Anti-Matter: Michel Houellebecq and Depressive Realism by Ben Jeffery

By Ben Jeffery

Michel Houellebecq, writer of 5 novels including Atomised and Platform, has develop into almost certainly the world’s most renowned literary pessimist. His paintings publicizes that lifestyles is painful and disappointing, loss of life is terrifying, and the human is a foul type of comic story. He has been wildly profitable – translated into over 25 assorted languages and hailed because the voice of a iteration. starting with Houellebecq’s novels, this publication explores the concept that of ‘Depressive Realism’ in literature and philosophy – the proposition that the proof of lifestyles are bleak and unkind. Ranging over paintings by means of David Foster Wallace, Susan Sontag, Fredric Jameson and Margaret Atwood, Anti-Matter surveys the case for pessimism, asks how a mass tradition rooted in sentimentality and trivialisation manages to provide a lot cynicism and apathy, and hunts for the distance that continues to be for critical, life-affirming artwork.

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Robert Maynard Hutchins (1899–1977), president of the University of Chicago from 1929 to 1951 and chairman of the Board of Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica from 1943 to 1974. The University of Chicago 27 was a pair of trousers so thick with grime, they stood up by themselves. So he threw those out. In the spring, the Grenes came back. Mrs. ” He was furious. ” But they were later reconciled. Ronna: Bloom and Grene? Seth: Yes. PETER HEINRICH VON BLANCKENHAGEN Robert: Did you ever take a course with Blanckenhagen?

And he never allowed anybody to pause. If you wanted to translate, you had to translate at lightning speed, otherwise he would interrupt if you stopped. He would say, “yes,” and then he would go on, absolutely flawlessly. So if you wanted to get through, you had to learn how to do it very rapidly. I remember one day I was coming down the steps of the library of the classics department, which used to be on the second and third floor of one of the buildings. Einarson was coming up the steps at the same time, carrying in two columns in his hands a pile of books.

Seth: He was much more reticent in class than he was in the tutorials. Years later, he would say in class what he had said in the tutorials but had not said at that time. Ronna: He’d try things out in the tutorials? Seth: Maybe that was it. He was much more cautious in public. Michael: Was your Strauss everybody’s Strauss? Seth: I don’t think so. Michael: Did the students have disagreements they discussed? Seth: I know there was a disagreement with Gourevitch, very early, who was suspicious of this historical scholarship, and saw it as contradictory, with regard to the antihistoricism.

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