ana Matronic meets some young …

India's battle with online porn

December 9th, 2018

50:16

Access to pornography though mobile phones has been sudden and widespread in India: some say way too sudden for a conservative society, and blame …

Inside Burundi’s Killing Machine

December 6th, 2018

27:00

An investigation into the 'killing machine' of one of Africa's most repressive and secretive countries. Three years ago there was widespread unrest in the East African country of Burundi when the country’s president ran …

Vicky Phelan: The Woman who Changed Ireland

December 5th, 2018

27:14

This is the story of Vicky Phelan, a mother of two from Limerick, Ireland. Vicky has cancer of the cervix and in 2017 she was given just six months to live. As she battled to save her own life, Vicky uncovered a scandal …

Radio La Colifata

December 5th, 2018

27:14

How is a radio station in an Argentinian psychiatric hospital changing the way people view mental illness? Radio La Colifata - slang for loon, or …

A Stark Choice for Cambodia's Surrogates

November 29th, 2018

26:57

In a Cambodian hospital, a group of terrified new mothers nurse tiny babies under the watch of police guards. They're surrogates, desperately poor …

Migrants Mean Business

November 28th, 2018

27:39

Kim Tserkezie explores how migrants have used their entrepreneurial skills to become part of British communities, and finds out whether the …

The Surrogates Club

November 27th, 2018

27:38

In Canada many women volunteer to give birth to a stranger's child and do not get paid in return. Under Canadian laws, gestational surrogates receive …

Reporting Women

November 25th, 2018

49:57

Women make up roughly 50% of the world but is the media reporting the issues that matter to them? Do women want to hear more debate around taboo …

The Carnival: 50 Years in St Pauls

November 24th, 2018

50:24

Narrated by Bristol’s first poet laureate Miles Chambers, from costumes to sound systems this tale looks at the history of the St Pauls Carnival, …

Nigeria's Patient 'Prisoners'

November 22nd, 2018

27:16

Nigerian patients held in hospital because they can’t pay their medical bills.

In March 2016, a young woman went into labour. She was rushed to a local, private hospital in south-east Nigeria where she gave birth by …

The Number One Ladies’ Landmine Agency

November 21st, 2018

27:12

We follow a unique group of Sahrawi women working alongside the world’s longest minefield, the 2,700km sand wall or berm built by Morocco across the …

Argentina’s Feminist Tango

November 20th, 2018

27:14

Argentina is on the brink of a female-led revolution, and in Buenos Aires women are fighting for an equal footing everywhere from the institutions of …

The Eternal Life of the Instant Noodle

November 18th, 2018

50:27

What is the most traded legal item in US prisons? Instant Noodles. Celia Hatton explores the story behind instant noodles. It's a journey that starts in Japan, at the nation's instant noodle museum, and then takes her …

Everyday Americans 1: The Opioid ‘Demon’

November 16th, 2018

51:35

The opioid epidemic in America is hurting all levels of society – in this three part documentary series we explore its impact, in real-time, on people in one city, Louisville, Kentucky. We work with a team of reporters …

Everyday Americans 2: Law and Order and Opioids

November 16th, 2018

49:10

Exploring how the opioid epidemic in America is impacting the criminal justice system. Through reporters on the Louisville Courier Journal we meet the drug court judge who tells us about her hopes for those going …

Everyday Americans 3: Opioids and the Next Generation

November 16th, 2018

1:06:51

In Louisville, Kentucky, drug overdose related deaths are twice the national average. What will the impact be on the next generation? This fly-on …

The Last Long Journey of the Herero

November 14th, 2018

27:17

In 1904 the Herero people of South West Africa made their final stand against German Colonial troops with their backs against the slopes of Waterberg …

From Truman to Trump

November 13th, 2018

26:54

The final interview with the veteran American politician Senator Joe Tydings, with his vivid memories of working with the Kennedy dynasty - and his …

Saudi's Crown Prince in the spotlight

November 8th, 2018

26:27

Saudi’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has come under intense scrutiny since the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, with many believing he may have been behind it. Mohammed bin Salman has condemned the act. But a …

George Ellery Hale: Prince of the Sun

November 7th, 2018

27:15

A celebration of the amazing work of the little known astronomer (the world’s first astrophysicist) George Ellery Hale. He covered the peak of Mount Wilson with a constellation of instruments for observing the sky. His …

The Unknown Soldier

November 6th, 2018

26:42

Moira Stuart tells the astonishing story of the idea of the Unknown Soldier - a powerful prism for national grief, a brilliant interplay between …

The Greyhound Diaries

November 3rd, 2018

50:23

Singer-songwriter Doug Levitt hears the stories of America’s struggling people as they ride across the country on long-haul coaches – and turns their …

West Africa’s Fish Famine

November 2nd, 2018

27:14

Overfishing is blighting traditional livelihoods along the coast of Senegal. Fish catches are collapsing there after years of overfishing, mainly by …

The Dark Sides of American Democracy

October 30th, 2018

27:03

Giles Edwards travels to North Carolina to investigate whether new voting laws and partisan district maps could swing November’s elections. Over the …

Young, Cool and Kazakhstani

October 27th, 2018

50:23

More than 25 years after independence, young Kazakhstanis are still trying to make sense of their dark history and their place in the new world …

Serbia’s Femicide Crisis

October 25th, 2018

26:28

Violence against women is a persistent problem in Serbia. The numbers aren’t clear, but in the last decade more than 330 women have been murdered by …

What Happened Last Night in Sweden?

October 24th, 2018

27:11

In February 2017, President Trump made a speech to his supporters. He moved on to the topic of immigration and Sweden. "You look at what's happening …

Africa's Big Philanthropy: Home-Grown

October 23rd, 2018

27:15

With the rise of a wealthy class of high net worth individuals in Africa, home-grown philanthropy is on the rise. We meet some of these rich givers to find out what motivates them. The concept of philanthropy among …

Singing for Survival in Cucuta

October 18th, 2018

27:04

Down but not out in a Colombian border town, four Venezuelans pin their hopes on music. Cucuta is a desperate place, overflowing with Venezuelans who …

Africa's Big Philanthropy: Agriculture and Food Security

October 16th, 2018

27:11

Around one in four people in sub-Saharan Africa is malnourished, and tackling food insecurity is a huge challenge. Alan Kasujja explores how big …

Paralympics – Gaming the System?

