Episódios

  • Nightclubs are shut, dancing at weddings is not allowed and gigs and festivals are still uncertain. If you want to dance you have to do it at home. Woman's Hour shares your DIY dancing stories and gets tips from Guilty Pleasures DJ, Sean Rowley and Strictly dancer, Amy Dowden.

    Laurel Hubbard is going to be the first transgender athlete to compete at the Olympics which starts next month. It's controversial, and she'll make history. She'll be part of the New Zealand women's weightlifting team at Tokyo. Laurel came out as transgender in 2013 - and qualifies for the Olympics on the basis that her testosterone levels have been kept below a certain level for at least a year. But how does a reduction in testosterone affect other aspects of the body - such as haemoglobin levels, muscle mass and strength - that could influence competitive performance? And what research is needed to help inform the balance between inclusivity and meaningful competition in sport? Joanna Harper, a PhD researcher at Loughborough University talks about her latest study.

    Imagine having your home destroyed, losing your livelihood, and then being intimidated by those now on the land. That’s what hundreds of women in Western Uganda say has happened to them; they were violently evicted from their homes to make way for a sugar plantation. In an investigation for Woman's Hour, they've told us they are now left with no option but to live in extremely poor conditions in a makeshift camp, where they face physical and sexual abuse from the plantation workers. To make things worse, many of their husbands have abandoned them while they find employment elsewhere. The UK provides overseas aid for these woman as they fight for compensation for their lost land. But, that UK funding is due to end soon, even though after five years a legal dispute over the land is still unresolved.

    Two novels - one published tomorrow and one just out in paperback explore the human impact of environmental disaster through the lives of girls and women. They both ask - what is really important to us? What lasts when everything we think we need is stripped away? Kate Sawyer, author of 'The Stranding', her first novel, and Diane Cook, whose book 'The New Wilderness' was shortlisted for The Booker Prize last year, discuss their work.

    Presenter: Emma Barnett
    Producer: Kirsty Starkey


    Interviewed Guest: Joanna Harper
    Interviewed Guest: Sean Rowley
    Interviewed Guest: Amy Dowden
    Interviewed Guest: Sostine Namanya
    Interviewed Guest: Kate Sawyer
    Interviewed Guest: Diane Cook

  • Wednesday will be the first ever World Female Ranger Day, celebrating the work of female rangers around the world who do an important but ultimately dangerous job protecting wildlife from poachers. The emphasis this year is on the work of female rangers in Africa where there are approximately 3,500 female rangers in teams in 18 countries all over the continent working to protect endangered wildlife. One of those women is Collet Ngobeni of the all-female team The Black Mambas in South Africa. Emma also speaks to Holly Budge, the founder of the charity How Many Elephants.

    Miscarriage is a unique type of grief - occurring in one in four pregnancies - and yet it still often goes unacknowledged. Women usually wait 12 weeks before announcing a pregnancy so if they experience miscarriage early on it can be an extremely distressing and lonely experience. For women who do choose to share the news and then discover they have miscarried, it means having to inform family and friends who may find it difficult to know the right thing to say.
    National Director Ruth Bender Atik talks about a new series of cards launched by The Miscarriage Association to specifically acknowledge the sadness of miscarriage and give people an opportunity to acknowledge it in a sensitive way. She is joined by Gemma Rundell who designed empathy cards that she wished were available after she had three miscarriages.

    Under-18s who want nude pictures or videos of themselves removed from the internet can now report the images through an online tool - being billed as a world first.
    The new service comes from the Internet Watch Foundation and Childline and aims to help children who have been groomed, or whose partners have posted photos of them online without their consent. In recent years, the Foundation says it has noticed more and more of these types of images that have been created by children themselves. In the first three months of this year, 38,000 self-generated images were reported. Emma speaks to Susie Hargreaves, the head of the Internet Watch Foundation.

    Boric acid is a white powder that can do everything from getting stains out of clothes and stopping your fridge smelling, to killing ants and cockroaches. But if you look for boric acid on social media, there's another use - as a vaginal pessary to supposedly treat thrush-like infections and bacterial vaginosis. Bacterial vaginosis is common, isn't considered a sexually transmitted infection, and isn't typically serious. But Dr Jen Gunter, a Canadian-American gynaecologist and author of the Vagina Bible says she's seen an increase in the use of boric acid vaginal pessaries among her patients over the past few years, paralleling what she calls an ‘explosion’ of new over the counter boric acid products and heavy marketing from celebrities, influencers, naturopaths, and functional medicine providers.

