Adam Theron-Lee Rensch
is a writer and musician based in Chicago. Currently, he is an English PhD student at the University of Illinois at Chicago and is finishing his first novel, A Beginner's Guide to Learning How to Die.
MAR 2018 | Field Notes
Few narratives remain as endearing to the American mythos as the frontier. The images it has given us—from the small-town saloon of drunken gunslingers to the rugged cowboy wandering a lonely, expansive landscape—symbolize the organizing principles of American capitalism: individualism and self-sufficiency, property rights, a domination of nature, and a masculine celebration of violence as a vehicle for creation (“disruption,” as it is now called in startup speak). In our increasingly borderless world of global capital, the frontier’s legacy continues to validate a conquest of land and people that falsely imagines itself without limits.
JUL-AUG 2017 | Field Notes
Virtually every critical review of the new adaptation of The Handmaid’s Tale has drawn parallels between the series’ fictional totalitarian theocracy, Gilead, and the policies and ideological proclivities of Donald Trump’s administration.
JUL-AUG 2016 | Field Notes
On a humid day in the summer of 2010, amidst the lingering fallout from the financial crisis, I entered New York’s Penn Station and boarded a train headed for northwest Ohio.
DEC 16-JAN 17 | Field Notes
By occupying the strange position of both problem and solution, democracy in the twenty-first century has become something surprisingly reminiscent of the totalizing, ideologically laden politics to which it is often deemed antithetical.
MAY 2017 | Field Notes
This was not the story I intended to write. That was a fictional story, though like many fictional stories it was inspired by a true event.
OCT 2017 | Field Notes
Identity is a complicated thing. It is not, to paraphrase Wittgenstein, like simply hanging a label onto a person, though the contemporary discussion addressing identity—and identity politics, specifically—often imagines this to be the case.
SEPT 2016 | Field Notes
In the early 2000s, I spent many nights at the now defunct Emma St Bar & Grill, a truck stop diner located just off I-75 in Findlay, Ohio. Open twenty-four hours, it offered cheap, greasy food and bottomless cups of coffee.