October 11th, 2018

26:46

Last year, Assignment investigated whether some athletes and coaches game the Paralympic classification system in order to win medals.

We heard allegations that some competitors had gone to astonishing lengths such as …

Africa's Big Philanthropy: Health

October 9th, 2018

27:03

In 2016 The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation pledged to invest five billion dollars in poverty reduction and health in Africa. Other big givers like …

After Suicide

October 6th, 2018

48:45

When someone takes their own life, how does it affect those left behind? Suicide claims the life of someone, somewhere in the world, approximately every 40 seconds, according to the World Health Organisation. And that …

Don't Shoot, I'm Disabled

October 4th, 2018

27:09

Hundreds of people are killed by the police in the US each year. Much of the media attention has been on the race of victims, but there is another …

A Life Alone

October 2nd, 2018

27:20

Christopher de Bellaigue presents an exploration of loneliness – told through a conversation with one woman – his 94 year old aunt, Diana. As she …

The Children of Belsen

September 30th, 2018

50:14

In April 1945 a 15-year-old Dutch Jewish girl, Hetty Werkendam, was interviewed by the BBC in the Nazi concentration camp of Bergen-Belsen shortly …

Zika Love Stories

September 29th, 2018

50:10

Three years ago, doctors in the north-east of Brazil noticed a worrying new trend - a spate of babies being born with abnormally small heads, or microcephaly. The cause was traced to an outbreak of the Zika virus …

Macedonia: What’s in a Name?

September 27th, 2018

29:33

The name ‘Macedonia’ is hotly disputed by two neighbouring nations. The Greek province of Macedonia and the country calling itself the Republic of Macedonia border Lake Prespa. The villagers on the lake’s shores share a …

Model X

September 25th, 2018

27:05

In Paris, aspiring models have to adjust to rather spartan conditions - from sharing a flat with strangers to moving around an unknown city all alone and surviving on a mere 80 euros a week. Despite their best efforts …

Generation Identity

September 20th, 2018

26:40

Simon Cox is in Austria where the authorities have launched an unprecedented operation against a new far right youth organisation, Generation Identity. They prosecuted members of the group including its leader, Martin …

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: National International

September 19th, 2018

27:00

Editor David Cannadine delves into stories about some of the colourful figures who lurk in the holdings of the Oxford Dictionary of National …

The Changing Face of Procreation: Assisted Reproduction

September 18th, 2018

27:13

How humans make babies could be about to change, thanks to advances in IVF and reproductive technology. Krupa Padhy meets the new kinds of families …

Iceland: What Happened Next?

September 16th, 2018

50:18

Iceland is a small island nation of just 340,000 people, but at the height of the global financial crisis in 2008, it was the scene of one of the …

Chile - Sexual Abuse, Secrets and Lies

September 13th, 2018

27:19

Dark secrets of Chile's Catholic Church - one of South America's devout congregations

The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: Lasting Fame

September 12th, 2018

27:29

Editor David Cannadine takes us behind the scenes at the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (ODNB) to examine why this late Victorian institution, with thousands upon thousands of detailed and vivid entries about …

The New World Of Reproduction

September 11th, 2018

27:28

Krupa Padhy examines where we have got to after 40 years of IVF. In England, she visits a family made up of white British parents and their three boys, plus a ‘snow baby’: created during an IVF cycle for her …

Nevada’s Brothels Face the Axe

September 6th, 2018

27:27

In parts of Nevada, prostitution is legal - the only such state in the US. The 'live and let live' mentality is a hangover from the gold rush days; …

Conflict Comedy

September 4th, 2018

27:22

How has comedy helped Northern Ireland cope with conflict and move on?

-- An atheist is driving in Belfast and he gets stopped by a paramilitary road …

Uganda's Prison Farms

September 3rd, 2018

27:33

'He was using prisoners like oxen for ploughing for his own gain'. An ex-convict in Uganda recalls the prison officer in charge of the prison farm he worked on. Uganda has one of the most overcrowded prison systems in …

The Life and Times of Senator John McCain

August 28th, 2018

26:32

Few American politicians have carved such a distinctive career as the late John McCain, the Republican Senator for Arizona. Anthony Zurcher, the …

Besieged

August 28th, 2018

27:02

Over the last seven years as many as a million people in Syria lived under siege, 400,000 of them in Eastern Ghouta alone. Some were trapped for more than four years of bombardment, sniping and near starvation. The …

The Benefits of Nakedness

August 26th, 2018

50:31

Some people just love to be naked in public. Dr Keon West travels far and wide to speak to those who enjoy taking their clothes off to find out why they do it, and what the benefits – and disadvantages – might be. His …

'Gone to Foreign' from Jamaica

August 23rd, 2018

27:17

When someone in Jamaica emigrates to the UK, it is said they have 'gone to foreign'. Over the past 70 years several hundred thousand Jamaicans have …

Leonard Bernstein and Me

August 21st, 2018

27:21

Composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein is perhaps the most influential American musician of all time. A champion of cultural inclusivity, he tore …

Not Making Babies in South Korea

August 16th, 2018

26:31

Why does South Korea have the lowest fertility rate in the world? The average South Korean woman is expected to have 1.05 children in her life - …

Where are You Going? Seoul

August 14th, 2018

30:39

Catherine Carr travels to the South Korean city of Seoul and invites passers-by to stop for a moment and answer one question - Where are you going? …

Mo Salah: Football is Life

August 12th, 2018

50:14

The Liverpool and Egypt footballer Mo Salah became a phenomenon last season; breaking records and winning almost every award going in the English …

Euthanasia - Aurelia's Story

August 9th, 2018

27:35

In January, Aurelia Brouwers – a 29 year old Dutch woman, with a history of severe mental illness – lay down on her bed to die. She had been declared …

