The Pimpers and the Pimped, VI
This is a continuation of the topic The Pimpers and the Pimped, V.
This topic was continued by The Pimpers and the Pimped, VII.
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last i checked, though it was some years back, there existed no major biography of cendrars, even in french
After 64 Hexagrams or 108 movements in Tai Chi Chuan, you also complete a circle. These mystical hexagrams are also based on binary progressions, as Leibnitz realized when his Jesuit friends sent him a copy of the Book of Changes. I wonder if there is a relation to the Egyptian Ouroborus or Fibocini
A short appreciation of Buchner's Danton
Well, we are not done, but I posted a few crazed words on Moby-Dick in the review section. But don't just read mine - read (and thumb! they're good!) the ones right below by bookworm12 and Poquette, both recent reviews well worth reading. http://www.librarything.com/work/15540
Immensely satisfying review by A_Musing. If I had more thumbs I'd use them.
An awesome rejection letter to Gertrude Stein: http://bit.ly/eK4Sjm
I braved a local French bookclub today armed with my Francois Villon, selected poems, which I intended to talk about. I did not get off to a good start. Villon was a notorious criminal as well as a famous poet and I made a joke in my best French that the name Villon sounds like the word villain in English: 'how apt?' I said. There were puzzled looks all round until somebody interrupted me to inform me that I had mispronounced the name Villon. It was painfully explained that the ill sound in Villon is pronounced as Vi-yon. They had not even understood who I was talking about.
My french is not so bad that I did not know about the pronunciation of the double L sound it was just that I had got it in my head that Villon sounded like villain. Oh well. The group then went on to talk about the poet Rudebuef and I thought at first that there was some kind of joke going on as the French refer to the English rather patronisingly as Les Rosbiffs (this is because of our predilection for eating overcooked roast meat), but no there really was a poet of the middle ages named Rudebuef or Rutebuef. Isn't language wonderful.
This doesn't stop me from pimping my review of Villon, selected poems http://www.librarything.com/work/book/82525802
We missed Martin's Sakuntala review: http://www.librarything.com/work/504334
No pimp needed there, but still a whole lotta love.
Yay! I liked how personal (and breathless) your Moby-Dick review was, A_. Sort of like what I do, but better.
Finished The Big Dick here is my review http://www.librarything.com/work/15540/82778743
19: Though I am still wading through this book, you have captured many of the thoughts I have had so far on why I am ambiguous on this book. Well done!
bas cannot bring himself to love Melville's novel, though as usual he rights interestingly of it. His final sentence is maybe he could love it were he an american. Maybe? Thumbs up, I say.
You may not love, but you do seem to have a great understanding of, dear Dick (commas intentional). I remain fascinated by the American/non-American questions, and look forward to other's reviews as I try to pick some of that apart. If you have not read it, I think you would be facsinated by the "Indian Hunter" chapters of The Confidence Man.
Great review Bas. In fact, you have written the review I would have written (only yours is better) if I'd got this mammoth finished. The ambivalent reaction, recognition if its greatness, the lack of some 'connection' that others have with it, and the wondering if it's the not being American that's so problematic. Amen.
yes, great work bas. Although I'm still not so sure about the American aspect. I don't see Moby as especially American. Or at least, perhaps I'm not really sure what you mean by 'American'.
For me at least, I don't mean that Moby is "American", whatever that may mean, I just meant that maybe I don't appreciate it enough because I'm not.
I think I'll steer clear now of this American argument. All I know for certain is that I am not an American. I am also painfully aware that I am not French either.
I find it interesting, especially to listen in among non-Americans discuss it. I can see much in it that is deeply American, though I note it was mostly the British who kept it alive in the last half of the 19th century.
There are certain voices in British literature that always put me at a distance even when I can appreciate the other qualities of the work - I've noticed especially when the British upper class is part of the literary equation. This happens much less for me with say, Russian literature.
If you are tired of THE tomes, here is a relief: http://www.librarything.com/work/117408/reviews/81061988
it is, i haven't wrapped my mind completely around the story, but there is something between this "equilibrium of hunger" and the necessity of "crime" to escape this natural (?) condition.
pimping my review of Edgar Allen Poe's The Murders in the Rue Morgue. Rubbish.
Finally found comments on the Moby Dick reviews. It's not a surprise, but, wow, each review is so different. Sam, paragraph four is brilliant.
Mac - on Shipwrecks - a wonderful review.
