Berfrois

Thumbs Up

Thumbs Up

Tacitus reports, that amongst certain barbarian kings their manner was, when they would make a firm obligation, to join their right hands close to one another, and intertwist their thumbs.

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SEEKING Mind and Biology by Stephen T. Asma

SEEKING Mind and Biology by Stephen T. Asma

In his 1790 Critique of Judgment, Kant famously predicted that there would never be a “Newton for a blade of grass.” Biology, he thought, would never be unified and reduced down to a handful of mechanical laws, as in the case of physics. This, he argued, is because we...

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The Myth of Stepping Out

The Myth of Stepping Out

by Nadia Sels Mythology and Psychoanalysis: Uncanny Doubles “It may perhaps seem to you as though our theories are a kind of mythology and, in the present case, not even an agreeable one. But does not every science come in the end to a kind of mythology?” These words,...

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Anthropotek

Anthropotek

Photograph by Rool Paap From Radical Philosophy: With the advent of the global financial crisis in 2008, we would perhaps have imagined that the entire panoply of boosterish rhetoric that subtended it – from aspirational market-oriented self-help guides to outdated theories of rational economic agents – would have vanished...

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Once cosmopolitanism becomes a force for social change, that’s when the difficulties begin…

Once cosmopolitanism becomes a force for social change, that’s when the difficulties begin…

by Justin E. H. Smith Cosmopolitanism is most closely associated with certain tendencies in Hellenistic philosophy. Diogenes the Cynic answered the question, “Where are you from?” by saying simply, “I am a kosmou polites– a citizen of the world” (DL 6.63). Many scholars have noted the broad resemblances between this Cynic...

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Masha Tupitsyn’s Summer

Masha Tupitsyn’s Summer

As we walk back home, up that same country road we will lie down on minutes later, he says that my bare legs light the road because the moon isn’t full yet. Looking back, I think I interrupted him before he had the chance to fully flirt with me...

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The Gaze Drifts

The Gaze Drifts

by R. H. Jackson This piece, included in the drift special issue of continent., was created as one step in a thread of inquiry. While each of the contributions to drift stand on their own, the project was an attempt to follow a line of theoretical inquiry as it...

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It Wasn’t Malala; It Wasn’t Even Putin by Jeremy Fernando

It Wasn’t Malala; It Wasn’t Even Putin by Jeremy Fernando

On 2 October, 2013, we were confronted with a puzzling piece of news: Vladimir Putin had allegedly been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. After checking that the news did not come via Punch — and that we were not in April — true befuddlement sank in: apparently no...

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Naomi-Ruth-Boaz

Naomi-Ruth-Boaz

Naomi entreating Ruth and Orpah to return to the land of Moab, William Blake, 1795 by Emily McAvan In this paper I read the Book of Ruth from the Hebrew Bible in relation to modern Jewish feminist and queer theories. I trace the movement in the narrative between mourning...

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‘Commons’

‘Commons’

Red, Blue, John Hoyland, 1969 From Radical Philosophy: When we speak of the globalization of markets we also speak of a limitation imposed on the sovereignty of nation-states. In Western Europe, the essential error of national left-wing movements and parties has been their failure to understand...

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Model Product

Model Product

Although the myth of Pygmalion is well known, let us recall the principal elements of Ovid's account: Pygmalion, who had never fallen in love with a woman, succeeded in sculpting "in snow-white ivory" the statue of a woman more beautiful than nature had ever made. Amazed by the almost...

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SUPERabundance

SUPERabundance

, From Moonstrips Empire News, Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, 1967 by Siegfried Zielinski Introduction The first decade of the twenty-first century was basically nothing more than an extension of what had gone before. When I began writing this book in the autumn of 2010, I had the...

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On Jean Bethke Elshtain

On Jean Bethke Elshtain

Jean Bethke Elshtain by Katherine B. Jones Political philosopher Jean Bethke Elshtain died on August 11, 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee at the age of 72. A controversial public intellectual and prolific scholar whose works covered the gamut from defending the role of religion in politics to providing justifications for...

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A Bankrupt Secularism?

A Bankrupt Secularism?

From Of the Nature of Things, by Thomas Creech, T. Lucretius Carus, 1682–3 Engraving by Michael Burghers. by Ian Pollock The secular movement is a cause that, by and large, I support. I think a more secular society would be a better one. But I think some of the...

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El Toboso

El Toboso

From Don Quixote, by Miguel de Cervantes, 1863. Illustration by Gustave Doré by Timothy Hampton In addition to his signal achievements as a knight errant, Don Quixote de la Mancha produced a small but noteworthy body of poetry. Samples of this poetry appear at different places in the history...

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In the Caspian Sea there is an eyeless fish that marks the only correct time of the universe…

In the Caspian Sea there is an eyeless fish that marks the only correct time of the universe…

Jahangir’s Dream, Abu’l Hasan, 1622 by Justin E. H. Smith The Khazars are so resourceful that they have oysters breeding on trees. They take a tree by the sea, bend its branches into the water, and hold them down with a rock; within two years the branches become so...

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The reader becomes addicted…

The reader becomes addicted…

In the FAMA documentary, “The Siege of Sarajevo,” the owner of a used bookstore in Sarajevo says that philosophy books were the most popular during the war. Customers frequented bought books by Aristotle, Hegel, and Kant. Deep concentration is required to read these works. The reader takes the role...

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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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Sebastian Normandin on Steven Pinker

“The great thinkers of the Age of Reason and the Enlightenment were scientists.” So begins Steven Pinker’s recent controversial essay on scientism and its...

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Oliver Farry on Michel Houellebecq

The peculiar circumstances surrounding the publication of Michel Houellebecq’s latest novel constitute a case study in how even the biggest literary news stories are,...

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McKenzie Wark
Information in Chains

“Information wants to be free, but is everywhere in chains.” The development of the forces of production took a qualitatively different turn when information...

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Bobbi Lurie
Bobbi Lurie: Organic Fortune

isis - ebola - obama hit by halal truck (where is duchamp?)

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Bharat Azad
Bharat Azad Meets Adair Turner

In a quiet office tucked away in Mayfair – over a long table so white I am hesitant to even place my fingers on...

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Andre Gerard: Light Here, Shadow There

The deeper one looks in To the Lighthouse the more one sees. The more one listens the more one hears. Homer, Shakespeare, Conrad and...

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