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A new series of talks by David Runciman, in which he explores some of the most important thinkers and prominent ideas lying behind modern politics – from Hobbes to Gandhi, from democracy to patriarchy, from revolution to lock down. Plus, he talks about the crises – revolutions, wars, depressions, pandemics – that generated these new ways of political thinking. From the team that brought you Talking Politics: a history of ideas to help make sense of what’s happening today.
 
In this podcast, Matthew Rothwell, author of Transpacific Revolutionaries: The Chinese Revolution in Latin America, explores the global history of ideas related to rebellion and revolution. The main focus of this podcast for the near future will be on the history of the Chinese Revolution, going all the way back to its roots in the initial Chinese reactions to British imperialism during the Opium War of 1839-1842, and then following the development of the revolution and many of the ideas tha ...
 
We explore ideas and practices once believed to be true but no longer. Each dead idea is explored in all its glorious eccentricity. For example, discover miasma, the theory that plague comes from stinky air; or the medical diagnosis of hysteria, which holds that women's wombs wander around their bodies causing trouble. Join us on a fun romp through the history of ideas that didn’t quite stand the test of time.
 
From its ancient origins in the 1495 founding of King’s College through to thriving global endeavours in 2020, the University of Aberdeen boasts a historic legacy spanning 525 years of leading and engaging with intellectual currents of the wider world. Yet quatercentenary and quincentennial memorial histories of the University of Aberdeen portray the institution from a regional and national perspective. The Aberdeen University librarian between 1894 and 1926, Peter John Anderson (1853-1926), ...
 
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In this special team-up podcast episode, Jason of HOBI teams with Brad of the Cinema Guys to chat with Jed Shepherd the writer/producer of the Shudder original film Host as well as the director of the upcoming live-action game Ghosts! Take a listen as we discuss his inspiration for creating all things horror as well as not only what's next in film,…
 
The planning and execution of the Autumn Harvest Uprising in southern Hubei province. Further reading: Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1928 Tony Saich, The Rise to Power of the Chinese Communist Party Roy Hofheinz, “The Autumn Harvest Insurrection” Timothy Cheek’s Introduction to Pang Xianzhi and…
 
A special episode in which David answers some of the audience's questions about the second series of History of Ideas. From how he chooses which writers and works to talk about, to whether Boris Johnson is the ultimate Benthamite and whether the idea of a pleasure machine isn't - in fact - totally rational. We really enjoyed making these podcasts f…
 
The HOBI gang is fired up and even a little angry this week as Jason is the only person that cares about Marvel's Shang-Chi, Jeff ranks the Mortal Kombat films, we go down a rabbit hole of ape movies and an even bigger rabbit hole about television moms! The guys get angrier at Edward's custom order at Starbucks, a new Red Sonja is finally being mad…
 
Background on Qu Qiubai before he became Communist leader in 1927. Further reading: Tsi-an Hsia, The Gate of Darkness: Studies on the Leftist Literary Movement Jonathan Spence, The Gate of Heavenly Peace: The Chinese and Their Revolution Paul Pickowicz, Marxist Literary Thought in China: The Influence of Ch'u Ch'iu-pai Steve Smith, A Road Is Made: …
 
The HOBI gang is without guests this week but they are fired up over rebooting the Jetsons and Night Court, requesting a Black Panther film set during the second World War and Amy the Gorilla from Congo beating Godzilla! Plus the ratings are in for Jeopardy hosts, achieving a life goal at the grocery store, expansion in the MLB, recap Marvel Phase …
 
The HOBI gang is in summer mode as they are cool and relaxed this week! The guys welcome film critic Scab Jeff to recap the Academy Awards, discuss the finale of the Falcon and the Winter Soldier, the next host of Jeopardy and the downfall of the Reds. Plus Ed Brubaker is mad at Marvel (again!), John Cena is divine intervention powers, Mortal Komba…
 
Mao takes a critical position on the military line pursued by the Comintern and the Politburo. Also, the issue of scapegoating individuals as a way of dealing with repudiated party policies. Further reading: Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1928 C. Martin Wilbur, The Nationalist Revolution in Chin…
 
The HOBI gang is all back together again this week and making up for lost time! The guys are debating the best Pixar films, no cares about a Friends reunion, the Intern is excited about Fast and Furious in space, Kevin James continues to taunt Jason and the quick death of the Super League! Plus Kevin Smith is in the NFT business, macaroni and chees…
 
Judith Shklar’s Ordinary Vices (1984) made the case that the worst of all the vices is cruelty. But that meant we needed to be more tolerant of some other common human failings, including snobbery, betrayal and hypocrisy. David explores what she had to say about some of the other authors in this series – including Bentham and Nietzsche – and asks w…
 
The new policy of mass uprisings against the Guomindang is decided upon, and Mao’s comments at the meeting stand out for their epistemology. Further reading: Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1928 C. Martin Wilbur, The Nationalist Revolution in China, 1923-1928 Tony Saich, The Rise to Power of the …
 
