Pop the Left #10: From Henry Flynt to an Electric Ant

This month’s Pop the Left features a conversation about Henry Flynt’s lecture “An Autopsy of the Left.” The conversation, as is typical, wanders, and in the end Varn and I end up mentioning the difficulty of escaping from our current ideology.

Henry Flynt is a musician, a member of Fluxus, and the last Communist standing. I wrote to him and asked him onto the podcast, but this email met with scorn and ridicule, which was really too bad. If you know Henry Flynt please tell him that I did not mean to insult him when I called him a commie.

For your edification here is a definition of Fluxus as lifted from wikipedia:

Fluxus—a name taken from a Latin word meaning “flow, flux” (noun); “flowing, fluid” (adj.)[1]—is an international network of artists, composers and designers noted for blending different artistic media and disciplines in the 1960s. They have been active in Neo-Dada noise music and visual art as well as literature, urban planning, architecture, and design. Fluxus is sometimes described as intermedia.

In this episode you’ll here a song inspired by the Philip K. Dick story “The Electric Ant” and a clip from “The Thirteenth Floor.” Here’s an essay I wrote for Tor.com about both the short story and the movie.

Diet Soap Podcast #172: The Subject of Capitalism

The guest this week is the author and professor Jodi Dean. Professor Jodi Dean teaches political theory at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, NY, and she recently blogged about a chapter from Gilles Dauve and Francois Martin’s book The Eclipse and Re-Emergence of the Communist Movement. We discuss her blog entry and the book in this week’s episode.

It’s Wednesday, February 13th, 2013 and I’m Douglas Lain, the host of the Diet Soap podcast.

This week I want to thank Michael T and Brandon F for their one time donations to the podcast, and I want to urge everyone listening to follow me on Facebook and join the new Diet Soap International Facebook group. I also want to tell Shane and Michael P that I haven’t forgotten about sending copies of my dusty memoir Pick Your Battle your way.

Upcoming episodes of Diet Soap will include conversations with Jason Horsley, David Blacker, and my son Benjamin. Also a conversation with the primitivist John Zerzan is brewing for a future episode of Pop the Left.

The music you’re listening to is the Beethoven’s Ode to Joy played in tribute to the Late James DePreist, who was the music director for the Oregon Symphony from 1980 to 2003. James DePreist was a student of Leonard Bernstein’s and a Portland icon, and he died on February 8th this year. In just a moment you’ll be listening to Jodi Dean and I discuss The Subject of Capitalism. dietsoap172

Diet Soap Podcast #163: Life After Politics and the 2012 Election

The guests this week are Nicholas Pell and C Derick Varn. Pell is a freelance writer living in Los Angeles and Varn is an ex-pat University lecturer living in Jeonju, South Korea. These conversations were about what was then an upcoming US election and were meant to be used for the new podcast Pop the Left, however, given that the election has come and gone I’ve decided to edit this audio into a collection of short excerpts with the aim of expressing my mood more than any well formed idea.

It’s now Tuesday, November 13th, 2012, and I’m Douglas Lain the host of this podcast.

This Sunday there will be a follow-up conversation about this and last week’s episode on Talk Shoe. It’s scheduled for 11am Pacific and you’ll find a link to it in this week’s show notes. Also, over the next few days I’ll be putting up old episodes of Diet Soap onto the new feed at the request of a listener in China. So if you care to listen to these reruns you’ll hear Margaret Kimberley, Dennis Perrin, and Jodi Dean discuss the Occupy Wallstreet movement as they saw it about a year ago.

The music you’re listening to right now is Glenn Gould playing Arnold Schoenberg’s Suite Opus 25: Intermezzo, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Nicholas Pell, Derick Varn, and I as we discuss politics and life at the end of 2012.