About the Blog
The name xenogothic was initially a joke — an expression of a long-held feeling that I’m not a very good goth. In wanting to finally embrace this imposter syndrome and explore it, I adopted this blogonym in late 2017 and have since tried to describe a worldview through it.
As I see it, the Gothic has long been representative of various narrative and aesthetic limits. Initially used to invoke the persistence of our own restless and barbarous pasts long into our futures, the Gothic has often brought to mind the signs and signifiers at the edge of what we know and understand about the world around us — the weird, the eerie, the grotesque…
More recently, however, it has become synonymous with a largely outdated and aesthetically conservative subculture. Goths and the Gothic eat and humiliate each other, unable to keep up with the present, much like everything else, losing their own sense of the future.
Broadly speaking, xenogothic is an attempt to break with the Gothic’s narcissistic self-obsession and instead build new futures for itself to exist in. It is an attempt to reweird the Gothic; an attempt to encourage the emergence of a new Gothic that exists outside of itself — one that is capable of having an impact on the world beyond its present status as rigid aesthetic cliché.
My name is Matt Colquhoun and I’m a writer and photographer from Kingston-upon-Hull.
In 2013, I completed an undergraduate degree in Photographic Art at the University of Wales, Newport. After putting it to good use for a few years, in 2016 I decided to do a Masters degree in Contemporary Art Theory at Goldsmiths, University of London, scratching an itch to finally get to grips with Deleuze and to be taught by two of my heroes: Mark Fisher and Kodwo Eshun.
This blog began as an excuse to keep writing after what turned out to be a traumatic postgraduate experience, following the death of Mark Fisher in January 2017. I write about philosophy, politics and culture — often all at once — resisting the compartmentalising nature of an academicised “Cultural Studies” and instead attempting to create cultures anew out of the everyday.
In 2020, I published my first book, Egress: On Mourning, Melancholy and Mark Fisher, and edited the collection Postcapitalist Desire: The Final Lectures of Mark Fisher. I’m currently working on a number of other projects related to accelerationism, photography and subjectivity, psychoanalysis and adoption, and the psychedelic legacy of the American West.
Currently based in Huddersfield, I spend my non-writing days freelancing in the publishing industry for the likes of Urbanomic and Repeater Books. I’m readily available for all your writing, proofreading, and copyediting needs — just drop me an email.
Xenogothic holds onto a utopian view of the blogosphere where blogging is done for its own sake. As a public notebook, it is a space to enter into dialogue with others and overcome the more alienating aspects of a solitary writer’s existence. To monetise access to this kind of work is to fundamentally undermine its principles and its fugitivity from restrictive forms of “professionalisation”. But man’s got to eat…
If you want to support these principles and the work produced on this blog, there are numerous things that you can do to help. First of all, if you have the power and the funds, consider hiring me. I have been working freelance as a writer, editor, and proofreader for the last few years, and this became my primary source of income following the coronavirus outbreak.
Alternatively, you can buy my merch on Bandcamp and Teespring. You can buy copies of my books. You can buy me a coffee via my Ko-Fi profile. You can also sign up to the the XG Patreon for various benefits and the XG reading group.
I’m hugely appreciative of all the support I’ve already received from people over the last few years and hopefully this makes sense, within the current climate, as a transparent way to support the work done here in order to keep up the consistency of my content in a world that is increasingly precarious and unforgiving for those of us wanting to produce written content available to all.
Whether you’ve got questions about the blog, any of the topics above, or just want to say hello, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’re shy, there’s always Curious Cat, although I check it very infrequently. You can also contact me through Twitter or Instagram. This blog’s presence on Facebook is entirely automated and I try and stay far away from that hellscape as much as possible; it’s the worst way to try and get in touch.