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Iain Ellis
Image: Iain Ellis

Born in Manchester and raised east of London, Iain Ellis spent his formative years playing, performing, and consuming a heavy diet of punk rock music and football.  In 1986, the young man went west to find his dreams in Bowling Green, Ohio.  Instead, he picked up a PhD in American Culture Studies, writing his dissertation on 1980s American Punk Culture.  In 2000, he traveled further west, settling in Lawrence, Kansas, where he currently teaches English at the University of Kansas and performs in his band The Leotards. You may also enjoy his books, Rebels Wit Attitude: Subversive Rock Humorists and Brit Wits: A History of British Rock Humor.


Features

Sunday, January 11 2009

Rebels Wit Attitude: Nirvana

In this excerpt from PopMatters' new book Rebels Wit Attitude, Iain Ellis discusses how Nirvana were a rocking perfect storm of punk’s attitude, metal’s riffs, and pop hooks.


Sunday, December 14 2008

Rebels Wit Attitude: Beastie Boys

In this excerpt of PopMatters' new book Rebels Wit Attitude, Ellis discusses how Beastie Boys were not afraid to play the enemy within, often mocking the macho strutting of harder rappers.


Sunday, December 7 2008

Rebels Wit Attitude: Talking Heads

In this excerpt from PopMatters' new book Rebels Wit Attitude, Ellis looks at the Talking Heads' art school intellectualism, pop melodies, funk rhythms, and the abstract humor that made them outsiders.


Columns

Thursday, October 23 2014

The Commandments of Lenny Bruce

Lenny Bruce made the stage his pulpit, the audience his parishioners, and stand-up the sermons for his alternative secular faith.


Wednesday, September 17 2014

Mr. Mencken Went to Dayton and the Culture Wars Began

Long before Christopher Hitchens and Bill Maher, H.L. Mencken was America's most notorious satirist of religion. And thus began the battle for the soul of America.


Thursday, June 19 2014

The Fascination with Fundamentalism in Hardcore Punk

Some bands echoed the Dead Kennedys' anti-Moral Majority messages; others embodied right-wing religion.


Friday, April 25 2014

A User's Guide to Parody Religions: Churches of the SubGenius & the Flying Spaghetti Monster

Our prophet explains that we may know what gravity is, but we don't know the cause of it, thus, “What if it is He, pushing us down with His Noodly Appendages, that causes this force?”


Thursday, February 20 2014

A User's Guide to Parody Religions: Dudeism, Invisible Pink Unicorns, and Americhrist Ltd.

Plotting exposure, parody seeks to unveil rather than to mask, to offer truths where it finds lies, deceit, or hypocrisy. So why has religion proven particularly prone to this means of comedic put-down?


Wild Wanda Jackson [16.Feb.06]
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