KPFA: Against the Grain [Program Feed]

  • Fund Drive Special: Economics and the Contradictions of Capitalist Democracy
    The Marxist economist Yanis Varoufakis took on the leaders of neoliberal capitalism, in a high-stakes battle for the well-being of the Greek people. The former Minister of Finance for Greece spoke last week in Berkeley. In his talk, he discussed the violence necessary for the emergence of capitalism and reflected on the dim view he holds of his own profession, economics.
  • Against the Grain – May 22, 2018
    A radio and web media project whose aim is to provide in-depth analysis and commentary on a variety of matters — political, economic, social and cultural — important to progressive and radical thinking and activism.
  • Fund Drive Special: The Rise of the National Security State
    The history of the 20th century is the history of empire.  But did it have to be? We’ll look at various episodes in U.S. war-making, through the lens of award-winning director Oliver Stone, from World War One to World War Two and the development of the atomic bomb, to Vietnam and the proxy wars of today.
  • Fund Drive Special: A Film About Marx
    Jason Barker’s film about Marx’s ideas features Slavoj Zizek, Michael Hardt, and other prominent thinkers.
  • Fund Drive Special: Voices of Resistance
    Civil rights, women’s liberation, the labor movement, battles over the environment: those struggles were fought and won by millions of people, inspired by the ideas of iconoclasts and visionaries. And KPFA and Pacifica were there to capture and record those struggles and the ideas that nurtured them.
  • Against the Grain – May 14, 2018
    More highlights from “Manufacturing Consent,” the award-winning film about Noam Chomsky’s ideas and insights.
  • Fund Drive Special: Noam Chomsky on the Media
    Noam Chomsky’s ideas and critiques are featured in the documentary film “Manufacturing Consent.”
  • Fund Drive Special: Richard Walker on the Bay Area
    Richard Walker discusses his eye-opening book “Pictures of a Gone City: Tech and the Dark Side of Prosperity in the San Francisco Bay Area.”
  • Karl Marx’s Bicentennial
    Few thinkers have shaped the world as much as Karl Marx, although the ways that he changed it may not have been to his liking, as David McNally argues. He discusses the ideas and legacy of Karl Marx, to mark the bicentennial of his birth.
  • Michael Hardt Discusses “Assembly”
    Amid regimes of exploitation and social control, who or what will step forward to save the day? Michael Hardt [1] discusses how people and social movements might come together to achieve fundamental social and political transformation. He believes existing circuits of social cooperation could be harnessed to challenge the efforts of elites to extract and privatize “the common.” Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, Assembly [2] Oxford University Press, 2017   [1] [2]
  • Wobblies of the World
    By way of celebrating International Workers Day, or May Day, we look back at the legendary union, the Industrial Workers of the World, or Wobblies, with historian Kenyon Zimmer.  He discusses the lessons to be learned from how the Wobblies fought back and united workers across cultural and racial differences. Resources: Peter Cole, David Struthers, Kenyon Zimmer (eds), Wobblies of the World: A Global History of the IWW [1] Pluto Press, 2017 [1]
  • Race and Ideology in Science and Medicine
    Long-discredited notions of race as rooted in biology fueled eugenics policies and the Nazi extermination project. And yet, Osagie Obasogie [1] asserts, biological race as an ideology continues to inform and infect key developments in science and medicine. Obasogie believes that race impact assessments can address some of the dangers posed by the persistence of regressive understandings of race. Obasogie and Darnovsky, eds., Beyond Bioethics: Toward a New Biopolitics [2] UC Press, 2018 Ogletree, Jr., and Sarat, eds., Racial Reconciliation and the Healing of a Nation [3] NYU Press, 2017   [1] [2] [3]
  • 17th Century Climate Crisis
    The effects of climate change are here and serious. While it may seem like uncharted waters in the modern era, our ancestors in the 1600s faced a global climate crisis in a century wracked by wars, famines, and social unrest. Historian Geoffrey Parker discusses the lessons of the 17th century, where elites — with the exception of Tokugawa Japan — responded to the “Little Ice Age” with wars and scapegoating. Resources: Geoffrey Parker, Global Crisis War, Climate Change and Catastrophe in the Seventeenth Century [1]Yale University Press, 2013 [1]
  • Frederick Douglass and the Politics of Rage
    What role can rage play in political struggle? Doesn’t rage impede one’s ability to think clearly and respond effectively? William Sokoloff [1] contends that rage is a fundamental component of democratic citizenship. He describes how Frederick Douglass used rage to fuel and sharpen his critiques of slavery. William Sokoloff, Confrontational Citizenship: Reflections on Hatred, Rage, Revolution, and Revolt [2] SUNY Press, 2017 [1] [2]
  • What Zombies Tell Us About Our Times
    Zombies are almost the mascots of our dark times. Hard to avoid in popular culture, they have become so ubiquitous that even the Centers for Disease Control put out a tongue in cheek guide to surviving the zombie apocalypse. Sarah Juliet Lauro discusses the origins of the zombie, from enslaved worker to liberated rebel in revolutionary Haiti, to the consumer zombie of the 1960s, and today’s anxiety about societal collapse. Resources: Sarah Juliet Lauro (ed.), Zombie Theory: A Reader [1] University of Minnesota Press, 2017   [1]

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