:: Buzzwords

19/09/18: HowTheLightGetsIn Festival Update

Helen Beebee is appearing at the festival this weekend. Read her new interview with 3:AM here.

2018 Festival Programme

Sat 22nd September
Sun 23rd September

We’ve already highlighted some of the philosophers at the event who we’ve interviewed at 3:AM here.

Image result for helen beebee

The interpretation I prefer – call it the ‘projectivist’ interpretation – is just as you said: causation is just something our minds impose on events out there in the world. We do, in fact, infer effects from causes.’

Lewis says that our aim as philosophers is to find out ‘what equilibria there are that can withstand examination’, where an ‘equilibrium’ is basically a reasonably complete body of philosophical ‘opinion’. ‘

Our basic idea is that the Humean view of laws connects with a ‘compatibilist’ view about free will – compatibilism being the view that free will is compatible with determinism. ‘

Amongst social sciences and humanities, philosophy showed the second-lowest representation of women (worst was music composition) and far and away the strongest belief that success requires innate brilliance. There’s a similar pattern in the sciences, where maths and physics have the strongest belief that success requires innate brilliance and amongst the lowest representation of women.’

Helen Beebee is the Principal investigator on the AHRC-funded project, ‘The age of metaphysical revolution: David Lewis and his place in the history of analytic philosophy’, one of the co-editors of Philosophy and Phenomenological Research and an associate editor of the Journal of the American Philosophical Association; she is also on the editorial boards of Hume Studies and the Australasian Journal of Philosophy. She is currently President of the British Society for the Philosophy of Science and President Elect of the Aristotelian Society, and co-chair (with Jenny Saul) of the BPA/Society for Women in Philosophy (UK) Committee for Women in Philosophy. She has an interest in the under-representation of women in philosophy (women make up about 25% of permanent academic staff in the UK). With Jenny Saul she wrote a report on behalf of the British Philosophical Association and the Society for Women in Philosophy UK in 2011. Here she discusses Hume on causation, whether Hume creates or destroys systems, whether it would be rational to drop the subject of metaphysics of causation, how any theory of causation has to fit in with all the other metaphysical pieces, whether anything holds the universe together, free will, and the issue of why there are so few women in philosophy.

08/09/18: Chelsea Manning in Conversation with James Bridle

Monday 1 October, 2pm / The Royal Institution

Technologist Chelsea Manning is in conversation with artist and writer James Bridle, discussing the rise of artificial intelligence and the role of AI in public policy, the state of the data economy, and the issues faced by transgender people today. A network security expert, Manning is a vocal advocate for government transparency and LGBTQ+ rights. Among topics to be explored with Bridle are the emergence of details surrounding the Panama Papers and Edward Snowden, as well the relationship of digital technologies to democracy – if, their use by Cambridge Analytica shows that digital tools can be manipulated to undermine democratic processes, the pair also consider ways in which democracy in the digital age could yet be restored, indeed enhanced.

Tickets available exclusively to ICA Red Members until 17 September. Book

Chelsea Manning worked as an intelligence analyst for the U.S. Department of Defense, where the classified documents she disclosed to the public revealed human rights abuses and corruption connected to the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Upon receipt of a 35-year sentence for leaking government documents, an unprecedented amount of time for a whistleblower to be served, Manning publicly identified as a trans woman and asserted her legal rights to medical therapy. After seven years in military prison, President Barack Obama commuted Manning’s sentence, and she was released in 2017. She now speaks on the social, technological and economic ramifications of AI, and on the practical applications of machine learning.

James Bridle is an artist and writer working across technologies and disciplines. His artworks have been commissioned by galleries and institutions and exhibited worldwide, including online. His writing on literature, culture and networks has appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers such as Wired, Domus, Cabinet, the Atlantic, the New Statesman, the Guardian and the Observer. He lectures regularly at conferences, universities, and other events. New Dark Age, his book about technology, knowledge, and the end of the future, was published by Verso (UK & US) in 2018. His work can be found on his website.

Supported by Vivienne Westwood

Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Mall, London SW1Y 5AH


LIVEWIRE is a monthly tour of shows, exhibitions and events around town. Expect performance art, politically engaged art, photography, poetry, and magic. By @JanaAstanov.


Grace Exhibition Space‎
Sept 7th Friday at 5 PM – 10 PM
Grace Exhibition Space new address: 182 AVENUE C in MANHATTAN, NYC 

Celebrating the opening of the new Grace Exhibition Space with performances by Martin O’Brien, Miao Jiaxin, Jaguar Mary, Oya Damla.

