Back in 2020, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry signed a deal to produce content for Spotify, but until now, there was only one podcast, a holiday special, that hit the platform. Now, the Duchess has posted the first show of her new weekly podcast titled “Archetypes.”
According to Spotify’s description of the podcast, “Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex dives into the labels that try to hold women back. During these intimate and candid conversations with guests from around the world we discover how these archetypes impact our everyday lives in ways big and small. With experts and historians, Meghan also uncovers how we got here in the first place – unearthing the origin of words such as ‘diva’, ‘slut’, ‘the B word’, ‘hysterical’, and many more, and asks the question: can we change this?”
The first episode of the podcast was just released today, and it features Serena Williams. This podcast episode is titled “The Misconception of Ambition with Serena Williams.”
During the podcast, Markle explained, “Over the course of the next dozen episodes, we’re going to live inside and rip apart the boxes women have been placed into for generations.”
On this first podcast, Markle talks to Williams, one of her close friends, about ambition and Williams’ announcement that she’s retiring from tennis.
When Markle asked Williams how she personally thinks of the word “ambition,” Williams responded, “I have to check myself because I’ve been so blinded by society.” She added, “Often women are definitely put in these different boxes when we are ambitious, or when we do have goals, or when we reach our goals it’s a negative connotation on how we reached the goals.”
Williams also talked about how fear can be gained through experience and sometimes that’s good while other times that’s bad. She explained, “I think fearlessness is super important. I think as you grow with the experience that you get, you think of it as a wound – if you burn yourself, obviously you don’t touch the fire again. So you’re learning behaviors that make you stop and that gives you this healthy fear – because there is a healthy fear and, you know, kind of like a godly fear as well. And it’s not a bad thing. It’s just a precaution that we need. And then we also, unfortunately, gain through our experience, some unhealthy fears.”
For example, Williams pointed out an article she read that described her as having a “meltdown” during a tennis match while meanwhile, they described a male tennis player as “passionate.” Markle jumped in to call the situation “a double standard.”
Dr. Laura Kray, an expert on gender in the workplace, also joined Markle’s podcast to talk about double standards. Dr. Kary explained, “As researchers, we run experiments and we give people scenarios of men versus women. We see that the identical behavior is rated more negatively when it is a woman than when it is a man. So an ambitious woman is power hungry, is manipulative, is not trusted, whereas an ambitious man is seen as, I want to emulate him. He’s a role model. He’s a captain of industry.”
Later in the podcast, Serena discussed her decision to retire from tennis, which she is calling an “evolution” instead of “retirement.” She explained, “I will never retire from something that you absolutely love. I will always have some sort of involvement. And it won’t be professionally, but I will always want to be involved in some way, shape or form in tennis. You know, obviously I’m retiring professionally, but it’s also an evolution. I’m doing more business things. And I really want to expand my family. And, you know, I’ve been putting it off for so long. And as a woman, there’s only so, so long you can put that off.”
Next week, Markle’s podcast will feature Mariah Carey. You can listen to her podcast here.
What do you think?