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Strange Attractor

After seven years of silence, the acclaimed Strange Attractor Journal returns with a characteristically eclectic collection of high weirdness from the margins of culture. Covering previously uncharted regions of history, anthropology, art, literature, architecture, science, and magic since 2004, each Journal has presented new and unprecedented research into areas that scholarship has all too often ignored.

London Cemeteries in Old Photographs

Since they were established in the 1830s, London’s great cemeteries have inspired countless artists and photographers to record their quiet beauty and solemn majesty. 

Not just resting places for the city’s honoured dead, they also serve as great repositories of social, architectural, and geographic history, reflecting our changing attitudes to the great inevitable.

In grunge and tartan, sideshow and magic lantern, Scottish Lost Boys presents Scotland as place and Scotland as idea in the imaginative flights, artistic struggles, and untimely deaths of a singular skeleton leaf clan.

The Haunted Writings of Lionel Johnson, the Decadent Era’s Dark Angel

A lost poet of the decadent era, Lionel Johnson is the shadow man of the 1890s, an enigma “pale as wasted golden hair.” History has all but forgotten Johnson, except as a footnote to the lives of more celebrated characters like W. B. Yeats and Oscar Wilde.

Sonic Spectres & the Object Hereafter

Trees rigged up to the wireless radio heavens. A fax machine used to decode the language of hurricanes. A broadcast ghost that hijacked a television station to terrorize a city. A failed computer factory in the desert with a slap-back echo resounding into ruin.

The Unruly Curiosity of the British Music Press from the ‘60s to the ‘80s… by those who made it happen
Edited by Mark Sinker

In its heyday, from the 1960s to the 1980s, the UK music press was the forging ground for a new critical culture, where readers could encounter anything from comics and cult films to new musical forms and radical underground politics.

A Memoir of Ironfoot Jack, King of the Bohemians

“I became acquainted with gipsies, with show people, with buskers, with people who entertained the public by performing in the city, on fair grounds and market places…and with a variety of “fiddles”—that is, some dubious methods of obtaining the means of life. I became a member of this fraternity.”
—from The Surrender of Silence

Written in the early years of the twenty-first century, when the author was engaged in dream-explorations and mystical practices centered on the Greek Moon goddess Selene, Somnium is an intensely personal fictional tapestry that weaves together numerous historical and stylistic variations on the enduring myth of Selene and Endymion. Ranging through the sixteenth to twenty-first centuries, it combines medieval, Elizabethan, Gothic, and Decadent elements in a fantastic romance of rare imagination.

Strange Tales and Decadent Poems by Count Eric Stanislaus Stenbock

Described by W. B. Yeats as a “scholar, connoisseur, drunkard, poet, pervert, most charming of men,” Count Stanislaus Eric Stenbock (1860–1895) is surely the greatest exemplar of the Decadent movement of the late nineteenth century.

A friend of Aubrey Beardsley, patron of the extraordinary pre-Raphaelite artist Simeon Solomon, and contemporary of Oscar Wilde, Stenbock died at the age of thirty-six as a result of his addiction to opium and his alcoholism, having published just three slim volumes of suicidal poetry and one collection of morbid short stories.

More Strange Fiction and Hallucinatory Tales

Forthcoming from the MIT Press.

The Delirious Cinema of Jesús Franco

Jesús “Jess” Franco is an iconic figure in world cinema. His sexually charged, fearlessly personal style of filmmaking has never been in vogue with mainstream critics, but for lovers of the strange and sado-erotic he is a magician, spinning his unique and disturbing dream worlds from the cheapest of budgets.

A Ge-Ography Primer

In an age of ecological turbulence, our understanding of the hills, rivers and fields we live among is more critical than ever. But what might the academic study of geography fail to teach us, and what relationships to the land might be revealed by reinvestigating the neglected knowledge practices of myth, history and legend?

Reflections on Life, Landscape, and Song

A legendary singer, folklorist, and music historian, Shirley Collins has been an integral part of the folk-music revival for more than sixty years. In her new memoir, All in the Downs, Collins tells the story of that lifelong relationship with English folksong—a dedication to artistic integrity that has guided her through the triumphs and tragedies of her life.
 

