I am an historian of thought, and media and design theorist, specializing in Georges Bataille, late modernism, and contemporary culture. In my work, the histories of religion, philosophy, literature and the arts, including all manner of visual and material culture and design, serve as subsets of the history of thought.

Within this broad area, I work as an educator, writer, editor, and translator. My books include The Ends of Art and Design, Georges Bataille, Gilgamesh, and many edited and translated volumes, often reflecting or extending Bataille’s thought.

I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, where I teach at the California College of the Arts. Previous teaching appointments have included Stanford University, Boston University, and SUNY Stony Brook. I have given lectures at colleges, universities, conferences, and colloquia nationally and internationally.

Current projects include ongoing research on the fate of the sacred, media history and theory, general economy and sustainability, and design and everyday life.