After the triumph of OK Computer, Radiohead fell into a creative tailspin -- and frontman Thom Yorke into a nervous breakdown. Exhausted from touring, hounded by press, and jaded by copycats, he escaped into the electronica scene pioneered by Kraftwerk and Warp Records -- fertile ground, the band discovered. Trading spacey rock for apocalyptic brooding, they teased their new sound not with singles or music videos but with innovative web streaming and cryptic, dreamlike "blips" -- winterlands, flocks of cubes, eyeballs, bears. After nearly breaking up over tracklist angst, they cut the kid in half. Thus fifteen years ago today, Kid A and (later) Amnesiac debuted, a confounding mix of electronic fugue, whalesong, pulsing IDM, drunken piano, and epic jazz funeral whose insights into anxiety, political dysfunction, and climate crisis would make it one of the most revered albums of the twenty-first century. See the documentary Reflections on Kid A for interviews and live cuts, or look inside for much more. [more inside]
[Denis Wood wrote] a crazy dissertation. It’s about maps, mental maps, getting kicked off a bus, psychogeography, single element veridicality analysis, Europe, cartography, Kevin Lynch, passed-out subjects, Peter Gould, psychogeomorphology, the Shirelles, and the invention of “Environmental a” – a language for mapping. Among other things. It is driving the wrong way down the one-way-street of academia.
Nick Sousanis has been approved to write and submit what may be the first ever Ph.D. dissertation in comic book form. See here (PDF) for a taste of the style and content.
What Plagiarism Looks Like. William Meehan, president of Jacksonville State University, wrote his doctoral dissertation in 1999. Carl Boening wrote his in 1996. "Jacksonville State says no substance has been found in the charges, and no action by the university will be taken against him", but, well, look at the identical passages highlighted in the first link above (and keep in mind that other parts of Boening's dissertation were paraphrased in Meehan's). Sadly, this is not the first time that this has happened where a college president was involved.
The set of all-things-not-doctoral-dissertations, as a logician might say, has a vast and varied membership. Ocean liners, the square root of minus one, and pickled herring spring to mind.
Amusing notes on the requirements for a doctoral thesis in theology at Fordham University This is actually from the Graduate Student Handbook.
Can't seem to finish your thesis? Then this site may be for you. It's a support group for those of us who just can't seem to write up and finish off that Ph.D./Masters degree. It'll either give you hope and motivation or it'll make you more complacent. "Well, I guess I'm not the only one who's taking a long time; I won't stress out about it anymore".