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Buzzwords » The Missing Links (published 18/05/2014)

The Invisible Book. * On Francesca Woodman. * Ben Lerner: “I came here tonight to open you up / To interference heard as music”. * Ben Lerner on Knausgaard. * Karl Ove Knausgaard on spring. * Out to where storytelling does not reach. * Art does not know a beyond. * The Absolution of Roberto [...]

Interviews » Edgeland: Marshland (published 20/03/2014)

Language and writing often tries to appropriate places and make them understandable. Take the Romantics as an example. Before the Romantics, hills, the Lake District and the countryside were just a wilderness, it was ugly, no one wanted to go there because there were bandits and wolves there. Why would you want to leave the triumph of the Enlightenment in the cities? But the Romantics came along and said, ‘That’s quite pretty’. So for a while language became about describing this exciting new place. Then it got into the Gothic and it became clichéd and all the rest of it, to the point where you couldn’t write about it anymore.

Kit Caless records Simon Spanton in conversation with Gareth E Rees.

Interviews » debunking the anxiety of influence (published 04/12/2013)

Red Tales was fundamentally about the image; entering ideas through the image. I wanted to push the story into a different direction. I had this idea of interweaving fragments and narrative; of poetry and narrative and the image coming to the forefront. I was fascinated by art and installations and even saw writing as a cheaper way of building these spaces. It was also very much about processing experiences.

Joanna Pocock in conversation with Susana Medina .

Buzzwords » The Missing Links (published 01/12/2013)

Saul Leiter, in memoriam (see picture). * Teju Cole on the late Saul Leiter. * A bibliography of boredom. * Borges as professor. * A library of the mind. *  Nicholas Roeg in conversation. * Cézanne: “The artist must avoid thinking like a writer”. So should the writer. * Tom McCarthy on the quasi-religious fethishism [...]

Criticism » Writing in Built Up Areas (published 11/11/2013)

In contrast to the pictures, the text is full of details, both visible and invisible to the eye; there are plenty of historical facts and everyday trivia unearthed by Rogers as he plans and goes on his expeditions that take him as far as Erith Pier in the east and Hounslow Heath in the west. Some of this information comes from books whose titles range from the esoteric The 21 Lessons of Merlin: A Study in Druid Magic & Lore to the practical County of London Plan, 1943; the rest is obtained through fieldwork. On one such occasion, eager to find out what wassailing is, Rogers joins a group of locals in Hackney for this fertility ritual, which involves singing and drinking to fruit trees, an unorthodox way to explore the Lea Valley on a cold January day.

Anna Aslanyan reviews John RogersThis Other London.

Buzzwords » Enemies (published 04/11/2013)

Penned in the Margins have just brought out a new book by SJ Fowler, 3:AM‘s extraordinary poetry editor. Iain Sinclair lui-même describes Enemies as an “overwhelming assault. The geography is unnerving, almost familiar, then stinging in its estrangement. Intensity crackles. Tension teases. At what point does collision become collaboration? When do the bandages come off?” [...]

Poetry » from Suicide Bridge: Book Four (published 07/10/2013)

Bowen understands text as
annotated suicide note. He looks
not unlike R.L. Stevenson. Consumption
written into the contract. Unnatural
fires of collapsed lungs.
Said to be an Aitu, a white ghost.
He haunts 16 Chepstow Place he haunts
the Suicide Club he raises all the demons
of this town.

By Iain Sinclair.

Buzzwords » The Missing Links (published 06/10/2013)

Derrida — the 2002 documentary. * The false memory archive. * The score for John Cage‘s 4’33″. * What is nothing? * All roads lead to Nowhere. * Books and labyrinths. * Lars Iyer interviewed: “the time for literary novels is over”. * Opium and croissants. * The case against the global novel. * Stewart [...]

Buzzwords » Suicide Bridge (published 05/10/2013)

BOWEN, HIS JOURNEY Bowen the Flea, under Gemini; under blanket, hides his face from the whips of the Sun. Everyday he thought of money, his conscience, between a closed self and this interpretation of the World. Everynight he lost his dream. And feared the stench. Bowen, disguised as icy Muscat, out of deep Arabia, into [...]

Nonfiction » Like a Grunge Keiller (published 10/09/2013)

Saint Etienne’s album So Tough was recorded the same year that Patrick Keiller shot his seminal film London – 1992. The album and the film forever linked in my mind via navigating those painful final years of Tory misrule from a Hackney squat, So Tough spinning on the turntable. The album provided a sweet pop soundtrack to the Fletcher-esque world of rainy caffs on a ‘Kentish Town, Tuesday’ in Black Wednesday era London. The songs were interrupted with snatches of dialogue from post-war kitchen sink dramas set in a punch-drunk pre-swinging city. The coming together of a Saint Etienne soundtrack with Paul Kelly and Kieran Evans’ Keiller-inspired essay film was the perfect marriage, more of personal topography of London entered via a dawn train from Croydon than the ‘state of the city’ film essay that Keiller achieved. The film and music in Finisterre construct a palimpsest of the capital in 2003 much as Keiller’s film captured ’92.

John Rogers on the influences behind his new book This Other London – Adventures in the Overlooked City.