Weeks before the Experience Music Project's Pop Music Studies Conference, Seattle began to gird itself against the coming influx of buzzkills. An alt-weekly provocateur proclaimed: "When it comes to rock, I like my criticism the way I like my music: hotheaded and visceral, without all the sociology, psychology, philosophy, and the other -ogy's and -ophy's" (she could have added "-city's" and "-ship's," and taken care of pesky ubiquities like "authenticity" and "authorship" too). Yes, there were talks about the shape of poetry and the plundering of genres, about representation and signification and diaspora. But though it had its clunkers, the conference proved a real bust for those Casaubons who bought tickets to Seattle hoping to hear the kind of criticism they like—dated, labyrinthine, and wishbone dry.... More >>>