Labour, Environment, & Neoliberalism (with Erik Loomis)

This podcast conversation with Erik Loomis marks the end of the “Bedtime Stories” series. I’d like to revisit this and work up some more podcasts in the future—I enjoyed these conversations and interactions tremendously. I hope that individually and cumulatively they are informative and provoke responses to thinking about the past through a catastrophic lens.

This catastrophic conversation revisited class through a labour perspective. It is worth comparing Loomis’s discussion here with Malm’s reflections on capitalism. Loomis and Mizelle also overlap in their comments on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911. Loomis is an historian at the University of Rhode Island. He is the author of Empire of Timber: Labor Unions and the Pacific Northwest Forests
(Cambridge University Press) and Out of Sight: The Long and Disturbing Story of Corporations Outsourcing Catastrophe (The New Press). He is currently finishing up a new book, American History in Ten Strikes, which will also be published by the New Press (2018).

Previous

5 September: “Dysfunctional Relationships: Love Songs for Pesticides” (with Michelle Mart)

12 September: “Catastrophic Environmentalism: Histories of the Cold War” (with Jacob Hamblin)

19 September: “Disaster Narratives: Predictions, Preparedness, & Lessons” (with Scott Knowles)

26 September: “Catastrophe in the Age of Revolutions” (with Cindy Ermus)

3 October: “Histories of the Future & the Anthropocene” (with Libby Robin)

10 October: “Günther Anders and the Catastrophic Imagination” (with Jason Dawsey)

17 October: “Convergence: Capitalism, Climate, Catastrophe” (with Andreas Malm)

24 October: “Catastrophic Meanings: Consuming the Great Flood of 1927” (with Susan Scott Parrish)

31 October: “Disaster, Race, & Diaspora” (with Richard Mizelle, Jr.)

“Disaster, Race, & Diaspora” (with Richard Mizelle, Jr.)

Last night turned into this morning turned into this afternoon turned into this evening. I am late in posting this week’s podcast, with Richard Mizelle, Jr. This is the second podcast on the great Mississippi Flood of 1927, which was a focal point of my teaching and reading interest last winter. That was married with a deep dive into the blues. All of which drew me to Mizelle’s book, Backwater Blues: The Mississippi Flood of 1927 in the African American Imagination. Mizelle, an historian at the University of Houston, is the author of one of the very coolest lines in academic history. In his introduction he writes: “Contrary to what your parents told you as a kid, there was such a thing as the boogie man. His name was John Lee Hooker.”

This podcast picks up on a number of themes explored in the previous podcast with Susan Scott Parrish. But the discussion turns to questions of public health, diaspora, and, of course, the blues.

Next week: 7 November: “Labour, Environment, & Neoliberalism” (with Erik Loomis)

Previous:

5 September: “Dysfunctional Relationships: Love Songs for Pesticides” (with Michelle Mart)

12 September: “Catastrophic Environmentalism: Histories of the Cold War” (with Jacob Hamblin)

19 September: “Disaster Narratives: Predictions, Preparedness, & Lessons” (with Scott Knowles)

26 September: “Catastrophe in the Age of Revolutions” (with Cindy Ermus)

3 October: “Histories of the Future & the Anthropocene” (with Libby Robin)

10 October: “Günther Anders and the Catastrophic Imagination” (with Jason Dawsey)

17 October: “Convergence: Capitalism, Climate, Catastrophe” (with Andreas Malm)

24 October: “Catastrophic Meanings: Consuming the Great Flood of 1927” (with Susan Scott Parrish)