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80 Days: An Exploration Podcast

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A Society, Culture and History podcast
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80 Days is a podcast dedicated to exploring little-known countries, territories settlements and cities around the world. We're part history podcast, part geography podcast and part ramble.
Each episode, we'll land in a new locale and spend some time discussing the history, geography, culture, sport, religion, industry, pastimes and music of our new location.

More details on www.80dayspodcast.com, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram @80dayspodcast | Support us on www.patreon.com/80dayspodcast

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Recent Episodes

Djibouti (S4.03)
S04E03 Djibouti Audio In this episode of 80 Days: An Exploration Podcast, we’ll be talking about Djibouti, a small nation located on the Northeast Coast of the Horn of Africa. Bordered by Eritrea to the North, Ethiopia to the West and Somalia to the south, Djibouti lies on the west side of the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait, the narrowest point of Gulf of Aden. https://media.blubrry.com/80_days_an_exploration/content.blubrry.com/80_days_an_exploration/Djibouti_80Days.mp3 Around 30km across the strait lies Yemen. This chokepoint into the Red Sea, which overlooks the approaches to the Suez Canal, has long made Djibouti a desirable location for naval bases. Dominated by two main groups – the Afar and Issa Somali people, Djibouti today is balanced between these two factions, having endured a protracted civil war in the wake of winning its independence from France in 1977. Occupying a total area of around 23,000 km2 (9,000 sq mi), Djibouti is the third smallest country in continental Africa, and today has a population of around 880,000, the vast majority of whom live in the captial city of Djibouti City. Nearly 94% of the population is Muslim while the remaining 6% are Christian, and official languages are French and Arabic. Djibouti today attracts plenty of foreign investment, and aims to become “Africa’s Dubai.” This episode, just like all of our recent ones, is supported by our Patreon backers. If you want to help out the show, you can help out by joining us over on www.patreon.com/80dayspodcast to give us whatever you can in terms of financial support and avail of all the lovely awards and extras that entitles you to. If you’re unable to support us financially, you can always leave us a review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts from. Your hosts, as always, are Luke Kelly @thelukejkelly in Hong Kong, Mark Boyle @markboyle86 in the UK, and Joe Byrne @anbeirneach in Ireland . (Theme music by Thomas O’Boyle @thatthomasfella) Some further reading: Peter Tyson, writing for PBS Nova, attempts to tackle the “Where Is Punt” question here. Brittanica has loads of additional info on Adal and the Adal Sultanate, discussed by Joe in this episode. You can find additional info on the Ifat Sultanate which succeeded it at openedition.org. The New World Encyclopedia has a wonderful, long form post on the Scramble for Africa, which Djibouti was caught up in. For more info on our old friend Ferdinand de Lesseps and his ill-fated other canal project, you can listen to our season one episode on Panama. We also touch on old friend Vasco Da Gama in this episode. The Christmas special minisode referenced is here. The disastrous Cossack invasion of Sagallo in what was then French Somaliland is profiled in an excellent blog by towardsthegreatocean.com, which Luke quotes from in this episode. Bruno Macaes profiles modern Djibouti in a recent article for Politico, entitled “The most valuable military real estate in the world.” The LSE has a long-form article on Somali regiments during WW1. The Guardian also profiles the “forgotten Muslim heroes who fought for Britain in the trenches” in WW1. You can read the New York Time report on Djibouti’s declaration of independence in 1977 in the paper’s archives here. To learn more about the Djiboutian Civil War, which broke out in 1991, see New World Encyclopedia’s lengthy article on the conflict here. The plans to turn modern Djibouti into “Africa’s Dubai” are detailed by The Culture Trip here. The SCMP journalist James Jeffrey details his experiences with the new Chinese-backed railway revitalisation project here.   Advertisements __ATA.cmd.push(function() { __ATA.initSlot('atatags-26942-5d7dc17844f86', { collapseEmpty: 'before', sectionId: '26942', location: 120, width: 300, height: 250 }); }); __ATA.cmd.push(function() { __ATA.initSlot('atatags-114160-5d7dc17844f8a', { collapseEmpty: 'before', sectionId: '114160', location: 130, width: 300, height: 250 }); });
Pitcairn Island (S4.02)
S04E02 Pitcairn Island Audio In this episode of 80 Days: an exploration podcast, we’ll be talking about Pitcairn Island, a tiny volcanic island in the South Pacific, most famous for its mutineer inhabitants, who fled there after the famous Mutiny on the Bounty in 1789. https://content.blubrry.com/80_days_an_exploration/80_Days_S04E02_Pitcairn.mp3 Pitcairn forms part of a four-island group known as the Pitcairn Islands, but is the only island in the group to be inhabited. Its nearest inhabited neighbours are Easter Island to the East and French Polynesia to the West. Pitcairn is the least populous national jurisdiction in the world, and by far the smallest place we’ve ever talked about in terms of population, boasting only around 50 residents as of 2018, all descended from the 9 Bounty mutineers and the few Tahitians they brought with them to the island. The island itself is rocky, and experiences warm weather year-round thanks to its location just south of the Tropic of Capricorn. Today, Pitcairn is the only remaining British Overseas Territory in the South Pacific. Its economy relies heavily on tourism, as well as the highly-prized honey produced by the bees on the island. While all islanders