blog,personal commentary,reflections on the human condition,ephemera,notes from the underbelly
http://web.ncf.ca/ek867/wood_s_lot.html - Apr 24, 2014 10:18:34 PM - Nov 28, 2004 7:34:47 AM
April 24, 2014
photo - mw
conjunctionsEventAnd then doves and the thrush and the late“An event must in some way end before its narration can begin.”
afternoon of the swallows under the bridge
and the fathoms of sleep and then the hollows
of dialogue aspiring to contain the rich facts
of what didn’t happen when it seemed to have,
and then a disquisition on the luster of windows
in the morning when a psalm is read
before lightning strikes the spire of a tall church
in the city of your birth, and then centuries
of robes of saffron or black and vespers or prayer
on cold granite or at a wall where guards
stand with AK-47s, and ghosts witness their attempts
with sorrow, unlike human sorrow, which is a stream
that evaporates when language interrupts its flow.
b. April 24, 1889
from A Time For Everything
Karl Ove Knausgaard
translated by James Anderson
The Winter AnthologyAntinous had been born in 1551 at ardo, a small mountain town in the far north of Italy, where in all likelihood he remained until he began to study in 1565. Apart from one particular event, to which he was to return time after time for the rest of his life, little is known about his early years. The names of his parents and native town do not figure anywhere in Antinous’s writings, and, as they are otherwise characterized by a large amount of biographical detail, this early obscurity has aroused the curiosity of many readers. But if one is to attempt to understand Antinous, it isn’t to the inner man one must turn. For even if one succeeded in charting his inner landscape as it actually was, right down to the smallest fissure and groove in the massif of his character, imperceptibly shaped by the slow erosion of events, and traced the course of the flood of feelings back to their source, one would end up no wiser and the meaning of what was being charted would remain obscure. Even if the events and relationships of his life were to correspond exactly with a life in our own time, one that we could understand and recognize, we would still come no closer to him. Antinous was, first and foremost, of his time, and to understand who he was, that is what must be mapped. The minimal emphasis we place on this difference is due perhaps in particular to the lasting influence of Freud, that speculative genius of the twentieth century, whose fatal confusing of culture with nature, combined with his equally fatal insistence on the external event’s inner consequences, has influenced our self-understanding more than anything else, and lured us so far away from our ancestors that we believe they were like us. But our world is only one of many possible worlds, something of which the writings of Antinous and his contemporaries serve to remind us in no small measure.The Winter Anthology
...(more)A collection of contemporary literature informed by history and older art, 21st century science and philosophy, and the ending of print culture.
An elegiac perspective.
An argument that the finest works of contemporary art are systems balanced at the edge of chaos, at the highest points of equilibrium between complexity and clarity.
An electronic collection until sufficient material for a print version accumulates.
Willem de Kooning
b. April 24, 1904
_______________________EXPLOSIONSenculturation17: Open Issue
In this essay, I look back at photographs taken at Ellis Island in the very early part of the 20th century, an era, described by Barthes, as an age of explosions--explosions not only of population and immigration but also of the personal into the public and of technophilia, best metaphorized by the explosion of a camera’s flash bulb illuminating a new world. I am specifically interested in the ways that photography became a rhetorical tool of eugenicists and immigration restrictionists, and the ways that ideas about bodily fitness and defect drove the development of the technology.
In Cara Finnegan’s terms, I develop a “rhetorical history of the visual,” in that my project “relies upon critiques of vision and visuality to illuminate the complex dynamics of power and knowledge at play in and around images” (198). In terms of method, I take up Walter Benjamin’s call for studying photographs—in the age of mechanical reproduction—in terms of their production, reproduction, and circulation. Yet, I also attend to what David Bate calls the “surfaces of emergence” in that I focus on not just a group of photos, but also the connected practices, institutions, and relationships that must be considered when undertaking an archaeology of photography .
The photographs under study, I suggest, are emblematic of an important rhetorical moment—the emergence of the American eugenics movement. They are also charts of an important rhetorical space—Ellis Island. In crafting this “rhetorical history of the visual,” I thus specifically link these images to the rhetoric of eugenics and to the social and cultural construction of categories of race and disability in this era—categories that still adhere today. I specifically argue that these photographs ought be understood as products of a technology—photography—that created a new archive and index for sorting and classifying human bodies in this era. Indeed, Ellis Island, and the photographs taken there, actually helped frame and develop both race and disability, contingently.
a refereed journal devoted to contemporary theories of rhetoric, writing, and culture.
the jug on the table
A Specter Is Haunting Precarity
Due to its lack of focus on the structural conditions of late capitalism—conditions that surely demand a more capacious understanding of the plight and figure of the precariat—precarity fails to consider the system in its totality. Because of these limitations, precarity as inscribed in the popular and academic press has become a way to maintain the status quo by creating a designation that largely includes only displaced professionals. These lapses make it difficult to organize around the conclusions the term draws because, as little more than a descriptor of the status quo, precarity can only compulsively reiterate these conclusions. And so, as Lenin so aptly put it over a century ago, what is to be done?
It is high time for displaced professionals to organize alongside of, strike with, and support fast food and other low-wage workers. Many intellectuals and others, for good reason, hesitate to get involved in these kinds of cross-racial and cross-class struggles: is this a kind of noblesse oblige, cultural imperialism, or racism under a different name, they ask. These are good questions and ones that must be asked relentlessly. But they should be asked, in my opinion, from within, rather than outside of these movements.
Joseph Mallord William Turner
b. late April - early May 1775;
Waves lack surface when you are weak, nothing risen quickly enough to keep you up. Keep pulling toward midpoint between both islands where you could be lost but must keep going like a brute force of nature despite the dwindled sap in your arms. If you never had faith you find enough to say if this is what you have in store for me, either kill me this next moment or I will be your humble servant for the rest of my life. Strike me down now and let us not wait for jellyfish or sharks or else please stick by me and let me get there.
April 22, 2014 The Complexities Of A Moment Felt: The Lance Olsen Interview Interview by Scott Espositoquarterly conversationDreamlives of DebrisLance Olsen :::: debris I have my doll and the screamings behind my eyelids. The screamings look like fluttery lights. The fluttery lights believe they live inside me, but I live inside them too. My doll’s name is Catastrophe.
:::: debris I say once, I say now, I say hours, days, weeks, but I do not understand myself: Down here time is a storm-swarmed ship always breaking up.
:::: debris Search as I might over the years, if one may call them that, and not something else—miscalculations, for instance—I have never ferreted out the guarded portal. Surely it exists in the same way, say, future dictionaries exist.
