Karen Werner makes audio stories, mostly non-fiction, and she is a sociologist; sometimes she combines the two practices.
Her audio stories have been commissioned by and broadcast on the Australian Broadcast Corporation Radio National shows, Radiotonic, Soundproof, and Earshot. And they have been played at Kinokophone’s sound cinema events at Lincoln Center, NYC; on Radiophrenia, a temporary art radio station at Glasgow’s Centre for Contemporary Art; and at the Deep Listening Festival in Troy, NY. Her radio feature, “Laws of Lost and Found Objects,” won the 2016 Grand Prix Marulić.
Her sociological interests include story as methodology, politics of voice, critical storytelling and auto-ethnography, decolonization and indigenous methodologies, community economies, and art activism. Her writing has been published in Rethinking Marxism, Critical Sociology, American Journal of Sociology, Making Other Worlds Possible: Performing Diverse Economies (University of Minnesota Press), and Solidarity Economy: Building Alternatives for People and Planet (ChangeMaker Publications.)
From 2014-16, she was a Tending Space Fellow with the Hemera Foundation, which supports people who have Buddhist and art practices. She’s been practicing Zen Buddhism for 9 years.
Born in the U.S. to parents who were originally from Vienna, she will be working on an experimental radio series called “Strange Radio“ during her time at studio das weisse haus. Weaving together interviews, sounds, and archival recordings, seven Strange Radio episodes will explore aspects of strangeness: self and others, displacement and arrival, migration and staying put, and home and un-homeliness (unheimlich) in the context of global power relations.