Theory & Philosophy
Karl Marx and Friedrich Engles’ “The Communist Manifesto”

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engles’ “The Communist Manifesto”

May 30, 2020

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In this episode, I present the seminal "Communist Manifesto." Here Marx and Engels establish both the necessity of the worker's revolution and how we can avoid being led astray by reactionary and conservative perspectives.

Mark Fisher’s “Capitalist Realism”

Mark Fisher’s “Capitalist Realism”

May 23, 2020

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In this episode, I present Mark Fisher's "Capitalist Realism." Here, Fisher argues that we are immersed in a totalizing logic of capitalist exploitation that convinces us that it is the only economic, political, and social option. 

René Descartes’ “Meditations on First Philosophy”

René Descartes’ “Meditations on First Philosophy”

May 16, 2020

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In this episode, I turn my attention to Descartes' "Meditations on First Philosophy" where he lays out his process of 'doubting' the world to arrive at the only thing left to exist--the thinking mind. 

Kelly Oliver’s “Witnessing: Beyond Recognition” (Part 2/2)

Kelly Oliver’s “Witnessing: Beyond Recognition” (Part 2/2)

May 9, 2020

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In this episode, I continue my presentation of Kelly Oliver's "Witnessing: Beyond Recognition" where she considers race and the oppression of other minority groups in her proposed alternative--witnessing--to recognition.                                                                                               

Timestamps:

Ch. 5: False Witnesses (Beginning)

Ch. 6: History, Transformation, and Vigilance (8:40)

Ch. 7: Seeing Race (16:46)

Ch. 8: Vision and Recognition (20:17)

Ch. 9: Toward a New Vision (24:10)

Conclusion: Witnessing the Power of Love (30:02).

Kelly Oliver’s “Witnessing: Beyond Recognition” (Part 1/2)

Kelly Oliver’s “Witnessing: Beyond Recognition” (Part 1/2)

May 2, 2020

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In this episode, I begin my presentation of Kelly Oliver's "Witnessing: Beyond Recognition." In this book she tries to conceptualize an anti-oppressive political strategy that is not predicated upon difference, but that is focused on the similarities that bind people. I'm joined by Helene Bigras-Dutrisac to impart her expertise of chapter 4!

Timestamps: 

Introduction: Beyond Recognition (Beginning)

Ch. 1: Domination, Multiculturalism, and the Pathology of Recognition (21:15)

Ch.2 : Identity Politics, Deconstruction, and Recognition (28:45)

Ch. 3: Identity as Subordination, Abjection and Exclusion (37:36)

Ch. 4: The Necessity and Impossibility of Seeing (40:14). 

 

Theodor Adorno’s “The Culture Industry” (Part 2/2)

Theodor Adorno’s “The Culture Industry” (Part 2/2)

April 25, 2020

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In this episode, I continue and finish my presentation of Theodor Adorno's "The Culture Industry." Some of the key takeaways from this half include Adorno's appropriation of Freud's theories to understand the rise of Fascism; Adorno's critique of Benjamin; and Adorno's faith in theory as a form of praxis.

Timestamps: Ch. 4: Culture & Administration (Beginning) Ch. 5: Freudian Theory and the Pattern of Fascist Propaganda (14:30) Ch. 6: How to Look at Television (29:30) Ch. 7: Transparencies on Film (36:20) Ch.8: Free Time (42: 09) Ch. 9: Resignation (46:41)

Theodor Adorno’s “The Culture Industry” (Part 1/2)

Theodor Adorno’s “The Culture Industry” (Part 1/2)

April 18, 2020

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In this episode, I present the first three chapter of Theodor Adorno's "The Culture Industry." Adorno levels a strong critique against mass culture here, highlighting the effects of alienation under advanced industrial capitalism

Timestamps: Ch. 3: The Culture Industry Reconsidered (Beginning) Ch. 1: On the Fetish Character in Music and the Regression of Listening (11:50) Ch 2: The Schema of Mass Culture (26:41)

Roland Barthes’ “The Death of the Author”

Roland Barthes’ “The Death of the Author”

April 11, 2020

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In this episode, I present Roland Barthes' seminal essay, "The Death of the Author." Here he argues that the possibility for interpretation of the text must follow the erasure of the "Author-God" as the bearer of the truth of the text. I try to untangle what I believe to be some misconceptions about Barthes' argument at the end.

Michel Foucault’s “The Birth of the Clinic” (Part 2/2)

Michel Foucault’s “The Birth of the Clinic” (Part 2/2)

April 4, 2020

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In this episode, I conclude my presentation of The Birth of the Clinic where Foucault discusses the full emergence of the clinical gaze with the introduction of death as a positive event and the anatamo-clinical operations of the autopsy. 

