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  • Camping can make us feel a powerful connection to nature and our rugged backwoods forebears. Campers once confronted the elemental facts of life, but now, the millions of Americans taking to the road on camping trips are more likely to drive to a campground, hook up service conduits, connect to WiFi, drop their awnings, and set out patio chairs. It is as if, Martin Hogue observes, each campsite functions as a stage upon which campers perform a series of ritualized activities (pitching the tent, building a fire, cooking over flames). In Thirtyfour Campgroundsoperating in the tradition of Ed Ruscha and the Bechers—Hogue investigates these sites offering a photographic and typological survey of nearly 6,500 American campsites, mapping subtle differences within the apparently identical. In honor of National Park Week, Martin Hogue discusses his quirky and innovative book.

    What inspired Thirtyfour Campgrounds?

    Thirtyfour Campgrounds is a book about camping, campgrounds and campsites, but I myself am not much of a camper nor do I profess a great love for the outdoors. The book I wrote is not strictly intended for scholars and practitioners of the craft, but also meant for a broader audience of art and design professionals.

    Posted at 03:00 pm on Fri, 21 Apr 2017 in art, landscape
  • The MIT Press is proud to announce its partnership with the March for Science, a series of events across the country planned to coincide with Earth Day on April 22, 2017. The Press’s commitment to publishing rigorous, cutting-edge scientific research through its books and journals aligns with the March’s mission to promote “publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity.” We are pleased to lend our voice to this important cause.

    For more information, please visit the March for Science page.

    Posted at 10:15 am on Wed, 19 Apr 2017 in MIT, science
  • We are back for National Poetry Month! This week we're looking at French poet and painter Francis Picabia.  

    Posted at 11:00 am on Mon, 17 Apr 2017 in literature & poetry, national poetry month
  • We note, with sadness, the passing of Mitchell Glickstein on March 14, at the age of 85. Glickstein was the author of Neuroscience: A Historical Introduction, one of the few works to introduce the topic not through basic principles but through the story of its birth and development.

    Posted at 04:12 pm on Thu, 13 Apr 2017 in
  • We are celebrating National Library Week with Fantasies of the Library, a book that imagines the library as both the keeper of books and curator of ideas—as a platform of the future. The following excerpt from Anna-Sophie Springer and Etienne Turpin's Introduction explains how and why the project came together. 

    Like libraries, there are many kinds of fantasies, so which should you expect to encounter? We have set out to create a book about the library as a curatorial space—a physical knowledge infrastructure organized as the veritable index of cultural and epistemological orders and aspirations, but also as a virtual domain of possibilities for other orders, logics, and dispositions. Whether the fantasy is best characterized by the ambition for a correct and complete ordering of knowledge, or by the attempt to remake inherited orders in pursuit of less authoritarian styles of learning, we leave up to you to decide. But, before you begin, we want to share with you a few remarks about the book itself.

    Posted at 01:42 pm on Thu, 13 Apr 2017 in information science, library
  • In the conclusion of Ivan Ascher's interview about Portfolio Society: On the Capitalist Mode of Prediction, the author discusses the definition of neoliberalism, the book's cover art, Donald Trump, and more.

    Since this book is published in Zone’s Near Futures Series, which is considering the consequences of neoliberalism: how do you define neoliberalism?

    Frankly, I tend to stay away from definitional debates over what constitutes neoliberalism properly so called. There is much to be said for recognizing neoliberalism as a distinct class project, and there is much to be said for recognizing it as a distinct form of rationality. Both strike me as reasonable approaches, so long as they help us acknowledge the continuities and discontinuities between our contemporary formations and what came before. I suppose I am closer to Wendy Brown’s line of thinking than to David Harvey’s, but I don’t think one always has to choose. My own contribution is to focus on one particular aspect of the story, which is financialization.

    Posted at 09:00 am on Wed, 12 Apr 2017 in history, political science
  • April is for poets! All month, we’ll be bringing you excerpts each week from one of our books to celebrate National Poetry Month.  

    And we know what you’re thinking… MIT Press publishes poetry?? Indeed we do, just with our very own twist!

    This week we're featuring an excerpt from Aesthetic Animism by David Jhave Johnston. This book explores the concept of digital poetry. Digital poems don't have authors or stanzas. They are found in ads, conceptual art, interactive displays, performative projects, games, or apps. Poetic tools include algorithms, browsers, social media, and data. Code blossoms into poetic objects and poetic proto-organisms. In his book, Johnston asks the reader to think about the difference between traditional poetry and digital poetry. 

    Posted at 03:15 pm on Mon, 10 Apr 2017 in literature & poetry, national poetry month
  • Ivan Ascher discusses his book, Portfolio Society: On the Capitalist Mode of Prediction, a bold extension of Marx’s Capital for the twenty-first century: at once a critique of modern finance and of the societies under its spell.

    You suggest the excesses of capitalism might not have led to ruin for so many. As you write, “While it may be that the pursuit of profit is a defining constant in the history of capitalism, the precise forms of exploitation and predation that it produces are not.” Could you discuss this point?

    What I meant is simply that we must distinguish between what is old and what is new in today’s financialized capitalism. While I take the pursuit of profit to be a constant in capitalism, almost by definition, I also think the specific terms under which this profit is pursued can vary. Specifically, where the wage relation was once the main site of both profit-making and political struggle, it now seems the credit relation has taken its place—at least in much of the global North.

    Posted at 04:41 pm on Tue, 04 Apr 2017 in history, political science
  • Great news! Annoucing a new collaboration with MIT Sloan Management Review. 

    MIT Sloan Management Review and MIT Press are teaming up to launch a new line of books exploring technology’s impact on management. When we launched MIT SMR's Frontiers section in the spring of 2016, we did so with the intention of leading the conversation about how technology is reshaping the practice of management. Combined advancements in data and analytics, cloud technology, artificial intelligence, and other emerging technologies promise to leave not a single management function untransformed in the years directly ahead. Digital is the organizational issue of our time.

    Posted at 02:30 pm on Tue, 04 Apr 2017 in MIT Sloan Management Review, MIT SMR
  • The University of Sydney School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry announced the winners of the David Harold Tribe Philosophy Prize on March 3rd. We are pleased to announce that Colin Klein, author of What the Body Commands, was one of the joint winners.

    Posted at 01:00 pm on Thu, 30 Mar 2017 in award
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Books, news, and ideas from MIT Press

The MIT PressLog is the official blog of MIT Press. Founded in 2005, the Log chronicles news about MIT Press authors and books. The MIT PressLog also serves as forum for our authors to discuss issues related to their books and scholarship. Views expressed by guest contributors to the blog do not necessarily represent those of MIT Press.