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Episodes

/55/ High-Visibility Revolt ft. Aurélie Dianara

12/5/2018
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The 'gilets jaunes' protests have shocked France, expressing a profound exasperation and anger that goes much deeper than frustration at a fuel tax. This is clearly a movement from below, of the people. But it is leaderless and thus far rejects affiliation with political parties. How far can it go? Is Macron's government at risk? This isn't the 'start-up nation' he dreamed of... Readings: We're With The Rebels, by Aurélie Dianara (Jacobin)

Duration:00:52:50

/54/ Numbers Are Too Powerful ft. William Davies

11/21/2018
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We discuss Nervous States with its author: How has debate became so angery!1!! and fractious? Why don't we trust institutions any more -- or better, which institutions do we still trust and why? How has war increasingly encroached onto peace? And maybe believing in stats too much means that we now don't believe in anything... Readings: Nervous States (William Davies) Postscript on the Societies of Control (Gilles Deleuze)

Duration:01:02:48

/53/ Brexit's Hotel California

11/18/2018
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Theresa May's Brexit deal seems to have satisfied no one. Britain doesn't properly leave, nor does it stay, it just becomes a passive rule-taker. What are the prospects for the UK actually leaving? Will there be a second referendum? And does the difficulty in seeing through Brexit confirm that "there is no alternative"? Readings: The Full Brexit: for popular sovereignty, democracy and economic renewal Costas Lapavitsas: Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour vs. the Single Market

Duration:00:46:41

/52/ Duterte's Despotism ft. Nicole Curato

11/8/2018
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In which we learn of Duterte's promises of blood and how he's lived up to those promises. Is massacring drug user, dealers and anyone caught in the crossfire actually popular? How does violence fit in with his development model? Do elites back his rule - and which elites? And how does he compare to other far-right authoritarians? Readings: The Duterte Reader (ed. Nicole Curato) Nicole Curato in the NYT...

Duration:01:09:25

/51/ Oh, Brazil: What Now?

10/31/2018
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In which we update the latest from Brazil, post-election. What will Bolsonaro's government look like? We plot best & worst case scenarios and discuss how bad this really is (really, really bad). And is "fascism" the correct term to use? Readings: Bolsonaro Rising (Alex) https://thebaffler.com/latest/bolsonaro-rising-hochuli Bolsonaro: more dangerous than Trump (Alex)...

Duration:00:40:52

/50/ On The Market ft. Anna Khachiyan

10/25/2018
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In which we discuss (post)modern relationships: dating, narcissism and capitalism. Are we all scared of each other? Are we trying to quantify the interpersonal? What does #MeToo et al suggest about contemporary womanhood? Plus assorted stuff on Russophobia, fascism and anti-fascism, and how great Lana del Rey is. Readings: Christopher Lasch on narcissism: https://www.nybooks.com/articles/1976/09/30/the-narcissist-society The Last Psychiatrist:...

Duration:00:53:42

/49/ Kids & Confessions ft. Amber A'Lee Frost

10/11/2018
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In which we talk to Amber about the limitations of liberal feminism and why socialism is better (duh). Personal trauma as a form of political argumentation is critiqued. And we debate the unfashionable topic of parenting and families. Maybe, beyind so much beyond subcultural squabbling and posturing on the Left, is actually a deep-rooted individualism. So we discuss how to get beyond that. Readings: Confession Booth: https://thebaffler.com/salvos/confession-booth-frost Daddy Issues:...

Duration:00:44:37

/48/ Ultra-Politics in Brazil ft. Sabrina Fernandes

10/3/2018
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Special episode in partnership with Jacobin: Brazil election preview - democracy at stake. Who is Bolsonaro and why should Bolsonaro be understood as a neofascist? We discuss the #EleNão feminist resistance and the backdrop of 'antipetismo'. How has the political centre and the middle class so easily swung over to vote for such an extremist? The notion of 'ultra-politics' is explained and we look at what might happen should Bolsonaro win - and should he lose. Readings: Essential Chomsky...

Duration:00:50:58

/47/ Woke Consumerism

9/13/2018
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In which we ask whether political consumerism is still a thing. We chart its course from 90s Adbusters-style anti-branding, to 2000s ethical consumerism, through to today's woke outrage economy. Has commodification and cynicism overwhelmed all consumer activism? Plus, we catch up with election results from Sweden and look forward to next month's Brazilian elections. Readings: Adbusted https://jacobinmag.com/2013/10/adbusted The Philanthropy Racket...

