Category: culture

Notre Dame Cathedral

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From the viewpoint of sheer durability, art works clearly are superior to all other things; since they stay longer in the world than anything else, they are the worldliest of all things. Moreover, they are the only things without any function in the life process of society; strictly speaking, they are fabricated not for men, but for the world which is meant to outlast the life-span of mortals, the coming and going of the generations. – Hannah Arendt

NotreDame02

I got no idols

I will never give up avocados. No virtue signaling here.

It has more to do with narcissistic self-hugging than practical politics.

When the professional outragetariat is put out of business.

Not if it’s pure and snortable.

2018: one of the worst years for film in decades.

What would Bentham do? I mean the full Bentham.

National Populism must be defeated wherever it pops up. Only barbarians ignore the rule of law.

In a true democracy, bad decisions are always reversible.

Offrande charnelle

Those who are put off by so-called “difficult” reading material are likely put off by other challenges in life. They settle for the facile comforts of easily digested pablum and shun the sublime pleasure of mastering aesthetic complexity.

It’s interesting that people blame books for their own intellectual deficiencies.

An affirmative embrace of inferiority is present in the judgment that a difficult book must be “pretentious.”

Savonarola, Cola di Rienzo, Mussolini, and now Salvini. Once again, in a moment of profound weakness, Italy has chosen fascism.

The bone spurs which kept Donald Trump out of the Vietnam War have prevented him from attending a ceremony in the rain at the Belleau cemetery.

Midterm

The gutter press still satiates the libidinous needs of its audience.

Peter Grant was the Sir Alex Ferguson of rock music managers.

Work (particularly manual labour) has always been over-rated by Christian moralists and Marxists beholden to the debunked “labour theory of value.”

Historically, workers in “developed nations” benefited from imperialism in relation to workers in places like Sri Lanka or India. Now the situation has been reversed, with the latter rendering the former as surplus labour under conditions of globalisation and what Zygi Bauman called “liquid modernity.”

Pets are better than most people, so the upscale pampering is understandable (see Assange’s cat).

Biopics typically fail. I don’t know why they are made with such frequency. Lack of new ideas?

US culture is a festival of cultural appropriation. It is cultural appropriation, or hybridisation, all the way down. But then so are all cultures, at least the ones that progress as opposed to becoming museum pieces.

Getting married today

It is ironic that an American now serves as the gravedigger of anti-monarchism.

There aren’t enough republicans to fill Wembley Stadium.

As the monarchy looks to the future, the brexitious Labour and Tory parties look to their inglorious pasts.

The cosmopolitan young royals are an easy sell when contrasted with the likes of nativist elected politicians like May and Corbyn.

Cromwell’s reign of terror made divine right look attractive.

The problem with Oxford is that it is not (and will never be) Cambridge.

Jordan Peterson is the Gwyneth Paltrow of the alt right.

Much of the blues tradition, on which rock and roll is based, is decidedly misogynistic and would run afoul of the #MeToo movement.

There are few facts in sports journalism, but there is a lot of conjecture and imaginative speculation.

Incitement to disgust

Want rules over need in economies based on consumption, not thrift. Asceticism is anachronistic.

Envy of the rich and hatred of the poor are co-dependent on each other. Neither emotion should be affirmed.

Simple language is for simple minds.

Americans tend to exaggerate; everything is the biggest, the most beautiful, the greatest. If you disagree with them, they call you little and sad.

Rights are taken, not given. They don’t fall down from heaven.

The Assad dictatorship has a track record of brutality. Ignore that at your own peril.

Conspiracy thinking is rife today. Those who doubt even their own existence are complicit with Assad and Putin.

Conspiracy thinking is insincerity par excellence. Taken to its logical end, conspiracy thinkers must consider that their own thoughts might be part of a conspiracy. And then the doors of the mental ward close behind them.

Alas, we are beset by fools and mountebanks.

Moral panic

 

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The removal of the Waterhouse painting in Manchester is only another black eye for the city.

I recall a time when religious fundamentalists sought to ban photographs by Robert Mapplethorpe because they were “pornographic.”

Only a philistine would demand that art be moral.

Curators need the “creator” to sell to a public which is addicted to celebrity. They’ve sold the artist, not the art, for a long time. Hence, they remain behind the times intellectually for financial reasons.

The public, and the journalists who write for it, were never were educated in semiotics, structuralism, modernist aesthetics, etc., to begin with.

I remember when a man of the cloth called for the “extermination” of the Sex Pistols.

Arendt never apologised for being Heidegger’s lover.

Althusser murdered his wife, but no one demanded the New Left Review close its shop.

Épater la bourgeoisie.

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