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Cautiously, museums across the world are opening their doors. But there’s one place where, even during the pandemic, you always get to be up close – the virtual museum. In the digital environment, the museum can take on a new role, less a place of authority, more an agora of ideas. But we have to think outside the box to solve curatorial issues in …
 
The death of writer and activist Nawal el Saadawi has just been announced. In 2011 Tess Woodcraft interviewed her at a conference organised by the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Right Organisation for Pod Academy. We reproduce it here. Typically, and at 80 years old, she had stopped off at the Occupy encampment around St Paul’s Cathedral on her way fr…
 
A Scottish Laird becomes Lord of the Bedchamber in the Abyssinian/Ethiopian court and finds the source of the Nile. Like many of his wealthy contemporaries in the 18th and 19th centuries, Lord James Bruce of Kinnaird made the grand tour of Europe (see the companion blog to this podcast). Unlike many of them he also ventured further afield. For thre…
 
Who is allowed to make things up? What does fiction writing have to do with life? Is a novel a document? This is the second lecture in the If Project series, Thinking Between the Lines: truth, lies and fiction in an age of populism. Dr Katie da Cunha Lewin (@kdc_lewin) explores what it means to ‘make things up’ in literature, especially looking at …
 
Hello, this is Pod Academy. Of late, there has been much talk of sexism, in particular sexual harassment, behind the scenes in the film industry. But what about the films themselves? Pod Academy’s Tatiana Prorokova took a look at the hit movie Beauty and the Beast. One of the highest grossing films this year, it has taken over $1bn worldwide. The r…
 
A radical vision for arts policy should be at the heart of any progressive government argue Professor Rod Stoneman and Adam Stoneman. Note: This is not a transcript of the podcast interview with Rod and Adam, but rather the text of a paper by them on arts policy. Restoring financial support for the arts would hardly amount to a radical transformati…
 
Why and how should we interpret visual art? With a vast historical sweep – from early medieval art on the walls inside the Basilica of San Vitale to Banksy’s 2015 stencils of shipwrecked refugees on walls in Calais, by way of Caravaggio, Nevelson and Rothko – author, artist and film maker Gillian McIver looks at various theories of art criticism an…
 
When the gun is replaced by the melody: how does music resist? ‘Even if they don’t have a message, the act of actually playing music itself is resistance,’ says Dr. Sara McGuiness, senior teaching fellow in Music at SOAS. Classical Thai musician Luang Pradit Pairoh fought through the melodies of his songs surrounded by oppression; Ahmed Maher signe…
 
This podcast is the second in our series on new concert music. New music can be unfamiliar and challenging – this series, written and presented by composer Arthur Keegan-Bole, is designed to present new music in a non-scary way or at least to explain that composers are making logical music – not trying to make weird, ‘difficult’ music to confound t…
 
Science Fiction can often help us understand realpolitik in the real world. Is Tyrian Lannister a realist or a liberal? What would Mr. Spock have to say about rational choice theory? And what did Stanley Kubrick read to create Dr. Strangelove? Stephen Dyson is the author of Otherworldly Politics: The International Relations of Star Trek, Game of Th…
 
This is a podcast about music. A podcast about Nocturne. A podcast of a Nocturne inspired by the BBC’s nightly Shipping Forecast. Produced and presented by composer, Arthur Keegan-Bole A K-B: Oh dear, I crashed the pips. In the world of radio, crashing the pips – that is, talking over the six sine tone beeps that mark the hour on BBC radio – is a s…
 
“Originality doesn’t mean creation from nothingness…..it can also mean reusing something in a very creative and innovative way… if we took the standards of how people create that are implicit in a lot of copyright law cases, that basically say ‘you can’t copy’, most of what we consider to be great classical works couldn’t have been created…” In thi…
 
In this podcast, Tatiana Prorokova considers gender ambiguity in Vietnam War films. The Vietnam War takes a specific place in U.S. military history. Having influenced generations of Americans, the conflict unsurprisingly found a wide reflection in American cinema. The most famous, as well as the most significant ones were the films created in the 1…
 
