Benjamen Walker public
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Every house is haunted. In each episode of Family Ghosts, we investigate the true story behind a mysterious figure whose legend has followed a family for generations. Grandmothers who were secretly jewel smugglers, uncles who led double lives, siblings who vanished without a trace, and other ghostly characters who cast shadows over our lives in ways that might not be immediately obvious. We are all formed in part by our familial collections of secrets, intrigues, and myths. By engaging with ...
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In the fall of 1958, Kenneth Tynan moved from London to New York and upon arrival, clashed with Hollywood mogul Samuel Goldwyn over socially engaged art and the politics of apolitical culture on live TV. At the same moment New Yorker writer Dwight Macdonald went West to report on “New” Hollywood's ambitions to create commercially and artistically s…
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In 1956, Richard Wright spoke of islands of free men at the first Congress of Black Writers and Artists in Paris. James Baldwin critiqued the event for Encounter, the CIA’s propaganda magazine. We take a close listen to the original recordings. Shownotes: Merve Fejzula and Cedric Tolliver both wrote about the 1956 Congrès des écrivains et artistes …
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In 1956 London Theater critic Kenneth Tynan helped launch a youth movement committed to exposing social and political issues on stage, on screen and in literature. We take a close look at the operators and opportunists behind England’s Angry Young Men. Shownotes: Michael Billington wrote for the Guardian, Celia Brayfield wrote Rebel Writers, Clare …
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In 1956, New Yorker writer Dwight Macdonald joined Encounter, a magazine secretly backed by American and British security agencies. He arrived in London just as British Influencers turned a young Existentialist named Colin Wilson into England's answer to Jean-Paul Sartre. Meanwhile, the CIA incited a youth rebellion in communist Hungary. We investi…
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In the 1950s the CIA weaponized culture to capture hearts and minds in Europe and Africa. We meet three writers (Richard Wright, Kenneth Tynan, and Dwight Macdonald) who got caught up in this battle both as collaborators and targets between the years of 1956 - 1960. We also meet a propagandist responsible for the CIA’s cinematic version of 1984 (Op…
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The new ToE series Propaganda is Art has a companion podcast called Propaganda Notes & Sources, think audio footnotes! Each episode in Not All Propaganda is Art gets its own corresponding episode of Propaganda Notes & Sources. Your host goes through the script for each episode and cites all the corresponding original sources he consulted, and the a…
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Today we live inside data systems that contain, surveil, and judge us. In his new book, the Hank Show, author and journalist McKenzie Funk provides us with a totally unique origin story of our world: A guy named Hank Asher. We talk with McKenzie Funk about the former Florida conto painter, drug-running pilot, alleged CIA asset, and pioneering compu…
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