    Ana Diamond spent 200 days in prison in solitary confinement at the age of 19, after travelling from home in the UK to visit her grandmother in Iran. She was held in a tiny windowless cell in Evin prison, Tehran, in the same block as the Iranian British charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe. The guards interrogated and taunted her saying the only place she would ever graduate from was Evin prison. But this weekend she has been celebrating having scored a first from Kings College and receiving a scholarship to study for a postgraduate degree at Oxford University. Emma talks to Ana about moving forward after such a traumatic and life changing experience.

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  • The Chief Inspector of Schools Amanda Spielman, talks to Emma Barnett about the problem of sexual abuse in schools and colleges and reflects on what needs to be done to bring about change.
    Divya Chadha Manek who has just been awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List tells us about her work with the Vaccine Taskforce, and Dr Jen Gunter, an American gynaecologist, obstetrician and author of 'The Vagina Bible' explains how Boric Acid Pessaries are being used to treat bacterial vaginosis . Do men need to actively become allies to the women they work with to stop sexism and discrimination? Would challenging behaviours that disadvantage female colleagues - from interrupting women in meetings to making assumptions about the career opportunities they want - make a difference? Emma talks to Hira Ali, a leadership trainer and author of a new book called 'Her Allies' and to Gary Ford who has co-written 'The Accidental Sexist', a handbook for men on workplace diversity.

    Presenter: Emma Barnett
    Producer: Lisa Jenkinson
    Studio Manager: Tim Heffer

  • Composer Shirley J. Thompson is the first woman in Europe to have composed and conducted a symphony within the last 40 years. She tells us about her new work Emanation, which she’s written for the disabled-led ensemble BSO.

    Dame Darcey Bussell Former Principal of The Royal Ballet & Strictly Judge, President of the RAD & creator of Diversity Dance Mix, Dame Darcey Bussell tells us about her mission to rescue Britain’s ballet dancers and raise spirits and money for struggling dance companies by creating the British Ballet Charity Gala at the Royal Albert Hall in London bringing together eight ballet companies in one evening of dance.

    We discuss the results of a BBC Freedom of Information request which asked police forces in the UK how many police had been accused of sexual misconduct. We hear from our reporter Melanie Abbott, from Ruth a former officer who found herself being sexually assaulted by a colleague and Harriet Wistrich from the Centre for Women’s Justice.

    This year the government has announced an extra 19 million pounds for domestic abuse schemes in England and Wales the majority of which will go to towards perpetrator programmes. . But just how effective are they? We hear from John who has just completed a 20 week domestic violence prevention programme at the Hampton Trust and to Vicky Gilroy who is a facilitator on those prevention programmes at the Trust.

    In today’s online digital world everything we do now on our phones or our computers—everything we look at, click on or say online—becomes “data”. Companies and governments increasingly share and use this information to make decisions about our lives. A small UK based team of experts called Foxglove is challenging how our data’s used and they’ve had some remarkable successes over the last year. It’s director Cori Crider tells us how the group successfully challenged the A Level grading algorithm last year.

    Presenter: Anita Rani
    Producer: Rabeka Nurmahomed
    Editor: Siobhann Tighe

  • Dame Darcey Bussell is the former Principal of The Royal Ballet & Strictly Judge, President of the RAD & creator of Diversity Dance Mix. She joins Anita to talk about her passion for dance and her mission to rescue Britain’s ballet dancers, and raise spirits and money for struggling dance companies, by creating the British Ballet Charity Gala. The event was performed at the Royal Albert Hall in London bringing together eight ballet companies in one evening of dance. It will be pay per view streamed from 7pm tonight and available on demand until 18 July.

    This Sunday is Father’s Day, and a new film out today on Netflix – ‘Fatherhood’ - explores the life of a single father raising his daughter. What is it like for the men who are lone parents? And how do young women feel growing up without a mother? Anita speaks to two fathers, and their daughters, to share their stories.

    The government has just published its delayed review into how the criminal justice system deals with rape in England and Wales. It comes after charges, prosecutions and convictions for rape fell over the last five years and looks at every part of the system from when an allegation is made to whether or not it makes it trial and then conviction. A crucial part of the legal chain is the Crown Prosecution Service which decides which cases go forward for trial based on the available evidence. The head of the CPS is the Director of the Public Prosecutions – currently Max Hill QC. He joins Anita to discuss the government’s review and their own plans for increasing conviction rates.

