Berfrois

April 2015

Information Over Muskets

Information Over Muskets

Kim Jong-un, Vasily Galaktionov, 2013 by Sergei Guriev and Daniel Treisman The changing dictatorships Dictatorships are not what they used to be. The totalitarian tyrants of the past – such as Hitler, Stalin, Mao, or Pol Pot – employed terror, indoctrination, and isolation to monopolise power. Although less ideological, many 20th-century...

Read More

‘Academic philosophy is definitely too narcissistic today’

‘Academic philosophy is definitely too narcissistic today’

The history of philosophy looks a bit like a sine wave (or a roller coaster, if you prefer). It goes up and then down, up again, and then down.

Read More

Popomo

Popomo

Let’s call this phase after postmodernism post-postmodernism – “popomo” for short.

Read More

Elias Tezapsidis on Robin Givhan

Elias Tezapsidis on Robin Givhan

by Elias Tezapsidis The Battle of Versailles: The Night American Fashion Stumbled into the Spotlight and Made History, by Robin Givhan, Flatiron Books, 320 pp. Fashion critic Robin Givhan’s new book (out this week from Flatiron Books) takes us to The Battle of Versailles Fashion Show, a fundraising event...

Read More

Horses Going Mad by Imprisonment Within the Royal Garden Walls

Horses Going Mad by Imprisonment Within the Royal Garden Walls

Some minutes into the UK premiere of Wim Wenders and Juliano Riberdo Salgado's The Salt of the Earth at the benefit opening of the 2015 Human Rights Watch Film Festival in London, someone whispers in my ear: “So what does this have to do with human rights?”

Read More

‘What is the use’

‘What is the use’

Not everything Gertrude Stein wrote is worth calling poetry. Stein says so herself in “Poetry and Grammar,” because “for me the problem of poetry was and it began with Tender Buttons to constantly realize the thing anything so that I could recreate that thing.”

Read More

Oscillation

Oscillation

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

Read More

This All

This All

You still. Have time. Things can happen in one day.

Read More

Hip-hop is an ecosystem…

Hip-hop is an ecosystem…

I was born in 1989 at the end of hip-hop’s infancy. By the time I dropped into being, hip-hop had a Grammy and platinum records.

Read More

A Logic of War

A Logic of War

In postmodernity, localities, cities, nations, and all types of spaces and communities began to develop distinctive qualities to attract the flows of global capital. Postmodern culture was thus fully subsumed in the production and marketing of difference.

Read More

JIT

JIT

Jeffrey T. Nealon’s Post-Postmodernism or, The Cultural Logic of Just-in-Time Capitalism restages and reactivates Fredric Jameson’s call, over twenty years prior, for a new situation and new mode of criticism adequate to late capitalism.

Read More

Take my beers to the end of the pier…

Take my beers to the end of the pier…

One of the compensations of being an insomniac in a snowbound house full of books is that I can always find something to read and distract myself from whatever mood I’m in.

Read More

Menachem Feuer: Body

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 come with “accepting being identified with being Jewish.”

Read More

Jeremy Fernando: Pink

Jeremy Fernando: Pink

An offering that might well remain in its being offered.

Read More

Queen Mob’s Teaparty: Thursday 9th April

Queen Mob’s Teaparty: Thursday 9th April

D’Venue: Dulono’s Pizza in Minneapolis

Read More

Rosie Clarke Chats to Amelia Gray

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.

Read More
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...

Read More
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...

Read More
Jay Aquinas Thompson Interviews Eric Weisbard

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

Read More
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...

Read More
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.

Read More
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....

Read More
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....

Read More
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...

Read More
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...

Read More
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....

Read More
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...

Read More
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....

Read More
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...

Read More
Menachem Feuer on Sarah Silverman and Lena Dunham

Elle called Silverman’s image of her wearing a shirt with several naked Lena Dunhams a “beautiful tribute.” Dunham, the article tells us, “seemed to...

Read More