Our awareness of death, of our finite existence as mortal beings, significantly shapes our social organization and how we ensure the (re)production of life itself. … More Freedom, fatal convictions, and the face mask.
BY GERDA ROELVINK Over the past six months in Australia we have experienced a long and extreme drought, devastating widespread bush fires, and now the Covid-19 pandemic. These crises have brought to the fore already simmering questions about how we are to survive, let alone thrive, with others on this planet. Achille Mbembe’s (2020) reflection … More The Power of a Pause
BY JAMES TYNER On May 12, 2020, during a Senate Health Committee hearing, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) questioned Dr. Anthony Fauci about the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and efforts to ‘reopen’ the U.S. economy. Paul’s frontal attack on Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, was part of a concerted effort among … More False profits and finding meaning in life.
The Modern Language Association has announced that Jonathan Eburne’s Outsider Theory: Intellectual Histories of Unorthodox Ideas has won the James Russell Lowell Prize. One of the most prestigious scholarly awards in the world since its founding in 1969, the Lowell Prize honors an outstanding work in literary or linguistic study written by a member of the … More Thinking outside the orthodox box: An interview with Jonathan Eburne, winner of the MLA’s James Russell Lowell Prize
Ian Shaw, The University of Glasgow Marv Waterstone, The University of Arizona Eight men own the same wealth as half the world, and one in 10 people survive on less than $2 a day. We live in an era of staggering levels of global inequality. But even a term like inequality scarcely captures our conjuncture. … More #UPWeek: Citizenship in a Time of Wageless Life
BY BJØRN EKEBERG “Who am I? A vortex. A dispersal that comes undone.” —Michel Serres, The Birth of Physics An extraordinary philosopher of science has passed away. Michel Serres was a Henri Bergson for the fractal age. He combined a precise grasp of the sciences with a philosophical appreciation of its lack of understanding of … More Turbulent Thoughts of a Peaceful Mind
BY MARIA SACHIKO CECIRE The tendency to set up—and then dash—the expectations of fantasy has always been crucial to HBO’s Game of Thrones and its source novels by George R. R. Martin. (I refer to them collectively below as GoT.) From the beheading of Ned Stark to the slaughter at the Red Wedding, much of … More Growing Up in Westeros: Breaking the Wheel of Fantasy Expectations
BY DAVID FARRIER Life itself is a form of poiesis, a perpetual world-making. But if eco-criticism also sees the poem as an exercise in world-making, how are we to read it in an age of extinction? Perhaps more than any other environmental crisis, extinction pitches us into deep time: into awareness of the richness of … More Poetry and Extinction in the Anthropocene
BY NICHOLAS TAMPIO Parents have dreams for their children. Sometimes, the dreams are specific; we want our children to play an instrument, enroll at our alma mater, or become engineers. Mostly, however, we want our children to do what will make them happy. If they want to try out for the school play, enroll in … More Parents versus Planners
By Miriam J. Abelson What does it mean to be a man in America? This question was at the forefront of the minds of many of the 66 trans men I interviewed while doing research for my book, Men in Place. These men lived in a wide variety of cities and rural areas across the … More American Masculinity in a New Era