ETA: never mind, found it on the home page: http://www.librarything.com/work/117596/reviews/83130668
my new review of Bleak House, in which Charles Dickens submits the manuscript to a modern publisher, and gets this letter back in reply...
TCM, have you read your review in combination with those below it? With yours on top, theirs now read as uninentional humor. Context!
Can't review Moby Dick, but I post my comments my thread, here (message #95): http://www.librarything.com/topic/128182#3273662
Yes it seems so. Way too low, but i cannot thumb it à second time.
Salonistas wake up! We need thumbs !
Yo ! Humbly pimping my review of the "Mountain".
Now we know what you have been doing. Great stuff mac. I only have one question. Why on earth would your wife think that you would want a book that you hadn't read in your coffin?
Mac, very beautiful and concise. I also suggest to the Spanish language readers the review by Mejix who accompanied us on our read, directly below Mac's.
Excellent stuff from our very own Mac. Thumbs thumbs and more thumbs I say.
54 For the long voyage Bas!. You can't slip into eternity without something to read !
TCM hit a nerve with his BLEAK HOUSE review. Still at No 1 with 44 thumbs. Funny, it's had a longer run than most of his serious pieces. Well done Mr Cat. Well done indeed.
Thanks for sharing I found this article very interesting and specially the way of which i want, I m also do writing but i like this kind of writing style keep it up.
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take your marketing speek and shove it up your arse, pal.
I'm getting somewhat embarrased with this BLeak House review. it was intended as a squib, a time filler, and look what happened. I guess Por is right, I touched a nerve. Would Bleak house have been published today?
Great to revisit Mann again, Mac, super review. (I thumbed the short version and read the long version.)
61 No need to be embarrassed. It is a nice tribute to Dickens and to his readers who shove aside what commercial publishers are trying to feed them.
about 59. I have quite a few of these JohnRoberts visiting my blog, especially from Russia, offering me spouses, cars, penis enlargements and loans. While it is good for the statistics, it is a bit annoying.
Do others have these problems ?
You should have seen the hits I got from Russia after I put up the whale penis pictures on the Moby Dick blog! They're still coming. They seem to be impressed.
Think I should put up an enlargement offer on my own blog for all the Russians?
64 Yes A Musing, you should. Big business is lurking behind the corner.
I was over at "That Other Group"and someone had shared these gems:
I've been peeing my pants laughing for the last 20 minutes...
Post-Limbaugh, it's clear that sluts are in. But here we're usually pimping ourselves. Without further ado, pimping my latest book sluttiness: http://www.librarything.com/work/9668897/reviews/82042469
Heartily thumbed. Are we supposed to know who the Other Critic is without being told?
Thumbed Sam, I notice the odd reference to Melville and Moby-Dick in your review.
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Wow i love it! Thanks For Sharing..
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Mac - just read your essay, a masterpiece about the Mountain.
Sam - Great stuff. Very curious who that other critic is.
My other demi-godded critic is Maria Rosa Menocal. I cannot praise her enough.
Sam, in my wishlist is I book I add last March - The Arabic role in medieval literary history : a forgotten heritage by Maria Rosa Menocal. I have a comment to remind me why it's there. It says, "See review by A_musing, March 8, 2011"
Yeah, I had the same reaction when I read that review. (The Maria Rosa M. one)
To all of you reviewers : Nice work and deserved in the hot review top !
Baswood goes yard yet again. As stingy with the varnish as old Harsch himself.
Pimping my latest iPad aps which you can read about here. Basically, they allow typing with pictures. The free one has about 100 picturewords, and the paid one has over 1000:
I have no idea what you are talking about, not being an ithing person, but congrats Solla, anyway, for a job well done.
Thanks dchaikin--it's a pleasure to revisit 7 Madmen in any fashion. Thumbed.
thanks for alert dan.
msjohns615 writes excellent reviews, and I admire his/her? erudition in the field of South American lit.
pimping my review of Moby Dick, at last.
I'll read the long review anon, but for now I have thumbed, but am in despair over the unqualified use of the word boring.
Rick, reading where you retell the story of Parikshit in your book, I have wondered whether you noticed my bit on Melville retelling it in MB: http://thetreadleoftheloom.blogspot.com/2012/01/ramadan-hindu-interpretation.htm...
A_, It is indeed interesting...where does Melville end and we begin?
