A Message from Lars Iyer:
William Large and I will be discussing the Spurious trilogy (among other things) at the Cumberland pub in Byker (http://www.thecumberlandarms.co.uk/ ), Newcastle on Thurs 6th July at 9PM. We’ll be in the upstairs function room (free entry). The discussion is part of the Shared Futures conference held here in the School of English (http://www.englishsharedfutures.uk/ ). An abstract for our discussion follows below.
We’ll be in town having a bite to eat beforehand at Dat Bar (http://datbar.gustouk.com/wordpress/ ). Do join us from 7.00 or so and we can travel together to the Cumberland.
Abstract: The Humour of Failure: Laughing at the Achievement Society
What does failure mean? Are you a failure? Do you find it difficult to remain upbeat and engaged? Does your capacity to hope seem merely a mocking reminder of your powerlessness?
In our world, what matters is success. We live in an achievement society, governed by a pressure to achieve and a stifling positivity. We are supposed to be entrepreneurs of ourselves – individual micro-enterprises, constantly networking and optimising skills. But this means burn-out and depression are never far away.
In this discussion, Lars Iyer and William Large, aka the fictional characters Lars and W. of Lars Iyer’s Spurious trilogy (Melville House, 2011-13), consider how humour might permit a tactics of withdrawal from contemporary opportunism and cynicism.