a philosophy podcast from zero books
Zero Squared #16: Drink the Rest of That
April 22, 2015 02:33 PM PDTGuy J Jackson is the guest this week and we discuss his collection of short stories Drink the Rest of That which came out from Roundfire Books in January. Roundfire Books is an imprint at John Hunt Publishing as is Zero Books. Drink the Rest of That is a collection of shorts meant to be read “at a rate of one per day in order to feel Zen for however many days that there are stories, or so claimed Roundfire Book's late editorial assistant, Nils Samuels Chastain, even thought it wasn't his place to decide that.” Nathan Penlington is the author of “Roadkill on the Digitial Highway” and a drinking buddy with Guy. He blurbed the collection as follows: Imagine if a Kurt Vonnegut/Richard Brautigan hybrid had written The Phantom Tollbooth and you are somewhat close to the uniqueness of this book. Drink The Rest of That is a dazzling, heartbreaking, laugh-a-loud collection that will leave you wanting more. I'm having a difficult time imagining such a creature myself. It sounds like something out of a Cronenberg movie. It's Wednesday, April 22nd 2015 and I'm Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast. In this episode you’ll hear a Christopher Knowles poem as recited by Robert Wilson, a Philip Glass style improvization by the youtube star Torley, train sounds and an excerpt from Paul Simon's song Ordinary Child from his Rhythm of the Saints which was the album I listened to on my Realistic brand Walkman when I first travelled by train from Colorado Springs to Portland Oregon back in 1991. The music you're listening to right now is the Soweto String Quartet's tribute to Paul Simon's Graceland, but in just a moment you'll be listening to Guy Jackson and I discuss why you should drink that. Zero Squared #15: Twerking to Turking (EDA)
April 15, 2015 10:36 PM PDTAlfie Bown is the guest this week and we discuss the book from the EDA Collective Twerking to Turking which is coming from Zero Books this month. With the tag line: “Analysing the signs of everyday life” this is the second collection by the EDA. It is a follow-up to their book “Why Animals are funny.” Jamie Mackay, writing for Review 31, praised the EDA, writing: It is not often that theory is this fun to read, and less often still that satire is so well versed in the language of its assailants. It's Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 and I'm Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast. In this episode you’ll hear a longish clip from Radiolab on the subject of Yellow Rain. The podcast was originally aired on September 24th, 2012, and I'll provide links to it in the show notes. If you go to the site you'll find an apology from Robert Krulwich wherein he apologizes for the way he aggressively questioned the Mr Eng Yang regarding reports that “yellow rain” was used on people in Laos after American forces left Vietnam. I want to make clear that, in my opinion, Robert Krulwich should not have apologized. If the oppressed of the Earth are going to find a voice that matters they will, simultaneously, have to be open to the truth and to pursuing the truth. This will require transcending their own experiences even as they act in their own collective interest. You'll also hear clips of Philip Glass's Photographer, an excerpt from a documentary about Audrey Hepburn entitled “World's Most Photographed Woman,” the comedian Godfrey Chi, Phlearn Photoshop's “The Basics of Studium and Punctum in Photographs,” and "Got a Good Thing Going" by the Beetletown Players and Mister Show. Zero Squared #14: Nihilism and Reason
April 08, 2015 09:18 AM PDTEugene Thacker is the guest this week and we discuss his Horror of Philosophy series, two new volumes of which ( Tentacles Longer than Night and Starry Speculative Corpse) are coming from Zero Books on April 24th. In these book Thacker, instead of taking fiction as the mere illustration of ideas, he reads horror stories as if they themselves were works of philosophy. The horror author Thomas Ligotti praised Thacker’s first volume, In The Dust of this Planet. He wrote: Thacker's discourse on the intersection of horror and philosophy is utterly original and utterly captivating...In the Dust of This Planet is an encyclopedic grimoire instructing us in the varieties of esoteric thought and infernal diversions that exist for the reader’s further investigation, treating us to a delightful stroll down a midway of accursed attractions that alone are worth the ticket of this volume. In this episode you’ll hear a clip from the Laverne and Shirley, Rick and Morty, Rick Roderick, Bryan Magee and Bernard Williams on Descartes, Laurie Anderson, Kraftwerk, a reading from the Gideon bible, the theme from True Detective, and the opening music from Mister Show. Zero Squared #13: Heavy Radicals
