Against Everything is a thought-provoking study and essential guide to the vicissitudes of everyday life under twenty-first-century capitalism. Mark Greif is one of the most exciting writers of his generation. In this invigorating collection, he challenges us to rethink the ordinary world and take life seriously - in short, to stay honest in dishonest times. In a series of coruscating set pieces he asks why we put ourselves through the pains of exercise, what our concerns about diet or sex does for our fundamental worth, what political identity the hipster might possess, and what happens to us when we listen to Radiohead or hip-hop. Counter-intuitive and revelatory in his insights, Greif revels in the contradictions arising between our desires and the excuses we make to console ourselves. His work demands we have the courage to be 'against everything', to change our vantage on everyday life, find it wanting and demand something better.
Mark Greif is a founder and editor of the journal n+1. He lives and works in New York, where he is Associate Professor of literary studies at the New School. His criticism and journalism have appeared in publications including the London Review of Books, Guardian, TLS, and New Statesman. He is the author of the hugely acclaimed The Age of the Crisis of Man.
CONTENTSPrefaceIAgainst ExerciseAfternoon of the Sex ChildrenOn FoodOctomom and the Market in BabiesIIThe Concept of Experience(The Meaning of Life, Part I)IIIRadiohead, or the Philosophy of PopPunk: The Right Kind of PainLearning to RapIVGut- Level Legislation, or Redistribution(The Meaning of Life, Part II)VThe Reality of Reality TelevisionWeTubeWhat Was the Hipster?VIAnaesthetic Ideology(The Meaning of Life, Part III)VIIMogadishu, Baghdad, Troy, or Heroes Without WarSeeing Through PoliceVIIIThoreau Trailer Park(The Meaning of Life, Part IV)