For what it's worth, after reading Murr's essay on MD, I'm pondering whether Melville has embraced uncertainty, or has instead grudgingly acknowledge it as our real condition.
thank you all for the comments, and the thumbs.
Dan, very interesting question. M seems to swerve between embracing it with optimism, and begrudging it with pessimism. Perhaps.
My answer to the question would be "yes"....
I think Melville has enormous urges and desires to believe in something, and not lose himself in the uncerainties and ambiguities, but cannot; it's a tragedy of its own.
OK, here's mine on Rick's: http://www.librarything.com/work/11294103/book/84237148
Now, dammit, start thumbin.
Muse, thank you, that is an awful lot of thumbs you have there.
I now imagine you as a ten-armed goddess:
thumbed your review, well done! Get yer thumbs out everyone, more exposure for Rick's book!
His wife is a saint, yes Sam I thought that too. Great stuff, more thumbs please.
Wow again. Again a humbling review. A_, thanks...I have to tell my wife she is a saint now, of course, and that's not really what a husband wants to do...but as she just let Arjun and I buy a ball python, Adishestra (a former colleague saw me last week and immediately reached for his wallet, not his pistol, and handed me 100 he said he owed me), and now there are mice involved, a mother just gave birth to 12 or 13...She's a saint...
Of course she's a saint. Count yourself very lucky.
You know, though, I'm sort of pissed that no one has flagged that review. Martin throws in a bit of random vulgarity and gets whole threads devoted to censoring him, and I invoke the F-word not once but twice and make profanity my intro and conclusion and can't get thrown a single flag.
you're kidding. you can't write fuck in a review? is that a terms of service violation?
Rick, it's really an LT classic at this point. Martini versus the mob: http://www.librarything.com/talktopic.php?topic=32291 You even responded at one point.
Is it too much to ask Oakes to flag me? I feel like a proto-Howard Stern doing NPR morning drive time at this point.
If flags were dollars I'd buy Oakes a heart-shaped pool to flag me from.
I just skimmed through that thread, and thought people were on the whole pretty reasonable. Not everyone, but most of em. They handled a contentious issue pretty well for a random bunch of interneters IMO.
I totally agree--but I can't say I understand the contentiousness.
Um, A_, though, your review of Rick's book is fucking great. Now when I call Sasi a saint it's gonna seem so insincere.
Excellent work on the Wight Whale TC. Once again you leave most of us to splash around a bit in the wading pool.
Another fine review by baswood, though I heartily disagree about the Veneerings, et al. Who doesn't love a Twemlow?
chapt. 2 OMF
chapt. 33 OMF
Direct link to bas's review: http://www.librarything.com/work/4778104/reviews/84266435
MM wrote an amazing review of Arjun and the Good Snake--whether you read the book or not, read his review--his mind and prose in combo are a marvel.
And for you, Bas! You spoke truth simply. I feel like I was kissing the ring in comparison.
MM, I am going to wake in the night and wonder about that coconut demon.
Thumbs for TCM. Another foray into the mysteries of Melville.
Coming in late. Sybix and Martin, great reviews, although, Martin, you called me a suspicious fuck. And Murr, a contemplative review. I really enjoyed that.
Here is a link to Murr's LT portion on Redburn, which includes a link to the Lecturn: http://www.librarything.com/review/82163675
Sorry, Dan; I just say things for attention. Thanks for the kind words!
I was a particularly suspicious fuck, Martin, and will ever remain so.
it's rare to have a Lola review, so get yer thumbs out, salonistas! Great job, lolachen. This goes straight on the TBR.
Oh, great review, Lola! It's obviously a book I need to read now that I just got done reading Eichmann in Jerusalem - and I love Eco anyhow. (One of the things I did on my recent trip to Paris was visit their Musée de la Shoah and buy some books in their bookstore.)
Humbly submitting my Faulkner review of "As I lay dying"
I must agree with WS. A great poem, eh Mac?
thumbed, but jeezus mac, i have enough on my mind and have to read such a thorough review. I've said this before, but it's worth repeating: I wrote a novel in the same manner in the sense that various voices were speaking the book (I've actually never read As I Lay Dying) and my agent didn't know what to make of it, didn't like it, and finally a writer friend told him to take a look at As I Lay Dying.
Anyone have a good story about an agent?
Not likely, R.
