Berfrois

January 2011

Augmented (hyper)Reality: An interview with Keiichi Matsuda

Augmented (hyper)Reality: An interview with Keiichi Matsuda

Augmented (hyper)Reality: Domestic Robocop, still, Keiichi Matsuda, 2009 by Greg J. Smith Keiichi Matsuda is a multidisciplinary designer based in London and Tokyo who garnered widespread attention last year for Augmented (hyper)Reality, a speculative video series that explored near-future media environments. His short films Domestic Robocop and Augmented City 3D...

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When Book Reviews Kill

When Book Reviews Kill

David Graham Philips From The New York Times: It’s easy to imagine how a novelist might use a real person as a basis for a fictional character. It’s equally easy to imagine how such a person could notice the similarities and perhaps become offended. After all, the fiction writer...

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The desirable difficulty of sleeve and paint

The desirable difficulty of sleeve and paint

The Jewish Bride, Rembrandt, c. 1667 by Emma Darwin Oh, how I do love a thoroughly counter-intuitive discovery! Apparently, the plainer and cleaner the typeface, the less a reader will learn and remember of the detail of the text. A typeface which slows the reader means they learn and...

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It seemed inevitable that the dollar would lose its exorbitant privilege. But the currency is here to stay, if only for want of an alternative…

It seemed inevitable that the dollar would lose its exorbitant privilege. But the currency is here to stay, if only for want of an alternative…

by Barry Eichengreen The dollar’s key role in international markets is once again in the spotlight. This column introduces a new book by Barry Eichengreen: Exorbitant Privilege: The Rise and Fall of the Dollar and the Future of the International Monetary System. As the author puts it, “If you...

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The Greater Humanities

The Greater Humanities

School of Athens, Raphael, 1510-1511        Posted by kind permission of James Clifford, this is the text of a talk he delivered at “The University We Are For,” a conference  organized by David Theo Goldberg and Wendy Brown at UC Berkeley (11/5/10). The Berkeley forum is webcast here and...

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Wanted: Bad Women

Wanted: Bad Women

Bonnie Parker, circa 1933 by  Kathleen Cairns Wanted Women: An American Obsession in the Reign of J. Edgar Hoover, by Mary Elizabeth Strunk, Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 304 pp. Female “outlaws” have been a staple of American popular culture at least since the 1830s, when New York Herald publisher...

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‘The Na’vi are terrorists who won’

‘The Na’vi are terrorists who won’

Brown Skin, Blue Masks | by Nadja Millner-Larsen, Wazhmah Osman, and Danyel Ferrari

Triple Canopy

Perhaps what we have here, in the wake of the failure of the Abu Ghraib images—and countless similar images from Bosnia, Rwanda, Darfur, and so on—is the nightmare...

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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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Jeremy Fernando: Not

A response — Bartleby’s response — foregrounding the fact that it is the “I” that “prefers not to”: not that ‘I cannot’ nor ‘I...

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Owen Vince on HARK

As a poet, you are your grandmother; you are browsing the obituaries with a red pen and an address book in your hand. The...

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Jay Aquinas Thompson Interviews Eric Weisbard

Eric Weisbard wrote twenty years ago, introducing the voluminous, era-summarizing, contrarian and contradictory Spin Alternative Record Guide.

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Collective Destruction by Keith Doubt

What, then, is sociocide? Sociocide resonates with the term demodernization formulated by A. V. Tishkov to account for the consequences of the war in...

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Heather Lang on Fiona Sampson and Sarah Morgan

Poet Fiona Sampson is a former career violinist, and, perhaps unsurprisingly, overt references to music appear in her work.

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Setsuko Adachi: Azalea Exuberance Strikes

In May, in the garden of the elevated house at the bottom of the hill, four shrubs of stunning azaleas come into full blossom....

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Joe Linker
Joe Linker on Li Po

Florence showed me what she called the most famous of Chinese poems. She had made her own translation from a Chinese language newspaper clipping....

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Teresa K. Miller and Gregory Giles Discuss Luc Moullet

To begin at the end: After nearly two hours exploring facets of exploitation in the globalized food system, Luc Moullet closes Genèse d’un repas/Origins...

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Adam Staley Groves: Iowa Nasty

Now it seems the state’s radical conservatives are degrading the historic, populist-provincial mentality of Iowa; they are revising the state’s legacy within the broader...

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Animal Spirits at the Nueva Burdalesa Bakery by Jessica Sequeira

A few years ago all I had was a certain ambition and an understanding, more or less, of how things work in this world....

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Sebastian Normandin
Meaning and Pseudoscience by Sebastian Normandin

The persistence and proliferation of pseudoscientific thinking in contemporary culture demands explanation. Clearly there are some pragmatic reasons for its expanded existence, and people...

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Janice Lee For the Ghost

The memories are like stutters. Sometimes I inhale for air, and exhale a shaking chain of memories. A choking hazard. I for the ghost....

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Edi Rama’s Bunker Mentality by Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei

As many former Eastern Block countries in the EU display a hardly dissimulated form of racism and religious hatred, Albania, always a little behind...

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