Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘holidays

Catching Up on My Open Tabs After an Incredibly Slow News Week in Which Nothing World-Historically Bonkers Happened

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* CFP: And Now for Something Completely Different: Critical Approaches to Monty Python.

* CFP: The Films of Wes Anderson.

* Three on Dylan, Nobel Laureate. The Guardian reports.

After much consideration my position on this event is that I’m formally opposed, but nonetheless personally delighted.

* Barack Obama for first president of the Federation.

* Le Guin in the Post, the Nation, and the New Yorker.

* PKD and the Problem of 2-3-74.

* An adjuncting career, by the numbers.

Idiots Who Run Harvard Let Their Low-Wage Workers Go On Strike.

* 4 Professors Involved in Philosophy Brawl Find Feces in Their Mail.

With Campus Carry in Place, Some Texas Grad Students Make Bars Their Offices.

* Why a Controversial Palestinian History Class at Berkeley Was Cancelled, Then Reinstated.

* I make a brief appearance at the end of this CBS58 story on Marquette’s incredible Tolkien collection. I also pop up in this review of the first few episodes of Westworld.

* The Trouble with Thanksgiving.

This schedule creates a natural mid-semester break. And if adopted soon, that break would occur next week. Let’s get to work. I don’t think it’s too late.

* Arrested Development Season Five (not really). Women Are Defeating Donald Trump. All of Donald Trump’s Accusers: A Timeline of Every Alleged Grope and Assault. Gerrymandering helped Republicans take control of Congress, but now it’s tearing them apart over Trump. A Trump collapse could give Democrats back the House. Here’s the math. Inside the Bunker. Inside the Meltdown. How One 19-Year-Old Illinois Man Is Distorting National Polling Averages. Trump, the GOP, and the Fall. Let’s never forget what a terrifying thing we almost did. Your Surgeon Is Probably a Republican, Your Psychiatrist Probably a Democrat. I guess I need a new surgeon. If professors made $500k/year, would they be Republicans? U.S. government officially accuses Russia of hacking campaign to interfere with elections. The Evan McMullin Century. A GOP strategist explains why the Republican Party is about to break in two. Even the Humane Society. Teach the controversy. Thank you for your idea about a political thriller but unfortunately we find the plot preposterous. Michelle Obama for President. And because we’re all still asking: What Happens If Trump Drops Out?

* Citizens United, all class.

* Eugenics in America.

As a national prison strike enters its second month, the Department of Justice says it will investigate conditions in Alabama prisons. And some corrections officers are expressing support.

Louisiana isn’t letting immigrants get married.

New Jersey Transit, a Cautionary Tale of Neglect.

“We’d at least like to have it said of us that we tried”: Marvel and the civil rights movement.

How Rock and Roll Became White.

* Atlanta’s lost Afrofuture.

* Brutalism is back.

* “When her best friend died, she rebuilt him using artificial intelligence.”

* Department of Precrime, CIA edition.

* The search for a true blue M&M.

* Whatever this is for, I am so completely in.

* Meanwhile, the Fantastic Beasts expansion of the Harry Potter franchise will top out at an economical and reasonable five films.

* Star Trek explained by epic poetry.

* The four types of board games.

Golden Girls Action Figures Are Here.

* Life with migraines.

* I was pregnant, and then I wasn’t.

* Generation Adderall.

* Poet at work.

* The end of Devin Faraci and the end of The Canon podcast (for now). There’s more at the Mary Sue.

* Huge, if true: Tech billionaires convinced we live in the Matrix are secretly funding scientists to help break us out of it.

And on the subject of deranged tech madmen: Simpsons did it.

Liquid assets: how the business of bottled water went mad.

The reaction that would give us clean fossil fuels forever.

The coming fight over “nonlethal neuroweapons.”

What’s the Longest Humans Can Live? 115 Years, New Study Says. Challenge accepted.

* Now, I may have to move first.

* The kids are all right: Only 1 in 5 Millennials Have Ever Tried a Big Mac.

* On Delany’s Dark Reflections.

* App of the week: Really Bad Chess.

