P       RNCU   REPO   ODER       E            P O S T M O D E R N
P  TMOD RNCU  U EP S  ODER  ULTU E               C U L T U R E
P  TMODERNCU  UREPOS  ODER  ULTU E          an electronic journal
P  TMODERNCU  UREPOS  ODER       E           of interdisciplinary
Volume 14, Number 2 (January, 2004)              ISSN: 1053-1920

Editors:                            Lisa Brawley
                                    James F. English

Editors Emeritus:                   Eyal Amiran
                                    Stuart Moulthrop
                                    John Unsworth

Review Editor:                      Paula Geyh

Managing Editor:                    Claire Chantell

Editorial Board:                                           

     James Berger                   Patrick O'Donnell
     Heesok Chang                   Elaine Orr
     Wendy Hui Kyong Chun           Bob Perelman
     Ashley Dawson                  Marjorie Perloff
     J. Yellowlees Douglas          Fred Pfeil
     Johanna Drucker                Peggy Phelan
     Diane Gromala                  Arkady Plotnitsky
     Graham Hammill                 Judith Roof
     Terry Harpold                  Susan Schultz
     David Herman                   William Spanos
     Marcia Ian                     Katie Stewart
     Michael Joyce                  Allucquere Roseanne Stone
     Matthew Kirschenbaum           Gary Lee Stonum
     Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett  Rei Terada
     Neil Larsen                    Darren Tofts 
     Brian Massumi                  Paul Trembath
     Jerome McGann                  Greg Ulmer
     Adrian Miles                   
     Jim Morrison
     Larysa Mykyta                                          
    David Banash, From Advertising to the Avant-Garde: 
    Rethinking the Invention of Collage
    Eric Hayot and Edward Wesp, Reading Game/Text: 
    EverQuest, Alienation, and Digital Communities
    Brian Reed, "Eden or Ebb of the Sea": Susan Howe's 
    Word Squares and Postlinear Poetics
                          Hypertext Essay
    George Dillon, Montage/Critique: Another Way of 
    Writing Social History
                          Review Essay 
    Arkady Plotnitsky, Evolution and Contingency. A 
    review of Stephen J. Gould, _The Structure of 
    Evolutionary Theory_. Cambridge, MA: Harvard 
    UP, 2002.
    Jeffrey T. Nealon, Pain-in-the-ass Democracy. A 
    review of John McGowan, _Democracy's Children: 
    Intellectuals and the Rise of Cultural Politics_. 
    Ithaca, NY: Cornell UP, 2002.
    Stuart J. Murray, Not Just a Matter of the 
    Internet. A review of Mark Poster, _What's the 
    Matter with the Internet?_ Electronic Mediations, 
    Vol. 3. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota P, 2001.
    Hillary L. Chute, Irigaray's Erotic Ontology. A
    review of Luce Irigaray, _Between East and West: 
    From Singularity to Community_. New York: 
    Columbia UP, 2002. 
    Daniel Worden, Killing the Big Other. A review of 
    Slavoj Zizek, _The Puppet and the Dwarf: The Perverse 
    Core of Christianity_. Cambridge: MIT P, 2003.
    Charles Sheaffer, Exposition in Ruins. A review of 
    Gregory Ulmer, _Internet Invention_. New York: 
    Pearson, 2003. 
                      Notices (HTML Version Only)
                      Notes on Contributors
    David Banash, From Advertising to the Avant-Garde: 
    Rethinking the Invention of Collage
        o Abstract: This essay offers an alternative 
    analysis of the invention of collage, arguing that 
    this technique, most typically viewed as avant-garde 
    and oppositional, is in fact preceded by and rooted 
    in practices pioneered by early mass media 
    advertisers. Beginning with an examination of the 
    orthodox versions of the invention of collage told by 
    art historians, the essay notes how these accounts 
    exclude the role of popular and commercial culture. It 
    then develops a detailed analysis of advertising 
    techniques preceding and informing fine art's invention 
    of collage, suggesting that techniques of critique were 
    first made available through commercial sources. Turning 
    to the work of William S. Burroughs, the essay considers 
    his analysis of mass media as both a source of pernicious 
    social control and a force for critique and social 
    transformation. The essay concludes that the role of 
    collage in both advertising and critical art must be 
    rethought through a dialectic which accounts for 
    collage's origins in the needs of advertising and its 
