larvatus: (rock)
Extrait d’une lettre adressée à M. le chevalier de Rossi en Saint-Pétersbourg, le 15 (27) août 1811.     From a letter addressed to Mr. the chevalier de Rossi in Saint-Petersburg, 15 (27) August 1811.
2o Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle mérite. De longues réflexions, et une longue expérience payée bien cher, m’ont convaincu de cette vérité comme d’une proposition de mathématiques. Tout loi est donc inutile, et même funeste (quelque excellente qu’elle puisse être en elle-même), si la nation n’est pas digne de la loi et faite pour la loi.
    Jadis le czar de Géorgie sortait tous les matins à cheval pour rendre la justice : il parcourait lentement les rues de Tiflis. Les plaideurs arrivaient, et disaient leurs raisons. Le czar donnait et faisait donner des coups de bâton à celui qui avait tort ou trop tort. Un Géorgien disait dernièrement, le plus sérieusement du monde, à mon frère, qui me l’a écrit : Eh bien ! Monsieur, on a remarqué que ces princes se trompaient très-rarement. Ils regrettent donc très-sincèrement cette vieille justice de rue ; et quant à la nouvelle que les Russes leur ont portée, qui procède par forme, par délais, par écriture, ils ne peuvent pas la tolérer, ils en sont malades ; et qui leur rapporterait la bâtonomie leur ferait un plaisir infini. Il y a chez nos vieilles nations d’Europe mille finesses que je crois très-fort au-dessus des Russes, du moins tels que je les connais dans ce moment. Le recours direct au souverain (ou la plainte) est une idée enracinée dans le plus profond de leurs cœurs ; et même, pour l’honneur de la souveraineté, elle est plus ou moins naturelle à tous les hommes. Je ne crois pas que l’opinion publique puisse être violée sur ce point. Il n’était pas malaisé, ce semble, de trouver le moyen qui aurait tout sauvé, en donnant seulement à la plainte, lorsqu’elle aurait été admise, la force de renvoyer la cause au plenum (ou chambres assemblées, suivant notre style).
Every nation has the government that it deserves. Lengthy reflection, and experience acquired at great cost, have convinced me of this truth as if it were a mathematical proposition. All law is useless and even fatal (however excellent it may be in itself), if the nation is not worthy of law and made for law.
    In the days of old the Czar of Georgia went out every morning on horseback to dispense justice; he slowly traversed the streets of Tbilisi. Litigants came and pleaded their cases. Armed with a cudgel, the Czar pummeled, and had pummeled, whoever was out of line or in the wrong. A Georgian recently spoke in all earnestness to my brother, who related his words to me: Well! Sir, they say that these princes very rarely erred. Thus they very sincerely regret this old street justice; and as for the new kind that the Russians have brought to them, which proceeds formally, slowly, and in writing, they cannot tolerate it, they are sick of it, and whoever would restore baculonomy to them, would deliver them an infinite delight. There are thousands of refinements in our ancient European nations, which I consider a great improvement over the Russians, at least as I know them at this moment. Direct appeal to the sovereign (or complaint) is an idea deeply rooted in their hearts, and as a credit to sovereignty, it even is more or less natural to all men. I do not believe that public sentiment could be violated on this point. It was not difficult, it seems, to find a way that would have saved everything, just by giving the complaint, once it was admitted, the force to refer the case to plenum (or elected assemblies, according to our custom).
— Joseph de Maistre, 1753 – 1821
larvatus: (rock)
A debate about Kant ended with a shooting in Rostov



Rostov-on-Don, September 16:
    Police detained a resident of Rostov, who in the course of arguing about the works of the German philosopher Immanuel Kant and their merits, shot his interlocutor in the head with a traumatic weapon, reported the Office of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Rostov-on-Don on Monday.
    According to the police, the suspect entered a kiosk to shop, striking a conversation with the victim.
    “They began to argue about the works of Immanuel Kant and their merits. A tempestuous debate turned into hand-to-hand combat, whereupon the instigator of the fight drew a traumatic handgun from his pocket and fired several shots at his opponent, then fled the scene,” — reported the statement.
    The police seized a traumatic gun “Wasp” from the detainee. The victim is currently hospitalized, his life is not in danger.
— Dimitri Buyanin, RIA News, 16 September 2013
larvatus: (rock)
C’est ainsi que le tyran asservit les sujets les uns par les autres. Il est gardé par ceux desquels il devrait se garder, s’ils n’étaient avilis : mais, comme on l’a fort bien dit pour fendre le bois, il se fait des coins de bois même. Tels sont ses archers, ses gardes, ses hallebardiers. Non que ceux-ci ne souffrent souvent eux-mêmes de son oppression ; mais ces misérables, maudits de Dieu et des hommes, se contentent d’endurer le mal, pour en faire, non à celui qui le leur fait, mais bien à ceux qui, comme eux, l’endurent et n’y peuvent rien. Et toutefois, quand je pense à ces gens-là, qui flattent bassement le tyran pour exploiter en même temps et sa tyrannie et la servitude du peuple, je suis presque aussi surpris de leur stupidité que de leur méchanceté. Car, à vrai dire, s’approcher du tyran, est-ce autre chose que s’éloigner de la liberté et, pour ainsi dire, embrasser et serrer à deux mains la servitude ? Qu’ils mettent un moment à part leur ambition, qu’ils se dégagent un peu de leur sordide avarice, et puis, qu’ils se regardent, qu’ils se considèrent en eux-mêmes : ils verront clairement que ces villageois, ces paysans qu’ils foulent aux pieds et qu’ils traitent comme des forçats ou des esclaves , ils verront, dis-je, que ceux-là, ainsi malmenés, sont plus heureux et en quelque sorte plus libres qu’eux. Le laboureur et l’artisan, pour tant asservis qu’ils soient, en sont quittes en obéissant ; mais le tyran voit ceux qui l’entourent, coquinant et mendiant sa faveur. Il ne faut pas seulement qu’ils fassent ce qu’il ordonne, mais aussi qu’ils pensent ce qu’il veut, et souvent même, pour le satisfaire, qu’ils préviennent aussi ses propres désirs. Ce n’est pas tout de lui obéir, il faut lui complaire, il faut qu’ils se rompent, se tourmentent, se tuent à traiter ses affaires et puisqu’ils ne se plaisent que de son plaisir, qu’ils sacrifient leur goût au sien, forcent leur tempérament et le dépouillement de leur naturel. Il faut qu’ils soient continuellement attentifs à ses paroles, à sa voix, à ses regards, à ses moindres gestes : que leurs yeux, leurs pieds, leurs mains soient continuellement occupés à suivre ou imiter tous ses mouvements, épier et deviner ses volontés et découvrir ses plus secrètes pensées. Est-ce là vivre heureusement ? Est-ce même vivre ? Est-il rien au monde de plus insupportable que cet état, je ne dis pas pour tout homme bien né, mais encore pour celui qui n’a que le gros bon sens, ou même figure d’homme ? Quelle condition est plus misérable que celle de vivre ainsi n’ayant rien à soi et tenant d’un autre son aise, sa liberté, son corps et sa vie !!


Jean-Léon Gérôme, Slave Auction, 1866, The Hermitage, St. Petersburg

Thus the tyrant enslaves his subjects, ones by means of others. He is protected by those from whom he would have to guard himself, were they not abased: but, as it is well said, to split wood one needs wedges of the selfsame wood. Such are his archers, his guards, his halberdiers. Not that they themselves do not often suffer at his hands, but these wretches, accursed alike by God and man, are content to endure evil in order to commit it, not against him who wrongs them, but against those who, like themselves, suffer him and cannot help it. And yet, when I think of those men who basely flatter the tyrant to profit at once from his tyranny and from the servitude of the people, I am almost as astonished by their folly as by their wickedness; for to get to the point, how can they approach a tyrant, but by withdrawing further from their liberty, and, so to speak, embracing and seizing their servitude with both hands? Let such men briefly lay aside their ambition, or slightly loosen the grip of their sordid avarice, and look at themselves as they really are; then they will realize clearly that the townspeople, the peasants whom they trample under foot and treat like convicts or slaves, they will realize, I say, that these people, mistreated though they be, are happier and in a certain sense freer than themselves. The laborer and the artisan, no matter how enslaved, discharge their obligation through obedience; but the tyrant sees men about him grovel and beg for his favor. They must not only do as he says; they must also think as he wills; and often to satisfy him they must anticipate his wishes. Their work is far from done in merely obeying him; they must also please him; they must wear themselves out, torment themselves, kill themselves with work on his behalf, and since they cannot enjoy themselves but through his pleasure, replace their preferences with his, distorting their character and corrupting their nature. They must continually pay heed to his words, to his intonation, to his glances, and to his smallest gestures: let their eyes, their feet, their hands be continually poised to follow or imitate his every motion, to espy or divine his wishes, or to seek out his innermost thoughts. Is that a happy life? Is that a life properly so called? Is there anything in the world more intolerable than that situation, not just for any man of nobility, but even for any man possessed of a crude common sense, or merely of a human face? What condition is more wretched than to live thus, with nothing to call one’s own, receiving from someone else one’s sustenance, one’s own accord, one’s body, and one’s life!!

—Étienne de La Boétie (1 November 1530 – 18 August 1563), Discours de la servitude volontaire, 1549
larvatus: (Default)
Melor Sturua reviews the movie The Last Argument of Kings [a remake of Seven Days in May] by the studio Ukrtelefilm:
    The movie shows the tycoons of the military-industrial complex, concerned about the readiness of the President of the U.S. to reach arms control agreements with the Soviet Union, organize a conspiracy against him. But the Pentagon “hawks” have no need to dive into the White House. The Reagan administration is pursuing a course that pleases the militarists.
    As a rule, American film and television, in turning to the Soviet themes, create anti-Soviet and anti-Russian, and therefore inhumane films.
Moscow News № 35, dated 31 August 1986

25 years later, anti-American rhetoric is no longer the official discourse in Russia. However, it is still in demand, as the Moscow News has determined after talking to the political scientist Aleksandr Dugin, head of the Department of Sociology of International Relations at Moscow State University.


