Ida Lødemel Tvedt's collection of essays is colourful and perceptive. She writes about origin myths and root metaphors, loneliness and madness, identity politics and the American myth, objectification and the play of lust, staged femininity, guilt, shame and the cultural history of Adam and Eve, Steve Bannon and the theatre of evil, stand-up comedians, weepy end-time narcissists, the Whore of Babylon and angry mothers.
Lødemel Tvedt's reflections move in a world - between Europe and the USA, between urban settings and vast landscapes - that sometimes seems cold and disillusioned, sometimes euphoric and well-meaning.
She engages with works by Susan Sontag, Anne Carson and Gertrude Stein, examines texts by Ta-Nehisi Coates, Maggie Nelson, Hilton Ale and Claire-Louise Bennett, and incorporates voices by Simone Weil, Martha Nussbaum, Hannah Arendt, Marquis de Sade, Johann Georg Hamman and Dolly Parton.
The title may suggest the pursuit of depth, the probing of social orders and dynamics, but perhaps it merely refers to the author's "maritime fantasies".