After their time as philosophy undergrads gorging on cheap wine and bread, co-hosts cosima bee concordia and Aurora Laybourn reunite almost a decade later for Drunk Church, a podcast haunting the liminal spaces between anti-fascist theory and religious eroticism.
Named for a gathering of queers where art, drink, and communion were shared outside of the confines of formal institutions, Drunk Church seeks to transgress, subvert, and blaspheme the religious for our own pleasure and thriving. In a world that feels like it’s ending and with fascism ascendant, how do we to build shared ritual, meaning, and narrative on our own terms? Come get drunk on the blood of God!Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon!
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Playing with Fire: Ethical Sadism & the Draw to Overwhelm (Part III on Avgi Saketopoulou's "Sexuality Beyond Consent")
1:40:51Given the failures of affirmative consent, how can we develop a better more nuanced framework that both embraces the messiness of sex and attends to the ways in which intimacy makes us uniquely vulnerable? What is the insatiable will that drives us to seek 'more and more' in our intimate encounters and aesthetic experiences? In what ways does play allow us to straddle the line between the real and the fictive so as to stir up the unconscious and trouble simplistic dualities such as normative understandings of Eros and Thanatos? How could a form of ethical sadism serve to guide our erotic relations so as to enable us to flirt with danger and play with limits? Come with us and play with fire in our third installment of Avgi Saketopoulou's “Sexuality Beyond Consent: Risk, Race, Traumatophilia”.Grab a copy for yourself from NYUPress to follow along!Intro & outro song is "Bless You" by the Ink SpotsSign up as a Drunk Church patron for access to a community discord, a private RSS feed with a selection of extended and bonus episodes, discounts on Drunk Church merch, and more! Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Possession: The Anatomy of a Breakup and The Dissolution of the Family (Free Version)
36:44This is the free teaser—to get access to the whole hour and a half bonus version, go to our Patreon and sign up at "Getting Tipsy with the Lord" or higher.Andrzej Żuławski’s fever dream “Possession”—quite certainly the most extraordinary breakup film ever made—serves as our subject for today’s bonus episode, and we invite you to join us as we are engulfed within the overwhelming tides of the mythosymbolic realm that it reveals to us. The film's dream logic defies reduction to rational understanding—indeed, such attempts would strip away its very essence, the power that renders it so profoundly affecting as it pulls us deeper and deeper into its unraveling horrors.We ask: What does it mean to be possessed? And how do we, in turn, seek possession of others and ourselves? In horrified fascination, we witness the characters' frenzied pursuit of various forms of possession, only for them to realize the multifaceted ways in which they themselves are possessed—not merely by desires like lust and jealousy, but also by institutions such as family and state. Our unsettling revelation lies in the disconnection between self-mastery and possession, leading us to contemplate whether, under these totalizing circumstances, reclaiming a sense of self necessitates surrendering to a kind of possession. Could it be that in order for us to truly experience ourselves authentically we must let ourselves become vulnerable to a possession that un-masters us, gives ourselves over to others, and risks the very same sense of self that we are so desperately in pursuit of?From escapades in espionage to the many tentacled eldritch horrors of the erotic unconscious, we trace the intricate anatomy of a breakup and the dissolution of the family, arriving at both terrifying and potentially liberating conclusions.Also featured: cosima’s dog and her dog’s dog friend who demandingly took center stage throughout recording in such a way that editing them out seemed in bad taste.Embrace the arcane journey with us as we explore these depths!Intro/outro song by "Bless You" by The Ink Spots Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
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To Suffer Pleasure: Opacity and Self Making (Part II on Avgi Saketopoulou's "Sexuality Beyond Consent")
1:12:20Diving into our second segment in our series on Avgi Saketopoulou’s “Sexuality Beyond Consent: Risk, Race, Traumatophilia”, we take you through the first chapter: "To Suffer Pleasure: Limit Experience and Transgression". What is the nature between desire and disgust? Where does perversity first arise, and what does it mean to seek experiences of overwhelm rather than shrink from them? Even more radically, what political potentialities can we find within the experience of self shattering as a force that detranslates the stubborn meanings of the ego? We hope you continue to enjoy delving into this difficult text with us to challenge even some of our most dearly held notions. Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
An Exquisite Slap: Introducing Avgi Saketopoulou’s "Sexuality Beyond Consent"
1:16:50We are thrilled to present our first episode of a series working through Avgi Saketopoulou’s brilliant “Sexuality Beyond Consent: Risk, Race, Traumatophilia”—a text so meaty that this episode does not make it past its introduction. In the vein of Oliver Davis and Tim Dean’s “Hatred of Sex” that we covered last season, “Sexuality Beyond Consent” speaks to a society that has become obsessed and terrified of trauma, rational subjects looking both to shield ourselves from any possible experiences that could create it and to heal and eliminate any of it that has already gotten inside us. Avgi Saketopoulou presents us with an alternative: subjects that are always opaque to ourselves and with trauma that is never inert or erased, for whom experiences of overwhelm can open ourselves up to confrontations with that opaqueness in us, and with them strange new possibilities. We could not be more excited to submit ourselves to this incredible work and see what arises from the encounter in the weeks to come.Grab a copy of “Sexuality Beyond Consent” for yourself from NYUPress to follow along!Into song is "Bless You" by "The Ink Spots" Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Radfems, Transsexuals, & the Youth: A Proverbial Discourse Grab-bag (Free Version)
1:05:13For this episode we do something a little different, going through some of the hottest subjects of discourse of the current moment as a way to review lots of the major themes we've covered in Drunk Church so far. Honoring our Villain Arc, we talk generational divides, the ludicrousness of a "Trans Inclusive" Radfem, overall rise in fascistic sentiment across generations, and, perhaps most importantly, the ways in which understanding queerness as being always built up and against perversion is more relevant than ever.In place of confessions, we share the submissions we received after our "Trauma & Taboo: The Unspeakability of Sexual Violation" episode from when we created an anonymous space for people to share their own unspeakable or unsayable experiences of violation.If you would like to listen to the full episode on a patreon only RSS feed, sign up for Drunk Church on Patreon. Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Trauma & Taboo: The Unspeakability of Sexual Violation
1:23:39Continuing with our Season 2 Villain Arc, we examine the vilification of victims and the gridlock of taboos that surround sexual violation through a discussion of our very own Aurora Laybourn’s original work “Cavarero’s Repugnance: Naming Sexual Violence”. Building from a critique of Adriana Cavarero’s "Horrorism", Aurora argues that the repugnance of sexual violence has a silencing effect that renders it unintelligible and unspeakable by recontextualizing Medusa, the figure Cavarero uses to represent the horror she evoked on others, as a rape victim herself.. The figure of Medusa exposes how when faced with victims and their narratives we overt our eyes and choose not to see, preferring to villainize them instead. Looking straight on has a freezing effect, as to do so would force us to confront the horrifying extent to which we are implicated in perpetuating the negative effects of sexual violence.We apply this critique to a wide range of issues ranging from interpersonal harm, plagiarism, sex work and transness—asking ourselves what it means to engage with the messy intelligibility of violation regardless of the horror, and to see the human face behind the gorgon's mask. Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Trigger Warning: A Holiday Special!