Today, there are many more reasons to hate America, than 25 years ago. In the era of the Cold War there were two relatively comparable ideological models, the two poles—the socialist and the capitalist, two adversaries in an ideological war. Then we exchanged “pleasantries” based on our world-views, and anti-American sentiments coincided with the defense of the socialist system and the interests of the Eastern bloc.
    Since then, the Eastern Bloc fell, and the world has become unipolar. Today there exists the center, and the fringe comprises all that is not America or its direct vassals. The fringe feels the pressure of a new American empire, feels the U.S. sucking out all its resources, suppressing it, conducting a thoroughly imperialist colonial policy. And those who now oppose the U.S., comprise all of mankind, all countries facing a threat of becoming the next target of colonization and imperialist aggression by the U.S. Political scientist Samuel Hungtington proposed a formula: “The West Against the Rest”. But “the Rest” also have something to say in this situation, so that you can turn it around: “The Rest Against the West”, all the rest, except for America, against America.
    In his time, prince Trubetzkoy, founder of the Eurasian movement, wrote an important book, Europe and Mankind (meaning that Europe is opposed to mankind and mankind is opposed to Europe). And according to Trubetskoy, what unites the mankind is its aversion for European expansion. Today the center of the West has shifted across the ocean, and the one trait common to the planet of men, is the hatred of its U.S. hegemon.
    After the intervention in Libya, it is clear that Western interests and Western values ​​differ drastically. The words proclaim human rights, humanism, tolerance, democracy, and freedom;the deeds seek oil, power, occupation, and invasion. That is why the hatred of America is now not merely a common ground of “the Rest”, all the remainder of the world. This hatred is by and large becoming the force that unites the people of Europe as a part of the pro-American “West”, and even a large segment of Americans. America is hated by everyone, even by the Americans. Anti-Americanism is perhaps the main force that unites mankind. Anti-Americanism becomes a synonym for self-determination of man, the man of the fringes seeking a multipolar free world. Therefore, “Death to America” ​​should be written as a slogan on the shield of all those who want a humane world order. As long as America has not been ruined, annihilated, and crushed in its imperialist effort to impose its hegemony upon everyone, we will subsist under a constant threat of recurrence of Libyan, Iraqi, Afghani, and Serbian events. The fight against America must proceed not only with words but also with hearts and minds, and most importantly, with actions. America must be terminated. People who do not hate America today, are not people at all. They are victims of Western propaganda, biorobots who relinquish their right to freedom, independence, and dignity.

larvatus: (Default)
Bruder Hitler That Man Is My BrotherБрат Гитлер


Thomas Mann
1. Januar 1939
Foto: Carl Mydans
Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images

Ohne die entsetzlichen Opfer, welche unausgesetzt dem fatalen Seelenleben dieses Menschen fallen, ohne die umfassenden moralischen Verwüstungen, die davon ausgehen, fiele es leichter, zu gestehen, daß man sein Lebensphänomen fesselnd findet. Man kann nicht umhin, das zu tun; niemand ist der Beschäftigung mit seiner trüben Figur überhoben — das liegt in der grob effektvollen und verstärkenden (amplifizierenden) Natur der Politik, des Handwerks also, das er nun einmal gewählt hat, — man weiß, wie sehr nur eben in Ermangelung der Fähigkeit zu irgendeinem anderen. Desto schlimmer für uns, desto beschämender für das hilflose Europa von heute, das er fasziniert, worin er den Mann des Schicksals, den Allbezwinger spielen darf, und dank einer Verkettung phantastisch glücklicher — das heißt unglückseliger — Umstände, da zufällig kein Wasser fließt, das nicht seine Mühlen triebe, von einem Siege über das Nichts, über die vollendete Widerstandslosigkeit zum andern getragen wird. Were it not for the frightful sacrifices which continue to be offered up to the fatal psychology of this man; were it not for the ever-widening circle of desolation which he makes, it would be easier to admit that he presents an arresting phenomenon. Yet, hard as it is, we must admit it; nobody can help being preoccupied by the deplorable spectacle. For he has chosen — in default, as we know, of capacity to wield any other — to use politics as his tool; and politics always magnify and coarsen the effect they produce. So much the worse for us all; so much the worse for Europe today, lying helpless under his spell, where he is vouchsafed the role of the man of destiny and all-conquering hero, and where, thanks to a combination of fantastic chances — or mischances — everything is grist that comes to his mill, and he passes unopposed from one triumph to another. Если бы не ужасающие жертвы, которые непрерывно требует роковая душевная жизнь этого человека, и если бы не огромные моральные опустошения из того проистекающие, было бы легче признать, что феномен этот захватывающе увлекателен. Но ничего не поделаешь, приходится это высказать. Никто не избавлен от необходимости иметь дело с этой мрачной фигурой, ибо такова рассчитанная на грубый эффект, на преувеличение природа политики, того ремесла, которое он себе однажды выбрал, — мы знаем, в сколь большой степени из-за отсутствия способностей к чему-либо другому. Тем хуже для нас, тем постыдней для сегодняшней беспомощной Европы, которую он ослепляет, в которой ему позволено играть роль человека судьбы, покорителя всех и вся, где благодаря сцеплению фантастически счастливых, то есть несчастных, обстоятельств, — ведь все складывается так, что нет воды, которая не лилась бы на его мельницу, — его несет от одной победы, победы над ничем, над полнейшим непротивлением, к другой.
Read more... )
larvatus: (MZ)

Flaubert par Nadar, 1865, Bibliothèque Municipale de Rouen
Page 191, « Plus tard les peintres feront mieux, mais ils seront moins originaux ! » En êtes-vous sûr ? — « Ils iront plus loin. » Eh bien, alors, qu’importe le reste ! Le principal, il me semble, c’est d’aller loin. Je vous sais gré d’exalter l’individu si rabaissé de nos jours par la démocrasserie. Mais il y a quelque chose au-dessus de lui. C’est l’idée qu’il se fait de l’ensemble des choses et la manière de l’exprimer, laquelle est une Création égale, sinon supérieure, à celle de la nature. Encore une fois (et c’est là mon sujet de dissentiment entre nous) vous ne tenez pas assez compte de l’Art en soi, qui est, cependant.
Page 191, “Later on painters will do better, but they will be less original!” Are you sure of that? — “They will go further.” Well then, what matters the rest! The key, it seems to me, is to go further. I am grateful to you for exalting the individual so degraded today by democrassery. But there is something above him. That’s the conception that he forms of things in their entirety and the way of expressing it, which is a Creation equal, if not superior, to that of nature. Once again (and here is the crux of disagreement between us) you do not pay enough attention to Art in itself, which exists, nonetheless.
— Gustave Flaubert, lettre à Hippolyte Taine, 5? November 1866,
Correspondance, Vol. III, Gallimard, 1991, p. 548
larvatus: (Default)
I am about to write the world’s profoundest poem, with apologies to William James, the only one who has touched my my level of genius:
Hogamus, higamus,
God is polygynous.
Higamus, hogamus,
Christ was androgynous.
— Northrop Frye, Late Notebooks, 1982-1990
(William James, the author of Varieties of Religious Experience, was frustrated by the impression that he had forgotten numinous insights achieved while inhaling nitrous oxide. He finally resolved to write his thoughts down. A profound poem ensued: “Hogamus, higamus, / Men are polygamous. / Higamus, hogamus, / Women monogamous.”)

— Что такое женитьба с точки зрения физики процесса? — вопрошал один. — Это когда человек взял с собой в будущее поебаться, а оно по дороге протухло.
—Именно, — хихикал второй, тревожно косясь на Олега. — Женщина предлагает крайне некорректный контракт. Купить на все деньги много-много этого самого продукта, оптом на всю жизнь. Но продукт-то скоропортящийся! Даже если сначала будет хорошо, очень скоро станет плохо. А мужчине надо немного, но чтобы свежее и разное. И это, кстати, указание природы, требующей распространения генома, а не мнение какой-то там церковной общественности или климактериальных феминисток, которых в этой жизни не трахнет уже никто кроме инсульта. Короче, совсем разные бизнес-планы…— What is marriage from the standpoint of process physics? — asked one of them. — It is the case of a man stocking up on fuck fodder for his future use, and then it rots along the way.
— Exactly — the other one giggled, glancing anxiously at Oleg. — A woman offers a highly improper contract. Spend all your money on lots and lots of the said product, wholesale for a lifetime. But the product is perishable! Even if at first it is good, very soon it will turn bad. And a man needs only a little bit, but fresh and assorted. And this, by the way, is a mandate of nature, which requires dissemination of the genome, and not some sanctimonious parochial notion or conceit of menopausal feminists no longer fit to be fucked in this life by anything other than a stroke. In short, very different business plans…
— Victor Pelevin, Pineapple Soda for the Lovely Lady
larvatus: (Default)
After winning the Prix Goncourt, France’s most prestigious literary prize, for his latest novel, La carte et le territoire, Michel Houellebecq, a self-admitted believer in unlimited, eternal happiness, left the victory party thrown for him by Frédéric Beigbeder with Maria “a blond angel of Russian origin”, said to have served as a model for the character of Olga, described therein by the fictional counterpart of Beigbeder as one of the five most beautiful women in Paris. Thus the flesh-and-blood Houellebecq departs from the literary character murdered and dismembered in his prize-winning opus, repudiating his own counsel, always to anticipate coming home alone, in a taxi.
            La fête
    Le but de la fête est de nous faire oublier que nous sommes solitaires, misérables et promis à la mort. Autrement dit, de nous transformer en animaux. C’est pourquoi le primitif a un sens de la fête très développé. Une bonne flambée de plantes hallucinogènes, trois tambourins, et le tour est joué: un rien l’amuse. A l’opposé, l’Occidental moyen n’aboutit à une extase insuffisante qu’à l’issue de raves interminables dont il ressort sourd et drogué: il n’a pas du tout le sens de la fête. Profondément conscient de lui-même, radicalement étranger aux autres, terrorisé par l’idée de la mort, il est bien incapable d’accéder à une quelconque fusion. Cependant, il s’obstine. La perte de sa condition animale l’attriste, il en conçoit honte et dépit ; il aimerait être un fêtard, ou du moins passer pour tel. Il est dans une sale situation.
    QU’EST-CE QUE JE FOUS AVEC CES CONS ?
    « Lorsque deux d’entre vous seront réunis en mon nom, je serai au milieu d’eux » (Matthieu, 17, 13 [18: 20]). C’est bien là tout le problème: réunis au nom de quoi ? Qu’est qui pourrait bien, au fond, justifier d’être réunis ?
    Réunis pour s’amuser. C’est la pire des hypothèses. Dans ce genre de circonstances (boîtes de nuit, bals populaires, boums) qui n’ont visiblement rien d’amusant, une seule solution: draguer. On sort alors du registre de la fête pour rentrer dans celui d’une féroce compétition narcissique, avec ou sans option pénétration (on considère classiquement que l’homme a besoin de la pénétration pour obtenir la gratification narcissique souhaitée ; il ressent alors quelque chose d’analogue au claquement de la partie gratuite sur les anciens flippers. La femme, le plus souvent, se contente de la certitude qu’on désire la pénétrer). Si ce genre de jeux vous dégoûte, ou que vous ne vous sentez pas en mesure d’y faire bonne figure, une seule solution: partir au plus vite.
    Réunis pour lutter (manifestations étudiantes, rassemblements écologistes, talk-shows sur la banlieue). L’idée, a priori, est ingénieuse : en effet, le joyeux ciment d’une cause commune peut provoquer un effet de groupe, un sentiment d’appartenance, voire une authentique ivresse collective. Malheureusement, la psychologie des foules suit des lois invariables : on aboutit toujours à une domination des éléments les plus stupides et les plus agressifs. On se retrouve donc au milieu d’une bande de braillards bruyants, voire dangereux. Le choix est donc le même que dans la boîte de nuit : partir avant que ça cogne, ou draguer (dans un contexte ici plus favorable : la présence de convictions communes, les sentiments divers provoqués par le déroulement de la protestation ont pu légèrement ébranler la carapace narcissique).
    Réunis pour baiser (boîtes à partouzes, orgies privées, certains groupes New Age). Une des formules les plus simples et les plus anciennes : réunir l’humanité sur ce qu’elle a, en effet, de plus commun. Des actes sexuels ont lieu, même si le plaisir n’est pas toujours au rendez-vous. C’est déjà ça ; mais c’est à peu près tout.
    Réunis pour célébrer (messes, pèlerinages). La religion propose une formule tout à fait originale : nier audacieusement la séparation et la mort en affirmant que, contrairement aux apparences, nous baignons dans l’amour divin tout en nous dirigeant vers une éternité bienheureuse. Une cérémonie religieuse dont les participants auraient la foi offrirait donc l’exemple unique d’une fête réussie. Certains participants agnostiques peuvent même, durant le temps da la cérémonie, se sentir gagnés par un sentiment de croyance ; mais ils risquent ensuite une descente pénible (un peu comme pour le sexe, mais pire). Une solution : être touché par la grâce.
    Le pèlerinage, combinant des avantages de la manifestation étudiante et ceux du voyage Nouvelles Frontières, le tout dans une ambiance de spiritualité aggravée par la fatigue, offre en outre des conditions idéales pour la drague, qui en devient presque involontaire, voire sincère. Hypothèse haute en sortie de pèlerinage : mariage + conversion. A l’opposé, la descente peut être terrible. Prévoir d’enchaîner sur un séjour UCPA « sports de glisse », qu’il sera toujours temps d’annuler (renseignez-vous au préalable sur les conditions d’annulation).
    LA FÊTE SANS LARMES.
    En réalité, il suffit d’avoir prévu de s’amuser pour être certain de s’emmerder. L’idéal serait donc de renoncer totalement aux fêtes. Malheureusement, le fêtard est un personnage si respecté que cette renonciation entraîne une dégradation forte de l’image sociale. Les quelques conseils suivants devraient permettre d’éviter le pire (rester seul jusqu’au bout, dans un état d’ennui évoluant vers le désespoir, avec l’impression erronée que les autres s’amusent).
  • Bien prendre conscience au préalable que la fête sera forcément ratée. Visualiser des exemples d’échecs antérieurs. Il ne s’agit pas pour autant d’adopter une attitude cynique et blasée. Au contraire, l’acceptation humble et souriante du désastre commun permet d’aboutir à ce succès : transformer une fête ratée en un moment d’agréable banalité.
  • Toujours prévoir qu’on rentrera seul, et en taxi.
  • Avant la fête : boire. L’alcool à doses modérées produit un effet sociabilisant et euphorisant qui reste sans réelle concurrence.
  • Pendant la fête : boire, mais diminuer les doses (le cocktail alcool + érotisme ambiant conduit rapidement à la violence, au suicide et au meurtre). Il est plus ingénieux de prendre ½ Lexomil au moment opportun. L’alcool multipliant l’effet des tranquillisants, on observera un assoupissement rapide : c’est le moment d’appeler un taxi. Une bonne fête est une fête brève.
  • Après la fête : téléphoner pour remercier. Attendre paisiblement la fête suivante (respecter un intervalle d’un mois, qui pourra descendre à une semaine en période de vacances).
    Enfin, une perspective consolante : l’âge aidant, l’obligation de fête diminue, le penchant à la solitude augmente ; la vie réelle reprend le dessus.

