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CURRENT READING: DIANA AT HER BATH + THE WOMEN OF ROME: PIERRE KLOSSOWSKI: Marsilo

Klossowski turns the sketch that is the myth into a rich and lyrical exegesis that entangles the male gaze vs the female gaze.Klossowski turns the sketch that is the myth into a rich and lyrical exegesis that entangles the male gaze vs the female gaze.

Pierre Klossowski, the lapsed Catholic intellectual with a Polish aristocratic title (his brother being the notorious Balthus), a childhood education in Germany, and a legacy of philosophical treatises on Nietzche and Sade, has never been the most lucid of writers. In fact he never even tried that particular trick. Klossowski studied Latin so extensively, it corrupted his French, leading him to a lifetime love of archaic words and long, multi-part sentences with some pretty extended sub-clauses. Yet his influence was such that not only did intellectual giants such as Foucault declare themselves fans, Klossowski's system of thought and of writing was an explicit influence on works like Foucault's own "History Of Sexuality".

Current Reading:10:04: By Ben Lerner : Faber and Faber, 2014

In his second novel, 10:04, Lerner has created a work of autobiographical metafiction that  finds new ways to refer to itself.In his second novel, 10:04, Lerner has created a work of autobiographical metafiction that finds new ways to refer to itself.

The new novel, "10:04" by poet-turned-novelist, Ben Lerner is a dry, scathingly elegant elegy to New York City. Here's an excerpt

Current Reading: YVES SAINT LAURENT : UNE PASSION MAROCAINE : Pierre Bergé

Yves Saint Laurent had always claimed that Morocco influenced his creations.Yves Saint Laurent had always claimed that Morocco influenced his creations.

À l’occasion de l’exposition « Yves Saint Laurent et le Maroc », présentée pour la première fois au jardin Majorelle à Marrakech, Pierre Bergé se souvient. Il tire les fils du passé et accompagne ses propos de photographies, dont beaucoup sont inédites, de dessins et d’aquarelles de Lawrence Mynott.

Current Reading: Jean François Lyotard : Libidinal Economy : Athlone Contemporary European Thinkers

Libidinal Economy is  written in a combination of styles, reading more like an avant-garde novel than a philosophical text.Libidinal Economy is written in a combination of styles, reading more like an avant-garde novel than a philosophical text.

The irony of this book is its author would probably hate if it were to seen as his signature work. Lyotard once indicted Libidinal Economy as an 'evil book, the book of evilness that everyone writing and thinking is tempted to do'. This evil book comes back to mind whenever I'm forced to confront…let's call them cultural values in exchange. Let me give an example. I made an acquaintance in Paris, with a very erudite man who runs one of those esteemed cultural institutions that fashion people accidentally haunt for purposes of a defilé without realizing the nature of the real business that goes on in this landmark cultural space. The conversations between us were never actually very intellectual but were vaguely sexual, as we shared a lover. As in he was the ex, I am the current. Or so we all assume, in an arrangement that is apparently a very French way of conducting one's emotional business. He wasn't threatened by me as he is apparently quite wealthy and I wasn't threatened by him since I was the much better…dancer. One day we were all having dinner at a restaurant in the high bourgeoise section of the Marais, (which I prefer to call by its English name, "The Swamp". ) As usual the waiter handed him the check, though dinner was on me and I joked, "We can never escape the libidinal economy can we?" . He laughed and then I thought, who would have thought that one of the most unreadable of Jean François Lyotard's early works could have proved so useful .

Current Reading: Desert Islands And Other Texts: Gilles Deleuze

It was Foucault who first said: "This century will be Deleuzien."It was Foucault who first said: "This century will be Deleuzien."

Deleuze shortly before his death - he committed suicide by throwing himself from his flat in Paris - recorded one of the Arte Channel's most fascinating philosophical programmes, Abecedaire ("Alphabet"), in which he introduced a subject starting with a letter of the alphabet. "A" was for "animal", "G" for "gauche" (left-wing), and B was for "boisson" (drink). The "S" for "suicide" has yet to be broadcast.

Current Reading: Petite Bréviaire du Snobisme: Antonius Moonen

Une protestation, un manifeste anti-politiquement correct, anti-uniformisation, anti-consommation, anti-bourgeois, anti-bobos!Une protestation, un manifeste anti-politiquement correct, anti-uniformisation, anti-consommation, anti-bourgeois, anti-bobos!

Current Reading: The One By Whom Scandal Comes: Rene Girard

“Why is there so much violence in our midst?” René Girard asks.“Why is there so much violence in our midst?” René Girard asks.

Published on New Year's Day this year, Rene Girard's "The One By Whom Scandal Comes" is the philosopher's latest extension of his great theory of mimetic desire. In a world where post-modern post-structuralism has been so institutionalized so as to form its own orthodoxy (oh the irony), Girard's philosophical certitude, attendant to a Christian theology, moral in its considerations and humanistic in its concerns, hovers at the edge of intellectual unfashionability.

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