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The Passing of Kate Millet – Artist, Author, a Pioneer Feminist at 82 -(Sept 14, 1934 – Sept 6, 2017)

September 7th, 2017
  • Kate Millet by Alice Neel – 1970

    Kate Millet an influential feminist writer is dead at 82 (NYtimes)

    .

    Katherine Murray Millett was born on Sept 14, 1934, in St. Paul.
    She attended Oxford University and was the first American woman to be awarded a postgraduate degree with first-class honors after studying at St Hilda’s College, Oxford.
    The feminist, human rights, peace, civil rights, and anti-psychiatry movements were some of Millett’s principal causes. Her books were motivated by her activism, such as woman’s rights and mental health reform, and several were autobiographical memoirs that explored her sexuality, mental health, and relationships. Mother Millett and The Loony Bin Trip, for instance, dealt with family issues and the times when she was involuntarily committed to a nursing home. (via her wiki

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    Dinner for One – 1967 – Kate Millet

    See more art by Kate Millet here

  • “The Basement” was disturbing but I had to read it.
    Here is a review of the Basement by Duncan Mitchell

    Happy Kate katemillett by Hyder in 1994.

    Her homepage is here. – AN INVITATION TO THE WOMEN’S ART COLONY/FARM

    Of course she went to Iran.

    In 1981 Millett published Going to Iran, which was a new journalistic account of a trip she made to Iran in March 1979 to address Iranian feminists on International Women’s Day. The Shah of Iran had just abdicated, and the Ayatollah Khomeini had not yet fully consolidated his power. Nevertheless, Millett was soon expelled by the fundamentalist government for her feminist views. The chronicle is recorded in the rigorously honest style of her earlier works. (via)

  • Kate Millet

    The Return of the Troublemaker (June 2001)

    Society has lost its patience. So why isn’t she more downhearted? She smiles and says it’s because she is having too much fun. “I love making trouble. It’s a wonderful job. You don’t get paid but you have a lot of adventures.”

  • Flying with Kate Millet (previous post)
    Sexual Politics was circulated before the publication of her thesis.

  • Immersive Exhibit “Arcades” Brings Walter Benjamin Back to Life -2017

    May 11th, 2017
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    Benjamin’s passport photograph from 1928 – courtesy of the Walter Benjamin Archiv, Berlin.
    Photo via

  • New Yorker(Walter Benjamin’s Unfinished Magnum Opus Revisited)

    Take a Stroll Through Philosopher Walter Benjamin’s Brain at New NY Exhibit

    ‘It’s like the Talmud, there is commentary and sub-commentary’
    Take a stroll through philosopher Walter Benjamin’s brain at new NY exhibit
    His tragic death in the Holocaust cut short the Jewish thinker’s 1,000 page opus.
    Through August 6, the Jewish Museum in New York’s immersive exhibit ‘Arcades’ brings it to life

  • Berlin Benjamin1 Childhood
    Name these children (arcade on FB)

  • Walter Benjamin (W.B for dummies on youtube)

  • Port Bou benjaminportpu
    Border crossing resting place

    On Truth
    Nothing is poorer than a truth expressed as it was thought. Committed to writing in such cases, it is not even a bad photograph. Truth wants to be startled abruptly, at one stroke, from her self-immersion, whether by uproar, music or cries for help. Walter Benjamin

  • The Story Teller by Walter Benjamin (Guardian Review)

  • R I P Robert Pirsig – Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenace + Lila

    April 24th, 2017
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    Robert M. Pirsig

    “His well known book ‘Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance’ was rejected by 121 publishers.”

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    Early photos

    Lila (wiki)

    NYtimes obit

    One of Mr. Pirsig’s central ideas is that so-called ordinary experience and so-called transcendent experience are actually one and the same — and that Westerners only imagine them as separate realms because Plato, Aristotle and other early philosophers came to believe that they were.

    But Plato and Aristotle were wrong, Mr. Pirsig said. Worse, the mind-body dualism, soldered into Western consciousness by the Greeks, fomented a kind of civil war of the mind — stripping rationality of its spiritual underpinnings and spirituality of its reason, and casting each into false conflict with the other.

    In his part gnomic, part mechanic’s style, Mr. Pirsig’s narrator declares that the real world is a seamless continuum of the material and metaphysical.

