Theory on the Radio

Mathew NYC Gallery
46 Canal St, #2 (RING BUZZER)
New York, NY 10002

The introduction of the radio was a watershed in the history of human communication. As the means of widely transmitting sound, the radio not only massively multiplied listenership, but also inaugurated new sonic styles and content—recontexualizing familiar sounds, creating markets for new sounds, and reshaping social notions of art, sport, entertainment, politics, and knowledge. In Theory on the Radio, a live radio broadcast, BISR faculty Raphaele Chappe, Rebecca Ariel Porte, and Ajay Singh Chaudhary will draw on economics, poetry, pop music, and Walter Benjamin (whose radio play “The Mississippi Flood of 1927” we’ll read) to examine the history, aesthetics, politics, and potentialities of radio. What are the economics of radio, and why is it the model for all subsequent mass media? What connects modern poetry to pop music? How, in Benjamin’s conception, do natural, technological, and social phenomena relate? Is there a critical theory of the radio?

Theory on the Radio will take place Sunday, July 29th, from 1-4pm (and be broadcast simultaneously on WGXC and Wave Farm). The event is part of the Montez at Mathew Summer Program, a 750-hour continuous radio broadcast featuring artists, writers, scholars, storytellers, and musicians.

Theory on the Radio Livestream:

Stream presented in partnership with Wave Farm Radio


  • Raphaële Chappe

    Raphaële Chappe holds a PhD in Economics from The New School for Social Research, an LL.M from New York University School of Law, a Master’s degree in Comparative Business Law from the University of Pantheon-Sorbonne in Paris, France, and an LL.B in Law and French Law from King’s College London. Her research interests include the link between financial markets and wealth inequality; political economy and the history of economic thought; and the philosophical foundations of microeconomics.

  • Ajay Singh Chaudhary

    Ajay Singh Chaudhary is the executive director of the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research and a core faculty member specializing in social and political theory. His research focuses on social and political theory, Frankfurt School critical theory, political economy, media, religion, and post-colonial studies. He has written for the The Guardian, Los Angeles Review of Books, Quartz, Social Text, Dialectical Anthropology, The Jewish Daily Forward, Filmmaker Magazine, and 3quarksdaily, among other venues. Ajay is currently writing a book on the politics of climate change.

  • Rebecca Ariel Porte

    Rebecca Ariel Porte holds a Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her research, which centers on nineteenth- and twentieth-century movements in British and American poetry, concentrates on crossings between early analytic philosophy and modern theories of poetics and aesthetics. Reviews and essays have appeared in the Boston Review, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and io9, among other publications.

Event Schedule

Sunday, 1-4pm
July 29, 2018


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