17 episodes

A Bristol-based podcast chatting to writers and artists about their ideas, process and politics 🍑 hosted by Jessica Andrews and Jack Young.

With Storysmith bookshop, Bristol. https://storysmithbooks.com

Follow us on Twitter @buttons_tender and Instagram @tenderbuttonspodcast

Tender Buttons tenderbuttonspodcast

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

A Bristol-based podcast chatting to writers and artists about their ideas, process and politics 🍑 hosted by Jessica Andrews and Jack Young.

With Storysmith bookshop, Bristol. https://storysmithbooks.com

Follow us on Twitter @buttons_tender and Instagram @tenderbuttonspodcast

    017 Moses McKenzie: On Morality, Religion and Finding Space

    017 Moses McKenzie: On Morality, Religion and Finding Space

    In this episode, we discuss morality, religion and how to find space between conflicting social codes. We discuss the relationship between possibility, choice and criminality and the intersection of class and race in contemporary Bristol. We chat about what it means to write about a place that is not widely represented in fiction and developing a literary voice through hip-hop, grime and the Bible. We explore the potential of the novel to spark political change and the role of artistic responsibility.

    References

    An Olive Grove in Ends by Moses McKenzie

    Bristol Cable interview with Moses McKenzie

    • 39 min
    016 Yara Rodrigues Fowler: The Revolutionary Novel

    016 Yara Rodrigues Fowler: The Revolutionary Novel

    In this episode, we chat to Yara Rodrigues Fowler about the possibilites of the revolutionary novel. We speak about the potential of art as a driving force for change in the world, providing a space to desire beyond the borders of neoliberalism, imperialism and patriarchy. We talk about the ways in which novels can hold multiple dimensions of time and space and the role of formal experimentation and translation. We also discuss queer families and sisterhood and the ways in which these relationships might act as a 'little communism' of love, hinting at the possibilities of a world which is more free. We talk about the experience of writing and releasing a second novel and how to move through the publishing world while staying true to your own ideals. Yara's new novel, There Are More Things is published on 28th April.



    References

    There Are More Things by Yara Rodrigues Fowler

    Stubborn Archivist by Yara Rodrigues Fowler

    Anne Boyer 

    Saidiya Hartman

    Emma Goldman

    Lola Olufemi



    Listen for a 10% discount code on Yara's books at Storysmith books.

    • 46 min
    015 Lola Olufemi: The Radical Power of Imagination

    015 Lola Olufemi: The Radical Power of Imagination

    In this episode, we chat to Lola Olufemi about the radical potential of imagination. We speak about the relationship between theory and lived experience and how to deconstruct linear narratives of history and time. We talk about the possibilites language and art can bring to political movements and revolutionary ideas, as well as their limitations. We discuss how to move beyond the trappings of crisis and the importance of re-discovering play, both in writing and in our communities. We explore the role of collaboration within art and the reconfiguration of history as a kind of process which is constantly being re-made, through ancestral connection and the reanimation of archives. 

    References:

    A FLY Girls' Guide to University by Lola Olufemi, Odelia Younge, Waithera Sebatindira, Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan

    Feminism Interrupted by Lola Olufemi

    Experiments in Imagining Otherwise by Lola Olufemi

    Poetics of Relation by Edouard Glissant

    Dialogic Imagination by Mikhail Bakhtin

    June Jordan

    bell hooks

    Olive Morris

    As a Tender Buttons listener you can get 10% discount on Lola's work at Storysmith Books. Listen to the episode for more details and then head  to our page on the Storysmith website: storysmithbooks.com/tenderbuttons

    • 53 min
    014 Max Porter: Hybrid Forms

    014 Max Porter: Hybrid Forms

    In our first episode of Season Two, we chat to the inimitable Max Porter about pushing the limits of language, the role of art in ritual and collective experience and a search for joy within the mundane. We discuss the relationship between novel and stage, as well as the dichotomies of guilt and shame, care and kindness and humour as a form of resilience in a changing world. We talk about Max's desire to 'capture the pulse of feeling' in his book The Death of Francis Bacon and explore how to reinstate ritual in the ways we relate to landscape and the nonhuman world. We talk about writing as a mode of time travel and mourning as a kind of love.

    As a Tender Buttons listener you can get 10% discount on Max's work at Storysmith Books. Listen to the episode for more details and then head to our page on the Storysmith website: storysmithbooks.com/tenderbuttons



    REFERENCES: 

    Time Lived Without its Flow by Denise Riley

    Grief is the Thing with Feathers by Max Porter

    Lanny by Max Porter

    The Death of Francis Bacon by Max Porter

    • 58 min
    013 Samantha Walton: On Land Justice, Collective Wellbeing and Nature for Everyone

    013 Samantha Walton: On Land Justice, Collective Wellbeing and Nature for Everyone

    In this final episode of 2021 and our first season we chat to poet and academic Samantha Walton about democratising nature and landscape writing; green deprivation and the policing of green spaces and the dangers of individualised neoliberal 'nature cures', as discussed in her recent book Everybody Needs Beauty: In Search of the Nature Cure (Bloomsbury: 2021). We speak about the need to carve out space for grief amongst the climate crisis, how to emasculate mountain literature via Nan Shepherd and the space that poetry allows for articulating ambiguity and discomfort, as found in Samantha's hallucinatory poetic sequence Bad Moon (SPAM Press: 2020). 

    As a Tender Buttons listener you can get 10% discount on Samantha's book at Storysmith Books, listen in for more details and then head to our page on the Storysmith website: storysmithbooks.com/tenderbuttons

    References: 

    Everybody Needs Beauty: In Search of the Nature Cure (Bloomsbury:2021)

    Bad Moon (SPAM Press: 2020)

    Self-Heal (Boiler-House Press: 2018) 

    The Living Mountain by Nan Shepherd (Canongate)

    Samantha is also co-editor of Bristol-based small press SAD Press, whose work you can check out here. 

    • 52 min
    012 Jo Hamya: Myths of Meritocracy

    012 Jo Hamya: Myths of Meritocracy

    In this episode, we chat to author Jo Hamya about her brilliant novel, Three Rooms. We discuss her subversion of the bildungsroman narrative in order to interrogate the myth of linear progress and what it means to grow up in the wake of Blairism and the 2007-8 financial crash. We speak about the ways in which people might live in proximity to the upper echelons of society and yet never truly enter privileged spaces as a consequence of class, gender, race and politics. Through the lens of Brexit, Trump, Grenfell and the housing crisis, amidst soaring wealth inequality, Jo addresses the myth of meritocracy in contemporary Britain and interrogates the effects of social media upon our psyches. We chat about the notion of patriotism, the commodification of protest, the struggle to take up space in the modern metropolis and what it really means to inhabit a room of one's own in contemporary Britain. 

    References:

    Three Rooms by Jo Hamya

    Outline trilogy by Rachel Cusk

    As a Tender Buttons listener you can get 10% discount on Jo's book at Storysmith Books, listen in for more details and then head to our page on the Storysmith website: storysmithbooks.com/tenderbuttons

    Our theme music is a sample from Flotation by Ben Vince from his album The Purge.

    • 45 min

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