    “The Buddha, the Godhead,” he writes, “resides quite as comfortably in the circuits of a digital computer or the gears of a cycle transmission as he does at the top of a mountain or in the petals of a flower.”

    Gramsci & Cultural Hegemony, Portraits by Francis Picabia, Portrait of Strindberg by Munch

    January 21st, 2017
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    Portrait of Gramsci by Leopold Mendez

    Antonio Gramsci (Italian Ales (Sardinia), 22 January 1891 – Rome, 27 April 1937) was an Italian writer, politician, political theorist, philosopher, sociologist, and linguist. He was a founding member and onetime leader of the Communist Party of Italy and was imprisoned by Benito Mussolini’s Fascist regime.
    Gramsci was one of the most important Marxist thinkers in the 20th century. He is a notable figure within modern European thought and his writings analyze culture and political leadership. He is known for his theory of cultural hegemony, which describes how states use cultural institutions to maintain power in capitalist societies. (wiki)

    Cultural Hegemony

  • Francis_Picabia,_1919,_Danse_de_Saint-Guy,_The_Little_Review

    Francis Picabia – 22 January 1879 – November 30

    See more Picabia Perpetual Movement (previous post)

  • Gertrude gertrude-stein Stein by Francis Picabia

  • <> <> <> Picabia_Self-portrait_with_hands__1932

  • August Strindberg / Gem. v. Munch
    Portrait of August Strindberg by Edward Munch

  • Ingmar Bergman on August Strindberg (see a video)

    Ingmar and Lena Olin Fršken Julie av Agust Strindberg
    Miss Julie – Ingmar directing Lena Olin

    August Strindberg was born on Jan 22 1849.

  • August Strindberg by Schonberg

    John Berger dies at 90 & Tilda’s film on John Berger

    January 2nd, 2017
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    John Berger dies aged 90.

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    A meditation, in words and images, on the practice of drawing, by the author of Ways of Seeing
    The seventeenth-century philosopher Baruch Spinoza—also known as Benedict or Bento de Spinoza—spent the most intense years of his short life writing. He also carried with him a sketchbook. After his sudden death, his friends rescued letters, manuscripts, notes—but no drawings.

    For years, without knowing what its pages might hold, John Berger has imagined finding Bento’s sketchbook, wanting to see the drawings alongside his surviving words. When one day a friend gave him a beautiful virgin sketchbook, Berger said, “This is Bento’s!” and he began to draw, taking his inspiration from the philosopher’s vision.

    In this illustrated color book John Berger uses the imaginative space he creates to explore the process of drawing, politics, storytelling and Spinoza’s life and times.

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    Tilda Swinton on making ‘The Seasons in Quincy’, four short films about maverick artist and thinker John Berger.

    For Swinton, making the film was a chance to spend time with someone who had become a firm friend. “I wanted a glimpse of his gimlet eye and a blast of his company,” is how she puts it. “I went to find him in Quincy for a check-in, for a catch-up, for a chinwag.”

  • Previous post – Way of Seeubg – John Bergmer.

    “Never again will a single story be told as though it were the only one.” John Berger.. (Michael Ondaatjie quoted J.B. in his forward of his novel In the Skin of a Lion)

  • John Berger collaborated with Swiss filmmaker Alain Tanner who made inspiring films in the 70’s – (Tanner’s Messidor was remade as Thelma and Louise in Hollywood).

    Revisionsing Europe the films of John Berger and Alain Tanner

    is among the few existing English-language discussions of the films made by British novelist John Berger and Swiss film director Alain Tanner. It brings to light a political cinema that was unsentimental about the possibilities of revolutionary struggle and unsparing in its critique of the European left, and at the same time optimistic about the ability of radicalism and radical art to transform the world

    “Un Homme de Fragment”, The Last Laugh of the Melancholy Philosopher Emil Cioran

    December 1st, 2016
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    The Philosopher of Failure: Emil Cioran’s Heights of Despair
    -By Costica Bradatan

    On Two types of societies –

    All societies are bad; but there are degrees, I admit, and if I have chosen this one, it is because I can distinguish among the nuances of trumpery” .

    Emil Cioran (1911–1995) was a Romanian-born French philosopher and author of some two dozen books of savage, unsettling beauty. He is an essayist in the best French tradition, and even though French was not his native tongue, many think him among the finest writers in that language. His writing style is whimsical, unsystematic, fragmentary; he is celebrated as one of the great masters of aphorism. But the “fragment” was for Cioran more than a writing style: it was a vocation and a way of life; he called himself “un homme de fragment.”

