Berfrois

Kenneth Goldsmith: Is it all just wasted time (on the internet)?

Kenneth Goldsmith: Is it all just wasted time (on the internet)?

The notion that the Internet is bad for you seems premised on the idea that the Internet is one thing. In reality it’s a befuddling mix of the stupid...

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Digital Capital: Berfrois Interviews Kenneth Goldsmith

Digital Capital: Berfrois Interviews Kenneth Goldsmith

Painting reacted in a smart way to its crisis of representation and became something else. Writing didn’t...

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Lisa Marie Basile on Instagram Poets

Lisa Marie Basile on Instagram Poets

It was 2000. We were very, very poor, living in Elizabeth, NJ, and life was very much by-the-paycheck. Bear with me here; we're going to talk sob-story and then move onto the bigger picture.

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Elias Tezapsidis on Grimes

Elias Tezapsidis on Grimes

There is no reason to add to the already-extended online literature on the making of Grimes: she built a pop-persona: she “happened”...

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Hannah Pezzack on Amanda Lee Koe

Hannah Pezzack on Amanda Lee Koe

Instead of documenting Singaporean sub/culture in a derivative way, Koe’s stories focus on the mediation of identity, space and time.

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Scott Manley Hadley on Peter Stamm

Scott Manley Hadley on Peter Stamm

To The Back of Beyond is a beguiling novel with what initially appears to be a simple split-narrative structure. Thomas is a man of about 40 who walks out..

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Justin E. H. Smith: Notes on Yer

Justin E. H. Smith: Notes on Yer

In Old Church Slavonic there were two letters representing short vowels. These were called ‘yer’, and there were two species of them: the ‘front yer’, ‘ь’, and the ‘back yer’, ‘ъ’.

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Dominic O’Key and Caitlin Stobie on Okja

Dominic O’Key and Caitlin Stobie on Okja

by Dominic O’Key and Caitlin Stobie Okja, Netflix, 2017 Bong Joon-ho’s Okja (2017) is a weird, wonderful, and unashamedly pro-animal family drama. Made with the South Korean director’s signature bombast, the film’s maximalist aesthetic squeezes together action, comedy and horror to form an anti-capitalist adventure. Centring on one...

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Andrew Epstein on John Ashbery

Andrew Epstein on John Ashbery

This past Sunday, September 3, brought the very sad news that John Ashbery had passed away at the age of 90. Ashbery has long been regarded as the greatest and most influential living American poet.

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Ed Simon: First Twelve Observations about Goodness

Ed Simon: First Twelve Observations about Goodness

One fourteenth century morning in the village of Montalilou, a simple woman named Bartholomette d’Urs, who slept every evening in her bed next to her young son, awoke to find that her boy had died of some unknown cause in the night.

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Doll Life

Doll Life

Doll horror movies are rarely scary, which is strange given how uncanny many people find dolls themselves. Still, they have become a tired trope. As with clowns, the idea of the doll is at this point scarier than any on-screen reality.

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Splendid Grime

Splendid Grime

I have been reading Jason W. Moore’s Capitalism in the Web of Life — a book which helps to theorize the rise of the Biotariat. Moore writes, “all limits to capital emerge historically, out of the relations of humans with the rest of nature.

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Tiny Toons Played

Tiny Toons Played

Not long ago I dreamed of a shopping mall. It was not a mall I had ever visited before, or even a mall I had heard mentioned in casual conversation while standing in line at the grocery store or post office.

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Armed, Not Tentacled

Armed, Not Tentacled

In 1815, 15 years before he made his most famous print, The Great Wave, Hokusai published three volumes of erotic art. In one of them there is a woodcut print known in English as ‘The Dream of the Fisherman’s Wife’...

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Invited to the Best Parties

Invited to the Best Parties

We all know that a book can change the shape of history. Think The Communist Manifesto and Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis, not to mention the Bible and the Koran. But a book review? How much influence could a book review possibly have?

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‘Third Culture Kids have yet another filter to their perspective’

‘Third Culture Kids have yet another filter to their perspective’

It was a startling thing to me to realize that the African Americans in my college were so different from the Nigerians I had grown up with.

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So Unnatural an Activity

So Unnatural an Activity

To the uninitiated it can be hard to understand why anyone would go hiking. Today’s fleece- and Gore-Tex–clad masses may take for granted the attraction of spending weekends doing what...

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Jessica Sequeira on Mara Pastor

Jessica Sequeira on Mara Pastor

As a poetic symbol, the scar might seem to be hopelessly banal and overwrought. For Mara Pastor, the scar is not just a symbol for romantic pain...

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