University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

Professor Bob Nowlan


About Me



Bob Nowlan


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Professor Bob Nowlan




Fall 2014 Classes:

English 484 and 684, Seminar in Theory and Criticism: Ian Curtis, the Myth and the Music: Critical Theoretical Perspectives, M 6:30-9:15 pm, HHH 222

English 284, Introduction to Theory and Criticism, TR 11 am to 12:15 pm, HHH 206 (Grant Maierhofer, Academic Apprentice)

Writing 116, Blugold Seminar in Critical Reading and Writing, Theme: 'Love', M 11-11:50 am and WF 11 am to 12:50 pm, HHH 206 (Alex Long, Collaborating Teacher)


Spring 2015 Classes:

English 384 and 584, Studies in Theory and Criticism: The Uncanny, The Surreal, and The Fantastic in Twin Peaks, Broadchurch, and Les Revenants,
or Studies in Theory and Criticism: Lacan, Lacanian Psychoanalysis, and Lacanian Critical Theory (To Be Determined), T 6:30-9:15 pm, CEN 1916

English 284, Introduction to Theory and Criticism, MW 3:30-4:45 pm, HHH 222

Writing 116, Blugold Seminar in Critical Reading and Writing, Theme: 'Love', M 11-11:50 am and WF 11 am to 12:50 pm, HHH 222


Major Scholarly Work in Progress:

* Directory of World Cinema: Scotland (Co-Edited with Zach Finch, Intellect's Directory of World Cinema Series, Due Out Fall 2014) *

** Ian Curtis, the Myth and the Music: Critical Theoretical Perspectives **

*** Directory of World Cinema: Scotland 2  (Co-Editing with Zach Finch, Intellect's Directory of World Cinema Series) ***




Some Principal Community Activities:

* DJ, Insurgence, Thursdays 10 pm to Midnight, US Central Time, WHYS, 96.3 FM, Eau Claire Community Radio . . . Progressive Community Radio *

** Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Eau Claire: Member,  Worship Associate, Program Assistant, Worship Services Committee, Membership Committee **



Joy Division--"Shadowplay"

To the centre of the city where all roads meet - waiting for you
To the depths of the ocean where all hopes sank - searching for you
Moving through the silence without motion - waiting for you
In a room with a window in the corner I found truth

In the shadowplay, acting out your own death - knowing no more
As the assassins all grouped in four lines, dancing on the floor
And with cold steel, odour on their bodies, made a move to connect
I could only stare in disbelief as the crowds all left

I did everything, everything I wanted to
I let them use you for their own ends
To the centre of the city in the night - waiting for you
To the centre of the city in the night - waiting for you


Joy Division--"Disorder"

I've been waiting for a guide to come and take me by the hand
Could these sensations make me feel the pleasures of a normal man?
New sensations barely interest me for another day
I've got the spirit, lose the feeling, take the shock away

It's getting faster, moving faster now, it's getting out of hand
On the tenth floor, down the back stairs, it's a no man's land
Lights are flashing, cars are crashing, getting frequent now
I've got the spirit, lose the feeling, let it out somehow

What means to you, what means to me, and we will meet again
I'm watching you, I'm watching her - I take no pity from your friends
Who is right, who can tell, and who gives a damn right now?
Until the spirit, new sensation takes hold - then you know --
[or on all the official live versions:
I've got the spirit, lose the feeling, let it out somehow --]

I've got the spirit, but lose the feeling, feeling, feeling --

***


Principal Areas of Intellectual Interest:

  Critical Theory

  Cinema Studies

Critical Studies in Contemporary Popular Music Cultures

Scottish Studies

Gay and Queer Studies

Mystery, Detective, and Crime Fiction

   19th to 21st Century Social History and Cultural Studies, the Nations and Peoples of the British Isles

