Reads
My Dog is Dead

My Dog is Dead

“Mom, imagine Fabi is lost somewhere in the city. He is hiding near the dumpster, and a policeman named Jeremy finds him and takes him to the station. “So, where do you live? Mr.… Fabi, your name tag says! Let’s try and call your mom. Sit here and wait, and don’t make any prank calls.” More»

Reich of the Living Dead

Reich of the Living Dead

A former academic colleague used to complain that people who wrote about Heidegger invariably ended up writing like Heidegger. This is not entirely fair to Heidegger scholars (although not entirely unfair either). Peter Trawny’s recently translated Freedom to Fail: Heidegger’s Anarchy affirms the legitimacy of both complaints. This is, in fact, the first of Trawny’s works that I have read in translation and, oddly enough, it is the one that I feel like I understand the least. More»

Liberalism and Its Discontents

Liberalism and Its Discontents

Tzvetan Todorov’s The Inner Enemies of Democracy wants to use the accumulated wisdom of the West to address a modern problem. In this particular case, the problem is that, although democracy has become the  lingua franca of the West, there are dynamics internal to it that have the potential to vitiate the progress that has been made towards more humanistic social orders. More»

Letter to an ISIS Militant, Part II

Letter to an ISIS Militant, Part II

Camus’ writings deal intensely with the problem of death; suicide in Myth of Sisyphus (1943), and the death of others in L’Homme Révolté (1951). For Camus, the issue is that humans have no direct experience of death, but it remains their only certainty, and shapes their existence. More»

Victory Over the Thugs

Victory Over the Thugs

Of all the notable literary events of the past year, perhaps none was so important as the release of the complete works of Primo Levi. The three volumes of this edition make available in one place a wealth of Levi’s novels, his shorter fictional and occasional pieces, as well as his more general autobiographical writings such as The Periodic Table. More»

Anterograde Amnesia

Anterograde Amnesia

Mark Fisher’s Capitalist Realism constitutes one of the clearest statements of what people for better or worse like to call the ‘postmodern condition’. On Fisher’s account, culture in the late capitalist world exists in a condition of stasis, having lost the impulsion to novelty that Fisher imputes to systemic competition with actually existing socialism. More»

Prophecy and Social Organising

Prophecy and Social Organising

Human social organising is something necessary. The philosophers expressed this fact by saying: “Man is ‘political’ by nature.” That is, he cannot do without the social organisation for which the philosophers use the technical term “town” (polis). This is what civilisation means.  More»

Unacceptably Free

Unacceptably Free

There is something problematic about collapsing all non-cis gendered and trans people together, as a single phenomenon. Please don’t misunderstand me. I believe strongly in solidarity, people fighting alongside each other and advocating for each other. Not just splitting into groups, and fighting only for what personally affects us in our own lives. More»

Send in the Hacks

Send in the Hacks

Not one Democratic primary has taken place, and already the charges of sexism are being lobbed at Senator Bernie Sanders, who, despite being an outsider without a horde of corporate donors, has been able to narrow the polling gap with the frontrunner, Hillary Clinton. More»

Jihad Pigs, Part IV

Jihad Pigs, Part IV

S.K. Malik’s Quranic Concept of War illustrates that during the late 1970s, the Pakistani military began adopting hardline conceptions of jihad in order to resolve a major crisis in national morale. This allowed the military to rehabilitate itself following a series of major defeats, and move against leftist and secessionist factions in the country. More»

The Future is Not What it Used to Be

The Future is Not What it Used to Be

Few writers in the Anglosphere have written about the situation of modern capitalism, and its cultural consequences, than British scholar Mark Fisher. Whether in books, in Wired and New Statesman, or on his own blog, Fisher prose cuts to the chase, capturing subtle nuances without feeling the need to drown the reader in verbiage. More»

Jihad Pigs, Part III

Jihad Pigs, Part III

Brigadier General S.K. Malik expounds on the purpose of warfare in Qu’ranic Concept of War by inverting the arguments of Carl von Clausewitz. Clausewitz famously argued that war is a “continuation of policy by other means,” while Malik believed that the ethical bases of war forces policy to define and determine its specific parameters. More»