Where are you going? Hanoi

August 7th, 2018

30:36

An interrupted journey is like a portal into somebody else’s life. In this programme, Catherine Carr invites strangers to pause on their way from A to B and asks them one simple question: ‘Where Are You Going?’ In the …

Norway's Silent Scandal

August 2nd, 2018

26:46

The conviction of a prominent expert in Norway's troubled child protection system - for downloading images of child sex abuse - has put the organisation under scrutiny once again. In April this year a child psychiatrist …

Where Are You Going?: Tokyo

July 31st, 2018

30:07

Catherine Carr invites strangers to pause on their way from A to B and asks them one simple question: ‘Where Are You Going?’ She heads to Tokyo where she meets a professional pick up artists of Shibuya, an ageing, …

Central Park Calling

July 29th, 2018

50:09

Is being disagreeable a good thing? Is how we identify becoming more complex? And what is the one thing conservative Republicans are wishing …

The Life, Death and Life of Arkady Babchenko

July 27th, 2018

26:28

The resurrection of a murdered Kremlin critic in Ukraine.

Harold Evans at 90

July 25th, 2018

27:12

At a time of unprecedented change and scrutiny of the media, Razia Iqbal interviews and listens again to the archive from British newspaper man …

Crypto Rico: Blockchain for a Broken Paradise

July 24th, 2018

35:49

Hurricane ravaged Puerto Rico is becoming an unlikely launchpad for a blockchain boom. Whilst many thousands of Puerto Ricans are leaving the island after the devastation of hurricane Maria, a small group of wealthy …

Skateboarding is 60

July 23rd, 2018

49:41

Sixty years ago, a man wandered into a surf shop on the beach in Southern California with a homemade wooden board with four roller-skate wheels …

Putting Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

July 19th, 2018

49:22

The US is the home of the perfect Hollywood smile, but in one of the world’s richest countries tens of millions of people struggle to pay for a …

Kansas Child Politics

July 19th, 2018

26:28

There’s an unlikely election campaign underway in the American state of Kansas where several teenagers have joined the race to be Governor. Kansas is the only place in the US with no lower age limit on running for the …

The Private Cities of Honduras

July 18th, 2018

27:19

Luis Fajardo examines a controversial plan to create privatised cities in the impoverished Central American country of Honduras. Nearly a decade ago …

Soft Power Seduction: China Lures Taiwan’s Youth

July 17th, 2018

27:21

Young Taiwanese entrepreneurs working in a start-up hub are offered attractive sweeteners. But this isn’t in California or even Taipei, it’s on the outskirts of Shanghai. The People’s Republic of China is setting its …

In Every Dream Home a Heartache

July 15th, 2018

50:34

Over the last twenty years or so hundreds of mansions have appeared in the Kharian region of the Punjab. Each mansion represents a successful …

The Thailand Cave Rescue

July 13th, 2018

23:41

The miraculous rescue of the 12 boys and their young football coach, trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand, has been followed around the world. It …

The Mafia Under the Spotlight

July 12th, 2018

26:28

It is thought to be the most powerful Mafia organisation in the world and yet few people have heard of it. The ‘Ndrangheta crime syndicate has used …

Inside the World of the Financial Dominatrix

July 11th, 2018

27:19

Financial domination, or findom, is an increasingly popular sexual fetish revolving around money and power. In this internet-based world, submissives …

Nye Bevan: The Man Who Made the NHS

July 10th, 2018

27:17

The man who built Britain’s world famous and highly regarded National Health Service, Anuerin Bevan, often known as Nye Bevan is retold by Welsh …

Back Home from ISIS

July 5th, 2018

26:58

For years, the so-called Islamic State has managed to attract thousands of would-be jihadis and jihadi brides to join their caliphate. The extremist …

Winning it Big

July 4th, 2018

27:08

Most people have dreamed of winning the lottery. It’s a dream that has become ever more common around the world as jackpots get bigger and lotteries more numerous. But does money really make us happy, and how much does …

Only Not Lonely

July 3rd, 2018

27:04

Even today the stereotype continues that only children are selfish, spoiled and lonely – it’s the so-called “only child syndrome”. But around the world one-child families are becoming more common. So why do some parents …

Outsider's View of the NHS

July 1st, 2018

49:52

The National Health Service is the largest and the oldest single payer healthcare system in the world. It is the largest public employer in England …

Back from the Brink

June 30th, 2018

48:54

Meet the entrepreneurs facing the toughest of tests. In three vivid stories from across the globe, we hear from individuals who have created businesses and watched them fail. Now, they are picking themselves up, dusting …

Seaweed, Sex and Liberation

June 28th, 2018

26:33

In a conservative corner of east Africa, thousands of women have gained more control over their lives thanks to seaweed. In a traditional island …

Money Clinic: Nairobi

June 27th, 2018

27:03

Life coach and author Jennie Karina talks love and money with two couples in Nairobi, Kenya. Weddings, loans, family pressure - it’s all up for discussion in the BBC Money Clinic. It can be hard to talk about money, …

Money Clinic: Miami

June 26th, 2018

27:22

It can be hard to talk about money, even with those we’re closest to. And yet with financial disagreements being a major cause of divorce, it’s critical that we do. The BBC Money Clinic is inviting couples to talk …

Golden Passports

June 21st, 2018

26:58

So-called ‘citizenship-by-investment’ – the selling of passports - is a global industry worth billions of dollars and it’s completely legal. The idea …

Uganda: The Price of Marriage

June 20th, 2018

27:18

In a quest to show off new-found wealth or social status, and in a race to out-do their neighbours, people are going to extremes to put on the most lavish wedding. Ugandan nuptials are now big business with big dresses, …

What Would You Do With $100?

June 19th, 2018

27:08

What do our plans for spending $100 reveal about us and the buying power of money? Lesley Curwen travels to Washington DC where the $100 note is printed. She also meets a former drug user, a former scientist turned …

What's Mine is Yours?

June 17th, 2018

50:12

What does the way you handle your finances say about your relationship?