  Late 20th to Early 21st Century British and American Drama and Theatre



Ireland
Great Britain  England  Scotland  WalesGermany--Flag
 
Ireland--Four ProvincesOriginal
            Starry Plough

Ireland--Sunburst Flag

Ireland--Starry Plough

Ireland--St. Patrick's Flag

Ireland--Green Flag with Harp 

Wind That Shakes the Barley Version Three


Che Guevera_Remixes Don't Count

ACLU

Eau Claire Progressive Film Festival

WHYS Community Radio, 96.3 FM, Eau Claire

Isle of Man

Socialist Party USA


It is the minorities who have made the history of this world.  It is the few who have had the courage to take their places at the front; who have been true enough to themselves to speak the truth that was in them; who have dared oppose the established order of things; who have espoused the cause of the suffering, struggling poor; who have upheld without regard to personal consequences the cause of freedom and righteousness.  It is they, the heroic, self-sacrificing few who have made the history of the race and who have paved the way from barbarism to civilization.  The many prefer to remain upon the popular side.  They lack the courage and vision to join a despised minority that stands for a principle; they have not the moral fiber that withstands, endures and finally conquers.  They are to be pitied and not treated with contempt for they cannot help their cowardice.  But, thank God, in every age and in every nation there have been the brave and self-reliant few, and they have been sufficient to their historic task; and we, who are here today, are under infinite obligations to them because they suffered, they sacrificed, they went to jail, they had their bones broken upon the wheel, they were burned at the stake and their ashes scattered to the winds by the hands of hate and revenge in their struggle to leave the world better for us than they found it for themselves.  We are under eternal obligations to them because of what they did and what they suffered for us and the only way we can discharge that obligation is by doing the best we can for those who are to come after us.  And this is the high purpose of every Socialist on earth.  Everywhere they are animated by the same lofty principles; everywhere they have the same noble ideals; everywhere they are clasping hands across national boundary lines; everywhere they are calling one another Comrade, the blessed word that springs from the heart of unity and bursts into blossom upon the lips.  Each passing day they are getting into closer touch all along the battle line, waging the holy war of the working class of the world against the ruling and exploiting class of the world. They make many mistakes and they profit by them all.  They encounter numerous defeats, and grow stronger through them all.  They never take a backward step.


    The heart of the international Socialist never beats a retreat.


    They are pressing forward, here, there and everywhere, in all the zones that girdle the globe.  Everywhere these awakening workers, these class-conscious proletarians, these hardy sons and daughters of honest toil are proclaiming the glad tidings of the coming emancipation, everywhere their hearts are attuned to the most sacred cause that ever challenged men and women to action in all the history of the world.  Everywhere they are moving toward democracy and the dawn; marching toward the sunrise, their faces all aglow with the light of the coming day.  These are the Socialists, the most zealous and enthusiastic crusaders the world has ever known. They are making history that will light up the horizon of coming generations, for their mission is the emancipation of the human race. They have been reviled; they have been ridiculed, persecuted, imprisoned and have suffered death, but they have been sufficient to themselves and their cause, and their final triumph is but a question of time.

Eugene V. Debs, From "The Anti-War Speech" [The Speech That Led to His Imprisonment], June 16, 1918, Canton, Ohio
 
* Member, Socialist Party USA *

Half Nlelson

Children of Men 1

The Lives of OthersGoodbye Lenin
Control-1Control-2Control-3

Ian Curtis Joy Division 1Ian Curtis
            Joy Division 2

"Novelty"

Joy Division

Track history

Recorded on May 3rd/4th 1978 at Arrow Studios, Manchester; released on Warsaw
Recorded in July 1979 at Central Sound Studios, Manchester (but not released)
Live performance on July 13th 1979 at The Factory released on Heart and Soul
Recorded in July-August 1979 at Strawberry Studios, Stockport
This version originally released as B-side of "Transmission" single
Also released on Substance, on Permanent and on Heart and Soul

Lyrics
When the people listen to you, don't you know it means a lot
'Cause you've got to work so hard for everything you've got
Can't rest on your laurels now - not when you've got none
You'll find yourself in the gutter, right back where you came from

Someone told me being in the know is the main thing
We all need the security that belonging brings
Can't stand on your own in these times against all the odds
I don't want to act uncool like all the other sods
[or in the later version:
  You'll just fall behind like all the other sods]

In the Heart and Soul live version the previous verse is replaced by:
  Where you gonna run to now? where you gonna hide?
  All the dreams you ever had are tied up deep inside
  Staring in the mirror now, with everything you've seen
  Looking back and telling the crowd just what might have been

You slap our backs and pretend you knew
About all the things that we were gonna do
What ya gonna do, what ya gonna do when it's over?

You're all on your own now - don't you think that it's a shame
But you're the only one responsible to take the blame

The original version concludes:
When ya gonna grow up and act, and be yourself
Cause pretty soon you'll find yourself nailed to the shelf
Grab it while you can, but don't ever relax
Cause there's always someone gonna stab your back
What ya gonna do, what ya gonna do when it's over?

