Belated But In This Case...

... Certainly better than not at all.

The Baffler is back (and maybe has been for a while - I gave up checking the website years ago).

In case you don't know, the Baffler is a sporadically-published journal of social thought that existed mostly in the 90s and is(?)/was edited partially by Thomas Frank, who wrote some good essays and then books about the commdofication of culture back when most journalists were still "swingin' on the flippity flop with Sub Pop"* before shifting his focus to government. Especially in the 90s, The Baffler was refreshing in lacking the influence of cultural relativism and certain "French people". Check out the new essays but also be prepared to spend some time with the .pdfs of older issues, too. At least as concerned with the forest as the trees, some of those critical essays are, sadly, not as outdated as they should be.

*Plenty of Euro-Marxists were writing about that subject before Frank was even born but whereas if the focus of some of those writers might have been the contrast between high culture and the mass culture disseminated by corporations, Frank's journal, influenced by the seemingly-discredited notion that pop music could change the world, worked to contrast the mass folk culture of post-Punk (chronologically, not necessarily stylistically) Indie rock (call it Version 1.0 - the version that asked something of its participants instead of constantly reorganizing itself around their whims) against the very same mass culture that caused Adorno, et al, so much pain.

(of course the 60s and 70s and 80s happened too, but the 90s were different - you just gotta go read for yourself)

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