Two Poems Nina CassianSummer X-Rays Nina Cassian I. Fabulous days with endless swims, with algae around my waist and convex tears on my cheeks. Far away on the shore: children shouting, dogs with golden rings circling their muzzles, and rumors of abandoned memories. I know what's awaiting me— the winter of my discontent. I have a reservation outside on a hard bench holding a bag of frostbitten potatoes. That's why I swim so far out, willing prisoner inside the sea's immense green magnifying glass.
The BoatOdilon Redon c.1900
Where next for media theory?McKenzie WarkPublic Seminar CommonsWhere next for media theory? I’m thankful to Geert Lovink for his recent provocation on this question. Lovink thinks we have entered a post-Snowden era of media. So called ‘new’ media is dead, just as God is dead. Or, to vary the frame of reference, the ebullient schizo era of anything could happen gave way to the paranoid reaction.Hermes on the Hudson: Notes on Media Theory after SnowdenGeert Lovinke-flux
... unlike Lovink I can’t see the Snowden moment as all that decisive, but it is the case that the future once dreamt for ‘new media’ has been foreclosed. It is a victim of its success. Actually existing new media, like actually existing communism, falls short of the utopian projection. Its time to propose quite other futures, to locate other zones of virtuality from which other futures might seed.
In short: the point of media theory is – as Lovink suggests – a speculative one. But its task is not so much to fabulate futures as to describe in concepts what practices of relation, of pasts into presents and toward futures, could be. Looking at the excessive arc of ‘new’ media since the nineties, I think we won the battle and lost the war. Social movements around free information and new community broke through the carapace of old media. We won! And then a new ruling class of figured out how to commodify our emergent gift economies at a higher level of abstraction. We lost! Well, too bad. Time to regroup and try something else. This moment of defeat includes an inevitable return to the fantasy of a romance with the outside. Let’s leave social media behind! Let’s take no more selfies! Let’s only commune face-to-face while we sup on artisanal kale chips by the fire in our lumberjack shirts, brushing the crumbs from our flowing beards! This is the problem with a lot of what I can only call late critique of media. It hasn’t learned a whole lot from media theory. It rests on the old saw of some organic, whole, romantic other that has been lost and can be restored. But as we have known since Donna Haraway at the latest: there’s no going back. We are made of media. We are made of technology.
On the Horizon, the Angel of Certitude, and in the Dark Sky, A Questioning GlanceOdilon Redon 1882
It Is Time for the Violence and Gender Journal Mary Ellen O'TooleViolence and Gender 1:1
The mission of Violence and Gender is to identify and critically analyze biological, cultural, psychological, social, spiritual, anthropological, and environmental factors that influence males and even females to act violently. Are males, in fact, more violent than females? Do both sexes act out violently but in different ways? Are there different influencing factors that impact violent behavior for each sex? Violence and Gender will explore these questions and more by confronting controversial, even unsettling issues to determine the complex relationship between gender and violence. Violence is complicated and too often misunderstood, myth-based, and stereotyped. We are shocked when we see the “nice guy” next door arrested for serial murder, or when the quiet loner goes on a shooting rampage. Many of us even default to using terms like “monster” and “evil” to explain such behavior and the people responsible. These archaic terms don't educate us or explain the violence but rather catapult us back into the 14th century when werewolves and vampires were blamed for acts of violence. In the wake of September 11, and the event in Norway when Anders Breivik shot and killed 77 people, and more recently at the theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, as well as the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and the bombings at the Boston Marathon, there has been an outcry for explanations as to why young males act so violently. In light of these events and the resulting controversies, Mary Ann Liebert, president and CEO of Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers, decided it is time to take on these critical questions about gender and violence. As a result of Mary Ann's insight and vision, Violence and Gender was created. Her goal of a journal that will be provocative, educational, and extremely insightful will be realized through her diverse staff of assistants, editors, experts, contributors, and readers.
The Rhetoric of ViolenceChris Hedges
Spring 1883Odilon Redon b. April 20, 1840Birth of ThanaticismMcKenzie WarkPublic Seminar CommonsWe no longer have public intellectuals; we have public idiots. Anybody with a story or a ‘game-changing’ idea can have some screen time, so long as it either deflects attention from thanaticism, or better – justifies it. Even the best of this era’s public idiots come off like used car salesmen. It is not a great age for the rhetorical arts.I don't know why we still call it capitalism. It seems to be some sort of failure or blockage of the poetic function of critical thought. Even its adherents have no problem calling it capitalism any more. Its critics seem to be reduced to adding modifiers to it: postfordist, neoliberal, or the rather charmingly optimistic ‘late’ capitalism. A bittersweet term, that one, as capitalism seems destined to outlive us all. I awoke from a dream with the notion that it might make more sense to call it thanatism, after Thanatos, son of Nyx (night) and Erebos(darkness), twin of Hypnos (sleep), as Homer and Hesiod seem more or less to agree.Public Seminar
Perhaps its no accident that the privatization of space appears on the horizon as an investment opportunity at just this moment when earth is going to the dogs. The ruling class must know it is presiding over the depletion of the earth. So they are dreaming of space-hotels. They want to not be touched by this, but to still have excellent views. It makes perfect sense that in these times agencies like the NSA are basically spying on everybody. The ruling class must know that they are the enemies now of our entire species. They are traitors to our species being. So not surprisingly they are panicky and paranoid. They imagine we’re all out to get them. And so the state becomes an agent of generalized surveillance and armed force for the defense of property. The role of the state is no longer managing biopower. It cares less and less about the wellbeing of populations. Life is a threat to capital and has to be treated as such. The role of the state is not to manage biopower but to manage thanopower. From whom is the maintenance of life to be withdrawn first? Which populations should fester and die off? First, those of no use as labor or consumers, and who have ceased already to be physically and mentally fit for the armed forces.
Tête coupéeOdilon Redon 1878
So we sing "Happy Birthday" to ourselves as we poke our ways into the coming shenanigans by our idiot and totally corrupt leaders like Paul "the Pious Catholic" Ryan; Mitch "Old South Numbskull" O'Connell; Ted "Superstupid" Cruz; the twelve dumbasses on our Supreme(ly Dumb) Court (of jesters); Hillary "Presidential Wife Turned Inept Politician" Clinton; the corrupt Bushes; John "Bonehead" Boehner; our current President; and, if We the Stupidest People on Earth elect Hillary "Hillbilly" Clinton or (God help us) Jeb "the Reb" Bush, then we'll have four more years of poking our fat cats in their bulging bellies as they go about legislating totally anti-human, inane, polluting, rewards and more tax loopholes for the rich and famous and more deregulating what little regulations are left on our criminal corporations as they close down more American factories and send them over to Red China, or Communist Vietnam, or Taiwan, or India, or Brazil or they foreclose on more of our homes in order to return them to the communities as high-end rental units...we mean, to put it precisely, more of the same old bullshit.
