Weird Studies

Monks of the Cultural Apocalypse: 'The Glass Bead Game,' Part Two

In the current "attention economy," which has resulted in plummeting literacy rates and the almost wanton neglect of various cultural practices, what significance does culture even have? Why seek to preserve something our age has decided doesn't have to exist? Perhaps Hermann Hesse's The Glass Bead Game can be read as an answer to those questions. The order of monastic scholars in the novel exists mainly to remember what others were happy to consign to oblivion. In this episode, Phil and JF discuss Hesse's ideas on the order and its sacred game in terms of how they might help us meet the challenge facing anyone who believes the value of culture can't be expressed in dollars and cents.


Herman Hesse, The Glass Bead Game

Pope Benedict XVI, former head of the Catholic church

J.S. Bach, Well Tempered Clavier, Rosalyn Tureck interpretation and Glenn Gould interpretation

Walter Benjamin, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Chauvet Cave

Peter Bebergal Strange Frequencies

Andy Goldsworthy, British artist

Alain de Botton, Religion for Atheists

William Irwin Thompson, The Time Falling Bodies Take to Light

Podden och tillhörande omslagsbild på den här sidan tillhör Phil Ford and J. F. Martel. Innehållet i podden är skapat av Phil Ford and J. F. Martel och inte av, eller tillsammans med, Poddtoppen.