Guatemala – After the Fire

June 14th, 2018

26:28

On 8th March, 2017 a fire engulfed part of the Virgen de la Asuncion children’s home on the outskirts of Guatemala City. 41 teenaged girls died. A …

Sounds of the City

June 13th, 2018

27:21

Peter White, who was born without sight, tours the world, navigating primarily with his ears. Where most travellers store up visual images of the places they visit, Peter takes his tape recorder and relies on everything …

The Commission

June 12th, 2018

27:22

President John F. Kennedy was shot dead in Dallas on 22nd November 1963. Shortly afterwards the 24-year-old Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested, initially …

You Can Handle The Truth

June 10th, 2018

50:25

Students in Uganda are the guinea pigs for a new scientific discipline – researchers are teaching them to be the first firewall against alternative facts. Academics from Uganda and Norway worked with 10,000 students in …

Escaping Europe

June 7th, 2018

26:47

A new smuggling route has opened up on the edge of Europe. Every week hundreds of Syrians are risking their lives to leave the continent and return home. Nawal Al-Maghafi joins refugees on the migration route to …

Hush

June 5th, 2018

27:22

In the US, the National Park Service is leading a project to bring a little hush back to the wild. Cathy FitzGerald hears more on a hike with soundscape specialist, Davyd Betchkal, in Denali National Park, Alaska – a …

The Witch Hunts of Papua New Guinea

May 31st, 2018

27:03

In Papua New Guinea, people live in fear of persecution. They might be turned on by relatives, chased off their land by neighbours or brutally attacked by a mob. Why? They’re believed to be witches.

Assignment, this …

Is Eating Plants Wrong?

May 30th, 2018

27:12

Plant scientists from around the world are coming up with mind-blowing findings, and claiming that plants cannot just sense, but communicate, learn and remember. In an experiment in Australia, plants appeared to learn …

Triple Score Wellington

May 29th, 2018

27:12

In 2015 Wellington Jighere, a 34-year-old from Nigeria, became Africa’s ‘man of the moment’ when he won the World Scrabble Championship, the first …

The Day Hope Died: Remembering Robert Kennedy

May 27th, 2018

50:28

Why did Bobby Kennedy leave such a lasting impression on US politics and society? Revered equally across the political spectrum today, his rise to …

Zimbabwe - Where's Itai Dzamara?

May 24th, 2018

26:28

On 9 March 2015, one of Zimbabwe's most prominent critics of the Mugabe government, Itai Dzamara, was abducted from a barber shop in broad daylight. He hasn't been seen since - and his body hasn’t been discovered. …

Virtual Mothering

May 22nd, 2018

27:18

Many Filipina women working overseas have left children behind and now watch their children grow up over a screen, but does this virtual mothering help maintain their relationship while they spend years apart? Filipina …

The Royal Wedding: The Story of the Day

May 19th, 2018

49:55

Nuala McGovern brings you highlights from Windsor on the day that saw Prince Harry marry Meghan Markel. From the royal wedding build-up and anticipation to the ceremony and the celebrations beyond.

The World’s Marriage Story

May 18th, 2018

50:05

As Britain hosts the Royal Wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markel, The World's Marriage Story asks why so many people across the world …

Shades of Jewish in Israel

May 17th, 2018

26:32

Israel gives all Jews the right to citizenship – but has it become less welcoming to African Jews?

Since its founding in 1948, after the horrors of …

The Macron Effect

May 15th, 2018

27:02

When Emmanuel Macron followed up his victory in France’s presidential election with another win in the parliamentary elections, he looked set to …

My Mixed Up World

May 13th, 2018

50:26

Meghan Markle, the Royal bride to be, has spoken of her confusion as a child when asked to describe her race and the impact that has endured as she …

China’s World Cup Dreams

May 10th, 2018

26:43

China’s football-loving President Xi Jinping says he wants his country to qualify for, to host and to win the football World Cup by 2050. The men’s national team has recently been defeated 6-0 by Wales, so there’s some …

Magical Money

May 9th, 2018

27:14

A new digital currency gold rush is sweeping the world but is the bubble about to burst?

The Voices of the Amazon

May 8th, 2018

27:15

Many anthropologists and researchers have visited the indigenous peoples of the Amazon to analyse their ways of life and culture. But what would …

The Invisible Man of Britain’s Far Right

May 3rd, 2018

26:28

Simon Cox investigates the anti-immigration, anti-Muslim organisation Knights Templar International – not to be confused with the medieval Knights Templar organisation. In a recent interview its front man Jim,Dowson …

What Men Think: India

April 29th, 2018

50:17

In Delhi, Tim Samuels finds an Indian city where masculinity plays out against a backdrop of class, caste and a rapidly changing economy. It is also …

Western Sahara’s Champion Athlete

April 26th, 2018

26:57

In the wind-swept desert of south-west Algeria, thousands of athletes prepare to run a marathon through the forgotten land of Western Sahara.

The runners will pass through six refugee camps; home to over 200,000 …

Imperial Echo

April 25th, 2018

27:18

With the closing ceremonial of the 2018 London Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting barely over, BBC radio’s Royal Correspondent Jonny Dymond excavates the Commonwealth of Nation’s 19th Century origins in the …

The Response: China

April 24th, 2018

26:43

No reporters, no studios. The Response China hears directly from the citizens of the most populous county on the planet - using the recording power …

What Men Think: USA

April 22nd, 2018

50:42

In North Carolina presenter Tim Samuel finds the contradictions and cultural clashes that are playing out across the US – with men often in the …

Corruption Incorporated: The Odebrecht Story

April 21st, 2018

51:15

Odebrecht was one of Brazil’s premier companies – the largest construction firm in Latin America. But some of its success in securing multi-million …

The Mystery of Russia’s Lost Jihadi Brides

April 19th, 2018

26:28

Thousands of young Russian Muslim men were lured to join so-called Islamic State - taking their wives and children with them. But since the "caliphate" fell last year, those families have vanished - and grandmothers …

Bermuda's Change of Heart

April 18th, 2018

27:25

In a radical turn of events – Bermuda has become the first country in the world to repeal same-sex marriage. In May 2017, Bermudian lawyer Mark Pettingill and his client Winston Godwin won a case in the Bermuda Supreme …

