Placing Politics Within the Pop Culture Landscape

Cool thing: Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth
photo: Michael Lavine

Sonic Youth matriarch Kim Gordon has a busy spring and summer ahead of her. Her band's follow-up to 2004's Sonic Nurse is due out in June and she will spend the subsequent months out on the road with the group, including already confirmed stops at the Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza festivals. But before Gordon packs her bags, she'll sit down for an intimate chat with Greil Marcus, one of the heavies of rock criticism and author of one of the profession's sacred texts, Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the 20th Century. Their talk, the final event in the CUNY Graduate Center's "Conversations on Politics and Aesthetics" series, will find the two legends musing the definition of the word politics and searching for its identity and place in the pop culture landscape. Julia Sneeringer, an associate professor of history at Queens College and this year's resident Mellon fellow, will moderate the discussion. Describing the allure of seeing great rock 'n' roll icons live, Gordon once wrote in Artforum, "People pay to see others believe in themselves." Lucky for you, this time it won't cost a dime.

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