Issue 20 | May 2024

Welcome to the May 2024 edition of The Miaaw Monthly which provides a few pointers to things you might like to explore, including (but not limited to) our podcasts.

These represent one way to have (hopefully) interesting conversations about some of the things we care about. Please spread the word as widely as you can, and encourage people to subscribe to The Miaaw Monthly.

If you have anything that you want to include in The Miaaw Monthly, or discuss in the podcasts, then please email us at and we will be happy to collaborate.


Whatever time of day the podcast arrives in your time zone you can drop everything for 41 minutes 36 seconds and enjoy the last edition for this month: a newly minted episode of Common Practice.

In today’s episode Sophie Hope talks to Karen Pilkington about her inspiring work as a community activist in Plymouth.

They discuss the origins of the Village Hub project, and what it has gone on to achieve.


Every Friday a podcast appears at approximately 12:12 Helsinki time (which you may like to think of as 10:12 UTC). Here are the podcasts that will arrive in May.

Friday May 3: Meanwhile in an Abandoned Warehouse | Episode 73

Sometimes, just when you think that a mini-series has finished, another episode pops up. Some people emailed to ask about the aside about Todoist in last episode’s notes where Owen Kelly claimed that it “sits at the heart of his attempts to stay organised”.

He rises to the challenge and explains about Todoist, why you might host your own calendars, and how these relate to positive laziness and doing nothing, in Mind Like Water

Friday May 10: Ways of Listening | Episode 7

In an episode that we call Changing the Resonance, practitioner and researcher Sylvan Baker talks to Hannah Kemp-Welch and describes a process of using ‘headphone verbatim’ to share testimonies with care-experienced young people.

They explore the ways in which playback and performance can change the resonance of the spoken word.

Friday May 17: A Culture of Possibility | Episode 40

Arlene Goldbard and François Matarasso interview James Thompson, Professor of Applied and Social Theatre at the University of Manchester.

James Thompson founded In Place of War, a project researching and developing arts programs in war zones.
He has extensive experience working with and writing about theatre that operates under such conditions.

Friday May 24: Common Practice | Episode 34

Sophie Hope presents a live recording from the meeting she hosted earlier this year to acknowledge and celebrate the twelve years’ work of the Alternative School of Economics.

Friday May 31: Friday Number 5 | Episode 13

Once again we find ourselves with five Fridays in the month and so we continue this year’s collection of Friday Number 5.

We celebrate another podcast with which we feel an affinity, and which we believe that you might enjoy. We will provide a complete episode or, at the very least, chunky excerpts for your listening pleasure.


All our podcasts are available from Apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Overcast, RadioPublic, Soundcloud, Spotify, and Stitcher.

You can also listen to them at the website where you will find additional links, notes, and references accompanying each episode.

You will also find a full archive of all the previous podcasts there.


Conference Time!

The STP&A Board has alerted us to the fact that it “is excited to share that the submissions portal for conference proposals is now open, as well as more details about the upcoming 48th Social Theory, Politics and the Arts conference”.

You just have time to submit a proposal because they “are looking forward to a vibrant and intellectually rich conference in December, and to receiving your conference proposals by May 1st”.

You can find out more details and submit your proposals here. And the conference itself takes place in Osuna, Spain on December 12-14, 2024.

Fighting Disinformation with Serifs

Portugal unveiled an official government typeface this week as part of a national visual-identity rebrand.

The Portuguesa font combines serif and sans-serif elements and can be used in more than 250 different languages as a result of its expansive range of glyphs.

In a press release we learned that “Dino dos Santos, the typeface’s designer, has previously created fonts for global events and companies such as Expo 2020 Dubai, the 2022 Fifa World Cup and Corticeira Amorim, and can now add Portugal’s state budget, government documentation and civil-service communications to his list”.

Dos Santos, or the writer of the press release, made it clear why the launch of Portuguesa was important. “In the disinformation era, having an established government font means that people can immediately recognise official documents and statements.”

Our Friend the Computer

We recently came across a “podcast exploring alternative computing histories and their relationship to society”.

Hosted by Camila Galaz and Ana Meisel, this acts as a sister project of The Media Archaeology Lab at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

You can find Our Friend the Computer right here.

Camila Galaz and Ana Meisel have also just launched a new zine which will live alongside their existing zine, ephemerMAL Zine. You can find this at the Internet Archive here.


Those of you thinking of visiting Helsinki this summer might like to know something about the village of Fiskars. Apart from producing knives they hold a bienniale exhibition.

The next edition of the Fiskars Village Village Art & Design Biennale will take place from 16 June to 1 September, 2024.

According to their newsletter,

There will be two Main Exhibitions and a versatile Parallel Programme. The Surprise Guest Main Exhibition in the Old Granary will warmly welcome every summer visitor. A summer villa-like entity is planned for the space, the interior of which will show off the top names in contemporary design. The surprise guests are multidisciplinary artists chosen by curator Sini Rinne-Kanto.

So now you know!

And in a couple of months we may reveal the surprise guest who, if previous years mean anything, might prove someone we will find interesting.

If you subscribe to The Miaaw Monthly you will get a short, sharp newsletter in your email in-box at breakfast time on the last Friday of every month. You can then find out what’s in the podcasts for the following month, as well as some things available in the wider world.

We won’t sell you email address, or use it for anything else except mailing you a copy of The Miaaw Monthly every four or five weeks.

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