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Mouse Book Club
24 minutes | May 28, 2021
MBC-016-BARTLEBY by MELVILLE
45 minutes | Feb 12, 2021
MBC-013-HISTORY OF WOMEN'S SUFFRAGE PT. 1
Guest: Lori Ginzberg is Professor of History and Women, Gender and Sexual Studies at Penn State University. Professor Ginzberg is the author of numerous books and articles on the history of the Suffrage movement, including Elizabeth Cady Stanton: An American Life. Show Notes: Below are the topics covered in this conversation (with time stamps). National Parks Service Suffrage Centennial WEBSITE [2:50] Context from which demand for women's rights emerged [5:15] Founding myths of the Suffrage Movement [8:00] Confronting brutal facts of commemoration as a feminist killjoy [10:30] Caty Stanton's disastrous, degrading racism [16:00] Stanton's hostility to the clergy manifest in the Women's Bible [22:15] The real question: what is the commemoration, really? [28:10] What would Caty Stanton think of Universal Health Care? [29:24] Suffrage today: contemporary efforts to suppress the vote [34:47] First steps down the path of advocating women's rights? [40:40] Further Reading: Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All by Martha Jones Recasting the Vote: How Women of Color Transformed the Suffrage Movement by Cathleen D. Cahill Unceasing Militant: The Life of Mary Church Terrell by Alison Parker It's All About Love by Bell Hooks The Myth of Seneca Falls by Lisa Tetrault
27 minutes | Feb 10, 2021
MBC-012-THE ODYSSEY by Homer
Guest: Emily Austin is Assistant Professor of Classics at the University of Chicago, and author of Grief and the Hero: the Futility of Longing in the Iliad. Her area of expertise is emotion in the ancient world. Show Notes: Greek concepts of Hell [3:45] Repeating patterns of grief giving rise to anger [5:30] Digging into the character of Odysseus [14:20] Alice Oswald's Memorial as powerful excavation of Homer [16:450 Contemporary echoes of Electra [18:00] Jonathan Shay on Homer, PTSD, and Vietnam [20:00] Professor Austin's Odyssey translation recommendation: Robert Fitzgerald
40 minutes | Feb 8, 2021
MBC-011-INFERNO by Dante
GUEST William Cook is Professor of History, SUNY Geneseo (Retired). Professor Cook earned his PhD in History from Cornell and taught Medieval History for 42 years, lecturing and writing on Dante extensively for a variety of different audiences. Bill now runs the William Cook Foundation which provides educational opportunities in low resource communities. SHOW NOTES Profound lesson from teaching Dante to murderers [2:15] Overcoming the bitterness of factionalism [5:15] Dante's identity and the bygone Roman Empire [12:30] Hearing the Italian and breaking down structure [17:45] Good translations and don't get lost in the notes [20:30] Free Will understanding who you are [23:00] The journey of conversion [26:50] Finding your place in the Divine Comedy [33:15] Plug for the great work of the Bill Cook Foundation [37:00]
47 minutes | Jan 15, 2021
MBC-010 PARADISE LOST by Milton
Our guest for this episode is Professor Stanley Fish, who became one of the world's leading scholars of the work of John Milton upon the publication of Surprised by Sin: The Reader in Paradise Lost in 1967. His scholarly work on Milton is collected in the 2001 book How Milton Works. He has also solidified himself as one of the formidable public intellectuals of the last fifty years. SHOW NOTES How to accidentally becoming a world-class expert on Milton [2:00] A bracing description of how the character of Satan works [4:30] Viewing Satan after realizing you've been duped [12:30] Milton's techniques for describing the indescribable [16:23] Paradise Lost as a presentation of the political and cultural conflicts [20:28] Introducing George Herbert: champion of stringency of thought [27:00] The core challenge of cultural literacy in the 21st century [30:50] An individual's intimate and immediate relationship to liberty [37:42] Inner versus worldly prosperity. Achieving the paradise within [41:50]
28 minutes | Dec 4, 2020
MBC-009 ILIAD by Homer
Our Guest in this episode is Professor Emily Austin from the University of Chicago, and author of Grief and the Hero: the Futility of Longing in the Iliad.
39 minutes | Nov 30, 2020
MBC-008 SONG OF MYSELF by Whitman
38 minutes | Nov 25, 2020
MBC-007 SPECIMEN DAYS by Whitman
43 minutes | Nov 14, 2020
MBC-006 DEMOCRATIC VISTAS-Whitman
39 minutes | Oct 8, 2020
MBC-005-WALKING by Thoreau
46 minutes | Oct 2, 2020
MBC-004 THE ENCHIRIDION by Epictetus
38 minutes | Sep 24, 2020
MBC-003 THE DECAMERON by Boccaccio
37 minutes | Sep 22, 2020
MBC-002-THE PROPHET by Gibran
3 minutes | Sep 22, 2020
Introducing: The Mouse Book Club Podcast
54 minutes | Mar 24, 2020
A special show talking about reading as a response to the global pandemic. It is a good time to ask if reading is superfluous or essential. We are responding in two ways: 1. We're developing a new series, On Solitude, as that look at our current situation from different angles. 2. START A BOOK CLUB - Use the discount code "CLUB" during the quarantine and get a 50% discount. If you are on lockdown with a group we can send several books to you in one location OR if you want to get into a club with friends remotely through the web we can ship books to different locations. *** If you are afraid of losing your job and some Mouse Books could help you make it through anxious times, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can hook you up with some free books. ***
6 minutes | Mar 9, 2020
Gaius Julius Caesar (100–44 BCE) is regarded as one of the most effective military generals in human history. His conquest of Gaul propelled him into the national spotlight, providing him the platform he needed to establish himself as a supreme leader. Despite what we learn about him and school (and how we learn about him), his biography should be a cautionary tale about power and betrayal. While the Gorgias and De Oratore address the necessity of speaking well and telling the truth, Caesar’s Commentaries are pure propaganda, an early version of the “campaign memoir,” in which he uses his story of conquest to implicitly make his case for becoming the ruler of Rome. This text provides an important counterpoint to the work of Cicero in particular. Caesar embodied precisely what Cicero was trying to warn his generation against.
7 minutes | Mar 2, 2020
Marcus Tullius Cicero (106–43 BCE) was arguably the greatest intellectual and statesman of the Roman era. He was a key opponent of Julius Caesar, and his work on the art of oration, and his orations themselves, continue to instruct anyone who wishes to speak against propaganda and authoritarian rule. De Oratore is Cicero’s textbook on oratory, in which he outlines the relationships between what we say in public and the kind of wisdom and goodness that we cultivate in private. Ultimately that relationship should be one-to-one, resulting in the highest form of persuasion: the conversion of one’s soul.
9 minutes | Feb 17, 2020
MBC-011-PRESIDENTS DAY SPECIAL
A reading of president Lincoln's favorite poem, "Mortality" by William Knox. Here is a LINK to the text.
13 minutes | Feb 10, 2020
An interview on philosophy, Socrates, and Plato's Gorgias with Professor Agnes Callard of the University of Chicago.
9 minutes | Feb 3, 2020
The Gorgias is a dialogue in which Socrates warns against the dangers of sophistry, or slippery rhetoric. He accepts many challengers, turning their objections back onto themselves, causing the interlocutor to refute his own argument. It is a foundational text of rhetorical studies.
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