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Buzzwords » Top Reads of 2016: Richard Marshall (published 23/12/2016)

12 of what I’ve read this year: The Genesis of Neo-Kantianism, 1796-1880. Frederick Beiser. Beiser is an essential read and this is a great and readable book about an important sub-field of continental philosophy. It includes, for the Beckett fans amongst us, a chapter on Windelband, one of whose books Beckett read and from which […]

Interviews » Restless Hauntings: Richard Marshall Interviews Marina Warner (published 06/04/2009)

mw2By the time photography got into its stride it was accepted pretty much as a documentary index of reality. This was why it became very popular in spirit circles because it proved that spirits existed. Well now of course we know so much more about this very peculiar state of being which has been called ‘image flesh’ – a term of Maurice Merleau-Ponty that I like very much. It’s an expression I like because it implies flesh that is not flesh. He applied it to other forms of iconography, which are also image flesh. They might be more material than a photograph – a sculpture, a painting – but they share the relationship to the mind’s eye that photography does.

Richard Marshall talks Catholicism, zombies and Beckton Alps with Marina Warner.

Poetry » Poem Brut #95 – Lung Hysterics (published 29/05/2020)

The three prints are from a series I’m doing during the lockdown in London. They’re done on rough cardboard I take from bins and wherever they can be scavenged. Some are big and some are not. I pile them up in a room. They’re nearly up at the ceiling now. It’s making the room very dark. Many of them I can’t see all at once because they’re too large to display outside of a galery. Prints are run off from pictures I take on my phone. The paintings are just inchoate daubs. I don’t have the words or anything. But all this dying creeps into your dreams with a blank sad black and white feeling I guess.

In the 95th of the Poem Brut series, new poetry by Richard Marshall.

Essays » Tommy Udo R.I.P. (published 14/10/2019)

He was smart and political and very funny — and versatile, writing for the FT as well as music journals. He was also a nice guy: he had a conscience and embodied the opposite of the laddish yob ethos that was prevalent back then in some chippy hip circles. I wrote a piece about his book at the time and ended by summarising it thus: “Udo is stomping around in the language used by his contemporaries. He is writing with the fast-paced humour of the social critic buckled to the stand-up comic. His book is a meaty fart in the presence of anti-democratic forces symbolised by the British monarch and the Pope. And yet it is also delicate like a child’s drawing is delicate because it writes out in its bold, unrefined lines the mute sanctity of the oppressed and the uncultured, their voices and desires in a kind of Molly Bloomian ‘Yes’.”

Richard Marshall and Andrew Stevens pay tribute to Tommy Udo.

Buzzwords » ASTRAL LOOP: White Owl Call for Submissions (published 05/02/2019)

Women who turn the dusty philosophical volumes into verses, knowledge into magic, hermeneutic prose into sharp as a thorn poetica. Neptunian sirens, Pallas Athenas, those unruly intellects of the Aquarian Moon who master the thoughts systems pouring their wisdom into the collective… We are calling upon you to write and submit your philosophy-inspired poetry to be published in a collection henceforth known to all worlds as “White Owl”.

Buzzwords » Jonas Mekas (1922 – 2019) (published 29/01/2019)

In 2005 3:AM interviewed the godfather of American avant-garde filmmaking: “When I came to the United States I had to go to Chicago. That was my destination. But then we came by boat with my brother and we landed in New York. And right there, on pier 21 or whatever, we looked at Manhattan and we […]

Essays » When Negativity Don’t Pull You Through: Asides 3 (published 25/01/2019)

So the ascetic blames herself for her pain; the resulting self-loathing acts as a narcotic to relieve the pain. In this way the ascetic resists suicide. But the cost is to exacerbate suffering. This is why Nietzsche reviles the ascetic religious narcotic. ‘[I]t makes the sick sicker.’ Art is a different narcotic that achieves the same end but without the accompanying side effects. Art restores the affective attachment to life. Art’s role is to prevent suicide for those immune to asceticism.

Richard Marshall‘s final aside about anti-pessimism.

Essays » When Negativity Don’t Pull You Through: Asides 2 (published 14/12/2018)

Schopenhauer’s pessimism stands as a challenge to attempts to justify the value of life. As indicated above, the pessimist case was articulated by Schopenhauer in the nineteenth century and it was for a couple of decades as controversial an issue as Darwinism. A few quotes give the detonating flavour of his thesis:
‘We will not have to seek hell below the earth because we already are living it here and now.’ ‘The world is hell, and we humans are its tormented souls and its devils.’ ‘The essential meaning of the world famous monologue in Hamlet is this: that our life is so miserable that complete non-existence would be preferable to it.’   ‘The purpose of our existence is indeed to declare nothing more than the knowledge that it is better we never existed.’

Richard Marshall on Schopenhauer’s Pessimism and the Controversy that Followed.

Essays » When Negativity Don’t Pull You Through: Asides on The Pessimismus Controversy 1 (published 05/12/2018)

In Bostridge’s obsession we’re drawn to a frozen non-identity creeping about, a Byronic lover going beyond whatever is now absent, beyond anything existing, finding the weight, beauty and indissoluble actuality of negation. Dylan’s ‘Clothesline Saga’ from the official Basemeant Tapes works the same inconsequential ramble, freighted with the refusal of deep memories and the certainty that nothing can happen. When nothing happens we remember the date and the name of the bridge from where its mystery is thrown off. We remember the weather which is just another sinister shaggy dog story. Another nothing.

Richard Marshall`s aside on negation’s creative hand.

Buzzwords » Oxford Think Festival: 10th – 18th November 2018 (published 07/11/2018)

Oxford Think Festival Celebrating the quest for knowledge and stimulating debate. BY KIM BEHRENS OCTOBER 15TH 2018 Oxford University Press is delighted to once again partner with Blackwell’s Oxford to host a weekend of talks and discussions. After three successful years as the Oxford Philosophy Festival, the event returns this year as the Oxford Think Festival. Celebrating the quest […]