Zero Squared #70: Overcoming Capitalism

A recording of the Zero Books panel “Overcoming Capitalism” from this year’s Left Forum replaces the usual interview this week. The panel participants were Terry Tapp author of “A Serf’s Journal,” the radical journalist Anne Jaclard, Andrew Kliman author of The Failure of Capitalist Production, Pete Dolack author of It’s Not Over and Douglas Lain publisher of Zero Books

There are a few announcements to make here at the start, some exciting developments. Zero Books’ own Mike Watson will be launching his book “Towards a Conceptual Militancy” this weekend. Mike will be in conversation with two contemporary art. Tomorrow, the 10th of June, at 1pm he’ll be talking to the video artist Fiamma Montezemolo at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, located on The Mall in the heart of central London. Then, on Sunday, he’ll be talking with Mark McGowan (AKA the Artist Taxi Driver) at the Open School East from 5pm to 630. The second event is free and you’ll be able to find links to both events in the show notes for this episode.

Also, Zero Books will be rolling out a membership site towards the end of this month. All the details are still be working out, but I can say that a Zero Books membership will get you access to members only podcasts, online workshops with our authors, and audiobooks. To find out more about what is happening at Zero Books you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or check out Zero Books blog at zero-books.net.

Finally, Zero Books authors will be reading in libraries this summer in an effort to promote both summer reading as a time for thinking as well as thrillers, celebrity gossip, and beaches.

If you enjoy Zero Squared please leave a review on iTunes, Stitcher, or wherever else fine podcasts are distributed. If you enjoy Zero Books you might recommend us to your local librarian. Let your library know about us, our website, our monthly newsletter announcing new titles, and urge them to include our books in their collection.

The music in this episode is the Bran Flakes’ Countdown to The End (Choo Choo Mix).

Zero Squared Special: A Reading in Defense of Zizek

Right before I jetted off to NYC to attend the Left Forum I’d edited a conversation with C Derick Varn for this week’s podcast. Upon my return I see that I made a mistake and saved the wrong file. So that podcast will be put off for a bit. Instead this week’s podcast is merely a reading of a blog post reporting on the Left Forum and the Zizek controversy.

This is entitled “Standing with Slavoj Žižek and Against an Illness on the Left” and it’s dedicated to Vakhtang, a fellow traveler and Lacanian who I know on FB and met for the first time in NYC. Cheers, Vakhtang. Let’s not let the PC police get us down.

In this episode you’ll hear a clip from the Left Forum and a clip from Slavoj Zizek’s appearance on the podcast Comedy Bang Bang!

Zero Squared Special: Left Forum Panel on Praxis

Theory, Practice and Praxis was the topic of the first Zero Books panel at the Left Forum last month and this week instead of an interview you’ll hear a recording of that panel. Thanks to Michael Steinberg and his crew/family for arriving with solid audio equipment and for putting up with the interruptions and heckling that came from the moderator. Thanks also to Chris Vitale for participating.

Here’s an Excerpt from the introduction:

There are many definitions of the word Praxis that get kicked around in Marxist circles and most of them are meaningless. Often enough the word is used to signify a half baked notion of a synthesis between theory and practice, touted as a solution for the problem of sterile or academic philosophy. The idea is that people put “theory” on a pedestal when really, as Marx argued, the aim shouldn’t be to merely interpret the world, but to change it. Praxis then is the realization of this necessity, it’s a word that is often spoken with the aim of elevating practice, a word deployed meant to bring the merely practical to the level of theory, when the true insight contained in the word is how utterly entwined theory and practice are from the start.

Michael Steinberg is the author of Enlightenment Interrupted and Chris Vitale is the author of Networkologies.