    Presented by Anita Rani
    Producer: Louise Corley
    Editor: Karen Dalziel

  • Composer Shirley J. Thompson is the first woman in Europe to have composed and conducted a symphony within the last 40 years - New Nation Rising, A 21st Century Symphony, which was originally commissioned for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee in 2002, and then used for the 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony. She’s now composed a new work, Emanation, which she’s written for the disabled-led ensemble BSO Resound. The ensemble is giving a live-streamed performance of the world premiere from Lighthouse, Poole.

    Earlier this week, Lindsey Taylor-Guthartz was ordained as an Orthodox rabbi at a Jewish college in New York. But as a woman, her ordination is not recognised by the Orthodox community in the UK. She is also no longer able to teach at the London School of Jewish Studies. Lindsey talks to Emma about the positive role of women within Orthodox Judaism and why she thinks opinion on female rabbis is starting to change. However, hers is by no means a position shared by all women within the community. Rachie Binstock explains why she is comfortable with the tradition of male-only rabbis when it comes to her faith.

    What do you look for in a good pair of pants? Advertisers have long told us that lacy, barely-there luxury is what all women want. But high on the priority list for most women is almost certainly comfort. However, experiencing the simple pleasure of a well-fitting bra and pants is not something accessible to all women everywhere. BBC Urdu reporter Saher Baloch talks to Emma about the uncomfortable problem of female underwear in Pakistan, and Qamar Zaman from underwear manufacturer Amami Clothing explains the taboo hampering efforts to bring about change.

  • The singer-songwriter Jessie Ware was nominated for Female Solo Artist and Album of the Year at this Year’s BRIT Awards. She was also included in Barack Obama’s favourite music playlist of 2020. Jessie has been busy in lockdown recording new songs for the deluxe Platinum Pleasure edition of her hit album What's Your Pleasure? In tandem with her music career, her family’s passion for food led to her weekly podcast Table Manners with her mother Lennie, and she has just released her second book - Omelette - a loving gaze of life through eating and food. She joins Emma to discuss some of her favourite food memories from white bread and spaghetti Bolognese to chopped and fried fish – and omelettes.

    A few weeks ago the Times newspaper published the results of an investigation which said that the Police and social services were failing thousands of girls as young as 11 who had been repeatedly reported missing while at risk of sexual abuse. One child in West Yorkshire had ‘disappeared’ 197 times in three years. We speak to Kelly, who was one of those regularly disappearing from the children’s homes she lived in in the 1990’s, about the impact the lack of intervention at the time has had on her life. Now volunteering as an ambassador for the Maggie Oliver Foundation, supporting other young women who have had similar life experiences, she concurs with the Times research believing these vulnerable young people are continuing to be let down. As a campaigner in this area for many years, Maggie Oliver explains what she thinks needs to happen going forward to stop the continued abuse and exploitation. They are joined by Charlotte Ramsden, President of the Association of Children's Services.

    Women football fans of Norwich City have persuaded their club to drop sexist and degrading images attached to a sponsorship deal, despite it being very lucrative. Norwich City has got rid of a sponsorship worth £5 million. The content that was considered offensive was on the Youtube and Instagram sites of an Asian online gambling company called BK8. Eddie Mullan is a big fan of Norwich City, so much so she makes banners for the matches with a group called Along Comes Norwich and Simon Stone is the BBC Sport reporter.

    Gemma Barnett has won the spoken word category of the new Poetry for Good competition, the UK’s first nationwide poetry awards launched in celebration of key workers for her poem The Front Desk. Gemma is an actor but as theatres began to close last year with COVID she realised she needed to get another job – finding work as a GP’s receptionist. She wrote this poem in admiration of the female team who worked there. Emma hears about Gemma’s experiences and hears her poem.

  • Summer’s here and despite the restrictions still in place on social gathering we’re still managing to meet up with friends and enjoy the odd night out. One aspect of that is of course looking your best and a big part of that is your hair, which has had to take a backseat in terms of grooming and maintenance over the last eighteen months of lockdowns. But, we are returning to salons and apparently trying lots of new and old styles, as well as getting more creative with colour. Hair stylist Nicky Clarke gives Emma Barnett a summer make over and Camilla Kay from Glamour Magazine points out the trends including seventies flicks and “big hair” and the “Shullet” – the modern take on the mullet.

    Most of us would think of the police as a safe place to turn to in a time of need. But it's a belief that has been seriously questioned by a couple of incidents over the past year. In a joint investigation with Newsnight we asked police forces in the UK, how many police had been accused of sexual misconduct. Of course most police officers do their jobs with integrity and honesty but campaigners say some of the results were worrying. Our reporter Melanie Abbott has been looking at this.

