Given what a year 2020 has been, it's perhaps unsurprising that "doomscrolling" made a couple of "Word of the Year" lists. If you're not familiar with the word, doomscrolling refers to continually reading through negative news online, despite the toll on the reader's mental health. And, again, considering what 2020 has been like, it's understandable why so many of us found ourselves continually scrolling through the latest CNN headlines or Washington Post expose.
But fortunately, there are other ways to keep current. The last few years have seen a surge in excellent podcasts hosted and produced by Black women — some transforming the news into humor-inflected, digestible content from a decidedly Black perspective. Other Black women have used the format to produce content that covers broader aspects of life — love and romance, entertainment news, books, and all the other things seemingly subordinated by the coronavirus and politics this year.
If you're looking for some great podcasts to help you break away from the latest White House scandal or even help you escape the news in general, these five are essential.
Thirst Aid Kit
Hosted by Bim Adewunmi and Nichole Perkins, Thirst Aid Kit ran from 2017 until September 2020, racking up praise from Mashable, Vanity Fair, and AV Club. But it's still available online and worth checking out. Each episode begins with the hosts discussing a celebrity they find attractive and using that discussion as a springboard for broader humorous conversations about race, lust, and representation.
Jemele Hill is Unbothered
Award-winning sports reporter Jemele Hill's podcast, Jemele Hill is Unbothered, features interviews and conversations with musicians, politicians, sports figures, and other celebrities. Speaking with the same candor for which she's been known throughout her career, Hill, along with co-hosts Michael Arceneaux and Cole Wiley, expertly connect and dissect the relationships between her guests and broader societal issues on each episode.
This next podcast should come with a huge NSFW warning. Whoreible Decisions is a raunchy exploration of all things sex-related with hosts Mandii B and WeezyWTF. It's also incredibly popular, with its hosts selling out live shows and boasting substantial social media followings. If you're looking for a wide-ranging, side-splittingly funny dive into everything from sugar daddies to fetishes, check out Whoreible Decisions.
The Stoop, hosted by Hana Baba and Leila Day, covers various aspects of Black identity with honesty and humor. Covering weighty topics in a way that never feels burdensome, The Stoop captures unheard and underrecognized perspectives in the Black community. It's received praise from The New York Times, Women's Health, and may help you make (some) sense of the times we're in.
HoodxHolistic is the brainchild of hosts Cort and Ash, a married Black lesbian couple from Houston. The podcast features the two speaking frankly and unapologetically about everything from their relationship to love to trauma, with a strong emphasis on self-care and self-love. It's definitely worth checking out, no matter your sexual identity or relationship status, for its powerful insights on Black womanhood.
These are just a few of the dozens of new great podcasts by Black women that have started over the past few years. Do your own digging on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, and other platforms. But you can't go wrong by starting with one or two of these five.