continent. maps a topology of unstable confluences and ranges across new thinking, traversing interstices and alternate directions in culture, theory, biopolitics and art.
Issue 1.4 / 2011
Letter from the Editors
Jamie Allen, Nico Jenkins, Paul Boshears

This fourth issue of continent. was created, for you, dear reader. The result of months of back-breaking thinking, emailing, looking, clicking, watching, writing and reading, our winter issue is here. We celebrate the completion of the first year and can't wait to share with you what's in store for the next.

A Playful Reading of the Double Quotation in The Descent of Alette by Alice Notley
Feliz Molina

In this lyric essay we encounter the work done by the double quote: an object that holds a space, that de-familiarizes and imparts the "sensation of [it] as [it is] perceived and not as they are known." Molina presents the case that the work of the double quote is not so different from our Occup(ied) moments.

The Crisis of Negation: An Interview with Alain Badiou
John Van Houdt

“My proposition is at the beginning to formalize not what the paradigm of the world is but what the fundamental relations are which formalize, finally, the fact for a multiplicity to be the world. That is the point. After that, when you know what the transcendental is, what the discussion of the multiplicity of the trans-cendental, and so on is, you can propose many forms, in fact an infinite multiplicity of different forms of the paradigm of the world.”

Sonification
Justin Joque

Through data sonification—the rendering of numeric information into sound waves—Joque maps the daily changes in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and the the daily number of trades, from the late 1920s to early 2011. What we have here is a soundtrack for the impact of neoliberal economic policies.

Jimmie Durham's Pirogenetico, pirogenetico
Eileen Sommerman
An activist for the American Indian Movement (AIM) and visual artist, Jimmie Durham's body of work confounds a simple (verbal) reading. His diptych seems to be a response to François Berthier's question, "Is there a language of stone?" What kind of voice could they have?
The Missing Link / Monument for the Distribution of Wealth (Johannesburg, 2010)
Vincent W.J. van Gerven Oei, Jonas Staal

The artists have a knack for presenting the cruel absurdity latent in representative democracy. For example, siting their work at a monument for democracy that's housed on the premises of a private corporation running both an amusement park and the Apartheid Museum.

Burqas in Back Alleys: Street Art, hijab, and the Reterritorialization of Public Space
John A. Sweeney

Examining the symbolic and representational nature of the Islamic “veil” in its various forms, this project situates the political contestations of public space at stake in the French ban alongside street artist practices that mediate a counter-spectacle to the objectification of women within contemporary society.

Belief: An Essay
Jamie Iredell
The author of Book of Freaks (2011, Future Tense Books) shares an excerpt from his forthcoming nonfiction book, "Last Mass," a memoir about growing up as a Catholic in California, and about the Spanish missionaries who first settled the state.
The Poetry of Alessandro De Francesco
Belle Cushing
"Somewhere in between mathematics and theory, light and dark, physicality and projection, oscillates the poetry of Alessandro De Francesco." The cinematic poetry of De Francesco, some of it for the first time translated into English, is presented in its Italian original as well.
Don't Forget to Remember Me: Memory, Mourning, and Jeremy Fernando's Writing Death
Lim Lee Ching
Writing Death (2011, Uitgeverij) opens a meditation on the possibility of mourning a public gesture meant to sate a private need. In this ritual performance an alchemical process occurs.