Islands on the Front Line

April 17th, 2018

27:13

Regina Lepping travels around her homeland – the Solomon Islands – to discover how this remote Commonwealth country in the Pacific is on the front …

The King and Kennedy Assassinations

April 14th, 2018

50:50

On the 50th anniversary of the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert F. Kennedy, presenter Michael Goldfarb tells the story of how they …

The Child Saver of Mosul

April 12th, 2018

26:29

A one-woman whirlwind of passion and energy, Sukayna Muhammad Younes is a unique phenomenon in Iraq. A council official in the half-destroyed city of …

Lusaka Fire and Rescue

April 10th, 2018

27:32

Lusaka, capital of Zambia, has a population of 2.5 million people, and one central fire station to serve them. The city of Paris – of a similar size …

The King and Kennedy Assassinations

April 9th, 2018

50:50

On the 50th anniversary of the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert F. Kennedy, presenter Michael Goldfarb tells the story of how they …

Greece's Haven Hotel

April 5th, 2018

26:28

In a rundown neighbourhood in Athens there is a hotel with 4,000 people on its waiting list for rooms. But the roof leaks and the lifts are permanently out of action. None of the guests pay a penny, but everyone's …

Telling Tales: The Odyssey

April 4th, 2018

27:22

Homer’s epic spoken poem The Odyssey was composed 3000 years ago. It is a tale of Odysseus's ten year long journey home after the battle of Troy with its countless trials and adventures along the way. And alongside the …

Poking the Establishment

April 3rd, 2018

27:25

Syrian police arrest a number of dead people in a cemetery. Laugh out loud, sharp intake of breath, or both? This is the sort of uncomfortable …

Digging up the past in Catalonia

April 3rd, 2018

27:05

Why is troubled Catalonia now opening up civil war mass graves?

Spain has the second largest amount of mass graves in the world after Cambodia. Over 100,000 people disappeared during the 1930s civil war and the ensuing …

The Great Egg Freeze

April 1st, 2018

50:42

Freezing one's eggs seems the ultimate in planning a family and a career. It is now being offered as a benefit by a growing number of companies …

Telling Tales: The Sultan's Son and the Rich Man's Daughter

March 28th, 2018

27:24

The retelling of an ancient story from the African Islands of Zanzibar. It is a tale packed with intrigue and death defying ingenuity in which a young wife has to use her determination and magical powers to save her own …

Skiing Mount Lebanon

March 27th, 2018

27:25

Karl Sharro experiences the Middle East from the unique perspective of a Lebanese ski resort, an eye in the hurricane of the surrounding conflicts. …

Sisters of the Troubles

March 25th, 2018

49:44

The whole world saw the picture of Father Edward Daly waving a bloodied handkerchief as he escorted a dying teenager out of the line of fire on …

Norway - A Community in Recovery

March 22nd, 2018

27:13

In November 2017, Norwegian police published a report about sexual abuse in a remote municipality north of the Arctic Circle. It made for shocking …

Telling Tales: The Tohono O’odham Nation

March 21st, 2018

27:25

A retelling of an ancient Native American story from the Tohono O’odham Nation, whose traditional lands straddle the border between the United States …

The Magic of Fireflies

March 20th, 2018

27:30

Fireflies lit up the evenings of Kashif Qamar’s childhood in Karachi. With his friends he’d collect ‘jugnu’ as they are called in Urdu into a large …

India’s Infamous Hospital

March 15th, 2018

26:28

On the night of August 10 2017, India went into mourning. 30 patients lost their lives in 24 hours when the oxygen supply to a hospital in Uttar Pradesh was suddenly cut. Images of the dead children and stories of …

From the Steppes to the Stage

March 14th, 2018

27:23

Internationally-acclaimed opera star Ariunbaatar Ganbaataar was born into a family of nomadic herders on the immense Mongolian steppe. In this …

Grandma, Guyana and Me

March 13th, 2018

27:26

Habula Karamat is 81 years old and lives in Guyana. She has eight children – but none of them live in her home country. All eight emigrated, in …

Russia’s ‘Fake’ Election

March 8th, 2018

26:28

Ksenia Sobchak is young, wealthy and famous. Her father helped bring down the Soviet Union. Now she’s challenging ex-KGB officer Vladimir Putin for the Russian presidency. A perfect pedigree? Perhaps. But some say she’s …

Her Story Made History: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

March 7th, 2018

27:33

Lyse Doucet travels to Liberia to talk to former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf who was the first elected female head of state in Africa.

Remembering Rivonia

March 6th, 2018

27:39

South African journalist Gavin Fischer gets exclusive access to newly available recordings from one of the most significant trials in modern …

The Swedish Ambassador's Guide to Britain

March 3rd, 2018

50:52

Nicola Clase, Swedish Ambassador to the UK for six years until 2016, is fascinated by the British mindset and, unusually for a diplomat, goes out to …

Sierra Leone: Blood Mining

March 1st, 2018

26:28

In 2010, a UK-listed company began developing a mining concession in Sierra Leone it said could transform the economic fortunes of the local …

Her Story Made History: Shukria Barakzai

February 28th, 2018

27:38

Lyse Doucet meets the redoubtable Shukria Barakzai, Afghanistan's ambassador to Norway. Shukria was appointed a member of the 2003 loya jirga, a body of representatives from all over Afghanistan that was nominated to …

Japan: New Ways to Grow - Part Two

February 27th, 2018

33:56

Could living in a home designed to deliberately demand more effort from you each day help you stay fitter and more alert in your later years? And …

The Lost World of the Suffragettes

February 25th, 2018

50:44

In the 1970s, historian Sir Brian Harrison embarked on a huge project to record the experiences of women who had been part of the UK suffrage movement in the early part of the 20th Century. Now in the 100th anniversary …

Crushing Dissent in Egypt

February 22nd, 2018

27:02

A well-known blogger and activist jailed for a peaceful protest, a young man imprisoned and tortured for wearing the wrong T- shirt, a young woman …

