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For many people, the name Caroline Herschel will be unfamiliar, but she was one of the most significant women on the English scientific scene during the late 18th and early 19th century. Sister of the well known William Herschel (he of the discovery of Uranus and its moons and many other significant scientific discoveries), she first worked as his assistant in his astronimical works, and then went on to become a noted astronomer in her own right. She discovered eight new comets in her lifeti ...
 
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Mitch Moxley (@mitch_moxley) talks about the world of book writing, agents and getting your magazine stories optioned by Hollywood. Here are links to some of the things we talked about: Mitch's Rent a White Guy story for The Atlantic - https://bit.ly/39YlbwO His book Apologies to My Censors - https://amzn.to/3B64BqR His true crime story Knives Outb…
 
Going viral. North Korea. Anthony Bourdain. Beijing Olympics. Long-form magazine journalism. Narrative non-fiction. Stage plays. Executive editor at Maxim. Mitch Moxley has done a lot of stuff. As a magazine editor and freelance writer, previously in China and now in New York City, Mitch tells us about his careers highs and disappointments, as well…
 
The journalist’s holy trinity: the right time, the right place, the right beat. You’re lucky if you find it once in your career. Sue-Lin Wong (@suelinwong) tells how she thinks she hit it in the Hong Kong protests in 2019. Now working as a China correspondent for The Economist based in Hong Kong, she also has the unusual distinction of having been …
 
Financial journalists don’t get the respect they deserve. Scottish journalist Jamie McGeever (@ReutersJamie) has traveled the world covering financial markets, including NYC, London, Madrid and all over Brazil and Europe. His work at Reuters put him at the center of the chaos of the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. Also discussed: bullfighting, Celtic…
 
Abdi Latif Dahir, The New York Times' East Africa Correspondent, talks more in-depth about his coverage of Rwanda and shares a special moment reporting in Mogadishu. This is a bonus content from FoCo's interview with Abdi. For the full interview, please check out episode 54. Note: Apologies that this is not the usually scheduled full episode that I…
 
The long road to a Pulitzer. Now a Mexico-based reporter for Vice, Emily Green (@emilytgreen) has had a couple career booms and busts. The WSJ job that doesn't pan out leads her into radio reporting. The pandemic leads her to flee Mexico. But you never know, maybe you'll be sitting in your childhood bedroom and feeling sorry for yourself, when you …
 
Childhood journals lead to journalism. Abdi Latif Dahir (@Lattif) started journaling as a way to process the violence around him when, at 8 years old, his family returned to Somalia from Kenya. He tells us how that experience influences his reporting on conflicts as East Africa Correspondent for The New York Times. He also talks about his reporting…
 
An Editor-at-Large is not someone who is wanted for arrest by the police for crimes against journalism. Bryan Curtis (@bryancurtis) fills us in on what it means to be an Editor-at-Large for The Ringer, which includes hosting the popular media analysis podcast The Press Box. Countries featured: USA Publications featured: Nightline, The New Republic,…
 
Patrick St. Michel (@mbmelodies) isn’t a professional foreigner, he just plays one on TV. As a freelance music and pop culture journalist, Patrick will take us inside the world of J Pop, K Pop, Japanese baseball and convenience store food. And yes, he’s willing to go see your band play in Thailand on less than 24 hours notice. Countries featured: J…
 
"Welcome to China, where nothing is allowed but everything is possible." Independent publisher Graham Earnshaw helped launch the careers of a generation of China journalists by giving them jobs at Reuters, Xinhua Finance or his own magazine China Economic Review. Working for Graham, host Jake Spring remembers a man surrounded in a mythology of old …
 
"A love letter to journalists." A fitting description for the film Spotlight and possibly this podcast. For our 50th episode, we look back at the 2015 movie and hear views on the movie from eight past guests. Guests in order of appearance: Ep. 3 - Camilla Costa, BBC, London (@_camillacosta) Ep. 9 - Brian Rosenthal, New York Times, New York (@brianm…
 
Reporting in jungles isn't for the faint of heart. Rhett Butler, founder and editor-in-chief of environmental news website Mongabay, talks about getting stranded in a dangerous situation in Suriname, the many jungle diseases he has gotten, and some tips for getting phone signal in the rainforest. He also tells us the origins of Mongabay go back to …
 