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/2150202525248126/



September 7 – October 7 , 2018
Opening: Fri Sept 7th from 6-8pm

Group exhibition featuring works by by John Drue, Frank Wang Yefeng, and Jamie Martinez, Liminality explores themes of ritualistic surreality through mixed media works.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theborderprojectspace/


POST- sculpture exhibition by Virginija Babušytė-Venckuvienė
Opening: Fri Sept 7th from 6-9pm
SLA 307 West 30th St

Nature is constantly re-creating us and filling us with knowledge. Life is like a crumbling sand that we are sprinkling between our hands…

This exhibition is like two lives: Past and Present… Past with projection to future: life history, emotions, feelings, losses, beliefs, finding the basis… Present – Future – Whole is as if it is falling apart…

Website link: https://www.sla307.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Sla307ArtSpace/


September 11th 7:30 pm- Midnight
252 Green St, Brooklyn, NY 
Pankhurst in the Park 2018 Art salon @ Mothership NYC

Anna FC Smith – Bibi Flores – Kelly Shaw Willman – Pablo Melchor –  Lotte Karlsen – ULTRACULTURAL OTHERS

2nd Tuesdays at The Mothership NYC are informal, salon-style gatherings for artist friends & colleagues and other arts appreciators…A creative flow traveling from the EMINENT DOMAIN flash exhibition staged at the former blue-chip Robert Miller gallery space in West Chelsea in July, it has organically stemmed from Alexandra Arts recent collaboration with ART 511 Magazine. The evening will open with Lotte Karlsen joined in conversation with Art 511 Magazine publisher and artist Scotto Mycklebust. Doors open at 7:30 pm till late. Wine will be served. Bring friends.

Web link: https://www.alexandra-arts.org.uk/events/2018/9/11/art-salon-at-mothership-nyc


Katya Grokhovsky: Theater of the Mundane
Friday, September 14 at 6 PM – 9 PM
Chashama: 273 Bleecker St, New York, NY 10014-4102

“Theater of the Mundane”, is a site-specific multi-media performative installation by Katya Grokhovsky, presented at chashama space to present at 273 Bleecker st New York, NY, which explores the absurdity of the human condition through sculpture, assemblage, painting, video and performance.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/953099641540550/


SUSPENSE by Lital Dotan
Thu, September 20 9 PM – 10 PM
Glasshouse 246 Union Ave, Brooklyn, New York 11211

‘Suspense’ a live performance by Lital Dotan, part of a new performance series called ‘Rear Window’ at Glasshouse.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/706355986378690/


“As Far as the Heart Can See”- Opening and Curatorial Walkthrough
Friday, Sept 21, 5pm
EFA Project Space: 323 West 39th Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10018

Did you know this September marks *10 years* of EFA Project Space? Launched in September 2008, Project Space was founded on the belief that art is intrinsically tied to everyday life, with the mission to enrich individuals who produce it and the communities that arise because of it. To celebrate 10 years, we return to the heart of the matter with As Far as the Heart Can See, curated by Nicolás Dumit Estévez Raful — an exhibition featuring daring, playful, and groundbreaking performance.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/514239275671543/


Art in Odd Places BODY Festival
Festival Kick-off Wed September 26 at 6 PM – 1 AM
The Beauty Bar 231 E 14th St, New York, New York 10003

Join Art in Odd Places BODY NYC team and participating artists in celebrating the launch of the 2018 Festival and Exhibition.

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/276126573207441/


Grace Exhibition Space‎
Sept 7th Friday at 5 PM – 10 PM
Grace Exhibition Space new address: 182 AVENUE C in MANHATTAN, NYC 

Celebrating the opening of the new Grace Exhibition Space with performances by Martin O’Brien, Miao Jiaxin, Jaguar Mary, Oya Damla.

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/2166543160338534/


Panoply Performance Laboratory, Civic Reflex/Reflejo Civico 2018
Saturday, Sept 29 at 8 PM – 11 PM
Panoply Performance Laboratory, 104 Meserole St, Brooklyn, New York 11206

CIVIC REFLEX is a collective performance/social art project involving: 1) the formation of a self-reflexive collective of 20 artists/groups 2) a series of 5 public forum events and 3) an online blog substantiating and framing “civic” “civil” and “reflexive” performance practices and performative theoretics.

Website link: http://www.panoplylab.org/

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/247659239110541/?event_time_id=247659255777206


SIZE MATTERS curated by William Norton
September 29, 2018 – October 7, 2018
Opening September 28, 2018 from 12-8 pm
Performances Saturday, September 29 starting at 3pm
100 Bogart Street Gallery, 100 Bogart Street, Brooklyn NY 11206

SIZE MATTERS: the exhibition that asks that question
Curator William Norton has assembled artists from Japan, China, the USA and the UAE to get to the heart of the issue that keeps artists up every night: Does Size Matter? Asian cultures conceive the importance of scale in relationship to value differently than Western artists. This question of scale is the driving vision behind this show: is intimacy only possible in the small scale and can a question of mythological proportions only be expressed in a grand manner?

