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Friday, October 20, 2017

R.I.P.

Remarkable the extent to which one was blind to the imposing array of narratological strategies deployed in this when one first read it, what, thirty years ago?



Cover art (c) Victor Juhasz, 2017. 

Friday, September 22, 2017

Le Carré

The Spy Who Came in From the Cold wonderfully suspenseful, clever.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is essentially 70 to 90 percent non-fiction, insofar as I can tell, meaning slightly dull in places, but the masses of information about the objective reality of espionage convey a breathtaking authenticity. Highly educational.

Obsolete "omniscent" narrator, or central consciousness, but that's okay because there are no "musts" in art, or so one is told. The narrator is serious if not solemn, protag Leamas (not the most appealing name, actually kind of annoying to read over and over) grouchy, cynical, highly skilled in the tradecraft of spying; author lives in the past stylistically.

Le Carré a nom de plume for John Cornwell, carré meaning (1) square (2) straighforward, frank.


Thursday, July 6, 2017

Dolls

When Robert Duncan writes in Faust Foutu (1960, 1985):

"Protect us from those who play with dolls,"

he puts men in the position of being those who play with those who play with dolls.

And when he writes:

"Modesty means nothing to the sea," and:

"I'll fill myself with trouble until I resemble the universe," and:

"The moon upon the water is country enough for me," and:

"For all the hell of history, we have been feeding ourselves into mankind. For Nothing! Nothing!," and:

"I have no extravagant pride in sin. I know it's place," and:

"Everything is truth," (Cf. G.W.F. Hegel: "The truth is the whole," and Sartre's call for a "totalizing" analytic),

one wonders . . . .


Murphy

Despicably pedantic (though not as bad as Echo's Bones) but not without an air of eccentric, too often lame merriment. I can see now why this was suggested reading for the summer before going off to the nest of tweedy (as in "twee") mediocrities who attempted to teach one the meaning of literature. Classic case of a writer with little to say trying too hard. Clear why it wasn't published in the U$ till after Godot, though it first appeared in London, surprisingly, before, in 1938.



Thursday, June 22, 2017

Echo's Bones (Narrative)

Can language be more stilted, pretentious, pompous?

A perfect text to hate-read. And the contrast it presents to the famed trilogy, particularly to The Unnamable, is remarkable, leading to an unavoidable question, The same dude wrote both of these?

Friday, June 16, 2017

Those Brits

class = clahss
past = pahst
figure = figga
schedule = shed-dule
world = wuld
job = jub
top = tawp
are = ah
together = togethah
first = fust
been = bean

Not hard to figure.

LIAR IN CHIEF

Lying on serious matters is a classic sign of moral depravity.

Five minutes ago NPR broadcast that the Washington Post has recently reported President Pinocchio is on the record as having told more than six hundred lies, in public, since his inauguration.