Book Review: Understanding Jennifer Egan by Alexander Moran

Understanding Jennifer Egan by Alexander Moran is the first book-length study to provide critical analysis of all of Jennifer Egan’s published fiction to date. Arriving in the same year as Ivan Krielkamp’s A Visit from the Goon Squad REREAD,[i] the rising critical attention to Egan’s work is a welcome sight, correcting the tendency to overlook Egan’s constant and significant presence in contemporary fiction. Continue reading

Tim Galsworthy on the 2021 BAAS Peter Parish Award

In March 2021, I was fortunate enough to be the recipient of a Postgraduate Research Assistance Award from BAAS. Receiving this award, especially one named after the great Peter Parish, was humbling. This award was also invaluable for my doctoral project. After initially considering the possibility of a visit to… Continue reading

Book Review: The Rise of Common-Sense Conservatism: The American Right and the Reinvention of the Scottish Enlightenment by Antti Lepisto

Why were historians of conservatism shocked by Donald Trump’s rise? Antti Lepistö, an intellectual historian at the University of Oulu, Finland, seeks to answer this question in his first monograph, The Rise of Common-Sense Conservatism: The American Right and the Reinvention of the Scottish Enlightenment. The work is split into six chapters each focusing on a different element of neoconservative thought. The first- and second-chapters study journalist Irving Kristol’s use of ‘common man’ rhetoric in the late-1970s and early-1980s, and how social scientist James Q. Wilson built upon this. Continue reading

Taking Notice: Nature and Climate Change Deniers in American Climate Fiction

Climate change is no taboo topic as in recent years, figures and organisations such as Greta Thunberg and WWF have brought the on-going environmental crisis to the media’s forefront, presenting us with frankly terrifying statistics about our planet’s future if radical changes to our destructive behaviours are not made. Literature… Continue reading

Meditations on Critical Race Theory and 21st Century Anti-Communism

In recent months, there have been ongoing public discussions about Critical Race Theory (CRT).[i] With Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts backing a resolution to combat the teaching of Critical Race Theory in the state’s universities,  and other states responding to crowds of parents and protestors calling for the ‘removal of CRT… Continue reading

Book Review: The American Weird: Concept and Medium edited by Julius Greeve and Florian Zappe

The American Weird is an essay collection divided in two parts: ‘Concept’ and ‘Medium’. Its claim to originality lies in the latter part’s focus on manifestations of the weird in non-literary media running the gamut from film and music to television and videogames. Naturally, however, these cannot be discussed in isolation from the first part’s question of ‘concept’ – of what the weird is. Continue reading

The Historiography of Ethan Allen

Ethan Allen is widely celebrated as one of the founding fathers of Vermont, formerly called the New Hampshire Grants until it declared itself an independent republic in 1777. In the decades prior to Allen’s arrival in the Grants, the settlers (the majority of whom owned illegitimate land grants from New… Continue reading

“Heeere’s Johnny!”…Again…and Again…: Pluto TV and the Continued Presence of Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show

(Image source: https://www.facebook.com/PlutoTV/videos/johnny-carson-tv/1012800892491661/)   In August 2020, Pluto TV, a free streaming service from ViacomCBS, launched a new channel called “Johnny Carson TV.” Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, the channel streams hour-long edited episodes of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (NBC, 1962-1992).[i] This article will explore… Continue reading

‘Brings Back Some Memories’: Textual and metatextual experiences of nostalgia in Twin Peaks: The Return

  “When you see me again, it won’t be me,” the entity called The Arm warns in the second season finale of Twin Peaks, the cult 1990s TV series co-created by screenwriter Mark Frost and filmmaker David Lynch. This cryptic statement was borne out by the long-awaited revival of the… Continue reading

“Be Curious, Not Judgemental.” Influences of Positivity and Kindness in Ted Lasso

    In the summer of 2020, Ted Lasso, a sitcom centred around a former NBC soccer promoter, was released to both critical and commercial success and appeared to channel a specifically upbeat register quite unlike its peers. Built on the tried-and-tested ‘fish out of water’ comedy trope, Ted Lasso centres… Continue reading