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Postmodern Village
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The Mainly Annual
EastWesterly Review/Postmodern Village
12th Annual
Conference

Pop Goes the Culture ('Cuz the Culture Goes Pop)

E.W. WilderRum Reagan Ice Cream: on Culinarian Contingencies and Iran-Contra - the Celebrity Chef, the Roman-a-Clef, and the Presidential Chimp, a Po-Morality Tale
by E.W. Wilder

Hang in there, Wilder, they’ll revive the office of Special Prosecutor just for you . . . some day. After Cherry’s heated presentation, however, the free frozen confections were welcome, if a bit soupy in the broiling West-Aussie air.

Ray Gene ThamesPenfold’s Five: the Cartoon as ModRock - Nerds on Parade
by Ray Gene Thames

Until each of Dave Matthews’ actions comes with an ancillary funny noise, we’ll remain skeptical. But Thames’ paper saved the day in the end with the seance to channel the spirit of Mel Blanc. What’s up, Doc? Scrüj MacDuhk.

H. Pap BrownHick Hop: How Inevitable Blackification has Finally Evaded Redneck Culture
by H. Pap Brown

It had to happen sooner or later; we’re just atwitty with anticipation of Brown’s Compton PRCA Tho’ Down and Open Mic Night slated for September. Bring your Sean-Jean chaps and ten-gallon Kango! and meet me at the Courvoisier stand.

Annie KuntslerFree to Be Me and Me: Political Correctness on the FoxNews (Mirror) Stage
by Annie Kuntsler

If you’d ever thought that the pundits on Rupert Murdoch’s mouthpiece sounded a bit like a bunch of stuffy white guys congratulating themselves on how much they agree with each other, then Kuntsler’s paper would be for you. Her diagrams of how the FoxNews corp’s flow chart resembles a demonstration of phallic auto-eroticism was a slam dunk. They all hated Jocelyn Elders simply because she had their number.

Dean Lanny“Hacksaw” Jim Dugan, Tornadoes, Tools, and the Runaway Bride: “Hard”ware and “Hard” News in the Cage Match for the Crown of King of Cable
by Dean Lanny

Having thought we’d left tornado wrestling to Pecos Bill, I was as surprised as the next gal that such a sport existed. But Dean’s angry, screaming delivery distracted a bit and made one wonder if one could catch a rerun of Matlock instead of watching him present his paper. When the 2X4 went through the window and chairs began to fly, everybody ran for shelter.

Mantextuality: Handwriting Analysis, CSI, and The New Forensicism, or Horatio Caine and the Hand of George Sand
by Jack K. Quincy

For those who thought The New Historicism a bit too vague and wishy-washy, Quincy presents us with a critical apparatus that will provide many an English department ample opportunities to write grant proposals to the NIH and the FBI for equipment and expertise. For those seriously into books, Quincy opens up the possibility for literal literary deconstruction. Disturbingly, the blacklight also revealed the traces of past readers’ congealed phlegm. As awful as it sounds, nose-picking is now being shown to be a necessary component of cogitation. Quincy’s analytical techniques may be genius, but do we really want to know about the vast new realms in the reams between the covers?

Mallory CanardMoby Duck: Disnification, Corporate Desperation, and How Culture Eats Its Brow
by Mallory Canard

From Eisner to Einstein, from Beauty and the Beast to the Beastie Boys, there is no way to stay relevant better than making the inaccessible execrable. But if we stay on this trace, art and literature will be E=MC-screwed. Still, we’re not sure Mallory’s suggestion to terrorize Epcot with duck calls would get through. Unlike in the ‘60s, we can’t protest the devolution of culture by burning our brows.

Chance E. ClareAnd the Cock Crew: Cultural Gang Rape in the Year of the Rooster
by Chance E. Clare

All we could do is cluck “Too true! Too true!”

May Mervyn, Isadora Magnin, and Carson P. ScottTarget on Culture: How The Red Balloon Sold Its Soul to the Corporate Logos
by May Mervyn, Isadora Magnin, and Carson P. Scott

Combining “ingénueity” and wicked business acumen, the lonesome Red Balloon of children’s film fame has made quite a career for herself recently. But who is using whom? Mervyn, Magnin and Scott weave Aristotle, interplay, and a theology of disco[u]ntent in such a way as to make this observer wonder if perhaps she should expect more when she pays less. All that said, gift certificates for those who sat through the whole paper even after the bar opened would have been a nice postmodern touch.

IkeaRod: Dog Racing, Monster Garage and the Economy of Swedish Canine Design
by Jan Stockholm

[Re]combining the latest in genetic engineering with the spirit of cable TV, Stockholm shows how the future of mass [re]production is really mass customization. His chopped and channeled massage chair was welcome, but the poor huskies with the flame-job fur suffered miserably in the Jigalong heat.


Acknowledgments

We’d like to thank all of this year’s participants for putting up with the mud and the heat and the relative lack of civilization, but how better to demonstrate Othering than with smothering heat and lung-damaging dust intercut with spikes of torrential rain? Had Sylvia Plath been Australian, we’d have all these tropes of femynyn alienation to work with already. Sometimes culture is created for the critics; sometimes the critics must create the culture.

We’d also like to thank special guest Colin Hay for his work as emcee and impromptu Combi mechanic and for his lovely rendition of “It’s a Mistake” to kick off the conference on the proper note.

We are continually reminded of the extreme sacrifices the academic must make and our continuing outsider status, like the long-suffering Aborigynals of Jigalong who, try as they might, are so co-opted by the patriarchal hegemony that they can’t even seem to give a damn about Annette Kolodny, and who are so distanced from their own Otherness that they think Gilbert and Gubar are two different flavors of candy. May the Goddess have mercy on us all.