Her Story Made History: Vigdis Finnbogadottir

February 21st, 2018

27:34

In 1980, the tiny country of Iceland did something no other nation had done. They elected a female head of state. BBC chief international correspondent Lyse Doucet travels to Reykjavik to meet Vigdis Finnbogadottir. Now …

Japan: New Ways to Grow Old - Part One

February 20th, 2018

30:09

Japan has the fastest ageing society in the world with more than a quarter of its population over the age of 65. It currently has 66,000 …

China's Generation Gap: Part Two

February 18th, 2018

50:42

Chinese reporter Haining Liu was born into the ‘one-child generation’ in the early 1980s. She explores how these political, social and economic …

Cyril Ramaphosa: Son of Soweto

February 17th, 2018

24:08

Becky Milligan looks back at the extraordinary life of South Africa’s new president. From humble beginnings, he became a lawyer, established the …

Ukraine’s Stolen Billions and the Riddle of the Helipad

February 15th, 2018

26:47

The Parkovy Conference and Exhibition Centre, a huge modernist structure of concrete and glass, stands boldly on the banks of the Dnieper River in …

Her Story Made History: Madeha al-Ajroush

February 14th, 2018

27:39

Lyse Doucet travels to Saudi Arabia to meet Madeha al-Ajroush, who battled for 30 years to get women the right to drive. It is a battle she has now won, as women in the kingdom will legally be allowed to drive later …

Digital Migration

February 13th, 2018

28:06

Goodpath was once an agricultural village but is now home to 61 massive factories and 40,000 migrant workers who came from rural China to better …

China's Generation Gap: Beijing

February 11th, 2018

51:11

Chinese reporter Haining Liu travels to Beijing and finds out what it was like for people who grew up during the Cultural Revolution and how those …

Madness of War

February 9th, 2018

26:28

In a small cold courtyard in Herat in Afghanistan, two former enemies sit chained together. One is a former warlord, the other a Taliban fighter. …

Her Story Made History: Monica McWilliams

February 7th, 2018

27:34

Monica McWilliams was one of only two local women who were at the table during negotiations which led to the Good Friday Agreement of 1998. BBC Chief International Correspondent Lyse Doucet visits Belfast to hear her …

Three Pillars of Trump: Healthcare Reform

February 6th, 2018

27:43

Donald Trump campaigned on numerous issues, but when it came time for action in the early days of his administration, healthcare reform was his top legislative priority. “Repealing and replacing” the Democrats’ …

Escape from Croatia’s Asylums

February 1st, 2018

27:05

Unlike many other nations of Europe, thousands of people with mental illness still live in asylums in Croatia. But not in Osijek… In this small city in the far east, dozens of people have moved from mental institutions …

Moving Pictures: The Temptation of Saint Anthony by Joos van Craesbeeck

January 31st, 2018

27:36

Explore the dark, demonic landscape of a 17th Century Flemish masterpiece - The Temptation of Saint Anthony - by Joos van Craesbeeck (Staatliche Kunsthalle Karlsruhe). A giant screaming head dominates the painting; from …

Three Pillars of Trump: The State Department

January 30th, 2018

27:27

What is happening to American diplomacy? It is the job of the State Department to explain to the world what America stands for, and manage the nuts …

The End Zone

January 28th, 2018

50:40

Concussion is taking much of the sheen off America’s behemoth national sport and leading to many parents forbidding their children from taking it up. …

Oprah – Global Icon

January 27th, 2018

24:10

Following her barn-storming speech about sexual harassment at the Golden Globe awards earlier this month, Mark Coles charts the rise of talk show …

Paralympic Sport – Fair Play?

January 25th, 2018

26:28

At its heart is the classification system designed to ensure people of equal impairment compete against each other. The International Paralympic Committee has warned that some athletes are exaggerating their disability …

Moving Pictures: Men of the Docks

January 24th, 2018

27:20

Cathy FitzGerald takes us to the Brooklyn docks in New York on an icy day in 1912. That is the setting for George Bellow’s Men of the Docks, an …

Three Pillars of Trump:US Defence

January 23rd, 2018

27:29

Donald Trump came to office insisting he would end America’s mismanaged wars and invest in defence. In an unusual breach with past practice he chose …

Trump: A Year in Tweets

January 21st, 2018

49:51

In January it will be 12 months of tweets from Donald Trump since his inauguration last January – a year of tweeting dangerously for his opponents, and potentially for himself. The president has posted about stopping …

Degrees of Deception

January 18th, 2018

26:28

An investigation into one of the world’s biggest degree mills, a Pakistani company, that has sold over 200,000 bogus qualifications.

IT company Axact …

Moving Pictures: Ann West's Patchwork

January 17th, 2018

27:36

Cathy FitzGerald invites you to discover new details in old masterpieces, using your phone, tablet or computer. In episode one, stroll along the …

The End of Innocence in Venezuela

January 16th, 2018

27:35

Through the chilling testimonies of two ex-gang members and one school teacher, Margarita Rodriguez of the BBC World Service explores how criminal …

Pandemic: The Story of the 1918 Flu

January 14th, 2018

50:40

Professor John Oxford, one of the world’s leading virologists, looks at how the 1918-19 flu pandemic affected every corner of the world. Over 50 …

Celebrating Life at 117

January 13th, 2018

27:06

This is an affectionate portrait of Elizabeth Gathoni Koinange - a woman who celebrated her 117th birthday last year. Her story, and that of her …

Ukraine's Frontline Bakery

January 11th, 2018

26:28

Lucy Ash meets the staff and customers of a bakery which is the one bright spot in war-torn east Ukraine. The war there between Russian-backed rebels and the Ukrainian army has dropped out of the headlines and there …

The Hackers of Siberia

January 9th, 2018

27:24

Since the time of the Tsars intellectuals were banished to the vast inhospitable lands of Siberia. And so was created an astonishing pool of …

Black and Proud in Brazil

January 4th, 2018

27:40

How black Brazilians are asserting their rights thanks to a controversial education law

Sarah Marquis, Explorer

January 2nd, 2018

27:17

In a classic Aboriginal walkabout, Swiss explorer Sarah Marquis fished, foraged and gathered food from the wild. She discusses her Australian odyssey with Steve Backshall – himself a world-class adventurer.