* The Perils of Becoming a Meme.

* The LEGO Yellow Submarine.

* Finally my condition has a name.

* And I told you, Mom: Science Says the First Born Child Is the Most Intelligent.

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Written by gerrycanavan

October 14, 2016 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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No, YOU’RE Procrastinating: Wednesday Afternoon Links!

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r_16-25-00_MZ7aAUNWN5* We just landed a spacecraft on a comet for the first time. Here’s why it matters.

* Capitalism and the space program.

This is no accident. The same contradictions that have divided human aspiration from human achievement, producing growing hunger and want in a world with the technological means to solve both, paralyze the reach of humanity into the solar system. The task to reclaim space as humanity’s birthright is inseparable from that necessary to oppose war and conquer want and deprivation. In other words, it is the fight for socialism.

* Theory and Event‘s special supplement on Ferguson and “Disposable Lives.”

* Interview with Sherryl Vint on science fiction and biopolitics.

* College Athletes of the World, Unite. Ladies and gentlemen, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

* This is a great TNI interview on California, “the carceral state.”

If we believe that the prison system is broken, then we must also believe in its ability to be fixed. Here we can see how the PIC keeps functioning through the rehearsal of the “broken system” narrative. As Angela Davis and many others have argued, it is precisely through reform that the ­prison-industrial complex expands. We can see the materiality of this expansion through the mandatory increase in police in schools through Proposition 47.

* Wisconsin woman said this week that she may have to file for bankruptcy because she was taken to an out-of-network hospital after having a heart attack, but now she owes more than $50,000 more than she would have if she had been taken to a hospital less than half a mile away.

* I was fired for sending a letter to the League for Innovation in the Community College, criticizing the Moraine Valley Community College administration for treating adjunct faculty as a “disposable resource” and the “chilling effect” on adjuncts who lack job security.

* Can White Teachers Be Taught How to Teach Our Children?

* America’s workers steal more than its shoplifters.

* Now we see the violence inherent in the system: Man Points Rifle At Teen Daughter After Game Of Battleship Goes Bad.

* And again. To limit divorce settlement, conservative billionaire argues that he got rich through luck.

* And again. Maryland School Board Asked To Recognize Muslim Holy Day, Strikes References To All Religious Holidays Instead.

* Pretty good fan pitch for what The Force Awakens should be about.

* The Handmaid’s Tale was a documentary: Domino’s founder turning FL town into unconstitutional contraception-free ‘Catholic enclave.’

* Bruuuuuuuuuuuuce.

* And Christoph Waltz has been stealing my bit.

gerrycanavan.com Is Pleased to Offer This Sunday Reading Experience

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* The schedule for the final third of my Cultural Preservation course. This has been one of the best teaching experiences I’ve ever had; I’m hoping things go as well next spring when I do it all again.

* Starting out with two strikes with this guy and he hasn’t even found out where I work yet.

The institution of the faculty wife is alive and well in academic culture. She’s an adjunct.

* Nietzsche was right: it turns out without forgetting it is quite impossible to live at all.

* “It seems to me that St. Patrick’s Day expresses the fundamental nihilism at the heart of American life.”

* Elsewhere in the American nihilism files: NASA study concludes it’s not just you, we really are doomed.

* Meanwhile, we can’t even agree on the incredible, undeniable, world-historical usefulness of vaccines. One map sums up the damage caused by the anti-vaccination movement.

* Surely we’ll start the school day later, when every bit of science backs this up… Oh.

* Unreal: Malaysian investigators conclude missing airliner hijacked. Could the Passengers Still Be Alive?

* Don’t be evil: Google’s anti-copyright stance is just a way to devalue content.

* There’s no escape from the corporate-NSA surveillance network.

* Five Cops Beat Innocent, Unarmed Father to Death Outside Cinema.

* No one could have predicted a completely unregulated peer-to-peer hotel network would lead to bad outcomes. Next up: Hey, Uber, your unregulated taxi was just some random creep’s unsafe car!

* Being Terry Gilliam.

* For the true believers: A Brief History of the Quidditch World Cup.