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    Emil Cioran (wiki) The Melancholy thinker..

    Regarding God, Cioran has noted that “without Bach, God would be a complete second rate figure” and that “Bach’s music is the only argument proving the creation of the Universe cannot be regarded a complete failure”.

    William H. Gass called Cioran’s work “a philosophical romance on the modern themes of alienation, absurdity, boredom, futility, decay, the tyranny of history, the vulgarities of change, awareness as agony, reason as disease”. (via wki)

    (repost, see other philosophers)

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    10 Delightfully Surly Books for the Relentless Pessimist

    (via)

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    A further glimpse into Cioran’s peculiar manner of political thinking, in a letter he sent to Mircea Eliade in 1935: “My formula for all things political,” he writes, “is the following: fight wholeheartedly for things in which you do not believe.” Not that such a confession brings much clarity to Cioran’s involvement, but it places his “ravings” within a certain psychological perspective. This split personality characterized the later Cioran, and it makes sense, for a philosopher who sees the world as a failure of grand proportions, to mock the cosmic order (and himself in the process) by pretending that there is some meaning where there is none. You know that everything is pointless, but by behaving as if it wasn’t, you manage to articulate your dissent and undermine the designs of the “evil demiurge.” And you do that with boundless irony and humor, which is rigorously meant to counter the divine farce. He who laughs last laughs hardest.

    Coffee and Cigarettes – Cafe Society + Sartre & John Huston

    June 20th, 2016
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    Coffee and Cigarettes – Cate Blanchet in two roles.

    Jim Jarmusch dedicated Broken Flower to Jean Eustache

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    The Mother and The Whore directed by Jean Eustache.

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    (Picasso, Beauvoir, Sartre, Camus and Picasso’s dog)

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    Simone de Beauvoir - Paris with Sartre, Chicago with Nelson Algren.

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    Monty Clift as Freud

  • Sartre and John Huston

    Open Culture – Jean Paul Sartre writes a script for John Huston’s film on Freud

    Emerson,Raymond Carver & Theodore Rothke – American Originals

    May 25th, 2016
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    Ralph Waldo Emerson -b. May 25, 1803

    1) When asked to sum up his work, he said his central doctrine was “the infinitude of the private man.” Emerson is also well known as a mentor and friend of fellow Transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau (via wiki )
    Walt Whitman sent a copy of Leaves of Grass to Emerson.
    Emerson was strongly influenced by the Vedas, and much of his writing has strong shades of nondualism. One of the clearest examples of this can be found in his essay “The Over-soul”:

    Quotes by Emerson

    Children are all foreigners.

    Democracy becomes a government of bullies tempered by editors.

    Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.

    Don’t be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

    Emerson tweets
    – What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think
    – I can find my biography in every fable.

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    Raymond Carver -b. May 25, 1938

  • Prose as Architecture: two interviews with Raymond Carver

    Suppose I say summer,
    write the word “hummingbird,”
    put it in an envelope,
    take it down the hill
    to the box. When you open
    my letter you will recall
    those days and how much,
    just how much, I love you.
    Raymond Carver

    Dreams Are What We Wake Up From, directed by Daisy Goodwin. (Youtube)

  • Theodore Rothke 1acunninghamRothke

    b. May 25, 1908
    photo by Imogen Cunningham, 1959

    MY PAPA’S WALTZ

    The whiskey on your breath
    Could make a small boy dizzy;
    But I hung on like death:
    Such waltzing was not easy.

    We romped until the pans
    Slid from the kitchen shelf;
    My mother’s countenance
    Could not unfrown itself.

    The hand that held my wrist
    Was battered on one knuckle;
    At every step you missed
    My right ear scraped a buckle.

    You beat time on my head
    With a palm caked hard by dirt,
    Then waltzed me off to bed
    Still clinging to your shirt.

  • 5 Poems by Rothke on youtube here.

  • In the Name of Umberto Eco, We Salute the Enigma of his Passing.

    February 19th, 2016
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    Italian author and philosopher Umberto Eco dies at 84

  • A great Italian semiotician, essayist, philosopher, literary critic, and novelist has gone where names of roses never fade – – Citizen 5

  • His homepage

  • Playing music with Umberto Eco and His Wife his wife.

