31 December 2007

POFT or pointless?

I really like this article by Bryan Appleyard in the Sunday Times (UK) of 30 December 2007. I think he was too kind.
Twilight of the greats?

This year saw the death of so many big names. Perhaps it saw the end of greatness, too. So, where do we go from here to find the artists that matter?

It was a year in which a certain type of person died — Michelangelo Antonioni, Ingmar Bergman, Norman Mailer, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Jean Baudrillard. These were intellectually pungent, culturally potent individuals, angrily dismissed as often as they were called “great”, “seminal” or “genius”. And with Luciano Pavarotti dead, another type of greatness vanished from the planet.
The death of Baudrillard left a gaping hole in the cultural landscape. Suddenly, we lack a great POFT — a Pointlessly Obscure French Thinker. Baudrillard, like Kristeva, Foucault, Lacan and many others, was a poseur and rhetorician. But, like some of the others, though certainly not Foucault, he was also a very brilliant man. His insights into the constructed nature of contemporary reality were, while usually buried beneath pointless obscurity, scintillating. If the French could shake off the posturing that has disfigured their post-war thought, they could perhaps recover their role as the great essayists of the world. We need a new Pascal, a new Montaigne.
Pointlessly obscure? I think pointless would be a more apt description. As is much of post-modernism.

Today was a work day, though most of the office was empty. Just like Christmas Eve, we were allowed to go home after lunch time. Woohoo! Except it was very hot in the middle of the day when I walked home.

I went over to Tim and Toni's for a barbeque dinner, but left to walk Kane2.

I should go back to Tim and Toni's now, but there is an interesting program on tv now - a telecast of the 2006 V Festival (squeezed into one hour). Maybe later. So much good music coming out of the UK. I know most of it. Unfortunately, they aren't as popular in Australia.

(edit 11pm - new post in my music blog)

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