Facebook Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/261805481116950/


: New Poets of Native Nations and the Hybridized American Identity

By Gabriel Boudali.

Heid E. Erdrich (editor), New Poets of Native Nations (Graywolf, 2018)


“then I heard a poet trouble and say:


I’m a straw man for leftist critique.”

                                                —Layli Long Soldier


In the introduction to the June 2018 issue of Poetry, Heid E. Erdrich asserts the notion that “there is no such thing as Native American poetry.” She wants to make it clear that the work collected in the issue, and in the newly published anthology, New Poets of Native Nations, is not defined by a demographic metric, stating that:

we are poets who belong to Native Nations. There are 573 Native Nations. Their relationship to the US federal government is as nation to nation. We also know who we are and we determine our own membership and citizenship. We write into, out of, even despite this fact.

This powerful sentiment expresses the tricky reality of being an artist who belongs to a hybrid culture, one formed by the history of colonialism alongside contemporary ideas on identity. What does it mean to be of a Native Nation? What does it mean to be a poet, writing “into, out of, even despite” the tradition of a white, Eurocentric literary canon?

New Poets of Native Nations is an ambitious project designed to bring together voices of poets who published their first book in the twenty-first century. As editor, Erdrich makes clear the intention to showcase work that confronts contemporary society. In her introduction, she states, “my criterion that a poet have a clear connection to a Native nation has nothing to do with blood quantum,” eschewing the legal metric by which the US federal government determines Native nation citizenship. Rather, most of the contributors to the anthology are “multiracial” and that “not one of them identifies as ‘Native American’ alone.” This fact makes the anthology a unique primary source for understanding the complexities, and beauty, of hybrid identity and culture.

In her introduction to Hybrid Identities: Theoretical and Empirical Examinations,  an anthology of sociological analyses of the globalizing world, editor Keri E. Iyall Smith defines hybridity as the “reflexive relationship between the local and global,” where “identities are not assimilated or altered independently, but instead elements of cultures are incorporated to create new hybrid culture.” Understanding the nature of this exchange remains the critical task of the moment. As we approach a new decade, and the twilight of this American century darkens, new voices will lead the way. The concept of identity—when hybridized by global, local, and subcultural communities—will   redefine aesthetics as the dominant cultures of history recalibrate to include, and bring to the fore, those individuals who have experienced the conditions of the colonized, the worker, the unrepresented, the displaced, and the oppressed.

Sy Hoahwah’s poetry, which appears in both Poetry and New Poets of Native Nations, often employs a righteously sardonic tone when expressing the manifold configurations of identity in the context of place. Take his poem “Hillbilly Leviathan” with its opening image: “The Ozarks are where defeated assassins, the unholy / and monsters come to retire.” The smart conjunctive following the line break evokes a gathering of sundry characters, undesirables who have retired in a region which exemplifies recreation and leisure for some, and extreme poverty for others. This opening stanza finishes with wit and aplomb, “The proper soil and crooked moonlight grow back / the disemboweled, the decapitated, / while we collect arrears in child support for our demi-god children.” Again a description of the unlucky inhabitants of the place, disembodied but hopefully healing, while the turn to the first person plural signifies either a kinship or further isolation within the group. The poem continues mostly with the first person, the speaker self-defining with grim metaphors of disembodiment and smallness: “I, tongue of snakes. / Cut up, dipped in powder sugar,” and “An online southern Christian university ordained my smoker’s cough / to be a dove.” The poem ends with the somewhat miserable humor successfully employed throughout: “Like my burial site, I am party-size.” This final image calls to mind all the native burial grounds lost or developed on throughout US history, against an example of the individually packaged-and-sized consumptive nature of America.

In “The Internal Colony Hybrid: Reformulating Structure, Culture, and Agency,” an article included in Hybrid Identities, author Roderick Bush uses W.E.B. DuBois’ idea of Double Consciousness and the history of the Black Liberation movement to describe the relationship of a nation within a nation, or a population colonized within a dominant culture. The history of Indigenous populations in the United States and elsewhere represent prime examples of this colonial phenomenon. Not isolated by geography, but actually part of the fabric of the society which has colonized it, the population of the internal colony struggles most poignantly with the local/global divide, trying to hold on to their traditional culture while being made to adhere to the values and law of colonial rule. From this situation springs a unique individual, existing between cultures and yet precluded from those opportunities which would allow them to flourish fully in either sphere, traditional or political. But Bush argues convincingly that “the hybrid culture then becomes a source of agency that is important in the ability to impact change within these societies.” As poets, the artists collected in New Poets of Native Nations occupy a powerful role culturally, and a book like this, at this moment, acts as a looking-glass for  white-dominated culture. As challenges to the status quo of global capital, environmental degradation, and underserved communities rise in pitch, the perspectives held by these poets offer vital reading.

