Tuesday, March 18, 2014

a world event


Harvard University Press has published a new book. When I think about this book, which I haven't read, I get a strange feeling in the literary-philosophical-cultural zone of my consciousness. That sensation is, paradoxically, a becalmed mania, as if I'm riding a dizzy Ferris wheel while puffing on a Turkish hookah. Just knowing this book exists pleases me very much. 

Read about it here:

"Walter Benjamin's Afterlife"

And here's something cool:



  1. Being a savorer-of-books (otherwise known by the banal term of "reader"), I'll venture to provide a smithering of quotes of Benjamin's from a book I'm reading.

    "What was it that Proust sought so frenetically?.............Jean Cocteau was able to say in a beautiful essay that the intonation of Proust's voice obeyed the laws of night and honey. By submitting to these laws he conquered the hopeless sadness within him.........and form the honeycombs of memory he built a house for the swarm of his thoughts. Cocteau....recognized Prousts' blind, senseless, frenzied quest for happiness. It shone from his eyes; they were not happy, but in them lay fortune as it lies in gambling or in love......There is a dual will to happiness, a dialectics of happiness: a hymnic and an elegiac form...It is this elegiac idea of happiness--it could also be called Ealeatic--which for Proust transforms existence into a preserve of memory."

    1. Beautiful! Thank you for that quote.

    2. Нет проблем--no problem, as they say. But do transpose "form" into "from" when you are reading the quote above, and it will make much more sense.