Cultural Studies

Modernism and Lost Technology

Poetry aficionados, media archaeologists and scholars of modernism might have heard of the ‘godfather of the e-reader’ Bob Brown, and his infamous ‘Reading Machine’ – but his wife Rose is an equally compelling figure. In fact, her story changes how we understand the connections between technological and literary innovation, and their capacity to promote social change, and with one exception, it has remained untold.

Literary Studies

What Is the Point of Literary Criticism?

Anglophone literary criticism has over the last decade engaged in a searching analysis and critique of its own methods. Perhaps surprisingly, much of that debate has considered *how* one should engage in literary interpretation—whether one should read closely or from a distance, interpret in a paranoid or reparative way, emphasize the work’s surface or depth, engage in “critique” or some other mode of attachment—and rather less *why*. But we might benefit from asking that question more openly: what, after all, is the point of literary criticism? Why does this practice merit the sustained intellectual energy so many scholars have devoted to it?