Archive for January 2017

Inside Zero Books #22: Symptomatic Redness w/Mirowski

Jan 28th, 2017 | By

This week’s Inside Zero Books podcast is an episode of Symptomatic Redness. Amogh Saru is in conversation with historian and philosopher Philip Mirowski. Philip Mirowski is a professor at the University of Notre Dame and author of Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste: How Neoliberalism Survived the Financial Meltdown . Zero Books has

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What’s Left Now: An interview with Zahari Richter

Jan 27th, 2017 | By

Zahari Richter is a graduate student, artist and blogger at  He and I had this discussion shortly after the election of Donald Trump about the limits of intersectionality and the possibility of bringing it closer to its original intention. C. Derick Varn: In light of Trump’s recent victory, there has been a lot of

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Zero Squared #96: The Busybody State

Jan 26th, 2017 | By

Josie Appleton is the guest this week and we discuss her book Officious: Rise of the Busy Body State. The book argues that the Busy Body State is defined by an attachment to bureaucratic procedures for their own sake: the rule for the sake of a rule; the form for the sake of a form.

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Inside Zero Books #21: Lecture on the SI

Jan 21st, 2017 | By

This week’s Inside Zero Books podcast is a presentation on the Situationist Internationale given to the Portland State University philosophy club shortly after the election of Trump. Here I speak to the limits of the SI’s cultural critique and try to encourage the students to take action against Trump while not being swept up into

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Capitalist Realism (an excerpt)

Jan 16th, 2017 | By

The world lost a radical thinker on January 13th, 2017. Mark Fisher’s book Capitalist Realism helped to put Zero Books on the map in 2009. There are other books that sell as well as his, but none that are as central to Zero Books’ mission. To have lost Mark in what was the prime of

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Inside Zero Books #20: Žižek Debrief

Jan 14th, 2017 | By

C Derick Varn stops by to talk about the Žižek interview this week, but the conversation veers all over the place as we discuss immigration, social class, and (as always) the labor theory of value. In other news, Zero Books author Mark Fisher has died and we are in shock. His wife announced that Fisher,

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Zero Squared #95: Žižek and the Double Blackmail

Jan 11th, 2017 | By

Slavoj Žižek is the guest this week as we discuss the flak he’s received for a few of his Lacanian interventions into politics recently, Marx’s Labor Theory of Value, and his most current book Against the Double Blackmail. “[A]n urgent and entertaining diagnosis of the ongoing refugee crisis and global terror threat, highlighting the glaring

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Inside Zero Books #19: Unedited Zizek

Jan 7th, 2017 | By

This week’s Inside Zero Books podcast features an unedited conversation with Slavoj Zizek about his book “Against the Double Blackmail.” This conversation will be edited and featured in next week’s Zero Squared podcast but, in my excitement, I can’t help but make it available early. Zizek has been rather embroiled in controversy, more so than

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Inside Zero Books Podcast #18: The politics of Mort Sahl

Jan 1st, 2017 | By

Happy New Year. This week’s Inside Zero Books podcast takes a look at a celebrity who 2016 surprisingly didn’t kill. At 89 Mort Sahl is the great-grandfather of American satirical stand-up, and my son Benjamin joins me to discuss whether Sahl has become, or always was, a conservative or whether he is what he says

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