Ocean (Object Lessons)
Object Lessons is a series of short, beautifully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things.The ocean comprises the largest object on our planet. Retelling human history from an oceanic rather than terrestrial point of view unsettles our relationship with the natural environment. Our engagement with the world's oceans can be destructive, as with today’s deluge of plastic trash and acidification, but the mismatch between small bodies and vast seas also emphasizes the frailty and resilience of human experience.From ancient stories of shipwrecked sailors to the containerized future of 21st-century commerce, Ocean splashes the histories we thought we knew into salty and unfamiliar places.Object Lessons is published in partnership with an essay series in The Atlantic. Review "Steve Mentz’s Ocean is both a lyrical and scholarly ode to the sea, encrusting and fluid." - The Millions“Oceans are big things, so Steve Mentz has made a concise book of them. From sailors as cyborgs to Queequeg as a mermaid, from Conrad's mirrored sea to Emily Dickinson's marine visions, Mentz swims like Coleridge's library cormorant, collecting glittering things. The result is a wild and wonderful work; part essay, part reverie, wholly full of watery brilliance.” ―Philip Hoare, author of RISINGTIDEFALLINGSTAR (2018)“Ocean: a tiny word, but an expansive ecology made fathomable by Mentz's exploration of the human attraction to and fear of the world's oceans as illuminated through poetry, history, and literature. A wondrous read.” ―Lynne Cox, author of Swimming to Antartica: Tales of a Long-distance Swimmer (2004), Grayson (2006), and Swimming in the Sink: A Memoir (2016)“Mentz takes us on an invigorating 'adventure in thinking,' across vast temporalities and aquatic expanses, rich with strange confluences, and haunted by the terrors of 'wet globalization.' Against the impossibility of understanding the ocean, he casts an inventive blue humanities that lures us with its histories, poetry, theories, queer couplings, exultations, and immersive practices.” ―Stacy Alaimo, author of Exposed: Environmental Politics and Pleasures in Posthuman Times (2016) About the Author Steve Mentz is Professor of English at St John's University, USA. He is the author of three books, including Shipwreck Modernity: Ecologies of Globalization, 1550 – 1719 (2015), and the editor of four books. His maritime research has been supported by the Folger Shakespeare Library, the John Carter Brown Library, Mystic Seaport, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the National Maritime Museum in London. Christopher Schaberg is Dorothy Harrell Brown Distinguished Professor of English at Loyola University New Orleans, USA. He is the author of The Textual Life of Airports: Reading the Culture of Flight (2013) and The End of Airports (2015) and co-editor of Deconstructing Brad Pitt (2014). He is series co-editor (with Ian Bogost) of Bloomsbury's Object Lessons. Ian Bogost is Ivan Allen College Distinguished Chair in Media Studies and Professor of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology, and Founding Partner at Persuasive Games LLC. Bogost is author or co-author of seven books: Unit Operations (2006), Persuasive Games (2007), Racing the Beam ( 2009), Newsgames (2010), How To Do Things with Videogames (2011), Alien Phenomenology (University of Minnesota Press, 2012), and 10 PRINT CHR (205.5+RND(1)); : Goto 10 (2012). Bogost also creates videogames that cover topics as varied as airport security, disaffected workers, the petroleum industry, suburban errands, and tort reform. His games have been played by millions of people and exhibited internationally. His game A Slow Year, a collection of game poems for Atari, won the Vanguard and Virtuoso awards at the 2010 Indiecade Festival.