For almost all of their lives, women have been taught to stay silent. They were taught to sit crossed legged, smile, and be what society wants them to be. But their journey to document their countless stories of pain and heartbreak, of love and lust, and of inspiration and joy has been paved with the help of podcasting. As a tool and instrument to connect with other Arab women around the world, and create a ‘woman-to-woman’ safe space for all.
Whether you’re stuck in traffic on a long drive, cooking dinner, or just need to give your eyes a rest from your screen, podcasts will be your new best friend.
Check out these five Arab women podcasters who have taken digital audio into a whole new realm.
Named after the Cairo neighborhood, BULAQ is a podcast about contemporary writing from, and about, the Middle East and North Africa. Co-hosted by Ursula Lindsey and M Lynx Qualey, BULAQ is a podcast that transcends with the listeners, taking them on a time-travel trip to the Arab region through literature, and through the world of literature in the lens of current events.
“We talk about books written in Aleppo, Cairo, Marrakech, and beyond. We look at the Arab region through the lens of literature, and we look at literature – what it does, why it matters, how it relates to society and history and politics – from the point of view of this part of the world.” – The BULAQ team so describes itself.
2. Dukkan Show
Power woman, Reem Hameed, has been co-hosting the Dukkan Show, arguably known as the longest-standing podcast in the Middle East that delivers conversations on identity and culture. As an inspirational and conversational listen, the Dukkan Show discusses topics that stimulate heartfelt discussions in an open and safe space.
3. Radical Contemporary
From the heart and soul of Cairo, Egypt, blooms Radical Contemporary’s very own podcast host, Nour Hassan. A writer herself inspired by the arts, Hassan is a podcaster that puts artists of all kinds, such as designers, photographers, musicians, and filmmakers on a pedestal to share their stories, love for the arts, and inspirations. In need of a creative push? Grab your cup of coffee and listen to this creative hub!
4. Kerning Cultures
If you feel like you need to be swayed away into the world of entrepreneurship and thrill of firsts, Kerning Culture is the podcast, because it is the first venture-back, female-led podcast platform in the MENA Region. In 2015, co-founders Hebah Fisher and Razan Al-Zayani started their podcast with the aim of having a platform that reflects on identity, culture, and important rhetoric and MENA narratives.
5. Hammam Radio
One powerful woman is a force to be reckoned with, but five powerful women, this is a revolution. Hammam Radio’s hosts, Abir, Rasha, Paola, Jojo, and Hayat make sure that not only their voices are heard, but they speak for every woman who has been silenced and subordinated. It’s the place, where diversity meets acceptance and acceptance means understanding, what a better platform to discuss the arts, the loves, with a splash of patriarchy smashing, than Hammam Radio? The answer is none!