or slip through (or sink within)
Somebody once said to me—asked me if I was happy, and I said, ‘Are you kidding? I’d be miserable if I was happy.’
Barbra Streisand
Jason Mraz - A Beautiful Mess
16 plays

A Beautiful Mess || Jason Mraz


People say “phase” like impermanence means insignificance. Show me a permanent state of the self.

The business of the novelist is not to relate great events, but to make small ones interesting.
Arthur Schopenhauer, “On Some Forms of Literature”
In this chapter, I consider the modernism of the late nineteenth­ century critic and novelist Walter Pater, drawing a link between his aesthetics of failure and his experience of bearing a marginalized sexual identity. … A ‘queer’ Pater has emerged in recent criticism, as several critics have explored the relation between his status as a sexual outsider and his aesthetics. Although these critics have attended most fully to the effects of secrecy and concealment in Pater’s work, I am particularly interested in drawing out his investment in failure and in victimization. We might read all of Pater’s writings as dedicated to the figure of the victim: in this sense, he cultivates a modernist aesthetic based not on violent transgression but rather on refusal and passivity. Such a form of shrinking resistance is at odds with the protocols of mod­ernist rebellion, and it has often been read as a sign of Pater’s aestheti­cist withdrawal from the field of the social. I suggest recasting his aes­thetics of failure as a complex response to a particular historical experience of exclusion. His own situation was paradoxical; he participated in older, private forms of homosexual subcultural life at the same time that he witnessed the birth of homosexuality as a modern category of identity. In this sense, I think it is possible to understand Pater as doubly displaced, inhabiting a threatened position as someone with se­crets to keep and as someone whose particular form of secrecy was fast becoming superannuated. Living through this moment of profound historical transformation, he imagined a world in which time was sus­pended.

Pater’s break with the future and with the hard revolutionism of the modernists has made him the cause of some embarrassment. He has been closely linked to the ills of aestheticism: political quietism, withdrawal from the world, hermeticism, nostalgia, a slack relativism, and the elevation of beauty above justice. I want to suggest that what has been seen as a lack of political commitment might be better understood as Pater’s failure to approximate the norms of modernist political subjec­tivity. I read withdrawal in his work not as a refusal of politics but rather as a politics of refusal and see in this shrinking politics a specifically queer response to the experience of social exclusion. The key practices of such a politics—secrecy, ascesis, the vaporization of the self, and tem­poral delay—depart significantly from the modernist protocols of political intervention. Nonetheless, I argue that we should understand his backwardness as an alternative form of politics—one that is consonant with the experience of marginalized subjects.
Heather Love, Feeling Backwards: Loss and the Politics of Queer History


Don’t ever trust an ally who says

  • violence is not the answer
  • don’t sink to their level
  • you can’t fight hate with hate
  • don’t do to them what they did to you

because they are a terrible ally and they don’t actually care about ending your oppression.

To be so lost and not have the strength to regret it.
Franz Kafka, Diaries  (via kafkaesque-world)
Ingrid Michaelson - Porcelain Fists
28 plays

Porcelain Fists || Ingrid Michaelson

Democracy has become Empire’s euphemism for neo-liberal capitalism.
Arundhati Roy, An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire


ATTN CISHETS: there is no sudden “queer identity fad” caused by the internet. you’ve just been wrapped up in your sad tiny world, never noticing the expansive world of queer people you’ve been erasing the existence of by assuming they’re all cis and straight like you.

The others in the dorm thought I wanted to be a writer, because I was always alone with a book, but I had no such ambition. There was nothing I wanted to be.
Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood

Voyager 1 as it approached Jupiter, 1979

Voyager 1 as it approached Jupiter, 1979