The Podcast for Social Research, Episode 1

This is the first episode of our podcast series, “The Podcast for Social Research.” It is divided into two parts. The first part is an introduction followed by discussion of various goings-on of the faculty of the Brooklyn Institute, ranging from books we’ve been reading and concerts we’ve attended to reflections on current affairs and everything in between. The second part (which begins at around 01:07:00) is a round table discussion of the recently released film, “A Dangerous Method.” What you have here is not only an explanation of this episode but also contains about all of the “script” we had for it.

For a group of academics, producing a spontaneous, largely unplanned document is a lot like jumping into the middle of the ocean without a life preserver. It provokes a great deal of anxiety and doesn’t seem at all like what one is supposed to do. In many ways the mark of our profession is the careful, painstaking attention to detail, accuracy and citation. And yet, we decided to produce this podcast for our first collective project as the Brooklyn Institute. This was a decision we made quite consciously as part of our stated mission to move scholarly discourse beyond the literal and figurative walls of the academy. The podcast and the blog post are both highly popular and accessible media that give us new opportunities for communication and conversation, among ourselves and with anyone out there listening. There are definitely advantages and disadvantages to both. Podcasting lets us engage in a long form, largely unrestrained exchange of ideas that is mostly free flowing but simultaneously documented for further reflection, dissemination and analysis. It also leaves us occasionally quite unable to recall an exact quotation, statistic or reference. This is scary stuff. I personally completely misidentified a street corner in the Bronx. I consider this a cardinal sin for a New Yorker. These are the pitfalls and stumbling blocks along the way to creating something that – we hope – can be an interesting, enjoyable and encouraging document, a truly interdisciplinary group work.

We talked after we finished recording about how to supplement the podcast with something else, not quite a “bibliography,” nor exactly a “for further reading,” and certainly not an exhaustive, encyclopedic set of citations. We are calling this section, simply, “Notations.” The structure of the Notations section is part by design and part through necessity. One of the advantages of blogging and the free WordPress theme we use is that it makes most of what we write on the site look – at least in our opinions – passably aesthetically pleasing. One of the disadvantages is that it is very limiting in terms of how many characters we can fit on a line and how much we can control spacing, making a standard MLA or Chicago style bibliography more or less impossible. There goes that life preserver again.  One of the advantages is that we can take advantage of all the vast content on the Internet through hyperlinks that are easily and quickly accessible. These Notations are intended not only as a supplement but also, hopefully, as an invitation. They are arranged in chronological order according to their appearance in the podcast, such that if your curiosity is piqued, your sentiment outraged or your reason offended, you may consult the works in question. Some are a click away, and can lead to another whole universe of hyperlinked texts. Others may require older technologies such as libraries and/or bookstores. Please do not hesitate to contact us via email or Twitter with questions, comments, or suggestions for future podcasts. We are certainly not permanently wedded to the current structure of either the podcast itself or the Notations. Both will almost certainly adapt and evolve. I know I reference a few books constantly; do they really need to be referenced each show in a supplemental section? Probably not. What to do instead? Open question. Our faculty and audience are invited to use the comment section to add their own reflections on both the form of the podcast, the Notations, and, of course, the actual content. Ask questions, if you like. Fill in gaps, if you want. Pose challenges, if the spirit moves you. But mostly, we hope you enjoy the podcast and that we manage to provoke a thought or two.