    Shamima Begum, Kimberly Polman and Hoda Muthana are just a few of the names who made headline news around the world after leaving their homes in the West to join the so called Islamic State. With rare access to the detention camp in Northern Syria, Alba Sotorra Clua's new film 'The Return: Life After ISIS' features some of the women who devoted their lives to the group and who feel they should be given the chance to start over, back home in the West.

    MP Jess Phillips is calling for there to be less shame around HPV – a sexually transmitted infection that she had in her twenties. Most sexually active people will contract HPV but won’t know they have it. For 90% of people it clears up but for others it can be serious. Jess Phillips found out she had HPV when she was 22 and pregnant and is talking about this to raise awareness for Cervical Cancer Screening Awareness week. Dr Sarah Jarvis also joins Emma.


    Presenter: Emma Barnett
    Producer: Kirsty Starkey

    Interviewed Guest: Harriet Wistrich
    Interviewed Guest: Nicky Clarke
    Interviewed Guest: Camilla Kay
    Photographer: Daniel Thomas Smith from Glamour
    Interviewed Guest: Alba Sotorra Clua
    Interviewed Guest: Jess Phillips
    Interviewed Guest: Dr Sarah Jarvis

  • We hear many stories of domestic abuse but rarely from those who have been the perpetrators. John, who's just completed a 20 week domestic violence prevention programme at the Hampton Trust, speaks out to encourage other men to seek help. He's joined by Vicky Gilroy who's a facilitator on the prevention programmes at the Hampton Trust .

    In today’s online digital world everything we do now on our phones or our computers—everything we look at, click on or say online, becomes “data”. Companies and governments increasingly share and use this information. A small UK based team of experts called Foxglove is challenging how our data’s used . Cori Crider a Director at Foxglove talks about how amongst other things the group successfully challenged the A Level grading algorithm last year,

    Plus as we mark Refugee Week Hella Pick joins us to talk about life as a Kindertransport survivor. She went on to carve out a hugely successful career in journalism. In her 35 year career she's reported on everything from the assassination of President Kennedy to the closing stages of the Cold War. In her book " Invisible Walls A Journalist in Search of Her Life", she explores her life as a female journalist and her struggles with identity.

    And scientific experts have urged the government to consider delaying 'Freedom Day' from the original planned Step 4 date following a rise in cases of the Delta variant. This will be devastating news for many of those working in the hospitality industry. To discuss the reaction and implications by Kate Nicholls, CEO of UK Hospitality, and Kirsty McCall, a make up artist who yesterday announced the closing of her business after 15 years.



    Presenter Emma Barnett
    Producer Beverley Purcell.

  • Paloma Faith on combining motherhood with her music as well as her reaction to the OFSTED survey that sexual harassment of schoolchildren has become normalised in schools. Her new single Monster is about her relationship with her career.

    What's the best way to stamp out sexual harassment in the workplace? We discuss with Stella Chandler, Director of Development at Focal Point Training which runs in person workplace behavioural courses that includes sexual harassment, and Deeba Syed, a lawyer who set up and manages the sexual harassment at work advice line at Rights of Women.

    The new figurehead known as Nannie is now being installed on the famous ship, the Cutty Sark: the tea clipper that resides in a specially designed dry dock in Greenwich next to the river Thames in London. Why is the figurehead of a ship often a woman? Louise Macfarlane is senior curator at the Cutty Sark.

    The Health Minister Nadine Dorries on the public call for evidence for England's first women's health strategy.

    The new no-fault divorce law has been delayed in England until 2022. What can make divorce less complicated and confrontational? We hear from Ellie, who is in the middle of a break-up, Kate Daly who runs Amicable, an online divorce service, and divorce lawyer Ayesha Vardag.

    What's so special about the relationship between gay men and their straight female best friends? In celebration of Pride Month, we discuss with Matt Cain, author and ambassador of Manchester Pride, and Jill Nalder, best friend of Russell T Davies, and the inspiration for Jill Baxter in the C4 drama 'It's a Sin'.

    Presenter: Chloe Tilley
    Producer : Dianne McGregor

  • The G7 kicks off in Cornwall today. Boris Johnson and leaders from Japan, Canada, Italy and France who make up the Group of Seven will be joined by US President Joe Biden and the German Chancellor Angela Merkel . On the agenda the biggest issues affecting our world - everything from climate change to the economic recovery post Covid. But how should they change their approach? How much better could things be if leaders, instead of lording their power over us and operating a top-down approach, did something different? In his new book 'The Power of Giving Away Power', Matthew Barzun argues that if leaders just let go and listened and worked more closely with their colleagues, we'd see things thrive and grow. Baroness Valerie Amos, now the Master of University College, Oxford joins him.