An essential poem in this collection—one that perfectly illustrates the nature of the internal colony and the sordid history of Native nations colonized by the US government—is Layli Long Soldier’s poem “38.” In a unique formal experiment, Long Soldier’s poem acts as poetic history lesson detailing the demise of the Dakota 38 and the political conditions surrounding their execution. Early in the poem, there is this disclaimer: “You may like to know, I do not consider this a ‘creative piece.’” This warning lets the reader know that in this piece, history takes precedence over its creative interpretation.

The Dakota 38 refers to thirty-eight Dakota men who were executed by hanging,
under orders from President Abraham Lincoln.

To date, this is the largest “legal” mass execution in US history.

The hanging took place on December 26, 1862—the day after Christmas.

This was the same week that President Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation.

In the preceding sentence I italicize “same week” for emphasis.

There was a movie titled Lincoln about the presidency of Abraham Lincoln.

The signing of the Emancipation Proclamation was included in the film Lincoln; the hanging of the Dakota 38 was not.

Rather than retell this history with poetic flourishes, Long Soldier avoids certain cliché affectations of what had once been considered “Native American poetry.” The poem succeeds because a reader’s common expectation from poetry is to experience a delicate artifice, a nuanced perspective, but here we have a poet bluntly declaiming the injustice of history and the continued disgrace of a society that still fails to come to terms with its own atrocities. By referring to the Steven Spielberg movie Lincoln, Long Soldier calls out the dominant culture’s efforts at mythologizing a white national hero, by downplaying or ignoring the same hero’s involvement in the subjugation of entire populations. Her approach raises important questions. How does a poet confront their ancestry in the context of such history? What are the mechanisms by which an individual successfully acknowledges their identity in a society containing communities that can either accept or reject such expression?

In confronting identity, poets have the unique opportunity to both question and express their own contradictions, eccentricities, and amalgamated forms of language in a manner that is either clear or experimental. But for these Native poets there can be an added layer of confusion and trauma involved. Several tackle the near extinction of native languages head on, such as Margaret Noodin whose bilingual poetry is published in both Anishinaabemowin and English, or Craig Santos Perez, a native Chamoru from Guam, who makes liberal use of indigenous vocabulary throughout his poems, creating a breath for English readers in which they must pause and reflect on the origins of voice. These poets, linguistically displaced, are American authors writing in English despite the fact that their identity has been formed from previous generations who spoke in different tongues. In a sense, the work of poets of Native Nations might be seen as the translated utterances of victims of American imperialism. As native languages continue to disappear, it will fall to these poets to not only resurrect and preserve their native tongues, but to memorialize the loss.

Some poets, however, take a different approach in their use of language. With refreshing wit, Tommy Pico offers a radical rejection of identity stereotypes as he challenges what is perhaps the most intrinsic aspect of what had been called Native American poetry—the dominant imagery of nature’s power and force. In his book, Nature Poem, Pico constructs the book with a singular speaker whose voice is confident but struggling:

You can’t be an NDN person in today’s world

and write a nature poem. I swore to myself I would never write a nature
poem. Let’s be clear, I hate nature—hate its guts

I say to my audience. There is something smaller I say to myself:

I don’t hate nature at all. Places have thoughts—hills have backs that love being stroked by our eyes. The river gobbles down its tract as a metaphor but also abt its day. The bluffs purr when we put down blankets at the downturn of the sun and laugh at a couple on a obvi OkCupid date

and even more stellar, the jellybean moon sugars at me. She flies and
beams and I breathe.

Fuck that. I recant. I slap myself.

With his rejection of the literary formality of English language poetry and the use of abbreviated language and internet colloquialisms, Pico’s speaker is a product of our time. Further still, the speaker declares “you can’t be an NDN person in today’s world / and write a nature poem” because doing so recalls the stereotype of the noble native attached to the land. The urban lifestyle of a gay man in New York City, as expressed in Pico’s work, stands as a rejection of this perceived primitivism. But as the poem continues, we see the speaker struggle with this rejection. Nature has “guts” and thoughts” and becomes animated in the poet’s contemporary imagery of the “jellybean moon.” His fiery voice is a strong expression of the hybridized identity. Cultures collide and his speaker is there to assess the damage and speak to the emergence of something powerful and new from the ashes.

Of course, a troubled connection to nature is not the norm. In fact, many Native poets embrace a deep affinity with the land, a tradition that characterizes much of American poetry, but is most poignantly felt by those whose ancestors lived on this continent for millennia. In “Dog Moon Night at Noatak” dg nanouk okpik recounts a dog-sled run in a terrifying landscape of “crested bergs” and a “cobalt blue snow scape” as some seemingly distant speaker recalls becoming sick along the journey:

In sledge a fever broke with a dry
hoarse cry of stomach pain. We went.
My goose-feathered flesh indigo,
his face pale but red at the cheekbones.
Yet shiny from the hoarfrost sweat like
the needles pricking the ice as it bleeds.

