Berfrois

Mutiny!

Mutiny!

In her latest book, ‘Unspeakable Things’, journalist Laurie Penny dissects the structural violence ripping through the most intimate parts of all of our lives: suffocated by rigid gender roles, policed by the sexual counter-revolution, and corroded by austerity – and charts the dynamics between these controlling forces in our lives.

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A. Staley Groves on Ron Paul

A. Staley Groves on Ron Paul

Ron Paul speaking to supporters at a “victory rally” following the 2012 Iowa Republican Caucuses in Ankeny, Iowa. Photograph by Gage Skidmore by A. Staley Groves What the republican candidatura conceals in its paradoxical movement is the questionable duration of the American State. This question is concealed by the...

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Cold Wise Man

Cold Wise Man

George Kennan From The New Yorker: Kennan thought that Americans were shallow, materialistic, and self-centered—he had the attitude of a typical mid-century European—and the more he saw of them the less fond of them he grew. “You have despaired of yourself,” he wrote in his diary after a visit...

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“Influence”

“Influence”

Northern Distribution Network From Foreign Policy: When people read a news website, they don’t usually imagine that it is being run by a major producer of fighter jets and smart bombs. But when the Pentagon has its own vision of America’s foreign policy, and the funds to promote it,...

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Steve Yetiv: Triangulated

Steve Yetiv: Triangulated

Michele Solmi by Steve A. Yetiv On November 7, 1973, Richard Nixon called for major proposals to deal with the energy crisis caused by the 1973 Arab oil embargo and for a grand national undertaking which, “by the end of the decade” would allow the United States to “have...

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Demand/Duration

Demand/Duration

#occupywallstreet general assembly, Zuccotti Park, New York From Harper’s: The nightly meetings of the General Assembly at occupied Liberty Plaza (officially, Zuccotti Park) in New York have been treated by the media mainly as a quaint footnote to the mass arrests and alleged police brutality attendant to the occupation....

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Ronald Reagan’s ubiquitous Americana is constantly recycled by neophytes…

Ronald Reagan’s ubiquitous Americana is constantly recycled by neophytes…

by A. Staley Groves 1. St. Reagan and the Return of the Storyteller The 2004 Republican National Convention was a significant event concerning language and aesthetics in contemporary politics. The Reagan myth appeared as a stellar aura of sentimentality that churned a cultic swoon. Among the polity this spectacular...

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Ruth Kinna on Guy Aldred

Ruth Kinna on Guy Aldred

Guy Aldred, c.1912 by Ruth Kinna Guy Aldred is an obscure but important figure in the history of socialist thought. He sometimes crops up in histories of British socialism, syndicalist and labour organisation, but rarely in discussions of socialist theory. His uncompromising commitment to activism perhaps explains this neglect:...

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No WMD

No WMD

From Granta: Consider that during World War II there were fewer than one hundred civilian casualties on US soil. No fire-bombing of Dresden, no London Blitz, no Hiroshima. Throughout the most deadly century in human history, US civilians remained remarkably safe from foreign aggression. The trauma of 9/11 for...

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The cumulative dynamic is not so much egalitarian as extra-egalitarian…

The cumulative dynamic is not so much egalitarian as extra-egalitarian…

Second Soul, Episode 5, Season 1 of The Outer Limits, CBS, 1995 From New Left Review: Equality currently functions as a shared ideal in both political rhetoric and philosophy. No politician calls for ‘a more unequal society’, and within political theory philosophers of almost every persuasion advocate some form of...

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Poised for 2012?

Poised for 2012?

The Next Election: The Surprising Reality | by Andrew Hacker

The New York Review of Books

The 2010 election galvanized the GOP. The party won seven new places in the Senate, as many new governorships, and took the seats of 720 Democrats...

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Invisible Hand, Iron Fist

Invisible Hand, Iron Fist

A GEO Group prison by Loïc Wacquant The increasing penalization of poverty is a response to social insecurity; a result of public policy that weds the “invisible hand” of the market to the “iron fist” of the penal state. How and why has the prison returned to the institutional...

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Burke’s Wardrobe by William F. Byrne

Burke’s Wardrobe by William F. Byrne

by William F. Byrne Edmund Burke’s time has come. The idea that the eighteenth-century Irish-born British statesman and writer is especially relevant today, in an age that is often described as “postmodern,” may seem odd, or perhaps presumptuous. But it is largely because of the postmodern and late-modern qualities...

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When Drones Strike

When Drones Strike

From Columbia Journalism Review: In the spring of 2009, New York Times reporter David Rohde was being held captive by Taliban gunmen in a house in Waziristan, a mountainous region on the Pakistan side of the border with Afghanistan. Aerial drones soared overhead, filling him and his kidnappers with...

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Jerry Moore: Feverish Rivers

I learned that Gerardo Reichel-Dolmatoff had been a Nazi when I was in a Santa Marta supermarket. I had just stepped into the Exito...

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Lauren Berlant
Lauren Berlant flies

Most of the writing we do is actually a performance of stuckness. It is a record of where we got stuck on a question...

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Robyn Ferrell on Balthus

The pitfalls of identification, hero-worship, envy and malice can beset the most patient writer in the throes of five hundred-plus pages of attention to...

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Michael Munro on Spinoza

Immanence is not philosophy, nor philosophy immanence. But there is in the passage from one to the other a modification of sense that is...

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David Beer
David Beer: Broadcastwerk

Writing at sometime around 1930 or 1931, Walter Benjamin suggested that the voice on the radio is a like a visitor in the home,...

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Rose Barnsley: Young, Gifted and Žižekian

At nineteen, it is easy to think that all you're missing is the right movement. But there is something about the young left wing...

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Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei: Rama’s And

While local journalists were once again busy regurgitating worn-down, coma inducing positions about yet another spectral appearance of Enver Hoxha at the celebration of...

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Playing the Percentages: Berfrois Interviews Danny Dorling

The portrait of the 1% in your book is one of sociopathic, power-hungry narcissists with a striking lack of empathy. This may seem antagonistic,...

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Joseph Spece
Joseph Spece: When Gamers Attack

Like many ugly controversies, the beginnings of #gamergate are linked to the end of love — well, the end of a relationship, at least....

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Lauren Berlant performs by clicking

Today I introduced Facebook to someone older than me and had a long conversation about what the point of networking amongst “friends” is. The...

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Tinder Times by Bibi Deitz

I am in bed with a man. He has to go home. He is not staying the night. So he pulls out his iPhone...

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Jenny Diski keeps up

Some things are best met with silence. If I were to proceed with this month’s column in an honest way, it would be a...

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From Fashion by Tracy O’Neill

The man who brought us a disembodied protagonist alluringly voiced by Scarlett Johansson has now issued a drama — starring apparel. Recently, Opening Ceremony...

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Philippe Theophanidis on Jean-Luc Godard

At one point near the end of his unfinished novel Jean Santeuil, Marcel Proust describes a painting by Claude Monet from 1897, titled “Bras...

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