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Reading at the Roche Limit: A Review of “Fantasies of the Library”

In commemoration of National Library Week I want to share a remarkable new book, a book that gathers many libraries between its cerulean covers, a book whose bibliographic imaginary is not national but planetary. […]

Aleksei Balabanov, “The Castle” (1994): MacKay/Sussman Double-Feature

The Castle (Zamok, 1994) Cast Nikolai Stotsky – K., the surveyor Svetlana Pismichenko – Frieda (dubbed by Anzhelika Nevolina) Viktor Sukhorukov – Surveyor’s assistant Anvar Libabov – Surveyor’s assistant Igor Shibanov – […]

Life on Solaris

As a personal rule, I detest autobiography. Especially it’s debased, watered-down manifestation, the memoir, a form that proves that the personal is political, so long as that politics is bourgeois capitalism. And […]

Apr, 07 · Urbanities

Clean Image

 This prestigious (prestidigitous) mise en scène behind which memory disappears. – Francis Ponge, Le Savon. In the middle of West 24th street the gallery-going public, along with any casually glancing passerby, may be […]

Mar, 31 · Labor,Performance

How Not to Disappear in America: Notes on a Panel on Human Rights and Video Technology

  One could be excused for thinking that the panel discussion convened this Thursday in San Francisco around the future of human rights and media technology would focus on tools for evading […]

The Televisionary Absolute: Thirteen Theses on “American Horror Story” (FX Network, 2011-)

The horror genre tends to the generic: whereas tragic fear depends on, and ultimately reaffirms, a developed sense of self (of status and social position, autonomy, humanity), horror is generic through and […]

On American Sniper: Some Preliminary Notes

  As everyone knows, Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper (2015) is, as of this writing (January 24, 2015: just over three years since the Iraq War officially ended, about two years since the shooting […]

Jan, 28 · Film & TV

The Cinema of Deliberation: Ceylan’s “Winter Sleep”

Like all great works of cinema, the current feature, “Winter Sleep,” by Nuri Bilge Ceylan (screenplay with Ebru Ceylan), is both an open sesame to a very local ecology, Cappadocio, that through […]

Jan, 18 · Film & TV

Space to Rent

Craig Epplin’s last post to Urbanities questions whether the relation of producer-consumer and planner-occupant has really been altered by the advent of “participatory” modes of technology. More specifically, new forms of cartography […]

Jan, 13 · Urbanities

Cartography and Participation

The pleasure of data, the seduction of statistics: Paul Kamàck first became interested in Mexico when, still a student, he visited the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. What caught his attention […]

Jan, 07 · Urbanities

“Undue Burden” and the Discursive Limits of Reproductive Rights

  The closing of reproductive health clinics in Texas has gained international attention as singularly representative of contemporary abortion debates in the United States. While much could be written about the broader […]

Nov, 12 · Sexualities

Living the Good Life after the End of the World: On Joanna Zylinska’s Minimal Ethics for the Anthropocene

  This October, at the House of the Cultures of the World (HKW) in Berlin, the Anthropocene Working Group of the International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) will commence a series of meetings […]

Oct, 24 · New Ecologies

Museum as Megamachine: On the 9/11 Memorial Museum, With a Nod to Lewis Mumford

The 9/11 Memorial Museum is a profoundly disorienting mash-up of recovery and loss, creation and destruction, holding on, letting go, righteous indignation, and if you’re not careful, some self-criticism, remembering, as well […]

Oct, 17 · Performance,Theory

The Architecture of Mourning

This September marks the thirteenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, and three years since the official opening of the 9/11 Memorial Museum, located in the footprint of the former World Trade towers. […]

Sep, 12 · Theory

Twelve Theses on Education’s Future in the Age of Neoliberalism and Terrorism

The following is an excerpt is taken from the book,  Neoliberalism, Education, Terrorism: Contemporary Dialogues,  co-authored by Jeffrey R. Di Leo, Henry A. Giroux, Kenneth J. Saltman and Sophia A. McClennen. It is offered […]

Sep, 08 · Education

Reworking the University

When Starbucks announced in June that the company would offer many of its employees a discounted online college education through Arizona State University, social theorists, business analysts, and education commentators quickly weighed […]

Aug, 24 · Education

Two Walks: Re-enacting Rivers and Exploding Farms

The art of walking is often a melancholy one. Its slowness breeds languid reveries, intense brooding, and earthbound ponderings that can tend toward a state of paralysis (think of Kirsten Dunst in Melancholia). […]

Aug, 22 · New Ecologies

Brenda Hillman’s Seasonal Works With Letters on Fire

I love this book so I want to explore the grounds of my pleasures. What is the volume’s power to modify our understanding and develop a distinctive sensibility, and why does it […]

Aug, 21 · Poetics

Literary maps: México, DF

I’m preparing for a research trip to Mexico City. As always when I travel, I’ve been looking at maps—maps of the metro, maps of neighborhoods, maps of the whole city and the […]

Antigone in Post-War Poland

“Ida” is an odd amalgam. Set in 1962, it brings together two female characters who could not be more incongruous as they negotiate a somber Polish landscape in their common effort to […]

Jul, 01 · Film & TV

Redefining Success and Failure: Open-Access Journals and Queer Theory

Both the process and the very idea of publishing one’s work in an open-access online scholarly journal are fraught with irony. The realities of the job market for recent graduates, as well […]

Jun, 03 · Sexualities

Pure Language 2.0: Walter Benjamin’s Theory of Language and Translation Technology

Walter Benjamin once proposed that the “history of every art form has critical periods in which the particular form strains after effects which can be easily achieved only with a changed technical […]

May, 19 · Literature

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