Still Life with Coffee Mill
b. April 20, 1893
Leftism and the Banausic Thinker: From Plato to Verso
waggishThis is an essay about defining one’s self as better than the world, as purer than the world. The urge to take your marbles and go home is a very old one, yet its role in art and politics is paradoxical, since taking your marbles and going home would seem to suggest that you will be ineffectual and unremembered. In fact, I think that is what happens most of the time. But the purist’s ability to survive latently in society owes to a peculiar form of elitism. Sometimes the elitism is obvious; other times it hides under a mask of ideology.
...(more)Poems on Surveillanceboston reviewAndante and Filibuster
Remember last month, when he was saying
doomed lovers’ syndrome uproots us all?
They all wanna hear that,
and hanging them out to dry slumpingly caresses
the center for new needs, and we’ll stiffen some near
the walled city and find 100 per cent electricity of the vote.
(Not sure about that.) Funny you should ask.
We got a small grant to have the house inspected and
as a result of that discovered a small crack
leading from the front door to the basement.
Much thinner air here, although the nation’s salt and pepper
sprinkle the neighborhood. Hose her down. Keep trying
to creep out, test ingot possibilities.
Maureen N. McLane
Cathy Park Hong
1924from The IcelandHiroaki Sato on Hagiwara Sakutaro
Translated from the Japanese by Hiraoki SatoA Crow of Nihility...(more)
translated from the Japanese by Hiraoki Sato
I was originally a crow of nihility
on that high roof of winter solstice I'll open my mouth
and roar like a weathervane.
Whether the season has epistemology or not
what I do not have is everything.
The Birth of the World
1925The Sponge of Sleep
The woods are sorry for them.
Small rain will land somewhere.
...(more)April 21, 2014
April 18, 2014
Gabriel García Márquez
March 6, 1927 - April 17, 2014
Graciela Iturbide - 1992
Read 10 Short Stories by Gabriel García Márquez Free Online
(Plus More Essays & Interviews)
The Space between Languages
translated from the German by Julia Sherwood(....)Radka Denemarková on translating Herta Müller
There is not a single Romanian sentence in any of my books. But Romanian is always with me when I write because it has grown into my way of seeing the world.
It is from the space between languages that images emerge. Each sentence is a way of looking at things, crafted by its speakers in a very particular way. Each language sees the world differently, inventing its entire vocabulary from its own perspective and weaving it into the web of its grammar in its own way. Each language has different eyes sitting inside its words.
translated from the Czech by Julia Sherwood(....)
Her sentences are like the incisions of a scalpel. She keeps writing one book that runs like endlessly long hair; it sticks in the reader's gullet and can't be vomited up. The father she can no longer seek out, the mother she no longer wants. You can swallow a mulberry or a plum.
I did swallow it. I translated The Passport and The Hunger Angel after finishing my own novel, Kobold. For over two years, while I worked on my book, the difficult themes kept swelling up, infiltrating the language, cementing the banks of the story. When the time of intense brooding was over I was happy to shed the text, like skin. The exhausted writer in me was in dire need of a rest. I had never dreamt of translating. But the translator in me hastened to my rescue, deflecting my thoughts.
"My Head is a Garden"
Space Teriyaki 7
Visions of space and the future
in Japan in the 70s and 80s
_______________________Samual R. Delany talks with Charles Bernstein about genres, sex, and dyslexia in this wide-ranging conversation with the polymathic author. Delany addresses the role of fantasy and the bounds of imagination in his works and rebuts assumptions about the nature of genre writing. _______________________
The Un-X-able Y-ness of Z-ing (Q): A List with Notes
From Esther Allen, Sean Cotter, and Russell Valentino, eds., The Man Between: The Life and Legacy of Michael Heim, Translator(....)
Milan Kundera opposed using "the unbearable lightness of being" to title the English translation of his Nesnesitelná lehkost bytí, even though it is relatively close to the Czech original. “I realize that for you Americans the title will be a bit hard-going," Kundera states in Michael Heim's account,“so we can try something else,” and he suggested one of the chapter titles: “Karenin’s Smile.” I protested. “We’re not children,” I told the editor. “If The Unbearable Lightness of Being is the title, so be it.” And so it stayed. [Adriana Babeti, "A Happy Babel," Iowa Review]Heim's translation, like a spot of dye, dropped into the flow of culture and altered the hue of English as it diffused downstream. A meme before memes, the breadth of this title's reach lets us see something we know is true but can rarely prove: translation choices transform our language and our experience of the world. The list in this essay is drawn from internet and library catalog searches of article, chapter, blog, and book titles for variations on the translation.
the unbearable lightness of meaning
the unbearable lightness of acting
the unbearable lightness of community
the unbearable lightness of exodus
the unbearable lightness of sight
the unbearable lightness of games
the unbearable lightness of the climate change industrial complex
the unbearable lightness of anthropology
Heim's gallant defense of American intellectual pride has been seconded, and thirded, and thousandthed, by writers who fit their own titles into the algebra of these abstract words. It has become an English given, a linguistic formula like Raymond Carver's "what we talk about when we talk about [x]" or R. F. C. Hull's "zen and the art of [x]." The English words that Heim poured into the Czech original have become the form where other authors cast their words.
the unbearable wine-ness of being a light
the unbearable busy-ness of being
the unbearable rambo-ness of being
the unbearable sade-ness of being
the unbearable panda-ness of being
the unbearable stuff-ness of being
the unbearable khaki-ness of being
the unbearable bro-ness of being
the unbearable wasp-ness of being
the unbearable clown-ness of being
the unbearable madness of being
Falling somewhere between pun and prayer, each repetition explores a possible application of the translated title to a new topic. En masse, they offer a visual, graphic testament to Heim's intuition of American culture and literary value....(more)
b. April 18, 1884
Matthew Zapruder: Two Poems
lemon houndWhat Can Poetry Do
In Africa people are angry.
They are climbing embassy walls
and burning whatever is there.
Each time I click on some words
and read what we call news
although it is always too old
I feel certain some people
while I was reading have died.
I know I am here merely reading.
I just sit in my room and worry.
As always I can do nothing
So I close all the portals and go
deep in my mind to discover
something about Tunisia.
