Wednesday, May 06, 2015
Tuesday, May 05, 2015
With the semester almost over, I am plunging back into my own projects, which at present include a conference on Joss Whedon, a forthcoming keynote on Twin Peaks, future courses on Mad Men and superhero movies, and a book on Wallace Stevens, Benjamin Whorf, and Charles Ives.
Monday, May 04, 2015
Here is Peggy's arrival at McCann-Erickson.
And here is John Teti's wonderful description of the moment (on Onion TV Club).
Fittingly, then, a rebellious spirit emanates from Peggy when she finally arrives at her McCann office. The Peggy of a few days ago, the deferential supplicant with a flower basket meant for a secretary, is nowhere to be found. Instead, we have Peggy’s latest, boldest revision of herself. A cigarette dangles from her lips, and sunglasses obscure her gaze. She pulls it all off with an arresting swagger, with the octopus woodcut under her arm to signal that her days of making men feel at ease are over. If the idea of Sterling Cooper was to be something greater than “advertising,” Peggy intends to carry that ethos forward. The agency, in more than one sense of the word, lives on through her.
Sunday, May 03, 2015
Delighted to discover that this powerful film from one of my oldest friends Allison Graham and former colleagues at U. Memphis David Appleby and Steve Ross is available through MTSU's Walker Library. Also available here.
I have written on this blog before about my pseudo-genuine proposal that MTSU make its mascot the Tennessee Fainting Goat.
I learned this morning on NPR that the mascot of Washington's Evergreen State College is the very large clam know as a Geoduck.
What might have been! A new Big Three of ridiculous collegeiate mascots: Geoducks, Banana Slugs, and the MTSU Fainting Goats.
I chose the term “faith-deranged” with care. I meant it literally, lest there be any doubt that I intended to be merely incendiary. Derangement is clearly rampant across large swathes of America. Citizens of one of the most technologically advanced nations on earth who opt, of their own volition, to believe in a magic book negated by science and peppered with all manner of bilious behests and misanthropic myths cannot be esteemed to be thinking sanely. Given the extreme nature of the delusions of these citizens and the resulting behavior – for example, petitions whispered to an invisible celestial tyrant with the goal of securing favorable outcomes, otherwise known as prayer, and hallucinated responses from said invisible tyrant – only one conclusion presents itself: faith has disrupted their mental faculties and is producing symptoms that, were they not sheltered under the adjective “religious,” would qualify as pathological.
Friday, May 01, 2015
Two MTSU faculty, Drs. Linda Badley and David Lavery, will keynote at international conferences this month.
Badley will be a keynote speaker at the 2nd Ekphrasis Conference in Cinema and Visual Culture on “Provocation as Art: Scandal, Shock and Sexuality,” 28-29 May, 2015, in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Her presentation, “‘Fill All My Holes’: Nymph()maniac’s Sadeian Discourse,” will focus on Lars von Trier’s exploration of pornography as a cinematic language in his most recent film, which also culminates the director’s long-term fascination with the Marquis de Sade.
The conference is organized by the Babeș-Bolyai University’s Faculty of Theater and Television, Department of Cinema and Media.
Lavery will be journeying to Manchester in the UK, where he will be a keynoter at the University of Salford's "'I’ll See You Again in 25 Years': The Return of Twin Peaks and Generations of Cult TV" (May 21-22).
His presentation is entitled "Twin Peaks’ Vision (‘as distinguished from a dream which is mere sorting and cataloging of the day's events by the subconscious, . . . fresh and clear as a mountain stream—the mind revealing itself to itself’) and the Discovery of Television Creativity." It will consider David Lynch and Mark Frost’s series as a supremely influential text in the advent of television’s second—and third—“golden ages” and track how and why Peaks’ memes propagated so widely and pervasively throughout the last two decades of quality television.