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Our first episode is from Paul Salmond, an expert on the Classics and Ancient History at La Trobe University, reading his essay 'Journeys to the underworld – Greek myth, film and American anxiety'. Wes Mountain CC-BY-ND, CC BY

The Conversation is launching a new podcast, Essays On Air. It’s the audio version of our Friday essays, where we bring you the best and most beautiful writing from Australian researchers.

In each 10 to 15 minute episode, we’ll read aloud fascinating, meticulously researched essays penned by academics who are experts in their fields.

These authors bring real knowledge, depth and love to the topics they unpack – and they write beautifully.

Our first episode is from Paul Salmond, Honorary Associate in Classics and Ancient History at La Trobe University, reading his essay Journeys to the underworld – Greek myth, film and American anxiety.

We’ll also be hearing a moving and deeply personal essay from Michael Adams, Associate Professor of Human Geography at the University of Wollongong, on the cultural meanings of horses.

Join us as we read to you here at Essays On Air, a new podcast from The Conversation.

Find us and subscribe in Apple Podcasts, in Pocket Casts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Additional music

Theme music: Snow by David Szesztay, Free Music Archive

Ambient Acoustic guitar by Stranger Eight, Freesound.org

Additional audio

McCarthyism in America (Youtube video)

Cosmician – Meadow, fly, horse, crickets

Paul Salmond’s audio track and Sunanda Creagh’s reading of Michael Adam’s essay on horses were both edited by Sarah Matthews.

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