My name is Justin Read, and I’m Associate Professor of Spanish and Portuguese in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at the University at Buffalo (SUNY). I’m currently working on several book projects on poetics, urban design, and political power in Latin America. The first of these, tentatively entitled Buenos Aires and the Birth of the Nonsubject, is close to having a completed draft. Other book manuscripts on Brazil and Mexico are also coming along. In the meantime, I’ve been developing a side-project on hell and Brazilian culture (Machado de Assis, Vilém Flusser, Cinema Novo, Hilda Hilst, and Zé do Caixão, with a [blood] splattering of the Mexican Salvador Elizondo). You might say I’m developing hell in the way one might develop real estate.
After organizing the “Fluid Culture” arts, media, and lecture series for the UB Humanities Institute in 2011-12, I am now editing an essay collection on water, fluidity and culture with my fellow conspirator, Colleen Culleton.
With my comrade Craig Epplin I am “Desk Chief” of the Urbanities blog, part of the Feedback section of the Open Humanities Press (http://openhumanitiespress.org/feedback/). Set to launch very soon!
Lastly, I’m proud to serve on the board of directors of Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center (http://www.hallwalls.org) in Buffalo, NY. Founded by Cindy Sherman, Robert Longo, Charlie Clough and others, Hallwalls fosters artists and performers locally, and brings artists, filmmakers, musicians (and anyone else who has anything important to say) to Buffalo. Hallwalls helps keep this city simmering with fresh ideas, and it deserves your support.
Oh, and before I forget… If you knock Buffalo, I’ll knock you back!