Recent Shows

  • Week of: 
    July 17, 2016
    What is it: 

    The notion of identity has become so hugely important in contemporary political discourse that no conversation on social issues would be complete without it. Identity politics typically focuses on how to empower individuals from marginalized groups so that they can achieve greater equality and representation. But why should anyone mobilize behind a banner of identity rather than ideology? Why is it important have a diversity of identities in political representation? And does politicizing identities genuinely empower communities or just further divide them? John and Ken find common cause with Tommie Shelby from Harvard University, author of We Who Are Dark: The Philosophical Foundations of Black Solidarity.

    Tommie Shelby, Caldwell Titcomb Professor of African and African American Studies and of Philosophy, Harvard University

  • Week of: 
    July 10, 2016
    First Aired: 
    October 13, 2013
    What is it: 

    We are often taught that vengeance is a reprehensible or unworthy motivation and that, as a result, pursuing revenge should not be the method of choice when meting out punishment for crimes. Incarceration and other penalties, according to this view, can only be justified in as much as they protect society, rehabilitate criminals, or deter further crime. But are these approaches to punishment really more just than the retributive or vengeance model? Don’t the victims of crime deserve some kind of payback for their suffering? Are justice and revenge in conflict with one another, or do they actually go hand in hand? John and Ken trade favors with Thane Rosenbaum from the Fordham Law School, author of Payback: The Case For Revenge.

    Thane Rosenbaum, Director of the Forum on Law, Culture & Society, Fordham University

  • Week of: 
    July 3, 2016
    What is it: 

    Liberal democracy has its problems, including the fact that in trying to build consensus, it often ends up oppressing minorities or those who dissent. Radical democracy, on the other hand, tries to build consensus around difference, and challenge oppressive power relationships. But what are the risks of radical democracy? Is it really possible to have a democratic nation state without social conformity? How do we ensure both freedom and equality for all citizens in a society? And how does the anti-colonial tradition help us rethink what a modern democracy might be like? John and Ken join the struggle with Stanford historian Aishwary Kumar, author of Radical Equality: Ambedkar, Gandhi, and the Risk of Democracy, in a program recorded live at Stage Werx Theatre in San Francisco.

    Aishwary Kumar, Professor of History, Stanford University

John Perry and Ken Taylor

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