speak English, their first language is Pitkern, a creole language that has derived from 18-century English dialects and Tahitian. This episode, just like all of our recent ones, is supported by our Patreon backers. If you want to help out the show, you can help out by joining us over on www.patreon.com/80dayspodcast to give us whatever you can in terms of financial support and avail of all the lovely awards and extras that entitles you to. If you’re unable to support us financially, you can always leave us a review on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts from. Your hosts, as always, are Luke Kelly @thelukejkelly in Hong Kong, Mark Boyle @markboyle86 in the UK, and Joe Byrne @anbeirneach in Ireland . (Theme music by Thomas O’Boyle @thatthomasfella) Some further reading: The Pitcairn Islands Study Centre has more info on the early history of the island group. Joe speaks about his use of Librivox for this episode. He listened to both The Mutiny of the Bounty and Other Narratives by William Bligh and The Eventful History of the Mutiny and Piratical Seizure of H.M.S. Bounty: Its Cause and Consequences by Sir John Barrow, both giving markedly different accounts of the mutiny. You can read/listen to more on the conspiracy theories surrounding the fate of Fletcher Christian on Skeptoid. Sir Joseph Banks, the man behind the expedition, is profiled here in Britannica. Two of the books mentioned by Luke include Mutiny on the Bounty by Peter Fitzsimons and The Bounty: The True Story of the Mutiny on the Bounty by Caroline Alexander. Byron’s The Island, inspired by the mutiny and discussed in this episode, can be found here. An extended version of Mel Gibson’s “I am in hell” scene, a clip of which is used in this episode, can be found here on YouTube. More on Pandora’s Box and the escape from the HMS Pandora can be found here. The New Zealand Herald has a feature on the child abuse scandal on Pitcairn, and the island’s struggle to attract residents is detailed here in The Telegraph. The European Commission has plenty of detail on the economy of the island here. You can watch Errol Flynn’s 1933 film In the Wake of the Bounty here on YouTube.  
Faroe Islands (S4.01)
S04E01 Faroe Islands Audio In this episode of 80 Days: an exploration podcast, we’ll be talking about Faroe Islands, an autonomous group of islands in the North East Atlantic. Home to almost 50,000 people and with historical links to Denmark, Faroe Islands is a country within the Kingdom of Denmark, but has a distinct culture all of its own, in part due to their isolation and remoteness from the Danish mainland (and pretty much everywhere else also.) https://media.blubrry.com/80_days_an_exploration/content.blubrry.com/80_days_an_exploration/80Days_Faroes.mp3 The Faroe Islands have probably been inhabited since approximately 300 AD onwards according to archaeological evidence, but the first full settlement was established by legendary figure Grimur Kamban. The Faroe Althing, may be the oldest parliament in the world if, as thought, it was established in approximately 900AD. Faroe Islands were occupied by the British during World War 2 in order to prevent invasion by Nazi Germany. Fishing has always been a mainstay of the economy and advances in technology versus depleted fishing stocks have had opposing impacts on the fragile fortunes of the archipelago. We also had the pleasure of speaking to Arni Zachariassen, a local Faroese who was able to give us plenty of interesting insights into the local culture and mindset. Big thanks to him for his time! (Listen to Arni on The Faroe Islands Podcast many years ago here) This episode, is the first of Season 4, and while many things in life change, (Joe has just taken to wearing jaunty hats for example) our need for your support has not. If you like the show, and want to support, you can do us a major service by joining us over on www.patreon.com/80dayspodcast to give us whatever you can in terms of financial support and avail of all the lovely awards and extras that entitles you to. If you do not have a ha’penny of course, firstly God bless you, but also you can help us for free by giving us an ole five star review on Apple Podcasts. Waterfall at Gásadalur. Photo by Ævar Guðmundsson on Flickr | Creative Commons 2.0 By Attribution License Your hosts, as always, are Luke Kelly @thelukejkelly in Hong Kong, Mark Boyle @markboyle86 in the UK, and Joe Byrne @anbeirneach in Ireland . (Theme music by Thomas O’Boyle @thatthomasfella) Some further reading: “The Faroe Islands: Interpretations of History” by Jonathan Wylie “Faeryinga Saga” (full text in English here)tells the tale of Tróndur and Sigmundur and their relatives are the turn of the first millennium  – History of the text Various articles about newer research questioning if Vikings were indeed the first colonisers of the islands: The Independent (2013); The Icelandic Times (2016); Durham University (2013); Archaeology (2013) The link between your Bluetooth headset and a Viking king (Smithsonian) “The Sheep Letter” Photos of St Magnus’ Cathedral (fotostrasse) An explanation of Faroe Islands importance in World War 2 (YouTube) For more info on the British occupation of Faroe Islands in WW2 see here Thoughts of politicians today on Faroese independence (theLocal.dk) The Faroese battle with: 1) Google Translate; and 2) Google StreetView/SheepView (official video) Music: Tróndur’s curse on the Christians was the subject of a poem by Janus Djurhuus (1881-1948)  set to music by successful folk metal group Týr (1998-now)! https://youtu.be/E9AwVjRbhto?t=144 Flanders and Swann’s satirical song “Rockall“ An extract of “Lívsmynd” by Xperiment The text of the poem “The Death of St Brendan” by JRR Tolkien, which you heard, can be found here Watch: Sigmuds kvaedi – ring dance  

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Podcast Details
Started
Jul 28th, 2016
Latest Episode
Sep 9th, 2019
Release Period
Weekly
No. of Episodes
42
Explicit
No

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