The later versions conclude:
So what ya gonna do when the novelty has gone?
Yeah, what ya gonna do when the novelty has gone?
[or in the Heart and Soul live version: "when the novelty fades away"]
You slap our backs and pretend you knew
About all the things that we were gonna do
What ya gonna do, what ya gonna do when it's over?

Other information
This was a very early Joy Division song which evolved through several lyric changes
The unreleased Central Sound version had two lines not found in other recordings:
  Thinking on your own of the past, of every small mistake
  Never took a chance at all, with everything at stake
Pink Jack 1  Queer Pagan Flag  PACE Flag  Silence=Death


I'm here and I'm queer and I do what I do
And I'm not gonna wear . . . a "straight" jacket for you 
-- Tom Robinson "(Sing If You're) Glad to Be Gay"

 
Vita

Profile

Past Teaching -- Example Syllabi

Insurgence


UW-Eau
              Claire Home

This material is copyrighted (©)    

Professor Bob Nowlan

Last Update: August 20, 2014



DECLARATION OF THE FOUR SACRED THINGS

The earth is a living, conscious being.  In company with cultures of many different times and places, we name these things as sacred: air, fire, water, and earth.

Whether we see them as the breath, energy, blood, and body of the Mother, or as the blessed gifts of  a Creator, or as symbols of the interconnected systems that sustain life, we know that nothing can live without them.

To call these things sacred is to say that they have a value beyond their usefulness for human ends, and they themselves become the standards by which our acts, our economics, our laws, and our purposes must be judged.  No one has the right to appropriate them or profit from them at the expense of others.  Any government that fails to protect them forfeits its legitimacy.

All people, all living things, are part of the earth life, and so are sacred.  No one of us stands higher or lower than any other.  Only justice can assure balance: only ecological balance can sustain freedom.  Only in freedom can that fifth sacred thing we call spirit flourish in its full diversity.

To honor the sacred is to create conditions in which nourishment, sustenance, habitat, knowledge, freedom, and beauty can thrive.  To honor the sacred is to make love possible.

To this we dedicate our curiosity, our will, our courage, our silences, and our voices.  To this we dedicate our lives.

-- From Starhawk, The Fifth Sacred Thing



"Radio Cure"--Wilco--Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Nonesuch Records, 2002

cheer up

honey I hope you can
there is something wrong with me
my mind is filled with silvery stuff
honey kisses clouds of fluff
shoulders shrugging off

cheer up
honey I hope you can
there is something wrong with me
my mind is filled with radio cures
electronic surgical words

picking apples for the kings and queens of things I've
never seen
oh, distance has no way of making love
understandable

cheer up
honey I hope you can
there is something wrong with me
my mind is filled with silvery stars
honey kisses clouds of love

picking apples for the kings and queens of things I've
never seen
oh, distance has no way of making love
understandable
oh, distance has no way of making love
understandable
oh, distance has no way of making love
understandable
oh, distance has no way of making love
understandable

cheer up
honey I hope you can

***************

Anywhere,
any place or road,
There was you.
So I came back.

The Blood Knot -- by Athol Fugard


****************

Don't be playing games
That'll start me playing too
The way shadows cross the line
I may have played more games than you

The dormant violence
Of the subtle mind
Makes the cleanest cut
The hardest cut to find

That part where anger alone
Can't keep it's promise of revenge
It takes the dance with rage
To put fire to that page . . .

From "Spectator"--John Trudell

***************

Don't be content to remain a mere 'spectator' throughout your life, and don't end up recognizing--and regretting--that you 'should have done what you could', but instead merely 'went and did what you would'.    Act up, fight back!  

***************
And remember, don't  surrender to cynicism. as much as temporary--and strategic--cynicism can indeed at recurrent times be both inevitable and useful--because cynicism, especially as a persistent frame of intelligibility, and a predominant structure of feeling,  too often amounts to nothing but the following, hiding beneath a thin veneer of pragmatic 'realism': disillusioned idealism, embittered resignation, intimidated and worn-out withdrawal, and despairing and solipsistic  individualism.  [And this certainly includes cynicism in the guise of ludic postmodern nihilism.  Inquire--and reflect--if you don't know what I mean here.]   In short, cynicism all-too-quickly becomes thoroughly politically reactionary.   Dare to dream--and to work, and struggle, to make dreams reality. 

***************
Believe in your dreams, and take the risk of actively identifying and positively commiting yourself with what your dreams imagine.   "Some men dream dreams of what was and ask 'why?'   I dream dreams of things that never were, and ask 'why not?'" -- Robert Kennedy, adapted from George Bernard Shaw



WORK FOR HUMAN EMANCIPATION, COLLECTIVE EQUALITY, SOCIAL JUSTICE, ECOLOGICAL SUSTAINABILITY, AND A PEACEFUL WORLD!

