:: Interviews

Paved with good intentions: John Grindrod published 19/06/2017

The green belts have only lasted as long as they have because of the disproportionate amount of Tory voters in them, meaning that the very MPs who would ordinarily have voted to get rid of these strict controls are forced by their local voters instead to protect them. And so the roots of the green belts as part of this post-war planning movement are lost in arguments to defend them, because it doesn’t suit the narrative of small state anti-planning Tories.

Andrew Stevens speaks to the Outskirts and Concretopia author.

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Modern Metaphysics – the Analytic/Continental Mix published 17/06/2017

I believe that there are deep connections between Heidegger’s metaphysics and the concerns of analytic metaphysicians. One of the things that I try to do in my book is to show that Heidegger’s metaphysics involved him in a kind of battle with language that was reminiscent of Wittgenstein’s early work. But that is just one example of very many. And it illustrates the point we touched on earlier: how profitable it can be to set non-analytic traditions alongside the analytic tradition.

Continuing the End Times series, Richard Marshall interviews A.W. Moore.

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Al Paldrok Non Grata published 11/06/2017

One can direct a performance totally separate from one’s body, using only one’s brain. To create a non-carnal space, a virtual performance or global catastrophe where performative activities start functioning on their own, disconnected from body. As brain is still a material part of one’s body, a thought originating from there is already a compromise between an idea and materialized reality.

Questioning everything is our main philosophy and it is also the difference between art and entertainment. Of course, I have grown up in one authoritarian regime and also seen its fall. In these systems your reality is twisted. Everybody knows that there is real life, which they live with their friends and families and then there is another one, the official artificial reality, in which you take part outside of the home. This experience has probably given me this attitude, to always be sceptical about surface issues.

Continuing the States of Anxiety series, Jana Astanov interviews Anonymous Boh.

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The Hacker published 10/06/2017

As Debord said, theories are made to die in the war of time. They are of their era. There’s no shortage of cranky pro-situs who claim ownership of the Situationists, like petit-bourgeois shop-keepers. But I think it’s better to treat it as material to refunction rather than repeat. It’s not for imitating, it’s for treating as raw material. That’s why the hardcovers of my books on the Situs come with comic strips that I made with Kevin Pyle, as a bit of a hint about how to repurpose the material now.

Richard Marshall interviews McKenzie Wark.

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Arcadian Wisdom published

I don’t think, and I don’t think that Plato thinks, that the questions human beings ask as they struggle to figure out what is just or beautiful or good—as they struggle to forge for themselves good lives—are susceptible to technical resolution. Human life cannot be mastered by an expert. It can surely be enhanced by thought, but it cannot be successfully engineered. In us there are too many powerful forces and desires, too much variability, contingency and sheer madness.

Continuing the End Times series, Richard Marshall interviews David Roochnik.

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A New England: Daniel Rachel published 05/06/2017

Jerry was very clear that he wanted a movement which would offer youth an alternative to the National Front. As Cathyl from Madness argues, you can’t lance a boil from a 100 yards away. The power for change was in the songs and the joy of a thousand other rude boys and girls skanking to the irresistible rhythms of ska and reggae. The NF were crushed and humiliated in the 1979 General Election. But Margaret Thatcher had as much claim to that outcome, as music and the cultural opposition of Rock Against Racism and the Anti-Nazi League.

Andrew Stevens talks to Daniel Rachel about the music and politics of Rock Against Racism, 2 Tone and Red Wedge.

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Jump On The Bed Happy published 04/06/2017

Tableau Vivant inspired me when I saw Carolee Schneemann’s “Interior Scroll” and the audiences adverse reaction to it, while they had none to Chris Burden sitting in his own excrement for days, or shooting himself in arm, or nailing himself to a car like Jesus and backing it out of driveway. No, the audience was more horrified when a woman pulled a harmless scroll out of her vagina and read from it.

Continuing the States of Anxiety series, Jana Astanov interviews Gabriel Don.

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The Pluralist published 03/06/2017

Different moralities must share some general features if they are to perform their functions of coordinating beings having particular kinds of motivations. Morality is a cultural construction in something like the way bridges are. There would be no bridges unless human beings used them to move across bodies of waters or depressions in the earth, but a good bridge cannot be designed according to whim, but rather according to what would adequately fulfill their function and the nature of the materials that are available for their construction.

Continuing the End Times series, Richard Marshall interviews David Wong.

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The Tit Bars and After published 02/06/2017

After arriving in LA, I saw a chance to make my own money, and that seemed better for me than the tenure-track line. I bought apartment buildings that give me some rental income, and that allows me to decide when to teach, and for whom. I’d be in a very different position now as a writer if I didn’t have that income. I always felt strongly about the singularity of my work, and knew it wouldn’t be easily fundable. Which means you have to either have family money, or marriage money, or make your own. It takes a long time for me to write a book — as much as five years. I write catalogue essays and journalism for extra income in between, and give lectures and readings, but if I were completely dependent on that income, my work would be completely different. I couldn’t do the work I do now without an independent income. This is awkward, maybe, to disclose, but I think it’s important — especially in the US people are led to believe that there’s something wrong with their work if it doesn’t result in financial security. When in fact, many of the most prominent artists and writers have relied upon outside support for at least the first part of their careers.

Alison J Carr interviews Chris Kraus.

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My Little Enlightenment: The Plays and Textual Performances of Sophie Seita published 29/05/2017

Gloriously imagined and re-imagined, Sophie Seita’s textual–performance–play hybrids tickle whimsy from grandeur, opulence from bathos and a kind of melodrama from tragedy. My Little Enlightenment Plays is a project that swings between ecstatic irreverence and straight-faced reverence, the seriousness of language and its subject, language as subject, and the serious commitment to abandoning such seriousness in play and artifice. These are not indulged as postmodern tropes but instead staged as emotive and social sensations, encountered through Seita’s particular archaeology of literary history. Cartwheeling between astronomy, utopia, poetry, power, gender, the queer and the courtly, these pieces generate a disorientating experience preoccupied by its own fertile confusion. Or, in the project’s own words: they are conjured from ‘dangerous pleasings of the empire of the Vacuous Obscurity’ to present ‘the Consort of the Mighty and the Mushy’.

Sophie Seita interviewed by David Spittle.

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