  • Paris Review – Umberto Eco

  • His quotes –

    “Then why do you want to know?”

    Because learning does not consist only of knowing what we must or we can do, but also of knowing what we could do and perhaps should not do.”

    I developed a passion for the Middle Ages the same way some people develop a passion for coconuts.

    I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

  • Further, Umberto Eco is an expert on the subject of 007, which adds him to the worldwide group of bondologs (“Bondologists,” Scandinavian expression for an expert in the field of James Bond).

    Umberto on Lists.

    The Meeting of Thomas Merton and D.T. Suzuki + Loui Loui Played Bongo

    January 31st, 2016
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  • “I sat with Suzuki on the sofa and we talked of all kinds of things to do with Zen and with life … For once in a long time I felt as if I had spent a few moments with my own family.” (Dancing in the Water of Life, pp. 116-117)

    “One had to meet this man in order to fully appreciate him. He seemed to me to embody all the indefinable qualities of the “Superior Man” of the ancient Asian, Taoist, Confucian, and Buddhist traditions. Or, rather in meeting him one seemed to meet that “True Man of No Title”, that Chuang Tzu and Zen Masters speak of. And of course this is the man one really wants to meet. Who else is there? In meeting Dr. Suzuki and drinking a cup of tea with him I felt I had met this one man. It was like finally arriving at one’s own home.” (Zen and the Birds of Appetite, p. 61)

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  • Thomas Merton met D.T. Suzuki in NYC in 1964

    “Without contact with living examples, we soon get lost or give out …. He really understands what interior simplicity is all about and really lives it. This is the important thing.” (Letter to Anglican priest, Fr. Aelred, Dec. 8, 1964, The School of Charity, p. 254)

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    Happy birthday louie louie. He is a good photographer

  • Merton Dalai Lama

    Ubu Roi – Pataphysical Life of Alfred Jarry

    September 8th, 2015
  • Ubu 1alfredUburoi Roi
    Ubu Roi

    It is considered a wild, bizarre and comic play, significant for the way it overturns cultural rules, norms, and conventions. For those who were in the audience on that night to witness the response, including William Butler Yeats, it seemed an event of revolutionary importance. It is now seen by some to have opened the door for what became known as modernism in the twentieth century. It is a precursor to Dada, Surrealism and Theatre of the Absurd. It is the first of three stylised burlesques in which Jarry satirises power, greed, and their evil practices—in particular the propensity of the complacent bourgeoisie to abuse the authority engendered by success.

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    Alfred Jarry
    Born 8 September 1873
    Laval, Mayenne, France
    Died 1 November 1907 (aged 34)
    Paris, France

    Guardian-
    Alfred Jarry: A Pataphysical Life by Alastair Brotchie – review

    Both Burroughs and Ballard were inspired by him, he had a profound influence on the British authors associated with New Worlds magazine, and was admired by artists from Duchamp to Paolozzi as well as any number of playwrights, including Artaud, Beckett and Ionesco. His posthumous Exploits and Opinions of Dr Faustroll, Pataphysician has been cited several of today’s most innovative authors. This fine biography, written with loving honesty by Alastair Brotchie, is the best to date.

    The Fiction duo (J.G. Ballard and Alfred Jarry)

    Raymond Queneau, Jean Genet, Eugène Ionesco, Boris Vian were Pataphysics followers.


  • Jarry’s Bike (previous post)

    Alfred Jarry was played by an actress, Annette Robertson in Always on Sunday (a film by Ken Russell on Henri Rousseau’s bio pic)

  • Oliver Sacks, An Explorer, Who was Our Brain & Heart Moved On at 82

    August 30th, 2015
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    Oliver Sacks, doctor of ‘Awakenings’ and poet laureate of medicine, dies at 82

    New Yorker

    As both a physician and as a writer, Sacks’s two great themes were identity and adaptation.
    Oliver Sacks, the Doctor
    By Jerome Groopman

    Temple Grandin’s moving tribute to Oliver Sacks here. (How Oliver changed her life from Wired)

    I’m a visual thinker, and Oliver’s definitely not a visual thinker; he’s a word thinker. But when it came to describing my mind, that’s where he got me right. He was extremely good at getting inside the heads of people who had these different types of neurological disorders.

    Oliver Sacks blog

    See my Oliver Sack’s Archive.
    The Music Never Stopped

    Oliver Sack – On the move

  • “Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and adventure.” Oliver Sacks