83 episodes

Come dive into one of the curiously delightful conversations overheard at National Geographic’s headquarters, as we follow explorers, photographers, and scientists to the edges of our big, weird, beautiful world. Hosted by Peter Gwin and Amy Briggs.

Overheard at National Geographic National Geographic

    • Science
    • 3.7 • 3 Ratings

Come dive into one of the curiously delightful conversations overheard at National Geographic’s headquarters, as we follow explorers, photographers, and scientists to the edges of our big, weird, beautiful world. Hosted by Peter Gwin and Amy Briggs.

    The Arctic Story Hunter

    The Arctic Story Hunter

    What’s it like to grow up underneath the aurora borealis, on the shores of the Arctic Ocean? Photographer Evgenia Arbugaeva describes leaving—and returning to—Tiksi, a Siberian coastal town that during her childhood slowly became a ghost town in the wake of the Soviet collapse. That experience led her to find beauty in unexpected places—riding reindeer with nomadic herders and watching Arctic storms in isolated weather stations.
    For more information on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard.
    Want More?
    See Evgenia’s photos in National Geographic, which include stories of the lucrative “tusk rush” on woolly mammoth bones that have emerged from Russian permafrost as well as the murky world of butterfly trading in Indonesia.
    Evgenia’s lens also focuses on the wild whimsy of her frigid hometown, Tiksi. See more photos on Instagram @evgenia_arbugaeva and @natgeo.
    Also explore:
    Learn how a gigantic offshore oil rig could radically alter the Arctic environment.
    Listen to a Nat Geo photographer explain in a previous Overheard episode how climate change’s impact on the Arctic is threatening the way of life for Alaskan Natives.  
    If you like what you hear and want to support more content like this, please consider a National Geographic subscription. Go to natgeo.com/explore to subscribe today.

    • 24 min
    Resurrecting Notre-Dame de Paris

    Resurrecting Notre-Dame de Paris

    National Geographic photographer Tomas van Houtryve documents the layered history and revival of one of the world’s most enduring landmarks, Notre-Dame de Paris. A reflection of the city and part of its soul, the cathedral has been ravaged, reimagined, and resurrected over the course of eight centuries. Badly damaged by fire in 2019, Notre-Dame is again in the hands of skilled artisans who are braving dizzying heights and dangerous conditions to bring the cathedral back to life.
    For more information on this episode, visit nationalgeographic.com/overheard. 
    Want more?
    For more on the restoration of the Notre Dame de Paris, read National Geographic’s magazine story, which features Tomas van Houtryve’s photography and drone videos.
    Take a look at more than a century of photos of Notre Dame from National Geographic’s archive, including some very curious-looking gargoyles. 
    The late art historian Andrew Tallon had a vision to map Notre-Dame de Paris with lasers. His work has aided the reconstruction of the cathedral. 

    Also explore:
    Victor Hugo is a literary icon with deep connections throughout French culture. See the source of his inspirations here. 
    Painter Henri Matisse could see Notre Dame from his window on Quai Saint-Michel; it was the subject of many of his paintings and sketches. But many other artists had their own angle on the cathedral. See 16 of them here.

    • 32 min
    Overheard in 2022: Weekly Adventures Ahead

    Overheard in 2022: Weekly Adventures Ahead

    In 2022, we’ll journey into the Amazon to solve the mystery of a boiling river, to the South Pacific to search for the legendary aviator Amelia Earhart, and to K2, the world’s second-highest mountain, where a team of Nepalis has rewritten mountaineering history. 
    We’ll also venture into some of the world’s most isolated forests with an engineer who turns old cell phones into poacher-tracking devices. And we’ll join a team of climbers and scientists searching for rare frog species that have evolved on cliffs rising out of Guyana’s cloud forests.
    Our weekly show begins Jan. 18, hosted by Peter Gwin, Amy Briggs, and the editors and producers of Overheard.