‘A spindly shit coppice, with ghosts of plastic bags rustling in its branches.’ This week’s podcast, by artist Robin Bale, is an evocation of a windswept rubbish dump under the M11 motorway. It starts with the sounds of moving through undergrowth, traffic in the background. A twig snaps. Abstract and slow percussion fades in……. A burnt boot…crushed…
 
Podcast produced by Lee Millam Slang. In this podcast Tony Thorne, former Head of the Language Centre, now Visiting Consultant, at King’s College, London and author of the Bloomsbury Dictionary of Contemporary Slang, looks at what slang is, how it’s used, where it comes from and what words are being used as part of our everyday language. Slang shou…
 
Wilfred Bion (1897 – 1979) was an influential (if at times ‘gnomic’) psychoanalyst who spent much of his working life at the Tavistock clinic in London. He is perhaps best known for Experiences in Groups (London:Tavistock 1961), a key text in the emerging group psychotherapy and encounter group movements of the 1960s,and for Learning from Experienc…
 
14th January 1795 ANN HAWKINS was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 7th of January , a feather bed, value 20s. a flock and feather bolster, value 10d. two woollen blankets, value 3s. a linen sheet, value 2s. a linen counterpane, value 12d. a looking glass in a walnut-tree frame, value 4s. a pair of tongs, value 6d. a brass candlestick, valu…
 
The late Stuart Hall said cultural studies, within a Marxist tradition, enables us “to understand culture – cultural discourse – the place and relationship of the ideological.” In this podcast, which is part of our Marxism in the 21st Century series, Steve Edwards, Professor of History of Art at the Open University talks to Kieron Yates about Marxi…
 
Podcast produced and presented by Lily Ames This podcast is part of our Feast for the Senses strand and is the first of a mini series on the study of Sound by Lily Ames. Mike Wyeld: It’s a new world, it’s like the sound is in the air as everybody jokes about at the moment and it really is, we have that ability now to have people who are dedicated t…
 
This podcast about urban smellscapes was produced by Jo Barratt and first aired on Life in Scents. It is part of our ‘Feast for the Senses’ series. Have you ever stepped off a plane and been aware of a different smell in the air – the smell of a country, a city, a terrain? This podcast is a fascinating exploration of our urban smellscapes. We are a…
 
This podcast on the rainforest music of the BayAka was produced and presented by Jo Barratt It is part of our series on ethnomusicology made with the sound archive of the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford. In this podcast you’ll hear the sound of the BayAka people of the Central African Republic. Specifically a collection of recordings made by Louis Sar…
 
On Friday 7th November 2014, Manchester Metropolitan University and the Centre for the Study of Football and its Communities hosted a conference entitled ‘Football and Culture 2014.’ The event aimed to explore the relationship and interaction between football and wider forms of cultural representation, with papers exploring topics as diverse as fan…
 
To begin at the beginning: It is Spring, moonless night in the small town, starless and bible-black, the cobblestreets silent and the hunched, courters’-and- rabbits’ wood limping invisible down to the sloeblack, slow, black, crowblack, fishingboat-bobbing sea. [Under Milk Wood] 2014 is the centenary of the birth of the poet Dylan Thomas. Scarlett …
 
This podcast is a conversation between political cartoonist Martin Rowson and writer Neil Gaiman, originally recorded for Index on Censorship. In it, Gaiman and Rowson talk about Alan Moore and Milo Minara, whether comics are unrepentantly in the gutter, how the work of Hogarth and Gilray speaks across the centuries, how the bible contains more sho…
 
This podcast is part of our Rupture, Crisis and Transformation series looking at new perspectives in the field of US Studies, drawn from the event of the same name at Birkbeck, University of London. It is the keynote presentation from world-renowned author Caryl Phillips. The conference organiser Anna Hartnell, explains Anna Hartnell: Caryl Phillip…
 
