On November 15, 2010, in Brazil, I launched the (Portuguese-only) anthology of my work, I Must Not Think Bad Thoughts: Essays on American Empire, Digital Culture, Posthuman Porn, and the Sexual Symbolism of Madonna’s Big Toe (Editora Sulina) at the prestigious FLIPORTO book fair, in Olinda.
Here’s the Table of Contents:
Becoming Ballardian: Making Sense of the Future Present
“The Being John Malkovich Effect,” blogs as a peephole into the mass unconscious, Revista Cult (Brazil, Portuguese), June 2007.
“(Face)Book of the Dead,” haunted, on Facebook, by the risen dead of your high-school yearbook, Cabinet, issue 36, 2010.
“Paper Trail,” essay on information anxiety and the agony of all those unread copies of The New York Times, Bookforum, Fall 2001.
“Word Salad Surgery: Surrealist Spam, Deconstructed,” robot spam re-read as Surrealist poetry, El Niuton (Columbia, Spanish/English), 2007.
“Slashing the Borg: Resistance is Fertile,” homoerotic fan fiction about Star Trek’s cyborg menace, 21.C, 1996.
“Straight, Gay, or Binary?,” why 2001’s HAL computer was gay, Suck.com, May 1997.
“Phallus Mirabilis: Money Shots meet The Matrix,” hardcore porn discovers high-tech special F/X, Nerve.com, August 11, 2003.
“Black to the Future: Afrofuturism,” from Flame Wars: The Discourse of Cyberculture (first published in the “Cyberculture” issue of the South Atlantic Quarterly, ed. Mark Dery, Fall 1993; reprinted in Flame Wars: the Discourse of Cyberculture, ed. Mark Dery (Durham: Duke University Press, 1994).
“Killing Time,” a social history of time famine and cultural vertigo, Artbyte, July/August 2000.
Circus Americanus: Pathologies of Empire
“Memo Mori,” a melancholy meditation on the corporate memos that fluttered down from the Trade Towers, Bookforum, Winter 2001.
“‘A Terrible Beauty’: Aesthetics After 9/11,” Print, January/February 2004.
“Axles of Evil,” the SUV as a totem of Ugly Americanism, Vogue Hommes, fall/winter 2004-2005.
“Fashion Victims,” the morality of wearing camo-themed fashion during wartime, ID magazine, November 2006.
“Wimps, Wussies, and W.: Masculinity, American Style,” George W. Bush’s fear of the Wussy Within and his Oedipal smackdown of his father, The Los Angeles Times, May 3, 2007.
“Jocko Homo: How Gay is the Super Bowl?,” the homosocial/homoerotic subtext of jock culture, True/Slant, February 9, 2010.
“We Tell Ourselves Stories In Order to Live”: The Politics of Pop Culture
“Golf War Syndrome,” class warfare on the golf course, Suck.com, June 2000.
“Shoah Business,” the theme-parking of the Holocaust, GettingIt.com, November 8, 1999.
“Deconstructing Harry,” the deeper meanings of Prince Harry’s Nazi costume, Shovelware, January 26, 2005.
“Dimed Out,” the elitist anti-consumerism of the Buy Nothing Day, Shovelware, January 20, 2005.
“Toe Fou,” Freudian advertising and the sexual symbolism of Madonna’s big toe, Shovelware, February 7, 2005.
“Dead Man Walking: What Do Zombies Mean?,” True/Slant, March 17, 2010.
Dark Matter: The Alien, the Abject, the Gothic, the Grotesque
“Open Wide,” on the sadistic dentist in film and urban myth, Shovelware, January 4, 2005.
“Gray Matter,” on the New York Public Library’s medical branch and its bizarre collections, Village Voice Literary Supplement, Fall 2002.
“Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Severed Head,” Cabinet, Spring 2003.
“The Necro Files,” on Amok Press, Apocalypse Culture, and marketing anomie, The Village Voice, December 2000.
“Death To All Humans! The Church of Euthanasia’s modest proposal,” GettingIt.com, August 2, 1999.
“Great Caesar’s Ghost: On Rome’s Cemetery of the Capuchins,” Boing Boing, August 10, 2009.
“Aphrodites of the Operating Theater,” on the 18th century “anatomical Venuses” on display at Florence’s La Specola museum, Boing Boing, August 15, 2009.
“Goodbye, Cruel Words,” the semiotics of the suicide note, Bookforum, Summer 2003.
Tripe Soup for the Soul: Religion, and All Its Works and Ways
“Tripe Soup for the Soul,” a social history of the Daily Affirmation and a sardonic critique of the power-of-positive-thinking movement, Bookforum, Summer 2002.
“Pontification,” on the death of the pope, Shovelware, April 5, 2005.
“2012: Carnival of Bunkum,” about New Age prophecies of the world’s end in 2012, H+ magazine, November 12, 2009.
“The Vast Santanic Conspiracy: Is St. Nick the Tool of a Plot Too Monstrous to Mention?,” Las Vegas Weekly, December 24, 2009.
The Talking Cure: Anatomizing the Author
“Blunt Instrument,” BookForum, Winter 2002. “Invisible Lit” column on the MMPI (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Index) as literature, using my own test results as grist for cultural-critical mill.
“Cortex Envy: Bringing Up Baby Einstein,” a psychobiographical essay on the IQ test in American history, in Cabinet magazine, issue 34, summer 2009.