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The Heart

English, Human interest, 18 seasons, 122 episodes, 2 days, 5 hours, 28 minutes
The Heart ( is an audio art project about power and love. From Mermaid Palace ( Radiotopia (
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Ode to Sound

KP says sweet nothings about the great love of her life: SOUND. A shared moment and meditation: recorded at 4AM in Athens Greece with the window open as the rain fell, gazing at the Athenian mountains aka: former home of the Gods. Use this episode like you would a meditation app: come back to it when you need a moment of peace. Take out the meditation pillow. Play it when you’re taking psychedelic drugs. Use it to relax during your break at work. Play it with a group of friends on a road trip. Play while you take a bath. Half ambient music, half guided meditation, half transcendental experience across the space-time continuum. Don't forget to DONATE to Mermaid Palace <3 We need your dollars to keep making feminist sound art!In this episode: Zeus [from KP: this was not staged. the moment I mentioned his name, he threw a thunderbolt and I happened to be recording. I share the moment AS IS.]The apartment of the badass artist and feminist Doreen Toutikian (check out her work! For pix of her gorgeous pad: follow KP on insta @kaitlinprest). An audience in LA singing with KP:  the premiere of this performance, originally commissioned by the On Air Festival 2019. (thanks Scott and Jemma!). An audience in Milan singing with KP:  the reason she was in Europe! (thank you to the friends who came all the way to Milan to see the piece: Juj, Ali, Rosa, Ariel and Doreen. Thank you Sarah, Martina and Andrea from Chora Media, and to the opera singers who practiced in the conservatory as KP walked in to do her sound check).Send us a recording of you singing along at [email protected]!
4/3/202418 minutes, 29 seconds
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There are certain kinds of things a sweater spends its life dreaming about. Primarily: achieving the coveted position of: favourite.  The story underneath the story of this episode is one that we will never tell. What we CAN tell: is that the sweater who speaks in this episode is real and it lives to this very day in KP’s trunk. It was given to her in the year 2014, 9 years ago this very week of November. She washed the sweater once and only once since then. The last time she wore it was last week.  This is episode 3 of The Shadows, made by Kaitlin Prest in collaboration with Phoebe Wang and CBC Podcasts. Musician and artist Johnny Spence performs as Devon. Radio goddess Veronica Simmonds performs as Jean Simmonds. The series was edited by Sharon Mashihi, who also appears in this episode as the other sweaters abandoned in the sweater graveyard. “Palestine is a feminist issue”, Yazan Zahzah. Keep showing up. Donate to Ashtar Theater’s initiative for psycho-social relief interventions for affected youth in Ramallah. If you like this show and the other incredible shows on Radiotopia like Weight For It, Hang Up, Normal Gossip, Articles of Interest, The Stoop and more, participate in our fundraiser!
11/28/202341 minutes, 33 seconds
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Processing Palestine

As people all over the world grieve and struggle, KP invites you to take a moment to reflect, meditate, pray, manifest and grapple with the question of what those of us who are not there can do. Links and Resources from this episode: How to Stop a Genocide (while in the global north), Hussan S.K This is not a “conflict” or a “civil war”, Ghassan Kanafani 1970 The Inside Story Podcast: What Influence Can International Opinion Have on the War In Gaza? [Al Jazeera] Jewish Voice for Peace Do Better: Spiritual Activism for Fighting and Healing from White Supremacy by Rachel Ricketts @officialjakegyllenhalal MC Abdul Thank you to all of the friends of KP who lent their voices and their experiences to this episode.
11/5/202347 minutes, 46 seconds
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Sandy Claus

Surprise, it’s a holiday special! Join us for a little queer holiday cheer as journalist America Stevens tracks down Santa’s older, gayer, drunker, sister… Sandy Claus. This piece is an adaptation of a live show written and performed by comedian, Kristen Becker. Produced by Katie Fitzgerald.
12/24/202118 minutes, 58 seconds
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Hurricane Boyfriend

Love found in an unlikely place: a natural disaster. As we cozy down and prepare to say goodbye to 2020, The Heart is here to wish you all some pandemic love for 2021.
12/30/202019 minutes, 31 seconds
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e4e: stop living on video

start searching for transformative pleasure. In conversations with trans viewers and makers of porn, Mara investigates porn as a healing portal for trans people seeking embodiment. Part 2 of e4e, a mini mini series where two artists seek experiences where their minds and bodies are connected.
12/2/202030 minutes, 47 seconds
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e4e: chasing purple

Ari's fumbles with homemade dildos as a teen dyke riot grrrl leave a lasting impression that doesn’t evolve until years later, with an experience of embodied sex she’s never forgotten. This episode was written, sound designed & produced by Ari(el) Mejia, edited by Nicole Kelly & Phoebe Unter and hosted by Kaitlin Prest. Part 1 of e4e, a mini mini series where two artists seek experiences where their minds and bodies are connected. Hit Ari up!
11/18/202030 minutes, 50 seconds
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Sometimes It's Lonelier in Relationships

Kamala wants to fill the empty spaces of her loneliness. This episode was written by Kamala Puligandla, produced by Phoebe Unter, edited by Nicole Kelly and hosted by Kaitlin Prest. Kamala is the Editor-In-Chief at and her first novel, Zigzags, is coming out on October 19th, 2020. Order her book here.
9/7/202026 minutes, 33 seconds
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Race Traitor: what makes a mom a white mom?

