The state of our democracies

Show notes

This episode we focus on our democracy and what it means to take an active part in it. We explore moments that test our values and the variety of ways artists, writers, and activists engage with politics – including through slam poetry, on the soccer pitch, and on the dance floor.

Host Sylvia Cunningham is joined by DJ and musician Sarah Farina to talk about their project “Politics of the Dance Floor,” how raving is a form of resistance, and the kind of worlds we should be working towards creating (01:04). Katha, one of the hosts of “Beats per Morning” on sunshine live, also stops by to talk about how she fell in love with electronic music as well as reflect on how Germans’ perception of the U.S. has changed over her lifetime (10:10).

Theres Matthieß, assistant professor of Empirical Democracy Research at the University of Trier, breaks down the surprising findings of her research regarding coalition pledges and whether or not governments keep them (15:18). Dustin George-Miller, Managing Editor of Cartilage Free Captain, a blog for Tottenham Hotspur football fans, talks about wrestling with the decision to cover the controversial World Cup in Qatar and the issues he’s trying to spotlight (24:23).

And Jaida Taveras, Connecticut's Inaugural Youth Poet Laureate, and Noah Klaus, slam poet and teacher, come together for a transatlantic conversation about the weaknesses of our political systems and the topics that drive their writing (29:52).

Programming note (0:32): After 18 months of producing Tearing Down Walls, this will be Sylvia’s last episode as host for now. Sunshine live is committed to continuing the transatlantic dialogue, so stay tuned in 2023!

Also check out our other SUNSHINE LIVE podcasts: Behind the scenes interviews from festivals and clubs with techno DJ Felix Kröcher, honest looks at drug use in the nightlife, including safer use tips, travel recommendations from DJs and many more. Find them at, in the SUNSHINE LIVE app or right here on this podcast platform.

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