Great stuff Mac. Faulkner's novel used to be one of my favorites. I took some classes in Ann Arbor with F's biographer, Joseph Blotner. I've told the tale somewhere here in Salon. I feel like RH in that I'm stretched to the limit for study time but you have me scrambling for my copy of AS I LAY; I think it may be at my Library East. Earlier this year I was going to cut back on my reading - scratch that idea, what.
These wells that shine and seem as shallow as pools,
These tales that, being too plain for the fool's eyes,
Incredibly clear are clearly incredible -
Truths by their depth deceiving more than lies.
thank you all !
About the Sound ant the Fury, I borrowed this link from the Folio society Group. IT seems Folio is going to publish the book using different colors for the different time-levels ;
Excellent stuff Mac. You have sparked the very first tiny interest I have ever felt in Faulkner.
Mac - Your essay is wonderful, although not sure it help clear me of my fear of Faulkner. I have this one lying around, carefully placed on a rarely looked at shelf (with other Faulkners and some Hemmingways, and Bellows...no clue why I put them all together. Haven't read any.).
a great essay mac, your best yet, I think.
Incidentally, there was a big brouhaha a few years ago, concerning Graham Swift's novel Last Orders, which won the Booker prize in 1996. Until someone literate pointed out that it was very closely based on Faulkner's As I lay dying, so closely as to be a virtual copy. THere were accusations of plagiarism, law suits threatened etc. lots of handringing about the fact that the judging panel hadn't noticed the resemblance to Faulkner's book, and were they therefore elligible for judging the major literary prize in English if they didn't know Faulkner etc etc. big Scandal. I haven't read either of the books, so I'm not in a position to judge. I have read sone Faulkner, the Sound and the fury, which is absolutely incredible, and The wild Palms, I think. Obviously I need to revisit him, a major writer of the first rank.
Well done mac, again.
Great review Bas ! How lucky you are to be able to add these books to your library !
Thumbs up and a Woohoooo
great review, Martini. you make the bible sound interesting and worth reading. Almost.
It probably would have gotten fewer stars without the support of a certain dchaikin. But thanks!
but Martini, it is such a pretty hate machine. I can think of it no other way now.
Now, let us bless our dear Murr, who has given us more on Melville(*)
(*Martin, Moses, Murr, Melville - mmmm)
Club Read's rebeccanyc takes on Europe Central: http://www.librarything.com/review/84285363
Recently joined salonista sibyx has a very nice review of the Tiptree novel up the world something (dammit this novel's name is hard for me) now i want to read it, and she also caused me to read up on Tiptree herself (who I had not heard of, as you all know sci fi is not one of my genres ...)
There's also Captain Mac's review of The turn of the Screw
thanks Por and TC, not much of a review I am afraid, but the edition is very interesting
When looking for an illustration for my post on this creepy James story, I stumbled on something even more creepy : Memento Mori, pictures of dead loved ones... In Victorian times, it seemed that people often took studio pictures of deceased family members ( mostly children ) as not to forget them. They would set them up in a studio, standing up with a device to keep them upright or lying down as if they were asleep. They would be dressed - and made - up to make them look alive, they even went so far to paint eyes on the close eyelids. It is really goolish and scary. I read somewhere that one in three pictures or daguerrotypes made in the lower classes in those days were Memento Mori.
I took the least shocking to illustrate James story and even now feel a bit akward of using such a picture. The little girl is probably dead. Her mother is sitting under the black cloak to keep her upright.
That is really really creepy. The idea of it's okay, but actually seeing it is CREEPY.
How terrified must that little boy be?
174 Some of those pics are really absurd if you imagine these kids holding a dead sibling.
Thumbed Mac and thanks for bringing to our attention the "Case Studies in Contemporary Criticism series." They look very interesting.
Murr, enjoyed the Mardi review. I'm probably 1/3 to 1/2 through but have set it aside for now. There is a lot on Mardi in Bruce Franklin and some of the other critics.
I tend to think your point on Melville's references being so extraordinarily broad is very much the reason to get lost in his oceans. The Herman-eutics are the thing, and can be immensely broadening.
I've been reading Melville's Quarrel with God by Lawrance Thompson, which includes a lot of discussion of Melville and Calvinism, and one of the problems Thompson chokes on is Melville's fascination with non-Christian religion, which seems mostly outside Thompson's areas of core interest. Thompson has trouble dealing with Melville's relationship with the Christian God because he is bound up in narrow concepts of the divine.
