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Category Archives: Anglistisches

Electronic Literature as a Means to Overcome the Supremacy of the Author Function / Presentation at ELO2015

This is a screen recording of the Prezi, I used at ELO2015 (you’ll find the complete programme here, and there is a list of video recordings). As the Prezi isn’t self-explanatory, I did a quick voice-over.

Additional Sources

  • Photograph of Michel Foucault in 1975 from “Featured Author: Michel Foucault” (Books; The New York Times on the Web; 1999; Web).
  • TeCEU charts adapted from Heiko Zimmermann, Rekonfigurationen des textuellen Handlungsraums digitaler Literatur unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Autorschaft: Geschichte, theoretische Ansprüche und deren Wechselwirkungen in der digitalen Medienpraxis (Doctoral Thesis; U of Trier, 2012; Print).

Readings: Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring

As crude a weapon as the cave man’s club, the chemical barrage has been hurled against the fabric of life–a fabric on the one hand delicate and destructible, on the other miraculously tough and resilient, and capable of striking back in unexpected ways. These extraordinary capacities of life have been ignored by the practitioners of chemical control who have brought to their task no “high-minded orientation,” no humility before the vast forces with which they tamper.
The “control of nature” is a phrase conceived in arrogance, born of the Neanderthal age of biology and philosophy, when it was supposed that nature exists for the convenience of man. The concepts and practices of applied entomology for the most part date from that Stone Age of science. It is our alarming misfortune that so primitive a science has armed itself with the most modern and terrible weapons, and that in turning them against the insects it has also turned them against the earth. [Rachel Carson, Silent Spring (Boston: Mariner, 2002) 297.]

What a truly remarkable and relevant book this is! Not only because it started the eco movement and is a canonical classic but also because it is still relevant today as the tendencies and the state of mind of people today–the age of globalization and of genetic engineering–is similar to the state of mind of the proponents of chemical control in the 1940s, 50s and 60s, described at the end of Carson’s book (cf. above).

Quotation Marks vs. Prime Marks

Stylesheet Anglistik

Just found this in the official style sheet for contributions to the English Studies p-journal Anglistik. It’s fascinating.

Instead of …

Please use "quotation marks" instead of (typographic) “inverted commas” for all quotations…

… it should, of course, read …

Please use "double prime marks" (as you do to indicate inches or seconds) instead of “quotation marks” for all quotations…

T-Shirts: I’d Shave for Sherlock & I Don’t Shave for Sherlock Holmes

I'd shave for Sherlock T-Shirt
[Tshirt: “I’d shave for Sherlock”]


I don't shave for Sherlock Holmes T-Shirt
[Tshirt: “I don’t shave for Sherlock Holmes”]

Oh, and there are alternative colours and designs in the shop.

Readings: Fault Lines: An Anthology of New Writing from the MA in Creative Writing, University College Dublin 2013

Boyle, Joe, ed. Fault Lines: An Anthology of New Writing from the MA in Creative Writing (University College Dublin 2013). Dublin: Universal Publishing, 2013.

Where bought: Books Upstairs, just opposite Trinity’s main entrance.

Price: 10 €

Pages: 178.

Best Reads:

“The Switch” by Alan James Keogh (26-33)

It’s the story of a man unhappy with his life who switches bodies and life with another man, who is unhappy for other reasons. In the end, the hope put into the switch proves to be a fantasma as the personality, the self remains the same. (Keywords: body, identity, mind, fat, unhappiness, happiness, loneliness, gym, sports, science fiction, fantasy, heterodiegetic, internal focalization, unreliable narrator, short story)

“At Peace” by Alan James Keogh (34-37)

Conceptional piece/creation story of a statue of a man. Nice writing exercise. (Keywords: statue, body, identity, happiness, fantasy, autodiegetic, internal focalization, short story)

“The Inheritance” by Neil Bristow (112-20)

The story of Daniel, an escort who has paid sex with men who have to wear the reeking pyjamas of his late grandfather. The reader learns about Daniel and his punter Lev bit by bit with the indirect characterization misleading all the time. The story, although being full of surprises, ultimately casts quite a dreary light on the history and the present lives of everybody in the story. (Keywords: escort, gender/sex/identity, gay, sex, family, money, abuse, poverty, heterodiegetic, internal focalization, short story)

[UPDATE: Read Neil Bristow’s story on-line.]

“A White Dove” by Martin Sheridan (122-37)

Story showing the perspectives of a group of adolescent ravers on drugs. This is some sort history of pop culture of the 1990s. The distance in time from our perspective is made graspable by putting the main character not in the centre of Dublin, but making him travel there from the suburbs at the beginning of the story. (Keywords: Bildungsstory, drugs, music, dance, Dublin, youth, history, rave, techno, short story)

Aus der losen Reihe “I’m Old-Fashioned Because…”: Just Focus

…because I could easily live in the 19th century. This is how I see it:

And this is what I have missed:

Maybe it is the reading of late Victorian literature that has spoilt me in this respect. In terms of rules, the others are right, because generally, we double single consonant letters at the end of any base where the preceding vowel is spelled with a single letter and stressed. Here‘s a couple of examples, including the weird ‘parallelled’.

