Information Cycles & Erisology

Roberto Bolano I detecti e slevaggiJohn Nerst of Everything Studies, whose essays include "Partial Derivatives and Partial Narratives,""What is Erisology?" and a statistical analysis of Black Mirror, has contributed to this essay in Section II. His contribution here is especially authoritative, as the governing theme of Everything Studies is the self-coined "erisology" — the study of disagreement.*    … Continue reading Information Cycles & Erisology

Post-Ritual Space: Berghain

“To pilgrims and many expats, it is a temple of techno, a consecrated space, a source of enchantment and wonder.” Nick Paumgarten, “Berlin Nights” I. Introduction 70 Am Wriezener Bahnhof, Berlin today hosts one of the most famous and influential electronic music venues in the world, notorious for its fetish scenes and its place as… Continue reading Post-Ritual Space: Berghain

Ulysses, Wilde, and a Theory of Literary Compression

“He looked at the cattle, blurred in silver heat. Silvered powdered olive trees. Quiet long days: pruning ripening. Olives are packed in jars, eh? I have a few left from Andrews… A cloud began to cover the sun wholly slowly wholly. Grey. Far. No, not like that. A barren land, bare waste. Vulcanic lake, the dead… Continue reading Ulysses, Wilde, and a Theory of Literary Compression

Predicting Joyce’s “Calypso”

Mr. Leopold Bloom ate with relish the inner organs of beasts and fowls. So begins the fourth chapter of Ulysses. “Calypso” is one of the more straightforward episodes of the novel, but here we'll look at the way the opening line maintains its own ambiguity throughout the chapter's opening pages. The suspended ambiguity is initiated in the… Continue reading Predicting Joyce’s “Calypso”

Text, Telos, and Ritual

I've been set free and I've been bound To the memories of yesterday's clouds I've been set free and I've been bound And now I'm set free I'm set free to find a new illusion — "I'm Set Free," The Velvet Underground “As time goes on... the universe becomes more and more what experience has revealed,… Continue reading Text, Telos, and Ritual

Generic Fit

“This makes the pop song an indispensable mirror: The way in which a listener imposes himself upon the text, or transforms the text from generic to specific, shows that listener something about himself. He learns his yearnings, his sadnesses, his loves; he recognizes an emotional life which is otherwise elusive, and solidifies in time an emotional state… Continue reading Generic Fit

Every Little Star

  I. I filled in a long-standing gap in my cultural knowledge recently and watched Lynch's 2001 noir masterpiece Mulholland Drive. That's the sensation, right? Where listening to records or watching films in an era of unprecedented access begins to feel a bit like doing homework. Except Mulholland Drive is, itself, an almost unprecedently interesting film, one capable of… Continue reading Every Little Star

A D Jameson & the Avant-Garde

I. I’ve been writing exclusively in long-form the past twelve months and become exhausted. Simultaneously, my writing has become more self-conscious, self-reflexive, and unwieldy, constant over-qualifications and anxious tangentials interrupting its focus. The list format used here, inspired partly by HTMLGiant’s trademark bullet-point style, is both a way to relieve this long-form burnout and to… Continue reading A D Jameson & the Avant-Garde

Genre, Values Hierarchies, & Intentionality in Pop

I. Does intentionality matter? Critical consequentialism put to the ultimate test: David Cooper Moore's "The Scary, Misunderstood Power of a 'Teen Mom' Star's Album"  discusses Farrah Abraham's infamous pop record My Teenage Dream Ended: It's tempting to consider My Teenage Dream Ended alongside other reality TV star vanity albums, like Paris Hilton's excellent (and unfairly… Continue reading Genre, Values Hierarchies, & Intentionality in Pop