Welcome to the 8th podcast episode of this side series, the Podcast Spotlight. In this episode, we talk with Bill Poorman and Nikolaj Groeneweg, co-hosts of the Singapore-based podcast We don’t mean to dwell but…as they introduce the following 2 podcasts:

Podcast 1: The Sinica Podcast

The Sinica Podcast is part of the SupChina network, a platform for on-the-ground perspectives on politics, economics, technology, and culture. It is hosted by the enigmatic Kaiser Kuo, a freelance writer and musician, formerly of various rock outfits such as Tang Dynasty and Spring and Autumn. Generally, episodes are presented in a discussion format, and feature guests from media and academia to talk on all sorts of topics including US-China relations, Chinese foreign policy, Hacking, and much more.

Scroll below for links and accompanying materials discussed:

Kaiser Kuo, picture by Adhiyanto Goen

In the first episode of the wonderfully-titled Nu Voices podcast, hosts Joanna Chiu and Alice Xin Lui lament on how the narrative on China is always presented with a western tinge. The Sinica Podcast, in this vein, can be seen as a defiant response. Stories and perspectives told by native Chinese, or by individuals who have studied and lived in China. In this sense, if your media diet is dominated by western outlets – your New York Times, your Wall Street Journals – then this podcast might a little jarring. But, if you are the kind of person who appreciates authenticity and is genuinely curious about China, then this is definitely a podcast for you.

Podcast 2: Mindscape by Sean Carroll

By day, Sean Carroll is a Research Professor of theoretical physics at the California Institute of Technology. By night, he is host of Mindscape, a straightforward conversation-style podcast with intellectuals in fields spanning science, society, philosophy, culture, and so on. Aside from this, Carroll is also the author of various titles such as The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself, The Particle at the End of the Universe: How the Hunt for the Higgs Boson Leads Us to the Edge of a New World, From Eternity to Here: The Quest for the Ultimate Theory of Time, and Spacetime and Geometry: An Introduction to General Relativity.

Scroll below for links and accompanying materials discussed:

Sean Carroll, picture by Karen Hurst

Fair warning here, albeit the informal style of the show, the topics discussed are not for the casual listener. Unless you were steeped in these topics as well, you might be better off finding other podcasts to fill your gym workout or your commute to work. However, if you take these topics seriously, and are patient enough to invest your attention well, then this podcast can be richly rewarding. Where traditional conversational podcasts engage listeners in personal stories and relatable anecdotes, Carroll’s Mindscape tries to break down incredibly technical subjects in an almost nonchalant manner. It’s still not an easy listen, but there is incredible insight and perspective that can be learned through each episode.

Music by Pandrezz: Takin’ you for a ride

Once again special thanks to Bill Poorman and Nikolaj Groeneweg for being such amazing guests on this episode. Special thanks to Bill for graciously inviting me to his home and allowing me to record with his equipment, it truly was an absolute pleasure, and I am incredibly grateful for the gesture. Also, on a personal note, I would never have thought that out of all places, podcasting would be where I could meet people who share my concerns on moving and living abroad. Just goes to show you how powerful the medium really is. For that, do check out their podcast, We don’t mean to dwell but…, here. Also, Nikolaj has his own separate podcast, the Future Growth podcast, which you can find here.

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