Berfrois

July 2017

  • Ed Simon: Poetry Without Poets

    July 2017 Highlights

    Ed Simon: Poetry Without Poets

    Despite its aesthetic proficiencies or deficiencies, A.I.-Wordsworth’s poem is not necessarily without meaning, even if it’s a message without a messenger.

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Morning on the Wissahiccon

Morning on the Wissahiccon

The natural scenery of America has often been contrasted, in its general features as well as in detail, with the landscape of the Old World

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Where There’s Trump, There’s Fired

Where There’s Trump, There’s Fired

After months of talk about what it would take to get Trump impeached, analysts are calling this the “smoking gun” that could actually bring his downfall.

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Colin Raff: Variations on a Brandenburg Salamander

Colin Raff: Variations on a Brandenburg Salamander

In the spring of 1793, the entomologist Johann Friedrich Wilhelm Herbst, as a means to supplement his lectures at the newly founded Berliner Tierarzneischule

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FREE UNIVERSITY TUITION

FREE UNIVERSITY TUITION

What was heartening about the general election was that it suggested a new symbolic status for policy of the sort that technocratic politics was unable to manufacture.

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Lack of redaction continued to be a flashpoint for WikiLeaks…

Lack of redaction continued to be a flashpoint for WikiLeaks…

Lack of redaction—or of any real effort to separate disclosures of public importance from those that might simply put private citizens at risk—continued to be a flashpoint for WikiLeaks...

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Economics has always operated more like a church than a science…

Economics has always operated more like a church than a science…

The progress of science is generally linear. As new research confirms or replaces existing theories, one generation builds upon the next. Economics, however...

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The work is not undignified, but how you treat domestic workers is

The work is not undignified, but how you treat domestic workers is

Paid domestic work is not recognised in my country, neither socially nor economically. This absence of recognition is experienced by thousands of women who do this type of work

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Justin E. H. Smith: The Stockholm Conspiracy

Justin E. H. Smith: The Stockholm Conspiracy

While Monsieur Descartes was living peacefully at the Court of Sweden, whither his virtue, his dedication to the truth, his great genius in the sciences

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‘May’s humiliation was delicious’

‘May’s humiliation was delicious’

May’s humiliation was delicious, and the Tories’ fear that Corbyn, branded ‘unelectable’ by Labour ‘moderates’ for the last two years, would become Prime Minister if (or when) their now-minority government collapsed was palpable.

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Why was virtually no one prosecuted for causing the 2008 financial crisis?

Why was virtually no one prosecuted for causing the 2008 financial crisis?

After decades in which Wall Street masters of the universe were lionized in the media and popular culture, star investment bankers — rich, usually white men in nice suits — just don’t match the popular image of criminals.

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Lital Khaikin: To Justify Land #2

Lital Khaikin: To Justify Land #2

Lebreton and Chaudière from Parliament Hill, 1889. Collections Canada, PA-008351. by Lital Khaikin 2 — A gathering place where the remarkable occurs For the price of temporary, contractual benefits for private companies, the Asinabka islands are being transformed into another capitalist “Mecca”, from the congregational and spiritual centre they...

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Jeremy Fernando: Echoes Of and From Jean Baudrillard

Jeremy Fernando: Echoes Of and From Jean Baudrillard

After all, he be the one who called for a disappearance even before he disappeared.

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Jeremy Woolsey on Buddhism and the Dead

Jeremy Woolsey on Buddhism and the Dead

When my grandpa died, we took his ashes to an IN-N-Out in Southern California and scattered them at the base of a palm tree when no one seemed to be watching.

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Keith Kopka on Christine de Pizan and Emily Dickinson

Keith Kopka on Christine de Pizan and Emily Dickinson

Christine de Pizan and Emily Dickinson are unlikely literary figures to link together. The two wrote hundreds of years apart, in different cultures, on entirely different continents.

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Who needs a perfect language?

Who needs a perfect language?

Poets, historians, scientists, philosophers – we all seek to capture the world in a net of language. Yet it is the nature of nets to capture some things while letting others slip away.

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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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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...

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