Join us when Christopher Schaberg returns to Octavia Books to present and sign AIRPORTNESS, his new humorous and completely original work of cultural history exploring the surprising connections between the common experience of air travel and how we think about nature.
The term “airportness” has been used to describe the architectural feel of modern terminals and concourses. In his third book about airports, Christopher Schaberg argues that airportness is not just a way of thinking about design, but also the feelings and sensations related to everyday patterns of flight. It is seeing planes in the sky, recognizing vague roars from above, and interpreting the routines of air travel—from sliding doors, to jet bridge, to lavatory.
Airportness: The Nature of Flight departs from where The End of Airports left off, speculating about the future of flight and contemplating aircraft as they appear in a variety of contexts. Airportness explores how planes have become surprisingly natural objects: experienced as unquestionable set pieces, props, and passages…airportness is the rumbling background noise of the jet age.
Christopher Schaberg is Associate Professor of English at Loyola University. 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.
“With deep insight and a singular brilliance, Christopher Schaberg takes the reader on a journey from curb to curb, chastising us for our indifference to cloudscapes, rekindling our wonder for liftoff, asking us to reckon with airport as metaphor for late-stage capitalism, for American identity, for the last vestiges of faith, even, ironically, for what we call home. Part razor-sharp critique, part advanced elegy for a doomed mode of transportation, Airportness is finally a declaration of love for a threatened land(sky)scape, an imperative to remain awake and alive.” – Pam Houston, Professor of English, UC Davis, USA, and author of Contents May Have Shifted