Monthly Archives: March 2011

Seven Random Things

At the wonderfully named Dada doesn’t catch flies, one of my favourite bloggers has challenged me to share seven things things about myself. I normally shy away from such invitations but reluctantly accept the proposition, perhaps it will be therapeutic. … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Personals, The Joy of Lists | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner

I am a serendipitous reader, allowing chance references to lead me meanderingly from book to book, author to author. The timing of my discovery of Rebecca’s Classics Circuit was impeccable, hard on the discovery of William Faulkner’s influence on Beauvoir. Sartre … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Shared Reading | Tagged , , , | 13 Comments

The World is a Book

A few days ago I asked, “What are your favourite literary travel books?” Thank you for your suggestions, added to mine below to compile a quintessential shelf of travel literature: Flaubert in Egypt: A Sensibility on Tour – Gustave Flaubert … Continue reading

Posted in The Joy of Lists, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Bartleby the Scrivener by Herman Melville

Not what I expected, Melville’s Bartleby the Scrivener. I presumed the story to be revolutionary in tone, a fictional refusal to work sympathetic with Paul Lafargue’s The Right to be Lazy: The Greeks in their era of greatness had only contempt … Continue reading

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Literature of Travel

Yesterday I wrote of Sartre the traveller, whom BHL esteemed above all for his literature of travel: And I am convinced, be it said in passing, that the day when the ideology of tourism is finally brought to a discourse … Continue reading

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An Absence in my Library

Philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy, so prominent (and frequently ridiculed) in France that he is simply referred to as BHL, is credited with encouraging Sarkozy’s support for anti-Gaddafi forces in Libya. His website’s subtitle is ‘The Art of Philosophy is Only Worthwhile if … Continue reading

Posted in Literature in Translation, Philosophy | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

One Thing Lead to Another

In between Simone de Beauvoir and William Faulkner, I read Stephen Fry’s Incomplete and Utter History of Classical Music as told to Tim Lihorean. The book served my purpose, which was to provide a contextual structure for the major composers, … Continue reading

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The Prime of Life by Simone de Beauvoir

Halfway into The Prime of Life, Simone de Beauvoir signals to the reader of her autobiography that: I still believe to this day in the theory of the ‘transcendental ego.’ The self (moi) has only a probable objectivity, and anyone saying … Continue reading

Posted in Autobiography, Literature in Translation | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

The Weekend

Last night’s opera was unfamiliar. I commend the Royal Opera House’s commissioning of new opera. They should do it more frequently. The life of Anna Nicole Smith was vaguely familiar to me, but made a suitably dramatic and tragic subject … Continue reading

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