    As live music events draw closer and closer, we ask – how diverse is the music industry? And what can be done to make things more inclusive? We hear from one DJ Jaguar, about her own experiences and an initiative to train other young women.

    As no fault divorce is delayed we ask if there is a way to make divorce less complicated and confrontational? We hear from Ellie, who is in the middle of a break-up, a high profile divorce lawyer, Ayesha Vardag, and Kate Daly, the founder of Amicable – an online divorce service.

    In the Women's Super League the transfer window opens today with a new rule forcing clubs to include eight homegrown players in their squad. They must have been trained by their club, or another club in England, for at least three years before their 21st birthday. BBC sports presenter, Charlie Webster, joins Chloe Tilley.

    Today the new figurehead known as Nannie will start to be installed on the prow of the famous ship, the Cutty Sark: the tea clipper that resides in a specially designed dry dock in Greenwich next to the river Thames in London. The figurehead of a ship is often a woman but why and what is their significance? Louise Macfarlane, senior curator at the Cutty Sark, explains.

    Presenter: Chloe Tilley
    Producer: Kirsty Starkey

    Interviewed Guest: Baroness Valerie Amos
    Interviewed Guest: Matthew Barzun
    Interviewed Guest: Jaguar Bingham
    Interviewed Guest: Kate Daly
    interviewed Guest: Ayesha Vardag
    Interviewed Guest: Ellie
    Interviewed Guest: Charlie Webster
    Interviewed Guest: Louise Macfarlane

  • We talk to Paloma Faith about her music, her films, being a mother of two daughters, and harassment towards women and girls. She's got a new single out called Monster which is about her relationship with her career.

    We hear from two nurses who tell us how the past year and a half has been for them. In the light of a report published earlier this week by the Health Select Committee we discuss burn-out and how health staff are so tired because of the pandemic that many are quitting and morale is at an all time low.

    Dr Gwen Adshead is one of Britain’s leading forensic psychiatrists and has spent 30 years providing therapy in secure hospitals and prisons. She worked extensively with violent women. Her book, The Devil You Know, co-authored with Eileen Horne, is a collection of 11 stories about men and women who've committed acts of terrible violence.

    And we have bring you the breaking news that Maya Forstater has won her Appeal against an employment tribunal. Maya Forstater went to a tribunal in 2019 when her employment contract wasn't renewed after she posted tweets about gender recognition. She lost that case, but this morning - having taken it further - she's won the Appeal.

  • Women's health has long been the poor relation when it comes to medical understanding, funding and research. The government says it wants that to change - and earlier this year announced the establishment of England's first Women's Health Strategy, which will look at women's health across our lifespans. The priorities of that strategy will be shaped, they say, by the results of a public call for evidence which closes this Sunday. But after centuries of - as the Health Secretary Matt Hancock put it - 'living with a health and care system that is mostly designed by men, for men', what sort of confidence should we have in this strategy bringing about meaningful change? Emma Barnett is joined by Women's Health Minister, Nadine Dorries.

    Why are so many women dismissed, disbelieved or misdiagnosed when they seek medical help? Dr Elinor Cleghorn, cultural historian and author of 'Unwell Women - A journey through medicine and myth in a man-made world', says the answer lies in over a thousand years of history. She talks to Emma about the shockingly slow pace of change in attitudes to women's health, why women's pain still isn't taken seriously, and how the message that women's bodies are at the mercy of their thoughts and feelings has burrowed deep into our consciousness.

    In April this year, seven specialist mesh complication centres were launched in England to help treat women harmed by the use of pelvic mesh. These centres were recommended in a report by Baroness Cumberlege as a way of concentrating expertise and improving outcomes. But how are the centres working so far? And what are the fears and concerns still facing those women waiting for their mesh to be removed? Listener Judi tells us her experience, and Prof Hashim Hashim, a urological surgeon with specialist skill in mesh removal, explains why the surgery is so complicated and how medical professionals are trying to rebuild trust amid so much pain and anger.

    Around four million people have an autoimmune disease in the UK - so around 8% of the population. But of these four million, 78% are women. Reporter Carolyn Atkinson talks to Professor Lucy Walker about a new study into what might tie all these conditions together, and also Nina Christie, who currently lives with three autoimmune conditions.

