Astronomical Odds
An Unthinkable Motive

The Prose, It Burns

Further to this, readers may be interested in Philosophy and Literature’s gone but not forgotten Annual Bad Writing Contest. The rules are simple enough:

The Bad Writing Contest attempts to locate the ugliest, most stylistically awful passage found in a scholarly book or article published in the last few years. Ordinary journalism, fiction, etc. are not eligible, nor are parodies: entries must be non-ironic, from actual serious academic journals or books.

The winning entries are, alas, not quite so clear. This, from 1997, is Professor Rob Wilson, writing in The Administration of Aesthetics: Censorship, Political Criticism, and the Public Sphere, a collection of essays published by the University of Minnesota Press and edited by Richard Burt:

If such a sublime cyborg would insinuate the future as post-Fordist subject, his palpably masochistic locations as ecstatic agent of the sublime superstate need to be decoded as the ‘now-all-but-unreadable DNA’ of a fast deindustrializing Detroit, just as his Robocop-like strategy of carceral negotiation and street control remains the tirelessly American one of inflicting regeneration through violence upon the racially heteroglossic wilds and others of the inner city.

The publisher’s blurb informs us that the purpose of the book quoted above is to “seek a deeper understanding of what ‘censorship’, ‘criticism’ and the ‘public sphere’ really mean.”

There’s more, of course.  (h/t, Stephen Hicks.)