In his recent novel, Salman Rushdie shows how reinventing oneself is damned hard to pull off, even in New York.
Thank goodness art can be reassessed!
Rereading J.G. Ballard’s final novel about consumers who turn to absentminded fascism when shopping loses its appeal.
If a great artist dies without ever showing the world their work, does the world have the right to see it now?
Todd VanDerWerff, a cultural critic and journalist, says (somewhat unsurprisingly) that we need cultural critics and journalists, a group of writers that have been let go from numerous media outlets over the past few years as all media coverage is gradually sucked into the Trump Singularity.
Like many, I prefer to start my days with a jolt of news-induced panic, although I couldn’t tell you why.
The harrowing memoir of a lost artist from NY reveals how multi-talented David Wojnarowicz was and how bad the good old days were.
I can attest that this a truly fascinating subject and book because I’ve also written a book on something very closely related.
I’d be more optimistic about gentrification in my city if the boosters could fill in the details of their bright new future.
Ole Thorstensen is a master craftsman both in carpentry and prose.
Matthew Stewart’s piece on “the 9.9 percent” in the Atlantic is more interesting (and probably easier to remember) than jeremiads about the “one percent”.
How a gourmet donut shop became a battleground over gentrification, anarchism, white pride, and everything else.
Flophouses, Scientologists, mysterious strangers, Italian sex films, and more from the second-worst winter of my life.
One of those stories where every word is the right one in the right place…
On a recent book which argues that it’s time we stop thinking of the Enlightenment as the work of caffeinated European men in salons and look to the civil courts of the Spanish colonial world.
Hopefully the last (possibly the first) piece you’ll ever have to read about gentrification (in Hamilton, Ontario).
Holy fishing Christ! Notes about a recent horrifying/riveting book about a murderous punk rock gang in early 80s Los Angeles.
About a recent film adaptation of J.G. Ballard’s 1975 novel concerning a far-fetched dystopian future in which the rich and poor isolate themselves from one another by pervasive violence.
On the book “Eating Animals” by Jonathan Safran Foer and the act of eating animals.
Thoughts on writing, working, and professionalism.
As Gustave Flaubert realized in Egypt, the dream of social engineering will never come true as long as human beings are yearning and irresponsible creatures.
A scholarly look at how literature can help us to understand the hard work of being human.
Really, nobody is to blame for the unsustainable adjunct situation in academia. And so, nobody can fix it.
A new book from Oxford University Press takes a lively and engaging look at that bleakest of topics.
Two scholars do a service for intellectual history in arguing how a distinguished thinker could have been so misguided.
A book coming out next month turns the days leading up to Pearl Harbor into a nail-biter and exonerates the admiral who was made a scapegoat for the attacks.
Rufus writes perhaps too many words on gentrification after finding himself living in “the Brooklyn of Canada”.
Confessions of a public scribbler
How we write stories mirrors the strange and uncanny ways we make sense of our lives.
Is the literary class impoverishing literature?
Power, in the absence, of authority, can inspire some obedience, but no respect.
How does the unregulated “free market” determine the wages paid to prostitutes?
The memoir of an East L.A. barrio girl turned punk rock legend.
A recent film with unsimulated sex and simulated depth.
What university ephemera can tell us about how academia sees itself.
Thoughts on the work we do and how little it says about us.