Intellectual history of cannibalism. “Cannibal Feast–Fiji.”
Postcard sent on 15 July 1907. Romanian political scientist CÄƒtÄƒlin Avramescu is the author of the enticing book An Intellectual History of Cannibalism. It is apparently the best scholarly book about the cultural impact and political theory surrounding people who eat people. Interesting topic, but perhaps too meaty for my current media diet. I'm pleased Cabinet has interviewed Avramescu so I can digest his material in more bite-sized chunks. Do you really think it’s possible to do the intellectual history of cannibalism without doing the history of cannibalism itself? "The Raw and the Cooked: An Interview with CÄƒtÄƒlin Avramescu"
History of the Dream Machine. As I've written on BB before, Brion Gysin is one of my favorite artists, and his thinking and interests influenced me in myriad ways.
Gysin is perhaps best known as the "discoverer" of the cut-up technique popularized by his best friend William S. Burroughs, and the co-inventor of the trance-inducing Dreamachine. Gysin was also a pioneer of sound poetry and multimedia collage that, in my mind, underpins remix culture, quick-cut video editing, and nonlinear Web experiences. In 1958, he experienced a hallucination caused by the sun flickering through trees and was inspired to develop the Dream Machine, a device meant to induce a dreamlike state though strobing light. According to Gysin, it was the "the first art object to be seen with the eyes closed. " As the Sun set on 21 December 1958, the artist and poet Brion Gysin experienced a vivid hallucination while on a bus driving through rural France. Fortean Times: Dream Machine. Ancient temples designed for tripping. Acoustic archaeologists are exploring how the Chavin culture in Peru may have designed underground temples to blow worshippers' minds using low-tech sound and light shows.
Of course, this thread continued in cathedrals with massive stained glass windows and organs all the way to today's high-end multimedia megachurches. According to Miriam Kolar of Stanford's Center for Computer Research and Acoustics, the temple's maze of tunnels "could be physically disorienting and the acoustic environment is very different than the natural world," and might be especially freaky for folks who were tripping balls. "The iconography (of ancient Chavin drawings) shows people mixed with animal features in altered states of being," said Kolar, who is presenting her recent work at a conference in Cancun, Mexico this week. "There is peyote and mucus trails out of the nose indicative of people using psychoactive plant substances.
Chinese Twitter sentence: a year in a labor camp for a retweet. The Twitter avatar for Cheng Jianping.
A retweeted joke has landed a Chinese woman in a labor camp for a year, Amnesty International reported Wednesday. On the day of her wedding, Oct. 27, Chinese online activist Cheng Jianping disappeared. Only this week did her whereabouts surface: She had been detained and sentenced by police to a year of "re-education through labor" for retweeting a suggestion that Chinese youth attack the Japanese Pavilion at the Shanghai Expo.
Her fiance Hua Chunhui made a satirical comment mocking youth demonstrators who smashed Japanese products in protest over a dispute with Japan over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea. "Anti-Japanese demonstrations, smashing Japanese products, that was all done years ago by Guo Quan [an activist and expert on the Nanjing Massacre]. Cheng retweeted the message and added "Charge, angry youth! " HOWTO investigate a Satanic ritual killing.