podcast

Ep. 30: Shakesepare’s King Lear

Brian is joined by guest George Eckerle, St. John’s grad and co-founder (with Brian) of the Plato Project, a series of online seminars for discussion of Plato’s complete works. In this episode they discuss one of William Shakespeare’s most well-known tragedies, King Lear.

Referenced Links: Peter Burke version of King Lear – https://youtu.be/0DWCn6H_KZM
Ismail Kadare “Essays on World Literature” – https://www.amazon.com/Essays-World-Literature-Aeschylus-Shakespeare/dp/1632061740

Ep. 29: Emerson’s Divinity School Address

How does speech move the human soul? How can a leader use speech inspire others to action? Lise, Jeff, and Brian tackle those questions in their discussion of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s address to the graduating class of Harvard’s divinity school in 1838.

Ep. 28: Aristotle’s Politics Pt. 4

Jeff, Lise, and Brian continue our “close-read” series on Aristotle’s Politics. They continue to tackle Aristotle’s discussion of slavery, which raises questions about nature, law, and virtue.

Ep. 27: Interview with Jennifer Wright

Brian sits down with St. John’s College alum Jennifer Wright, who is a writer and the author of several books including It Ended Badly: Thirteen of the Worst Breakups in History. They talk about Ms. Wright’s informed and fun take on history, as well as her career path from SJC to professional writer.

Ep. 26: Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Fall of the House of Usher”

What is the relationship between the natural world and the human world? In this belated Halloween episode, Lise, Jeff, and Brian discuss Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Fall of the House of Usher.”

Ep. 25: Aristotle’s Politics, part 3

What is slavery? What does slavery have to do with the household or the state? Brian, Lise, and Jeff dig deeper into the Politics in Part 3 of their discussion of this series.

Ep. 24: Hemingway’s “Hills Like White Elephants”

How do human beings confront a crisis? Anne Kniggendorf and Matt Young join Brian for a conversation about Ernest Hemingway’s short story “Hills Like White Elephants.”

In case you missed it: Tune in to Brian’s interviews with Anne and Matt in previous episodes.

Ep. 23: Aristotle Politics Bk. I, part 2

“Man is by nature a political animal.”

Lise, Jeff, and Brian continue their conversation about Book I of Aristotle’s Politics, in which that famous line appears. They address Aristotle’s discussion of how a city comes to be, and his assertion that humans reach their full potential by living in a city.

Ep. 22: Interview with Matt Young

Brian interviews Matt Young, Marine Corps veteran, English professor, and author of Eat the Apple, an memoir that has been described as “The Iliad of the Iraq war.” They begin by discussing maintaining your humanity (or not) while serving in and returning from war. They go on to talk about the relationship between civilian and military citizens and how literature and writing can help veterans to manage anger and build empathy after military service.

Contains explicit language.

Ep. 21: Aristotle’s Politics Bk. I, part 1

Jeff, Lise, and Brian roll up their sleeves and dig in to Aristotle’s Politics. How are this and other “Great Books” relevant to how we live our lives? What is good political rule? What does it mean to be “just” within a political system? What problems can politics solve? What problems can it not solve? The team tackles those questions and much more in this episode.