Yes, sometimes film critics hurt people’s feelings. Alison Willmore (@alisonwillmore) will get into the nitty gritty of what it’s like to work as a critic from the demise of newspapers and the rise of the freelance critic to how New York mag has diversified its stable of critics. Follow us on Twitter @foreignpod or on Facebook at facebook.com/forei…
 
Zooming with Chloé Zhao - what could better typify the pandemic era? Alison Willmore (@alisonwillmore) takes us inside how she did her recent cover story for New York magazine about Zhao. We also hear about what it’s like to be a critic - from panning the remake of Mulan to championing foreign movies that get much less attention in the United State…
 
The podcast tradition of foreign correspondents getting ejected from countries continues. For Gerry Shih, China Correspondent for the Washington Post, there was the added twist of getting kicked out during a global pandemic. On the eve of his reassignment as WaPo’s India bureau chief, Gerry looks back at his time covering China, which he is convinc…
 
What do bagels and sexual harassment have in common? The food industry! Serena Dai (@ssdai), a senior features editor at the San Francisco Chronicle, has made her name by thinking and writing about all things food - emphasis on ALL THINGS - from the hilarious/inconsequential to the direly serious issues of sexual misconduct and racism. A local jour…
 
Deep in the jungle, Fabiano Maisonnave finds amazing stories to tell. He is the only correspondent for a major Brazilian newspaper to be based in the Amazon rainforest region. Long before he reported on remote Amazon tribes, Fabiano tells us about leaving his first assignment in farm country over death threats. He then sets off on a long period as …
 
Prague, come for the theater, stay for the podcasting. Morgan Childs, co-host and producer of the Foreign Insiders podcast, tells us about getting her start reporting stories on food and “weird” Eastern Europe. She has now found a new professional life as an audio journalist, launching her podcast series on migration in the Czech Republic. Countrie…
 
Jane Arraf (@janearraf) didn’t go seeking war, war came to her. She first moved to Iraq in 1997 under Saddam Hussein and was kicked out twice before returning when the U.S. invaded. She also bore witness to the carnage in Mosul in the wake of ISIS. Her reporting on conflict stands out for its humanity, vibrancy and - when possible - hope. She is no…
 
Remember traveling? While you’re stuck inside in the pandemic, you can still travel far and wide thanks to the Far from Home podcast by public radio veteran Scott Gurian. Scott takes you along for the ride on one of the world’s epic road trips from London to Mongolia and back across the deserts of Iran and mountains of central Asia. The Peabody awa…
 
Sarah Esther Maslin explains what it's like to work at the Economist including the lack of bylines, its distinctive voice and viewpoint, and an unusual time when she broke some news. Sarah’s story about the Amazon rainforest - http://econ.st/3oCdC3I Her story about the Honduras election - http://econ.st/3tbOXGL…
 
We go deep on a history of Central American violence with Sarah Esther Maslin (@sarahmaslin). She discusses the years she’s spent reporting out a prospective book about Latin America’s largest modern massacre in El Salvador, stemming from her lifelong fascination with violent tragedies and the marks they leave on society. That project led her to fr…
 
It turns out there’s a lot more to Russia than just Putin and election meddling. Sure, we talk about that, but independent radio producer Charles Maynes in Moscow tells us tales of Russian culture from the early Soviet era to present. While he may not always think of himself as a journalist, that may be what makes his journalism work so great. Also…
 
We prowl the halls of the Dallas Mavericks basketball team in the capable hands of Tim Cato (@tim_cato), a staff writer with The Athletic. Tim got into sports reporting as a 17-year-old fan, but now he’s seen too much and the fandom has melted away. Still, he loves his job reporting on the huge characters, power dynamics and colorful feature storie…
 
Ode to a Grecian journ(alist). Family looms large in this episode with Joanna Kakissis (@joannakakissis), a correspondent in Athens for National Public Radio, whose Greek parents instilled in her the importance of their culture from a young age. She made a mark early in her career as part of a Pulitzer finalist newspaper reporting team before retur…
 
As a journalist, who you are matters. Freelance journalist Fariba Nawa (@faribanawa) tells how she learned this the hard way. But her identity, that early in her career may have hindered her, has turned into a strength. She has gone from refugee to a reporter who covers refugees. She is an Afghan American proud of her heritage who also struggles wi…
 
A very special election episode! Libby Nelson (@libbyanelson) talks to us about how she is approaching U.S. presidential election coverage as Senior Deputy Policy Editor at Vox. As you may well have guessed, covering this election has turned out to be very different than we could have predicted. Libby also talks about how she came to work for journ…
 
