I haven't dropped off the face of the earth, tho I haven't been in this space for a while. Much has been going on, some of it not so good – bad, heart-rending even – and some of it just plain busyness. Some work has gotten done, & other things have been left undone.
I sense Culture Industry may be at a crossroads. That is, my always-divided attention may finally have stretched to the breaking point, so that something has to give. Or this may just be another hiatus. No, I'm not migrating full-time to Twitter. After a bit of dabbling in that medium, I realize that I'm simply not all that interested in coming up with 140-character pithinesses. Even the sometimes joyous give-&-take of Facebook has seemed kind of spastic lately, a poor substitute for sitting down and talking to someone face to (non-virtual) face, or for thinking one's way thru a problem on paper or screen.
And Ba'al help me, I've become official. That is, after 15 years of avoiding administrative posts like the plague, I've accepted a position of responsibility in my department, one of those jobs that looks nice on the resume & gives one an illusory sense of power & dumps a dozen new emails in one's lap every morning. Is it kosher for the Director of Graduate Studies in the English Department of Our Fair University to maintain a blog that badmouths eminences in the academy & the government? That muses awkwardly on literary & cultural issues? Heaven knows I've been embarrassed enough times by grad students quoting or paraphrasing something I'd offhandedly tossed off in this space, & a couple of times I've intemperately given away the talking points for an entire seminar half a week beforehand.
Even the conversation on the blogosphere, as lively as it remains, has for the moment lost its luster. Perhaps it's time to hunker down, sift thru the papers that need sifting thru, & issue an occasional communique. So consider this a brief wave from the bunker.
Update 3/30: Reading this, what looks like Ron Silliman's farewell the blogging platform, actually nudges me in the direction of wanting to write more in this space.