***

What Do "Progressives" Believe?

1.    Progressives believe that we are all ultimately deeply interconnected,  that the public good should always come before private gain, that we should work together to take care of each other, that we should work together to make a better future for those who come after us, and that we have a responsibility to do so for those who will succeed us.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
 
2.    Progressives  believe we maintain a responsibility to serve as genuine stewards in relation to our larger natural environment while progressives at the same time respect and value the ‘wisdom’ of nature as well as all the ‘wisdom’ of what nature has created and provided.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

3.    Progressives respect and value the wisdom of genuinely popular, or folk, cultures, subcultures, and their customs and traditions as well as their achievements and contributions; progressives support and defend the right of the oppressed and exploited to fight back against their exploiters and oppressors; and progressives seek to assist the relatively disprivileged and disempowered in raising themselves up through their own efforts.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

4.    Progressives believe in genuine, substantive, materially concrete expression of fairness and  equality for all, and progressives sincerely, actively care for those who are relatively disprivileged and disempowered.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

5.    Progressives believe in working actively to overcome exploitative and oppressive disparities in social wealth, social privilege,  and social power. Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
 
6.    Progressives believe in the inherent dignity, worth, and natural equality of all people, regardless of race, ethnicity, or nationality.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise. 

7.    Progressives believe in the inherent dignity, worth, and natural equality of all people, regardless of sex or gender.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

8.    Progressives believe in the inherent dignity, worth, and natural equality of all people, regardless of sexual orientation.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

9.    Progressives believe in the inherent dignity, worth, and natural equality of all people, regardless of age or of physical and mental ability.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

10.    Progressives respect and value the contribution of labor, and of laborers, in producing and reproducing social wealth; progressives reject, oppose, and seek to overcome exploitative and oppressive forms of class difference, and hierarchy, especially that realized through the exploitation of labor, and the private ownership and control of the means, processes, and ends of social wealth; and progressives are ultimately, in essence, anti-capitalist and pro-socialist as well as pro-communist.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

11.    Progressives believe in social responsibility and accountability–and especially in holding those who exploit, and oppress, as well as those who maintain complicity with exploitation and oppression responsible, and accountable, for this wrong, while progressives simultaneously believe in active civic participation, in citizens taking responsibility for our own government, for governing ourselves, and for making government truly the people’s servant and truly serve the people’s interest.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

12.    Progressives believe that genuine community requires that everyone within the community enjoy the freedom to realize their full human potential, and progressives believe that realization of our full human potential as members of a genuine community is in fact only possible for each and every one of us when freedoms can actually be exercised and opportunities are in fact available.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
 
13.    Progressives fight against social alienation, and especially against the forces and conditions which generate this alienation, while progressives at the same time reject, oppose, and seek to overcome cynicism, apathy, disengagement, and despair.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.      

14.    Progressives reject, oppose, and seek to overcome selfish individualism, and progressives reject, oppose, and seek to overcome the commercial cooptation of human culture and the commoditization of human social relations Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
 
15.    Progressives reject, oppose, and seek to overcome reification and compartmentalization in thought and action, and progressives likewise reject, oppose, and seek to overcome desensitization, callous indifference and lack of concern for others, as well as processes of ‘othering', and especially ‘abjectification’, in general.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

16.    Progressives strongly oppose militarism and imperialism– economic, political, and cultural.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
  
17.    Progressives strongly oppose fascism, neo-fascism, proto-fascism, and post-fascism, in all varieties, as well as all other forms of genuine totalitarianism.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.

18.      Progressives commit themselves toward working actively to advance the causes of human emancipation, collective equality, social justice, ecological sustainability, and a peaceful world.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
  
19.    Progressives believe that real social progress ultimately requires real social transformation–and not mere social reformation.  Progressives fight against forces and interests which contend or act otherwise.
 
20.    Progressives believe in the value, and indeed necessity, of forceful, creative, determined, persistent, and even at times relentless engagement in questioning, challenging, critiquing, resisting, rebelling, and revolting versus established power and authority in order to advance progressive ends and serve progressive interests. 

THESE ARE MY VALUES.  I SHARE THEM WITH YOU.  SHARE THEM WITH ME.  SHARE THEM WITH OTHERS.  LIVE THEM IN THE WORLD.  -- Bob Nowlan aka Insurgent Sean Murphy

***