When is cold     cold?  Are we there yet?
When is rain      rain?  Does it matter to many?
What’s left         Behind or ahead? As now approaches.

The poem’s dramatic landscape is transferred onto the bodies of those within it, dramatizing the power of nature. The interrogatory stanza forces the reader to reflect on the passage of time within the context of a conveyance of a sick body. “Goose-feathered flesh indigo” and “hoarfrost sweat” are terrifyingly beautiful images inspiring fear and awe. dg nanouk okpik ends the poem with these sentiments at a place removed from the landscape described above, “I gaze up, view the dog moon in silence, and shiver.” Nature as a powerful force will never fail to affect the American psyche, and it should do so even more now as climate change creates disaster after disaster.

There is no such thing as Native American poetry. This notion liberates poets and readers from the stereotypes of “native” or “indigenous” imagery. Artistic movements and communities exist to advance certain goals, to create new ways of thinking. In New Poets of Native Nations, the artists can be read as those agents of change who come from oppressed and underrepresented communities, but only when their poems ask us to do so. Nevertheless, identity remains central, and invites readers to immerse themselves in the experiences of others. Poets welcome readers into their lives, and when they express the trauma and confusion that arises from a history of being othered and the politics of globalizing modes of exchange, we must listen carefully. Empathy should be the dominant mode and effect of literature. In order to achieve this, our contemporary moment requires us to reimagine a world order that recognizes the malfeasance of dominant culture, and prioritize the views and experiences of the historically underrepresented. Collections like these, which move away from stereotype and embrace the full spectrum of identity and style, help to define art by un-defining it.

This brings us back to Layli Long Soldier’s poignant image : “then I heard a poet trouble and say: / I’m a straw man for leftist critique.” Sitting all alone on the page, this evocative scene is startling. How free are poets, artists and citizens to challenge dominant culture? How does one avoid the fallacy of having their view of history distorted, and when will society at large accept the oppressive results brought about by imperial power and economics? Perhaps another reading of this same scene would be that—as this essay might represent—the oversimplification or misrepresentation of one’s view or identity is inevitable. It is difficult to identify precisely the origins of a poet’s utterances, even when they speak politically, because the political mode isn’t at all reductive, but vastly complex and formative. To categorize New Poets of Native Nations as a product of certain cultural contexts and a tool towards justice is an effort that might seem shallow considering the diversity of poetic brilliance collected within its pages. But these poets seem to be asserting their voices, their unique perspectives and experiences as powerful individuals within a society of weakening dominant traditions. They lead the way in a shift in American poetry. One could say, the author isn’t dead, but sings very loudly.


Gabriel Boudali is a writer living in Richmond, VA.

03/09/18: HowTheLightGetsIn Festival Update

2018 Festival Programme

Sat 22nd September
Sun 23rd September

We’ve already highlighted some of the philosophers at the event who we’ve interviewed at 3:AM here.  Another one is Sean Carroll the philosophically-minded physicist.

Sean Carroll is the uber-chillin’ philosophical physicist who investigates how the preposterous universe works at a deep level, who thinks spats between physics and philosophy are silly, who thinks a wise philosopher will always be willing to learn from discoveries of science, who asks how we are to live if there is no God, who is comfortable with naturalism and physicalism, who thinks emergentism central, that freewill is a crucial part of our best higher-level vocabulary, that there aren’t multiple levels of reality, which is quantum based not relativity based, is a cheerful realist, disagrees with Tim Maudlin about wave functions and Craig Callender about multiverses, worries about pseudo-scientific ideas and that the notion of ‘domains of applicability’ is lamentably under-appreciated and will be at the festival! Don’t miss him!

: Alison Turnbull at Rodić Davidson Architects, London, Weds 5 September

Please join us at 1 Pied Bull Yard on Wednesday 5 September at 6–8 pm for a drink to celebrate the display of Alison Turnbull’s Japanese Paintings. The paintings are being displayed in the Bury Place windows of Rodić Davidson Architects throughout the summer. Alison will be joined by Tony White, author of the critically acclaimed, Oulipo-inspired detective novel The Fountain in the Forest (Faber and Faber). At 7pm Tony will read an extract from the short story he contributed to Alison Turnbull’s artist’s book Spring Snow – A Translation (Book Works). The London Review Bookshop next-door will be open on the evening and copies of both books will be available.