Whatthe Dickens’ Great Exterminations

0486415864-L GreatExterminations
[Original Dover Cover and Artwork (Mashup) by invisiblecity, first published on b3ta.]

Guest Lecture on William Wharton


A. S. Byatt on Not Lending Books

I have to confess that I no longer lend any book ever to anybody. Because it is exactly the book you most love that you feel you might lend to somebody. And it never comes back. It just never comes back. … There are so many books in my life that I couldn’t bear anyone to take away that I can’t quite think of it in my head what they might be because, in fact, the ones I most love, like, say, George Eliot’s Middlemarch, are also much the easiest to replace if somebody, by any chance, goes off with your copy. But when I was teaching at university, I used to, as it were, analyse the book in the front cover. So any copy I have ever taught, has got all my own, as it were, mapping and structural analysis in. And if anybody takes that even out of the shelves, I tremble with anxiety. And it’s true that the most honest people do walk off with books.

(A. S. Byatt, BBC World Book Club, March 2004)

Lieder gegen Thatcher?

Komplett pietätlose Menschen–oder solche, die ihr so ein paar Dinge nicht verziehen haben (rücksichtslose Privatisierungen, radikale Einschnitte bei den Sozialleistungen (Schulmilch), sinnlose Massenarbeitslosigkeit, sinnloser Krieg, Abwicklung des Nordens, die weitere Verarmung der Armen, die großere Bereicherung der Reichen, den Umgang mit Gegnern (Gewerkschaften, Nordirland))–können also heute auf kritische Weise Frau Thatcher gedenken. Mit Musik ist das ganz wunderbar möglich. Bei Buzzfeed gibt es seit Oktober 2011 eine Liste von “21 Incredibly Angry Songs About Margaret Thatcher“. Die meines Erachtens hörenswertesten sind folgende:

  • “Margaret On The Guillotine” / Morrissey
  • “Tramp The Dirt Down” / Elvis Costello
  • “Black Boys On Mopeds” / Sinéad O’Connor
  • “Thatcherites” / Billy Bragg
  • “The Day That Thatcher Dies” / Hefner
  • “Thatcher Fucked The Kids” / Frank Turner

Aber vielleicht haben diese Lieder bei oben genannten Menschen ja sogar eine kathartische Wirkung, so dass sie der alten Dame ein sympathisches “Rust in Peace” hinterherrufen können.

Alcalá de Henares

[“Alcalá de Henares”, 2012-10-06. This is a scaled down section of the image. Click picture to see the whole panorama.]

Alcalá seems to be very close here. However, it was a two hours walk from the place where I am staying as you cannot cross the river at the barrage of the Henares to access the hill/mountain. That’s my suggestion for city development: Build a bridge and an escalator from New Alcalá and the place will be teeming with people. Well, maybe not. There weren’t many people at the enchanting water front or the meadows of the flood plain. Oh, if you look carefully, you’ll notice the high-rise buildings on the horizon. This is Madrid.

Weekend (2011) Screening in Trier

If you’ve missed the beautiful film by Andrew Haigh last year or want to see Tom Cullen and Chris New again and again, there is another opportunity. For the slightly remote city of Trier, it will be the 1st public screening. Don’t hesitate. Come and watch…


5 JUNE 2012
7 p.m. (s.t.)


On a Friday night after hanging out with his straight mates, Russell heads out to a nightclub, alone and on the pull. Just before closing, he meets Glen. And so begins a weekend—in bars and bedrooms, getting drunk and taking drugs, telling stories and having sex—that will resonate throughout their lives.


Weitere Informationen:

Bye bye, digitaler Kabelanschluss! Oder: Wie mich die Synchronsprechermafia ab jetzt im Arsche lecken kann

Heute also habe ich meinen Receiver für den Empfang digitalen Fernsehens an Kabel Deutschland zurück geschickt. Jahre enttäuschter Fernsehhoffnungen für 16,90€ pro Monat enden damit.

Doch warum “enttäuscht”? Digitales Fernsehen über Kabel ermöglicht die Übertragung riesiger Datenmengen:

  • mehrere Audiospuren,
  • verschiedene Kamerawinkel,
  • ein hochauflösendes störungsfreies Bild,
  • Mehrwertdienste wie der EPG etc…

