Podcasting Criticism (Criticism LTD, Episode #12)

Apple Podcasts


Resonate Recordings

An appropriately rangy discussion of the podcast medium and its debts to existing print and audio forms. The origin story of The American Vandal Podcast is followed by comparison with several other podcasts, including Revisionist History [11:30], Remarkable Receptions [30:00], and High Theory [68:00], interspersed with analysis of podcast editing as criticism [50:00], the conservative traditions of orality and radio [60:00], and how podcasting might by made to “count” for disciplinary professionalization [90:00].

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Kim Adams is the World Fellow at the Pennsylvania State University Humanities Institute and a co-founder of both the High Theory podcast and the Humanities Podcast Network.

Saronik Bosu is a PhD candidate in English at New York University, an NYU-Mellon Public Humanities Curatorial Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution, and a co-founder of both the High Theory podcast and the Humanities Podcast Network.

Sheri-Marie Harrison is Associate Professor of English and Associate Dean of Graduate Studies & Faculty Success at University of Missouri. She just published a co-edited collection, Jesmyn Ward: New Critical Essays (Edinburgh UP, 2023), and blogs about her reading lists at All Things Sheri. Her dormant podcast is The Sheri Show. She is also the author of “The New Black Gothic.”

Joe Locke is a professional vibraphonist, composer, and bandleader with hundreds of recording credits and commissions across a range of musical styles. His 2023 album, Makram (Circle 9 Records), is the soundtrack to “Criticism LTD.”

Howard Rambsy is Distinguished Research Professor of Literature at Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville, the author of Bad Men: Creative Touchstones of Black Writers (U Virginia, 2020), and executive producer of Remarkable Receptions. He blogs about poetry, digital humanities, and much more at Cultural Front.

Matt Seybold is Associate Professor of American Literature & Mark Twain Studies at Elmira College, resident scholar at the Center For Mark Twain Studies, and executive producer of The American Vandal PodcastHe’s also co-editor (with Michelle Chihara) of The Routledge Companion to Literature & Economics (2018).


The American Vandal Podcast is delighted that Joe Locke and Circle 9 Records have given us permission to use Locke’s new album, Makramas the soundtrack to the “Criticism LTD” series. Locke’s quartet features Lorin Cohen on bass, Jim Ridl on keys, and Samvel Sarkisyan on drums, as well as Locke on vibes.

Tracks featured in this episode include Locke’s original compositions “Makram,” “Song For Vic Juris,” “Interwoven Hues,” and “Shifting Moons.”

And his arrangement of Cole Porter’s “Love For Sale.”

Episode Bibliography:

“Friends of The Pod” n+1 (Spring 2019)

Kim Adams & Saronik Bosu, “Criticism Amplified: New Media & The Podcast Form” High Theory (January 7, 2023)

Melvyn Bragg et al, In Our Time (BBC)

Wendy Brown, Undoing The Demos: Neoliberalism’s Stealth Revolution (Zone Books, 2015)

Theodor Adorno, “The Radio Symphony: An Experiment in Theory” is Essays on Music (U. California, 2002)

Michelle Chihara, “Neoliberal Gaslighting, Quality Journalism, & Podcasting” Post45 (August 31, 2020)

Michelle Chihara, “The Rise of Behavioral Economic Masculinity” American Literary History (Spring 2020)

Mark Cirino & Michael Von Cannon, One True Podcast

Jacque Derrida, Of Grammatology (1967) [Hopkins UP 40th Anniversary Edition]

Jacque Derrida, Limited Inc. (Northwestern UP, 1988)

Joanne Diaz & Abram Van Engen, Poetry For All

Frances Dickey, John Whittier-Ferguson, Megan Quiqley, & Matt Seybold, “Unsealing the Archive of T. S. Eliot’s Love Letters To Emily Hale” The American Vandal Podcast (March 16, 2021)

Michael Docherty, Pod45 by Contemporaries

Frances Evangelista, Rebecca Hussey, & Dorian Stuber, “The Stone Angel” One Bright Book (April 19, 2023)

Malcolm Gladwell et al, “The King of Tears” Revisionist History (July 20, 2017)

Malcolm Gladwell, Talking To Strangers: What We Should Know About People We Don’t Know (Pushkin, 2019)

Malcolm Gladwell & Bill Simmons, “Malcolm Gladwell On The Future of Books” The Bill Simmons Podcast (September 18, 2019)

John Guillory, Professing Criticism: Essays On The Organization of Literary Study (U. Chicago, 2022)

Sheri-Marie Harrison, “New Black Gothic” Los Angeles Review of Books (June 23, 2018)

Sheri-Marie Harrison, “Marlon James & The Metafiction of the New Black Gothic” liquid blackness (Fall 2022)