This podcast is one of two keynotes at the Rupture, Crisis, Transformation conference on the future of American Studies held at Birkbeck in November 2014 [the other, Caryl Phillips on the Star-spangled banner can be found here] Rejecting ideas of American exceptionalism, Wai Chee Dimock looks at the work of author William Faulkner in a world contex…
 
This Podcast is part of our Rupture, Crisis, Transformation series drawn from the conference of the same name held at Birkbeck, University of London in November 2014, offering new perspectives on American Studies. It is the paper given by Pieter Vermeulen. This presentation was followed by a panel discussion in which Pieter was Joined by Georgiana …
 
This Podcast is part of our Rupture, Crisis, Transformation series, drawn from the conference of the same name offering new perspectives on American Studies, held at Birkbeck, University of London in November 2014. . In Petrochemical Gothic, Georgiana Banita addresses the new, shifting interface of American Studies and the emerging field of Energy …
 
Is technology pushing us too fast? Do we need time to catch up and get to know how the technologies we use actually work? How do we understand technology in the the overall depictions of America in crisis? Does the narrative of ‘progress’ get in the way? Chairing the panel, Dr Zara Dinnen reflects on Richard Linklater‘s film, Boyhood, to demonstrat…
 
Podcast produced by Jo Barratt Susan Sontag said smelling ‘gives one a sensation of knowledge rinsed clean of thought’. The effect of smell is powerful, but rarely articulated and therefore rarely recorded. So how does an historian of smell go about his work? There are millions upon millions of smells, but how can he recreate them and how does he u…
 
This podcast was presented and produced by Jo Barratt This year marks 25 years since the publication of Geoff Dyer’s first novel, The Colour of Memory. Geoff is a multi-award winning writer who has written 4 novels and is also known for his essays. He’s been described by the New York Times as ‘one of our greatest living critics’ The colour of memor…
 
This podcast is presented and produced by Kieron Yates. Although he’s one of France’s most widely read and popular authors of the twentieth century, Boris Vian has never won the international recognition gained by friends and contemporaries such as Jean Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. Kieron Yates talks to Alistair Rolls, Associate Professor in…
 
Introducing Hari Kunzru Hari Kunzru is an award-winning British novelist famous for authoring several highly acclaimed novels, including The Impressionist (2002), Transmission (2004), My Revolutions (2007) and Gods Without Men (2011). Named among the twenty best young British novelists by Granta in 2003, Kunzru is also a PEN activist and 2014 Gugge…
 
Christopher Daley: These days we are used to hearing about the power of banks, GDP percentages, hedge funds, shareholders, stock market reports, house prices, the business cycle, deficits, debts, surpluses – but has it always been this way? Has money and finance always been such a prominent focal point for the popular consciousness? And if so, how …
 
This podcast was produced by Jo Barratt and first aired on Life in Scents. Have you ever stepped off a plane and been aware of a different smell in the air – the smell of a country, a city, a terrain? This podcast is a fascinating exploration of our urban smellscapes. We are all familiar with landscapes – ‘smellscapes’ are the smell equivalent. It …
 
“Biography is actually a quest for lives that speak to us” said biographer Hermione Lee. So what is the role of the biopic in contemporary film culture? What is it that we are looking for in the increasingly popular ‘biopic’ genre – films like Selma, Diana, Saving Mr Banks, 12 Years a Slave or The Wolf of Wall Street that claim to be based on real …
 
Is the need for ritual hard-wired into human beings? From a Cherokee medicine man smoking a pipe to Sufi mystics whirling in ecstasy or Pope Francis celebrating mass – different as they may seem, all of these people engage in a form of religious ritual. There are even secular rituals, such as the chanting on football terraces. Wherever you go in th…
 
“I work in a dying industry. Newspapers will die. “And what happens to you when you know you’re going to die? It focuses the mind, it brings to the fore certain existential questions like, ‘Who am I?’ ‘Why am I here?’ ‘What has it all been about?’ “It might even raise the questions, ‘Is death the end?’ ‘ Is there life after death?’ What am I going …
 
