Edmund Berger is the guest this week. Berger is an independent writer, researcher, and activist living in Louisville, Kentucky. He blogs intermittently at Deterritorial Investigations Unit and Synthetic Zero, and his first book, entitled Uncertain Futures, provides a detailed look into the economic and political conditions of our present moment from a Marxist perspective.
David Winberg columnist for the Straight Dope reviewed the book this way: Berger says “Fascism is nothing less than the intensification of every regressive sentiment to be found in the whole of society, mobilized and put on the march by elements in the ruling class.” And “To reform capitalism at this stage is a revolutionary act.” That’s how far we’ve fallen.
Thanks should go 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. This week the Inside Zero Books podcast will feature the second half of this conversation with Edmund Berger on Marx and Trump.
Last Wednesday bubb.la hosted a debate in Stockholm in cooperation with Marxist-Humanist Initiative and this week’s podcast is a recording of that debate between libertarian economist Per Bylund and marxist economist Andrew Kliman.
Thanks goes out to our Zero Book Club members. Please do sign up for the membership site if you haven’t already. The next members only Inside Zero Books podcast will feature a conversation with Ashley Frawley on the topic of the phrase “The Personal is Political” along with many other topics.
Ashley Frawley is the author of the Semiotics of Happiness and a member of the Zero Books editorial team.
Zero Squared: andrew kliman anne jaclard Capitalism Left Forum Marxism Pete Dolack terry tapp
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: art color constructivism Marxism Materialism
The book Color, Facture, Art and Design is the topic this week as author Iona Singh drops in to discuss Constructivism, materialism and Marx. Iona, as well as being a Zero Books author, is an artist. Those are her paintings on the cover for this week’s show. It was great talking her.
Last week I mentioned and linked to an essay by Brendan O’Neill at Spiked and asked that people reach out to me either through comments, by email, or on Facebook. I received a couple of emails back, one from Vinnie in New Zealand who said he’d been listening to the podcast and who, rightly, accused me of wanting to be Marc Maron. I also received some comments on the O’Neill piece. An anonymous listener said that O’Neill is consistently defends the powerful and the privileged while making an undeveloped reference to “true leftism” and the other comments were fairly similar.
I would just like to point out that, while the rich and the powerful don’t deserve any sympathy there is a danger in getting too invested in the latest charges of corruption. Namely that this will revive a dream of a functional capitalism that manages to produce something like social equality.
The music in this episode includes Velimir Khlebnikov’s The Radio of The Future, a condensed explanation of Kant’s Aesthetics, an excerpt from The Boards of Canada’s song Aquarius, and a history of the color blue. The music you’re listening to right now is from the short film Suprematism in our Life, but in just a moment you’ll be listening to Iona Singh and I discuss Color and Form.