Author Archives: Taylor Aitken

21 things about Michael Haneke’s The Seventh Continent

Even though I don’t think it’s possible to “spoil” this film, I should mention that this post has spoilers. The Seventh Continent is a movie about a mother, a father, and a daughter – a bourgeois family – who commit suicide. It’s Michael Haneke’s first film. His stylistic influences stand out, most notably those of Robert […]

10 things about Karl Korsch’s Marxism and Philosophy

Karl Korsch is a Marxist theorist who argues that Marxism, properly understood from a dialectical materialist perspective, is descended from (though opposed to) Hegelianism. His more practical thesis is that a revolutionary Marxist practice cannot achieve its goals without a simultaneous development in Marxist theory. That thesis seems quaint today but this was written in the 20s where I […]

21 things about Søren Kierkegaard’s Fear and Trembling

Fear and Trembling is about the story of Abraham. Particularly, the part where Abraham takes Isaac up Mount Moriah to sacrifice him at God’s command. I’m maybe 80% sure this book is just Kierkegaard making fun of Hegelians. This could also be because I started Fear and Trembling right after I finished Hegel’s Phenomenology of […]

10 things about Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin

Under the Skin is about an alien who drives around Scotland in a van seducing and kidnapping men. Jonathan Glazer also directed Sexy Beast. But Under the Skin is nothing like Sexy Beast. Except perhaps in their being unfaithful to their respective genres. Some shots have a documentary feel to them. I think they were […]

10 things about Michel Houellebecq’s The Possibility of an Island

The Possibility of an Island is a novel about a comedian and writer named Daniel. We read what appears to be Daniel’s diary entries. In between the entries are diary entries written by a clone of Daniel, hundreds or thousands of years in the future, commenting on the original Daniel’s writing. The clones perform endless […]

10 things about Panos Cosmatos’ Beyond the Black Rainbow

Beyond the Black Rainbow is Panos Cosmatos’ first and only film. The film is about a girl named Elena trapped in Arboria, some sort of new age hospital. The events take place in 1983, though there is a flashback to 1966. The founder of the hospital is dying. A younger doctor, Barry Nyle, seems to […]

10 things about Edward Bernays’ Propaganda

Edward Bernays, the nephew of Sigmund Freud, was an Austrian-American propagandist who is credited with the development of public relations in America. He is largely responsible for the shift from information based advertising (buy this car because it is the safest and most fuel efficient) to desire and emotion based advertising (buy this car because […]