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a Confederacy of Dunces

Hi, I bought a new book yesterday. I hesitated just because I didn't even know 'confederacy' and 'dunces', but with my smartphone, it's ok now :) . I'll be able to read it on the beach and keep you aware of the topic. At first sight, it's the life of a community in New-Orleans in the years 1960 (I wasn't born yet, :( ). It is said it 's funny but I've seen the writer committed suicide because nobody wanted to publish it :( .

28 comments - page 3

  • Yes, Poland has a harder position in the map of Europe. This country had known a lot of invasions.
  • Dear Euridice,

    I agree. Of course, [b]mis[/b]conceptions and [b]mis[/b]interpretations should never matter - and that's exactly what I'm trying to emphasize here. They do not matter for people who 'merely' enjoy music and lyrics. But, on the hand, music and lyrics have the potential to convey intentions and message subconsciously. In case of Richard Wagner, I would NEVER say that listening to Wagner will turn somebody into an anti-Semite.

    Insight into the intentions of the artist is not what matters. Especially when it comes to Richard Wagner, not even the knowledge of what Wagner supposedly tried to express (possibly,it was much more then apologetics are willing to admit) would have helped to avert the "danger". But putting his own affections with German mythology (with all it's reverence of German 'heroes' and the idolatry of 'might') in a prudent context that goes [b]beyond the composer's intentions[/b] would have possibly averted the devastating misinterpretations in the 20th century - misinterpretations, that were done prominently by [b]non-scholars[/b], that is [b]NON-universtiy[/b], people, who were overwhelmed and moved by the music and simultaneously imposed their own misconceptions on the mythology, rivetingly conveyed by the music, more or less along the lines of Wagner himself. Mind you, whether Richard Wagner was an anti-Semite is a question I cannot answer and I dare not to answer with absolute certitude, but most probably he was. His his works show an inveterate hatred on all Jewish. And he was quite obviously an admirer of heroism and might.

    That is absolutely not to say that enjoying music alone is dangerous, and surely not that every fan of Wagner's music can emerge into an Anti-Semite.

    But music can reinforce misconceptions, even sick notions of the composers himself. Again: this is not say that Wagner had a conviction that was tantamount to National Socialism. But I consider Wagner as least as a trailblazer or propagator (one of many) of ideas that were integral part of fascism and the NS ideology, and he was paternalistic and more or less megalomaniac. At least part of his world views and resentments has been conveyed in this work. The following maybe be only a hunch, but it's quite conspicuous that not only Adolf Hitler was an ardent admirer of Wagner's work and himself (he was a [b]close acquaintance of the Wagner family [/b] and a welcome house guest), but also Kind Ludwig II. of Bavaria, also an admirer, friend patron as well, who was surely not a devilish figure like Hitler, but a person with a mental disorder and an egocentric person, perhaps even megalomaniac, despite all the adulations he still gets from some contemporaries. What is it about Wagner's music which [b]can[/b] draw 'troubled minds' to his work and make fervent admirers for it? Conversely, I have never heard about an admirer of Mozart operas who was inspired by them to bad things. Maybe there are some whom we never heard of. Bu
  • Dear Whacky

    I don't feel comfortable in English as you, so I haven't the words to express exactly my mind. You're right: Wagner was obsessed by might and by strenght. Yes, he can be considerated as a propagator of an ideology. But was he a facist even if his operas had inspired facism culture, I don't know, and I think perhaps he was less a facist propagator than Carl Orff, or Richard Strauss. And what was exactly the position of Richard Strauss? He was anti-semite but he protected his orchestra chief who was a Jewish.
    I don't know why Richard is the symbol of nazi culture because some others were real nazi as Carl G. Jung or Martin Heiddegger. And Heiddegger were in a relationship with Hannah Arendt!
    And other people were accused to be facism propagators as Marquis de Sade or F. Niezstche. The both are also fascinated by might, by strenght and by the "superman". But Sade had republican political engagements: he was at the "Convention" with the revolutionnaries even though he was an aristocratic, he wrote "Français, encore un effort pour être Républicains".
    For the rest, if I like opera, I'm just a listener and not a specialist of this question, and I feel better with litterature which is one of my passion.

    Sophie, we're floading the topic!
  • You drive a hard bargain and you're not easy to convince. But so am I.

    Don't waste your precious working time to give elaborate answers in this forum. Does your superior know about this ;-)
  • No, no, don't worry ;) it keeps the ball rolling and now we (GG Readers) have some wheat to be ground :)
  • "Don't waste your precious working time to give elaborate answers in this forum. Does your superior know about this ;-)"

    Whacky, that's not fair; in this forum, we can escape the torments of hierarchy and feel bewildered like in a masked ball...:(, you just play with our nerves for free...:(
  • Sophie, if you want to have rural comparisons, you’d better say : we keep the wheel grinding the grain, just like Marie-Antoinette in Versailles who made hay… Otherwise, perhaps you could be accompanied to the masked ball, even virtually in this forum, by Puss in Boots (Guess where he is).
  • You're right Whacky. I'm not easy to convince. And I like to debate, to discuss... I'm not doing this on my working time but on my leasure time. And to practice english and try to debate in this langage can be consider as a plus for my job. So...
  • From Sophie Moa:
    Whacky, that's not fair; in this forum, we can escape the torments of hierarchy and feel bewildered like in a masked ball...:(, you just play with our nerves for free...:(


    I don't see anything unfair - and it isn't. And it's not playing with anybody' nerves. AND: I was adressing Euridice jokingly.

    Did I hurt your feelings with my harmless, not too serious comment? Calm down, 'dear' Sophie.

    Nobody is any way advocating oppressing hierarchy or Orwellian 1984 scenarios. Have you read too much of Orwell because you get nervous when anybody in this forum mentions 'superiors'? Are you working in a company with an authoritarion hierarchy which make you touchy on this forum? Does your boss control your Internet activities meticulouly? That's bad - but not MY FAULT.

    Sophie - you have a quite an influence in this forum? Morale police, raising the finger and rebuking 'bad guys'. You are our all formidable superior. Is that fair? I don't know (I am KIDDING - am I?)

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