Civil disobedience for an age of total surveillance
The case of Edward Snowden
William E. Scheuerman
... Sadly, one of our most eloquent critics of state surveillance now finds himself, partly because of the Obama's administration's draconian response, at the whim of a former KGB spymaster. Recently, in Brazil, Germany and elsewhere, a lively debate has erupted about the possibility that Snowden – who only gained temporary asylum from the Russians – might now be granted asylum there.
Even though media sources have reported extensively both on his quest for asylum and his travails in Putin's Russia, they have failed to impart a satisfactory sense of the weighty moral and political reflections which apparently induced the then 29-year Snowden to give up his six-figure salary and comfortable life in Hawaii. As I hope to show, Snowden's public declarations – and especially an illuminating yet neglected statement he made at the Moscow Airport on 12 July 2013 when reluctantly accepting Russia's offer of asylum – show that Snowden has thought long and hard about the fundamental question of when and how citizens of a liberal democratic state are morally and politically obliged to violate the law.
April 17, 2014
Domenico Gnoli (3 May 1933 - 17 April 1970)The Sleepers Walt Whitman
I stand in the dark with drooping eyes by the worst-suffering and the most restless, I pass my hands soothingly to and fro a few inches from them, The restless sink in their beds—they fitfully sleep. Now I pierce the darkness—new beings appear, The earth recedes from me into the night, I saw that it was beautiful, and I see that what is not the earth is beautiful. I go from bedside to bedside—I sleep close with the other sleepers, each in turn, I dream in my dream all the dreams of the other dreamers, And I become the other dreamers.
The homeward bound, and the outward bound, The beautiful lost swimmer, the ennuyé, the onanist, the female that loves unrequited, the money-maker, The actor and actress, those through with their parts, and those waiting to commence, The affectionate boy, the husband and wife, the voter, the nominee that is chosen, and the nominee that has fail’d, The great already known, and the great any time after to-day, The stammerer, the sick, the perfect-form’d, the homely, The criminal that stood in the box, the judge that sat and sentenced him, the fluent lawyers, the jury, the audience, The laugher and weeper, the dancer, the midnight widow, the red squaw, The consumptive, the erysipelite, the idiot, he that is wrong’d, The antipodes, and every one between this and them in the dark, I swear they are averaged now—one is no better than the other, The night and sleep have liken’d them and restored them. I swear they are all beautiful; Every one that sleeps is beautiful—everything in the dim light is beautiful, The wildest and bloodiest is over, and all is peace.
Sleep as Resistance Hejinian, Whitman, and more on the politics of sleep. Siobhan Phillips
Sleep is strange—“[s]tranger than habit and than obsession,” Lyn Hejinian writes in The Book of a Thousand Eyes. • She could be talking about poetry. It’s an old connection, of course, older than the Romantics—who seem prescient, in the light of contemporary science, when they propose the jump-cuts of dreaming as a model not just for poetry but also for knowing, full stop. (“He awoke and found it truth,” Keats writes, comparing the imagination to “Adam’s dream.”) In The Book of a Thousand Eyes, published in 2012, Hejinian reconsiders. She wants to figure out what sleep can do for the chance of cognition. She also wants to test what sleep means for the promise of politics.
Another recent book, this one in prose, suggests an answer. Published last year, Jonathan Crary’s : Late Capitalism and the Ends of Sleep begins with the effect of digital culture on our sense of time. A world that is always “on”—the irony of “sleep” mode is that it avoids turning off a device—entices or requires humans to be the same. Gradually, we comply: we get less and less rest every night, we rise to check phones or tablets in the wee hours, we pretend work is leisure as we run the hamster wheel of social-media clicks. For Crary, a professor of art history, the life of digital timelessness manifests the most basic and inexorable drive of capitalism, which would shrink whatever is not producing or consuming. Sleep occupies that vanishing margin. Sleep does not want to be productive. “Sleep,” Crary writes, “poses the idea of a human need and interval of time that cannot be colonized and harnessed to a massive engine of profitability.”
How deeply we are lost! So deep that we do not know we are lost. How derelict we are! So great that we do not know our dereliction. Boredom, deeper than anything even a Zen Buddhist would know. There are revelations here. Things to be seen. The absence of revelation. The absence of things to be seen. Waiting – for what? Waiting for nothing. Waiting, become intransitive. Waiting, detached from all object. The real drama is elsewhere. Everything is happening somewhere else. The suburbs: offstage. The suburbs: diversion. A kind of decoy.
City SidewalkDomenico Gnoli
The half-life of disaster Brian Massumi
... It is not so much that the horror is replaced by human warmth and its accompaniments. It is rather that it "decays" in the media. The horror transmutes into a different affective element, its intensity halved, then halved again, eventually reducing to trace levels. Globally, the event settles back into a more stable range of the periodic table of collective emotion.(....)
Natural disaster and terrorism define the poles of disaster. In between stretches a continuum of disaster, a plenum of frightful events of infinite variety, at every scale, coming one after the other in an endless series. The media plays its role of affective conversion with a regularity that is as predictable as each event in the series, taken separately, is shockingly unforeseen. First the affective strike of the event is instantaneously transmitted, cutting a shocked-and-awed hole of horror into the fabric of the everyday. The ability to make sense of events is suspended in a momentary hiatus of humanly unbearable, unspeakable horror. Then comes the zoom-in to the human detail. Stories get human traction. The horror is alloyed, its impact archived. Another event has been affectively conveyed with irruptive, interruptive force, only to subside into the background of everyday life. What remains is a continuous, low-level fear. This fear doesn't stand out clearly as an emotion. It is more like a habitual posture, an almost bodily bracing for the next unforeseen blow, a tensing infusing every move and every moment with a vague foreboding. This trace-form anticipation – this post-shock pre-posturing – becomes the very medium of everyday life. The environment of life is increasingly lived as a diffuse and foreboding "threat environment". It is almost a relief when the next hit comes. It is only another bout of disaster that will enable the narrative balm to calm again the collective nerves of a humanity permanently on low-level boil.
