Peter Berard is a doctoral candidate in history at Boston College. He is also a writer for publications such as Jacobin and the LA Review of books. Berard and I discuss the Black Bloc and Antifa tactics in an effort to take a more sympathetic look at these anarchist tacticians, although the conversation here is not entirely uncritical.
Topics covered in this podcast include how we should go beyond the rigid definition of Fascism that comes from Trotsky and that was repeated by Brendan O’Neill on the punching Nazis podcast, the Kurt Vonnegut novel Mother Night, an now mostly defunct assessment of Milo Yiannopoulos’ career, and many other pertinent questions.
This is the 100th episode of the Zero Books podcast and my thanks goes out to Kevin Dole who sent me a congratulatory email. Kevin Dole is the inventor of Bizarro fiction, the author of Tangerinephant, and at this point, a long time friend.
Thanks goes out to members of the Zero Books Club. Zero Books Club members receive access to the Inside Zero Books which sometimes consists of unedited or full length interviews from the Zero Squared podcast, sometimes features conversations with Zero Books readers about the state of the left, and sometimes features public lectures from Zero Books authors or staff.
The music you’re listening to is a vaporwave version of Depeche Mode’s Enjoy the Silence, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Peter Berard and I discuss the ins and outs of Antifa.
Zero Squared: antifa black bloc brendan o'neill Fredrick DeBoer Free Speech Political Correctness punching Spiked Trump Women's March
Brendan O’Neill is the editor of Spiked Online, a publication that I would describe as having an attitude that is both socialist and libertarian in the American sense of the word. They advocate both expanding the range of human freedom and capitalist economic growth, despite being smart enough to know why capitalist economic growth can only occur when the mass of humanity is fettered.
Frederik DeBoer is a writer for publications such as Jacobin, the Observer, The Washington Post, Foreign Policy and other publications. He is a professor at Brooklyn College and describes himself as having conventionally leftist views. A socialist he is something of a mixer and has engaged in many twitter battles with (neo)liberals like Jonathan Chait and Sady Doyle.
This episode is something of a mash-up. It is the result of cutting down two interviews into a single polyphonous episode. Two otherwise disparate voices have been brought together here, not because they agree, but because they both have opinions and were willing to share them.
To underline the point further, let me say again, there are two people in this episode and two different opinions. DeBoer is the man with the American accent, O’Neill is the Brit.
It’s Wednesday, February 8th, 2017, and I’m Douglas Lain the publisher of Zero Books and the host of this podcast.
Thanks goes to members of the Zero Books club. Zero Books Club members receive access to the Inside Zero Books which sometimes consists of unedited or full length interviews from the Zero Squared podcast, sometimes features conversations with Zero Books readers about the state of the left, and sometimes features public lectures from Zero Books authors or staff.
The music you’re listening to right now is Smash Things Up by ¡TchKung!, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Brendan O’Neil and Frederik DeBoer.