Reconstruction 10.3 (2010)

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Benjamin Balthaser recently received his Ph.D in Literature from UC San Diego, and will start this fall as Assistant Professor of U.S. Multi-Ethnic Literature at Indiana-University South-Bend. His dissertation addresses the way mass culture incorporates and transforms transnational labor movements in the first half of the 20th century. His critical and creative work has appeared or is forthcoming in American Quarterly, Minnesota Review, Left Curve, Cultural Logic and elsewhere. [article]

Roberta Buiani is an educator and a media activist, working at the intersection between the arts, science and technology. She has a Master in Art History and a PhD in Communication and Culture both from York University (Toronto, Canada). Her work on viral tactics and new forms of creative activism has been published on Public (31, 2005, special issue Digital Poetics and Politics), Fibreculture (2.2005), the Spam Book (Hampton Press, 2009), and the Semiotics Review of Books (19. 2010). Her new British-sponsored project “Marginalized: images of viruses and the culture of contagion” explores politics of gender and race (and how the artistic and activist community responds to them) in the scientific visualization of viruses and infectious diseases. [article]

Gretchen Coombs’ interests include art and social criticism/activism, specifically recent art practices that challenge social structures within an urban context. As a doctoral candidate, she has worked closely with artists and scholars who are immersed in new ways of theorizing activist practices in order to gain deeper insights into understanding the institutionalization of art and social engagement - or "social practices" - in San Francisco. This work has helped shape her doctoral thesis in Anthropology at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. She has taught undergraduate and graduate courses at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and Queensland College of Art in Brisbane. Gretchen’s “conversation” with artist and cultural critic Guillermo Gómez-Peña will be published in his forthcoming book (2010), Conversations Across Borders. Gretchen currently resides in Brisbane, Australia, and works as an editor for Queensland Univsersity of Technology. [article]

Roderick Coover is a multimedia documentary maker and scholar. He makes films and video such as Verite to Virtual (DER, 2008), The Theory of Time Here (Video Data Bank, 2007) and The Language of Wine (, 2005) as well as interactive projects for disc, exhibition and the Web, including Cultures in Webs (Eastgate Systems, 2003), Outside/Inside (American Philosophical Society Museum2007), Unknown Territories ( 2010). Coover's essays are published in journals of film, anthropology and digital culture, and he is the co-editor of the forthcoming book, Switching Codes: Thinking through Digital Technologies in the Humanities and Arts (Chicago, 2011). His awards include USIS-Fulbight, LEF Foundation and Mellon Foundation grants, among others. Coover is Associate Professor of Film and Media Arts at Temple University in Philadelphia, where he teaches media arts, visual research and critical theory. URL: [article]

Rob Cover is lecturer in the School of Humanities, The University of Adelaide, South Australia. He researches and publishes on queer theory, digital media, social networking, sexuality and youth studies. His PhD in media theory and queer theory was completed at Monash University (Melbourne). [article]

Ann Deslandes is a researcher and writer from Sydney, Australia who writes a blog from Flat Seven ( [article]

Tori Egherman lived and worked in Iran for four years and is co-author of the photography book Iran: View from Here( an editor of the book Hope, Votes & Bullets, which is now out in the Netherlands ( She is currently working with Arseh Sevom (, an organization dedicated to promoting civil society in Iran and related communities. Her previous piece for Reconstruction, My Life in the Panopticon: Blogging from Iran, was published under the name of Esther Herman in 2006 ( [article]

Barbara Foley teaches English and American Studies at Rutgers University, Newark Campus. Her most recent book is Wrestling with the Left: The Making of Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man (forthcoming from Duke University Press, 2010). She serves on the steering committee of the Radical Caucus of the Modern Language Association (MLA) and the manuscript committee of Science & Society. [article]

Deanna Grant-Smith is a PhD candidate in the Griffith School of Environment, Griffith University, Australia. Her doctoral research focuses on public participation in the definition and management of ‘unspeakable’ policy problems, with a particular emphasis on those associated with the regulation of sewage. [article]

Tim Hall has published fiction and poetry in The Trojan Horse (Cornell), The Atlantic Monthly, The Workers’ Advocate, and Struggle. He has published numerous journalistic and theoretical articles in The Movement (San Francisco SNCC), The Southern Patriot, The Workers’ Advocate and Communist Voice and has written scores of agitational leaflets. In 1967 Tim published a short collection entitled Poems, which circulated in rural west Tennessee. An appreciation of Lightnin Hopkins’ unparalleled album Texas Bluesman was published by Pemmican. He is in the process of publishing a book of early stories, poems and plays entitled Before the Storm, which will be followed by a collection of early poetry Thirteen Ways of Looking at the 60s and then by a large collection of his proletarian poetry, Working People, Why Still Slave? He has been working on a lengthy, multi-novel chronicle project of fiction on the revolutionary tradition in the U.S.