Timestamps:

Ch. 6: Signs and Cases (Beginning)

Ch. 7: Seeing and Knowing (21:10)

Ch. 8: Open up a Few Corpses (35:40)

Ch. 9: The Visible Invisible (43:43)

Ch. 10: Crisis in Fevers (52:37)

Conclusion (55:00)

Michel Foucault’s “The Birth of the Clinic” (Part 1/2)

Michel Foucault’s “The Birth of the Clinic” (Part 1/2)

March 28, 2020

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In this episode, I begin my presentation of Foucault's The Birth of the Clinic. This episode covers the first half of the book, outlining the broad socio-political motivations behind the emergence of the clinic. 

Timestamps:                                                                                                            Introduction (Beginning)                                                                                                        Chapter 1: Spaces and Classes (15:05)                                                                          Chapter 2: A Political Consciousness (28:30)                                                                  Chapter 3: The Free Field (34:50)                                                                                  Chapter 4: The Old Age of the Clinic (38:30)                                                                    Chapter 5: The Lesson of the Hospitals (46:23)

 

Judith Butler’s “Undoing Gender” (Part 2/2)

Judith Butler’s “Undoing Gender” (Part 2/2)

March 21, 2020

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Timestamps: Ch. 5: Is Kinship Always Already Heterosexual (Beginning) Ch. 6: Longing for Recognition (9:00) Ch. 7: Quandries of the Incest Taboo (21:30) Ch. 8: Bodily Confessions (27:14) Ch. 9: The End of Sexual Difference (36:00) Ch. 10: The Question of Social Transformation (47:52) Ch. 11: Can the 'Other' of Philosophy Speak (55:25)                                                                 

In this episode, I conclude my presentation of Butler's text, paying close attention to her re-evaluation of her theory of performativity, the political potential of drag, and the possibility for social transformation.

Judith Butler’s “Undoing Gender” (Part 1/2)

Judith Butler’s “Undoing Gender” (Part 1/2)

March 14, 2020

 CW: Suicide, Transphobia, Homophobia.                 Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/theoryandphilosophy                                               Instagram: @theory_and_philosophy

In this episode, I turn my attention to Judith Butler's "Undoing Gender." This is a collection of essays, so it is difficult to summarize the book. However, we can comfortably say that it explores what it means for gender to become undone, and the undoing that is done through gender.

Gilles Deleuze’s “Cinema 1: The Movement Image” (Part 3/3)

Gilles Deleuze’s “Cinema 1: The Movement Image” (Part 3/3)

March 7, 2020

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In this episode, I'm joined by Christina, PhD candidate at the Center for the Study of Theory and Criticism at the University of Western Ontario, to systematically dissect Gilles Deleuze's "Cinema 1: The Movement Image." This is an enigmatic book, treading the line between philosophy and film theory, and never committing to one nor the other. This episode covers from the "Action-Image" chapter to the end.

Gilles Deleuze’s “Cinema 1: The Movement Image” (Part 2/3)

Gilles Deleuze’s “Cinema 1: The Movement Image” (Part 2/3)

February 29, 2020

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In this episode, I'm joined by Christina, PhD candidate at the Center for the Study of Theory and Criticism at the University of Western Ontario, to systematically dissect Gilles Deleuze's "Cinema 1: The Movement Image." This is an enigmatic book, treading the line between philosophy and film theory, and never committing to one nor the other. This episode covers the 2nd commentary on Bergson up to the end of the "Affection-Image" chapter.

Gilles Deleuze’s “Cinema 1: The Movement Image” (Part 1/3)

Gilles Deleuze’s “Cinema 1: The Movement Image” (Part 1/3)

February 22, 2020

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In this episode, I'm joined by Christina, PhD candidate at the Center for the Study of Theory and Criticism at the University of Western Ontario, to systematically dissect Gilles Deleuze's "Cinema 1: The Movement Image." This is an enigmatic book, treading the line between philosophy and film theory, while never committing to one nor the other. This episode covers the preface up to the 2nd commentary on Bergson.

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 4/4)

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 4/4)

February 15, 2020

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In this episode, I conclude my presentation of "Phenomenology of Spirit" by focusing on the last two chapters: "Religion" (0:00) comprised of the sub-chapters "Natural Religion" (11:25), "Religion in the Form of Art" (20:33), and "Revealed Religion" (39:10); and the chapter "Absolute Knowing" (47:47).

