paper trail

Apr 8, 2010 @ 6:00:00 am

Mark E. Smith

A university exhibit and new book highlight David Foster Wallace's life and work, and Scott McLemee visits the relics: "A writer who kills himself runs the risk—and he must have known this—of having his life and work turned into one long suicide note."

Scholar Tariq Ramadan returns to the U.S. for the first time since he was barred from the country by the Bush Administration in 2004. He chats with author Ian Buruma, Slate editor Jacob Weisberg, and war reporter George Packer tonight at Cooper Union's "Secularism, Islam, and Democracy: Muslims in Europe and the West." 

Performing songs like "Coca Cola Douche" won't preclude you from being covered by the Wall Street Journal: if nothing else, poet, Fugs member, and all-around countercultural juggernaut Ed Sanders has proven that much.

Big news for spy-novel fans: The Mysterious Bookshop owner Otto Penzler is auctioning off part of his 60,000-volume collection; there's never been a better time to brush up on your William Le Queux.

Don't get us started about mix tapes. All of our teenage lust, angst, and ungodly passion for jangly, jagged music was channeled through said ninety-minute analog wonders, and rambling about them now just makes us feel old. So we were dismayed to see Flavorwire's ten-song mixtape for "English majors and other word nerds." We don't care about the New Yorker-endorsed tykes Vampire Weekend, the glorified jam-band Built to Spill, or a slightly past-their-prime Magnetic Fields. But the last song on the list, The Fall's "Repetition," is worthy of a mention for its literary merits alone—singer Mark E. Smith's lyrics deserve a Booker award or two, or, at the very least, the undiluted adulation of bloggers everywhere. But forget tape hiss and old song lists; Flavorwire isn't all about nostalgia—they also provide a very handy list of 10 Book Types You Should Follow on Twitter.