The HOBI Gang is down hosts this week as Jeff and The Intern welcome Scab Jeff to help make sense of what's going on. The gang is discussing the upcoming Oscars, a little Invincible, Jason's biggest faults, and last week's Listener Feedback. We cover Nicknames in this week's Top 5. This episode is sponsored by The Cincinnati Comic Expo!…
 
Robert Nozick’s Anarchy, State and Utopia (1974) was designed as a rebuttal to Rawls but it was so much more than that. It offered a defence of the minimal state that appealed to the writers of The Sopranos and a vision of utopia that appealed to the founders of Silicon Valley. David explores what Nozick wanted to achieve and identifies the surpris…
 
HOBI is missing a few hosts so they welcome back number one Disney fan/expert Doug as well as first-time guest Sean of Pittsburgh Nerd Podcast! The chaps are talking Disney reopening, gender reveals continue to fail, and we catch up on the Falcon and the Winter Soldier series! Plus the gang tries to understand the return of CSI, Knives Out sequels …
 
John Rawls’s A Theory of Justice (1971) changed the face of modern political philosophy by reinventing the question of what constitutes fairness. From ‘the veil of ignorance’ to ‘reflective equilibrium’ it introduced new ways of thinking about the problem of justice along with new problems for thinking about politics. David discusses Rawls’s influe…
 
The HOBI Gang goes all out this week as Joel and Mike from the podcast 40 Going On 14 joins them to talk Invincible, Heels, who won last week's Draft Day of Riverdale and why Blake keeps being invited onto podcasts! Plus the gang discusses the latest casting news including the film debut of Doctor Fate, Keanu Reeves has a new comic book property, l…
 
Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex (1949) is one of the founding texts of modern feminism and one of the most important books of the twentieth century. It covers everything from ancient myth to modern psychoanalysis to ask what the relations between men and women have in common with other kinds of oppression, from slavery to colonialism. It also o…
 
The HOBI Gang is celebrating Spring as the countdown is on for a return to the BOB Studios! The gang this week reviews The Falcon and the Winter Soldier on Disney Plus, our favorite monster in the Godzilla universe, draft a new Riverdale, and groan about more Game of Thrones shows. Plus we give tips on how to keep a pet squirrel, review Snyder's Ju…
 
In this year of the 525th anniversary of the University of Aberdeen, its Department of Economics is also celebrating an anniversary – the centenary of the Jaffrey Chair in Political Economy. This podcast by Economics Professor Keith Bender highlights the life of Sir Thomas Jaffrey Bt, the early 20th century Aberdonian banker and philanthropist who …
 
Joseph Schumpeter’s Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy (1942) contains a famous, and minimal, definition of democracy as the competition between political elites to sell themselves to the electorate. Schumpeter wanted to debunk more elevated ideas of the common good and the popular will. Why then has his theory proved so influential for people who…
 
Cairns Craig, Glucksman Professor of Irish and Scottish Studies, recounts the influence of the first holder of the chair in English Literature at Aberdeen University, Professor H.J.C. Grierson. Grierson was closely involved with major poets of the early twentieth century, such as W.B. Yeats and T.S. Eliot, because of the influence of his edition of…
 
Episode 378 is here! The HOBI Gang is without guidance this week as it's another Wildcard episode! The gang is talking whatever they want, including previewing the MLB season, current events with idiots, quarantine reviews, and Luke Skywalker takes on the Scarlett Witch. Plus the guys played Blood on the Clocktower, we GoFundMe for Nic Cage, Jason …
 
Carl Schmitt’s The Concept of the Political (1932) has been hugely influential on the left as well as the right of political debate despite the fact that its author joined the Nazi Party shortly after its publication. David explores the origins of Schmitt’s ideas in the debates about the Weimar Republic and examines his critique of liberal democrac…
 
The HOBI gang is back to their roots with no guests this week, but plenty of shenanigans! The crew is debating most surprise wrestler appearances, answer Star Trek questions, Pepe Le Pew is erased and we recap WandaVision! Plus the gang talks the new X-Men movie, Stephen King teams with Stranger Things, Pinocchio gets creepier and we list our Top F…
 
Rosa Luxemburg wrote ‘The Russian Revolution’ (1918) from a jail cell in Germany. In it she described how the Bolshevik revolution was going to change the world but also explained how and why it was already going badly wrong. David explores the origins of Luxemburg’s insights, from her experiences in Poland to her love/hate relationship with Lenin.…
 
The HOBI gang is still partying from the Golden Globes as they welcome film critic Scab Jeff into the studio! The guys talk favorite Parks and Rec character, recap the winners of the Golden Globes, and Charlie Sheen regrets some of his life choices. Plus the gang talks Tom and Jerry ruling the box office, Red Sonja is back, and we list our Top Five…
 
Friedrich Nietzsche’s masterpiece The Genealogy of Morality (1887) sets out to explain where ideas of good and evil come from and why they have left human beings worse off. He traces their origins in what he calls the slave revolt in morality. David examines the ways Nietzsche’s story unsettles almost everything about modern social conventions and …
 