Michel Houellebecq, Rester vivant, Flammarion, 1997, pp. 70-73      
            Celebration
    The aim of celebration is to make us forget that we are lonely, miserable, and promised to death. In other words, to transform us into animals. That is why the savage has a very well developed sense of celebration. A sound puff of hallucinogenic plants, three tambourines, and he is all done: amused by a trifle. By contrast, the average Westerner achieves a meager ecstasy only in the wake of endless raves, which leave him stupefied and intoxicated: he has no sense of celebration whatsoever. Deeply conscious of himself, radically foreign to others, terrified by the idea of death, he is unable to achieve any synthesis. However, he persists. The loss of his animal condition saddens him; it consigns him to shame and vexation; he would be a celebrator, or at least pass for such. He is in a lousy situation.
    WHAT AM I DOING WITH THESE IDIOTS?
    “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew, 17:13 [18:20]). This is indeed the entire problem: gathered together in the name of what? What could suffice, in the final analysis, to justify such gatherings?
    Gathered together for fun. This is the worst case scenario. In such circumstances (night clubs, village dances, parties) which obviously fail to foment fun, there is only one solution: a pickup. One then abandons the mindset of celebration to return to that of a fierce narcissistic competition, with or without an option of penetration (typically considering that man needs penetration to achieve the desired narcissistic gratification, whereupon he feels something analogous to the chimes of the bonus game on old pinball machines. The woman, most often, satisfies herself with the certainty of being desired as the object of penetration). If this kind of game turns you off, or you do not feel up to winning it, there remains only one solution: to leave at the earliest opportunity.
    Gathered together to fight (student protests, environmentalist rallies, town hall meetings). At first blush, the idea is ingenious: in fact, the happy joining in a common cause can produce a group effect, a sense of belonging, even a genuine collective drunkenness. Unfortunately, the psychology of crowds follows rigid laws: it always leads to domination of the most stupid and most aggressive. So we end up in the midst of a rowdy, even dangerous band of blowhards. The choice is therefore the same as in the nightclub: leaving before it all busts out, or trolling for a pickup (here in a more favorable context: the presence of common convictions, the range of feelings brought forth in the course of the protest being liable to slightly displace the narcissistic shell).
    Gathered together to fuck (sex clubs, private orgies, certain New Age groups). One of the simplest and oldest formulas: uniting mankind in its most common aspect. Sexual acts take place, even if pleasure is not always present. That’s already something, but that’s about all there is to it.
    Gathered together to celebrate (masses, pilgrimages). Religion offers a completely original formula: boldly deny the separation and death by affirming that, contrary to appearances, we are immersed in divine love, while advancing towards a blissful eternity. A religious ceremony in which participants have faith would therefore offer a unique example of a successful celebration. Some agnostic participants may even, during the ceremony, feel overwhelmed by a sense belief; but they risk a painful descent (a bit like sex, but worse). One solution: to be touched by grace.
    The pilgrimage, combining the benefits of student demonstration with those of packaged holidays by Nouvelles Frontieres, all in an atmosphere of spirituality aggravated by fatigue, also provides ideal conditions to troll for a pickup, which becomes almost involuntary, even sincere. The charitable assumption at the end of the pilgrimage: marriage + conversion. Otherwise, the descent can be terrible. Plan to follow up on a water-sporting vacation by UCPA, which could be cancelled at the last minute (ask in advance about the cancellation policy).
    CELEBRATE WITHOUT TEARS.
    In fact, just planning to have fun is enough to ensure getting bored. The ideal would therefore be to renounce all celebrations. Unfortunately, the party animal is a figure so well respected that this renunciation would result in a severe weakening of the social image. The following tips should help to avoid the worst (staying alone until the end, in a state of boredom evolving into despair, with the mistaken impression that the others are having fun).
  • Be well aware beforehand that the party will necessarily fail. Visualize the examples of past failures. This does not mean to adopt a cynical and jaded attitude. On the contrary, humble and cheerful acceptance of the common disaster can lead to success: transforming a failed party into a pleasant occasion of banality.
  • Always anticipate coming home alone, in a taxi.
  • Before the party: drink. Alcohol in moderate doses produces a socializing and euphoric effect which has no real competition.
  • During the party: drink, but lower the doses (the mixture of alcohol with ambient eroticism quickly leads to violence, suicide, and murder). It is more thoughtful to take ½ of a Valium at the right time. Alcohol compounding the effect of tranquilizers will make you sleepy; that’s the time to call a taxi. A good party is a short party.
  • After the party: call to offer your thanks. Wait quietly for the next occasion (an interval of one month, which can shorten to a week during vacations).
    Finally, a consoling perspective: with the help of aging, the obligation to celebrate diminishes; the penchant for solitude increases; real life takes over.

—translated by MZ      

Michel Houellebecq / Vincent Ferrané
Our fondest felicitations and many happy returns, Monsieur Michel. May every dissipated misanthrope connect with his proper match.

