Category Archives: readings

Silt

Silt Stephen Burt Things you know but can’t say, the sort of things, or propositions that build up week after week at the end of the day, & have to be dredged by the practical operators so that their grosser … Continue reading

Posted in environment, literature, ports, readings | Leave a comment

Pirate Jenny: Labour and capital in Khor Fakkan

14 February 2015 in Khor Fakkan port After several hours of watching the unloading of the ship, and after walking on the port to go to the duty-free shop (to buy a new memory card for my camera), it is … Continue reading

Posted in Allan Sekula, capital accumulation, environment, labour, logistics, Middle East, readings, transport, Travels | Leave a comment

Machineries of Joy: Wrestling with the technological sublime

This one is for my friends Rachel Shabi and Waleed Hazbun, who might recognise something of the pathos of our common paternal utopias in it… 11 February 2015 “Hyperbole is the main stock in trade of publicists, boosters and even … Continue reading

Posted in Allan Sekula, capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, infrastructure, logistics, Middle East, political economy, readings, the sublime, transport, Travels | Leave a comment

A Bunch of Lonesome Heroes: The factory at sea

9 February 2015 20.00 “Going forward and glancing over the weather bow, [… the] prospect was unlimited, but exceedingly monotonous and forbidding; not the slightest variety that I could see.” Herman Melville, Moby Dick For the next few days, we … Continue reading

Posted in Allan Sekula, capital accumulation, labour, literature, Melville, Middle East, political economy, readings, seafaring, shipping conditions, transport, Travels | Leave a comment

Reading Capital 2 on a containership

8 February 2015 You begin to realise how much Marx actually crafted his writing when you compare Capital I to Capital II.  The former is beautifully edited, funny, extensively footnoted, erudite, and with a gorgeous narrative structure that inexorably push … Continue reading

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Shim El-Yasmine: Suez Canal

8 February 2015 “the great current of human inclination is to enjoyment.”  Karl Marx, Capital Vol. II I want to be more jaded.  After all, my nautical venture is an all-expenses-paid research trip – the best of both worlds: doing … Continue reading

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Peace Frog: Conquest by infrastructure

6 February 2015 I have to admit that I prefer Braudel’s longue durée over his histoire événtmentielle: Perhaps his influence runs through all the great historical accounts written since 1949, where explanations and theoretical framings are comfortably married to historiographic … Continue reading

Posted in infrastructure, logistics, militaries, readings, war | Leave a comment