What’s this? There’s more? We talk in-depth about his job helping shape the visual language of The New York Times and his approach to video journalism, as well as an offbeat story set in North Korea that never quite happened. Countries featured: North Korea, USA Jonah's short doc about zoonotic diseases - https://nyti.ms/2F0fOkS Follow us on Twitte…
 
Gen X photo bum finds journalism, makes good. Well, ok, there’s about 15 more steps in the middle that leaves out. And like 60+ countries. Jonah Kessel (@jonah_kessel) is proof that the right camera can change someone’s life. Now at The New York Times, he is constantly trying to push the limits of what video and visuals can do, even when those limi…
 
A love story between Cuban spies. Jungle warfare in Central America. A military coup in Chile. A roller coaster relationship with Fidel Castro. Lucia Newman, Latin America Editor and a Senior Correspondent in Chile for Al Jazeera English, has seen and reported on it all over several decades covering the region, dodging more than a few bullets along…
 
What do you do when there's a pandemic on, but you are a video journalist with no choice but to go out to capture the images you need? Atish Patel (@atishpatel, Insta: atishp) a videographer for Agence France-Presse discusses the calculations he makes when deciding whether to go out. He also talks about how being fired helped him to change his pers…
 
What insanity inspires 20,000 normal people to run 56 miles (90 kilometers) every year in South Africa? Ryan Lenora Brown (@ryanlenorabrown) tells us how Apartheid helped make this race a phenomenon. She talks about trying to tell stories that don’t revert to stereotypes of Africa, even as we ponder the ethics of white foreigners reporting on South…
 
Bopha Phorn (@bophaphorn) tells of hunting down a Russian pedophile and fearing for her life as she reported on deforestation in Cambodia. The International Women’s Media Foundation has honored her brave reporting with its Courage in Journalism Award. Bopha now reports for Voice of America’s Khmer language edition, a rare source of unrestricted new…
 
The Feel Good Episode of the Year! Bangladeshi photographer Ismail Ferdous (IG: ismailferdous) went from borrowing money to pay for a camera to his first paid project being published in the New Yorker. He lays out his philosophy of seeking the work that speaks to him and working on personal projects without thinking of where it will be published. N…
 
From covering covert arms deals under Chilean dictator Pinochet to seven-hour speeches by Fidel Castro, Anthony Boadle (@AnthonyBoadle) has written the first draft of Latin America’s history over recent decades. Not without risk - he’s been kicked out of a country (but allowed back), had his apartment broken into (likely by state security) and is f…
 
Roving the African continent to report the bloodiest conflicts is a far cry from being a polished news anchor, sitting behind a desk. Tomi Oladipo (@Tomi_Oladipo) has shown incredible range in his career working for the BBC for 12 years in Africa before becoming a news presenter for German broadcaster DW News in Berlin. Tomi discusses the toll of c…
 
Sometimes you have to get fired again and again (and again) to figure out your place in the world. Ed Clowes’ (@edclowes) story is not your common journalistic tale. Kids, don’t try this one at home. He gets fired for increasingly noble reasons though, ultimately getting kicked out of the city-state of Dubai. Be warned, despite the title of this ep…
 
After public health got too depressing and following gorillas through the jungle proved monotonous, Laurel Chor (@laurelchor) turned to journalism. She quickly made a name for herself covering at civil unrest in Hong Kong, also doing a couple years' stretch working for the Vice News Tonight television show on HBO. She discusses her circuitous path …
 
How do you cover violence in a thoughtful way? Megan Crepeau (@crepeau) had plenty of time to chew that question over working the overnight beat at The Chicago Tribune, trawling the city with police scanners and looking for news. Now she brings that perspective to covering Chicago’s main criminal court, one of the busiest in the United States. Mega…
 
Aarti Betigeri (@pomegranitaa) takes us from Australia to India and back again, touching on some new publications like Monocle magazine and geographies like Sri Lanka along the way. She also keeps it real about the struggles of working in a media landscape dominated by Murdoch and seeking more rights for Australian freelance journalists. We also ta…
 
The world of Chinese high finance is actually way more stupid and ridiculous than you probably realize. Seriously, sometimes millions or billions of dollars change hands for relatively stupid reasons like, delivery coffee + China, what’s the worst that could go wrong? Pete Sweeney (@petesweeneypro), an opinion columnist for Reuters Breakingviews, g…
 
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