AdamFederico García LorcaTranslated by Robert Friend A tree of blood has stained the early dawn where the new mother groans; her voice has left sharp crystals in the wound and on the window pane a print of bones. While ever faithful, the arriving light hushes to white boundaries of fable the quiver of the veins in their flight towards the opaque coolness of the apple. And Adam dreams in the fever of his clay of a child who galloping draws nearer in the double throbbing of his cheek, towards day. But a darker Adam in his dream is turning towards a moon of stone, seedless and neuter, where the child of light will be burning.The Drunken Boat Fall 2013/Winter 2014 Centenery Feature Robert Friend1913 - 1998
illustration for the first edition of The Baron in the Trees by Italo Calvino (Il Barone rampante, 1957) Domenico Gnoli
April 15, 2014
view looking southwest
November 28, 1910
Eugene de Salignac
Three Berlin Essays
translated by Brian Henry
When someone’s presence on the street becomes imperceptible as the presence of the street becomes imperceptible in this person. Mommsenstraße, Kastanienallee, Akazienstraße have moved to the shady side, to the side of obvious everyday life, going from admiration of exceptional things to inventory. Within the least expected lurks alienation, which demonstrates that it is only for the illusion of tradition, the illusion, that keeps my attention on a short leash. Sometimes it is enough that some bored dog barks. Midflinch I see at the intersection an excursion bus. A tourist guide with microphone in hand eagerly explains. I cannot hear the words, but I have a feeling I know everything she relates. Facing forward alongside the driver, with a gaze firmly directed through the front pane. This guide is me. Since I left the apartment, this continuous speech is performed in me. I speak and speak, without a dictionary and a map, aimlessly loafing. Only when the bus moves forward do I notice that it’s empty, except for the driver and guide in the bus there is no one the relating would be intended for, no one in this city of three and a half million who would hear what I speak and speak, only my footsteps and my monologue. ...(more)
b. April 15, 1904
Since I must hold to the gradual in
this, as no revolution but a slow change
like the image of snow. The challenge is
not a moral excitement, but the expanse,
the continuing patience
dilating into forms so
much more than compact.
I would probably not even choose to inhabit the
wish as delay: it really is dark and the knowledge
of the unseen is a warmth which spreads into
the level ceremony of diffusion. The quiet
suggests that the act taken
extends so much further, there
is this insurgence of form:
we are more pliant than the mercantile notion
of choice will determine-we go in this way
on and on and the unceasing image of hope
is our place in the world. ...
Prynne week: Biting the Air
And this is the final three stanzas of the sixth poem:told to you, root and branch slope managementThere’s gloriously complex things that appear to be going on here. Starting with the obvious ‘medical’ words: pharmaceutical, flatline, infirm, generic, rib, lips, vaccine and life exemption- I’m taking this to indicate that the poem is making direct comment on the issues that beset modern medicine rather than using this particular malaise to talk about something else. Of course, he may be doing both but I’m going to stick with medicine as medicine for the moment.
at onrush unpaired and less compact, generic death
as possession on nil return. Which way the novice
points trail off, they say the same on the block
new level rib, spit your lips. Be quick, be
long to pump anger revivalism, percolate thick
forest scarps dug yet deeper. Get a vaccine on
shipment perish thread your face why yours
if told more, stable on a tilted capital feed
suspected more often. Give out a version amplified
with strings to obligate a boundary check, felt
damp echo ethic manipulate its life exemption.
Little Neck Bridge
Eugene de Salignac
Mental Ears and Poetic Work [pdf]
J. H. Prynne(....)
The poet works with mental ears. Via this specialized audition the real-time sounds of speech and vocalized utterance are disintegrated into sub-lexical acoustic noise by analogy with the striking clatter of real work in the material world. Plus also bird-song, weather sounds, and the cognates. From this first reduction the array of voice-sounds can then be transposed into a textual constellation in which composi- tional purpose begins to remake the anecdotal variety of actual speech. By this means the sociology of utterance-occasions is part-replaced by the textuality of a language domain.^ All human speech performance operates by hybridizing the components of possible word narratives; but the textual domain is an intermediary condition very specific to poetic work."* This domain is constructed from the realized human sounds of words in voluble sequence, utterance as carried through to expression by the apportionment of phrase and sentence and the paragraph or strophic boundaries of their profession, the mental span of serial completions.' Written discourse projects into a representa- tional text-composure the altered acoustics of speech events, real and conjectural. But the discourse of poetry installs a variable set of yet further dimensions.
Jeremy Prynne lectures on Maximus IV, V, VI 12
Simon Fraser University, July 27, 1971
Transcribed by Tom McGauley
An Introduction to the Poetry of J.H.Prynne
by Rod Mengham and John Kinsella
J. H. Prynne's POEMS
The Right to be Unidentified with This Work
"Scheming for the possible world":
J.H. Prynne's The White Stones and The English Intelligencer
Reactualising the Unfigurable:
Difficulty and Resistance in Translating J. H. Prynne
This paper explores aspects of translating J. H. Prynne's poetry into Chinese in relation to notions of difficulty and resistance. Through juxtaposing two poems by Prynne and the Tang Dynasty poet Du Fu, the paper argues that translating Prynne alerts the reader-translator to the very nature of poetic figuration. Poetic writing and translating have to do with (re)imagining the actual as contingent possibilities of the real, which is in principle not fully accessible or figurable. The in-betweenness of the two languages in translation constitutes an outside to both. The relative autonomy of this non-place encourages intercultural translation as a potentialisation of the actual.
Good Hope Road
We Are All Very Anxious
Theses on Anxiety and Why It is Effectively Preventing Militancy, and One Possible Strategy for Overcoming It
Reposted with the kind permission of the Institute for Precarious Consciousness
The nervousness of politicsPrecarity is a machine for anxiety; austerity is a machine for making-vulnerable; psychopathology is the machinery of alienation.
The article links anxiety to precarity, correctly pointing out that anxiety is the obvious affective response to a systemic uncertainty and fears that lack concrete objects. It also links it to securitisation, but I think we should also link it to the related militarisation of urban spaces and, beyond that, to the climate of catastrophe in which we live. There are how many impending disasters on the horizon? Not one we can respond to as bodies that experience a collective threat as individual.
I've written about TMT (Terror Management Theory) elsewhere and I intend to return to it on here, as I think it is invaluable to understanding our ontological vulnerability and to the development of an anarchist theory of psychology. Consider what the TMT researchers found in the wake of 9/11, a moment of "mortality salience" and death anxiety on a cultural and national scale. In response to the greatest trauma on the American psyche in recent history the response was an increase in a fervent nationalism, increased intolerance of dissent, more hostility and violence towards people who are different, a desire for revenge and a need to find heroes (whether they be American soldiers going out for revenege, or the firefighters at the scene of the devastation), as well as a desire to help in the cause. In a chapter for a (hopefully) forthcoming book I've written on how capital and governments like to expose us to anxiogenic conditions, to expose us to our vulnerability, in order to illicit precisely these effects. This is the necropolitical side of biopolitics and to my mind it is this that current strategies of the decomposition of labour aim at: the capture, intensification and even production of anxiety.