Sheri-Marie Harrison & Julie Passanante Elman, “The Uses of Food in a Pandemic” The Sheri Show (March 12, 2021)

Sheri-Marie Harrison & Sarah Brouillette, “The Uses of Instagram” The Sheri Show (March 5, 2021)

Sheri-Marie Harrison et al, “Sister Scholars Discuss Coming 2 America” The Sheri Show (March 19, 2021)

Sheri-Marie Harrison & Matt Seybold, “The New Black Gothic & Lovecraft Country The American Vandal Podcast (November 11, 2020)

Sheri-Marie Harrison, Andrew Hoberek, Ignacio M. Sanchez Prado, & Matt Seybold, “Exterminate All The Brutes” The American Vandal Podcast (May 4, 2021)

Aneeka Ayanna Henderson, “Terry McMillan’s Waiting To ExhaleRemarkable Receptions (September 7, 2022)

Aneeka Ayanna Henderson, Veil & Vow: Marriage Matters in Contemporary African American Culture (UNC Press, 2020)

Marlon James & Jake Morrissey, Marlon & Jake Read Dead People

Walt Hunter & Kamran Javadizadeh, “Gwendolyn Brooks (‘kitchenette building’)” Close Readings (June 5, 2023)

Katie K, Tristan Sweiger, & Megan Tusler, “The Last of The Mohicans” Better Read Than Dead: Literature From A Left Perspective (September 5, 2022)

Sianne Ngai, Theory Of The Gimmick: Aesthetic Judgment & Capitalist Form (Harvard UP, 2020)

Novel Dialogue

Raoul Peck, Exterminate All The Brutes (HBO, 2021)

Jim Phelan & Sean O’Sullivan, “‘Black Box’ by Jennifer Egan” Project Narrative (June 20, 2022)

Stephyn Phillips, “Blade, Vampire Hunter” Remarkable Receptions (January 10, 2023)

Howard Rambsy II, “The Remarkable Reception of Ta-Nahesi Coates” African American Review (Fall 2016)

Howard Rambsy II, “The Rise of Colson Whitehead: Hi-Tech Narratives & Literary Ascent” New Essays on The African American Novel (Palgrave, 2008)

Howard Rambsy II, Bad Men: Creative Touchstones of Black Writers (U. Virginia, 2020)

Howard Rambsy II & Kenton Rambsy, “How The New York Times Covers Black Writers” Public Books (October 12, 2023)

Howard Rambsy II & Kenton Rambsy, “Quantifying Toni Morrison’s Reception” Remarkable Receptions (February 16, 2023)

Howard Rambsy II & Kenton Rambsy, “Toni Morrison By The Numbers” Cultural Front (November 14, 2016)

Howard Rambsy II & Elizabeth Cali, “Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad Remarkable Receptions (August 5, 2022)

Ryan Ruby, Jess Swoboda, & Zach Fine, “Susan Sontag” Selected Essays (September 12, 2023)

Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, “Paranoid Reading & Reparative Reading; or, You’re So Paranoid, You Probably Think This Introduction Is About You” Novel Gazing: Queer Readings of Fiction (Duke UP, 1997)

Matt Seybold et al, “The Golden Age of The Working Critic,” The American Vandal Podcast (August 7, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “Hungover From The Bad Old Days of High Theory,” The American Vandal Podcast (August 14, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “Ponzi Austerity in The Age of Cultural Abundance” The American Vandal Podcast (August 21, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “Ponzi Austerity & The Monolingual University” The American Vandal Podcast (August 25, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “The Racist Interpretation Complex” The American Vandal Podcast (August 28, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “The Chicago Fight & ‘Criticism Inc.’” The American Vandal Podcast (September 5, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “Politics & The Paracademy” The American Vandal Podcast (September 23, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “Brittle Paper & The Blogossance” The American Vandal Podcast (October 2, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “BookTube, BookTok, Wattpad, & The Audible Creation Exchange” The American Vandal Podcast (October 12, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “Criticism in The Conglomerate Era” The American Vandal Podcast (October 17, 2023)

Matt Seybold et al, “The Gospel of Revolt: Mark Twain in Elmira” The C19 Podcast: America In The 19th-Century (December 17, 2019)

Modern Language Association (MLA), “Guidelines For Evaluating Publicly Engaged Humanities Scholarship in Language & Literature Programs” (August 2022)

Courtney Thorsson, “Toni Morrison’s Beloved The American Vandal Podcast (August 6, 2022)

Kyla Wazana Tompkins, “The Shush” PMLA 136.3 (May 2021)

Mark Twain, “In Defense of Harriet Shelley” North American Review (July 1894)

Jesse L. Werner et al, “Women In Podcasting: We Should Tune In” Permanente (Fall 2020)

Isabel Wilkerson, The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration (Penguin, 2010)