Posts Tagged ‘Johannes Göransson’

Notes on Johannes Göransson’s Pageant

Monday, February 28th, 2011

I first read Johannes Göransson’s Entrance to a colonial pageant in which we all begin to intricate (Tarpaulin Sky, 2011), on a rickety train moving westward from South Bend, Indiana, to Chicago during the recent blizzard. The ride, which usually takes 2.5 hours or so, stretched into a nearly 4 hour-long, thunder-snow tour of rust belt America. This is not a review. This is a context.

As we chugged through locales such as Michigan City, Indiana, and Gary, I set my reading of this book on repeat. The book, itself a hybrid form somewhere between or among the categories of poetry, prose, essay, theatre production, and instruction manual, is also an exercise in engaging with the fluidity of self. Riding the train in such conditions, one identifies with the character of THE PASSENGER who states, acts, or otherwise embodies the following words in its opening salvo:

I was admitted. I had to answer questions. Are you gay? Are

you a terrorist? Are you a communist? I answered No to all the

questions. After a while I started noticing that the questions had

changed. What do insects have to do with cinema? Can you hear

me? Are we underwater? Can I kick you in the face? Why do

your spasms look infantile? Do you know how to break a radio?

But I kept answering No. Because that’s what I wanted to hear

myself say with that bag over my face

and also is embodied by THE NATIVES who “ask these questions of the most beautiful people they can find in a mall”:


An Excerpt from Johannes Göransson’s Entrance to a colonial pageant in which we all begin to intricate

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

An excerpt from Johannes Göransson’s forthcoming new book Entrance to a colonial pageant in which we all begin to intricate is live at Tarpaulin Sky’s Chronic Content feature. I’ve read this book a few times this year already; it is insane sickly gorgeous power. It is a big thing. Preorder here.

Johannes Göransson Does A Lot of Interesting Things, And Here Are Three Recent and Interesting Things from Johannes Göransson

Friday, November 19th, 2010

1. Johannes Göransson interviews Robert Archambeau about the Cambridge School, among other things, at the UK’s Argotist Online:

JG: But what about Deleuze and Guattari’s idea of Kafka as “minor literature.” His very deformation of the German language becomes a profound type of political activity. Could there be a minor politics involved in the Cambridge School?

RA: This, I think, is an interesting path to pursue, and one that leads in a similar direction to the observations of Sadri and Kiberd. For Deleuze and Guattari, major literature is the literature that articulates the values of a dominant population. I think Goethe’s Faust was the example they used in the book on Kafka: Faust became a kind of model for the bourgeois subject of the nineteenth century, trying to police his own desires in a world of new powers and possibilities, and in the absence of the old hierarchical constraints on actions. But minor literature, in this scheme, is the really interesting thing: it’s the means by which dominant values, and even the language through which they are articulated, and inverted, parodied, questioned, and mocked. Deleuze and Guattari didn’t see this as necessarily the literature of a marginal or oppressed population, but to write in this mode was to position oneself outside the dominant values of one’s place and time.  Is this political? It depends on the definition of the term. If we take politics in a very strict sense—as a change in the polity—it’s probably fair to say that such a literature is political, but weakly so.  If we think of long-term shifts in consciousness, its role could be taken to be larger, perhaps considerably so, but of course it is easy to exaggerate this, and hard to demonstrate it. I remember a conversation back in 1996 at the “Assembling Alternatives” conference in New Hampshire, a huge event that gathered experimental poets from all over the English-speaking world.  A woman from the audience stood up, and declared that the funding for her experimental poetry magazine, and for all other magazines, was precarious, because “the power structure knows we’re the ones challenging their language.” This, I thought, was an understanding so crude as to be almost a parody. I’ve encountered that kind of thinking more than once, though. (


Lynch LSD Walks Sprawl Tour

Friday, September 17th, 2010

Our #3 face is sexy, we are almost 3. That's close to 7.

1. @ Montevidayo, Johannes Göransson posted an excellent consideration of Nathan Lee’s consideration of a few books on David Lynch’s work.

2. @ DC’s, Dennis Cooper posted an excellent roundup of fun and interesting oddity, including re: Drawing on LSD, Kathy Acker’s last work, an Urs Alleman interview, and lots of else.

3. @ Thought Catalog, Franklin Bruno wrote up a thoughtful consideration on Jon Cotner and Andy Fitch’s fantastic Ten Walks/Two Talks.

4. Next Friday, September 24, if you are in Chicago there is a launch party for Danielle Dutton’s brilliant new novel Sprawl, 7:30 PM at the Women and Children First Bookstore, also featuring Kate Zambreno.

5. In celebration of their about to be released second issue, Artifice Magazine is going on tour! A magazine on tour seems amazing.

Second Mess Section

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

1. After being beaten into a brain-damaging coma by five men outside a bar, Mark built a 1/6th scale World War II-era town in his backyard. –Marwencol, a photoblog

2. ‘And I personally only like high-class escorts. I don’t like sleeping with people I really love. I don’t want to sleep with them because sex cannot last, but affection can last forever. I think this is healthy. And for the way the rich live, this is possible. But the other world, I think they need porn. I also think it’s much more difficult to perform in porn than to fake some emotion on the face as an actor.’ –an interview with Karl Lagerfeld

3. Kubrick triple shot: Johannes Goransson & Joyelle McSweeney on The Shining, on The Shining (Kubrick: Freud in his essay on the uncanny wrote that the sense of the uncanny is the only emotion which is more powerfully expressed in art than in life, which I found very illuminating; it didn’t help writing the screenplay, but I think it’s an interesting insight into the genre.), and on my favorite enigma: Eyes Wide Shut.

4. ‘It turns out the doppleganger is Anya Liftig, a Brooklyn-based performance artist, and her intervention on Abramovic’s “The Artist is Present” was a performance of her own, which she has titled “The Anxiety of Influence” after the Harold Bloom book of the same title.’ –an interview with said interloper

This is a Formica table

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

1. @ The Guardian, Twin Peaks celebrates its 20th anniversary.
2. An excerpt from Johannes Göransson’s recently completed novel, Haute Surveillance (which is fucking incredible), presented by Andrew Lundwall.
3. A trailer for Ben Mirov’s Ghost Machine, forthcoming from Caketrain:

Massive People (13): Johannes Göransson

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009


If I had to make a list of modern forces for the grossvoice, for the kind of language and propagation of a series of imagery and discussion that is continually underfunded or otherwise ignored, Johannes Göransson would being among those crowning the list. An editor and founder of the vital Action Books, as well as its web component Action Yes (both one of my favorite presses and online journals, publishing big voices such as Lara Glenum, Aase Berg, and a high # of books in translation), Johannes is also the author, so far, of three books of new mind and language: Pilot (Fairy Tale Review Press), A New Quarantine Will Take My Place (Apostrophe Books), and Dear Ra (Starcherone Press). This year Black Ocean released his translation of major Swedish poet Aase Berg, With Deer, one of many works in translation Göransson has put together.

Recently I sent a couple of questions Johannes’s way, and he responded in force, as might be expected, about the history of Action, the grotesque, Genet, and !!!!