A popular unconscious admission today: keep calm and carry on. Keep calm: This is how the open secret of anxiety, of nerves, and the injunction to destimulate is expressed today. Even our despair is sold back to us; even the recovery of our nervous systems. Carry on: stay in the holding pattern of your safety behaviours, don't go too far, don't go astray. The denial of anxiety and the denial of communism displaced and compressed into one compact knotted slogan.At the moment I'm working with others to create an online space for a new militant mental health movement, and to set up something similar to the Institute for Precarious Consciousness. ...(more)
Anarchism’s Other Scene: Materializing the Ideal and Idealizing the Material
Duane Rousselle, Jason Adams
Ontological Anarché: Beyond Materialism and Idealism
Anarchist Developments in Cultural Studies
No 2 (2013)
April 14, 2014“The Tuesday scowls, the Wednesday growls, the Thursday curses, the Friday howls, the Saturday snores, the Sunday yawns, the Monday morns, the Monday morns. The whacks, the moans, the cracks, the groans, the welts, the squeaks, the belts, the shrieks, the pricks, the prayers, the kicks, the tears, the skelps, and the yelps.” - Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot
Samuel Beckettb. April 13, 1906Paris, 1964Gisèle Freund“Unfortunately I am afraid, as always, of going on. For to go on means going from here, means finding me, losing me, vanishing and beginning again, a stranger first, then little by little the same as always, in another place, where I shall say I have always been, of which I shall know nothing, being incapable of seeing, moving, thinking, speaking, but of which little by little, in spite of these handicaps, I shall begin to know something, just enough for it to turn out to be the same place as always, the same which seems made for me and does not want me, which I seem to want and do not want, take your choice, which spews me out or swallows me up, I’ll never know, which is perhaps merely the inside of my distant skull where once I wandered, now am fixed, lost for tininess, or straining against the walls, with my head, my hands, my feet, my back, and ever murmuring my old stories, my old story, as if it were the first time.” - Samuel Beckett, The Unnamable
Robert Delaunay b. April 12, 1885
Levi R. Bryant: First Impressions on Onto-Cartography Craig Hickmannoir realismOnto-Cartography: An Ontology of Machines and MediaLevi R. BryantEdinburgh University PressFor a Renewal of Materialism [pdf]Introduction to Onto-Cartography
Realizing that the basic stuff of reality impacts not only our relations but all relations human or inhuman he opened his materialist eyes toward new ways of relating things. Over the years Levi has used several sliding terms to describe what things are, what the basic stuff of materialism is. But he was never truly satisfied so he came to the conclusion that he’d get out of the business of naming this object and leave our actual understanding of the basic units of matter to the appropriate domain of knowledge: science, and physics in particular. Instead he would deal with both the corporeal and incorporeal modes or forms within which matter structured or coupled itself. This is where his notions of machines comes in. He incorporates Ian Bogost’s notions of an alien phenomenology in which machines engage and interact with each other and ecologies within a milieu, and environment. There is not just one type of machine but a myriad, and because of this machines exist at different levels of reality and have an ontology that both constrains and affords these machines certain paths of possible interaction or movement. Because of this machine ontology is best understood as discovering the different ways these machines not only interact coupling and decoupling with each other, but also describing their operations, their input/outputs of flows of information, matter, and material incorporated within their activities. The major thrust of his work is to provide a mapping (Onto-Cartography) of these machine assemblages or ecologies across a spectrum of geophilosophical notions: cartography, deconstruction, and terraformation. Under cartography he provides four distinct types of map: cartographical maps, genetic maps, vector maps, and modal maps. Under deconstruction he offers traditional reading with an emphasis on the politics of oppression. And, under terraformation he offers a vision of worlds or ecologies or heterotopias: “alternatives that would allow people to escape the oppressive circumstances in which they live”.
The Gravity of Things: [pdf] An Introduction To Onto-Cartography Levi R. Bryant
Peculiar insects 1888James Ensor b. April 13, 1860
Climate change and post-politics: [pdf] Repoliticizing the present by imagining the future? Anneleen Kenis and Erik Mathijs...to create a space for imagining alternative futures, one must first fight post-political representations of the present. However, when politicization becomes an end in itself, the outreach of the movement, and therefore its capacity to repoliticize and stimulate the imagination of alternative futures, is constrained.Climate Crisis, Ideology, and Collective Action [pdf]Ted Stolze... given the imminent prospect of severe climate disruption, why as yet has there occurred relatively little collective action in response? Psychologist Daniel Gilbert thought he had the answer. In an opinion piece provocatively titled “If Only Gay Sex Caused Global Warming” Gilbert argued that the real psychological obstacle to effective action on climate change is that human brains have evolved to deal most effectively with threats that:• are intentional and personal; • violate our moral sensibilities; • are a clear and present danger; and • involve quick changes rather than gradual changesUnfortunately, as Greg Craven has noted, climate change has none of these properties; “[i]t is impersonal, morally neutral, in the future, and gradual, and we’re just not wired to watch out for stuff like that.”
Call climate change what it is: violence Rebecca SolnitIf you're poor, the only way you're likely to injure someone is the old traditional way: artisanal violence, we could call it – by hands, by knife, by club, or maybe modern hands-on violence, by gun or by car. But if you're tremendously wealthy, you can practice industrial-scale violence without any manual labor on your own part. You can, say, build a sweatshop factory that will collapse in Bangladesh and kill more people than any hands-on mass murderer ever did, or you can calculate risk and benefit about putting poisons or unsafe machines into the world, as manufacturers do every day. If you're the leader of a country, you can declare war and kill by the hundreds of thousands or millions. And the nuclear superpowers – the US and Russia – still hold the option of destroying quite a lot of life on Earth. So do the carbon barons. But when we talk about violence, we almost always talk about violence from below, not above.
... if we want to talk about violence and climate change – and we are talking about it, after last week's horrifying report from the world's top climate scientists – then let's talk about climate change as violence. Rather than worrying about whether ordinary human beings will react turbulently to the destruction of the very means of their survival, let's worry about that destruction – and their survival. Of course water failure, crop failure, flooding and more will lead to mass migration and climate refugees – they already have – and this will lead to conflict. Those conflicts are being set in motion now.
