Filed under book | Tags: · algeria, biography, colonialism, communism, existentialism, france, literature, marxism, négritude, philosophy, psychiatry, race, racism
“Born in Martinique, Frantz Fanon (1925–61) trained as a psychiatrist in Lyon before taking up a post in colonial Algeria. He had already experienced racism as a volunteer in the Free French Army, in which he saw combat at the end of the Second World War. In Algeria, Fanon came into contact with the Front de Libération Nationale, whose ruthless struggle for independence was met with exceptional violence from the French forces. He identified closely with the liberation movement, and his political sympathies eventually forced him out the country, whereupon he became a propagandist and ambassador for the FLN, as well as a seminal anticolonial theorist.
David Macey’s eloquent life of Fanon provides a comprehensive account of a complex individual’s personal, intellectual and political development. It is also a richly detailed depiction of postwar French culture. Fanon is revealed as a flawed and passionate humanist deeply committed to eradicating colonialism.”
First published by Picador, 2000
Second edition published by Verso, London, 2012
ISBN 9781844677733, 1844677737
Reviews: Megan Vaughan (London Review of Books, 2001), Peter Lennon (The Guardian, 2001), Mark Christian (Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History, 2002), Gareth Stanton (History Workshop Journal, 2002), Ciaran Mulholland (Socialist World, 2002), Godwin Kwadwo Osei-Nyame (Research in African Literatures, 2004), Kirkus Reviews (2001), Publishers Weekly (2001), Stephen Howe (New Humanist, 2013).
Interview with author (Theory, Culture & Society, 2011).Comment (0)
Filed under book | Tags: · biography, electronic music, music, music history, politics
“Leon Theremin led a life of flamboyant musical invention laced with daring electronic stealth. A creative genius and prolific inventor, Theremin launched the field of electronic music virtually singlehandedly in 1920 with the musical instrument that bears his name. The theremin-–the only instrument that is played without being touched-–created a sensation worldwide and paved the way for the modern synthesizer. Its otherworldly sound became familiar in sci-fi films and even in rock music. This magical instrument that charmed millions, however, is only the beginning of the story.
As a Soviet scientist, Theremin surrendered his life and work to the service of State espionage. On assignment in Depression-era America, he became the toast of New York society and worked the engines of capitalist commerce while passing data on U.S. industrial technology to the Soviet apparat. Following his sudden disappearance from New York in 1938, Theremin was exiled to a Siberian labor camp and subsequently vanished into the top-secret Soviet intelligence machine, presumed dead for nearly thirty years. Using the same technology that lay behind the theremin, he designed bugging devices that eavesdropped on U.S. diplomatic offices and stood at the center of a pivotal cold war confrontation. Throughout his life, Theremin developed many other electronic wonders, including one of the earliest televisions and multimedia devices that anticipated performance art and virtual reality by decades.
In this first full biography of Leon Theremin, Albert Glinsky depicts the inventor’s nearly one hundred-year life span as a microcosm of the twentieth century. Theremin is seen at the epicenter of most of the major events of the century: the Russian Revolution, two world wars, America’s Great Depression, Stalin’s purges, the cold war, and perestroika. His life emerges as no less than a metaphor for the divergence of communism and capitalism.”
Foreword by Robert Moog
Publisher University of Illinois Press, 2000
ISBN 0252025822, 9780252025822
PDF (138 MB, no OCR)Comment (0)
Filed under book | Tags: · art history, avant-garde, biography, collage, constructivism, dada, machine
“Designed to accompany the Schwitters exhibitions in New York, London and Hanover, John Elderfield’s masterly study of Schwitters fulfils all the promise of his articles on that artist from the years 1969 to 1977 and surpasses any other academic work on the same subject in five major respects: first, in its attention to all phases of Schwitters’s work (the pre-1917 and post-1937 phases as well as the classically Merz period); second, in its judicious and balanced attention to all aspects of Schwitters’s multi-media work; third, in its refusal to reduce Schwitters’s artistic and theoretical work to one simple set of ideas or to privilege one mode of expression over another; fourth, in its generous sense of the rich artistic background (Cubism, Sturm, Dada, Constructivism) out of which Schwitters’s variegated work arose; and fifth, in its prodigious familiarity with the vast secondary literature dealing with the Modernist avant-gardes. The extent of Elderfield’s research is immensely impressive and the result of this is an authoritative, clearly-written book which combines a sure grasp of factual detail, a shrewd analytical sense vis-a-vis individual works, a complex understanding of the theoretical problems posed by Schwitters’s cpuvre and a fluid empathy with all of its levels. Quite apart from the 355 high-quality illustrations, the uniform excellence of Elderfield’s text makes the book indispensable for any serious student of German and European Modernism and effortlessly accessible to the non-specialist as well.” (Richard Sheppard’s 1986 review)
Publisher Thames and Hudson, London, 1985