It’s not Mortal Kombat we should fear; it’s Candy Crush Saga and FarmVille.

50,000 Activists Demand Sexual Assault Reform At Dartmouth After Student Publishes A ‘Rape Guide.’

* On the spell-binding catastrophic collapse of the Juan Pablo season of The Bachelor.

* Thinking big: “I very well may be president of the United States in 2020, but for right now I am supporting some pro-White candidates from the American Freedom Party,” he said.

* If we make the world a paradise where everyone is immortal, will we still be able to have all these awesome jails? Aeon Magazine reports.

Car Dealers Are Terrified of Tesla’s Plan to Eliminate Oil Changes.

* Kim Stanley Robinson is all over the ASU “Thoughtful Optimism” project.

As of 2010-2011, the most recent year with available data, recent humanities and liberal arts majors had 9 percent unemployment. That’s right about on par with students in computer and math fields (9.1 percent), psychology and social work (8.8 percent), and the social sciences (10.3 percent). And it’s just a bit above the average across all majors of 7.9 percent. The larger problem, as always, is that there’s still not enough work for young people post-recession.

Pussy Riot launches a prisoners rights center in Russia, demands freedom in Wisconsin.

* Promisingly specific: Projecting ‘Grand Budapest Hotel’ in Theaters Requires Special Instructions.

* Game of the Weekend: 2048, an addictive simplification of Threes!, in your browser.

* And good news for fans of medieval maps.

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‘Meanwhile, the Holiday-Industrial Complex Has Expanded to Fill the Entire Last Third of the Year’

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Whereas previously Thanksgiving was a kind of warm-up for Christmas, inaugurating the holiday season, we now have to contend with a new abomination: Halloween as a holiday for adults.

The regressive childishness that the adult Halloween encourages serves to reinforce the sentimentality surrounding Christmas, while the emphasis on “sexy” costumes reproduces one of the most oppressive aspects of Christmas, namely, the degree to which it totally and utterly sucks to be single during the holiday season. For most of the year, one has a normal reaction to a state of singleness — perhaps it’s a welcome break, perhaps it leaves one feeling lonely, etc. — but during the holiday season, one invariably feels like a failure. The sexualization of a childhood activity lays the groundwork for these feelings by reinforcing the link — which has always struck me as strange and creepy — between the childhood nostalgia of Christmas and the imperative of romance.

The inclusion of Halloween into the holiday season also brings the oppressive spectacle of New Year’s Eve more sharply into focus. Not only are we obligated to have fun on that night — ensuring that we won’t — but the hapless single person gets one last kick in the teeth, as they ring in the New Year with no one to kiss.

Building off Natalie Cecire’s piece on Scroogism and reproductive futurity that I linked yesterday, Adam Kotsko has some thoughts on the expansion of the Holiday-Industrial Complex:

One can already see efforts to bring Thanksgiving more fully within the orbit of the holiday-industrial complex. The creation of a new quasi-holiday known as “Black Friday” out of what was formerly known as “the day after Thanksgiving” certainly helps here, but even more insidious is the sense that the “thanks” we should be “giving” is owed to “the troops” — integrating nationalism more firmly into the celebrations. This element of nationalism is obviously also present in the summer “eating” holidays that otherwise share many of the desirable attributes I’ve pointed out in Thanksgiving, but the gesture toward the troops is often superficial. The advantage of eliciting such feelings on Thanksgiving is that it is folded into the totalitarian atmosphere of the holidays, where sentiments must be sincerely present or, at worst, their absence must be explicitly marked by replacement feelings of guilt.

One should probably expect troop-focused piety to increasingly characterize Thanksgiving in coming years, and it is likely that “Black Friday” shopping will also come to encroach more and more on Thanksgiving Day itself — I wouldn’t be surprised if we even learned that shopping is a great way to work off those Thanksgiving calories. Those of us seeking low-key holidays with simple and clear obligations will have to wait until summertime, when we can enjoy our grilled meats and fireworks without feeling guilty for not loving our family enough or not having found true love or not having enough fun.