In 2015, …

Taming the Pilcamayo

December 28th, 2017

27:56

A journey up the 'suicidal' Pilcomayo river that separates Paraguay from Argentina... The Pilcomayo is the life-force of one of Latin America's most arid regions. But it is also one of the most heavily silted rivers of …

Leo Houlding, Rock Climber

December 26th, 2017

27:39

Leo Houlding is one of the most famous rock-climbers in the world. He tells adventurer Steve Backshall about the most bizarre and unforgettable …

Mugabe's Last Days

December 25th, 2017

28:13

An extraordinary ten days as Robert Mugabe stepped down after four decades as president. When it comes to holding onto power few can match the record …

Your Life in a Cup of Coffee

December 24th, 2017

27:26

An exploration of the mysterious, fragrant world of fortune-telling with Turkish coffee grounds, a practice popular across the Middle East. The BBC's …

Russia's Exit Dilemma

December 23rd, 2017

51:15

Stay or go? That's the choice facing Russia’s brightest and best. As the first generation born under Putin approaches voting age, many of Russia's young people are voting with their feet. Lucy Ash meets émigrés, exiles …

Thirty-Three Ways to Dispel a Chinese Mistress

December 22nd, 2017

26:49

There are 33 ways to dispel a mistress according to one of China's top love detectives. An unusual new industry has taken hold in some of the …

Rite of Passage

December 20th, 2017

27:42

No institution defines Israel, inside and out, like the formidable Israeli defence force (IDF). Robert Nicholson explores how military service helps …

Tanya Streeter: Free-Diver

December 19th, 2017

27:37

Tanya Streeter made a remarkable dive – on just one breath of air – to the unimaginable depth of 160 metres. This was a dive that nearly went very badly wrong. As Tanya tells Steve Backshall – himself a world-class …

Who Killed the Circus?

December 17th, 2017

50:30

It began in 1871 as P.T. Barnum’s Grand Traveling Museum, Menagerie, Caravan and Hippodrome. It survived the Depression and two world wars as well as rival entertainment such as film, television and radio. But, in …

Art for the Millions

December 16th, 2017

50:41

In the middle of the greatest crisis it had faced since the Civil War, the American government looked to the arts to both help lift the national …

Daphne and the Two Maltas

December 14th, 2017

26:24

A brutal killing and a divided island. Tim Whewell asks what the murder of Daphne Caruana Galizia reveals about Malta.

Afghanistan Calling

December 13th, 2017

27:36

Dr Arian fled the war in Afghanistan at the age of 15 and travelled to London. He won a place at Cambridge University and studied medicine, …

Make America Great Again

December 12th, 2017

27:28

For many within the US the word America means one thing - the United States of America. But President Trump’s use of it as a campaign tool sparked …

The Odyssey of General Anders' Army

December 10th, 2017

58:54

By the summer of 1940, a quarter of a million Polish prisoners of war had already been sent to Soviet prison camps. More than a million civilians …

Return to China

December 7th, 2017

27:06

For years China’s one-child policy meant that many pregnancies were terminated, some people did break the law and had second children, we hear Kati’s …

Neurolaw and Order

December 6th, 2017

28:08

The latest findings in neuroscience are increasingly affecting the justice system in America. Owen Jones, professor of law and biology at Vanderbilt …

The Face of China

December 5th, 2017

28:13

Xinyuan Wang looks at the evolving magazine scene in China. With traditional news stands disappearing, what future is there for the many publications …

The CIA's Secret War in Laos

December 2nd, 2017

1:01:18

Radio producer Peter Lang-Stanton thought his father was a paper-pushing bureaucrat in the State Department. Then one day, his father revealed his double- life as a spy. Much of his father’s past was a lie; he never …

Symphony of the Stones

December 2nd, 2017

49:30

Ancient history was not silent, so why is our study of it? The oldest-known musical instruments – bone flutes found in southern Germany – date back a …

Pride, Passion and Palestinian Horses

November 30th, 2017

27:02

Political differences are put to one side as a love for Arabian horses unites Israelis and Palestinians

Offence, Power and Progress

November 29th, 2017

27:07

In 2017, it’s easier than ever to express offence. The angry face icon on Facebook, a sarcasm-loaded tweet or a (comparatively) old fashioned blog …

Stockfish

November 28th, 2017

26:31

Ever since the Vikings, Norwegians have exported stockfish, cod that has been dried on huge wooden frames out in the cold, crisp winter air. Dry as a …

The Tula Toli Massacre

November 23rd, 2017

27:51

The chilling story of a massacre of Rohingya muslims in a small village in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma. On 30 August government soldiers swept …

Blind Man Roams the Globe: Christchurch

November 22nd, 2017

27:45

Christchurch is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand. As it strives to recover from the devastation caused by two earthquakes, blind broadcaster Peter White has taken his microphone to the city. He …

Europe's Illiberal Democrats: Poland

November 21st, 2017

27:27

Is Poland sliding towards autocracy, or just on a different democratic path? The government has been accused of a “systemic threat to the rule of …

The Judgement on Mladic

November 16th, 2017

27:37

Mark Urban returns to Bosnia to examine the impact Serb General Ratko Mladic had on the lives of thousands of people.

Blind Man Roams the Globe: Berlin

November 15th, 2017

27:31

Peter White explores Berlin through the sounds of a city that is finding new and imaginative ways to mark its troubled past and plan for its fast expanding future. He is struck by how much it is still haunted by the …

Europe's Illiberal Democrats: Hungary

November 14th, 2017

27:44

Hungary is becoming an “illiberal democracy”, in the words of its Prime Minister Viktor Orban. The government has changed the constitution, electoral law, and refused to take its EU-allocated quota of refugees, while …

Remembering Solidarity

November 10th, 2017

48:56

Five Solidarity members reflect on the movement that ended communist rule in Poland

Namibia’s Missing Millions

November 9th, 2017

26:28

David Grossman on the trail of Namibia’s missing tax millions revealed in the massive leak of financial data known as the Paradise Papers.

