Monthly Archives: October 2014

Why we should study the studying of Beyoncé studies.

A reputable American University recently announced that it would be offering a course in ‘Beyoncé Studies.’ The media reaction, as expected, has been to question the legitimacy of such topics for academic discussion and to put the ‘quality’ of these degrees in question. This isn’t a unique course in this regard by any means: in […]

Reading the British Passport

In 2010 the British Passport was redesigned. While the front cover retained its familiar burgundy colour and UK coat of arms, the interior pages saw a subtle but significant change. Whereas the previous version had identical patterns on each page, with a simple watermark featuring the four national plants of the United Kingdom (rose, thistle, […]

The Politics of the Man Booker Prize

It upsets people. I say I don’t need to read whatever the latest bilge from Martin Amis or Ian McEwan or Hilary Mantel is. What do I need with racism, reason or the forelock-tugging worship of dead aristocrats? But how, my interlocutors ask, can I be so confident of the worthlessness of these works? Only […]

Gone Girl and the Madness of the Symbolic Order

The controversy surrounding David Fincher’s film version of Gillian Flynn’s novel Gone Girl has been saturating the news of late; indeed, a mini mass hysteria has risen up around it. The knee-jerkiness of reactions is exemplified in Joan Smith’s absurd article in the Guardian, claiming in its header that Ben Affleck(!) (almost solely, with begrudging […]

On the ‘Freudian’ Cameron

So, does David Cameron really ‘resent’ the poor, as per his allegedly ‘Freudian’ slip during Wednesday’s address to the Conservative Party Conference? Did his tongue lap into his unconscious and return with what he really thinks, which ‘we’ all ‘knew’ in the first place? Is this, at last, confirmation that the Bullingdon Club really is […]