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 3/4)

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 3/4)

February 8, 2020

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In this episode, I present the chapter titled "Spirit." It is here that Hegel turns his gaze to society, paying specific attention to the dynamic interaction between individuals vying for their own livelihood and the community in which these individuals exist. It traverses through three phases denoted by three sub-chapters: "The True Spirit. The Ethical Order" (7:00), "Self-Alienated Spirit. Culture" (22:12), and "Spirit that is Certain of Itself. Morality (55:27).

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 2/4)

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 2/4)

February 1, 2020

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In this episode, we continue our dissection of Phenomenology of Spirit. This episode first looks at the chapter "Self-Consciousness" (2:18) including its sub-chapters, "Independence and Dependence of Self-Consciousness: Lordship and Bondage" (6:55) (This is where he talks about the 'master/slave' dialectic) and "Freedom of Self-Consciousness" (14:05). It then presents the chapter titled "Reason" (24:26) and the sub-chapters "Observing Reason" (27:56), "Actualization of Rational Self-Consciousness through its own Activity" (46:55), and "Individuality which takes Itself to be Real in and for-itself" (60:05). 

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 1/4)

G.W.F. Hegel’s “Phenomenology of Spirit” (Part 1/4)

January 25, 2020

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In the first episode of this four part series, I turn my attention to G.W.F. Hegel's "Phenomenology of Spirit," a text as necessary to read as it is difficult to read. This episode specifically tackles the chapters: "Preface" (beginning); "Introduction" (34:50); and "Consciousness" comprised of the sub-chapters "Sense-Certainty" (38:45), "Perception" (49:50), and "Understanding" (57:10). In these chapters, he begins by outlining what he hopes his project to accomplish, and then moves into delineating exactly how human consciousness moves through various phases on the way to Absolute Spirit.

Jacques Derrida’s “Structure, Sign, and Play”

Jacques Derrida’s “Structure, Sign, and Play”

January 18, 2020

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In this episode, I turn my attention to Derrida's groundbreaking essay, "Structure, Sign, and Play." It is here that he lays the foundation of what would become deconstruction, the destabilization of the assumed univocality of either term in a binary. He does this by undoing the oft-assumed belief that structures do not move, and that they are fundamentally opposed to "play." 

Walter Benjamin’s “The Work of Art in the Age of Its Mechanical Reproducibility”

Walter Benjamin’s “The Work of Art in the Age of Its Mechanical Reproducibility”

January 11, 2020

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In this episode, I turn to Walter Benjamin's seminal text, "The Work of Art in the Age of Its Mechanical Reproducibility." Contrary to what some might think, I try to present the way that Benjamin applauds the 'death' of the aura in the age of mechanical reproducibility and the political ramifications of this moment.

John Durham Peters’ “Speaking into the Air”

John Durham Peters’ “Speaking into the Air”

January 4, 2020

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In this episode, I turn my attention to an important text in the field of communication and media studies. Here Peters tries to imagine communication as a meeting of souls by presenting a number of thinkers from Socrates to Jesus to Saint Augustine to Locke to Heidegger.

Timestamps: Ch. 1: Beginning Ch. 2: 12:45 Ch. 3: 18:50 Ch. 4: 25:14 Ch. 5: 31:30 Ch.6: 35:50

Audre Lorde’s “The Master’s Tools will never Dismantle the Master’s House”

Audre Lorde’s “The Master’s Tools will never Dismantle the Master’s House”

December 28, 2019

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In this episode, I present Audre Lorde's "The Master's Tools will never Dismantle the Master's House," a seminal text in the fields of critical face, gender, and feminist studies. Not to mention, ya know, every other field. 

Michel Foucault’s “Discipline & Punish” (Part 2/2)

Michel Foucault’s “Discipline & Punish” (Part 2/2)

December 21, 2019

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In this episode, I present the second half of "Discipline & Punish" to expoun upon his key concepts of docile bodies, the panopticon, and the carceral system.

Timestamps:
Docile Bodies (Beginning)
The Means of Correct Training: 27:50
Panopticism: 39:31
Complete and Austere Institutions: 52:40
Illegalities and Delinquency: 56:50
The Carceral: 1:05:10

Michel Foucault’s “Discipline & Punish” (Part 1/2)

Michel Foucault’s “Discipline & Punish” (Part 1/2)

December 14, 2019

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In this episode, I present the first half of Foucault's seminal Discipline & Punish. In this half he sketches a firm distinction between a model of juridical punishment that mobilizes torture as a deterrent to criminality and a model predicated on surveillance as a deterrent to criminality. 

Nick Land’s “Kant, Capital, and the Prohibition of Incest”

Nick Land’s “Kant, Capital, and the Prohibition of Incest”

December 7, 2019

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In this episode I take on Land's first essay from "Fanged Noumena," "Kant, Capital, and the Prohibition of Incest" that presents his characterization of the present stake that racism has in the maintenance of global capitalistic exploitation.

