Tag Archives: literature

The moral of the story is… How Aesop confronts empire, with Carlo Gébler on AEWCH 78!

30 Jul
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Friends,
How exciting to welcome fiction writer, memoirist, and Aesop scholar Carlo Gébler to AEWCH to discuss how Aesop’s fables present insight into fighting empire, how the powerful tell their stories, and more!
Carlo is a staple here in the Irish literary landscape. The son of famed Irish author Edna O’Brien and famed/infamous Irish author Ernest Gébler, Carlo was named after Karl Marx and has taught writing for years, including in prisons. He’s written nearly 30 books for adults and children plus plays in total. His latest book, Aesop’s Fables: The Cruelty of the Gods, which is beautifully (and intensely!) illustrated by Gavin Weston, retells 190 (!) of Aesop’s tales, adding humor and amplifying the brutality of each one.
But, as you’ll hear on the episode, Carlo isn’t just retelling these tales for entertainment (though they are extremely entertaining), he sees in them strategies for resistance and hints at how power works. And Carlo reads a few of Aesop’s fables, including “The Clever Lamb and the Wolf”, “The Frogs Who Demanded A King”, “The Flute Playing Wolf and the Dancing Kid”, and my favorite, “The Fox and the Farmer”.
Until next week,
XO
CH
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QUEER NON-BINARY SEX REVOLUTION NOW! It’s Andrea Lawlor on AEWCH!

18 Jun
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Friends,
Just when I felt like I was getting bored with queer culture, I was thrown back into it and out of my blinkered, jaded bullshit by the queer radical author, Andrea Lawlor and their novel of full frontal sexual liberation, Paul Takes The Form Of A Mortal Girl! It’s a novel about a shapeshifting postpunk anarchist, and is, I believe, more like me than any other novel. In some ways, this is the most sexual episode I’ve ever done, because we center sex the whole time. I cannot recommend Andrea’s novel enough. It captures a time, but more importantly, captures a style of spirit and a current of queerness that is so vital for the world’s anatomy today.
We talk
  • desire and detachment
  • my crush on a frat boy singing “Rich Girl” by Hall & Oates
  • centering sex in our politics and literature
  • how “sex = death” has been replaced by “sex = harm” (and how that marks progress and stagnancy)
  • sex as a teacher
  • where our limits as readers are or should be, and how hyper-literalness harms our experience
  • how sex and transformation relate to fairy tales
  • is trans a universal condition?
  • how sexual liberation allows us to be full human beings
  • indie rock and zine culture as queer expression
  • how queerness brings intensity, relief, and brilliance into living

SHOW NOTES are HERE.

XO
CH

  • JR

The Occult Significance Of Ulysses

16 Jun
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If you’d like my recorded online course, Reading Ulysses With Conner Habib, it’s just $20 for six videos, further reading, and more. Email me at againsteveryonewithconnerhabib @ gmail.com
Happy Bloomsday, everyone! Here’s an Against Saturdays episode on a Sunday!
All about why people who are into the occult and magic should read Joyce’s Ulysses. Actually, why everyone should read it.
XO CH
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The Queer Esoteric Power of Poetry! It’s D.A. Powell on AEWCH 73!

11 Jun

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AGAINST EVERYONE WITH CONNER HABIB 73: D.A. POWELL or THE QUEER ESOTERIC POWER OF POETRY

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Your Patreon contribution goes a long way to supporting not just to the podcast, but to my writing and other work as well. If you find something of value on my show, give back and support the many hours of free podcast content and other public output that I offer every month for the price of a latte or cocktail or lunch.

Pay for the podcasts you love by signing up for my Patreon today.

Friends,

So excited to share what is one of my very favorite episodes of AEWCH with you, discussing poetry, the esoteric, the strange, and the occult with poet D.A. Powell (AKA Doug)!

Doug is the author of multiple books of poetry, and is best know for his Repast trilogy, including the books Tea, Lunch, and Cocktails, which have all be described as potent AIDS-era poetry. But what makes Doug such a profound thinker and poet (aside from his incredible poetry, of course!), is that he refuses to have his poems reduced to political polemic, even as they evince politics. Instead, Doug’s poems and Doug himself insist on the myriad of meanings each poem presents, and in that way, transmutes poetry into an alchemical act.

In addition to talking, Doug reads many of his poems, starting with the excellent “The Kiwi Comes To Gridley, CA” which is in his (also excellent) collection, Useless Landscape: A Guide For Boys. He also reads “Why We Have No Future,” “Mass For Pentecost: Canitcle for Birds & Waters”, “[strange flower in my hands. porphory shell. clipped wool.]”, “Don’t Touch My Junk”, and “Slut”.