49:41Drunk Church returns victoriously for the start of our second season with “Trigger Warning: A Holiday Special!”, our festive conversation on violation, power, desire, fantasy, patriarchy, and the ambiguity of trauma's uncontrollable nature centered on Paul Verhoeven’s fabulous Christmas film “Elle”. Get cozy and snuggle up with a cup of hot coco, and join us for a little bit of holiday fear.Intro and outro: White Christmas as performed by the Ink Spots Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Bonus: Secretary Review (FREE VERSION)
41:49This free version of the review is a shortened version of our full episode, which is available to all subscribers on their patron-exclusive RSS feed. You can sign up to our patreon to get access to exclusive content and help keep the show going hereFor today's sermon we talk about "Secretary" starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and James Spader, a film that serves as a major root for the yearnings of countless leatherqueers for its perverse romance. What does it mean for a movie to be "problematic"? How does Mary Gaitskill's original much darker short story inform our understanding of the film? What does it mean to want something that everyone says is bad for you? How does desire open up ways outside of the well trod narrative paths of the family? What is "good representation" anyway? We discuss all of these things rolled up in the ooey gooey romance of it all!Intro and outro song is "Bless You" by the Ink Spots. Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
The Horror of Desire: A Halloween Special!
1:26:35How is it that desire, when taken to its conclusion, curdles into horror? For our Halloween Special, we linger with two transgressive erotic BDSM novels—first, with Pauline Réage's classic "Story of O" and then with its provocative leatherdyke echo in Jane DeLynn's "Leash"—to see the ways that our desire has the power to undo us. We have explored before how eroticism may destabilize us, stretch the ego like an overworn condom, or even make us stare into the abyss of our own dissolution—now we will stretch those limits as far as they can go.Will we hide from desire—repress it and hope it goes away instead of coming back someday in even more monstrous form—or do we open ourselves up to it even in all its horrific power, and take the ultimate leap of faith? In the end, the choice is yours and yours alone.Show notes:"Story of O" by Pauline Réage"Leash" by Jane DeLynnThis week we asked you for things you desire but are scared of on Instagram—these are shared in place of confessions.Intro and outro song is "Bless You" by the Ink Spots Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Dangerous Sex & The Empire of Trauma
1:09:09For our grand finale to this four part series on "Hatred of Sex" we investigate the ways that attempts to subsume sex into neat and tidy identiy categories inevitably tighten bureaucracies of risk. These administrative processes police sex at the margins, while simultaneously letting sexual abuse run rampant as long as it happens within appropriately normative forms. The hypocrisy of this fragrant abuse of power should come as no surprise! The fact that right wing pundits gleefully argue that the age of consent should be dramatically lowered and rape should be taken less seriously while at the same time inciting violence against trans and queer people by equating them to groomers for the mere fact of their existence is not a result in a lapse of logic. None of this is a mistake—it is fundamentally rooted in the logic of a hatred of sex. Following Oliver Davis and Tim Dean, we lay Attachment Theory bare, exposing it as as a thinly veiled attempt to make the messiness of inner experience and sex administrable to produce the proper white middle class subject. Attachment Theory's commitment to producing docile bourgeois subjects has led into the entire field of traumatology which equates all conflict to abuse, thus reducing abuse as a category and further obscuring the very experiences it initially sought to render less opaque. "Hatred of Sex" rests on the bold claim that "there is no escaping sexual inappropriateness, even when sex is pleasurable and consensual, and thus no escaping our inclination to hate it". What matters then is what we do with sex from here—keep trying to hide the mess, or get filthy and shattered by its unbinding potential?Show notes:"Hatred of Sex" by Oliver Davis and Tim Dean"Governmentality" by Tania Murray Li "Polysecure: Attachment, Trauma and Consensual Nonmonogamy" by Jessica Fern"Rewriting the Soul: Multiple Personalities and the Sciences of Memory" by Ian Hacking"Trauma and Recovery" by Judith Herman"Abnormal: Lectures at the Collège de France, 1974–1975" by Michel Foucault"Foucault, Feminism, and Sex Crimes: An Anti-Carceral Analysis" by Chloë Taylor Get access to full bonus episodes, an exclusive RSS feed, and more by subscribing our Patreon! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.