In “I Am Not Your Negro,” Haitian director Raoul Peck, through the lens of writer James Baldwin, examines why racial oppression is at the heart of the American experience.
Against the Grain
12:00 PM Pacific Time: Mondays to Wednesdays
In-depth analysis and commentary on a variety of matters — political, economic, social, and cultural — important to progressive and radical thinking and activism. Against the Grain is co-produced and co-hosted by Sasha Lilley and C.S. Soong.
Selections from Voices That Change the World, a comprehensive 1300-hour Pacifica Radio Archives audio compilation featuring hundreds of thinkers, critics, activists, writers, and performers.
He was a trailblazing critic of imperialism, but chances are you’ve never heard his name. The radical Japanese journalist Kotoku Shusui, who moved from socialism to anarchism, wrote a seminal critique of imperialism — before Hobson and Lenin — and led the movement against empire in Japan. Robert Tierney discusses Kotoku, his classic work Imperialism, … Continued
As universities become increasingly infiltrated and transformed by capitalist logics, what do free universities add to the educational, social, and political landscape? Fern Thompsett, a Ph.D. student at McGill University, co-founded a free university in Australia; she’s also researched more than two dozen free university projects in North America. Thompsett describes both the free-of-charge and … Continued
It’s been called the greatest political film of all time. The Battle of Algiers, which was released fifty years ago, told the story of the Algerian people’s struggle against French colonialism. It became an instant classic and touchstone for radical movements in the Third World and the international left. And it became a tool for … Continued
What happens when “reason” is in decline, when the world appears to be moving in the direction of irrationality and political pathology? Martin Jay discusses how two Frankfurt School thinkers, Theodor Adorno and Jürgen Habermas, tried to salvage a critical version of reason. Whereas Adorno looked to art and aesthetics, Habermas appealed to practices of … Continued
Americans are struggling economically and personal finance gurus think that’s our fault. If we could just save money from small indulgences — like lattes — and sock it away in the stock market, we could end up millionaires. So claim the likes of Suze Orman and Robert Kiyosaki. But, according to journalist Helaine Olen, such … Continued
Fannie Lou Hamer and Thomas Merton were both, as Albert Raboteau puts it, religious radicals. Hamer became an outspoken advocate for racial and social justice; she risked her life to secure voting rights and political equality for African Americans. Thomas Merton was a Catholic contemplative who spoke out forcefully against racism, militarism, and rampant consumerism. … Continued
In 1871, the lower classes of the city of Paris rose up and established a worker-run government. They flew the red flag, championed the rights of women, and separated church and state. The Paris Commune had little time to put into place many of the Communards’ ideals before it was violently crushed by the French … Continued
Why didn’t Karl Marx and Mikhail Bakunin get along? What accounts for the conflict between the two thinkers that led to the momentous breakup of the First International in 1872? Mark Leier discusses and compares the backgrounds and ideas of Bakunin and Marx; he argues that they were more similar than most believe. He also … Continued