The Beach of Le Havre1963Emilio Grau Sala (1911-1975)
There was something more than a principle I abandoned, when I abandoned the equal distribution, it was a bodily need. But to suck the stones in the way I have described, not haphazard, but with method, was also I think a bodily need. Here then were two incompatible bodily needs, at loggerheads. Such things happen. But deep down I didn't give a tinker's curse about being off my balance, dragged to the right hand and the left, backwards and forewards. And deep down it was all the same to me whether I sucked a different stone each time or always the same stone, until the end of time. For they all tasted exactly the same. And if I had collected sixteen, it was not in order to ballast myself in such and such a way, or to suck them turn about, but simply to have a little store, so as never to be without. But deep down I didn't give a fiddler's curse about being without, when they were all gone they would be all gone, I wouldn't be any the worse off, or hardly any. And the solution to which I rallied in the end was to throw away all the stones but one, which I kept now in one pocket, now in another, and which of course I soon lost, or threw away, or gave away, or swallowed ...
April 11, 2014
photo - mw
Tunneling through the self
On Hoa Nguyen's 'As Long as Trees Last'
Christopher KondrichLiving with As Long as Trees Last, Hoa Nguyen’s latest collection of poetry, is akin to living with Charles Olson — his endless exuberance, wide-ranging curiosity, and aesthetic agility, as well as his famous invocation of the body as a tunnel through which one must go to know more truly the self and the world around it. “Down through the workings of [the poet’s] own throat to that place where breath comes from,” he writes in Projective Verse, is the path to becoming “participant in the larger force.”some poems by Hoa Nguyen 123
Living with As Long as Trees Last is also akin to living with John Cage — the attention to silence, to the music of reality, to the harmonies and disharmonies that make a life. I think of the presence evoked by his work, of being present to the world, bringing one’s instruments to the stage of the world and allowing the world to play.
Olson and Cage are present in As Long as Trees Last on every page, egging on Nguyen from behind the stage, giving her the theoretical foundation upon which she builds and builds and builds her own vision, one marked by the harmonies and disharmonies of language, thought, and feeling that she reached down into herself to get. The discordant bells of jagged syntax and juxtaposed imagery ring often in the book, discordant in the way a life is lived with anxiety and ferocity, but these bells that ring discordantly also ring true. They ring true in the way Cage’s work rings those everyday sounds, allowing presence and attunement to the oft-neglected disharmonies of reality, but with Olson’s exuberance and his boundless will to break the self off into pieces of the outside world.
Hoa Nguyen’s “As Long As Trees Last”
reviewed by Dana Drori
Hoa Nguyen on remaining inside mysteries and the alien alphabets of dreams
A conversation with Hoa Nguyen part 1 and 2
As Long As Trees Last By Hoa Nguyen
Reviewed by Dan Shewan
b. April 11, 1893
"Unhappiness, Guanajuato"“Escaping melancholia is as unnatural as fasting or chastity. It is Culture along with the powers that be who have convinced us that smiling, which, as everyone knows, not only feels but also looks unnatural, is the face’s most positive expression. Chasing Culture’s promise of Happiness—a mirage, at best—is as ludicrous and destined to failure as those imbecile rodents who follow each other off a cliff.”
Pablo Piñero Stillmann
Electric LiteratureAs much as it might seem incredible to someone like you or I, happiness, wait, Happiness, hasn’t always had a positive connotation for everyone. This will be easier to accept if you consider that no one thing has been anything, always, for everyone. Most things have been many things for at least some people. Nothing has at times meant Everything and at others meant Some Things. For long stretches of time Nothing actually meant nothing. But I must stop myself because I have the tendency to spin uncontrollably into spirals of confusion and—sometimes—complete nonsense.
Translated from the French by Joshua Clover.
For those who persist “like” Rimbaud, after the flood, in the hive-chaos of big cities, modern industrial and postindustrial societies, those of the western “democratic” empire, the leading sentiment remains that results from the fact that democracy signifies for the moment capitalism, the regime of liberty and liberalism (work, finance, exploitation, profit) — and this democratic capitalism, the polluted air which we breathe, moreover appears as the ultimate and definitive, and for that matter “natural,” form of social life. There is, there will have been, no alternative. Thus the necessity to qualify, to specify: parliamentary, or rather, today, mediatic-parliamentary, democracy, liberal democracy, but also, because quotation marks are there if we try to retrieve, that is to say reappropriate, the word and the thing, “true democracy,” as Marx said, or “wild democracy,” or “radical democracy,” or “insurgent democracy” (as Miguel Abensour suggested, democracy in a permanent state of emergence and constructive critique), or even “democracy without limits” as proposed by Rosa Luxemburg in opposition to “bourgeois democracy.” She subjected “democracy” under quotation marks to an examination of limits and internal contradictions wherein she observed, as did Rimbaud, two closely linked antidemocratic dimensions: militarism and colonialism, the importance of the military apparatus being linked on the one hand to the containment and repression of popular insurrectionary movements, and on the other hand to imposing on the colonized by force of arms the benefits of western economic exploitation and domination.
Thus there is for those, among whom I am one, who continue to read and write within that which we name poetry (that is to say, who situate themselves marginally within the practice of literature itself grown culturally secondary and minor), essentially the consciousness of not being much in phase with democracy as ambient value, as political ideology and as form of government, the feeling of being in no regard represented by the professional politicians and others who themselves are manipulated and ventriloquized by the holds of real power (that of the globalized economy), and with an insuperable sense of paralysis or choking powerlessness. The words slide around, it is enough just to listen. ...(more)
video from The Pacific Centre for Technology and CultureWendy Brown, Governmentality in the Age of NeoliberalismVanishing Surveillance: Securityscapes and Ambient Government
Wendy Brown and Arthur Kroker: A Conversation
David Murakami Wood
Frontispiece for the Book of the Tree
What Happened to Canada?“You won’t recognize Canada when I’m through with it.”
- Stephen Harper
n+1(....)via empty bottle
These are not changes born in the hearts and minds of the Canadian people, but an agenda designed and implemented from above, articulated in an imported conservative ideology, to abet the interests of private industry. Some of that agenda, like the shocking attack on Canada’s environmental research community, has been implemented so swiftly and unilaterally that the public is just now catching up. Other aspects, like the undermining of the country’s universal health care system, have been imposed more gradually, a death by a thousand cuts combined with a relentless propaganda campaign.
What is happening in Canada is part of a much larger trend: the formidable disciplinary forces of late capitalism are exerting themselves everywhere, including in other western democracies, where governments are scaling back social programs while lavishing tax concessions and subsidies on industry. The European Union and the United States are similarly absorbing market shocks on behalf of business while allowing downturns to undermine the poor and working class. If Canada is becoming indulgent of, even slavish toward, its resource industry (the biggest contributor to GDP), it is arguably no more so than the United States in relation to its banking sector, which was never brought to heel despite causing the 2008 collapse.