Crossposted to [info]larvatus and [info]mhouellebecq.
larvatus: (Default)
        Les Tentations, ou Éros, Plutus et la Gloire         The Temptations: or, Eros, Plutus, and Glory         Искушения, или Эрос, Плутос и Слава
    Deux superbes Satans et une Diablesse, non moins extraordinaire, ont la nuit dernière monté l’escalier mystérieux par où l’Enfer donne assaut à la faiblesse de l’homme qui dort, et communique en secret avec lui. Et ils sont venus se poser glorieusement devant moi, debout comme sur une estrade. Une splendeur sulfureuse émanait de ces trois personnages, qui se détachaient ainsi du fond opaque de la nuit. Ils avaient l’air si fier et si plein de domination, que je les pris d’abord tous les trois pour de vrais Dieux.
    Le visage du premier Satan était d’un sexe ambigu, et il avait aussi, dans les lignes de son corps, la mollesse des anciens Bacchus. Ses beaux yeux languissants, d’une couleur ténébreuse et indécise, ressemblaient à des violettes chargées encore des lourds pleurs de l’orage, et ses lèvres entr’ouvertes à des cassolettes chaudes, d’où s’exhalait la bonne odeur d’une parfumerie; et à chaque fois qu’il soupirait, des insectes musqués s’illuminaient, en voletant, aux ardeurs de son souffle.
    Autour de sa tunique de pourpre était roulé, en manière de ceinture, un serpent chatoyant qui, la tête relevée, tournait langoureusement vers lui ses yeux de braise. A cette ceinture vivante étaient suspendus, alternant avec des fioles pleines de liqueurs sinistres, de brillants couteaux et des instruments de chirurgie. Dans sa main droite il tenait une autre fiole dont le contenu était d’un rouge lumineux, et qui portait pour étiquette ces mots bizarres: « Buvez, ceci est mon sang, un parfait cordial » ; dans la gauche, un violon qui lui servait sans doute à chanter ses plaisirs et ses douleurs, et à répandre la contagion de sa folie dans les nuits de sabbat.
    A ses chevilles délicates traînaient quelques anneaux d’une chaîne d’or rompue, et quand la gêne qui en résultait le forçait à baisser les yeux vers la terre, il contemplait vaniteusement les ongles de ses pieds, brillants et polis comme des pierres bien travaillées.
    Il me regarda avec ses yeux inconsolablement navrés, d’où s’écoulait une insidieuse ivresse, et il me dit d’une voix chantante : « Si tu veux, si tu veux, je te ferai le seigneur des âmes, et tu seras le maître de la matière vivante, plus encore que le sculpteur peut l’être de l’argile ; et tu connaîtras le plaisir, sans cesse renaissant, de sortir de toi-même pour t’oublier dans autrui, et d’attirer les autres âmes jusqu’à les confondre avec la tienne. »
    Et je lui répondis : « Grand merci ! je n’ai que faire de cette pacotille d’êtres qui, sans doute, ne valent pas mieux que mon pauvre moi. Bien que j’aie quelque honte à me souvenir, je ne veux rien oublier; et quand même je ne te connaîtrais pas, vieux monstre, ta mystérieuse coutellerie, tes fioles équivoques, les chaînes dont tes pieds sont empêtrés, sont des symboles qui expliquent assez clairement les inconvénients de ton amitié. Garde tes présents. »
    Le second Satan n’avait ni cet air à la fois tragique et souriant, ni ces belles manières insinuantes, ni cette beauté délicate et parfumée. C’était un homme vaste, à gros visage sans yeux, dont la lourde bedaine surplombait les cuisses, et dont toute la peau était dorée et illustrée, comme d’un tatouage, d’une foule de petites figures mouvantes représentant les formes nombreuses de la misère universelle. Il y avait de petits hommes efflanqués qui se suspendaient volontairement à un clou; il y avait de petits gnomes difformes, maigres, dont les yeux suppliants réclamaient l’aumône mieux encore que leurs mains tremblantes; et puis de vieilles mères portant des avortons accrochés à leurs mamelles exténuées. Il y en avait encore bien d’autres.
    Le gros Satan tapait avec son poing sur son immense ventre, d’où sortait alors un long et retentissant cliquetis de métal, qui se terminait en un vague gémissement fait de nombreuses voix humaines. Et il riait, en montrant impudemment ses dents gâtées, d’un énorme rire imbécile, comme certains hommes de tous les pays quand ils ont trop bien dîné.
    Et celui-là me dit: « Je puis te donner ce qui obtient tout, ce qui vaut tout, ce qui remplace tout ! » Et il tapa sur son ventre monstrueux, dont l’écho sonore fit le commentaire de sa grossière parole.
    Je me détournai avec dégoût, et je répondis: « Je n’ai besoin, pour ma jouissance, de la misère de personne ; et je ne veux pas d’une richesse attristée, comme un papier de tenture, de tous les malheurs représentés sur ta peau. »
    Quant à la Diablesse, je mentirais si je n’avouais pas qu’à première vue je lui trouvai un bizarre charme. Pour définir ce charme, je ne saurais le comparer à rien de mieux qu’à celui des très-belles femmes sur le retour, qui cependant ne vieillissent plus, et dont la beauté garde la magie pénétrante des ruines. Elle avait l’air à la fois impérieux et dégingandé, et ses yeux, quoique battus, contenaient une force fascinatrice. Ce qui me frappa le plus, ce fut le mystère de sa voix, dans laquelle je retrouvais le souvenir des contralti les plus délicieux et aussi un peu de l’enrouement des gosiers incessamment lavés par l’eau-de-vie.
    « Veux-tu connaître ma puissance ? » dit la fausse déesse avec sa voix charmante et paradoxale. « Écoute. »
    Et elle emboucha alors une gigantesque trompette, enrubannée, comme un mirliton, des titres de tous les journaux de l’univers, et à travers cette trompette elle cria mon nom, qui roula ainsi à travers l’espace avec le bruit de cent mille tonnerres, et me revint répercuté par l’écho de la plus lointaine planète.
    « Diable ! » fis-je, à moitié subjugué, « voilà qui est précieux ! » Mais en examinant plus attentivement la séduisante virago, il me sembla vaguement que je la reconnaissais pour l’avoir vue trinquant avec quelques drôles de ma connaissance ; et le son rauque du cuivre apporta à mes oreilles je ne sais quel souvenir d’une trompette prostituée.
    Aussi je répondis, avec tout mon dédain: « Va-t’en ! Je ne suis pas fait pour épouser la maîtresse de certains que je ne veux pas nommer. »
    Certes, d’une si courageuse abnégation j’avais le droit d’être fier. Mais malheureusement je me réveillai, et toute ma force m’abandonna. « En vérité, me dis-je, il fallait que je fusse bien lourdement assoupi pour montrer de tels scrupules. Ah ! s’ils pouvaient revenir pendant que je suis éveillé, je ne ferais pas tant le délicat ! »
    Et je les invoquai à haute voix, les suppliant de me pardonner, leur offrant de me déshonorer aussi souvent qu’il le faudrait pour mériter leurs faveurs; mais je les avais sans doute fortement offensés, car ils ne sont jamais revenus.
    Two superb Satans and a Deviless no less extraordinary ascended last night the mysterious stairway by which Hell assails the frailty of sleeping man, and converses with him covertly. And they poses gloriously before me, as though having mounted a stage. A sulphurous splendor emanated from these three beings who thus disengaged themselves from the opaque heart of the night. They bore with them a presence so proud and so full of mastery, that at first I took all three of them for true Gods.
    The first Satan had a countenance of doubtful sex, and the softness of ancient Bacchants in the lines of his body. His beautiful languorous eyes, of a shadowy and indefinite color, were like violets still laden with the heavy tears of the storm; and his slightly parted lips were like heated censers, from whence exhaled the sweet odor of many perfumes; and each time he breathed, exotic insects drew, as they fluttered, strength from the ardours of his breath.
    Twined about his tunic of purple stuff, in the manner of a cincture, was an iridescent Serpent with lifted head and eyes like embers turned sleepily towards him. Phials full of sinister fluids, alternating with shining knives and instruments of surgery, hung from this living girdle. He held in his right hand a flagon containing a luminous red fluid, and inscribed with a legend in these singular words: “Drink of this my blood: a perfect restorative”; and in his left hand held a violin that without doubt served to sing his pleasures and pains, and to spread abroad the contagion of his folly upon the nights of the Sabbath.
    From rings upon his delicate ankles trailed a broken chain of gold, and when the burden of this caused him to bend his eyes towards the earth, he would contemplate with vanity the nails of his feet, as brilliant and polished as well-wrought jewels.
    He looked at me with eyes inconsolably heartbroken and giving forth an insidious intoxication, and cried in a chanting voice: “If thou wilt, if thou wilt, I will make thee an overlord of souls; thou shalt be master of living matter more perfectly than the sculptor is master of his clay; thou shalt taste the pleasure, reborn without end, of obliterating thyself in the self of another, and of luring other souls to lose themselves in thine.”
    But I replied to him: “I thank thee. I only gain from this venture, then, beings of no more worth than my poor self? Though remembrance brings me shame indeed, I would forget nothing; and even before I recognized thee, thou ancient monster, thy mysterious cutlery, thy equivocal phials, and the chain that imprisons thy feet, were symbols showing clearly enough the inconvenience of thy friendship. Keep thy gifts.”
    The second Satan had neither the air at once tragical and smiling, the lovely insinuating ways, nor the delicate and scented beauty of the first. A gigantic man, with a coarse, eyeless face, his heavy paunch overhung his hips and was gilded and pictured, like a tattooing, with a crowd of little moving figures which represented the unnumbered forms of universal misery. There were little sinew-shrunken men who hung themselves willingly from nails; there were meager gnomes, deformed and undersized, whose beseeching eyes solicited alms even more eloquently than their trembling hands; there were old mothers who nursed clinging abortuses at their drooping breasts. And many others, even more surprising.
    This heavy Satan beat with his fist upon his immense belly, from whence came a loud and resounding metallic clangour, which died away in a sighing made by many human voices. And he smiled unrestrainedly, showing his broken teeth—the imbecile smile of a man who has dined too freely. Then the creature said to me:
“I can give thee that which gets all, which is worth all, which takes the place of all.” And he tapped his monstrous paunch, whence came a sonorous echo as the commentary to his obscene speech. I turned away with disgust and replied: “I need no man’s misery to bring me happiness; nor will I have the sad wealth of all the misfortunes pictured upon thy skin as upon a tapestry.”
    As for the She-devil, I should lie if I denied that at first I found in her a certain strange charm, which to define I can but compare to the charm of certain beautiful women past their first youth, who yet seem to age no more, whose beauty keeps something of the penetrating magic of ruins. She had an air at once imperious and sordid, and her eyes, though heavy, held a certain power of fascination. I was struck most by her voice, wherein I found the remembrance of the most delicious contralti, as well as a little of the hoarseness of a throat continually laved with brandy.
    “Wouldst thou know my power?” said the charming and paradoxical voice of the false goddess. “Then listen.” And she put to her mouth a gigantic trumpet, enribboned, like a mirliton, with the titles of all the newspapers in the world; and through this trumpet she cried my name so that it rolled through, space with the sound of a hundred thousand thunders, and came re-echoing back to me from the farthest planet.
    “Devil!” cried I, half tempted, that at least is worth something.” But it vaguely struck me, upon examining the seductive virago more attentively, that I had seen her clinking glasses with certain drolls of my acquaintance, and her blare of brass carried to my ears I know not what memory of a fanfare prostituted.
    So I replied, with all disdain: “Get thee hence! I know better than wed the light o’ love of them that 1 will not name.”
    Truly, I had the right to be proud of a so courageous renunciation. But unfortunately I awoke, and all my courage left me. “ In truth,” I said, “I must have been very deeply asleep indeed to have had such scruples. Ah, if they would but return while I am awake, I would not be so delicate.”
    So I invoked the three in a loud voice, offering to dishonour myself as often as necessary to obtain their favours; but I had without doubt too deeply offended them, for they have never returned.
    Два великолепных Дьявола и не менее замечательная Дьяволица поднялись прошлой ночью по той таинственной лестнице, через которую Ад атакует немощь спящего человека, и вступает с ним в тайные сношения. И вот они возвысились передо мной во всем блеске, словно бы выйдя на подмостки. Серное сияние исходило из этих трёх личностей, отделяя их от смутной глубины ночи. В их облике было столько гордости и господства, что поначалу я принял всех трёх за настоящих богов.
    Лицо первого дьявола было и мужским и женским, и во всех линиях его тела проявлялась изнеженность античных Бахусов. Его прекрасные томные глаза мрачного и неясного цвета, походили на фиалки всё ещё наполненные тяжелыми слезами грозы, а его полуоткрытые губы, на горячие курильницы, изливающие благовонный дым; и при каждом его вздохе мускусные мошки кружились рядом, вспыхивая от его горячего дыхания.
     Вокруг его пурпурной туники обвилась, подобно поясу, сверкающая змея, которая, приподнимая голову, томно обращала к нему свои искрящиеся глаза. К этому живому поясу были подвешены, чередуясь с флаконами наполненными роковыми зельями, блистающие кинжалы и хирургические инструменты. В правой руке он держал ещё один сосуд, наполненный красной светящейся жидкостью, на котором виднелась странная надпись: «Вкусите, сие есть кровь моя, что полностью укрепит ваши силы»; а в левой—скрипку, которая, без сомнения, служила ему, дабы воспевать свои радости и горести и распространять заразу безумия на полуночных шабашах.
    От его изящных лодыжкек тащились обрывки золотой цепи, и каждый раз, когда вызываемое ими стеснение принуждало его опускать глаза, он бросал тщеславные взгляды на свои ногти, отполированные и сверкающие, словно тщательно отделанные камни.
    Он посмотрел на меня полными безутешной скорби глазами, откуда исходил коварный дурман, и сказал мне певучим голосом: «Стоит тебе захотеть, стоит захотеть, и я сделаю тебя владыкою душ, и ты станешь повелителем живой материи, более властным, чем скульптор способен властвовать над глиной; и ты познаешь непрестанно возрождающееся наслаждение выходить за пределы самого себя, чтобы забыться в другом, и притягивать другие души, вплоть до их смешения с твоею собственной».
    И я отвечал ему: «Благодарю покорно! мне нечего делать с этим хламом чужих существ, которые, без сомнения, не стоят более, чем моя бедная душа. Хотя я и стыжусь некоторых своих воспоминаний, я не хочу ничего забывать; и даже если бы я не знал тебя, древнее чудовище, то твои странные ножи, твои двусмысленные зелья, цепи стесняющие твои ноги, обозначают достаточно ясно те неудобства, что причиняет твоя дружба. Оставь свои дары при себе».
    Второй дьявол не обладал ни подобной наружностью, одновременно трагической и ласковой, ни замечательно вкрадчивыми повадками, ни этой утонченной и благоухающей красотой. Это был огромный мужчина с широким безглазым лицом, чьё тяжелое брюхо нависало над бёдрами, и чья кожа была сплошь позолочена и испещрена, словно татуировками, сборищем крошечных движущихся фигурок, представляющих собой всевозможные разновидности вселенского несчастья. Тут были высохшие человечки, добровольно вешавшиесь на гвозде; тощие уродливые карлики, чьи умоляющие глаза просили милостыни ещё настойчивее, чем дрожащие руки; состарившиеся матери, державшие на руках недоносков, льнувших к их истощённым грудям. И было еще великое множество других.
    Тучный дьявол бил кулаком своё непомерное брюхо, и каждый раз оттуда доносилось бряцанье металла, заканчивающееся слабым стоном, издавашимся множеством человеческих голосов. И он хохотал, бесстыдно обнажая свои гнилые зубы, громким идиотским хохотом, как это делают во всех странах света некоторые люди после чересчур плотного обеда.
    И он сказал мне: «Я могу дать тебе то, что получает всё, что стоит всего, что заменяет всё». И он похлопал по своей чудовищной утробе, ответившей на его грубые слова гулким эхом.
    Я отвернулся от него с отвращением и ответил: «Для моего удовольствия не нужно чужого несчастья; и я не хочу богатства опечаленного всеми бедами отпечатанными на твоей коже, как на обоях».
    Что же до Дьяволицы, то я солгал бы, не сознавшись, что на первый взгляд я нашел в ней некое странное очарование. Чтобы определить это очарование, я не мог бы найти лучшего сравнения, чем с очарованием, присущим очень красивым зрелым женщинам, которые словно бы перестали стареть, и чья красота хранит пронизывающее обаяние руин. У неё был вид одновременно повелительный и нескладный, а ее глаза, даже окружённые синевой, содержали чарующую силу. Но сильнее всего поразил меня её таинственный голос, в котором я нашёл ноты нежнейших контральто заодно с хрипотцой глоток, регулярно промываемых водкой.
     «Хочешь узнать моё могущество?»—спросила лжебогиня чарующим и парадоксальным голосом. «Слушай».
    И она приложила к губам гигантскую трубу, обвутую лентами, словно сельская дудочка, с заголовками всех газет, какие только есть в мире, и сквозь эту трубу прокричала мое имя, которое прокатилось по всей вселенной с грохотом, подобным сотне тысяч громовых раскатов, и вернулось ко мне от самых дальних планет, отраженное эхом.
«Чёрт подери!»—воскликнул я, уже наполовину сдавшись.—«Вот это и вправду стоящее дело!» Но пока я разглядывал повнимательнее эту мужеподобную искусительницу, мне смутно припомнилось, что как-то раз видел её в пьяной компании известных пройдох; и её медное рычание напомнило мне некую продажную трубы.
    И я ответил со всем презрением, на какое был способен: «Изыди! Я не собираюсь жениться на любовнице неких лиц, которых даже не взялся бы назвать».
    Разумеется, после такого мужественного самоотречения я имел полное право гордиться собой. Но тут, к несчастью, я пробудился, и вся моя сила оставила меня. «Воистину»,—сказал я себе,—«я должен был заснуть слишком крепко, чтобы проявить столько щепетильности. Ах! если бы они могли вернуться сейчас, когда я бодрствую, я не был бы таким разборчивым!»
    И я громко взывал к ним, умоляя простить меня, предлагая им унижать меня всё чаще, пока я заново не удостоюсь их милости; но, должно быть, я жестоко оскорбил их, поскольку они никогда не вернулись.
    