The HOBI gang welcomes Tony from the Salty Language Podcast onto the show this week! The guys discuss the chance of Bigfoot being real, Wanda is turning people into mutants in WandaVision, we find one good thing in Justice League, and Gremlins gets animated! Plus we talk bad waxing ideas, the Box Office Report may be fraudulent, and list our Top Fi…
 
Samuel Butler’s Erewhon (1872) is a strange and unsettling book about a world turned upside down. Usually classified as utopian or dystopian fiction, it also contains an eerie prophecy about the coming of intelligent machines. David explores the origins of Butler’s ideas and asks what they have to teach us about the oddity of how we choose to organ…
 
The mutiny that founded the Chinese Red Army. Further reading: Tony Saich, The Rise to Power of the Chinese Communist Party Stuart Schram, ed., Mao’s Road to Power, vol. 3: From the Jinggangshan to the Establishment of the Jiangxi Soviets, July 1927-December 1930 Marcia Ristaino, China’s Art of Revolution: The Mobilization of Discontent, 1927 and 1…
 
The HOBI Gang welcomes back one of our favorite guests, Steve and Izzy from Everything I Learned from Movies podcast! The gang talks what series they are most looking forward to returning, Steve discusses PodcArt Fest, eating a peanut butter and mayo sandwich, and debating the power of the Scarlett Witch in WandaVision! Plus the pressure on social …
 
My Bondage and My Freedom (1855) by the former slave Frederick Douglass was the second of his three autobiographies and the one that contained his most radical ideas. In this episode David explores how Douglass used his life story not only to expose the horror of slavery but to champion a new approach to abolishing it. The name for this approach: p…
 
This podcast explores the life and influence of the Rev. James Ramsay, an Anglican priest, ship’s surgeon, and pioneering abolitionist who was educated at King’s College between 1749 and 1753. Ramsay’s anti-slavery convictions were born out of the experience of fifteen years as a preacher and medical attendant to the enslaved population of the isla…
 
The HOBI Gang is braving the arctic cold and snow, well virtually, as Jason gets excited for Riverdale's 7-year time jump, Jeff defends Scarlett Witch's powers while reviewing the latest episode of WandaVision, and we welcome back a beloved listener! The guys also debate the early Worsley nominees, Cloverfield gets a sequel that no one cares about,…
 
Jeremy Bentham’s Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation is a definitive early statement of the basis of utilitarianism: how do we achieve the greatest happiness of the greatest number? David looks at Bentham’s rationale for this approach and the many criticisms it has faced. Bentham has often been accused of reducing politics to m…
 
As the Wuhan regime collapses, so does the united front. Soviet advisors leave China, Chinese Communists go underground. The purge strikes Wuhan. Further reading: C. Martin Wilbur, The Nationalist Revolution in China, 1923-1928 Anna Louise Strong, China’s Millions Vera Vladimirovna Vishnyakova-Akimova, Two Years in Revolutionary China, 1925-1927 C.…
 
The HOBI Gang welcomes their intern back this week so hopefully the podcast doesn't go off the rails again! The gang reviews the latest episode of WandaVision, mourn Hal Holbrook, Dustin Diamond along with several others, but we do have good news on the future of Black Panther. Jason still can't get past Sons of Anarchy influence on Yellowstone, Br…
 
Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Discourse on Inequality (also known as the Second Discourse) tells the story of all human history to answer one simple question: how did we end up in such an unequal world? David explores the steps Rousseau traces in the fall of humankind and asks whether this is a radical alternative to the vision offered by Hobbes or just …
 
The Comintern’s guidance falls short in response to the ongoing massacre of peasants. Further reading: C. Martin Wilbur, The Nationalist Revolution in China, 1923-1928 Donald Jordan, The Northern Expedition: China’s National Revolution of 1926-1928 Alexander Pantsov, The Bolsheviks and the Chinese Revolution, 1919-1927 Some names from this episode:…
 
The HOBI Gang is without their intern this week so the podcast goes off the rails pretty quickly! The guys pay tribute to Larry King, their Aaron Sorkin poll gets overrun by West Wing fanatics, give a detailed review of WandaVision and we reboot our life! Plus the gang celebrate their 7th anniversary of the podcast with a trip down memory lane, the…
 
In 1773 James Beattie, professor of Moral Philosophy and Logic at Marischal College, Aberdeen, visited London to petition (successfully) for a royal pension on the back of his sudden fame as author of An Essay on the Nature and Immutability of Truth, In Opposition to Sophistry and Scepticism (1770), an attack on the ‘infidelity’ of the times, and t…
 
This episode is an appendix to episode 51, and consists of a booklet written by Mao Zedong describing the life of a tenant-peasant in Hunan. This episode should help you to concretely picture peasant life in Hunan during the period we have been discussing in the podcast, while also giving a short example of Mao Zedong’s practice of social investiga…
 
Mao’s experience on the Wuhan Guomindang Left government’s Land Commission, with some comparative remarks on land reform in Communist thought. Further reading: Tony Saich, The Rise to Power of the Chinese Communist Party Stuart Schram, ed., Mao’s Road to Power, vol. 2: National Revolution and Social Revolution, December 1920-June 1927 C. Martin Wil…
 
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