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How to Talk to Punks at Parties

Published: Jul 3rd, 2018

My favorite movie so far this summer? How to Talk to Girls at Parties, released in the U.S. in late May. I teach a “PostPunk Cultures” course on the British… Read More

Looking at Children in News Photographs

Looking at Children in News Photographs

Published: Jun 23rd, 2018

The second time this news photograph appeared on my screen, I began to look at it more closely. You’ve likely seen this handout photo from the U.S. Department of Health… Read More

Frosted Commencement Concoction

Frosted Commencement Concoction

Published: May 15th, 2018

It’s that graduation saturation time of year again when our students, family members, and friends commence. They launch; they embark; they set forth; they begin anew. Many will receive a commencement greeting… Read More

Casting Hearts: The Yeats Effect

Casting Hearts: The Yeats Effect

Published: Feb 14th, 2018

If hearts are trump for German minimalist band Trio, hearts were more complicated for Irish poet W. B. Yeats. Dolores O’Riordan captured some of that complexity in her lyrics to… Read More

On Greek Hospitality, Mythic Incarnations & Everyday Life

On Greek Hospitality, Mythic Incarnations & Everyday Life

Published: Dec 24th, 2017

It’s Christmas Eve and I’ve just returned from Greece, where I spoke at the conference Politics of Space and the Humanities in Thessaloniki. It was my first encounter with that… Read More

Sonic Southern Gothic, Ghosts & Graveyards

Sonic Southern Gothic, Ghosts & Graveyards

Published: Oct 31st, 2017

It’s Halloween. FEST 16 just painted my downtown black with underground musicians and punk rock fans. And I’m 200 miles south of Flannery O’Connor’s childhood home. So I’m thinking about… Read More

Clues about Dementia Fiction

Clues about Dementia Fiction

Published: Oct 10th, 2017

This week I read a story from a last month’s New Yorker at 30,000 feet – Edwidge Danticat’s remarkable “Sunrise, Sunset.” Shuttling from one airport to another, crossing state lines,… Read More

Playboy and Postwar Masculinities

Playboy and Postwar Masculinities

Published: Sep 28th, 2017

With Hugh Hefner’s passing, the sexual revolutions of the 1950s and 60s are trending again in the news. The fundamental revolution of Playboy wasn’t its nude female models, but its… Read More

The Power Line-Gang

The Power Line-Gang

Published: Sep 14th, 2017

I don’t hail from Robert Frost‘s neck of the woods. But here in my North Central Florida woods after Hurricane Irma, I’m thinking about Frost’s poem “The Line-Gang” from his… Read More

Kooped Up with Flannery O’Connor

Kooped Up with Flannery O’Connor

Published: Aug 3rd, 2017

Flannery O’Connor departed from this earthly life 92 years ago today. I find myself far more interested in her arrivals. FOC is arriving in my inbox an awful lot these… Read More