    Presenter Emma Barnett
    Producer Anna Lacey

  • Last month the US Supreme Court agreed to consider a major challenge to reproductive rights, saying it will look at the state of Mississippi’s bid to enforce a ban on almost all abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy. Two days later the Republican governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, signed into law a six-week abortion ban. Why are attempts to reduce women’s access to these services being made? Last week one young Texan woman decided to use her platform at her high school graduation to give a speech on the so-called ‘Heartbeat Bill’. A speech that has gone viral. Emma speaks to 18 year-old Paxton Smith, and to Amanda Taub, a reporter for the New York Times.

    Last week we heard from Lord Heseltine who was unhappy about being forced as a Member of the House of Lords to attend an online course around sexual harassment entitled 'Valuing Everyone Training’. In response, we received a text: ‘I’m a young female staffer and did the Valuing Everyone course last autumn. It wasn’t bad, but wouldn’t stop people mistreating colleagues/staff and isn’t a replacement for a proper HR system.' We speak to Stella Chandler, Focal Point Training who runs similar courses, and Deeba Syed, a lawyer who set up and manages the sexual harassment at work advice line at Rights of Women on what needs to be done to stamp out sexual harassment in the workplace.

    Daniel Spargo-Mabbs was a popular, intelligent and charismatic 16 year-old boy. But one evening in January 2014, he never came home. Dan had gone to an illegal rave and taken a lethal dose of the drug MDMA. Seven years later, his mother Fiona Spargo-Mabbs, is one of the country’s leading drug education advisors, and has just published the book ‘I Wish I’d Known: Young People, Drugs and Decisions; a Guide for Parents and Carers'.

    Presenter: Emma Barnett
    Producer: Frankie Tobi

  • It’s just over a year since the businesswoman and conservative peer Dido Harding was brought in to set up a test and trace system to help stop the Covid-19 pandemic. The system was going to be “world beating” and help get the UK out of lockdown according to the Prime minister but the incredible costs involved – around £37 billion – have been criticised for failing to make an impact. The system has improved but what will its legacy be? Dido Harding talks to Emma Barnett on Woman’s Hour today in her first interview since leaving the role last month and reflects on the ups and downs of the last year.

    As we celebrate Pride Month throughout June we thought we'd spend a moment celebrating the relationship between gay men and their female BFF. From reality stars like Jenny and Lee on Googlebox and Olivia Bentley's relationship with Ollie and Gareth in Made in Chelsea to Will and Grace to the designer Halston and Liza Minelli. What is it about the relationship that makes them so special?

    A group of MPs, Including the former Prime Minister Theresa May, are trying to push through a vote in parliament which they hope will reverse controversial cuts to the international aid budget. It's likely that an amendment to the Advanced Research and Invention Agency bill will happen, and that technical change will result in aid spending going back to what it was. It was recently cut from 0.7% to 0.5. Preet Gill MP is Shadow International Development Secretary and Ella Whelan is a journalist and commentator who doesn't believe in foreign aid.

    Presenter: Emma Barnett
    Producer: Lucinda Montefiore

  • How possible is it to actually earn a living from sport? The latest BBC Elite British Sportswomen’s Survey found that four out of five elite British sportswomen feel they are not paid enough compared to their male counterparts and more than 60% of UK’s top female athletes make less than £10,000 a year. On the other hand revenue generated by women's sport in the UK is set to grow to £1bn a year by 2030 – up from £350m a year currently – making it one of the fastest growing sectors in the sports industry. The Women’s Sports Trust says the key to unlocking this impressive growth will be the increased visibility of female athletes and teams. Emily Defroand is a Great Britain and England Hockey player, Zarah El-Kudcy is a Trustee at the Women’s Sports Trust and the Head of Commercial partnership development at Formula 1, and Dr Ali Bowes is a senior lecturer in the Sociology of Sport at Nottingham Trent University.

    Lord Michael Heseltine, who was Deputy Prime Minister in the mid-nineties, says he's had to attend a House of Lords course to do with what's right and what's wrong when it comes to conduct between colleagues, especially between men and women. The training is called "Valuing Everyone". The House of Lords has been very firm about this online course on inappropriate behaviour and prejudice, saying all peers must attend. Lord Heseltine was sent a reminder that he MUST complete it, which seems to have aggravated him a great deal. He’s here, and so is Wera Hobhouse, Lib Dem MP. In the House of Commons, the course isn't mandatory for MPs.

    Language – and the way we use it – is forever changing. We explore how the word ‘bitch’ and other similar words with a sexist history are being reclaimed and reinvented by women to mean something positive. Chante Joseph is a social media creative and writer. Jacqueline Springer is a Black music and culture journalist. Helen Taylor is an Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Exeter.