I've been reading a lot of and about Chinese poetry lately, and also reading a lot of the Americans who are inspired by the Chinese over the last century, like Pound, Rexroth, and Snyder, and coming to see things in those Americans I never saw before. A constant reminder that good literature is an inexhaustable mine.
So is memento mori any creepier than "death masks"? We do struggle to keep our dead alive to us.
On Henry James, I'm still trying to get my family to take an interest in buying the house of his muse, Clover Adams. It may be a bit of ramshackle fading glory, but it's ramshackle fading glory with a story, dammit. But someone telling your family stories of suicides doesn't really sell a house.
I don't know why but i felt a need to review the book The Kindly Ones by Jonathan Littell, but I don't know how to get it to appear as a blue link.
The Kindly Ones, Jonathan Littell Rick just put the square brackets either side of the title of the book and the author seperated by a comma.
oh I say, that's a bit Harsch. I thought Littell's book was a magnificent achievement through and through.
177> Thanks Sam. The Thompson sounds very interesting, I'm looking forward to reading more of your thoughts on it.
I try to give him his due as an historical novelist--actually I think I did manage that--but...you know, the nose bite (a last minute eruption, entirely unexpected, utterly unbelievable, too jarring for effective comic effect)--the cops...and the long, long period at his sister's place, attenuating what may have been fascinating to the point where what could have been among the most interesting aspects of the book becomes a bore...
Man the salon is dead right now. Here is a thing I wrote on the plane about an essay written by a clever history professor at my school. Attn especially tomcatMurr.
Mac -- There is a whole genre of painting dedicated to portraits of children who have died untimely -- I once saw an exhibit in a museum in Oslo that broke my heart completely. -- Anyhow. I think people who won't inoculate their children properly should all be given a booklet full of these photos and portraits. Most of the children died of measles and mumps and scarlet fever and all the diseases nobody dies of anymore in 1st world countries because most of us aren't fools.
Oh I got so worked up about this I forgot to say thank you to Anna!
I did publish something recently, but so obscure, that geez. It's in this month's issue of Folk Harp Journal. ONLY Anna could possibly want to read it since she is also a harpy, like me.
Oh I don't get the folk Harp Journal, I will have to ask my harp teacher to borrow that one! :)
Hey all, I just reviewed a really great novel, The Sadness of the Samurai. I highly recommend it (the novel, not the review, which is neither here nor there).
>185 Intriguing stuff, martini. I love the idea of Verse ohne Worte. I"m going to try some myself.
Well done Anna!
Well done Anna ! Nice post Martini !
Nice work, guys! I will be reading both of those. Golding is so underrated. Why is he so underrated?
Mac, be not umble! Excellent work.
When I was a kid I had Pincher Martin on my shelves for some reason and was terribly attracted to it, but it was, of course, beyond me and i never got past the opening sentence probably. I must redeem myself.
Now I will go see if i can determine whether Anna's review is here or there.
Pincher Martin is a blast !
How is the weather in your place ? Here it is raining. We never had a spring this year !
Bravo Anna: the review is there rather than here. But I am not grateful to the early review program because they won't include a feller in Slovenia.
It's been better than thar, but much more variation than the most common Adriatic spring. Quite often a chill is detected in the air that isn't there, once you get outside the warmth prevails--until you forget to bring a jacket and night falls two degrees cooler than comfortable. Whatever Bas says about the weather in southern France, it is always different here at that moment. I thnk it must be the tenuous nature of the Euro.
Nice ones mac and anna. nice one too martini although I am not sure I understood very much.
Don't worry, Bas, Martin has no idea himself, but he's very good at rapidly skating forth regardless. ZHIPHFHAHAN!
Shit, i didn't know he was lurking! BYRANGXG ZHIPHFHAHAN! But don't take that as an apology.
Brilliant mac. Why is Golding underrated? coz everyone is out reading YA fiction instead of good books? He's not underrated here in le salon.
pimping my review of Locke's argument with God! wooohooo!
thumbed ! I love this image of a Locke either not daring to forsake the God-idea or not mentally capable of denying it.
Murr, I'm not much here these days, but when I appear, and happen on one of your reviews, I am happy. You educate and amaze me. The Lectern is one of the best blogs around. Congratulations.
In case you missed it, Dan's excellent review of The Master and Margarita: http://www.librarything.com/work/10151/reviews/85689876
Remember this one ?
Thank you Muse. And thanks Porius & Murr, and Mac (And Lola) that thread is fantastic.