  • Weds 5 September, 6–8pm, Rodić Davidson Architects, 1 Pied Bull Yard, London, WC1A 2AE

25/08/18: How The Light Gets In Festival

2018 Festival Programme

Sat 22nd September
Sun 23rd September

Philosophers appearing who are part of the 3:AM Magazine’s End Times series:

Markus Gabriel  who broods on why the world doesn’t exist and never stops wondering about Kant, existence, pluralism, fields of sense, Huw Price, about why he isn’t po-mo, nor a Meinongian, about why unicorns exist, about why he’s a realist, about dissolving the hard problem, about why naturalism and physicalism are wrong, about Schelling and post-Kantian idealism, about Badiou and Meillassouz, Heidegger, about resisting skepticism, about negative philosophy, mythology, madness, laughter and the need for illusions in metaphysics, and about the insult that is the continental/analytic divide . Gird up for an amazing story…

Patricia Churchland who thinks we are hardwired to care. She took a flame-thrower to her armchair so she ought to have one of Josh Knobe’s t-shirts. She is an eliminative materialist and a genius.

Tim Lewens who discusses how to draw the line between science and pseudo-science, the application of evolutionary science to the social sciences, his skepticism towards selectionist approaches, problems with the ‘culture’ concept, co-evolutionary modelling, whether there’s a robust distinction between human nature and human culture, bioethics and enhancement, why synthetic biology isn’t about mastery of nature, origin essentialism, why distributive justice should factor in genes, the ethics of risk, the relationship between biology and ethics, the relevance of evolutionary biology for general work in ethics, and why science and philosophy should play nice.

03/08/18: The Missing Links

Deborah Levy and Olivia Laing in conversation. * Olivia Laing and Ali Smith in conversation. * David Hayden on the women who influenced his writing. * On Eugene Thacker‘s Infinite Resignation. * For Saul Leiter, “simply looking at the world was enough”. * Lauren Elkin on the new motherhood books. * How auto is autofiction? * Amy Liptrot on her pregnancy: “Thinking can be overwhelming – this unexpected baby changes everything and the mysteries of life are happening inside my body – and I just need to be a wild beast, a physical being using my senses”. * The strange brilliance of Gerald Murnane. * More Gerald Murnane. * Glen Matlock’s London. * On Schopenhauer. * On Heidegger. * Remember the Offbeat Generation? * Glenn Branca RIP. * The New York Times on the late Glenn Branca: “Many of his works are meant to be performed at high volumes, partly so that the overtones of his amplified guitars would linger and pile up, creating a phantom layer of harmony beyond what the musicians were playing, and partly as a purely tactile element, meant to both envelop and physically shake his listeners”. * The Quietus on Glenn Branca. * The Guardian, Rolling Stone and Libération on Glenn Branca. * The Situationists and May 68. * “You are fucking cosmic.” Congratulation to Charlotte Amelia Poe. * Irmin Schmidt of Can interviewed. * Nuit Chris Marker. * Patricia Lockwood on Rachel Cusk‘s trilogy: “The step down isn’t there. Reality ruptures”. * Rachel Kushner, Spinoza with lipstick. * Rachel Kushner interviewed in Interview. * Back to the literary future with Michael Caines. * Brian Dillon on In the Dark Room. * Brian Dillon at Shakespeare and Company. * Brian Dillon on female essayists. * Edmund White on Arthur Cravan. * On Modernism’s belatedness. * An interview with Andrew Latimer of Little Island Press: “Your favourite qualities in a person? The propensity for self-effacement”. * The great Viv Albertine interviewed: “Now, everyone has gone to music school and they all play brilliantly and you think, Why are they even playing live? It’s all so bloody middle class now”. * Viv Albertine on Front Row. * Geoff Dyer on Garry Winogrand. * Geoff Dyer interview. * Geoff Dyer on “the dental equivalent of the end of history”. * Chris Power on book reviews. * Blyth Power. * Our very own Eley Williams interviewed in The White Review. * Tony White on Little Atoms (Resonance FM) and on the Guardian‘s books podcast. * On lost books. * The collected writing of Robert Smithson. * Juliet Jacques, Jonathan Coe and Jennifer Hodgson on British experimental fiction. * Ann Quin reading from Three. * Jennifer Hodgson on Ann Quin, plus an interview here. * Jennifer Hodgson on Quin’s Berg. * Jonathan Coe (quoting Stewart Home!) on Ann Quin. * Josie Mitchell on Ann Quin. * Deborah Levy on Ziggy Stardust: “In my view, Bowie was a great writer. He has influenced me more than Tolstoy ever will do”. * Joanna Walsh on literary necrophilia in the 21st century. * Joanna Walsh on Front Row. * Joanna Walsh on Monocle 24. * Claire-Louise Bennett in Le Monde. * Lauren Elkin on the women of surrealism: “in gazing too much at these women, we avoid looking directly at their art”. * Georges Perec‘s Les lieux d’une fugue (film, 1979). * Marguerite Duras on translation. * Unpublished Roland Barthes! * Nicholas Blincoe on Nick Land. * The story of David Bowie on BBC6 Music. * Mark Stewart interviewed by Mark Fisher. * ITV News commemorates punk’s 40th anniversary. * Regarding the em dash. * Will Self: Years ago, I said [novel-writing] would become a conservatoire form, like easel painting or the symphony, but I didn’t quite understand how all of these kids in creative writing programs, and their constant focus-grouping, would create a new form that’s halfway between hobbyism and literature. It’s an occupation for wealthy Western youth who are marking time. Because there are more writers than readers now, it’s decoupled from any conversation. It’s like a great internal rumination”. * Will Self on Walbersick. * 3:AM‘s Tristan Foster on Gerald Murnane: “In Gerald Murnane’s infamous archives, the reclusive Australian writer has files titled ‘I give up writing fiction — again!’, ‘(Yet again) why I stopped writing’, and ‘Should I tell Literature to get fucked?’” * Emmett Stinson on Gerald Murnane. * The New York Times on Gerald Murnane. *  They were the mods, they were the mods, they were, they were, they were the mods. * On Raymond Radiguet. *