The Invisible Hand of Donald Trump

November 9th, 2017

27:49

Donald Trump’s surprise elevation to the office of president last November stunned the world and electrified the financial markets. Promises to cut red tape, bring huge infrastructure projects to life, and sort out the …

The Last Kamikazes

November 7th, 2017

27:15

Mariko Oi meets two of the very last surviving men to have been trained to fly their airplanes straight into enemy ships, ensuring certain death. …

Trump Re-Elected

November 4th, 2017

50:26

Donald Trump celebrated a remarkable Presidential election victory a year ago on 8 November 2016. Anthony Zurcher revisits that dramatic night – and …

The Lost Children of ISIS

November 2nd, 2017

26:28

In Iraq, thousands of children held captive by so-called Islamic State are now being reunited with their families– but many are still missing.

Before I Go

November 1st, 2017

27:29

Four British men and women share something in common with every single one of us across the globe - one day they will die. Alongside the fear and grief that accompanied their diagnosis, these illnesses have also …

The Red and the White: Retribution

October 31st, 2017

28:43

After the multinational force sailed away from Arkhangelsk, it was payback time for the Whites. Once the Red Army arrived in February of 1920, the …

AKA Mystery Island

October 28th, 2017

50:46

What is the fastest growing sector in tourism? It is cruise ship holidays, increasing exponentially and globally. Twenty-five million cruise …

Sweden’s Child Migrant Mystery

October 26th, 2017

26:57

Why do asylum-seeking children in Sweden withdraw from the world & how can they recover?

Nigeria: Shooting it Like a Woman

October 25th, 2017

27:56

Award-winning screen director Tope Oshin celebrates a new generation of Nigerian women film-makers who are currently reinventing Nollywood, the …

The Red and the White: Britain’s Arctic Prison

October 24th, 2017

28:03

Back in the Soviet era, boatloads of day-trippers went to the island of Mudyug in the White Sea, to visit a museum. It was based around the remains of a prison camp - and one that is very different from the decaying …

A New Church for the Red State

October 22nd, 2017

50:37

The Russian Revolution of 1917 brought a radical political change. But at the same time, a lesser-known group of religious reformers were busy …

Zanzibar: Spirits and Psychiatry

October 19th, 2017

27:12

Thousands of mentally-sick patients in Zanzibar turn to profiteering exorcists for treatment, leaving the island’s only local psychiatrist struggling to cope.

C-Section Brazil

October 18th, 2017

26:58

Brazil is the C-section capital of the world. In a country where caesareans account for over half of all births and 88% in the private sector. BBC …

The Red and the White: Intervention

October 17th, 2017

28:58

In 1918, towards the end of World War One, tens of thousands of foreign troops, Americans and British among them, were ordered to Russia in what became known as the Allied Intervention. Winston Churchill saw the foreign …

I Speak Navajo

October 14th, 2017

50:22

"Growing up and not speaking the language, I felt this loss or this void," Nanobah Becker explores what "I Speak Navajo" means today.

Nanobah Becker discovered that the voices of her grandfather and great-grandfather …

Behind Closed Doors: Solutions to Domestic Abuse in Indonesia

October 12th, 2017

27:09

Indonesia has just conducted its first ever national survey on domestic violence. It found that 41% of women had experienced some form of domestic …

Behind Closed Doors: Solutions to Domestic Violence in Peru

October 11th, 2017

27:08

Rates of domestic violence in the Peruvian Andes are particularly high - nearly double the national average. The shocking case of violence against …

Behind Closed Doors: Solutions to Domestic Abuse in Kenya

October 10th, 2017

27:09

Unity is a village without men set up by Samburu women in response to domestic abuse.

Claire Bolderson reports from three different countries: Peru, …

Pakistani Media in the UK

October 5th, 2017

26:29

Manveen Rana uncovers hate speech, sectarianism and support for Pakistani militant groups in some of Britain's Urdu language newspapers, radio stations and TV channels.

Che Today

October 3rd, 2017

27:34

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the death of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara. His face can still be seen all over Cuba. For the Cuban Government, he is …

The Silent Forest - Part Two

October 1st, 2017

50:29

The Siamese Rosewood tree is now so valuable that two small pieces carried in a rucksack are worth $500. This kind of money means that armed criminal gangs up to a hundred strong have stripped the forests of Thailand …

The Fish that Ate Florida

September 30th, 2017

50:23

As part of the BBC Life Stories season, exploring our relationship with the natural world, we travel under the sea in pursuit of a major ecological …

Africa’s Billion Pound Migrant Trail

September 28th, 2017

27:18

Countries from Europe and Africa are joining forces to stop the migrant trade. Can they succeed? And at what human cost?

Making the Grade

September 27th, 2017

27:26

British music schools run the largest instrumental exams around the world, with well over a million candidates each year taking grades from Trinity …

The Avocado Wall

September 26th, 2017

27:29

The avocado is the food that unites a nation but could it be facing the political fight of its life? From guacamole and chips at fast food chains to …

The Silent Forest - Part One

September 24th, 2017

50:35

It is Saturday morning in Pontianak in West Kalimantan in Indonesia, at a songbird competition. In every district across Indonesia you will find these, large and small. This passion for birdsong has swept the country …

Life After Life

September 23rd, 2017

48:32

The United States is the only country to sentence children to full life terms in prison. In many states, until recently, under-18s convicted of …

Panama's Vanishing Islands

September 21st, 2017

27:42

Panama’s idyllic islands are threatened by a rising sea, but one community has a plan. Could their efforts provide a model for other communities?

Forever Young

September 20th, 2017

27:27

In 2015 Liz Parrish performed a risky experiment - on herself. She took a gene therapy entirely untested on humans in the hope of “curing” what she says is a disease: ageing. Her gamble was criticised by some in the …

My First Period

September 19th, 2017

27:11

Periods are a taboo subject in many parts of the world. But for some Tanzanians, like BBC reporter Tulanana Bohela, a girl’s first period is …

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