Rick's latest, with a marvelous final line: http://www.librarything.com/work/35551/reviews/86872085
Bas on Patrick White, great stuff - http://www.librarything.com/review/86957747
Thumbed. Bas goes down there where the drains go widershins. Great stuff indeed.
Okay, I liked the review, but i keep forgetting whether I am supposed to thumb or flag. I thumbed, but only of pettily, from spite for nationalism.
My question, though, is did not White win a Nobel Prize (back when they were worth something, before Obama got one), and if so, for what, body of work, Tree of Life, or what? I know I can look all this up, and I will, but I would like to hear what you, Bas, or anyone else might have to say about White--largely because this is the season during which I fill in large gaps, reading novels by English lingo writers, starting with Dickens and that lady with the man's name, she wrote Middlemarch, you KNOW...and then now I have before me Gass and Sorrentino and Gray and McElroy and Flan and Sammy and Donleavy...just finished Gladfist...and I see Kerr (Berlin Noir...for me for an ease up and then gift to emigrating Slovenes, emigrating to where the best Polish futboli go (Berlin, noirerlater)--all this to serve as a catch all: any other suggestions while the time is ripe (very): must I read White, if so how much and what, and who else...
who else? Take your pick from this, perhaps?
The only White I have read is Voss. I was much too young and it didn't do anything for me. But, my mother swears by him. Voss is her favourite book. My mother is never wrong. And Baz's tour through W's work is really whetting my appetite for him. He's definitely a writer I want to get to.
Great work, Baz.
Rick, Patrick White won the Nobel prize "for an epic and psychological narrative art which has introduced a new continent into literature"
If we were being cynical we might think it was because the panel felt that it was about time they gave the prize to an Australian writer
I am reading all of White's novels this year for no other reason than it is the centenary year of his birth and I have liked what I have read in the past. Its Albert Camus centenary next year.
Awesome list TC - so much to read.
Camus' centenary! We need to read something in the salon to celebrate that! The only things I read by him were the stranger and the plague (and I only read the plague last year) but I am always telling people "he's my favorite existentialist" like I know so much about it. (What a poseur.)
Anna, Camus had his poseur side, too. But I think that as his novels are so often read, maybe The Rebel would be a good group read.
Bas, If we were being cynical we would dwell on the color of his name as well.
TC, I'm mostly thinking of English language folk I have unfairly overlooked...now I will count the books on your list I have read.
At least 41, some I can't recall, usually because I didn't much like them and may have stopped. There are probably an equal number I would still like to read and those I am sure I would not. I love seeing the Breakdance of the Bicameral Mind on there, that obcure sneaky oddity. I won't read Anna Karenina, but hope that when I finally read The Demons (or Possessed?) I will have made up for it. I don't recall whether or not I finished Herzog because though I liked Augie March well enough I was repulsed by everything else by Bellow and to the degree he got near me in media by the man himself. Thucydides I wanted to lie to myself about, but I haven't read it, just stretches. The Republic shouldn't count because it was over 30 years ago. And so on.
Bas, I just saw the review and am very interested. I haven't read any White myself, shame on me. Why was it a success in England and America I wonder? We wonder why not a success in Australia, but what about the reverse question? Is it not a success here because we don't want to face the Aboriginal Question which is all too hard - or is it because Australian hardships are romantic to people who aren't from here...? I'm sure I'm being too simplistic though.
I really like the review. It conveys the idea of P White which I had of him before - that he's quite inaccessible both stylistically and sorta humanly, if you know what I mean.
The fact that Laura and Voss are outsiders would probably not be the off-putting thing. Globally, we ourselves are outsiders, so we get into the habit of seeing ourselves from the outside, as most minority groups do.
Murr, I have often browsed through that list of yours and made ambitious plans. I think I'll ease into it and start with Bleak House. I can handle Dickens. :)
Interesting thoughts Muse, especially about Australians seeing themselves from the outside.
yes, I don't know how right I am about that though. Can't speak for everyone!
'Recently finished The Hour of the Star; my enjoyment was bolstered by those wonderful reviews by Anna, Solla, Martini and Samusing.
Mac, not sure 'bout the highbrow read, as I'm immersed in a couple reading projects right now (the biggest entails many things with a common China theme, whether mercans inspired by China or Chinese lit itself). But if there's a book named, you never know when I'm tempted. Sea-side dog, I hope you enjoyed it as much as I! It's one of the great gifts the Salon has given. I loved that book.