25/07/18: Throbbing Gristle


Throbbing Gristle announce the second phase of their ongoing reissues with Mute. 14 September 2018 will see remastered editions of Journey Through a Body (on silver vinyl and CD) and Mission of Dead Souls (on white vinyl and CD) available, while Heathen Earth will be re-released on blue vinyl and as a 2CD set.

The releases follow the 40th anniversary release of The Second Annual Report, as well as new editions of 20 Jazz Funk Greats and The Taste Of TG: A Beginner’s Guide to Throbbing Gristle.

JOURNEY THROUGH A BODY (1982, Industrial Records), widely referred to as Throbbing Gristle’s most haunting work, was recorded as a piece of radio art for Italian National Radio RAI, Rome in March 1981. Following Robert Wyatt’s recommendation, RAI originally commissioned Cosey Fanni Tutti to create a sound work based on the theme of ‘A Journey Through the Body’. This went on to become a Throbbing Gristle project – first broadcast by the RAI, Journey Through a Body was the band’s final studio recording prior to 2004’s reactivation of the band.

Recorded in five days, a day per body section, the tracks were not pre-planned and nothing was re-recorded or added to after the track’s initial recording, instead each track was mixed immediately. “What’s most noticeable about the album, as a sonic experience is the openness to acoustic instrumentation on display.” (The Vinyl Factory) and Journey Through a Body stands as a perfect testament to Throbbing Gristle’s artistic ethos. Unavailable on vinyl since 1983, Journey Through a Body will be released on silver vinyl with a foil-blocked cover featuring photos from the session. The album is also available on all digital platforms for the first time, and on CD after being long out of print.

MISSION OF DEAD SOULS (1981, Industrial Records) documents the final performance, before Throbbing Gristle’s original disbanding (the band reactivated in 2004 before their final performance in 2010). Recorded at the Kezar Pavillion, San Francisco on 29 May 1981, the album “proves that TG’s assault never lacked talent or skill.” – AllMusic. The album has been unavailable on vinyl since the early 1990s, and is here presented on limited edition white vinyl, recreating the original sleeve with the addition of silver ink, with a new inner sleeve including photographs and a passage by Jon Savage.

A public statement by Throbbing Gristle stating ‘This Mission Is Terminated’ was released following Mission of Dead Souls, and the legacy of the band began to solidify with its influence on generations of artists to come. The album is also available on all digital platforms for the first time, and on CD after being long out of print.

HEATHEN EARTH, originally released in 1980 (Industrial Records), is a live document of a performance by Throbbing Gristle to a small and invited audience on 16 February 1980.

Described by The Quietus as “more cohesive and marshaled” than any of their other live recordings, the album is a testament to a band at the height of their creative powers, recorded just over a year before Throbbing Gristle disbanded and terminated the mission.

Heathen Earth will be released on 2CD and as a limited edition blue vinyl in a gatefold sleeve, echoing, for the first time since its original release, the first pressing of the album (the initial blue pressing was an edition of only 750 copies, before the album was repressed on black vinyl). The vinyl also contains an eight-page 12” booklet entitled ‘Industrial News’ dedicated to the Heathen Earth and includes an unseen photographic print from the performance. The album comes with a digital copy of 11 bonus tracks, including live recordings from 1980 and 7” versions of ‘Subhuman’ and ‘Adrenalin’.

Throbbing Gristle are Chris Carter, Peter ‘Sleazy’ Christopherson (who sadly passed away on 25 November 2010), Cosey Fanni Tutti and Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, their impact on music, culture and the arts is immeasurable and still felt today.

20/07/18: Taxidermy Tour: Behind the Scenes and Private Collection


We are very excited to announce a special taxidermy tour this September with opportunities to view rarely seen Walter Potter tableaux as well as private collections, historic mansions and 19th century museums–front and back stage. The tour will be organized and led by Dr Pat Morris, taxidermy historian and foremost collector of the work of eccentric Victorian taxidermist Walter Potter.

