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January 26, 2011

What Was the Hipster

To the Editor:

There is always some cruelty in social critique, and perhaps there should be, but I find this anti-hipster hysteria dehumanizing. I wonder if Mark Greif's essay on countercultural consumerism tells us anything about his own class interests, or perhaps about the status anxieties of the contemporary intellectual class. And when all this derision that suffocates us with its self-entitled superiority is lifted, what objective social, economic, psychological categories of hipsterism are we left with? Who are these people that we seem to hate so deeply? And what would we want them to do if they weren't acting like hipsters?



The Hipster in the Mirror
Published: November 12, 2010
Why do people get so agitated when discussing hipsterism? Pierre Bourdieu's "Distinction" provides some clues.

Mark Greif, was a founder of n+1 and an assistant professor at the New School, is the editor, with Kathleen Ross and Dayna Tortorici, of "What Was the Hipster? A Sociological Investigation," published last month.

January 24, 2011

Self-direction, in independent thought, in peer collaboration, in responsibility.

One of the most important influences early on was being educated in a Montessori setting. The Montessori ethos was very formative for me because it built into me a belief in self-direction, in independent thought, in peer collaboration, in responsibility.

Those even became tenets for me in terms of my management style -- a kind of laissez-faire approach to allowing people to self-direct and peer-collaborate to figure things out and get things done here. That attracts a certain kind of person. There are other people who can't thrive in that -- they need things spelled out, they need their five tasks

Jeremy Allaire, chairman and chief executive of Brightcove, an online video platform for Web sites.

January 2, 2011

"Capital is blind," said David W. Levinson, a founder of L & L Holding Company, a real estate firm that controls 11 Manhattan buildings. "It will go wherever it can for a return. That's it in a nutshell."

It is an infuriating pattern for the New York City's real estate aristocracy, like the Durst family,
which has been measured in its borrowing and has never defaulted on a loan. Yet,
Douglas Durst said, "That has not given us any advantage as we go through each
financial cycle in which the bankers who made bad loans are let go, but the defaulting
borrowers are waiting for the new team of bankers to start the process over again."

Real Estate Developers Prosper Despite Defaults
Published: January 1, 2011
Unlike ordinary homeowners, developers who suffer costly losses tend to be forgiven by lenders and investors.

January 1, 2011

Rhymes with Eleven

Prediction: there will be a short term burst in demand of things that Rhyme with Eleven.