    
    —Charles Baudelaire, Œuvres Complètes, V. I, Gallimard, 1975, pp. 307-310     —translated by MZ     —перевёл МЗ

Jean Mohler, Éros, Plutus et la Gloire, 1946


Crossposted to [info]larvatus and [info]againstnature.
larvatus: (Default)
Philipp Bakhtin, editor in chief of Russian Esquire, distinguished himself this month mainly by putting up and taking down a nine-story banner featuring the cover of its April issue posing the question: “Why do ballerinas and gays join United Russia?” His magazine interviewed nine professionally creative and sexually venturesome Russians, eliciting their reasons for joining the ranks of Putin’s dominant political party. These reasons included the following:
  • a wish to mimic the makeup of Italian parliament that included a prostitute defending the interests of her class;
  • support for the slogan issued by party leadership: “Parliament is no place for discussions”;
  • belief in the importance of national unity and faith in the only party capable of sustaining it;
  • a yearning for an ideology defining and advancing the national mission of Russia;
  • disenchantment with the principle that some things are not to be bought or sold;
  • lack of alternative political leaders worthy of enthusiastic support;
  • a craving for shelter in the breast of hegemonic officialdom; and
  • enthusiasm for state propaganda of healthy lifestyles.
Bakhtin’s less notable but equally provocative contribution was the following editorial extolling modern Russian man spermatozoa coursing through the cunts of American deer mice as the summit of creation:
Оказывается, шимпанзе не бросают сирот. Немецкие ученые в течение 27 лет пристально наблюдали 36 маленьких, оставшихся без родителей шимпанзе, 18 из которых были взяты под опеку другими взрослыми шимпанзе, и 10 из этих 18—выжили. Приемные родители раскалывали для них орехи, защищали в драках и спасали от леопардов, причем нередко это делали самцы, которые обычно не интересуются воспитанием потомства. То есть в течение месяцев и даже лет волосатые шимпанзе делали что-то, что было либо обременительно, либо опасно для них лично, но полезно для вида в целом.
    Мало того, оказывается, сперматозоиды американских хомячков Peromyscus maniculatus способны объединяться в стайки, чтобы обгонять конкурентов из чужих семенников—примерно так, как это делают во время эстафеты конькобежцы в шорт-треке, подталкивая друг друга в спину. Легкомысленные самки этих Peromyscus maniculatus (оленьих хомячков) спариваются сразу с несколькими партнерами, но сперматозоиды умеют отличать своих от чужих, объединяются с родственниками и вместе несутся к финишу. И тем самым демонстрируют еще один пример альтруистического поведения, поскольку оплодотворить яйцеклетку сможет только один конькобежец.
    Почему шимпанзе и сперматозоиды делают это? Потому что природа таинственным образом научила их жертвовать личными интересами ради интересов своего вида. Но вот что удивительно: сперматозоиды американских хомячков природа наделила этим даром, а (возьмем сегодняшний пример) сотрудников Первого батальона Первого спецполка ГИБДД—нет. 5 марта эти представители тупиковой ветви эволюции среди ночи перекрыли МКАД автомобилями мирно ехавших по своим делам граждан (в том числе беременных), чтобы остановить машину с преступниками (укравшими сумочку), которые успешно протаранили кордон и уехали. И это просто первая попавшаяся на глаза новость—завтра будет еще триста таких же.
    Почему эти монады в ушанках так поступили? Потому что когда-то давно природа таинственным образом наделила их самосознанием, которое, как теперь стало ясно, плохо уживается с альтруистическим поведением. Разглядевший самого себя шимпанзе поумнел, изобрел колесо, компас, паровой двигатель, википедию и съедобные трусы со вкусом малины, но почти начисто утратил чувство ответственности за любых сородичей, кроме ближайшей родни и сокурсников по юрфаку ЛГУ (например). Теперь, чтобы выжить, этот вид животных должен начать экономить свет и воду, отказаться от использования полиэтиленовых пакетов, перестать покупать и выбрасывать лишнюю еду, избавиться от бензиновых двигателей, договориться о квотах на выброс парниковых газов, демонтировать ядерное оружие, остановить вырубку лесов и уничтожение диких животных, потратить миллиарды на технологии безопасной утилизации всего на свете и разобрать по семьям 600 тысяч (только в России) сирот. Но, к сожалению, польза от этого будет общественная, да и то в будущем, а каждому отдельно взятому сегодняшнему человеку окончательно достанутся исключительно хлопоты.
    На всякий случай: общество, способное объединиться и заботиться об интересах всех своих в целом нынешних и будущих членов, называется гражданское общество (если не слышали, поинтересуйтесь в интернетах). Но, согласно последним сведениям ученых, самое гражданское из всех существующих обществ расположено в пизде у американских оленьих хомячков.
—Филипп Бахтин, «Творению-венец», Esquire, April 2010
It turns out that chimps do not abandon orphans. German scientists over the past 27 years have observed 36 young, orphaned chimpanzees, 18 of which were adopted by other adult chimpanzees, and these 18 survived. Adoptive parents cracked nuts for them, defended them in fights, and saved them from leopards, and often all that was done by males, who usually lack interest in raising offspring. That is, for months and even years hairy chimps undertook something that was either burdensome or dangerous for them individually, but useful for the species as a whole.
    Moreover, it turns out that spermatozoa of American rodents Peromyscus maniculatus can associate in flocks, in order to overtake competition from foreign sperm, more or less the way it is done by relay skaters in a short track, pushing each other in the back. Frivolous females of Peromyscus maniculatus (deer mice) mate with several partners, but the spermatozoa are able to distinguish their own kind from others, join forces with their kin, and race as a pack to the finish. And thus they demonstrate yet another example of altruistic behavior, for only one skater can fertilize the egg.
    Why do chimpanzees and spermatozoa do it? Because nature in her mysterious way has taught them to sacrifice personal interests for the interests of their kind. But here is the surprising part: nature has bestowed this gift upon the spermatozoa of American deer mice, but (to take the current example) not upon the members of the First Battalion of the First Special Regiment of the State traffic police. On March 5, these representatives of an evolutionary dead end branch blocked Moscow Ring Road in the dead of the night with the vehicles of citizens peacefully going about their business (including pregnant women), in order to stop the car full of criminals (purse-snatchers), who successfully rammed the cordon and drove away. And this is just the first news item to come along—tomorrow there will be three hundred more of the same.
    Why did these fur-hatted monads do it? Because once upon a time nature mysteriously bestowed upon them self-awareness, which, as is now clear, has a hard time coexisting with altruistic behavior. Having scrutinized himself, the chimp wisened up, invented the wheel, the compass, the steam engine, Wikipedia, and edible raspberry-flavored panties, while almost completely losing its sense of responsibility for his fellow tribesmen, except the nearest kinfolk and classmates from the Law School of Leningrad State University (to take one example). Now, in order to survive, this species must start saving water and power, put an end to plastic bags, stop buying and wasting extra food, get rid of the gasoline engine, agree on quotas for greenhouse gases, dismantle nuclear weapons, stop deforestation and destruction of wildlife, spend billions on technology for safe disposal of everything, and find family homes for 600 thousand orphans (in Russia alone). Unfortunately, the benefits of all that will accrue only to the society at large, and only in the future, yielding nothing but trouble for every single present-day individual.
    Just in case: a society that can unite and promote the interests of all its current and future members, is called a civil society (if you haven’t heard of it, ask the internets). But, according to the latest scientific findings, the most civil of all existing societies is located in the cunts of American deer mice.
—translated by MZ

Peromyscus maniculatus
It is heartening to have glossy Russian media attend to the humble Peromyscus maniculatus, the deer mouse that along with congeneric species counts as the most common native North American mammal, ranging from Alaska to Central America. One of the latest scientific findings in its regard is the account of the cooperative behaviour of spermatozoa given by Heidi S. Fisher and Hopi E. Hoekstra in a letter to Nature 463, 801-803 (11 February 2010), “Competition Drives Cooperation Among Closely Related Sperm of Deer Mice”. Fisher and Hoekstra begin by observing that sperm of Peromyscus polionotus, a monogamous species ipso facto lacking sperm competition, indiscriminately groups with unrelated conspecific sperm. Then they show that by contrast, sperm of the highly promiscuous Peromyscus maniculatus are significantly more likely to aggregate with those obtained from the same male than with sperm from an unrelated conspecific males and even with sperm from siblings. They conclude that sperm from promiscuous deer mice discriminate among relatives and thereby cooperate with the most closely related sperm, as a result of an evolutionary adaptation likely to have been driven by sperm competition.

