Precarity, Bulgarian Style: Grozeva & Valchanov’s “The Lesson” (“Urok”–2014)

It’s completely in keeping with her character that Nadezhde Daskalova (Margita Gosheva) responds to a wanton act of petty thievery in her middle-school English class with repugnance and moral outrage. She is […]

The Fragility of Celebrity: “The Muppets” (ABC, 2015-)

The Muppets, ABC’s recent attempt to bring Jim Henson’s beloved puppets back to prime time, has been greeted by a surprising amount of critical hostility. Atlantic Magazine asks whether “audiences really want […]

Unpacking my Kindle™

The packaging is unassuming—a low black box with a single beveled facet. But the promise encoded in the tablet inside is prodigious! Up to 1100 books stored and on demand in the […]

Numeracy and the Survival of Worlds

My post today includes the writing of two guests: Heather Davis and Etienne Turpin, whose long-awaited Art in the Anthropocene: Encounters Among Aesthetics, Politics, Environments and Epistemologies went live today. Scroll down for […]

Ecologies of Waste

Perhaps the only thing more surprising than the existence of an artist in residence program at the San Francisco dump is the fact that this program has existed for decades and will […]

The Ferguson/Ayotzinapa Dictionary (Encyclopedia of Oppression)

NOTE I started writing the attached FERGUSON AYOTZINAPA DICTIONARY while on de facto paternity leave, in lieu of being able to work on larger projects, often writing with my right hand while holding […]

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

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