April 01, 2015 01:42 PM PDTAaron Leonard is the guest this week and we discuss his book Heavy Radicals which was published by Zero Books in February. With the subtile: The FBI's Secret War on America's Maoists, Aaron Leonard's book covers Maoism in America from the 60s through to 1980. Sarah Khan at the Washington Book Review praised the book. “Heavy Radicals is an excellent addition to the literature on the history of revolutionary groups which played important roles in the 1960s and 1970s. It is the first comprehensive and complete history of ... the Revolutionary Union. It is a well-researched book which fills the gap created by the absence of historical literature on an important period in the history of the United States.” In this episode you’ll hear a clips from Bob Avakian, the American propaganda film “What is Communism,” the 1963 instrumental hit Pipeline by the Chantays, Mario Savio at Sproul Hall in 1964, Andrew Kliman, a String Quartet cover of Jefferson Airplane's “White Rabbit” and the aria “I am the wife of Mao Tse-Tung” from John Adam's opera Nixon in China as well as John Adams' “The Chairman Dances.” Zero Squared #12: Rebel Rebel
March 25, 2015 01:14 PM PDTChris O'Leary is the guest this week and we discuss his book Rebel Rebel which is coming from Zero Books in two days. With the tag line: “Every single song. Everything you want to know, everything you didn't know” the book catalogs all of Bowie's songs from 1964 through 1976. The Cultural Critic Mark Dery (author of All the Young Dudes:Why Glam Rock Matters) sent me a blurb for O'Leary and I'll read it now: Marooned in '70s suburbia, I and countless weirdos like me awaited every new Bowie record as a deep-space ping from a world where weird ruled—proof that there really was life on Mars, if not in tract-home sprawl. To date, what passes for thoughtful inquiry into the polymorphous, polyvalent phenomenon that is David Bowie has consisted almost entirely of potted biographies and coffee-table photo albums. At last, the Homo Superior gets the exegesis he deserves: Rebel Rebel is the Lipstick Traces of Bowie studies, and Chris O'Leary its unchallenged dean. I should also point out that you can win a copy of O'Leary's book by entering the fictional Bowie lyric contest at DavidBowieNews.com, and I'll put a link to that in the show notes. In this episode you’ll hear a clip from the Chris Hadfield on the International Space Station, a clip of a cover of Kim Wilyde's The Kids in America done by Nirvana, David Bowie with Bing Crosby from Bing Crosby's Merrie Olde Christmas, an Andy Warhol/David Bowie interview juxtaposition and Bowie's Warszawa played on a Minimoog by the youtube star orchestron. Announcement: Your Podcast isn't here
March 21, 2015 02:07 PM PDT
Please check out the new Double Feature Review podcast over at douglaslain.com. Jim Farris and I review and argue about Cary Grant's films His Girl Friday and Mister Blanding Builds his Dream House.
This podomatic feed is being slowly retired, but new podcasts are coming. Please do check them out.Zero Squared #11: Marxist Entertainment
March 17, 2015 10:18 PM PDTAndrew Kliman is the guest this week and we discuss his essay at the New Left Project entitled “Harvey Versus Marx On Capitalism’s Crises Part 1: Getting Marx Wrong.” The Harvey in this essay is the prominent Marxist Geographer David Harvey and not Harvey the rabbit, just in case you're wondering. It's Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 and I'm Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast. In the last week or so I've talked to several Zero Authors including Chris O'Leary (author of Rebel Rebel) and Eugene Thacker (author of In the Dust of this Planet, Starry Speculative Corpse, and Tentacles Longer than Night). In the weeks to come I hope to talk to Aaron Leonard (co-author of Heavy Radicals: The FBIs secret war on American Maoists) as well as Daniela Cascella (author of Footnotes, Mirages, Refrains and Leftovers of Writing Sound), Robert Jackson (author of Bioshock) and many, many others. In this episode you’ll be hearing clips from the Big Chill, Slavoj Zizek, Brendan Cooney, Nirvana and the Piano Cat, a clip from Tom O'Brien's interview with Thom Workman, the history of cell phone commercials, and an instrumental version of a Whiter Shade of Pale. Right now you're listening to the theme from Groucho Marx's “You Bet Your Life” but in just a moment you'll be listening to Brendan Cooney explaining the Declining Rate of Profit and then you'll hear Andrew Kliman and I discuss Marxist Entertainment. Zero Squared #10: Night of the World