What does all that have to do with Moscow traffic cops? Not so much. The practice of police commanding assistance from the public, epitomized by Popeye Doyle commandeering a civilian’s 1971 Pontiac LeMans to chase the French Connection, is both legal and widespread in this most civil of all possible societies. The novel twist contributed by the makers of “live barricades” deployed against fleeing criminals on Moscow Ring Road, is compelling civilians to put themselves along with their property in the way of rapidly approaching harm. The Connecticut Supreme Court addressed this issue in State v. Floyd, 217 Conn. 73, 584 A.2d 1157 (1991). The trial judge in Floyd, Jon C. Blue, elaborates upon this case in “High Noon Revisited: Commands of Assistance by Peace Officers in the Age of the Fourth Amendment”, May, 1992, 101 Yale Law Journal 1475, by posing an analogy between the command of assistance and the notorious British practice of impressment, forcible induction of men into military and especially naval service. He argues that subjecting ordinary citizens to summary impressment into hazardous police duty is inconsistent with our basic notions of constitutional liberty, pointing out that the ruling in the Floyd case construed Connecticut’s commanding assistance statute as authorizing such commands “only when such assistance is both demonstrably necessary and reasonable under all the circumstances”. This provision grafted a reasonable appearance upon a practice that by its nature requires split-second decisions involving the safety of the person, where the person commanded will have no ready means of identifying a deficient command. Judge Blue points out that, given a widespread concern that Fourth Amendment law is too confusing to be understood by policemen on the beat, a generalized rule of reasonableness reduces the law to a morass where no one, policeman or citizen, can determine his rights and responsibilities in advance. As Anthony Amsterdam has observed in “Perspectives on the Fourth Amendment”, 58 Minnesota Law Review 49, 394 (1974):
If there are no fairly clear rules telling the policeman what he may and may not do, courts are seldom going to say that what he did was unreasonable. The ultimate conclusion is that “the people would be ‘secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects,’ only in the discretion of the police.”
Judge Blue concludes that it would be far better to have some hard and fast rules that citizens of this country could intelligently follow: “Given the realities of modern life, it behooves us to decree that commands of assistance that subject the person commanded to the possibility of personal danger are inconsistent with the Fourth Amendment and the commands of due process.”

It is undisputed that on 5 March 2010 Moscow traffic police commanded and obtained assistance that subjected the persons commanded to the possibility of personal danger. But it is unclear whether or not that assistance was both demonstrably necessary and reasonable under all the circumstances. While the formation of a live barricade may appear to Western legal analysts as an excessive response to an incident of purse-snatching, judging it to be so would sell short the importance of purses to the Russian soul. The unisex leather purse (барсетка) first emerged in the “Roaring Nineties” to become a signifier of mobbed-up New Russians along with crimson sport coats, heavy gauge gold jewelry, the chrome dome, and the “mano cornuta”. Of these traits, only the purse endured into the third millennium as an indispensable accoutrement of business élite. It persists as a potent reminder of the feminine side of Russian toughness, long renowned in the West for being naturally inclined to sodomy and buggery. And the traditional contents of the Slavic purse are as important as its formal aspects. Recall that two months ago, while Kiev mayor’s daughter Kristina Chernovetskaya was stuck in traffic in the northern suburbs of Paris, a man wrenched open the door of her luxury hire car and made off with her handbag containing jewelry with a value of more than $6M. Notably, great personal stockpiles of Russian wealth far exceed piddling clusters of Ukrainian booty. And going by the historical precedent, each must be regarded as a temporary loan held precariously by its current possessors on the sufferance of Russian populace. Hence the lasting adversity between Russian forces of law and order and purse-snatchers (барсеточники). All that adds up to a sound rationale for subjecting ordinary Russian drivers to summary impressment into hazardous police duty of preserving the honor and integrity of Russian bags.

Let us return to our American deer mice. The same rodent sperm that joins in packs with its congeners to outrace competitors issued by another male, will congregate with the former in the formation of another kind of live barricades, copulatory plugs meant for intercepting the latter. Even among us primates, female promiscuity correlates with copulatory plug formation. Which is to say that live barricades will always be with our skanky cunts.
larvatus: (Default)
                Les Deux Besoins                 The Two Needs
     ‘Et le pharmacien … entonna:
    “J’ai deux grands bœufs dans mon étable.
    Deux grands bœufs blancs.…”
Sénecal lui mit la main sur la bouche, il n’aimait pas le désordre.’
(Gustave Flaubert. L’Éducation Sentimentale.)
     ‘And the pharmacist … sang out:
    “I have two big oxen in my stable.
    Two big white oxen.…”
Sénecal put a hand over his mouth, he did not like disorderly conduct.’
(Gustave Flaubert. Sentimental Education.)
Il n’y a sans doute que l’artiste qui puisse finir par voir (et, si l’on veut, par faire voir aux quelques-uns pour qui il existe) la monotone centralité de ce qu’un chacun veut, pense, fait et souffre, de ce qu’un chacun est. N’ayant cessé de s’y consacrer, même alors qu’il n’y voyait goutte, mais avant qu’il n’eût accepté de n’y voir goutte, il peut à la rigueur finir par s’en apercevoir.
    Il se mouvait pourtant, le berceau de Galilée.
    Ce foyer, autour duquel l’artiste peut prendre conscience de tourner, comme la monade — sauf erreur — autour d’elle-même, on ne peut évidemment en parler, pas plus que d’autres entités substantielles, sans en falsifier l’idée. C’est ce que chacun fera à sa façon. L’appeler le besoin, c’est une façon comme une autre.
    Les autres, les innombrables béats et sains d’esprit, l’ignorent. Ils ont beau être fixés du même trait, ils prennent les lieux dans l’état où ils se trouvent, ils ne laissent rien monter chez eux qui puisse compromettre la solidité des planchers. C’est à l’exclusion de grand besoin, sur lui si j’ose dire, qu’ils vaquent aux petits. D’où cette vie toute en marge de son principe, cette vie faite de décisions, de satisfactions, de réponses, de menus besoins assassinés, cette vie de plante à la croisée, de choux pensant et même bien pensant, la seule vie possible pour ceux qui se voient dans la nécessité d’en mener une, c’est à dire la seule vie possible.
    Besoin de quoi ? Besoin d’avoir besoin.
    Deux besoins, dont le produit fait l’art. Qu’on se garde bien d’y voir un primaire et un secondaire. Il y a des jours, surtout en Europe, ou la route reflète mieux que le miroir. Préférer l’un des testicules à l’autre, ce serait aller sur les platebandes de la métaphysique. A moins d’être le démon de Maxwell.
    Falsifions davantage.
Doubtless only the artist could finally see (and, if you will, make see the few for whom he exists) the monotonous centrality of that, which each of us wants, thinks, does and suffers, of that, which each of us is. Never having ceased devoting himself to it, even as he saw nothing, but before he had accepted seeing nothing, he could perhaps finally perceive it.
    And yet it moved, Galileo’s cradle.
    This hub, around which the artist may become aware of revolving, as the monad — unless I am mistaken — revolves around itself, obviously we cannot talk about it, not any more than we can talk about other substantial entities, without falsifying its idea. This is what each of us will do in his own way. To call it the need is as good a way as any other.
    The others, the countless blissful and sane, are unaware of it. Though they have been made in the same fashion, they accept their settings as they find them, they let nothing emerge in themselves to compromise the soundness of their flooring. It is to the exclusion of a great need, on top of it, if I may say so, that they attend to the small ones. Hence this life on the margins of its principle, this life made up of decisions, of satisfactions, of responses, of tiny murdered needs, this life of a plant in a window, life of a thinking and even well-intentioned cabbage, the only life possible for those who find themselves needing to live one, that is, the only life possible.
    Need of what? Need of needing.
    Two needs, whose product is art. Let us beware of seeing one as primary and the other as secondary. There are days, especially in Europe, when the road reflects better than the mirror. To favor one testicle over the other, is to encroach on the terrain of metaphysics. Unless you are Maxwell’s demon.
    Let us falsify further.
Read more... )
larvatus: (MZ)
Welcher Mensch wird sich vermessen, die Ethik der Bergpredigt, etwa den Satz: „Widerstehe nicht dem Übel“ oder das Bild von der einen und der anderen Backe, „wissenschaftlich widerlegen“ zu wollen? Und doch ist klar: es ist, innerweltlich angesehen, eine Ethik der Würdelosigkeit, die hier gepredigt wird: man hat zu wählen zwischen der religiösen Würde, die diese Ethik bringt, und der Manneswürde, die etwas ganz anderes predigt: „Widerstehe dem Übel,—sonst bist du für seine Übergewalt mitverantwortlich.“ Je nach der letzten Stellungnahme ist für den Einzelnen das eine der Teufel und das andere der Gott, und der Einzelne hat sich zu entscheiden, welches für ihn der Gott und welches der Teufel ist. Und so geht es durch alle Ordnungen des Lebens hindurch.

What man will take upon himself the attempt to “refute scientifically” the ethic of the Sermon on the Mount? For instance, the proposition, “Resist no evil” or the image of turning the other cheek? And yet it is clear, from a worldly perspective, that an ethic of indignity is being preached here; one has to choose between the religious dignity that this ethic confers and the dignity of manly conduct that preaches something quite different: “Resist evil, lest you be jointly responsible for its empire.” According to our ultimate standpoint, the one is of the devil and the other of God, and the individual has to decide, which for him is God, and which is the devil. And so it goes through all the orders of life.