    Why, after decades of social progress is motherhood still so much harder than it needs to be? Why aren't we honest about the realities of being a mother? These are just two of the themes explored in a trio of books about motherhood that have just been published. It's not as if these questions haven't been asked before. There is a rich vein of literature from Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex through to Adrienne Rich's classic study Of Woman Born, Juliet Mitchell's A Women's Estate , Jane Lazarre's The Mother Knot and many more. And many second wave feminists fought hard for the rights of mothers on both sides of the Atlantic. And yet very little, if any progress, has been made according to this new crop of authors. Elaine Glaser is the author of Motherhood: A Manifesto, Pragya Agarwal is the author of (M)otherhood: On the Choices of Being a Woman, and Marina Fogle co-presents the podcast 'As Good As It Gets?'

    Arooj Aftab is a Pakistani composer, based in Brooklyn. She joins Anita to talk about her music and influences from jazz and Qawwali to Jeff Buckley and Abidi Parveen. She explains how grief has shifted the tone of her music to ‘heavy metal harp’, and discusses her latest album, Vulture Prince, which honours and reimagines centuries-old ghazals, a form of South Asian poetry and music that she grew up listening to with her family.

    Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is the author of novels including 'Purple Hibiscus', 'Half of a Yellow Sun', which won the Orange Prize (now called the Women’s Prize for Fiction), and 'Americanah', which won the US National Book Critics Circle Award. Chimamanda has also delivered two landmark TED Talks: The Danger of A Single Story, and We Should All Be Feminists, which started a worldwide conversation about feminism and was published as a book in 2014. She has now written a more personal book. On 10 June 2020 her father died suddenly in Nigeria. A self-confessed daddy’s girl, she has now remembered her father in a tribute, 'Notes on Grief'. Her mother has since also died. How do you deal with double heartbreak?

  • Arooj Aftab is a Pakistani composer, based in Brooklyn. She joins Anita to talk about her music and influences from jazz and Qawwali to Jeff Buckley and Abidi Parveen. She explains how grief has shifted the tone of her music to ‘heavy metal harp’, and discusses her latest album, Vulture Prince, which honours and reimagines centuries-old ghazals, a form of South Asian poetry and music that she grew up listening to with her family.

    Now the dust has settled on the recent court ruling on compensation for women with PIP Implants, it's become clear a group of women will miss out. The French court ruled that those who had implants pre 2006 will not get any money, as it decided the safety regulator who approved the implants for market couldn't have been aware of any problems before that date. Lawyers representing the women will go back to the French supreme court to fight this. Melanie Abbott has been looking into this.

    Therapist and researcher, Guilaine Kinouni’s book Living While Black looks at the racial inequalities within the mental health system and their consequences for Black people. She is joined by author, academic, and broadcaster Emma Dabiri whose new book What White People Can Do Next looks at racial justice and how we demonstrations of support can be transformed into real and meaningful change.

    Language – and the way we use it – is forever changing. We explore how the word ‘bitch’ and other similar words with a sexist history are being reclaimed and reinvented by women to mean something positive. Chante Joseph is a social media creative and writer. Jacqueline Springer is a Black music and culture journalist. Helen Taylor is an Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Exeter.

    Presenter: Anita Rani
    Producer: Frankie Tobi

  • Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is the author of novels including 'Purple Hibiscus', 'Half of a Yellow Sun', which won the Orange Prize (now called the Women’s Prize for Fiction), and 'Americanah', which won the US National Book Critics Circle Award. Chimamanda has also delivered two landmark TED Talks: The Danger of A Single Story, and We Should All Be Feminists, which started a worldwide conversation about feminism and was published as a book in 2014. She has now written a more personal book. On 10 June 2020 her father died suddenly in Nigeria. A self-confessed daddy’s girl, she has now remembered her father in a tribute, 'Notes on Grief'. Her mother has since also died. How do you deal with double heartbreak? Chimamanda joins Emma to examine the layers of loss and the nature of grief.

    Lord Michael Heseltine, who was Deputy Prime Minister in the mid-nineties, says he's had to attend a House of Lords course to do with what's right and what's wrong when it comes to conduct between colleagues, especially between men and women. The training is called "Valuing Everyone". The House of Lords has been very firm about this online course on inappropriate behaviour and prejudice, saying all peers must attend. Lord Heseltine was sent a reminder that he MUST complete it, which seems to have aggravated him a great deal. He’s here, and so is Wera (pron: VERA) Hobhouse, Lib Dem MP. In the House of Commons, the course isn't mandatory for MPs.