We will also pay several visits to Dr Morris’ home, where we will see rarely seen Walter Potter pieces including one of his most famous tableaux, The Death and Burial of Cock Robin (1861) (above and bottom center) along with pieces by Hermann Ploucquet (bottom right), Rowland Ward and Peter Spicer; thousands of documents and photographs; and copies of all the books on taxidermy published in Britain (some not even in the British Library!) and a selection of works from other countries.

You will find more information below; Space is limited to only 9 people. If you are interested, please email us at morbidanatomy [a] gmail.com before July 26. More detailed information, booking form and request for a deposit will be mailed to you with a deadline of mid August to confirm your participation.Taxidermy Tour: Behind the Scenes and Private Collection Taxidermy Tour with Dr Pat Morris, Taxidermy history expert and author of Walter Potter’s Curious World of Taxidermy
September 3-9, 2018
London and environs
$2000-$2200 (Exact number given when we determine the number of attendees; Includes hotels, transportation within the UK, museum admissions, and some meals. Attendees will be responsible for their own airfare to and from London.)
Trip limited to 9 plus 3 staff members.
Please email us at morbidanatomy [a] gmail.com before July 26 if you might be interested in joining. More detailed information, booking form and request for a deposit will be mailed to you with a deadline of mid August to confirm your participation.

Please join us this September for an exclusive taxidermy tour featuring rarely seen Walter Potter pieces as well as private collections, historic mansions and 19th century museums–front and back stage–led by Dr Pat Morris, taxidermy historian and foremost collector of the work of eccentric Victorian taxidermist Walter Potter. He will be assisted by Joanna Ebenstein, creator of Morbid Anatomy and co-author and lead photographer on Walter Potter’s Curious World of Taxidermy, and Laetitia Barbier, Morbid Anatomy head librarian.

On this trip. we’ll pay several visits Dr Morris’ home, where we will see rarely seen Walter Potter pieces, including one of his most famous tableaux, The Death and Burial of Cock Robin (1861). We will also see the tableau A Friend in Need is a Friend Indeed; Potter’s stuffed pet cat and dog, and his first piece of taxidermy, a canary along with rare archival materials, books, magic lantern slides, and ephemera related to the Potter Museum.

The Morris Collection also contains pieces by around 150 taxidermists, including Hermann Ploucquet, whose anthropomorphic pieces delighted Queen Victoria and probably inspired a young Potter. There are also pieces by British taxidermists Rowland Ward and Peter Spicer; thousands of documents and photographs; and copies of all the books on taxidermy published in Britain (some not even in the British Library!) and a selection of works from other countries.

We will also visit the home of professional taxidermist Barry Williams, which houses his personal extensive collection of historic specimens. We will see him at work, and join him for afternoon tea while we enjoy a tour of his collection.

The trip will also feature special guided tours by Dr Morris of the UK’s most historic and fascinating natural history collections, such as Tring Natural History Museum, opened in 1892 to make available to the public the private collation of rich eccentric Lionel Walter Rothschild; The Booth Museum of Natural History, founded in 1874 and featuring pioneering ‘habitat group’ displays from the 19th century; The Horniman Museum, founded to showcase the Frederick John Horniman personal collection ‘illustrating natural history and the arts and handicrafts of various peoples of the world’ from around 1860 (with a visit to the Museum’s store to see the beautiful Hart collection of British birds); The Grant Museum of Zoology, one of the oldest natural history collections in the UK famous for its jar of moles and rare specimens such as a qyuagga skeleton, preserved Tazmanian Tigers, and dodo bones; the London Natural History Museum a 19th century ‘cathedral to nature’ housing its infamous hummingbird cabinet; The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art and Natural History, which presents the world displayed through wonder enclosed within a tiny space, inspired by the pre-enlightenment origins of the museum as Wunderkabinett; and The Saffron Walden Museum with a small natural history collection dating to 1832 and ‘Wallace’ a famous lion. There will also be a stop off to experience “human taxidermy” in the form of the auto-icon of Jeremy Bentham.

There will also be special guided tours of two magnificent National Trust historic mansions: Calke Abbey; this is a huge mansion originally built in the 12th century as an Augustinian priory and housing a varied collection of stuffed birds, mammals, fossils, and other natural history oddities gathered by a succession of the eccentric owners who lived there over the centuries and Audley End House, a mansion built in the early 17th century and housing the second largest display of historic country house taxidermy open to the public in Britain including many spectacular ornamental bird case

Some evenings may be devoted to talks by Dr Morris on topics such as ‘historical taxidermy’ and the massive Van Ingen factory in India illustrated by pieces from Dr Morris’ collection.