Notebook on Cities and Culture
(Formerly The Marketplace of Ideas.) Colin Marshall sits down for in-depth conversations with cultural creators, internationalists, and observers of the urban scene all around Los Angeles and beyond.
The aesthetic lens: design philosopher Leonard Koren

Colin Marshall talks to design philosopher, bookmaker, and man of aesthetics Leonard Koren. In addition to publishing WET: The Magazine of Gourmet Bathing in the 1970s and providing consultancy on certain aesthetic matters, he’s created books like Wabi-Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets & Philosophers, How to Rake Leaves, and Undesigning the Bath. He takes on the very meaning of the term “aesthetics” in his latest title, Which “Aesthetics” Do You Mean?: Ten Definitions.

Direct download: MOI_Leonard_Koren.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:34am UTC

Getting between language, technology, art, and philosophy: artist/philosopher Jonathon Keats

Colin Marshall talks to conceptual artist and experimental philosopher Jonathon Keats. In addition to his well-known projects like selling his thoughts, creating pornography for plants, and genetically engineering god, Keats writes about language for Wired magazine. His new book, Virtual Words: Language from the Edge of Science and Technology, collects his examinations of neologisms both failed and successful from our age, including qubit, crowdsourcing and bacn.

Direct download: MOI_Jonathon_Keats.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:38am UTC

Failures, fiascos, and secret successes: A.V. Club critic Nathan Rabin

Colin Marshall talks to Nathan Rabin, head writer at The A.V. Club, the cultural magazine published by The Onion. There, he began a regular feature called My Year of Flops, in which he spent a year writing up movies that performed poorly at the box office and with critics, categorizing each as a “Failure”, “Fiasco”, or “Secret Success”. He continued the feature after a year, and has now collected pieces on Last Action HeroIshtarBattlefield Earth, and more into My Year of Flops: One Man’s Journey Deep into the Heart of Cinematic Failure.

Direct download: MOI_Nathan_Rabin.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:20pm UTC

Trailing the honorable "Chinese" detective: Charlie Chan scholar Yunte Huang

Colin Marshall talks to Yunte Huang, poet, professor of English at UC Santa Barbara, and author of Charlie Chan: The Untold Story of the Honorable Detective and His Rendezvous with American History. In the book, Huang combines a personal narrative of his research into American literature’s most beloved (and loathed) Chinese detective with the stories of E.D. Biggers, the writer who invented Charlie Chan, and Chang Apana, the real-life Chinese detective on the Honolulu Police whose exploits inspired him.

Direct download: MOI_Yunte_Huang.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:01pm UTC