Help me learn more about the labor and leftist movements via audio
March 8, 2013 11:17 AM   Subscribe

I'd like to learn more about the history of the left, particularly the far left, particularly as it relates to me, a late-20's north american male. I'd love to learn more about the left, labor, unions, communism, socialism, labor laws, etc., particularly in what factors and machinations gave and took away rights and freedoms. Here's the kicker - I'm really, really hoping to find them in audio format so I can learn while I exercise. Audiobooks, podcasts, lectures, etc.

There is a great list of books covering almost exactly what I'm after in this related question, but I am also interested in broader coverage of the topic. Also - not all audio books are created equal if you know what I mean. I'm interested in hearing opinions about the quality of the audio - the reader, the sound, etc.

thank you all very much!
posted by rebent to Education (8 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn is available from It's a comprehensive US history from a leftist perspective so there will be material that doesn't involve the labor movement but it's a superb book.
posted by workerant at 11:37 AM on March 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

The linked thread didn't mention Studs Terkel's work so I'll go ahead and put in a plug for any of his books, particularly Hard Times and Working which would fit your interests. Terkel was a radio personality and writer who did hundreds of oral interviews with Americans from all walks of life about the Great Depression (Hard Times) and their working life (Working). These works would be essentially primary source samplers for you.

However, some Googling shows me that the books don't seem to be readily available on CD or as sound files. Some of the interviews that were the basis for Hard Times are here, in RealAudio (gack) format.
posted by Currer Belfry at 11:38 AM on March 8, 2013

If you want to learn about Marx and Marxism, you can listen to David Harvey's lectures on Marx's Capital.
posted by cushie at 12:03 PM on March 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

Check out We Are Many, which has tons of recordings of talks from various International Socialist Organization conferences from the past few years. Topics include Labor/Unions, Socialism & Marxism (history and theory), Economics, etc.
posted by scody at 12:07 PM on March 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

I'm just gonna be a brat and say that if you mean by "relevant to you" that the feminist movement is not relevant to you as a man, I'd suggest that you're missing out on a very important segment of leftist history-- though sorry, don't have any recs at the moment
posted by stoneandstar at 6:48 PM on March 8, 2013

Response by poster: stoneandstar: Although, or perhaps because, I am male, feminist theory is highly relevant to me.
posted by rebent at 9:09 PM on March 8, 2013

WeAreMany is a gold mine - so to speak.
SCody, thanks for the link.
posted by Abinadab at 1:35 AM on March 9, 2013

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