The global politics podcast at the end of the End of History. From a left perspective. Join us as we chart a course beyond the age of ’bunga bunga’.
/270/ Russia vs the West ft. Richard Sakwa
On the endgame to war in Ukraine.
Eminent Russian expert, Putin and Gorbachev biographer and ex-Sovietologist, Prof Richard Sakwa, joins us in advance of his imminent retirement from the University of Kent. We talk about the geopolitics of NATO expansion and the dynamics of the Ukraine war reaching back to 2014. How high is the risk of nuclear war now, and how might the Ukraine war play out?
Whisper it, but Putin has a point in Ukraine, Richard Sakwa, The Spectator
The Dual State in Russia, Richard Sakwa, Post-Soviet Affairs
A Review of 'Frontline Ukraine' by Richard Sakwa, Peter Hitchens, Mail on Sunday
Putin Redux: Continuity and change, Richard Sakwa, openDemocracy
Excerpt: /269/ Three Articles: The 90s
On the whatever decade.
People are turning back to reinterpret the 1990s. Clearly, they were peak End of History years. But does that mean that no politics actually happened? If it's the period of the cultural turn, does that mean we should seek to understand that decade culturally?
And what are the political consequences of how we interpret the 1990s?
The 1990s: An age without qualities, Gavin Jacobson, New Statesman (attached)
Were the 1990s Really Devoid of Politics?, Ryan Zickgraf, Jacobin
The ‘90s: The decade that never ended, Jason Farago, BBC
Anti-Politics & Beyond (Munich Book Launch - Audio)
If the End of History was characterised by post-politics, and the 'populist decade' of the 2010s dominated by anti-politics, then how should we understand more recent phenomena? Are the following of a qualitatively different nature to anti-politics, namely: the intensification of culture wars, growing polarisation that does not always align neatly with class, of increasingly hysterical and personalised politics, and of the competition between escalating emergency politics?
To commemorate the publication of the German edition of The End of the End of History, co-author Alex Hochuli was in conversation with historian of political thought, Anton Jäger at the Monacensia in Munich.
Ruling Class Hysteria (Berlin Book Launch - Audio)
To commemorate the publication of the German edition of The End of the End of History, co-author Alex Hochuli was in conversation with David Broder, Europe editor of Jacobin Magazine at Spike Magazine, Berlin.
The crumbling of the liberal, technocratic order over the past decade has led to a variety of hysterical reactions from the establishment. Faced with new challenges to their authority, they have reacted by calling their opponents "fascist", blaming misinformation or adopting conspiracy theories of their own. How are we to understand these reactions and the apparent conflict between neoliberal technocracy and "populism"?
/268/ Emergency vs Emergency ft. Geoff Shullenberger
[Live events in Germany: Berlin / Munich]
On emergency politics today.
We talk to Geoff Shullenberger about competing emergency politics, left and right. Should politics be enjoyable and provide a frisson of transgression, or not? Is bare life all that's on offer? And is declaring the predominance of 'emergency politics' itself an emergency a problem?
How We Forgot Foucault, American Affairs
The Crisis of the Crisis, The New Atlantis
/267/ South Africa Mafia State ft. Benjamin Fogel
On crumbling state authority.
Benjamin Fogel is back on the podcast to talk us through how South Africa has gone from the hopes of post-apartheid to the Durban riots of 2021. How have corruption, criminal networks, Indian oligarchs, and political forces combined to shatter any sense of a national project? We also discuss the role of xenophobia and particularist and racial politics in today's South Africa.
Readings & Links:
/27/ After Zuma ft. Sean Jacobs
The insurrection in South Africa is about more than freeing Zuma, Benjamin Fogel, Al Jazeera
Dons have KZN in their grip — and Don of Dons Jacob Zuma has the tightest grip, Chris Makhaye, Daily Maverick
No two elephants are alike, Ryan Brunette, Africa Is A Country
Rising vigilantism: South Africa is reaping the fruits of misrule, Landau & Misago, The Conversation
This Podcast should be mandatory listening for Americans who are trying to build a Left
As a US citizen who spent decades of my younger adult living in the East End amongst Leftists, I find these guys a breath of calm, fresh air.
Bright young leftists who can still be funny.
As my (English) husband once asked years ago, “What’s up with all of these overly sincere, humourless, American hippies?”
I answered, “How would I know? I grew up in rural Wisconsin.”
It’s good to feel like I’m home Aufa Bunga people.
Great show, problematic feed
Great show; very entertaining and enlightening. My one issue though is that the feed is a complete mess. New episodes are hard to find, while older ones are hidden under a heap of 2-minute trailers. I’m not sure if I should blame the show, or the way iTunes catalogues old episodes. Either way, if you can manage to find new, complete episodes, this pod is gold! Keep it up lads!
Entertaining, educational, iffy politics
Find the podcast quite compelling and entertaining. Central thrust of the project (an autopsy of a Left they have separated themselves from) contains a lot of media class myopia (are teenagers on twitter canceling you really the driving cause of the left’s evaporating social base? Is Owen Jones a cause or might he be a symptom?) but the charm of the hosts and the level of analysis means there’s something valuable in most episodes.
Do wish they would stop referring to the left as “they,” though. If you’re a Marxist you’re on the left whether you care to be or not, and the purpose of Marxist analysis is, after all, to change the world rather than describe it in various ways via interviews with intelligent guests.