Podcast

What if your favorite college professors were willing to talk about everything from philosophy and politics to pop culture and love with the same kind of consideration and enthusiasm? Each week C. Travis Webb, Seph Rodney, and Steven Fullwood discuss life, culture, and art, and challenge their listeners to take fewer things for granted and all things more seriously.

Episode 0098 – Comedy: Offensive Comedy and Its Virtues

Episode 0098 – Comedy: Offensive Comedy and Its Virtues

There’s laughing at yourself, and then there’s laughing at others. While the former is virtuous the latter is indispensable to group cohesion. In this episode the hosts talk about Jim Jefferies and Louis C.K. What are the limits of comedy?

Humor: What’s so funny?

Humor: What’s so funny?

The hosts take a personal look at what they find funny and why. Fair warning, political sensitivities aren’t off-limits.

1619: Medical Apartheid

1619: Medical Apartheid

The history of racism in medical care is not surprising, but the impact it continues to have on contemporary medical treatments is shocking. How do unscientific racial biases continue to distort evidence based medicine?

1619: Food, Sugar, and Race

1619: Food, Sugar, and Race

The hosts talk about the history of food production in the United States and its connections to poverty, race, and slavery. How is the legacy of slavery connected to the contemporary obesity epidemic? Listen and find out.

1619: Music, Blackface, and Performing Freedom

1619: Music, Blackface, and Performing Freedom

The hosts discuss the history of “performing blackness” in music, as well as other forms of media. What does it mean to “co-opt” another culture’s music? What’s fair and what’s foul in artistic expression?

1619: Music as Cultural Appropriation

1619: Music as Cultural Appropriation

The legacy of slavery is long, but should the criticism of it extend to musical appropriation? What exactly is musical appropriation, and what can Warren G’s Regulate teach us about it?

Climate Change: Art as Social Practice

Climate Change: Art as Social Practice

Contemplating the consequences of climate change is not only the purview of scientists. Artists are also helping to imagine the contours of a warming planet, as well as re-imagine what possibilities might emerge from this global crisis.

Climate Change: Revisiting “An Inconvenient Truth”

Climate Change: Revisiting “An Inconvenient Truth”

How well does “An Inconvenient Truth” (2006) hold up after ten plus years of scientific research and political upheaval? The hosts engage not only with the film and its nominal protagonist, Al Gore, but the effectiveness of film as advocacy.

Climate Change: Material Memory

Climate Change: Material Memory

Memory isn’t something that lives only in our minds. Memory lives in objects–in museums, and scrap books, and archives. How can archives help us make sense of climate change? What do we choose to preserve and why?

Climate Change: Who Will Suffer and Who Will Profit

Climate Change: Who Will Suffer and Who Will Profit

The effects of climate change will not be evenly distributed. Some landscapes, cultures, and peoples will suffer more than others. And some people will profit from that suffering. Who has a responsibility to deal with that suffering?

Toni Morrison: Her Life in Words

Toni Morrison: Her Life in Words

The hosts take a break from their long form discussion about climate change to discuss Toni Morrison, who died on August 5th. “We die,” Morrison said in her 1993 Nobel Prize acceptance. “That may be the meaning of life. But we do language,” she added. “That may be the measure of our lives.”

Climate Change: Population Displacement and Poverty

Climate Change: Population Displacement and Poverty

How can we think about climate change in new ways, so that we might better understand what’s at stake? If we look at the history of demographic displacement then the future of climate change comes into stark relief. And that future is darker for some than for others.

(r)omance: Alternative Lifestyles

How do alternative lifestyles effect historically heteronormative notions of “romance?” The hosts discuss the ways in which romance has changed in response to the mainstreaming of LGTBQ interests, and how LGTBQ interests have been shaped by mainstream romance.

(r)omance: episodic or epic

(r)omance: episodic or epic

We often talk about our lives as if it is one long running story, from cradle to grave. We do the same in our romantic lives, from young and fantastic to mature and sober. But is that true? How much do we actually learn from romance?

(r)omance: Are you difficult?

(r)omance: Are you difficult?

What makes someone “difficult” in romantic relationships? Putting themselves under the microscope, the hosts explore their own shortcomings and wonder how difficult they are to love.

(r)omance: What Is It?

(r)omance: What Is It?

Romance–with a lowercase “r”–has been a preoccupation in the West since the 17th century. But it’s rarely discussed with any seriousness outside of literature or without pop cultural clichés. The hosts aim to change that.

Our Hosts

Steven G. Fullwood

Steven G. Fullwood was born on January 15, 1966. He is an author, filmmaker, podcaster, and curator who may best be known as the archivist who founded the In the Life Archive at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, part of the New York Public Library.

Most Popular Posts:

Brett Kavanaugh Meets #MeToo

TAA 0038 – C. Travis Webb, Seph Rodney, and Steven Fullwood discuss the Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh in the light of the #MeToo movement. The conversation turns to issues of personal responsibility, power, integrity, and, as always, the history of civilization. This is part I of a multi-part discussion.

Fathers

TAA 0035 – C. Travis Webb, Seph Rodney, and Steven Fullwood discuss fatherhood. Being sons and having sons informs their exploration of masculinity, pride, misfortune, and the culture’s ambivalence towards traditional masculine values.

C. Travis Webb

C. Travis Webb, PhD, is editor of The American Age

Most Popular Posts:

Welcome to The American Age

The American Age has one objective: to re-ignite zeal for the American idea. Not by provoking nostalgia for what has been, but by inspiring hope for what might be…

Tsunamis

Mountains are on the move. The oceans are growing. Vast shelves of ice are phase shifting. The world is unstable, and has always been, but for thousands of years it did not appear so to us…

Seph Rodney

Seph Rodney, PhD, is a staff writer and editor for the online art magazine Hyperallergic and has written for CNN, American Craft magazine, and Artillery magazine. He created a radio show in London called The Thread, broadcast on Resonance FM from 2008 to 2011. He has a forthcoming book from Routledge press on the topic of how the experience of attending an art museum has changed in the last generation. Seph was born in Jamaica and lives in the South Bronx.

Most Popular Posts:

Potlatch Sneakers: The Economics of Social Status

TAA 0040 – C. Travis Webb, Seph Rodney, and Steven Fullwood discuss why human beings of limited economic means purchase luxury items–such as expensive sneakers. Who gets to ask the question, how does it manifest across culture, what do these items mean?

Triangulating #MeToo: Morality, Ideology, and Desire

TAA 0039 – C. Travis Webb, Seph Rodney, and Steven Fullwood discuss the #MeToo movement and the way in which mainstream American culture over-simplifies sexual desire. Woody Allen, The Son’s of Anarchy, and Brett Kavanaugh are dissected and analyzed.

Share This