Still, the drastic turn in Canadian politics and policy raises some urgent questions. Why hasn’t the population stopped the attack on its public services? Why have left-leaning parties lost ground at the polls while Harper and his ilk continue getting reelected? Why, in a society with a more collectively oriented spirit, has the political discourse taken a sharp turn to the right?
Voter Suppression in Canada
Kant, Nietzsche and the idealization of friendship into nihilism
Paul van Tongeren
Kriterion vol.54 no.128Abstract
Is friendship still possible under nihilistic conditions? Kant and Nietzsche are important stages in the history of the idealization of friendship, which leads inevitably to the problem of nihilism. Nietzsche himself claims on the one hand that only something like friendship can save us in our nihilistic condition, but on the other hand that precisely friendship has been unmasked and become impossible by these very conditions. It seems we are struck in the nihilistic paradox of not being allowed to believe in the possibility of what we cannot do without. Literary imagination since the 19th century seems to make us even more skeptical. Maybe Beckett provides an illustration of a way out that fits well to Nietzsche's claim that only "the most moderate, those who do not require any extreme articles of faith" will be able to cope with nihilism.
April 10, 2014
Pothmeor Beach 1928Ben Nicholson1894 - 1982
Book of Wander W. G. Sebald's unsystematic search Damion Searlsbookforum
Reading these novels and his first to be translated into English, The Emigrants, was a high point in many people’s cultural life. If you’re someone who hears the tones of W. G. Sebald’s voice at all, it is hard to keep from coming hopelessly under its sway. His quivering sensitivity and thoughtful melancholy seemed to express, like nothing else, what life at the end of the twentieth century meant for anyone aware of the holocausts underlying the various triumphalisms one was expected to get on board with. Not everyone can eagerly turn their face away from the devastating past and toward the super-duper future, and for those of us who couldn’t, Sebald offered irresistible arias of historical aftermath. (A math is a mowing, so aftermath encodes a specific image, which Sebald used, of sheaves laid low, scythed down in the field. It used to be a positive word, referring to a second harvest the same season—not anymore.)
... Sebald never just found connections or followed links; he made them, made them new. Sebald’s work is not encyclopedic, because it lacks any drive for totality or pretense of completeness—he follows whim, goes wherever things take him. In an interview, Sebald described his process this way:It’s a form of unsystematic searching. . . . One thing takes you to another, and you make something out of these haphazardly assembled materials. And, as they have been assembled in this random fashion, you have to strain your imagination in order to create a connection between the two things. If you look for things that are like the things that you have looked for before, then, obviously, they’ll connect up. But they’ll only connect up in an obvious sort of way, which actually isn’t, in terms of writing something new, very productive.The poet and translator Anne Carson once said something similar: “The things you think of to link are not in your own control. It’s just who you are, bumping into the world. But how you link them is what shows the nature of your mind.” Unsystematic searching, idiosyncratic linking: These are valuable as ever but harder to get to now, swamped as they are by the other kind. To the challenge of making imaginative connections has been added the challenge of making them visibly our own, off the preprogrammed, data-mined, hyperlinked grid.
St IvesBen Nicholson1943-5Deepwater VeeMelanie SiebertMcClellandDitchMelanie Siebertthe walrusThe Walrus
Strange how we go on looking in the lessening light, along the highway, looking for the things thieves pitched from the smashed windows of our van as they drove and rifled through: maps, gospel cassettes, ball gloves, receipts and sermon notes, sleeping bag and candles scattered over miles, deemed worthless, the ditches deep with grass, unmown. We’re steeped in the overrun, the laid low, the pooled and going nowhere, in the tremolo of early evening, mint-tinged, damp to the knees, even weeds and beer cans gleam as if belonging here: we are intent, walking without speaking, bending to gather each thing as if it had a broken wing, might have flown but landed wounded in the tall grass, beating. Strange how we go on as if things matter, as if this were a place where something essential could be found. Cars blow by. A whistling cowbird bends a tattered reed. We follow the light-licked papers sailing above the grass, the field encroaching, last winter’s road-salt leaching down.
Deepwater Vee reviewed by rob mclennan
One + One = Zero – Vanishing Text in Electronic Literature Marjorie C. Luesebrink electronic book revieweabstract
In “One + One = Zero,” Marjorie C. Luesebrink discusses “fleeting” messages and their implications for electronic literature. Beginning with a discussion of the popular social media app, Snapchat, Luesebrink considers a series of works of electronic literature that employ tropes of vanishing and inaccessibility to represent forgetfulness, limited perception, and the challenges posed by dynamic environments for contemporary readers. After tracing a path through two decades of digital practice, Luesebrink points to a future in which the vanishing text will continue to be a relevant site for literary innovation.
E-Literary Text in the Nomadic Cockpit Janez Strehovecelectronic book reviewabstract
In this essay, Janez Strehovec explores the literary from the “nomadic cockpit” everyday life in the 21st Century. More than merely being cocooned by screens, Strehovec’s metaphor describes the way in which our travel through the environment is layered with navigational data, environmental surveillance, communication systems, and tied into a dynamic feedback loop. From this vantage point, Strehovec considers a number of works of digital art and electronic literature that are written precisely to be read in motion, to explore the sensations of life in the nomadic cockpit.
The Internet’s Endless Argument and the New Shape of Debate Navneet Alanghazlitt... as I watch the kinds of people who seem forced to endure arguments with others—namely, women, people of colour, and other activists—I get the sense that the rules of rhetoric laid down by folk like Aristotle are especially unsuited to Twitter. More interestingly, though, maybe watching people on Twitter invent new rhetorical tactics suggests that what’s wrong with online discourse isn’t that it is hampered by constraint, but that there isn’t enough of it. After all, if you had to characterize Internet debate in one word, it would be “endless.” Free of the limits of time, space, and the need to look someone else in the eye, Internet argumentation has no natural stopping point, instead only ending when someone finally cries uncle. That unlimited space often gives rise to a kind of debate that works through attrition of attention and energy. “Here, let me ceaselessly argue and nitpick not only the topic at hand,” says the Internet debater, “but also every step of how you arrived at your position.” It’s a kind of hyper-ad hominem that, especially when you’ve been doing it for a few years, can make arguing online feel like an exercise in futility. As a result, it’s hard not to get the feeling that the application of pre-Internet rhetoric—the sort espoused by our Greek friend himself—simply doesn’t work well within a medium without limits.
Ben NicholsonThereafter by Melanie SiebertWinner of Lemon Hound's First Poetry Prize Thereafter the northern plains would be cattle country. I had paid off my younger self speaking of the highly contaminated water. The dust was slaloming through the postmodern footnotes. The sandhill cranes etc had refused treatment.