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In this episode of The Atlas Obscura Podcast, author, astrophysicist, folklorist, and science communicator Moiya McTier guides Dylan through the galaxy. Along the way she reveals why she loves space so much, how folklore helps people understand things bigger than themselves, and the origins of her award-winning book, Milky Way: An Autobiography of Our Galaxy.

MORE: If this conversation has you thinking about space and mythology, Moiya will be teaching a facts-based fictional world-building course online with us starting May 14. Use code GALAXY20 at signup to get 20 percent off the class when you sign up here.

Our podcast is an audio guide to the world’s wondrous, awe-inspiring, strange places. In under 15 minutes, we’ll take you to an incredible site, and along the way you’ll meet some fascinating people and hear their stories. Join us daily, Monday through Thursday, to explore a new wonder with cofounder Dylan Thuras and a neighborhood of Atlas Obscura reporters.

Artist's impression of the Milky Way.
Artist’s impression of the Milky Way. NASA/JPL-Caltech/ESO/R. Hurt/Public Domain