March 11, 2015 09:30 AM PDTFrank Smecker is the guest this week and we discuss his book Night of the World which came out from Zero Books in 2014. Todd McGowan (author of Enjoying What We Don't Have: The Political Project of Psychoanalysis) blurbed the book. He wrote: Night of the World seamlessly weaves through complex philosophical conjunctions and cultural practices in order to articulate a theory of ideology for today's world. From the Jacket: By situating objectivity at the level of ideology, while placing it within a dynamic, experimental and, at times, unorthodox interplay with Hegelian and Lacanian philosophy, The Night of the World offers a unique and radical re-thinking of objectivity. Encompassing a constellational array of wide-ranging subjects, from popular culture, politics, history, science, and philosophy, while deploying an engaging prose that is both incisive and seamlessly tangential, Smecker is both an ally with, and emerging voice in, the field of Zizekian dialectics. Incorporating Zizek's philosophy, Smecker speculates over both objectivity and ideology, evoking methods of thought not so prevalent since German Idealism was all the rage. In the spirit of Kierkegaard, The Night of the World is the result of an imaginative hypothesis. And that is only the half of it. Written in a style that will undoubtedly leave the reader itching to read it again once finished, The Night of the World is an ongoing engagement with an abundance of additional postulations, whose sole purpose is to produce more products of thought. In this episode you’ll be hearing from Chad African, Doctor Who, Wolfman Jack, Richard Dreyfus, the cast of the pilot episode of Star Trek (including Leonard Nimoy as an emotional seeming Spock), and Nik Walton's improvized loop Diggin Dug. Your New Podcast Isn't Here
March 05, 2015 10:18 PM PST
Please check out the new Double Feature Review podcast over at douglaslain.com. Jim Farris and I review and rant about Bobby Deerfield and Thunder Alley, two race car movies from the seventies and the sixties respectively. And if you're looking for the new Diet Soap Audio Collage Podcast, you'll find that next week at douglaslain.com.
This podomatic feed is being slowly retired, but new podcasts are coming. Please do check them out.Zero Squared #9: Magic Tricks and the Big Other
March 03, 2015 10:41 PM PSTPeter Rollins is the guest this week and we discuss his book The Divine Magician: The Disappearance of Religion and the Discovery of Faith which came out from Howard Books, an imprint of Simon and Schuster, in January of this year (2015). Rob Bell, the author of Velvet Elvis, blurbed the book this way: What Pete does in this book is take you to the edge of a cliff where you can see how high you are and how far you would fall if you lost your footing. And just when most writers would kindly pull you back from the edge, he pushes you off, and you find yourself without any solid footing, disoriented, and in a bit of a panic...until you realize that your fall is in fact, a form of flying. And it's thrilling. The two new titles from Zero Books this month are Rebel Rebel by Chris O’Leary and No More Heroes by Carl Neville. Chris O’Leary will be on the podcast in two weeks to discuss that Space Oddity who is known as David Bowie and there is also going to be a contest at davidbowienews.com. I'll let you know about that and how you might win a free copy of the book in the weeks to come. I want to mention the passing of Leonard Nimoy. As some of you might know I've been working on a book about Star Trek and Hegel's approach to the dialectic for a couple of years now, or more accurately I've not been working on it. The original title of that book was “Star Trek is the true religion.” I'm saddened by the passing of Leonard Nimoy. I feel similarly to how I felt when Johnny Carson died, only more so. In a way the death of Leonard Nimoy is like the death of Ronald McDonald. It feels like something that wasn't supposed to happen. In this episode you’ll be hearing from a youtube magician, a clip from the David Fincher movie The Game, from the Woody Allen movie The Purple Rose of Cairo, from a lecture by the death of God theologian Thomas Altizer, from Late Nite from David Letterman, and from the album Mister Spock's Music from Outer Space, but in just a moment you'll be hearing Peter Rollins and I discuss Magic Tricks and The Big Other.
Zero Squaredis a philosophy podcast from Zero Books. Zero publishes radical philosophy, aesthetics, film theory, experimental fiction, and anything else that smells faintly of the avant-garde. Our books aim not only to demonstrate how philosophical ideas are relevant to every day life, but also to change the terms of it. Douglas Lain is the host of this podcast and the publisher of Zero Books. He hosted the Diet Soap podcast out of this feed for five years. Jasun Horsley is a regular contributor to Zero Squared providing audio commentaries from his "liminalist corner." Zero Squared will continue the tradition of Diet Soap while giving Zero Books authors a chance to talk about their work.
Douglas Lain is the publisher of zero books. He is also a novelist and podcaster. His novel “Billy Moon” tells the story of Christopher Robin Milne’s fictional involvement with the French general strike in May of 1968, and was published by Tor Books in 2013.
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