Two Bodies of Comedy: On Friedrich Nietzsche & Robert Walser’s Bodies of Comedy

Nietzsche was obsessed with the relationship of the body to thought.   And whenever he articulated his reading of the body, he always made sure to put it forth in what Peter Sloterdijk (winking at Diogenes) called a “cheeky” manner.  He looked to offend and this gesture, for Nietzsche, was healthy.    In the beginning of his […]

He Says I Look Like a Jew: Anti-Semitism, Misfortune, and Crypto-Jewishness in Robert Walser’s “Jakob Von Gunten”

  What I love about a great novelist is his or her ability to surprise the reader.  However, sometimes the surprise throws everything the reader thought about the writer into question.  This is especially prescient when the main character of his or her novels is often someone we find charming, pitiable, and yet insightful.  What […]

A New Essay for Berfrois: “How Simple is Simon? Unemployment, Masochism, and Daydreaming in Robert Walser’s “The Tanners”

Click here to see my latest essay for Berfrois:  “How Simple is Simon? Unemployment, Masochism, and Daydreaming in Robert Walser’s “The Tanners.” It takes Robert Walser’s novel, The Tanners as its subject and tests out Walter Benjamin’s reading of poverty and unemployment. As the title suggests, I read Walser through the spectrum of unemployment, daydreaming, and masochism. Since it […]