The term ‘ethnomusicology’ was coined in 1959 by Dutch academic, Jaap Kunst. Put simply, it is the social and cultural study of music – whether that is gamelan, hip hop, British folk or any other kind. A Spanish translation of this podcast is set out below the English transcript. We are very grateful to Héctor Pittman Villarreal for producing it fo…
 
Podcast produced and presented by Jo Barratt. “No human sense is more neglected in ethnographic museums than sound”. The Reel to Real project at the Pitt Rivers Museum seeks to redress the balance by making available, both in and beyond the museum space itself, the important sound collections donated to the museum over the past 100 years. In this p…
 
Pod Academy’s Daniel Marc Janes speaks to playwright and academic Dan Rebellato, Professor of Contemporary Theatre at Royal Holloway and one of Britain’s leading theatrical commentators. Daniel Marc Janes: I’m in the Calder Theatre Bookshop in London. It couldn’t be better located to evoke Britain’s theatrical heritage, situated as it is on The Cut…
 
Year-in, year-out the circus comes to town. But in 2013 circuses are in trouble. Seen by many as entertainment from a bygone age and facing Government action to ban circuses with wild animals, what is it that keeps circuses on the road? Why do they carry on going? In this podcast, Lee Millam talks to Professor Ron Beadle, Director of Research Ethic…
 
The cinema has brought us a myriad of exceptional films over the past 100 years. However, it is often the experience of cinema-going that sticks in the memory – first dates, outings with family and friends, the inflated prices of pick ‘n’ mix, the architectural splendour (or ugliness) of the buildings themselves. The Cinema Memories project at UCL …
 
In this podcast, Jo Barratt of Life In Scents goes to the new exhibition at CHELSEA space to experience a new work by Oswaldo Maciá, which takes the form of an olfactory–acoustic sculptural composition. The Library of Cynicism uses the ancient Greek figure of Diogenes as a starting point to undo assumptions of truth and belief through a sound and s…
 
We live in a democracy, but the scope for people to represent themselves is constrained. It is in the cultural sphere, says Dr. Louise Purbrick, lecturer in art history at University of Brighton that we can perhaps, “produce a space where people can create change, make change or at the very least be heard” Ishan Cader talks to Louise about the role…
 
This podcast was produced, and is introduced, by Jo Barratt, of Life in Scents, a regular podcast on things olfactory. Anosmia is the inability to smell. It’s what blindness is to sight, or deafness is to hearing. It can occur after a severe head injury, as a precursor to degenerative brain disease such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, or as a resul…
 
Andrie Morris talks to playwright and Shakespeare expert, Jennie Buckman and Jatinder Verma, Artistic Director of Tara Arts about working with Shakespeare. If you find Shakespeare’s language difficult, what’s the best way to approach it? First she paid a visit to the Globe Theatre on London’s Southbank, where a rehearsal for Romeo and Juliet was in…
 
This podcast, exploring composer Graham Fitkin‘s musical response to the Iraq War and Guantanamo Bay, was prompted by the project Art and War: Responses to Iraq conducted by Dr. Alan Ingram of University College London. Dr Ingram’s study looks at the responses of artists and art spaces in the UK to the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the subsequent occup…
 
This programme is called “The Art of Listening”. I’ll be looking at pitch in music, exploring what it means to us and showing you how important it can be in everyday life. Later we’ll also see how the ear can be fooled just as easily as the eyes with some “audio illusions.” So Pitch…Let’s start by looking at wikipedia, the source of all knowledge: …
 
This is the fourth of our Huston Film Lectures, a series of lectures given to students at the National University of Ireland’s Huston School of Film and Digital Media in Galway. The lecture series features leading film directors, writers, producers, cinematographers and academics. Laura Mulvey, the British film theorist and film-maker, who is curre…
 
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