Sunera Thobani’s “Exalted Subjects”

Sunera Thobani’s “Exalted Subjects”

November 30, 2019

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In this episode, I present Sunera Thobani's book, "Exalted Subjects: The Making of Race and Nation in Canada." It delineates the passage from colonization to domination and how certain subjects--white European descendants--are bestowed with a status of exaltation.

Jacques Lacan’s “L’ étourdit” (Part 3/3)

Jacques Lacan’s “L’ étourdit” (Part 3/3)

November 23, 2019

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In this long episode, Ben and I conclude our dissection of "L' étourdit," paying specific attention to Lacan's use of topology in his illustration of subjectivity constituted by "cuts." We also explore the implications of Lacan's thought as a political tool and how it differs from the work of other theorists--Derrida, Deleuze--who were writing at the same time.

Jacques Lacan’s “L’étourdit” (Part 2/3)

Jacques Lacan’s “L’étourdit” (Part 2/3)

November 16, 2019

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In this episode, Ben and I continue our exploration of "L'étourdit." It is in this episode that we really hone onto the text, with Ben presenting the core themes from the first turn (the first half) of the essay. 

Jacques Lacan’s “L’étourdit” (Part 1/3)

Jacques Lacan’s “L’étourdit” (Part 1/3)

November 9, 2019

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In this episode, I'm joined by Ben, PhD candidate in Theory & Criticism, to discuss one of Jacques Lacan's most enigmatic texts, "L' étourdit." This first episode contextualizes Lacan's thought and establishes a necessary base from which to explore "L' étourdit."

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 5/5)

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 5/5)

November 2, 2019

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In this episode, I conclude my presentation of Kant's Critique of Pure Reason. Here we conclude the "Transcendental Dialectic," and point to the interesting uses of a new metaphysics toward the consolidation of a general happiness and perpetual peace. 

Jussi Parikka’s “What is Media Archaeology?”

Jussi Parikka’s “What is Media Archaeology?”

October 26, 2019

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In this episode, I turn my attention to a seminal text in the fields of new materialism and media studies. Here Parikka argues that Media Archaeology serves the function of revealing forgotten and yet-to-be-realized media that disturb the assumed teleological progression of our gadgets.

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 4/5)

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 4/5)

October 19, 2019

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In this episode, I continue my presentation of Critique of Pure Reason, specifically presenting the first two chapter of the "Transcendental Dialectic." Here he takes aim at the cosmological ideas and how traditional dialectics only direct us toward a mirage, not truth. Kant proposes transcendental idealism as a solution to the problem presented by dialectics. 

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 3/5)

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 3/5)

October 12, 2019

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In this episode, I continue my exploration of "Critique of Pure Reason," specifically presenting the 2nd and 3rd chapters of the "Transcendental Doctrine of the Power Judgment" and the appendix to it.

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 2/5)

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 2/5)

September 28, 2019

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In this episode, I continue my exploration of "Critique of Pure Reason" to propel on my discussion of the Transcendental Logic so as to include how the Power of Judgment operates alongside the transcendental logic.

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 1/5)

Immanuel Kant’s “Critique of Pure Reason” (Part 1/5)

September 27, 2019

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In this episode, I begin my presentation of Kant's "Critique of Pure Reason." Here, I take on the introduction, his section on "Transcendental Aesthetics," and his section on "Transcendental Logic"

Chandra Mohanty’s “Feminism Without Borders”

Chandra Mohanty’s “Feminism Without Borders”

September 26, 2019

In this episode, I present Mohanty's "Feminism Without Borders." In it she makes the case for an intersectional feminism that neither homogenizes nor erases the real lived, material experiences of thirld world women and women of color.

Herbert Marcuse’s “An Essay on Liberation”

Herbert Marcuse’s “An Essay on Liberation”

September 26, 2019

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In this episode, I present Marcuse's radical idea of a new sensibility, a utopian ideal to combat late Capitalism.

Friedrich Nietzsche’s “On Truth & Lying in a Non-Moral Sense”

Friedrich Nietzsche’s “On Truth & Lying in a Non-Moral Sense”

September 25, 2019

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In this episode, I present Nietzsche's ideas from his brilliant essay "On Truth and Lying." Here he argues that as long as we are immersed in language, we will be unable to get to the core of truth.

Friedrich Nietzsche’s “The Birth of Tragedy” (Part 2/2)

Friedrich Nietzsche’s “The Birth of Tragedy” (Part 2/2)

September 24, 2019

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In this episode, I finish my presentation of "The Birth of Tragedy" to expound upon Nietzsche's commentary on his contemporary German situation and the implications of tragedy for the future.