Tim Hall has lived in the inner city of Detroit since 1970 where he currently has an underwater mortgage and an extensive network of friends. He is an accomplished guitarist and singer in several blues and folk traditions and has performed at area clubs and on public radio in Detroit. He is a distance swimmer and is a founding member of Motor City Bass Anglers, an African American tournament fishing club. He is divorced, with a daughter and two grandchildren living in Manteca, California. [article]

Matthew D. Hoffman is currently an intern at C-LAB, The Columbia Laboratory for Architectural Broadcasting, an experimental research unit devoted to the development of new forms of communication in architecture, set up as a semi-autonomous think and action tank at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University. Matthew received a Bachelors of Architecture from Penn State University and his senior thesis, titled ART MEADOW: The Feral Artscape, outlines a movement towards a new experience and immersion in Art in the form of a massive urban playground. Recipient of multiple awards for his architectural design and research, his work addresses issues of architecture in the greater context of media & cultural theory, with an emphasis on non-traditional interactivity and applied digital applications. [article]

Emily Leger is a Canadian artist, musician, writer, educator, and special needs home therapist. In 2002, she won an emerging artist scholarship to attend the annual Sidney Kahn Summer Institute in New York in partnership with Sarah Lawrence College. She has published a research paper about her own art-practice, "Performing Childhood Trauma" in Wreck: Graduate Journal of Art History, Visual Art & Theory (2004). In addition, Emily works as a home therapist with young children who have Autism Spectrum Disorder and other Pervasive Developmental Delays.

See samples of original music compositions at [article]

Hikmet Sidney Loe's masters thesis on Robert Smithson's earthwork the Spiral Jetty (1996, Hunter College, CUNY) has led to a passionate interest in land art and the landforms of the desert west. Her cumulative work, The Spiral Jetty and Rozel Point: Rotating Through Time and Place, is scheduled for publication in 2011 (Utah State University Press). Loe recently curated the exhibition, Mirror Images: Great Salt Lake for Westminster College's Great Salt Lake Institute, presenting 40 contemporary views of Utah's inland sea. She is a regular contributor to the online magazine 15 Bytes ( and teaches art history at Westminster College in Salt Lake City. [article]

Michael Marchman is an economic and labor geographer and yet another underpaid, underemployed PhD candidate piecing together adjunct teaching jobs to pay his rent. [article]

Larry McCaffery is a literary critic, editor, and retired professor of English and Comparative Literature at San Diego State University. His work focuses on post-modern literature, science fiction, and contemporary fiction. He has edited notable anthologies including Storming the Reality Studio (Duke University Press, 1991), Avant-Pop: Fiction for a Daydream Nation (Black Ice Books, 1993) and After Yesterday's Crash (Penguin Books, 1997), among others. McCaffery lives in Borrego Springs, CA. [article]

Joana Ozorio de Almeida Meroz graduated in 2009 from the Design Academy Eindhoven, and is currently a ‘Visual Arts, Media and Architecture’ MPhil student at the VU University Amsterdam, where she is focusing her research on the politics of aesthetics of social design. [article]

Jeff Nall is a doctoral candidate in Comparative Studies, Feminism, Gender, and Sexuality at Florida Atlantic University (FAU), Boca Raton. He holds a Graduate Certificate in Women’s Studies from FAU and a Master of Liberal Studies from Rollins College. He is currently a philosophy instructor at Indian River State College. Nall has articles in two recently released edited collections: Beyond Burning Bras: Feminist Activism for Everyone (2010 ABC-CLIO) and Religion and the New Atheism: A Critical Appraisal (2010 Brill Academic Publishers). [article]

Lance Newman is Associate Professor of English at Westminster College of Salt Lake City, where he teaches Early American Literature, Environmental Literature, and Creative Writing. He has also worked as a river guide since 1991, leading rafting trips in Southeastern Utah and in Grand Canyon. He is the author of Our Common Dwelling: Henry Thoreau, Transcendentalism, and the Class Politics of Nature (Palgrave, 2005), Transatlantic Romanticism: An Anthology of American, British, and Canadian Literature, 1767-1867 (Longman, 2006), and of Sullen Fires Across the Atlantic: Essays in Transatlantic Romanticism (Romantic Circles, 2006). His poems have appeared in 1913, Dusie, Fringe, New CollAge, nthposition, otoliths, Pemmican, Zyzzyva, and many other magazines. He is the author of two chapbooks, Come Kanab (Dusi-e/chaps Kollectiv, 2007) and 3by3by3 (Beard of Bees, 2010), both available free on the web. [article]

Gregory Norton is a Chicago writer from the multinational slum, Uptown, who has served as an activist in the civil rights, peace, and labor movements. He has also served as an organizer and editor for the United Steelworkers. His book of short stories, An Infinity of Days in the Psychotic Atomik Empire, was published in 2007 by Plain View Press. These are stories collected from a wide variety of literary magazines. He also self-published a novel that describes a real historical wildcat strike in South Chicago, There Ain’t No Justice, Just Us.

