Articles by Matt Seidel

April 26, 2017

That Glorious Syllable: On ‘On’ 1

A preposition wrapped in an adverb wrapped in an enigma, on is a tiny word, yet it contains multitudes.

March 17, 2017

The League of Extraordinary Critics 0

Hume was sued after putting George Plimpton in a chokehold, convinced that one of the dilettante’s witticisms was cribbed from a Martial epigram. Hume wouldn’t release him until two Commentary editors and William Styron assured him that the bon mot was most definitely a Plimpton original.

March 13, 2017

Poetry in Motion 2

If you should ever come across me on the path and see in my halting stride and grim-faced muttering a defeated man, know that the “viewless wings of Poesy” are transporting me and my aching feet to a better place.

February 27, 2017

Mark O’Connell Doesn’t Want to Be a Cyborg: The Millions Interview 3

I think that artificial intelligence, when it comes — and it will come, I believe — is going to displace huge numbers of workers. And that’s a crisis, but it’s also a crisis that’s inherent in the logic of capitalism.

February 8, 2017

Checking Out: Dispatches From the Sea-Cave Suite and Elsewhere 0

After a nice long think in the grotto shower, I resolved, once back on dry land, to conduct a survey of recent, or recently reissued, novels that make their home, so to speak, in hotels.

December 3, 2016

A Year in Reading: Matt Seidel 1

In one section, a series of nude women bathe in green water, in blue water, in communal or private tubs, posed in foot baths or sticking their arms in an octopus-like contraption of pipes and funnels. What Whitmanian raptures, or hygienic tips, does the surrounding text reveal?

September 2, 2016

American Appetites: A Fiction Review in Three Courses 0

Each of these books is predominantly about appetite — for food, sex, fame, money, adventure — and its potential wasting effect on the human soul.

April 27, 2016

Everybody Stinks: The Life and Work of a Failed Southern Lady 3

Florence King was at heart a Randian libertarian, seeing identity politics as antithetical to her sacred sense of individualism and thus worthy of scorn.

April 13, 2016

Lurid Tales of Crime and Aristocratic Extravagance 1

The primary pleasure in Making Monte Carlo comes from watching the various eccentrics, lowlifes, high-rollers, and famous artists — Edvard Munch, Karl Marx, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Coco Chanel — stroll in to take a seat at the table.

March 23, 2016

Men in Tights Crammed into Confined Spaces 1

Bachelder’s portrait of middle-class, middle-aged males revolves around football. Full disclosure: In my version of hell, scowling football coaches pace up and down the River Styx, their steady barking of martial commands only interrupted to consult their laminated sheets on which every possible variation on the off-tackle running play is written.