    promise as a technique for radical critique.--db
    George Dillon, Montage/Critique: Another Way of 
    Writing Social History
        o Abstract: In the course of the last 100 years, 
    scholars have repeatedly envisioned a new form of social 
    and cultural critique: one in which the visual would play 
    a much larger role and in which juxtaposition and montage 
    would replace linear and continuous development. We now 
    see Walter Benjamin's Arcades Project as articulating
    issues that concerned John Berger and Jean Mohr in the 
    1960s and 1970s and that now take on new urgency in relation 
    to digital imagery and e-text: these increase the 
    possibilities of montage and juxtaposition by hypertext 
    links, as can be seen in the online works of Giles Peaker, 
    Geoff Broadway, Robin Michal, and Russet Lederman. But 
    images and montage do not necessarily produce critique, and 
    Benjamin's "method of juxtaposition" is not quite so 
    portable as Michal suggests. What is lacking with Michal 
    are the multiple perspectives from and on history that we 
    find in works by Broadway and Esther Parada. --gld 
    Eric Hayot and Edward Wesp, Reading Game/Text: 
    EverQuest, Alienation, and Digital Communities 
        o Abstract: The essay begins with a review of a recent 
    court case ruling that video games do not constitute 
    "speech" in order to develop arguments about the 
    relationship between "media" (which communicate) and 
    "activities" (in which, U.S. District Court Judge Stephen 
    Limbaugh argues, any communication is "purely 
    inconsequential"). Focusing on the online role-playing game 
    EverQuest, the essay contends that the combination of 
    game-like structures in EverQuest with certain kinds of 
    expressions (spoken by "virtual" bodies) means that the 
    form cannot be read exclusively either as literature or 
    as a game. Drawing on Benedict Anderson's Imagined 
    Communities, the essay attempts to discern those structural 
    elements in EverQuest that might be understood as shaping 
    or creating large-scale forms of experience (much as the 
    novel, as Anderson argues, gave its readers a new experience 
    of simultaneous time that allowed them to identify in 
    national terms with people they could never hope to know 
    or meet). The essay intends this broadly structural 
    hermeneutic to illustrate the manner in which those things 
    that make EverQuest a game establish the terms by which it 
    participates in culture. Its reading of the game's structure 
    (which is expressed, finally, in the code that makes the 
    software) is designed to map out the expression of that 
    software's intelligence as it interacts with the individual 
    people who play the game (and who do so, almost always, on 
    the game's terms). The essay ultimately argues that 
    EverQuest is an important site for the articulation and 
    experience of cultural and political value, of broader 
    understandings of communities and what they mean, and of 
    the question of "literature" (or, more broadly, "expression") 
    in digital contexts. --eh, ew 
    Brian Reed, "Eden or Ebb of the Sea": Susan Howe's Word 
    Squares and Postlinear Poetics
       o Abstract: Instead of lines or stanzas, contemporary 
    innovative poetry frequently relies on unfamiliar, often 
    highly visual organizing principles. This essay argues that 
    today's "postlinear" poetries represent less a coherent 
    movement or style, though, than a diverse set of inquiries 
    into the interface between visual and verbal means of 
    communication. To demonstrate the difficulties of 
    generalizing about this heterogeneous phenomenon, this 
    essay concentrates on accounting for the origins and 
    function of one device, the word square, in the poetry of 
    Susan Howe. Such a task requires that one examine Howe's 
    early career as an installation artist, her admiration of 
    the painter of Agnes Martin, her apprenticeship to the 
    concrete poet Ian Hamilton Finlay, and the abiding thematic 
    role of the open ocean in her writing. The essay concludes 
    with a brief comparison of Howe's word squares to those 
    employed by another writer, Myung Mi Kim, to illustrate 
    the need for further, case-by-case analysis before critics 
    can claim any reliable mapping of this new phase in the 
    history of English-language verse. --br 
Copyright (c) 2004 Postmodern Culture & Johns Hopkins 
University Press

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