World Service

Why 80 per cent of young people in this Macedonian town have turned to posting ‘fake news’

7 September 2019 9:00 am

It’s such a relief to turn on the radio and hear the voice of Neil MacGregor. That reasoned authority, his…

Why do we still use the Qwerty keyboard layout and not Dvorak?

4 May 2019 9:00 am

‘Can you fly down this evening?’ she was asked by her boss in the Delhi office of the BBC. ‘Yes,…

Is the increasing secularisation of funerals a good thing?

23 March 2019 9:00 am

‘You’re thinking these girls all wrong,’ Miss Mai tells Enid in Winsome Pinnock’s play Leave Taking, adapted from the recent…

Yemen's capital Sana'a after another airstrike, where Aziz H's award-winning new play is set. Photo: Mohammed Huwais / AFP

Why the BBC International Playwriting Competition really matters

26 January 2019 9:00 am

We don’t know whether ‘Aziz H’ listened to radio plays as he grew up in Yemen. In fact we don’t…

Michelle Obama during the 2008 Democrat primaries. Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

When the first world war ended, many soldiers were left with ‘a terrible empty feeling’

10 November 2018 9:00 am

‘It was so unreal,’ said one of the first world war veterans about the long-awaited Armistice. It was the most…

When haddocks flirt, they sound like a motorbike revving up

20 October 2018 9:00 am

Flies buzzing, strange rustling, crunching sounds, and then the most chilling screech you’ll have heard all week. Vultures were feeding…

A warning to those who argue that we live in a visual society

7 July 2018 9:00 am

‘Can one person really grasp the significance of what another person has been through?’ asks Dr Rita Charon in this…

BBC Arabic’s version of Woman’s Hour is rather different to Radio 4’s

10 February 2018 9:00 am

When the BBC’s Arabic-language network went out on air for the first time 80 years ago, on 3 January 1938,…

Why talking about death is a essential part of living

4 November 2017 9:00 am

Mandy was 38 when she was told she was ‘in the end stage’, suffering from COPD and finding it more…

Seeing the light

23 September 2017 9:00 am

‘You can’t lie… on radio,’ says Liza Tarbuck. The Radio 2 DJ was being interviewed for the network’s birthday portrait,…

Face time

16 September 2017 9:00 am

The inimitably pukka voice of Jacob Rees-Mogg echoed through Radio 4 on Thursday morning. He was not, though, talking about…

The listening project

9 September 2017 9:00 am

As Classic FM celebrated its quarter-century on Wednesday with not a recording but a live broadcast of a concert from…

The joy of the Proms

22 July 2017 9:00 am

Summer nights, hot and humid, mean just one thing — it’s Proms season again. Sore feet, sweaty armpits, queuing outside…

Radio 4's bold challenge to government policy

21 May 2016 9:00 am

Monday’s ‘World on the Move Day’ on Radio 4 was a bold challenge to government policy and proof that radio…

Might Eurovision determine the outcome of the EU referendum?

14 May 2016 9:00 am

You might not think that the Eurovision Song Contest (screened live from Stockholm tonight) could have any connection with how…

Devastation after the collapse of the Twin Towers (Photo: Getty)

How trauma is passed down through the generations in our DNA

23 April 2016 9:00 am

Sue Armstrong’s programme on Radio 4 All in the Womb (produced by Ruth Evans) should be required listening for anyone…

Could radio save Syria?

2 April 2016 9:00 am

Could radio, and in particular a weekly soap, have a role to play in the Syrian crisis? You might think,…

Why the World Service is worth every penny

5 March 2016 9:00 am

What makes the World Service so different from the rest of the BBC? I asked Mary Hockaday, the controller of…

Could a change of body language make a difference to American policing?

9 January 2016 9:00 am

One of the most shocking items of recent news has been the bald statistic that the number of people shot…

A gripping Start the Week from a Paris on the edge

21 November 2015 9:00 am

It was as if Andrew Marr and his guests on Start the Week on Monday morning were standing on the…

Just writing about this radio programme makes me feel nauseous

6 June 2015 9:00 am

If you’re in the least bit squeamish you’d better stop reading now. What follows is not for those who blanch…

What happened to the children who survived the Holocaust?

16 May 2015 9:00 am

‘I call Zelma Cacik who may be living in London,’ says the announcer, in the clipped RP accent of the…

Why Bette Davis loathed theatre

18 April 2015 9:00 am

It was called Frankly Speaking and by golly it was. The great screen actress Bette Davis was being interviewed by…

What it’s really like to live in India today - stressful

14 March 2015 9:00 am

After a month cooped up in a Scottish castle, no internet, no TV, and no radio, watching hectic snowflakes billowing…

Why Putin is even less of a human than Stalin was

21 February 2015 9:00 am

LBC likes to tell us it’s ‘Leading Britain’s Conversation’, though in the case of weekday pre-lunch presenter James O’Brien you’ll…