    • 2 min
    Capturing the Year in an Instant

    Capturing the Year in an Instant

    We’ll sift through 2021 with Whitney Johnson, National Geographic’s director of visuals and immersive experiences, as she works on the “Year in Pictures” special issue and shares what makes an unforgettable image. And we’ll talk with photographers who documented the COVID-19 pandemic and the spread of California wildfires among other key moments of the year.
    For more information on this episode, visit nationalgeographic.com/overheard. 
    Want more?
    Lynsey Addario followed around a group of women firefighters this summer. Meet them in our article. And check out writer Alejandra Borunda’s piece on how land managers are using new strategies to help control wildfires.
    Also explore:
    To see Muhammad Fadli’s photos, take a look at our article on COVID-19 in Indonesia.
    For subscribers: 
    See how we summed up 2021 in the “Year in Pictures.” It hits newsstands December 15.
    Take a look at Muhammad Fadli’s work in a 2020 article that showed how the pandemic affected communities all over the world.  
    Learn the backstory of eight National Geographic photos that made an impact, including the image of the Peruvian shepherd.
    Plus, read about our famous wall of photos at headquarters in an essay I wrote for our photography newsletter.
    If you like what you hear and you want to support more content like this, please rate and review us in your podcast app AND consider a National Geographic subscription. That’s the best way to support Overheard. Go to natgeo.com/explore to subscribe. 

    • 28 min
    Descendants of Cahokia

    Descendants of Cahokia

    How did people create Cahokia, an ancient American Indian metropolis near present-day St. Louis? And why did they abandon it? Archaeologists are piecing together the answers—but Cahokia’s story isn’t finished yet. Hear how an Osage anthropologist is protecting the remaining burial mounds and sacred shrines so the descendants of Cahokia’s founders can keep its legacy alive.
    For more information on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard.

    Want more?
    Learn more about Cahokia—and see depictions of America’s first city, as well as artifacts left behind—in National Geographic History.

    See more stunning finds that unlock our deepest history in the new book Lost Cities, Ancient Tombs: 100 Discoveries That Changed the World. Subscribers can read more about the two centuries of excavation on six continents that give voice to humanity’s forgotten past.

    Also explore:
    Why did people abandon Cahokia? New research rules out a theory that environmental degradation led to its demise and shows the limits of using a modern, Western lens to study the ancient city.

    Learn more about Picture Cave—the Osage “womb of the universe”—in the book Picture Cave: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Mississippian Cosmos by Carol Diaz-Granados and Jim Duncan.

    Osage photographer Ryan RedCorn has a message about American Indian culture: “The state of things is not in decline.”

    Grisly discoveries of unmarked graves at U.S. and Canadian boarding schools have forced a reckoning over government-funded programs that were designed to strip Native American children of their language and culture—and even their names.

    If you like what you hear and want to support more content like this, please consider a National Geographic subscription. Go to natgeo.com/explore to subscribe today.

    • 30 min
    Kenya's Wildlife Warriors

    Kenya's Wildlife Warriors

    In the heart of the Serengeti, hippos bathe and hyenas snatch food from hungry lions. National Geographic Explorer of the Year Paula Kahumbu brings this world to life in her documentary series Wildlife Warriors, a nature show made by Kenyans for Kenyans. Host Peter Gwin meets up with Paula in the Serengeti to learn how she became an unlikely TV star, and why it’s up to local wildlife warriors—not foreign scientists or tourists—to preserve Africa’s wild landscapes.
    For more info on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard
    Want more?
    See the Serengeti like never before in the December 2021 issue of National Geographic. Along with heart-stopping wildlife photos, subscribers can go inside the planet’s largest animal migration: the perilous 400-mile circuit of the wildebeest.
    Subscribers can also meet a Maasai spiritual leader who protects a remote mountain forest, and read Paula Kahumbu’s essay on the future of African conservation.
    Don’t miss Welcome to Earth, a Disney+ original series from National Geographic, where Will Smith is led on an epic adventure around the world to explore Earth’s greatest wonders, including the Serengeti. All six episodes stream December 8th, only on Disney+.
    Also explore:
    Watch episodes of Wildlife Warriors on its YouTube channel, WildlifeWarriorsTV.
    Learn more about the wildlife that makes the Serengeti irreplaceable. African elephants are “ecosystem engineers” who shape their own habitat. Hippopotamuses spend up to 16 hours a day submerged in water—that’s why their name comes from the Greek for “river horse.”
    If you like what you hear and want to support more content like this, please consider a National Geographic subscription. Go to natgeo.com/explore to subscribe today.

    • 28 min

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