Good Weekend Talks podcast: the best of 2020 – Sydney Morning Herald

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The rise and stall of Premier Daniel Andrews Melissa Fyfe's July 2020 cover story profiles Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, whom Melissa first interviewed in May, when he was surfing a wave of popularity before COVID-19 turned the tide. Hear the story in this podcast, after which, Melissa is joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland and The Ages then state political editor Noel Towell to delve into the mistakes and lessons Andrews has learnt from the pandemic.

Far northern NSW is a honeypot for health and wellness seekers, yetone local intensive care specialist says, Ive seen more vaccine-preventable diseases since working in the Northern Rivers than I saw in 10 years of working in remote Aboriginal communities. Credit:Paul Harris

The anti-vaxxer capital of AustraliaTim Elliotts cover story looks at how one hippie town, Mullumbimby, became ground zero for the anti-vaxxer and vaccine-hesitant movement. Hear the story, followed by a conversation in which Tim joins Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland and Sydney Morning Herald health editor Kate Aubusson to discuss the rise of vaccine hesitancy.

America a country in crisis.Credit:AAP

Why did America stop being great?Nick Bryant's August 2020 cover story examines the troubles besetting the United States, and argues that the election of Donald Trump as president in 2016 was the culmination of trends that had been growing for decades, that were subsequently laid bare by the COVID-19 pandemic.

After this story reading, Nick is joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland and The Age senior writer Farrah Tomazin, who covered the US in the lead-up to November's presidential election. The trio discuss the faultlines in American society, from racial division and religious animosity to rising inequality, and ponder whether the Democratic ticket of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be enough to bridge those divides.

Hospital beds in the Great Hall of the Exhibition Building during the Spanish flu pandemic.Credit:Museums Victoria

Spanish flu: were we ready for another pandemic?Fenella Souter's story, written a century after the Spanish flu pandemic, examines the lessons we heeded and those we missed from a century ago. In this podcast, Fenella is then joined by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland along with expert virologist Professor Kanta Subbarao from the WHO and the Doherty Institute, for a discussion about the deadliest flu event in human history, and what we can apply to the pandemic we now face.

I dont miss the politics of politics, if you know what I mean, says Malcolm Turnbull of leaving Canberra. I miss government, I miss being able to make policy, make decisions.Credit:Nic Walker

Malcolm Turnbull: the politics, the people, the memoirDavid Crowe's story examines the tumultuous career of former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull and his tell-all memoir, A Bigger Picture. In this podcast, David is joined by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland for a freewheeling discussion of the hot-button topics in Mr Turnbull's life and times from Tony Abbott to climate change failure through the lens of his memoir.

The article's author Konrad Marshall and his then future wife, Nikki, who is from upstate New York. They met 20 years ago in Cairns.

Long-distance love affairsKonrad Marshall's cover story looks at the challenges of relationships in which one person is from Australia, and the other from abroad. After this reading, Konrad is joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland, along with a special guest - Konrad's American wife, Nikki - for a chat about the painful sacrifices and bittersweet joys of their long-distance love.

The dominant themes of Jacinda Arderns responses to tragedies are love and kindness, not anger and vengeance and that has proved appealing to the world beyond NZ.Credit:Djeneba Aduayom/Headpress

The challenges facing Jacinda ArdernAmanda Hooton's story is an in-depth profile on Jacinda Ardern, the young, charismatic world leader, interviewed just after she was first elected New Zealand's Prime Minister. Amanda is joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland, and political editor Peter Hartcher for a discussion on Ardern's handling of the COVID-19 crisis, Christchurch massacre and Christchurch earthquake, and how she compares to other world leaders.

Occupational therapist Anita Brown-Major and her satin vulva puppet, which she uses in teaching.Credit:Eddie Jim

Get cliterate: redefining female sexualityMelissa Fyfe's story profiles the game-changing doctor who mapped the clitoris and delved into the G-spot, Dr Helen O'Connell. After the feature reading, Melissa joins Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland and occupational therapist Anita Brown-Major in conversation to delve deep into some of the most persistent misconceptions about female sexuality, from the nature of the clitoris itself to the mystery of the G-spot.

Virginia Trioli: 'People just want to move through the world unharassed, and be entitled to use their own voice if theyve been harmed.'Credit:Kristoffer Paulsen

Virginia Trioli on sexual harassment in the wake of #MeTooVirginia Trioli's 2019 cover story is a rumination on how sleazy politicians and crude bosses still plague us in the workplace. Virginia is then joined in conversation by Sydney Morning Herald senior journalist Jacqueline Maley and Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland to discuss AMP's recent #MeToo moment and the explosive allegations against former High Court Justice Dyson Heydon.

This man helped raise two girls one of whom is his biological child with a lesbian couple. When the women planned to move to New Zealand, he took a stand.Credit:James Brickwood

The sperm donor who became a legal fatherGreg Callaghan's story, published in July 2019, looks at how a sperm donor became a legal father in a landmark High Court legal ruling. Greg is then joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland, along with the lawyer who represented the donor, Tahlia Bleier, for a discussion about the legal ramifications for sperm donors, and the women who use them to have children.

A two-million-year-old fossil named DMH 134, reconstructed from more than 150 individual fragments: the earliest known skull of Homo erectus. Credit:AAP/Supplied by La Trobe University

The two-million-year-old skull rewriting our origin storyJane Cadzow's story, published in June 2020, introduces a pair of Melbourne archaeology students who recently found the oldest Homo erectus fossil ever identified: the Drimolen skull, in South Africa. Jane is then joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland and the head of La Trobe Universitys department of archaeology and history, Andy Herries who was part of the discovery team to discuss how this would rewrite humanity's family tree.

The church Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his family attend: Sutherlands Horizon, in Sydney's south.Credit:Peter Braig

Inside Scott Morrison's Pentecostal churchJacqueline Maley's April 2019 story gives insight into Australia's first Pentecostal Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, and the Horizon Church where he and his family congregates. Jacqueline is then joined in conversation by Good Weekend editor Katrina Strickland and Professor Cristina Rocha, an expert in religion from Western Sydney University, to discuss the rise of this fast-growing Christian movement thats starkly different to many of its counterparts.

To read more from Good Weekend magazine, visit our page at The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and Brisbane Times.

We deliver the best of Good Weekend to your inbox so its there when youre ready to read. Sign up for the Herald's Good Weekend newsletter here and The Age's here. Sent every Saturday.

Anu Hasbold is a podcast producer for The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald.

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Good Weekend Talks podcast: the best of 2020 - Sydney Morning Herald

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