        —Max Weber, Wissenschaft als Beruf / Science as a Vocation, 7 November 1917


Befreien wir es aber zunächst von einer ganz trivialen Verfälschung. Es kann nämlich zunächst die Ethik auftreten in einer sittlich höchst fatalen Rolle. Nehmen wir Beispiele. Sie werden selten finden, daß ein Mann, dessen Liebe sich von einer Frau ab- und einer andern zuwendet, nicht das Bedürfnis empfindet, dies dadurch vor sich selbst zu legitimieren, daß er sagt: sie war meiner Liebe nicht wert, oder sie hat mich enttäuscht, oder was dergleichen „Gründe“ mehr sind. Eine Unritterlichkeit, die zu dem schlichten Schicksal: daß er sie nicht mehr liebt, und daß die Frau das tragen muß, in tiefer Unritterlichkeit sich eine „Legitimität“ hinzudichtet, kraft deren er für sich ein Recht in Anspruch nimmt und zu dem Unglück noch das Unrecht auf sie zu wälzen trachtet. Ganz ebenso verfährt der erfolgreiche erotische Konkurrent: der Gegner muß der wertlosere sein, sonst wäre er nicht unterlegen. Nichts anderes ist es aber selbstverständlich, wenn nach irgendeinem siegreichen Krieg der Sieger in würdeloser Rechthaberei beansprucht: ich siegte, denn ich hatte recht. Oder, wenn jemand unter den Fürchterlichkeiten des Krieges seelisch zusammenbricht und nun, anstatt schlicht zu sagen: es war eben zu viel, jetzt das Bedürfnis empfindet, seine Kriegsmüdigkeit vor sich selbst zu legitimieren, indem er die Empfindung substituiert: ich konnte das deshalb nicht ertragen, weil ich für eine sittlich schlechte Sache fechten mußte. Und ebenso bei dem im Kriege Besiegten. Statt nach alter Weiber Art nach einem Kriege nach dem „Schuldigen“ zu suchen,—wo doch die Struktur der Gesellschaft den Krieg erzeugte—, wird jede männliche und herbe Haltung dem Feinde sagen: „Wir verloren den Krieg—ihr habt ihn gewonnen. Das ist nun erledigt: nun laßt uns darüber reden, welche Konsequenzen zu ziehen sind entsprechend den sachlichen Interessen, die im Spiel waren, und—die Hauptsache—angesichts der Verantwortung vor der Zukunft, die vor allem den Sieger belastet.“ Alles andere ist würdelos und rächt sich. Verletzung ihrer Interessen verzeiht eine Nation, nicht aber Verletzung ihrer Ehre, am wenigsten eine solche durch pfäffische Rechthaberei. Jedes neue Dokument, das nach Jahrzehnten ans Licht kommt, läßt das würdelose Gezeter, den Haß und Zorn wieder aufleben, statt daß der Krieg mit seinem Ende wenigstens sittlich begraben würde. Das ist nur durch Sachlichkeit und Ritterlichkeit, vor allem nur: durch Würde möglich. Nie aber durch eine „Ethik“, die in Wahrheit eine Würdelosigkeit beider Seiten bedeutet. Anstatt sich um das zu kümmern, was den Politiker angeht: die Zukunft und die Verantwortung vor ihr, befaßt sie sich mit politisch sterilen, weil unaustragbaren Fragen der Schuld in der Vergangenheit. Dies zu tun, ist politische Schuld, wenn es irgendeine gibt. Und dabei wird überdies die unvermeidliche Verfälschung des ganzen Problems durch sehr materielle Interessen übersehen: Interessen des Siegers am höchstmöglichen Gewinn—moralischen und materiellen—, Hoffnungen des Besiegten darauf, durch Schuldbekenntnisse Vorteile einzuhandeln: wenn es irgend etwas gibt, was „gemein“ ist, dann dies, und das ist die Folge dieser Art von Benutzung der „Ethik“ als Mittel des „Rechthabens“.

First, let us free ourselves from a quite trivial falsification, that ethics may first arise in a role that is highly compromised morally. Let us consider examples. Rarely will you find that a man whose love turns from one woman to another feels no need to legitimate this before himself by saying: she was not worthy of my love, or, she has disappointed me, or whatever other like “reasons” exist. This is an attitude that, with a profound lack of chivalry, adds a fancied “legitimacy” to the plain fact that he no longer loves her and that the woman has to bear it. By virtue of this “legitimation”, the man claims a right for himself and besides causing the misfortune seeks to put her in the wrong. Likewise, for the successful amatory competitor, the adversary must be less worthy, otherwise he would not have lost out. It is no different, of course, if after a victorious war the victor in undignified self-righteousness claims, “I have won because I was right”. Or, if somebody under the frightfulness of war collapses psychologically, and instead of simply saying it was just too much, he feels the need of legitimizing his war weariness to himself by substituting the feeling, “I could not bear it because I had to fight for a morally bad cause”. And likewise with the defeated in war. Instead of searching like old women for the “guilty one” after the war—given a situation wherein the structure of society produced the war—everyone with a manly and controlled attitude would tell the enemy: “We lost the war. You have won it. That is now all over. Now let us discuss what conclusions must be drawn according to the objective interests that came into play, and what is the main thing in view of the responsibility towards the future that above all burdens the victor.” Anything else is undignified and will rebound. A nation forgives if its interests have been damaged, but no nation forgives if its honor has been offended, especially by a bigoted self-righteousness. Every new document that comes to light after decades revives the undignified lamentations, the hatred and scorn, instead of allowing the war at its end to be buried, at least morally. This is possible only through objectivity and chivalry and above all only through dignity. But never is it possible through an “ethic”, which in truth signifies a lack of dignity on both sides. Instead of being concerned with what the politician is interested in, the future and the responsibility towards the future, this ethic is concerned with politically sterile questions of past guilt, which are not to be settled politically. To act in this way is politically guilty, if such guilt exists at all. And it overlooks the unavoidable falsification of the whole problem, through very material interests: namely, the victor's interest in the greatest possible moral and material gain; the hopes of the defeated to trade in advantages through confessions of guilt. If anything is “vulgar”, then, this is, and it is the result of this fashion of exploiting “ethics” as a means of “being in the right”.

larvatus: (Default)
     Ἡράκλειτος τὸ ἀντίξουν συμφέρον καὶ ἐκ τῶν διαφερόντων καλλίστην ἁρμονίαν καὶ πάντα κατ᾽ ἔριν γίνεσθαι: ἐξ ἐναντίας δὲ τούτοις ἄλλοι
Heracleitus says, ‘Opposition unites,’ and ‘The fairest harmony springs from difference,’ and ‘'Tis strife that makes the world go on.’
—Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics 1155b1-6, translated by J. Bywater
Thirty-three years ago the author of these screeds walked free after serving a fifteen day sentence for petty hooliganism with twenty-two codefendants, counting among the first Soviet political protesters to get away with a slap on the wrist. The Berlin Wall came down thirteen years later, to the day. Coincidence? You decide.

