Category Archives: Literary Theory

Descartes’s Stove

By | March 12, 2024

Guest post by Hsuan L. Hsu, author of Air Conditioning Because they were available long before artificial cooling, heating technologies are at the center of many early Western writings that reflect the cultural underpinnings of thermal comfort and air conditioning. Among the most eloquent examples of ambient temperature as a precondition for thought is the… Read More »

Spirit of the matter: relics and the mysteries of materiality

By | January 16, 2024

Guest post by Ed Simon, author of Relic “And since at such time miracles are sought,I would have that age by this paper taughtWhat miracles we harmless lovers wrought.” – John Donne, “The Relic” Behind a glass window and atop silk brocade lies the corpse of Zita in a gold-trimmed, blue habit. She is no… Read More »

Science Fiction and Narrative Form

By | September 18, 2023

The premise of the present book is simple. Like the epic and the novel, science fiction is a literary form. By that we mean a historical narrative form, which is at the same time a narrative form of history—history understood, as in French or German, in the double meaning of story and history. The subject… Read More »

Reading Baudelaire With Adorno: Dissonance, Subjectivity, Transcendence

By | September 13, 2023

To speak of Baudelaire is to speak of paradox and contradiction.  It is to speak of a poet who is modern, amodern, and antimodern, one who vaunts transcendent correspondences and lets his poet’s halo remain trapped in the mud of the urban street.  Baudelaire’s works defy any attempt characterize them except by way of a… Read More »

Relating suicide: bringing the body back in

By | February 23, 2023

Guest post by Anne Whitehead Suicide is a subject that is still not often talked about. When it is, we tend to focus the conversation on mental health. This is both understandable and important; a better understanding of mental health can help us to prevent further deaths. But having lost my sister to suicide twenty… Read More »

Glitter and the Fishing Lure

By | September 19, 2022

While researching my Object Lessons series book on glitter, I learned the surprising fact that one of the major commercial uses for this substance is in fishing lures. After finishing the book, I decided to investigate this phenomenon a bit deeper—and fell down what can only be described as a rabbit hole into another world.

A Life-Changing Encounter with Bulgarian Literature

By | July 12, 2022

Guest post by Dimitar Kambourov I embarked on the project of compiling and editing Bulgarian Literature as World Literature for various reasons. Some of them – like increasing the visibility of Bulgarian literature and provoking curiosity about it worldwide – were uninspiringly important. Others happened to be a continuation of my life-long endeavor to read… Read More »

Embracing Ecological Uncertainty through Fiction

By | May 19, 2022

Guest post by Marco Caracciolo The future has always been uncertain, but the ecological crisis presents us with an unprecedented degree of uncertainty in thinking about the future. Scientists who model the effects of global warming typically distinguish between pessimistic and optimistic scenarios. The gap between them is significant: concretely, it could mean the difference… Read More »

The Bloomsbury Handbook of Posthumanism two years later, by Mads Rosendahl Thomsen and Jacob Wamberg

By | April 26, 2022

The Bloomsbury Handbook of Posthumanism, edited by Mads Rosendahl Thomsen and Jacob Wamberg, consists of 32 articles organized in four sections: Paradigms, Ethics, Technology, and Aesthetics. It’s now available in paperback. The Bloomsbury Handbook of Posthumanism appears in paperback in April 2022. It was first published in 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic that is still… Read More »

The circumcision cure? Jordan Osserman on Circumcision on the Couch

By | April 20, 2022

Circumcision on the Couch, by Jordan Osserman, is out now How would you describe your book in one sentence? A book that uses psychoanalysis to better understand the history and opposed stances surrounding male circumcision; and that uses male circumcision to reassess the history and theory of psychoanalysis. What drew you to writing about this… Read More »