Speaking with the Dead: An Ethnography of Extrahuman Experience

FORTHCOMING Spring 2024

If you tried speaking with a dead person and they gave you a clear response, how would you react? Mediums develop their minds and bodies to communicate messages from the deceased to their living loved ones, and in Speaking with the Dead, anthropologist Matt Tomlinson describes his experiences training as a medium with a Spiritualist[…]

Styling Sagaciousness: Oh Great No!

Published: 09/01/2022

During the Paris pandemic confinement period of 2020, with the dread of viral death in the air, artist Joseph Nechvatal finished his second book of poetry, titled Styling Sagaciousness: Oh Great No! The mythopoeic mélange of Styling Sagaciousness is intended as a complicated forensic fairy-tale, suitable for Nô theater, which keeps slipping in and out[…]

Escape Philosophy

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Published: 07/14/2022

We are all perpetually holding ourselves together. Our breath, our blood, our food, our spit, our shit, our thoughts, our attention—all tightly held, all the time. Then at death we let it all out, oozing at once into the earth and gasping at last into the ether. The physical body has often been seen as[…]

The Humid Condition: (More) Overheated Observations

Published: 03/05/2020

A Zibaldone for the Twitter age. An Anatomy of Mischievous Melancholy. A Commonplace book of uncommon opinions An avalanche of apposite apercus. An inventory of inappropriate malaproprisms. Buying raw milk from the back of a truck in Manhattan is a bit like a drug deal in Breaking Bad, except instead of guns and gangsters you[…]

Dark Chaucer: An Assortment

Published: 12/23/2012

Read Marion Turner’s review of Dark Chaucer in Studies in the Age of Chaucer HERE. Although widely beloved for its playfulness and comic sensibility, Chaucer’s poetry is also subtly shot through with dark moments that open into obscure and irresolvably haunting vistas, passages into which one might fall head-first and never reach the abyssal bottom,[…]

Writing Death

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Published: 06/06/2011

Writing Death opens a meditation on the possibility of mourning; of whether there is a subject, or even object, that one mourns—of whether one is mourning, can only mourn, the very impossibility of mourning itself. The manuscript is framed by two attempts at mourning—Avital Ronell’s “The Tactlessness of an Unending Fadeout” and Jeremy Fernando’s “adieu.” In-between—for[…]