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Poetry Commentary: “Scale” by Helen Mort

For Christmas I recieved a copy of Helen Mort's poetry collection No Map Could Show Them (published by Random House, 2016). I hadn't come across Mort's work before, but having had a chance to dig into the text this month, I have to say, she is an extraordinary talent. No Map Could Show Them is… Continue reading Poetry Commentary: “Scale” by Helen Mort

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The meaning of matching media: Reviewing writing vs reviewing dance

At the start of November, I was fortunate enough to be treated by friends, who took me out to the theatre to watch a contemporary dance performance. The two pieces we saw were beautifully performed, engaging and thought-provoking. Afterwards, we talked about how the dancing made us feel and what it made us think about.… Continue reading The meaning of matching media: Reviewing writing vs reviewing dance

Digital Humanities

Using Wikipedia as a source: some pros, cons and comments

When I was in school, we were frequently told not to use Wikipedia as a source for homework or projects.  It was unreliable, teachers said, because anyone could edit it.  Five to ten years on and the professor on my MA course is advising the class to check out the Wikipedia articles on the theorists… Continue reading Using Wikipedia as a source: some pros, cons and comments

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Titles with near-future dates: how soon is too soon to mention? (Yes, this post contains traces of Orwell)

I'm reading The 2020 Commission Report on the North Korean Nuclear Attacks Against the United States, by Dr Jeffrey Lewis, which was published in August 2018.  As the title suggests, it's set in the year 2020, and the book is a work of speculative fiction which implies through its paratext and style that it is… Continue reading Titles with near-future dates: how soon is too soon to mention? (Yes, this post contains traces of Orwell)

Exploring literary terms

Malapropisms: in which I disgust the improv abuse of words

In my latest read, there's a character who frequently muddles his words, and it got me thinking about how the muddling of words can sometimes be used as a literary device.  There are various forms of this, but I'll concentrate on malapropisms here. "malapropism, (n). The ludicrous misuse of words, esp. in mistaking a word… Continue reading Malapropisms: in which I disgust the improv abuse of words

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What, when, and where is art? Banksy’s shredded picture and the ontology of artworks

Earlier this month, mysterious artist Banksy sent the art world into a spin when his picture "Girl with Balloon" was shredded by its own frame, moments after being sold at auction for over £1m.  The incident was covered widely in the press (at least in the UK), so I won't give the full story here. … Continue reading What, when, and where is art? Banksy’s shredded picture and the ontology of artworks