John Higgs is an English writer, novelist, journalist, and cultural historian. The work of Higgs has been published in the form of novels (under the pseudonym JMR Higgs), biographies, and works of cultural history.
I don’t usually begin interviews with the question “who the hell are you?” But, then again, not every guest is John Higgs.I fell into Higgs’s work by accident. An offhand recommendation of his book on the KLF, a British band that burnt a million pounds but couldn’t explain why they did it. What’s unusual is that I’ve not quite been able to climb back out of it. Higgs’s work is reality-warping. Once you put on his lenses, it’s hard to take them back off.At the center of Higgs’s strange, brilliant books — his heterodox history of the 20th century, his biography of Timothy Leary, his tour of “metamodernism” — is a single, urgent question: How do we understand the world around us even as advances in physics, psychology, art, pharmacology, and philosophy shatter our frames of reference?This conversation takes some wild turns, but trying to describe it would do it a disservice. Just trust me on this one. It’s good to mess with your reality every once in awhile.References: John Higgs’s conversation with Alan Moore What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture Shaped the Personal Computer Industry by John Markoff Book Recommendations: The Patterning Instinct by Jeremy Lent Cosmic Trigger I by Robert Anton WilsonFrom Hell by Alan Moore Want to contact the show? Reach out at ezrakleinshow@vox.comNews comes at you fast. Join us at the end of your day to understand it. Subscribe to Today, Explained Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Robin catches up with author John Higgs to talk about his latest book Watling Street: Travels Through Britain and Its Ever-Present Past. They chat about the book that charts the cultural history of one of Britain's oldest roads with tales of Alan Moore, Steve Moore, tulpamancy, the KLF and more. Support the show and get rewards for doing so at patreon.com/bookshambles
John Higgs is the author of I HAVE AMERICA SURROUNDED: THE LIFE OF TIMOTHY LEARY; THE KLF: CHAOS, MAGIC AND THE BAND WHO BURNED A MILLION POUNDS; STRANGER THAN WE CAN IMAGINE: MAKING SENSE OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY; and the novels THE BRANDY OF THE DAMNED and THE FIRST CHURCH ON THE MOON. John's latest book is WATLING STREET.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
John Higgs is the author of I Have America Surrounded: The Life of Timothy Leary, The KLF: Chaos, Magic and the Band Who Burned a Million Pounds, and the novel The Brandy of the Damned. His latest book is Stranger Than We Can Imagine: Making Sense of the Twentieth Century.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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Creator Details

Location
Brighton, UK
Episode Count
4
Podcast Count
3
Total Airtime
4 hours, 20 minutes
PCID
Podchaser Creator ID logo 269510