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Weekend Reading List

What chicken nuggets tell us about capitalism, breaking Steve Bannon's spell, and the power of left-wing melancholia: what to read this weekend

Courtesy: spacebarpark and Flickr, Creative Commons

Courtesy: spacebarpark and Flickr, Creative Commons

Courtesy: spacebarpark and Flickr, Creative Commons

  • Ned Resnikoff writes in The Baffler on Steve Bannon’s gift for cultivating an aura of profundity, and the pundit class that enabled it: it’s a lesson in how crackpot racism acquires scholarly respectability. Bannon’s displays of fake learning are nothing more than ‘Wikipedia white nationalism’ – and he’s a master of it.
     
  • A new exhibition in Hong Kong showcases state-serving visual arts from the DPRK.
     
  • The melancholy leftist tradition of mourning over past defeat is nothing new – but does this unhappy condition also hold a redemptive power?
     
  • Here at frieze, we’re kicking off our set of reflections on 2017 – for art historian Ian Bourland it’s been a year marked by new visualizations, both controversial and celebrated, of the black body.
     
  • And don’t miss Andrew Durbin’s dispatch from Miami Art Week, in ‘an era of harried flight': openings at the new ICA, The Bass and PAMM played out against a backdrop of global and atmospheric uncertainty.
     
  • Over at Dissent, Sarah Jaffe speaks to the authors of a new book, A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things (2017) – and how the chicken nugget embodies nature, money, work, care, food, energy and lives in the Capitalocene.
     
  • Finally, Jiayang Fan reports on China’s selfie obsession.
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