Critical Theory: The Podcast

Find the podcast on Soundcloud and Apple Podcasts

Latest Episode:

Episode 4: George Jackson and Revolutionary Prison Writings with Paul Redd former member of the Short Corridor Collective, Pelican Bay State Prison, California.

In episode 4 of Critical Theory: The Podcast, Bernard E. Harcourt sits down with Paul Redd, who was incarcerated for 46 years in California, 35 of them in solitary confinement, and was released on May 21, 2020, to discuss the influence of prison writings and the experience of the Short Corridor Collective at Pelican Bay State Prison. The members of the Short Corridor read and exchanged the critical works of George Jackson, Assata Shakur, Eldridge Cleaver, Michel Foucault, Bobby Sands, and others, leading to the country’s largest ever prison hunger strike, in 2013, involving more than thirty thousand women and men throughout California prisons who refused to eat, as part of a series of prison hunger strikes that began in July 2011. The hunger strikes and aggressive litigation ultimately led to California’s agreement to end indeterminate solitary confinement based on gang affiliation. Paul Redd participated in organizing the hunger strikes on the Short Corridor, was part of the efforts to end hostilities, and was a signatory to the agreement. He discusses the role of reading Bobby Sands, George Jackson and others with us in preparation for the public seminar, Revolution 7/13, at the Columbia Center for Contemporary Critical Thought.

Past Episodes:

Episode 1: The New Age of Riots, with Joshua Clover

In the first episode of Critical Theory: The Podcast, Professor Bernard E. Harcourt (Columbia University) and Professor Joshua Clover (UC Davis) discuss Clover’s new book Riot. Strike. Riot. (Verso, 2016), its implications for a critical practice of revolt, and the frontiers of contemporary critical thought. Clover provocatively opens his book: “Riots are coming, they are already here, more are on the way, no one doubts it. They deserve an adequate theory.” This podcast explores that theory and the broader question of the relationship between thought and action. Join us for a stimulating hour on The New Age of Riots.

Episode 2: Weaponizing Life, with Banu Bargu

In episode 2 of Critical Theory: The Podcast, Professor Bernard E. Harcourt sits down with Banu Bargu (UC Santa Cruz) to discuss her book Starve and Immolate: The Politics of Human Weapons (New York: Columbia University Press, 2014) and the weaponization of life in relation to praxis.

Episode 3: The Counterrevolution in Brazil, with Augusto Jobim do Amaral, Fernanda Martins, Antonio Pele, and Jesús Sabariego. Taped in Brazil.

In episode 3 of Critical Theory: The Podcast, Columbia University Professor Bernard E. Harcourt investigates the shockingly high rates of police violence in Brazil, in an effort to understand, in conversation with four brilliant critical theorists in Brazil, how best to comprehend the ongoing state violence. Discussing theories of civil war, of counterrevolution, of necropolitics, biopolitics and biopower, Harcourt and his four guests—Augusto Jobim do AmaralFernanda MartinsAntonio Pele, and Jesús Sabariego—engage in a wide-ranging empirical and theoretical examination of the current crisis of police violence in Brazil. Taped in Porto Alegre and Rio in October 2019, this episode offers a stimulating and haunting analysis of contemporary state violence in Brazil today.