The Moon Goddess and the Cave Oracle

Waxing and waning and reborn with each new month, the Moon has always been the supreme symbol of cyclical change in the western world.

Metaphorical representations of the Moon’s goddess also seem to undergo similar changes, each new century reinventing her in its own image. For Hesiod, she was a distant figure in the celestial pantheon, to Keats she was an intimate muse; Selene’s recurring role in music, literature, and song is a powerful testament to our continued fascination with her myth.

Breaking Convention Volume III
Edited by Ben Sessa

Presenting an interdisciplinary selection of twenty-five essays first delivered at Breaking Convention 2015, the third conference on psychedelic consciousness, culture, and clinical research, held at the University of Greenwich, London.

Communiqués from the Guild of Transcultural Studies, 1976-1991

One night in 1976, a group of squatters entered the Cambodian Embassy in London, an opulent building that had remained empty for two years following the bloody revolution of the Khmer Rouge. For the next fifteen years, this peculiar residence would play host to the Guild of Transcultural Studies, an open platform for creative monomaniacs, radical metaphysicians, poets, prophets and exiles.

This book provides a companion to Aleksandra Mir's latest body of work Space Tapestry: Faraway Missions, exhibited at Tate Liverpool and Modern Art Oxford.

Inspired by the Bayeux Tapestry and the anonymous artists who depicted Halley’s Comet in 1066, the Space Tapestry is a large-scale, hand-drawn monochrome wall-hanging that forms an immersive environment. Much like a graphic novel, Space Tapestry tells an episodic visual story of space travel.

Haiti, Horror and The Zombie Complex

There are zombies among us! From the rotting hordes of TV's The Walking Dead to the blockbuster nightmares of World War Z and 28 Days Later, our popular culture is overrun with the ravenous undead.

But where do these strange creatures come from, and what peculiar tales of mesmerism, freemasonry, pig sacrifice and revolution would they tell if they could talk?

It’s the summer of 1989, a time of global flux just before the collapse of the Berlin wall and of South Africa’s apartheid; a time of signs and portents…

Two women see something uncanny in the skies over west London.

Maeve, the wife of the local vicar, finds she has lost nearly an hour of her life. In search of this lost time, she uncovers the memory of an encounter with aliens and, worse, a mysterious event from her childhood in Ireland, which she finally redeems in the underworld of an IRA-connected pub…

The Strange Tale of an Extra-Special Talking Mongoose

“I am the fifth dimension! I am the eighth wonder of the world!”

During the mid-1930s, British and overseas newspapers were full of incredible stories about Gef, a “talking mongoose” or “man-weasel” who had allegedly appeared in the home of the Irvings, a farming family in a remote district of the Isle of Man. The creature was said to speak in several languages, to sing, to steal objects from nearby farms, and to eavesdrop on local people.

A Secret History of The Esoteric Underground

Based on hundreds of hours of interviews with members of the seminal music groups Coil, Current 93, and Nurse With Wound, England’s Hidden Reverse illuminates a shadowy but deeply influential underground scene.

The Tarot Deck of Austin Osman Spare
Edited by Jonathan Allen

In the spring of 2013, a seventy-nine-card, hand-painted tarot deck created c.1906 by the mystic and artist Austin Osman Spare, was identified within the collections of The Magic Circle Museum in London.

Sex, Death and Design in the Digital Regime

The Bright Labyrinth is a subtle and sometimes disturbing account of how technology has impacted upon human culture. Offering a theoretical map for the future development of communication design, The Bright Labyrinth draws upon architecture and film, avant-garde art and critical theory, military strategy and machine intelligence to guide the reader through the Digital Regime that has shaped a century of human creativity and thought.

The World of Tessa Farmer
Edited by Catriona McAra

For almost two decades now, Tessa Farmer has been evolving a new species of fairy. They represent the point at which science tilts into fantasy – as the sleep of reason produces monsters. In Fairyland is the first substantial scholarly volume devoted to Farmer’s work. Here, leading thinkers in the fields of animal art, natural history and gothic studies assemble to investigate the significance of Farmer and her fairies, covering aspects from their relationship to fairy traditions in folklore and art, to entomological precedents for the malevolent behaviours of her creations.

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