    Parm Sandhu grew up in the Midlands - a child of immigrants from the Punjab whose main ambition for her she says was to become an ‘obedient wife’. Forced into an arranged marriage at 16 she later fled to London and in 1989 joined the police. In her memoir ‘Black and Blue: One Woman’s Story of policing’ which is out next week, she tells her story of her thirty years in the Metropolitan police - rising through the ranks from a WPC to Chief Superintendent and becoming New Scotland Yard’s most senior ethnic minority woman in the force. She tells us her 30 year career was marred by repeated racism and sexism and a charge of gross misconduct which she was later cleared of. This led to her bringing an employment tribunal claim against the force and reaching a financial settlement with them last year.

    The sun is out and if you’re looking out your summer dresses and skirts you might also be weighing up the state of your skin after months of slobbing at home in your lockdown comfies. Sales of personal grooming products like deodorant, skincare products and razors went down during the pandemic so will we be embracing the natural look? Or maybe you already do as a member of the hairy legs club? We talk to the stand-up comedian, Ashley Storrie about her beauty regime and also to George Driver, the acting Beauty Director of ELLE UK.

    Presenter: Emma Barnett
    Producer: Kirsty Starkey

    Interviewed Guest: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
    Interviewed Guest: Michael Heseltine
    Interviewed Guest: Wera Hobhouse
    Interviewed Guest: Parm Sandhu
    Interviewed Guest: Ashley Storrie
    Interviewed Guest: George Driver

  • You may have visited Kew Gardens and seen the incredible gallery of botanical art created by Marianne North - she is one of several female artists being featured at the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum as part of Coventry's UK City of Culture Celebrations. The exhibition, called UnNatural History, explores not only the historical role of artists in the science of natural history - but also contemporary artists addressing the current climate crisis. But with so much focus on the environment how effective is art in grabbing the public's attention? Alice Sharp is the founder of Invisible Dust who have curated the exhibition and Frances Disley is an artist who examines the medicinal properties of plants and healing power of nature.

    Why, after decades of social progress is motherhood still so much harder than it needs to be? Why aren't we honest about the realities of being a mother? These are just two of the themes explored in a trio of books about motherhood that have just been published. It's not as if these questions haven't been asked before. There is a rich vein of literature from Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex through to Adrienne Rich's classic study Of Woman Born, Juliet Mitchell's A Women's Estate , Jane Lazarre's The Mother Knot and many more. And many second wave feminists fought hard for the rights of mothers on both sides of the Atlantic. And yet very little, if any progress, has been made according to this new crop of authors. Elaine Glaser author of Motherhood: A Manifesto and Pragya Agarwal author of (M)otherhood: On the Choices of Being a Woman join Emma.

    A few weeks ago as meeting up began to look possible again, we asked you to tell us about who you were desperate to see again and why. Last week we heard from Chris and her mates in Cardiff - this week listener Sally-Ann from Reading wanted to nominate 'the girls' - she's had a tough year and not seeing them face to face has been hard. Our reporter Jo Morris spoke to Sally-Ann as she prepared to host a garden get-together and popped into one of their regular Zoom chats to eavesdrop on their banter and memories.

    Boric acid is a white powder that can do everything from get stains out of your clothes, to stop your fridge smelling, to acting as a pesticide. But apparently there's another use for this chemical remedy, and mentions of it have been popping up lately on social media threads and message boards: it can also be used as a treatment for chronic bacterial vaginosis. However, it is also being used for less serious vaginal infections. Dr Jen Gunter, American gynaecologist, obstetrician and author of the Vagina Bible says she has seen an increase in the use of boric acid vaginal pessaries among her patients over the past few years, paralleling an explosion of new over the counter boric acid products and heavy marketing from celebrities, influencers, naturopaths, and functional medicine providers. She explains her concerns.

  • It's one of the most unforgettable moments in pop. Sinead O'Connor singing Nothing Compares 2 U straight into the camera. Big eyes, shaved head, minimal make up - tears rolling down her cheeks. It catapulted her to fame whether she liked it or not. Sinead joins Emma to talk about her autobiography," Rememberings"

    The ‘work from home’ guidelines are expected to be scrapped on June 21 - should the government’s current roadmap continue. If you were writing a manifesto for the best way for women to work post-pandemic what would it say? We hear from author and columnist, Elizabeth Uviebinené who argues in her new book ‘The Reset’ for a fundamental reset of our entire work culture, Danny Harmer, Chief People Officer for Aviva on how big companies are addressing the flexibility needs of their workforce and Mark Gatto, father of a two-year-old and research associate in masculinities and working parenthood,



    Presenter Emma Barnett
    Producer Beverley Purcell
    PHOTO CREDIT; Donal Moloney