Muse, great questions, some questions that I think are interesting for many countries (why some are more popular abroad). But "used to seeing yourself from the outside" - that's got to be more unique. Smaller countries often, perhaps, but Australia is a big place.
Only land-wise, Sam. Population-wise, don't we equal Tokyo? Not sure about that one, but a quick Google search tells me the comparative population of the two countries:
127 million Japan
23 million Australia
Still, I'm really doubting my own statement. There are some awfully narrow-minded people around. A lot of them, too. I can't imagine them seeing themselves from the outside in any way at all, except with a mirror.
"Globally, we ourselves are outsiders, so we get into the habit of seeing ourselves from the outside, as most minority groups do."
"There are some awfully narrow-minded people around. A lot of them, too. I can't imagine them seeing themselves from the outside in any way at all, except with a mirror."
Both statements are true, and for me, illustrate the contradictory nature of Australian society. There is a strange mixture of being able to look at ourselves honestly and an absolute refusal to look at what doesn't play with our notion of ourselves as the land of golden sunshine, opportunities for all, the "lucky country". Our reputation for being laidback and welcoming, our extremely diverse cultural make-up, by no means a new thing, and a disturbing (and seemingly ever-increasing) insularity. A staunch, independent, almost defiant Little Red Hen style underdoggedness (?) and an almost tail-between-the-legs need for approval from the "big" nations (what is the question you can absolutely guarantee ANY popular media outlet will ask a visiting foreign notable?).
Your thoughts do make me wonder if we are becoming less accustomed to seeing ourselves and more to being told what we are from the outside? There seems to be an increase in many people's need to "protect" a mythologised Australia. Small snatches of this Australia I recognise, but it certainly isn't where I live.
Please do not let the football lesson Spain just gave to Italy, make you miss Bas brillant review of Burgess bio of Lawrence.
Thumbed Bas, well written and interesting. Another one on my TBR
Thumbed. Great work as always Bas. Burgess on Lawrence, hard to go wrong.
letterpress, I've been away and only just seen your interesting comments. The protecting of a mythologised Australia is indeed a worrisome thing. I want to hide under the bed every Australia Day. Especially because that 'myth' is so very white, dogmatic and xenophobic. Summed up in those awful bumper stickers: "Australia - if you don't love it, LEAVE it". And big tough blokes with patriotic tattoos. It ain't simple patriotism, but much more sinister than that. Makes me very afraid.
All the same, I'd much rather be seeking approval from the big countries than to actually be a big country.
Off to read bas's review :)
Thumbs for Choc's excellent review of GT's VENUS AND THE VOTERS. She gets it just right. What are endings anyway. There's a Dive-in-i-tee that shapes our ends, isn't there.
Talking football. Give Spain their two injured guys and eight off the bench plus goalman Casillas and they win again.
Thumbs for Bas wherever you are.
Thumbs for Bas. I spotted Guy Davenport in there somewhere. Who-ray. Halla-lou-ya. Well allright. Four-give those who have dressed up against us.
Bring out your thumbs. Bas on Gardner's The Alliterative Morte Arthure: http://www.librarything.com/review/87885991
I thumbed Bas, but where are the rest of our reviewers? Do I really have to read another fucking book?
I Thumbed Bas too !
I read two fucking books this holiday : Patrick Leigth Fermor and one by whatshisname
More from Bas, on Patrick White this time: http://www.librarything.com/review/88061387
Thumbed Bas !
My turn, A time of gifts, not much of a review but a nice book.
I'm fascinated Mac...but I only have one thumb.
ETA - er, I mean LT only allows one. I do actually have two...
thanks dear friends. Patrick Leigh Fermor is a travel writer, I know, most of you would enjoy.
Excellent review of the Patrick Leigh Fermor, mac. He was a brilliant travel writer. I love his Mani: Travels in the Southern Peloponnese. The Mani Peninsula used to be my favourite holiday destination.
I didn't know where else to put this odd one. On Friday night, I'll be presenting a book in Maribor in Glavni trg, or 'Main Square', which was where Hitler spoke when he visited Maribor in 1941, exhorting his followers and others to make Maribor the German city it was aching to be.
Last brush with Hitler was before his Vienna apartment building where, providentially, I stepped in dog shit.