We talk about

  • how poetry can’t be reduced to its contents or our current political situation
  • why plants are tops (really!)
  • those plaintive sighs at poetry readings
  • how the political overtakes and consumes all other meanings
  • loving and hating what you write
  • why poetry is not metaphor
  • how poems destroy the focus on a single point and expand the cosmos
  • how are relates to the Holy Ghost and the angels
  • the problem with the lack in psychoanalysis
  • how to hex people and cure people with words
  • what rhymes are
  • The secret poetry of the 1960s Batman and Robin TV series
  • Christ’s foreskin (really!)
  • poem-ography

XO

CH

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Can art contain evil? I explore mystery and murder with crime writer Sara Gran on AEWCH 61!

5 Mar

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PATRONS GET ACCESS TO THE FULL YOUTUBE VERSION HERE

Friends,

When you follow a mystery, you see that’s it’s unending. And what better explorer of mysteries than acclaimed mystery writer Sara Gran, whose mystery and crime books rove through philosophy, the occult, and the hardboiled on their way to the murderer.

Sara is the author of mysteries and horror, from her acclaimed Claire DeWitt series (start with the excellent Claire Dewitt and the City of the Dead), to her shiveringly creepy demonic possession tale, Come Closer.

We talk about why detectives in fiction are always wounded, how criminals are materialists but detectives are spiritual, being an outsider, the philosopher she invented named Jacques Silette, the unknowingness of writing, how our creative projects becomes spells & become our friends, whether or not people actually succeed in Hollywood, the difference between real genre and mere spectacle, fairy tales, why political solutions don’t work, why the presence of the dead is healing, why people can’t accept the supernatural even in fiction, Suspiria vs Texas Chainsaw Massacre vs Hereditary, Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion, how art responds to and creates evil, and how psychoanalysis connects to the Western esoteric tradition and yoga.

Click HERE for show notes!

XO
CH

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9 Oct

AGAINST EVERYONE WITH CONNER HABIB 44: KELLY LINK & JORDY ROSENBERG

or A VAMPIRE IS A THEORY

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Friends,
This is one of my very favorite conversations – I can’t believe I had the opportunity to speak with MacArthur fellow Kelly Link and brilliant new novelist Jordy Rosenberg! We had the conversation just a few days before Link’s MacArthur Award was announced, and just a few days after Jordy’s book was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Award!
Kelly Link is one of the 2018 MacArthur fellows. She’s the author of four collection of short stories, Stranger Things Happen, Magic for Beginners, Pretty Monsters, and Get In Trouble. She’s also the co-editor and co-owner (with her husband Gavin Grant) of Small Beer Press and the literary magazine Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet.
Jordy Rosenberg is the author of the absolutely excellent anti-capitlism, anti-authoritarian, love story, Confessions of the Fox. and of the nonfiction book, Critical Enthusiasm: Capital Accumulation and the Transformation of Religious Passion.
How fantastic elements in fiction can fall into reinforcing political power; how capitalism works like magic; how we turn social forces into entities; when characters becomes concepts and vice versa; autotheory; scent, senses, and pleasure in fiction; Mandy and zombies; murder; disassociation as a strategy; the evolution of consciousness through novels; and a whooooole lot of literature.
XO CH

How did love change time and space? My conversation with historian and literary theorist Stephen Kern on the latest Against Everyone with Conner Habib!

25 Sep

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Friends,

If you don’t yet know historian, literary theorist, and interdisciplinary intellectual, Stephen Kern, I’m so excited to introduce you to him.

Stephen teaches at Ohio State University, and his books, including The Culture of Time and Space, 1880-1918 ,  A Cultural History of Causality: Science, Murder Novels, and Systems of Thought  and The Culture of Love: Victorians to Moderns, are wide-ranging explorations of history, especially in how it relates to concepts of time and space.

In this episode, we talk about psychology and phenomenology of time, how love has become more authentic and changed the experience of time, the vulgarity and beauty of Joyce and Ulysses, what Christianity has made available and closed off when it comes to intimacy, the struggles of the Victorian era, just how real the concepts of “modernist” and “romantic” and “Victorian” periods are, how pain and time are interconnected, why a reevaluation of time and space needs to be part of labor activism, and more!

I was alarmed to find that there weren’t many podcasts or interviews with Stephen available online (although he is known and respected in literary and historian and other academic communities) so I was determined to bring his work to a broader audience.

For show notes (this time there are LOTS of links to books!), click here.

XO
CH

SK