Thanks for a great podcast, and congratulations on the recent award!
I've been toying with an idea that I would like to share with you. It could perhaps be called a "recursive" podcast series. I would like to try it myself, but most of all, I want you to do it. Let me briefly describe my idea using a specific example. Of course, the same format, or variations, could be used for any content.
I'm just now reading Jason Brennan's "Against Democracy". It's a book that is guaranteed to engage everyone as it touches on many important and hotly debated topics.
I would like to go through the book, page by page, and document my reactions, questions, counter-arguments etc.
Using this as a manuscript, I would then like to conduct (and record) a conversation with a peer, X, who has also read the book, and then publish that conversation, both as audio (podcast) and as an edited, time-stamped, transcript.
I would then want to invite a third party, Y, to read the book, listen to the recorded conversation, and then (using the transcript as a basis) document his or her comments, as a new manuscript.
Next, Y and I record a follow-up conversation, based on Y's manuscript. This is published, as before, along with an edited, time-stamped transcript.
Now (you guessed it), I invite yet another third party, Z, to read the book, listen to both previously published conversations, document his or her comments, ...and the process repeats.
And repeats. Until... exhaustion.
I have lots of ideas on who would make good candidates for X, Y, Z and so on: political philosophers, epistemologists, social scientists, historians, political scientists, ideologues, politicians, civil servants, legal scholars...
Some ground rules:
1) The book is and remains the backbone of the conversation. Excursions are more than welcome, but sooner or later - and every once in a while - the book, and its internal structure, comes back into focus.
2) That being said, the conversation is not a review. It is a general discussion of the issues raised, and concepts used, in the book.
3) Dispassionate arguments. This book will almost certainly stir up strong emotions, on all sides, on a great number of issues, and for many different reasons. But the conversation should at all times be conducted with the utmost neutrality. This is a perfect opportunity to excercise clinical detachment. The goal is to lay bare the issues, how they connect, how they can be interpreted and handled - and to show that this can be done, without second-guessing other people's motives. (Even though they may well exist.)
I know I would love to listen to a series of podcasts like these. If you don't make them, Sam, I will!