– Ajay Singh Chaudhary, Director

(You can download here by right clicking and “save as” or look us up on iTunes)

The Podcast for Social Research, Episode 1


Part I: 00:00:00 – (Music: “Stillwell Ave.” by El Diablo Robotico)

00:00:24 – On Murakami, the Kindle, Large Books, Kafka, Translation, Ultra-Marathons

Haruki Murakami. IQ84, Norwegian Wood, A Wild Sheep Chase,What I Talk About When I Talk About Running
Neal Stephenson. Reamde

00:10:45 – On Lyrical Ballads, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Subways

Samuel Coleridge and William Wordsworth. Lyrical Ballads
Samuel Coleridge. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
The Rolling Stones. “Sympathy for the Devil”

00:13:40 – On Occupy Wall Street, Horizontalism, Anarchy, Democracy, Violence

Hannah Arendt. Crises of the Republic
More on Adorno and 1968
John Dewey and Jane Addams. (various places, on “socializing democracy”)

00:23:00 – On Various Patriotisms, Disenfranchisement, Political Action, Pedagogy 

The Pogues. “The Body of an American” via The Wire (David Simon, Ed Burns, et al.)
John Dewey
. Democracy and Education: an Introduction to the Philosophy of Education
Ali Mirsepassi. Political Islam, the Enlightenment, and Iran

More on Supply Side Economics and The Laffer Curve (Editor’s note: I desperately did not want to link to wikipedia forvarious reasons but simply could not find better links in clear language, not behind pay walls. I am happy to replace them if any listener has a suggestion. Supply Side Economics is completely crazy.)

00:35:00 – On Violence and State Power

Video of the UC Davis Incident
Michael Bloomberg on the NYPD as his own army
Thomas Jefferson. “Letter to William Smith, Paris, Nov. 13, 1787”
Caleb Crain. “IPhones vs. the Police”
Bob Kane and Will Finger
. Batman

00:43:00 – On the Police and the Personal

Thomas Hobbes. Leviathan
The Posse Comitatus Act (law against use of military as police)
Half Life 2 (by Valve)
Norman Mailer. Armies of the Night
Video of OWS and Journalism Incident in the Bronx
Occupy Our Homes
 (Editor’s note: Yes, they’re still there.12/15/2011)
Shahin Nasiripour and Ryan Grim. “Who Owns Your Mortgage?”
Albor Ruiz. “Whole World Watches City’s Shameful Response to Occupy Wall Street”
Adam Smith. The Wealth of Nations

00:55:40 – On John Zorn, Aesthetics, and Epistemic Humility

John Zorn Composer Portrait. Miller Theater, Dec. 9, 2011
Theodor Adorno. “On Jazz”
Theodor Adorno. The Philosophy of Modern Music
Plato. The Republic
Exodus. 33:18-23

01:07:20 – BREAK! (Music: “Shear-Jashub” composed by John Zorn)

Notations to Part II:

Part II:

01:07:50 – On A Dangerous Method, Freud, Jung, Sabina Spielrein, the Unconscious, Psychoanalysis, Jews and Judaism, Aryans and Christianity, Morality, Sexuality

Sigmund Freud and Josef Breuer. Studies on Hysteria
Sigmund Freud. The Interpretation of Dreams
Sigmund Freud. Beyond the Pleasure Principle
Peter Gay. Freud: a Life for Our Time

01:16:18 – SPOILERS (from here on out), All Topics Continued

Lisa Appignanesi and John Forrester. Freud’s Women
Richard WagnerDer Ring des Nibelungen
Carl Jung. The Red Book
Carl Jung. “Wotan”
Claude Levi-Strauss. Structural Anthropology
Sigmund Freud. Civilization and its Discontents
Walter Benjamin. The Arcades Project
Michel Foucault. The History of Sexuality: Vol. 1
Yosef Yerushalmi. Freud’s Moses (Editor’s note: Interested readers may also want to consult Jacques Derrida‘s Archive Fever which is in part a response to Yerushalmi’s text.)

02:01:10 – Psychoanalysis, Analytic Philosophy, Ideology, Agency

Daniel Dennett. Consciousness Explained
Louis Althusser. Lenin and Philosophy
Louis Althusser. Writings on Psychoanalysis
Fredric Jameson. The Political Unconscious

Technical Details: Recorded on a Samson CO1U into an msi PC running the beta version of the freeware program Audacity 1.3.13 while consuming enjoyable, yet moderate, amounts of Buffalo Trace bourbon and Sixpoint Sweet Action beer.

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