Podcast Archive - Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

Practical Criticism No. 47—Nirvana

In episode 47 of the Podcast for Social Research’s “Practical Criticism” series, Ajay Singh Chaudhary plays Nirvana for Rebecca Ariel Porte. They talk pop avant-gardes, Kurt Cobain’s voice, exhausted croons, experiments in sound, experiments in masculinity, depression and melancholy, Burton’s anatomy of melancholy, developing variation, word play, disillusion and disaffection, and Nirvana's Gen X musical legacy in the sonic avant-garde and depressive realism of the (largely feminine and queer) singer-songer writers of today. Songs include: "Smells Like Teen Spirit"; "The Priest They Called Him" by Kurt Cobian and William S. Burroughs; "Pennyroyal Tea"; "All Apologies" and Mitski's "Your Best American Girl."

The Podcast for Social Research

From Plato to quantum physics, Walter Benjamin to experimental poetry, Frantz Fanon to the history of political radicalism, The Podcast for Social Research is a crucial part of our mission to forge new, organic paths for intellectual work in the twenty-first century: an ongoing, interdisciplinary series featuring members of the Institute, and occasional guests, conversing about a wide variety of intellectual issues, some perennial, some newly pressing. Each episode centers on a different topic and is accompanied by a bibliography of annotations and citations that encourages further curiosity and underscores the conversation’s place in a larger web of cultural conversations.

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Practical Criticism No. 48—Björk

In episode 48 of the Podcast for Social Research’s “Practical Criticism” series, Rebecca Ariel Porte plays Björk for Ajay Singh Chaudhary, who, as usual, does not know beforehand what the object of the week will be. They converse about pop avant-gardes, Bruegel’s *Land of Cockaigne,* utopian fantasies of Iceland, islands and the insular, the state […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 48: Christine Smallwood’s The Life of the Mind

In the 48th episode of the Podcast for Social Research, BISR faculty (and co-founder) Christine Smallwood joins Abby Kluchin, Rebecca Ariel Porte, Ajay Singh Chaudhary, Michael Stevenson, and Suzanne Schneider for a wide-ranging discussion of her acclaimed debut novel The Life of the Mind. In a two-part conversation, Christine first sits down with Abby to […]

Practical Criticism No. 41—One Big Country Song

In episode 41 of the Podcast for Social Research’s “Practical Criticism” series, Ajay Singh Chaudhary plays Locash for Rebecca Ariel Porte, who has no idea what the object of the week will be. They discuss pop country, meta-country, bro country, bubblegum country, crossover appeal, national imaginaries, projections of unity and masculinity, David Allan Coe, Lady […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 47: Who Needs a Worldview? Raymond Geuss in Conversation

What is a worldview? Why do people so often resort to worldview thinking? What is the alternative? In episode 47 of the Podcast for Social Research, philosopher Raymond Geuss joins Ajay Singh Chaudhary, Michael Stevenson, and Rebecca Ariel Porte to discuss his most recent book Who Needs a Worldview? (Harvard). Among the points considered: why […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 46: At Year’s End with the Angel of History–2020 in Review

Ajay Singh Chaudhary, Lygia Sabbag Fares, Michael Stevenson, Rebecca Ariel Porte, and Suzanne Schneider look back on 2020 in cultural objects: what artifacts from the catastrophe of history lingered with them and which will they be salvaging for the coming year? Discussion ranges over children’s media,  experimental performances of Beethoven, sourdough, samba-canção, Sianne Ngai, Spiritfarer and Deathstranding, Robert […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 45: Empire and Capital

On Thursday and Friday, October 22nd and 23rd, BISR, along with numerous partners, conducted a two-day teach-in and symposium, Empire in Crisis, dedicated to exploring the scope, function, and possible futures of U.S. imperialism. The 45th episode of the Podcast for Social Research is a recording of Friday’s introductory teach-in session: “Empire and Capital: Policing […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 44: The Overdetermined Election

The 2020 U.S. presidential election is often called “the most important” of our lifetime. It may also be the most overdetermined. In episode 44 of the Podcast for Social Research, BISR’s Ajay Singh Chaudhary, Asma Abbas, Nara Roberta Silva, Alyssa Battistoni and Cora Walters discuss the 2020 presidential election and place it in historical, global, […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 43: A Short Course in Neoliberalism

On June 25th and 26th, 2020, in response to the protests convulsing the nation in the wake of the racist killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd, among countless others, BISR conducted a two-day teach-in, free and open to the public, in which faculty explored issues and concepts that contextualize the crisis of […]

Podcast for Social Research, Episode 42: Racial Capitalism

On June 25th and 26th, 2020, in response to the protests convulsing the nation in the wake of the racist killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd, among countless others, BISR conducted a two-day teach-in, free and open to the public, in which faculty explored issues and concepts that contextualize the crisis of […]