Berfrois

Crocodile! Crocodile!

Crocodile! Crocodile!

Instead of page numbers, “The Crocodiles,” a novel by the Egyptian writer Youssef Rakha, is marked by 405 numbered, block paragraphs, the whole symmetrically framed by references to Allen Ginsberg.

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Is there an Indian way of thinking about politics?

Is there an Indian way of thinking about politics?

Rashtrapati Bhawan From The Caravan: Is there an Indian way of thinking? The poet and scholar AK Ramanujan considered the question at length in a celebrated essay on the subject. The answer, he decided, would depend on which word of the question one chose to stress. The same is...

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‘A one-armed man (or more precisely, The Man With One Arm) knocked Kimble out and escaped from the house…’

‘A one-armed man (or more precisely, The Man With One Arm) knocked Kimble out and escaped from the house…’

The Fugitive, Quinn Martin Productions, 1963-1967 From London Review of Books: Academics: beware of loving what you write about. Fandom can tempt intellectuals to take uncharacteristic risks with their primary sources. Even Stanley Fish, who as the author of Is There a Text In This Class? knows better than...

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Every Time We Ride

Every Time We Ride

From Poetry: Lupe Fiasco, who Bradley praises in Book of Rhymes, is represented in the Anthology by “Dumb It Down,” in which his bravura performance— I’m earless and I’m peer-less, that means I’m eyeless Which means I’m tearless, which means my iris Resides where my ears is —is met...

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Amelia Atlas on Mr. Talk

Amelia Atlas on Mr. Talk

Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Possessed), Fritz Eichenberg, 1959 by Amelia Atlas It is often said that one is either a Tolstoy person or a Dostoevsky person, in the same way that one is either a cat person or a dog person.  I used to want to be a Dostoevsky person,...

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“Better listen to him, he’s in pre-corporate”

“Better listen to him, he’s in pre-corporate”

The College Sweethearts, Saturday Evening Post Cover, Monte Crews by Rick Popp For nineteenth-century industrialists, college was seen as a great way to insure against a successful career in business. As ambitious young clerks learned the ins and outs of commerce, balancing accounts and scribbling correspondence, college students diddled...

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Deep Cleaning and Other Cosmic Issues

Deep Cleaning and Other Cosmic Issues

by Claire B. Potter Clutter Busting: Letting Go of What’s Holding You Back, by Brooks Palmer, California: New World Library, 232 pp. One of the reasons that self-help books are so successful is that they introduce complex thinking to people who aren’t normally exposed to it, or who are...

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Information Flood

Information Flood

Moore’s Law original graph From The New York Review of Books: According to Gleick, the impact of information on human affairs came in three installments: first the history, the thousands of years during which people created and exchanged information without the concept of measuring it; second the theory, first...

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En Liang Khong: Full Bloom

The cross-dressing Qiu Jin was emblematic of a revolutionary feminist current at the end of the Qing era, writing urgently on women’s emancipation: “While...

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Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei
Very Much Like a Whale by Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei

They had obviously taken the pictures of the whale, and the group of people carrying it, out of curiosity. But still the images failed...

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Oscillation

We recognise oscillation to be the natural order of the world.

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Menachem Feuer: Body

While Sarah Silverman jokingly tells us that her Jewish identity has more to do with her body than with the “responsibilities and limitations” that...

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Jeremy Fernando: Pink

An offering that might well remain in its being offered.

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Rosie Clarke Chats to Amelia Gray

I get the impulse to look to the canon, but I think we should try and challenge and squash the canon, too.

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Mario Carpo: Voice, Words, Memory

It all started with cellphones, a long time ago. No student, and few teachers, would make voice calls from class, but in the early...

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Remembrance of Translations Past

Although Charles Kenneth Scott Moncrieff’s translation of À la recherche du temps perdu is considered by many journalists and writers to be the best...

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Colin Dickey: Time’s Resistless Stream

By now, we are all of us more or less apocalyptic. Our calendar is itself based on the apocalyptic return of Jesus Christ, counting...

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Mark Mordue: Curate. Content. Click.

Not that ‘the critic’ has ever been a greatly appreciated or understood figure. Some fat toad with a feather in his hat who thinks...

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Russell Bennetts
Street Fighter: Berfrois Interviews Tariq Ali

The extreme centre is a form of government that arose out of neoliberal economics and exists today in virtually the whole of Europe, North...

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John Crutchfield: Go West

Perhaps this is what finally draws me back to the Western. It is a fundamentally serious genre. It deals with serious questions, and it...

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Joel Gn on Henri Lefebvre

How may we speak of that which goes off the record in an age of digital colonisation?

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Volker M. Welter on Michael Graves

The designer Michael Graves, who passed away at the age of 80 on March 12th, was widely considered to be one of the founding...

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