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2018 Postmodern Village Conference
Conference Report

Grimsley MandrakeThe Redolent Teapot (and Other Terrors), a Primer on the Lingering Scent of Fairy Tales and Nursery Rhymes in Popular Culture
by Grimsley Mandrake

Mandrake moaned about "kids don't know what anything smells like these days" and how "in my day, when you talked about Carter's Little Liver Pills or Bromaseltzer, people knew what you meant." We were also encouraged to get off his lawn.

Blankenship MonongaughDiffuser-in-Chief: Trump as Aromatherapy, a Consideration of the Textuality of Coal Country
by Blankenship Monongaugh

No one ever talks about how a Trump rally smells and for good reason. After a few samples of body odor, the requisite oil diffuser started and most of the attendees simply took a lavender-scented nap. A doTerra sales pitch followed, but was interrupted when a rival Young Living consultant in the audience started a brawl with a LulaRoe-clad Amway representative.

Ishmael Bayleen(S)Mellville: Ambergris, Lamp Oil, and the Whale Trade, a Decanting
by Ishmael Bayleen

Call us what you will, but the olfactory experience of this presentation became our new obsession. The parts of Moby Dick usually skipped over proved a deep pool of resources for Bayleen, whose paper brought both light and heat. We only barely managed to get out before he had us all sunk.

William W. LothingAdventures in Tranqueville: Coping, Cognition, and Keeling Over, a Gonzo Critique of Hunter S. Thompson from a 12-Step Perspective
by William W. Lothing

We’re not sure of the legality of Lothing’s presentation, but the notion that reality is a series of heavy trips from which we must recover, as revealed through Hunter S. Thompson’s journalism, became considerably more convincing when the bats showed up

'Herc' Poore RoeBell, Biv, and Candle: “Urban Contemporary” as Metaphysical Murder Mystery
by “Herc” Poore Roe

Roe fingers no single suspect, but points out all the ways that Motownphilly’s back again. “Finesse” by Bruno Mars (featuring Cardi B.) proves that New Jack’s having another life. Or was it ever really killed?

Quan Tumm Beetz No Mas(s): Particle Physics, Catholicism, and Sugar Ray, an Exploration in Strangely Entangled LatinXXX Trip-Hop
by Quan Tumm Beetz

Beetz may not have solved all questions in theoretical physics with her analysis, but she does use postmodern musical pastiche to suggest how many angels can trip on the head of a spin. Weightlessly delivered but with a heavy rhythm, Beetz boxed both our ears and our minds into freaked-out submission.

Snap S. UppSlamSung Galaxy: Smartphone Play-Places as Performance Poetry Outer-Spaces, a Cosmology
by Snap S. Upp

Upp’s presentation, for anyone looking in, would have seemed like just a bunch of people playing with their phones, but the rhymes were real and the slam both streetwise and far out.

Smiley G. HensonBuntSin Honeydew: Cake-Baking as Science and Scripture, a Muppetic Demonology
by Smiley G. Henson

Beloved childhood friends or hellish, oven-bound eschatology? Henson’s idea puts the diabolical back in the dialogical, collapsing opposites into delicious confections. The handouts? Devil’s food cake.

Presentations, Part 2