Damit verbunden ist auch die Möglichkeit neuer, aufregender, medienechter Formate und eine Differenzierung des Angebots hinsichtlich verschiedener Zielgruppen. Allerdings sind die beiden einzigen Dinge, die es für 16,90€ pro Monat tatsächlich gibt die Auflösung und der EPG. Ansonsten ist das Angebot so blöde wie auch schon zuvor. Keine neuen Fernsehformate, die sich der Technik ästhetisch bedienen würden. Nichts da mit einer sinnvollen Nutzung verschiedener Audiospuren. Ich hatte ja gedacht, dass man nun endlich auch fremdsprachige Filme/Serien/Shows/etc. im Originalton genießen kann. Die Unart des ungekonnten (weil stilistisch unbefriedigenden und inhaltlich falschen) Drüberquatschens a.k.a. Synchronisierens setzt sich im Digitalen fort. Systematisch werden ästhetische Medientexte entstellt und dann an den Kunden gegen Geld weitergegeben. (Das ist ein bisschen wie bei den DVD-Beilegern diverser Zeitschriften, die vorgeblich das Werk genialer Regisseure und talentierter Schauspieler enthalten, dann aber doch die Audiospur weglassen und irgendwelches Gequake von Martin Müller aus Mannheim und Klara Klein aus Kassel beigeben–nicht gegen die beiden persönlich.) Dabei wäre es ein Leichtes, statt des Stereotons und des 5.1-Tons der überquatschten Fassung einfach auch den Originalton zu übertragen. Das würde in der Lizenz für die zumeist eingekauften Serien und Spielfilme aus dem englischsprachigen Raum ein bisschen teurer. Aber dafür erfüllte man wenigstens ein sinnvolles der selbst verkündeten Heilsversprechen. Man muss sich einmal vor Augen halten, dass selbst Eigenproduziertes nicht vollständig weitergegeben wird (vgl. Arte).

Für 6,90€ weniger im Monat könnte man sich übrigens einen Proxy-Server in den USA oder dem Vereinten Königreich mieten und damit dann online Fernsehen aus dem englischsprachigen Raum sehen. Das wäre dann die Befreiung vom Diktat der Filmdrüberquatscher/Synchronsprechermafia. Endlich Trash als authentischer Trash mit den wahren Worten und den wahren Stimmen der Schauspieler. Das wäre ehrliches Fernsehen. Und wenn sich mal irgendwo ein Klötzchen bildete, dann könnte man lachen und an den alten digitalen Fernsehanschluss denken und wie sich da auch immer Klötzchen bildeten, wenn sich die Pumpe vom Kühlschrank abschaltete, oder wenn jemand auf das Kabel trat…

“My Wonderful Greengrocer” by Nigel Lawrence

Some time ago, I read my favourite poem by Nigel Lawrence into a microphone. Back then, I didn’t know the melody of this song (although I knew–and disliked–the Fünf-Minuten-Terrine already)…

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

You can read the text in highly recommendable compilation Firsthand: The New Anthology of Creative Writing from the University, ed. by Andrew Motion (Norwich: University of East Anglia, 2001) 246-47.

What’s Your Degree of Kevin Bacon?

The other day, Nebel recommended a funny, little, movie-related game that connects Oscar nominees with the idea of the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. (Basis of the game is, of course, the six degrees of separation.) As Nebel writes, there is a wonderful on-line service called The Oracle of Bacon which not only tells you how the game works but also how one actor is related to Kevin Bacon and what Bacon number a given actor has.

The object of the game is to start with any actor or actress who has been in a movie and connect them to Kevin Bacon in the smallest number of links possible. Two people are linked if they’ve been in a movie together. We do not consider links through television shows, made-for-tv movies, writers, producers, directors, etc. [from here]

What I found quite interesting is that my own Bacon number is not so bad after all. 🙂 Tell me, what is your Bacon number?

Newark Mayor Cory Booker on First- and Second Class Citizenship in the USA

[via Sebastian; Beware of the audio feedback at 3:22.]

Jay Brannan – “Beautifully”

Sehr schön meta, Brannans Video zu “Beautifully“: Musikvideodreh im Musikvideo, Brannan in verschiedenen Rollen, Überzeichnung von Setting und Plot… Fehlt eigentlich nur, dass jemand Star-Spangled Banner anstimmt. (Sorry.)

This is What Wikipedia’s Protest against SOPA and PIPA Looked Like / 2012-01-18

[This is a post for historians of the future, when Wikipedia, after it will have been forbidden entirely (like all major “anarchistic” publications of the early years of the State-Grid-Halliburton-Google-Web (called World-Wide-Web back then)), will also have been systematically purged from all archives.]

Users at the time were not fully aware of the threatening danger posed by a legislation influenced by state politics/old-ecomnomy oligarchs/criminal syndicates to free speech, network neutrality, accessibility of internet services, … (plus the once in a century chance to change the whole planet for the better), worldwide. Therefore, they, instead of joining the protest, rather switched off JavaScript on and complained about those political nerds/idiots. Could they actually be so naive to believe that they could possibly change anything?

Book Cover of the Future…

… or just some gimmicky idea whose effect on the reader will wear off quickly? [via, more]

American Christmas Music

In case you don’t know the songs listed as part of the annual reincarnation of the baby boomers’ perfect Christmas, have a listen. This is all from the 1950s.