All parents shape our identities. Phoebe’s affluent white parents made a particular set of choices to raise her in an all-white neighborhood with a sordid history. Phoebe investigates what she inherited as a result. Part 3 of a 3 part series. Produced by Phoebe Unter, edited by Sharon Mashihi and hosted by Kaitlin Prest.
6/3/202037 minutes, 35 seconds
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Race Traitor: can we be friends?

In a community with a strict “no new white friends” policy, Phoebe asks: how does my being white affect our relationship? Part 2 of a 3 part series. Produced by Phoebe Unter, edited by Sharon Mashihi and hosted by Kaitlin Prest. Featuring Nicole Kelly & Kamala Puligandla.
5/20/202032 minutes, 27 seconds
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Race Traitor: who taught you to be white?

Phoebe is surprised to learn that even she, an angry Jewish dyke, still participates in upholding white supremacy culture. Part 1 of a 3 part series. Produced by Phoebe Unter, edited by Sharon Mashihi and hosted by Kaitlin Prest.
5/6/202029 minutes, 55 seconds
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Divesting From People Pleasing: Memory

When trauma is held in the individual and collective body, shame, grief, and rage are passed down for generations. Part 3 of a 3 part series. Divesting From People Pleasing is a mini series produced by Nicole Kelly, edited by Chiquita Paschal, and hosted by Kaitlin Prest.
2/26/202030 minutes, 9 seconds
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Divesting From People Pleasing: Power

The body has information. Part 2 of a 3 part series. Divesting From People Pleasing is a mini series produced by Nicole Kelly, edited by Chiquita Paschal.
2/12/202037 minutes, 57 seconds
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Divesting From People Pleasing: Threat

As NK gets older, she gets smaller, she gets more and more quiet. But the self loathing voice in her head just gets louder. Part 1 of a 3 part series. Divesting From People Pleasing is a mini series produced by Nicole Kelly, edited by Chiquita Paschal.
1/29/202030 minutes, 24 seconds
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Lesbian Separatism Is Inevitable

How NK & Phoebe fell in art love.
1/15/202027 minutes, 11 seconds
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People Who Need People

Samara and Kelsey got hitched. We celebrate their marriage by re-releasing this episode (originally ‘Samara + Kelsey’) with a life / wife update.   This episode was originally produced by Samara Breger with The Heart.
7/10/201725 minutes, 37 seconds
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Doing Time

This story is part of Radiotopia’s network-wide theme, Doing Time. In the early 2000’s, Kathleen reads through the personal ads of a magazine; on a whim, she writes to a man. Thus begins a relationship with the greatest love of her life. ‘Private family visits’ is the correct term for conjugal visits. Its purpose is not just for sex, but to help maintain strong relationships between inmates and their families. Studies have shown that private family visits can help reduce recidivism. Original interviews by Dee LaComte.
6/21/201715 minutes, 27 seconds
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First Comes Marriage

Arranged marriages, although they sound scary to our Western ears, are considered extremely successful. Divorce rates are much lower. But those are statistics. What about being in love with the person that you married? A Harvard study found that partners in arranged marriages, over time, end up being more in love than couples who marry for love. Our friend Ryan Kailath has known this his whole life, because he grew up with it. His parents met for 15 minutes before they married. *Includes the trailer for our upcoming season, “No.”
4/4/201723 minutes, 55 seconds
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Mariya – Extended Cut

Featuring never-before-heard scenes and a post-award interview with Mariya Karimjee, this is an extended version of the award winning documentary, “Mariya.” A story about Mariya’s journey to figure out sex after FGM. Released in May 2016, “Mariya” received the Gold Award (Best Documentary) at the Third Coast International Audio Festival. Mariya Karimjee is a writer based in Karachi, Pakistan. Read her original essay here. Editorial support from Brendan Baker, Allen Watts, Kelsey Padgett, Samara Breger and Nadia Bajwa. Additional support from Kari June. Another version of this story can be heard on This American Life.
11/23/201644 minutes, 38 seconds
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Love, Harry

Have you ever had a friend you thought you might be in love with? Have you ever slept in a bed beside this person, and wondered if your hand was grazing yours on purpose? Sharon receives emails from Harry, a not-so-secret admirer. It’s her best friend Kaitlin. Sharon is (mostly) straight, but could Kaitlin be the man of her dreams? Years after Kaitlin wrote those emails, the two friends sit down to talk about them and what they meant. They ask each other the questions that have always been beneath the surface of their friendship. This episode was originally produced by Kaitlin Prest and Sharon Mashihi for the Love Letters episode of Audio Smut in 2014.
11/8/201620 minutes, 30 seconds
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For Helen

This episode is a rerun of Mouthwash, in honor of the late Helen Breger and all of our grandparents’ salacious histories. Produced by Samara Breger with The Heart.
10/18/201611 minutes, 58 seconds
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The Understudy

Sophie Townsend has been a widow for a year and a half. She is too busy taking care of her children to entertain the idea of dating, until a man compliments her shoes. Voicing by Andy Leonard. Produced by CBC’s Love Me with Sophie Townsend.
7/19/201612 minutes, 17 seconds
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Mr. Fix-it

A conversation between mother, Sophie Townsend and daughter, Anna about Mr. Fix-it, husband and father. Produced by Sophie Townsend and Marty Peralta for The Hearsay International Audio Festival.
7/5/20169 minutes, 59 seconds