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LRB Conversations

Various discussions on topics and writers drawn from the pages of the LRB.

Press the Red Button

William Davies and Thomas Jones, 4 August 2020

28 July 2020 · 52mins

William Davies talks to Thomas Jones about the new political polarisation, and what it owes to the online culture of instant feedback. What does politics look like, Davies asks, once the provocation of reaction, positive or negative, precedes the slow work of excavation, research, reporting and administration?

States of Shock

Pankaj Mishra and Adam Shatz, 4 August 2020

21 July 2020 · 51mins

Pankaj Mishra talks to Adam Shatz about his latest piece for the LRB, which looks at the ways the US and UK have responded to the Covid-19 pandemic and Black Lives Matter protests, and what those botched responses reveal about the broader failures of Anglo-America.

Everyone misplaces my keys

Amia Srinivasan and Thomas Jones, 4 August 2020

7 July 2020 · 31mins

Amia Srinivasan talks to Thomas Jones about the long search for a third person singular, gender-neutral pronoun, and the resurgence of the pronoun debate in recent years.

How do you change things?

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor and Adam Shatz, 4 August 2020

30 June 2020 · 57mins

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor talks to Adam Shatz about the intellectual and historical background to the Black Lives Matter movement, and why she’s optimistic that the current protests might bring change.

Maigret Returns

John Lanchester and Thomas Jones, 28 July 2020

2 June 2020 · 37mins

John Lanchester talks to Thomas Jones about the author of the Maigret stories, whose output was so prodigious that even he didn't know how many books he wrote.

Reopening the NHS

Sonia Gandhi, Rupert Beale and Thomas Jones, 3 August 2020

26 May 2020 · 30mins

Sonia Gandhi and Rupert Beale, scientists at the Francis Crick Institute, talk to Thomas Jones about the ways Covid-19 can affect the nervous system, the steps required to reopen the NHS after lockdown, the state of testing, and reasons for optimism about a vaccine.

Semi-Recumbent in Bournemouth

Andrew O’Hagan and Thomas Jones, 28 July 2020

19 May 2020 · 36mins

Andrew O’Hagan talks to Thomas Jones about the friendship between Robert Louis Stevenson and Henry James, and the time they spent together in Bournemouth.

The Theory Truce

Michael Wood and Adam Shatz, 28 July 2020

12 May 2020 · 56mins

Michael Wood talks to Adam Shatz about critical theory, its origins, developments and various diversions, and where it stands today.

This Bad Business

Colm Tóibín and Thomas Jones, 28 July 2020

5 May 2020 · 31mins

Colm Tóibín talks to Thomas Jones about the breakdown of Elizabeth Hardwick’s marriage to Robert Lowell, and its literary consequences.

The Idea of the Island

Mary Wellesley and Joanna Biggs, 28 July 2020

28 April 2020 · 17mins

Mary Wellesley talks to Joanna Biggs about islands, blessed and not so blessed, from Homer to the Fyre Festival.

Beauvoir and Me

Joanna Biggs and Thomas Jones, 28 July 2020

21 April 2020 · 42mins

Joanna Biggs talks to Thomas Jones about the life of Simone de Beauvoir.

On the Ward

Lana Spawls and Thomas Jones, 28 July 2020

14 April 2020 · 27mins

Lana Spawls talks to Thomas Jones about working on a paediatric ward during the Covid-19 pandemic, and the ways hospitals have changed in response to the virus.

In the Lab

Rupert Beale and Thomas Jones, 3 August 2020

6 April 2020 · 33mins

Rupert Beale talks again to Thomas Jones about his work at the Francis Crick Institute, where he's helping to develop a testing lab for Covid-19. He talks about the challenges of creating a scalable testing process, explains why an antibody test could be hard to develop, and finds some reasons to be hopeful.

Four Hundred Years of Quarantine

Erin Maglaque and Thomas Jones, 3 August 2020

30 March 2020 · 38mins

Erin Maglaque talks to Thomas Jones about the lockdown imposed by the city of Florence in January 1631 in response to a plague outbreak, the similarities with our current situation, and the differences.