Have to. My novel is an assassination satire--a Slovene killed while running in the first national free election--In English Kramberger with Monkey. Kramberger was a peripatetic oddball, driving his self-assembled Bugatti and speaking with a monkey on his shoulder, selling books he wrote, I gather political, travelling constantly it seems: so naturally he too spoke more than once at this same place. Some joke seems incumbent upon me.
So you wrote in Slovene? Or in English and it was translated cos it was the Slovenes who wanted to take a chance on a kd with a dream?
Here he is, couldn't find a pic with chimp.
the book is translated--i'll try to post a picture (then you get the monkey)
Geez, Rick, I think you're the first guy I've met whose shaggy beard made him look less insane.
I'm not being facetious, but I could have said it in a kinder way.
Again, I have humor spies, and believe me, if they find out you're making fun of me...Well, off to join Hitler in history!
which picture are we looking at ?
Med, that is not Rick, it is Kramberger ! And that is not a beard, it is a monkey !
Thinking interesting thoughts about Rick declaiming in the squere. Expecting a full report!
well, you see, it went like this...as i was declaiming on a book about assassinations I had to berate the Slovenes, much as I hate to use the national collective, for not zapping Hitler in 1941 when he was in that very same square...but lest i be accused of exhorting folk to assassination i said i was not one to do such a thing, so maybe i couldn't ask them to, and i told them that if Angela turned up where Hitler did, a story up from where I was, I would certainly do no more than nail her with a ripe to rotten tomato...but then I got to thinking and so said on the other hand should one of the US revolving door presidents be found speaking in Glavni trg of Maribor perhaps some Slovene or venes could make up for what they missed on April 26 1941...
Next morning I was in Židovski trg, the small Jewish Square, which has a tower from the year 1465 that was one of the original corners of the old town fort. At a small street fair I got a great cigarette box--leather over metal, pushes the smokes up when you open it--stamped Praha, for only two euros.
Ha, thanks bas. I was gonna edit it for ponderous repetitiveness, but now I guess it's too late:)
You were going to ADD ponderous repetetiveness? Bad idea, Martin. Re the insane: When I was living and writing in La Crosse, Wisconsin, I carried this giant bag, maybe an old physicians bag, and i visited a lawyer I knew just enough that he knew I wasn't insane, but he told me that anyone else walked into his office with such a bag and they would know immediately they were dealing with a nut bag.
off to read and thumb
Read, thumbed, but Martin--how bad does a book have to be to get none or one star(s)?
Shit. Caps lock. Now I'm the one who looks crazy.
Anyway, I don't give no-star reviews because that strikes me as tantamount to saying "this book doesn't exist," although an account dedicated to reviewing imaginary books does have potential in a sort of Borgesian way. I've given sixteen 1/2-star reviews (out of 1156 in all) in six years of 'thinging. I've posted several of them here before, so I won't again, but they include many webcomics and regular comics, a guidebook for Rome that didn't come with a map, a Chick Tract, a book about Jews controlling the world from an American neo-Nazi organization, Hegel: A Guide for the Perplexed (even more perplexing than Hegel!), Let's Talk About Being Messy by Joy Berry, The Octopus by Frank Norris, and suchlike.
As for Stranger in a Strange Land, I don't think it was all that awful--just that I remembered it being really great when I was like 15, and Heinlein didn't realize how comical his ideas about men and women would seem in the eyes of future--or indeed, past--generatiions. It was all right/kinda disappointing.
Thumbs for Bas & Machiavelli
Check out Martini's wonderful discourse on Memoirs of an Arabian Princess from Zanzibar.
Interesting Med and thumbed. Never heard about her.
This is the second time this week, I hear the name Stonetown mentioned as the old part of the Zanzibar capital. I have always known it as Mkongwe. When did it change ? Is that the official name now ?
Where did you find that book ?
I did a bit of digging, but couldn't find where the name comes from (besides the obvious). A nickname from the British era? Tourist marketing? It is the name under which it is recognized by UNESCO, if that counts as "official."
I got it in the palace museum (the Beit al-Ajaib, on the boardwalk). They have a room dedicated to her. After the failed coup she was a part of, she was sort-of-semi-imprisoned in the palace next door, which is where she met her husband--he would serenade her with dinner parties on his roof for her amusement, and she would look down from her adjacent balcony Juliet-style. But yeah, really interesting person. Sort of a reverse Mary Wortley Montagu.
brilliantly entertaining review of what sounds like a fascinating book. thumbed!
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