Partial short story publication credits include publication in the following literary magazines. The Princeton Arts Review, George and Mertie's Place, Tarpaulinsky, whimperbang, Rockford Review, Nebo, Missing Spoke Press Anthology, Struggle, Writer's Corner, Oyez Review, Short Story Bimonthly, Slugfest, Jack the Daw, Mobius: A Journal of Social Change, Thunder Sandwich, Cooweescoowee, and Plum Biscuit. In addition he has earned creative non-fiction and poetry publication credits.

As a thoroughgoing “outsider” writer who was born into an industrial working class family, my writing is also informed by being a member of the Vincennois community of southwestern Indiana, centered on the old French provincial capital of Vincennes. He was born in a nearby town where his grandparents lived across the street from the old French Club. They were holding Mardi Gras in Vincennes in 1732, a full 30 years before the first Acadiens arrived in Louisiana. Our French is distinguished by the nearly extinct “pays de Illinois” accent.

He is a member of the Chicago Writers Association (CWA) as well as that great rebel Generation of 1968. He has had leadership involvement in university student strikes, mass anti-war demonstrations, sanctioned AFL-CIO strikes, unsanctioned wildcat strikes, and mass civil rights actions. At last glance his FBI file was up to 38 pages which, of course, is nothing compared to those who have given their lives for the liberation of humanity or those who remain rotting in prisons.

He has participated in frequent readings sponsored by the CWA. Plain View Press has set him up for readings at AWP. For more information his web site can be found at [article]

Mark Nowak, a 2010 Guggenheim fellow, is an experimental writer, labor activist, and editor of the influential journal Xcp: Cross-Cultural Poetics. He is the author of three books from Coffee House Press: Revenants (2000), Shut Up Shut Down (2004), and Coal Mountain Elementary (2009), and co-editor with Diane Glancy of an anthology of Native poetry and poetics, Visit Teepee Town: Native Writings After the Detours (1999), also with Coffee House. His collection of essays from Palm Press, ¡Workers of the Word, Unite and Fight! (2005), discusses the potential roles of poetry in activism, his work with the Union of Radical Workers and Writers in fighting unfair labor practices among large book retailers, and the idea of organizing poetry collectives among workers around the world. He blogs at Coal Mountain. [article]

Marcus Schulzke is a PhD candidate in political science at the State University of New York at Albany. His primary research interests are political theory and comparative politics, with special attention to contemporary political theory and political violence. He is currently working on a dissertation about how soldiers make moral decision in combat. [article]

Jeff Shantz is a long time community and workplace organizer. He currently teaches critical theory and community advocacy at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Vancouver, Canada. [article]

Paris Smith is from Chicago. Born under the sun sign Leo in the early 1950s. Started writing seriously as a teenager. Worked numerous jobs, including being an animal handler, newspaper editor/journalist, medical research project leader, jazz musician. Two collections of short stories by Paris Smith, in which the above stories appear, are available. Subterreanean Tales (2000) and Shadow Worlds (2001) can be ordered from Oracle Books and Records, Inc., PO Box 5491, Chicago, IL 60680. A novel, Shafi Doldi (2006) is available from Penknife Press at Paris has a new story collection forthcoming in the fall, 2010. Works have appeared in numerous literary and commercial magazines and journals. Inspired by the writings of Richard Wright, Hermann Hesse, and Albert Camus. Studied Marxist theory and participates in activist organizations. Currently a member of STOP (Southside Together Organizing for Power). [article]

Micah M. White is an activist and writer. He has appeared on Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher and his innovative activism has been featured in the AP, the Chronicle for Higher Education, the New York Times and Teen People. A Contributing Editor at Adbusters, Micah's writings reach an international audience of over 100,000. Micah is pursuing a PhD from the European Graduate School, where he has had seminars with internationally renowned philosophers Giorgio Agamben, Alain Badiou, Judith Butler, Michael Hardt, Jacques Rancière, Avital Ronell, and Slavoj Žižek. Micah lives in Berkeley, CA and is writing a book about the future of activism. [article]

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