Against the Grain – October 25, 2021

Against the Grain

A radio and web media project whose aim is to provide in-depth analysis and commentary on a variety of matters — political, economic, social and cultural — important to progressive and radical thinking and activism.

Upcoming Episode

The Republican Party is gripped by a hatred of immigrants. But geographer Reece Jones argues it has not always been so. Instead, one man, the late John Tanton, was responsible for making nativism appear a central concern of conservatives, by propagating scores of anti-immigrant organizations, some which eventually helped staff the Trump Administration. And, as … Continued


According to Joseph Masco, the two key existential dangers of our time are climate disruption and nuclear weapons. The first, he maintains, is the product of petrochemical capitalism; around the second an elaborate, fear-based U.S. national security culture has been constructed. Masco contends that addressing these twin crises requires grasping their origins and pursuing fundamental structural … Continued


Occupy Oakland took over the plaza in front of City Hall ten years ago. Emily Brissette discusses what animated and what constrained the movement; she also considers the debate that arose after stay-away orders were issued against dozens of Occupiers. That debate, contends Brissette, featured conflicting notions of what constitutes legitimate political activity. Social Justice (Photo … Continued


Twenty years ago, the inaugural World Social Forum was convened in Porto Alegre, Brazil. Jackie Smith describes some of the networking processes and movement-building dynamics fostered by that gathering and its successors. She also discusses three strands of organizing directly influenced by the Forum: the Right to the City movement, Via Campesina, and indigenous people’s movements. … Continued