In "Walking, Researching, Remembering: W. G. Sebald's The Rings of Saturn as Essay," Patrick Madden reaches a simple conclusion but visits along the way several points of wider interest in a discussion of essays in general. [more inside]
Act 1, scene 1. "The stage directions read, “Vienna. The Ringstrasse promenade at Sirk Corner. Flags wave from the buildings. Soldiers marching by are cheered by the onlookers. General excitement. The crowd breaks up into small groups.” The newsboys with their “Extra Extra,” announcing the outbreak of war, are interrupted by a drunk demonstrator who shouts “Down with Serbia! Hurrah for the Hapsburgs! Hurrah! For S-e-r-bia!” and is immediately kicked in the pants for his mistake (LTM, p. 69). A crook and a prostitute exchange insults, even as two army contractors, talking of possible bribes the rich will use to avoid the draft, cite Bismarck’s words, in Neue Freie Presse (Vienna’s major newspaper at the time of the assassination of the archduke in Serbia), to the effect that the Austrians deserve kissing. One officer tells another that war is “unanwendbar” (of no use) when he really means, as his friend points out, “unabwendbar” (unavoidable) (LTM, pp. 70–71). A patriotic citizen praises the coming conflict as a holy war of defense against “encirclement” by hostile forces, and the crowd responds by making up rhymes (in Viennese dialect) denigrating the enemy (LTM, p. 72)." [more inside]
"One can tell if one is happy by listening to the wind. This latter reminds the unhappy of the fragility of their house and pursues them in fitful sleep and violent dreams. To the happy, it sings the song of their safety and security: its raging whistle registers the fact that it no longer has any power over them."
Minima Moralia: Reflections from the Damaged Life is a book written by German sociologist and philosopher Theodor W. Adorno during his exile in California in the 1940s. Translator Dennis Redmond has released his translation under creative commons (here is the same translation set up in a more book-like way). In his essay Promiscuous Reading, Mark O'Connell talks about his habit of never finishing books, but an exception being "this captivatingly strange and mordant text" Minima Moralia, "a thematically wayward aggregation of a hundred and fifty-three short essays and aphorisms that darts restlessly from one subject matter to the next, its fleeting yet intense engagements rarely spanning more than a page and a half." Among the subject matters Adorno addresses is the ethics of writing, which has reverberated down through the years, and is often set up in opposition to George Orwell's thought, as recounted by James Miller in the essay Lingua Franca. [more inside]
"The theories and opinions of the German philosopher Theodor Wiesengrund Adorno (1903-1969) on popular music and the culture industry are still highly influential in the domain of media studies. His thoughts about these subjects were very critical, pessimistic even. Adorno analysed the workings of the culture industry in terms of 'standardization' and used the concept of 'pseudo-individualization' to describe its effects on the listeners.
"Ironic Detachment as an Escape from Routine" by Christopher Lasch ; Compared to What by Eugene McDaniels as performed by Les McCann ; What Is Cynical Reason? Peter Sloterdijk Explains ; Rainer Maria Rilke on Being and the Transitory ; Albert Einstein on Intellectuals and the Masses, Specialization and the Division of Labor, and the Quality of Life ; T.W. Adorno on Zen Buddhism ; Temporarily Humboldt County and Pondering the Spirit World with Seinfeld--just a taste of The Autodidact Project by Ralph Dumain (Librarian-Archivist-Information Specialist Researcher-Scholar) Can you dig it?
How to Speak and Write Postmodern. Here is an etymology of the word postmodern--it begins with Walter Toynbee. Who'd athunk? All of this comes from Contemporary Philosophy, Critical Theory and Postmodern Thought . The names lead not to essays but thorough links pages, like Ludwig Wittgenstein or Edmund Husserl. All the usual suspects are here--your Adorno, Baudrillard and the infamous Frankfurt School. *spooky ghost voice* Whoo-oo-oo! */spooky ghost voice* Well, there is Edward Said, but that one confuses me--I mean I read Edmund Husserl, and he, sir, is no Edmund Husserl. He actually makes sense. Which is more than I can say for Edmund Husserl. And it's all one huge page so you can scroll on down. Even I can do that. Hope I didn't brain my damage! To trump the smarty-pants who's going to link the Postmodernism Generator, I'm upping the ante--here's your Postmodern Mr. T.
Hey man, This time we're gonna do it my way!
Hey man, This time we're gonna do it my way!