Duration:00:55:26

/46/ Exiting Capitalist Realism

8/30/2018
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The third in our Neoliberal Breakdown series. In which we discuss the late Mark Fisher's Capitalist Realism, 10 years on. Does his analysis still hold? The mood music of the time - the age of 'TINA' and the end of history - was acutely described by Fisher. But did it only really describe Britain? And has the world now entered a new period? Readings: Capitalist Realism http://www.zero-books.net/books/capitalist-realism 'Exiting the Vampire Castle'...

Duration:00:28:20

/45/ Liberalism: A Counter-Podcast

8/16/2018
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In which we discuss the work of the late Domenico Losurdo, especially his brilliant Liberalism: A Counter-History. Part of an ongoing series on the contradictions of liberalism, we debate whether Losurdo is right to point to liberalism's complicity with slavery, racism and colonialism. Why were arguments for self-rule often accompanied by justifications for slavery? Why were some liberal abolitionist arguments in favour of despotism? We tie these discussions into contemporary paradoxes of...

Duration:00:29:27

/44/ Neoliberal Order Breakdown Syndrome (N.O.B.S.)

8/9/2018
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In which we lay the liberal establishment down on the shrink's sofa. It's a systematic analysis of liberal derangement: of the inability to accept, explain, or respond to the breakdown of the current order. Why can't the liberal establishment accept that the 2008 crisis would eventually have political consequences? Why can't liberals explain why they keep losing? Why can't they offer anything but more of the same? Symptoms:

Duration:01:08:59

/43/ City Struggles ft. Ben Bradlow / David Adler

7/17/2018
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In which we ask why the urban question become so pointed today - in the Global North as well as in the South? We look at contestation in urban politics - in São Paulo, Johannesburg, London, New York, and beyond. What are the social movement struggles around housing, rent, transport, and the right to the city? What are the limits to housing & transport politics -- are they just consumer movements at the end of the day? Guests: David Adler talks to us about rent in London and beyond.Ben...

Duration:00:55:20

/42/ Erdogan Ever-Present? ft. Yasemin Yilmaz

7/4/2018
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In which we survey Turkey's election results in light of five years of tumult - Gezi, economic downturn, terrorist attacks, Syrian war, coup, repression. Are cracks beginning to show for Erdogan? He teamed up with ultranationalists, while opposition secularists and Islamists joined forces, but Erdogan held on. How demoralised are the Turkish people, and what are the prospects for the Left? We conclude by debating whether Erdogan represents a generalisable type of political leader today:...

Duration:00:45:46

/41/ The Colombian Exception ft. Pablo Medina Uribe

6/27/2018
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In which we discuss how the Right won this month's election -- in a country that has never seen the Left in power. Is Colombia an exception? The civil war there feels like part of the Cold War that forgot to end. We discuss the fragile peace, the militarisation of politics, and drug cartels.

Duration:00:47:19

/40/ Centrists Are the Bad Guys ft. David Adler

6/20/2018
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In which we try to understand why it's not the extremes, but the centre, that has given up on democracy. David Adler talks to us about his research, and we learn about the centrist tribes: elites, anti-elite populists, and the apathetic. We talk about how we think about political space and what 'moderate' really means... maybe that horeshoe needs to be turned upside down? Readings: David Adler in the New York Times:...

Duration:01:17:50

/39/ Geopolitics of the World Cup ft. Karl Sharro & Euan Marshall

6/13/2018
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In which we talk about the politics of hosting the World Cup + the sublots & intrigues that will animate the tournament: hot and cold wars, Salah's revenge, Brazil after the 7-1. Featuring lots of hating on Sergio Ramos.

Duration:02:03:28

/38/ The Economics of Exit ft. Thomas Fazi

5/31/2018
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In which we discuss why the Left should not to be scared of sovereignty: Brexit, Italexit, and Modern Monetary Theory

Duration:01:01:19

/37/ The Ghosts of May '68 ft. Catherine Liu

5/16/2018
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In which we unpick the legacies of 1968 and all that: political fragmentation, the loss of authority, the cult of youth.

Duration:01:05:07

/36/ Portugal: The Soft Whip? ft. Catarina Príncipe

5/2/2018
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In which we debate whether Portugal really represents an alternative to austerity

Duration:01:23:59