Meanwhile, the philosophy of freedom is making giant strides in Russia. On 18 April 2009, Vadim Karastelev, head of the local Human Rights Committee, protested the curfew forbidding anyone under 18 years of age from appearing in the streets of Krasnodar region by displaying a sign with the slogan “Freedom is not given, it is taken”, a paraphrase of an analogous quotation about rights taken from a play by Maxim Gorky:
Прав—не дают, права—берут… Человек должен сам себе завоевать права, если не хочет быть раздавленным грудой обязанностей…
Rights aren’t given, rights are taken… Man must fight to win his rights if he doesn’t want to be crushed by a mountain of duties…
Herewith the expert philosophical analysis rendered in connection with his public display: Read more... ) Vadim Karastelev’s slogan echoes the combative demon of Charles Baudelaire:
Celui-là seul est l’égal d’un autre, qui le prouve, et celui-là seul est digne de la liberté, qui sait la conquérir.
Only he is the equal of another, who proves it, and only he is worthy of liberty, who can conquer it.
In his turn, Baudelaire drew upon Goethe’s Faust calling for free humanity jointly creating universal welfare in a free society:
Ja! diesem Sinne bin ich ganz ergeben, 
das ist der Weisheit letzter Schluß: 
Nur der verdient sich Freiheit wie das Leben,
der täglich sie erobern muß.
This is the final product of my strife,
The greatest wisdom mankind ever knew:
He only earns his freedom and his life, 
Who boldly conquers them each day anew.
The Faustian maxim is infinitely malleable, lending itself as the populist motto for the National Socialism of Alfred Rosenberg, the Marxism of Ernst Thälmann, and the dissident humanism of Andrei Sakharov. May it serve as the battle cry for the advent of freedom in Russia.
larvatus: (Default)
Sigmund Freud’s Beiträge zur Psychologie des Liebeslebens, or Contributions To The Psychology Of Love comprise three articles:
  1. “Über einen besonderen Typus der Objektwahl beim Manne”, Jahrbuch für psychoanalytische und psychopathologische Forschungen, Vol. 2, 1910, pp. 389-97; Gesammelte Werke, VIII, pp. 66-77; “A Special Type of Choice of Object Made by Men”, Standard Edition, Vol. 11, pp. 165-175
  2. “Über die allgemeinste Erniedrigung des Liebeslebens” (Beiträge zur Psychologie des Liebeslebens II), Jahrbuch für psychoanalytische und psychopathologische Forschungen, Vol. 4, 1912, pp. 40-50; Gesammelte Werke, Vol. VIII, pp. 78-91; “On the Universal Tendency to Debasement in the Sphere of Love”, Standard Edition, Vol. 11, pp. 179-190;
  3. “Das Tabu der Virginität” (Beiträge zur Psychologie des Liebeslebens III). Sammlung kleiner Schriften zur Neurosenlehre, Leipzig-Vienna, Vierte Folge, 1917, pp. 229-251; Gesammelte Werke, Vol. XII: 159-180; “The Taboo of Virginity”, Standard Edition, Vol.11, pp. 193-208.
In the second of these articles reproduced below, Freud discusses male impotence that arises from an incestuous fixation on mother or sister. In the broadest strokes that fall short of caricature, his approach derives from the hypothesis that human sexual desires are based on childhood developments that adults ordinarily no longer consciously access. In regard of these developments, Freud identifies two currents in erotic life. The older affectionate current, originally directed towards the infant’s earliest caretakers, typically the mother, eventually becomes complemented by the sensual current that attains its acme during puberty. The oedipal prohibition turns the sensual current elsewhere. But it often remains fixated to its original incestuous objects, whereby the whole of a young man’s sensuality becomes tied to incestuous phantasies in the unconscious. Impotence ensues. Short of this extreme development, pleasure departs from sexual relations. Men seldom combine the two erotic currents, taking complete satisfaction in the same woman instead of directing each current to different women. But perhaps the erotic instinct is bound to remain perpetually unsatisfied in the choice of object. In later work, Freud would develop the argument locating the gain in the processes of sublimation responsible for the development of civilization. Read more... )
larvatus: (Default)
Some time ago I wondered, what Aristotle might have meant by claiming in the Rhetoric 2.24, at 1401a22, that to be without a dog is most dishonorable. My solution arrived Read more... ) Crossposted to [info]larvatus, [info]linguaphiles, [info]ancient_philo, [info]classicalgreek, and [info]classics.
larvatus: (Default)
[info]letopisetz:
Собственно, сторонников Израиля в России можно разделить на несколько категорий:
1. Евреи
2. Нееврейские родственники и друзья евреев, сочувствующие им
3. Юдофилы
4. Исламофобы
5. Националисты-антисемиты (те из них, которые желают запереть евреев в своеобразном израильском гетто, выдавив их из Европы)
У остальных россиян сочувствовать Израилю или поддерживать действия АОИ нет никаких причин. Даже наоборот, есть причины поддержать арабских противников Израиля. Ведь “враг моего врага— мой друг”.
In fact, the supporters of Israel in Russia can be divided into several categories:
1. Jews
2. Jewish relatives and friends of Jews, sympathetic to them
3. Judaeophiles
4. Islamophobes
5. Nationalist anti-Semites (those who want to lock up the Jews in the sui generis Israeli ghetto, having expelled them from Europe)
The remainder of Russians have no reason for sympathizing with Israel or supporting the IDF actions. On the contrary, they have good reasons for supporting the Arab enemies of Israel. After all, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
[info]larvatus:
Не раскрыта тема номер 6, россиян-любителей вашингтонского обкома. You have failed to account for category Number 6, the Russian caucus of Washington’s party line supporters.
[info]letopisetz:
Совершенно верно.
Есть еще одна категория—российские западники, воспринимающие Израиль просто как форпост Запада на Ближнем Востоке.
Precisely.
There is another category— Russian Westernizers who perceive Israel as a western outpost in the Middle East
[info]larvatus:
«Всё действительное разумно, всё разумное действительно.» Раз они нам внедряют своих продажных совков осколков империи, мы им должны внедрять наших шпионов и лазутчиков российских западников. “The real is rational and the rational real.” If they are infiltrating us with sell-out Homo Sovieticus specimens imperial rudiments, we must infiltrate them with our spies and operatives Russian Westernizers.
[info]letopisetz:
“Мы” и “они”— это в Вашей системе координат кто? Who are “us” and “them” in your coordinate system?
[info]larvatus:
У меня синий паспорт. А у Вас? I have a blue passport. What about you?
[info]letopisetz:
Для меня паспорт—средство передвижения. For me, a passport is a means of transportation.
[info]larvatus:
Вы не ответили на мой вопрос. You have not answered my question.
[info]letopisetz:
Вы тоже:
http://letopisetz.livejournal.com/682664.html?thread=6009512#t6009512
А цвет паспорта— синий.
Nor have you:
http://letopisetz.livejournal.com/682664.html?thread=6009512#t6009512
As for the color of my passport, it is blue.
[info]larvatus:
Здесь полагаются памятка и анекдот. Вот Вам памятка:
I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the armed forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.
—U.S. Naturalization Oath
Так что насчёт “нас” и “их”, у меня с Вами общая система координат. А вот и анекдот:
Для разрядки, так сказать, напряга, пожалуйста, анекдотик. Вернее, не анекдотик, а быль. Но быль до того невероятную, что она, паскудина, сама себя осознает вдруг легендарной и берет кликуху Анекдот, чтобы таким хитромудрым способом продлить на какое-то время свою жизнь. Да и само время, гражданин Гуров, само наше анекдотическое времечко недаром окрестили не столько вожди, сколько их плюгавые шестерки из поэтов и композиторов, временем легендарным.
    Короче говоря, приводят к Будённому перебежчика. Белого. Так, мол, и так, Семён Михайлович, постиг я в мгновение ока происходящее, дошла до меня безысходность белого движения. Чуять начинаю за три версты красоту ваших кавалерийских идей, возьмите к себе воевать. Хорошо. Переодели, переобули, дали красавца-гнедого. Повоевал немного белый, но вдруг показалось ему, что снова постиг он в мгновенье ока происходящее и слинял к Деникину. Мужественно явился и говорит Самому: так, мол, и так, ошибся я. Будённый — полное говно, вокруг него мерзкий плебс, большей вони и совершенней лжи, чем советская власть, вообразить себе невозможно, и лучше уж, ваше превосходительство, смерть в наших безысходных рядах, чем торжество в смрадном каре обманутых маньяками плебеев. Простите великодушно. Время у нас смутное, возможен, согласитесь, поиск душой верного пути. Деникин не стал дискутировать на эту тему. Он отдал дважды перебежчика обратно Будённому. Белый стал втолковывать этой тупой усатой мандавше, что он не подлец, а человек ищущий, и наконец, в последней попытке спасти шкуру, брякнул что-то насчет раздвоения личности. Будённый вынимает саблю, пробует отточку клинка на коготище и врезает красно-белому по темечку. До самой жопы его расколол, а дальше тот сам рассыпался. “Мы—большевики,—говорит Будённый,—проблему раздвоения личности решаем по-своему: сабелькой!”
—Юз Алешковский, «Рука (Повествование палача)»
Это к вопросу о паспорте, как о “средстве передвижения”.
Here we can use a reminder and an anecdote. Herewith your reminder:
I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the armed forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.
—U.S. Naturalization Oath
So in regard to “us” and “them”, you and I share the same coordinate system. And now, the anecdote:
To begin our détente, so to speak, here is an anecdote. Or rather, not an anecdote, but a true story. But a true story so incredible that its lousy self suddenly becomes aware of its mythical nature and assumes the moniker of an Anecdote so as to prolong its life for a while by such mystical means. And our present itself, citizen Gurov, our pathetic times are not for nothing dubbed legendary, not so much by our leaders, but by their slavish rhymsters and tunesmiths.
    Anyway, a turncoat is brought to Budyonny. A White. Blah blah blah, Semyon Mikhailovich, the hopelessness of the White movement, it all came to me in the blink of an eye. I can smell from three miles away the beauty of your cavalry ideals, so let me fight on your side. Very well. They give him a new uniform, new boots, a beautiful bay stallion. So the White fights for a little white, but suddenly the meaning of it all seems once again to come to him in the blink of an eye, and he bolts back to Denikin. He bravely presents himself to the Man himsef: Blah blah blah, my bad. I was mistaken. Budyonny is a lousy shit, surrounded by vile plebs, there is no fouler stench and uglier lie imaginable than the Soviet regime, and Sir, I would much rather perish in our doomed formations than triumph among the rancid ranks of plebeians swindled by maniacs. I beg your magnanimous forgiveness. Our times are troubled, you can understand a soul searching for the right path. Denikin did not debate this matter. He handed over the serial turncoat back to Budyonny. The White tried to explain to this moronic mustachioed louse that he was no villain, but a soul on a quest, and finally, in a desperate attempt to save his hide, blurted out something about a split personality. Budyonny draws his sabre, tests its edge against his claw, and cracks the Red-and-White right on top of his skull, splitting him all the way down to his ass, from whence he scatters on his own. “We, the Bolsheviks,” says Budyonny, “solve the problem of a split personality in our own way—with a sabre!”
—Yuz Aleshkovsky, The Hand or, the Confession of an Executioner
This is in regard to taking your passport as “a means of transportation.”
[info]letopisetz:
Только дегенерат может всерьез воспринимать подобные клятвы. Only a degenerate can take such an oath seriously.

[info]larvatus:
Вам с этим заявлением—к Будённому. Я здесь ни при чём. Please take your pleading to Budyonny. I have nothing to do with it.

[info]letopisetz:
Счастливо! Good luck!

[info]furia_krucha:
Как так? Ведь до синего у вас верно был красный? How so? Didn’t you have a red passport before a blue one?

[info]larvatus:
Сначала у меня был красный паспорт. Потом я продал свою библиотеку, чтоб от него откупиться. Заодно и побывал в тюрьме, чтобы не жалеть о сделке. Наконец я дал клятву, чтобы был синий паспорт. Вот и вся история. First I had a red passport. Then I sold my library to pay for ridding myself of it. For good measure I went to jail to forestall any regrets regarding this deal. Finally, I swore an oath to get a blue passport. That’s the end of the story.
larvatus: (Default)
Среди наших друзей возник вопрос о взаимосвязанности крутящего момента и лошадиных сил. Эффективность крутящего момента замечательно истолкована в небезызвестном чапаевском анекдоте:
Полковник Бороздин зовёт денщика Петровича. «Чё изволите, ваше превосходительство?»—«Петрович, неси сюда рюмку водки и кота.» Петрович принёс. Полковник поддал. «Петрович, крути коту яйца.» Петрович крутит. Кот орёт. Полковник утирает скупую мужскую слезу: «Котик-котик, как я тебя понимаю…»
Здесь никакие лошадиные силы не помогут. Действительно, представим себе, что не Петрович крутит коту яйца, а лягает их копытом белый чапаевский конь. В этом случае, вместо издавания желаемого вопля, кот либо разобьётся вдребезги, либо улетит к ебёной матери. Короче говоря, при попытке подмены крутящего момента лошадиными силами выходит пагубная неувязка.
Our friends are puzzled by the interrelatedness of torque and horsepower. The effects of torque are remarkably illustrated in this Chapayevite tale of a certain renown:
Colonel Borozdin summons his batman Petrovich. “At your service, your excellency!”—“Petrovich, fetch me a glass of vodka and a cat.” Petrovich conveys. The colonel guzzles. “Petrovich, twist his balls.” Petrovich twists. The cat wails. The colonel dabs his moistened eyes: “Kitty-cat, kitty-cat, I understand…”
All the king’s horses would be unavailing. Indeed, imagine that instead of the cat’s balls getting twisted by Petrovich, they get kicked by Chapaev’s white horse. In this scenario, instead of emitting the desired shriek, the cat would either break into pieces or launch into orbit. In short, an attempt to replace torque with horsepower would result in a fatal mishap.


larvatus: (Default)
                What Should I Write About?
    “Mel was depressed.” A lot of notable writing comes out of unhappiness. This does not mean you should hack off a toe just to make sure you’re miserable. Go with what you have. As a Lonely Guy, you should be set up nicely in this area. Remember, though, that unalloyed misery on the page is not necessarily rousing.
    The line “Mel was depressed” at the beginning of a book is no guarantee that the reader will fly through the pages to see if Mel ever gets to feel better. A few curiosity seekers, perhaps, but not enough to send the book zooming up the lists. At minimum, have Mel feel depressed as he is diving beneath a Sardinian reef, where no man has ever felt depressed before.
    — Bruce Jay Friedman, The Lonely Guy’s Book of Life, in The Lonely Guy and The Slightly Older Guy, Grove Press, 2001, p. 104

                О чём я должен писать?
    “Мел переживал депрессию.” Много замечательной литературы проистекает из несчастья. Это не значит, что вы должны отрубить палец ноги, чтобы обеспечить своё несчастье. Воспользуйтесь тем, что у вас уже в наличии. Являясь Одиноким Парнем, вы должны иметь немало уместных запасов. Помните однако, что однообразные страдания размазанные на странице не всегда воодушевляют читателя.
    Строка “Мел переживал депрессию”, помещённая в начале книги, ещё не обеспечивает, что читатель станет листать страницы, чтобы узнать, полегчает ли Мелу. Возможно, что это сделают несколько буквоедов, но их не хватит, чтобы заслать книгу в список бестселлеров. По меньшей мере, дайте Мелу возможность переживать депрессию в то время, как он ныряет под Сардинский риф, где никто никогда до него не переживал депрессиию.
    — Брюс Джей Фридман, Книга жизни Одинокого Парня, перевёл МЗ
larvatus: (Default)
Apart from scattered critical plaudits and academic credits as an author of an obscure masterpiece of originality far more profound than that found in popular literature of his homeland, Russian philosopher Dmitry Galkovsky is practically unknown in the English-speaking world. His finest moment took place a decade ago, in a 1997 award of a literary prize sponsored by Boris Berezovsky. Its report by The Voice of Russia deserves to be savored in its entirety: Read more... ) Galkovsky declined to accept the monetary award that accompanied his prize. Over the past decade, he emerged as one of pioneers of Russian literary Internet, reproducing his writings as an online hypertext, boasting a popular LiveJournal blog complemented by an online coven of acolytes dedicated to systematic study of their master’s aporematic opera omnia, and creating a community of bloggers periodically reconvening in “Real Life”.
    Herewith the closing section of his programmatic 1994 survey of Russian politics and philosophy. It represents the first English rendering of his writings, to be followed by the first extended commentary on its content. Read more... ) Crossposted to [info]larvatus, [info]history, and [info]philosophy.

March 2014

S M T W T F S
       1
23 4 5 6 78
9 1011 12 13 14 15
16 171819202122
23242526272829
3031     

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 19th, 2017 11:30 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios