May 9, 2008

Does this statue of Martin Luther King, Jr. look too much like that statue of Saddam Hussein we pulled down in Baghdad?

WaPo reports:
A powerful federal arts commission is urging that the sculpture of Martin Luther King Jr. proposed for a memorial on the Tidal Basin be reworked because it is too "confrontational" and reminiscent of political art in totalitarian states.

The U.S. Commission of Fine Arts thinks "the colossal scale and Social Realist style of the proposed statue recalls a genre of political sculpture that has recently been pulled down in other countries," commission secretary Thomas Luebke said in a letter in April.

By law, no project like the memorial can go forward without approval from the commission, the federal agency that advises the government on public design and aesthetics in the capital.

A model of the statue has been built in China. The project's chief architect, Ed Jackson Jr., huddled with advisers this week in Ann Arbor, Mich., to discuss ways to address the commission's objections before sculpting of the granite statue begins.

"We said: 'Okay, this is what the commission said. How best can we achieve that and retain what we have accomplished thus far?' "

It is the second time in recent months that the memorial to the slain civil rights leader has come under fire. Last year, critics complained after a Chinese sculptor known for his monumental works of figures such as Mao Zedong was selected to create King and other elements of the memorial in China.
The sculpture — you can see the model of it at the link — is to be 28 feet tall. That's 8 feet taller than the statue of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Monument, but Lincoln is sitting down, so the scale is somewhat smaller. If you've ever seen the Lincoln statue in person, you know it's huge, much bigger than it seems in photographs. It's actually quite weird, I think. But why shouldn't the MLK monument be on a similar scale? And once you decide you want a large statue of a man, what is going to prevent it from looking like social realist sculptures? It's inherent in the concept. If social realist statues bother you, maybe you shouldn't order a colossus.

That said, perceptions of this particular colossus may be affected by 2 things:

1. The knowledge that the sculptor — Lei Yixin — is Chinese and made big statues of Mao Zedong.

2. Racism. You see a black man and you worry that he's angry or on the verge of a violent outburst. This man looks "confrontational."

Now, are these inappropriate considerations that we need to put aside in order to judge the statue properly? It's not obvious.

As to influence #1, the choice of the sculptor has already taken place, and it's not fair to reject him now for what we knew of him then. Nevertheless, we may expect him to express American values and even to exaggerate those values so that an average viewer who knows the sculptor made Mao statues will not see anything Maoist about the MLK statue. The sculptor has got a deficit to make up, and we ought to think about that as we judge his work. That's the argument that it's acceptable to not to overcome influence #1.

As to influence #2, you know very well that you should not be racist. But perhaps we should take into account that people viewing the statue are human and will therefore perceive a statue of a black man through whatever racism remains in their thought patterns. If there is to be a statue honoring a black man, perhaps the sculptor must make a special effort to avoid a depiction that prompts any racist perceptions. That's the argument that it's acceptable not to overcome influence #2 in judging the statue.

Now, with that in mind, what do we think of the Commission's criticism?
Its general design was approved by the seven-member federal commission that year, based on drawings of the Stone of Hope that showed a more subtle image of King, from the waist up, as if he were emerging organically out of the rock, the commission said....

Commission members said the sculpture "now features a stiffly frontal image, static in pose, confrontational in character," Luebke wrote. They "recommended strongly that the sculpture be reworked, both in form and modeling" and cited "precedents of a figure emerging from stone in the works of sculptors such as Michelangelo and Rodin."

The commission objected to what it perceived as the loss of the subtle way King seemed to be coming out of the stone in the drawings, Luebke said.

"I think that the metaphor of Dr. King being merged with the natural forces of this stone is absolutely essential to avoid colossal monumentalization," commission member N. Michael McKinnell said at the April 17 meeting.
So the large block of stone is crucial to the design. It's abstract and metaphorical. I have to agree that it looks like the sculptor wanted to depict a freestanding human figure and mainly annoyed at the restrictive block of stone connected to it. Yet that itself is metaphorical. Those Michelangelo sculptures Luebke is talking about were slaves. Their oneness with the stone expressed slavery. The MLK image should not relate to the stone in quite the same way. I think the real issue here is whether the thing is well sculpted. To my eye, it is not. The figure-stone relationship is not interesting or beautiful.

But the emerging-from-the-stone problem is less troublesome than the crossed arms. Jackson (the architect) defends the stance, and notes that they had a photograph of MLK with his arms crossed like that. But of course, there are innumerable photos of MLK and most of them, I'm sure, would never suggested themselves as a good model for a large statue. The point is the sculptor and his team liked the attitude of confrontation. They wanted MLK the "warrior." One consultant said they rejected the notion of MLK as "pacifist, placid, kind of vanilla." But crossed arms expressed resistance and even rejection. Much as MLK had cause to express such things in his lifetime, the question is what one expression do we now want carved in stone. Shouldn't he be more positive and welcoming? Shouldn't he love us now that we love him?

Or are we only thinking that way because we haven't gotten used to it?

Would you reject the brooding, downcast Lincoln sculpture if you were seeing it for the first time?



Oh, good Lord, he's so depressed! His clothes are horribly sagging. And he's slumping in that chair with his big, gawky hands hanging over those big Roman fasces. Fascism!

48 comments:

rhhardin said...

Today's King is pretty far from the speech

..we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

Free at last! Free at last!

Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!


What are white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants, and Catholics freed from, and thankful for having been freed from?

Their racism.

That was the freedom offered to blacks as well, but that did not fit with the political model.

So which statue is wanted today?

peter hoh said...

As it stands now, the statue is not working for me.

What would we think of the Lincoln statue, if viewing it for the first time? Great question.

Lei Yixin was in St. Paul a few years ago. We got to get up close and personal with his work in progress.

Quayle said...

The statute doesn't convey my impressions and feeling of the spirit of MLK.

A few months ago PBS in our location was replaying a number of documentaries on the civil rights struggle, which contained long portions of MLK's church speeches in Mississippi and Alabama. So my impressions of him are fresh in mind.

Yet, what I can see of the statue in the picture does not capture or convey the message, tone, or spirit of MLK.

MLK had a non-threatening gentleness about him. He didn't threaten whites as much as he inspired them to be their best selves. He called on them to live what they claimed they already lived. He eventually won because those better whites joined him. (And the whites that had hard hearts, he shamed them into going underground.)

I don't see much of that in the 'confrontational' image. The message is all wrong.

Theo Boehm said...
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MadisonMan said...

I find the crossed arms in discord with the spirit of King's message as well. We shall not be moved is a song I think of when I see MLK with his arms crossed like that. Shouldn't I be thinking We shall overcome?

The Drill SGT said...

Ann,

I think you are slanting this one.

1. The FA Commission has absolute control over what goes on the Mall.

2. The NCPC also doesn't like it

3. The FA Commission was shown a model, they approved the design. Now the design changed, they Don't like the changes and will require alterations.

Theo Boehm said...
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Maguro said...

Heh. MLK looks like my dad when he's getting bad service in a restaurant.

It will be interesting to see how our civil-rights leaders react to this. As I recall, there was a backlash against the selection of Lei because many felt a black sculptor should have been chosen. On the other hand, I think a lot of the same people will be pleased to see a more confrontational depiction of MLK.

Zeb Quinn said...

Sooner or later all statues get pulled down like Saddam Hussein's in Baghdad. In the fullness of time, as it were.

Zach said...

Lincoln's posture in that statue is a very good representation of the Lincoln described by history. He's mournful, thoughtful, gentle, a little bit hunched over. One hand is slightly clasped, the other is open. I believe his weight is slightly off-center. His hands are resting on fasces, the symbol of the Roman Republic -- the symbol of a people who are stronger because bound together.

Looking at the MLK statue, doesn't it give the impression that King achieved his goals through determination and stalwart agression and the usual strongman techniques? Compare it with the first page of a Google image search:

http://images.google.com/images?q=martin luther king&ie=UTF-8&oe=utf-8&rls=com.ubuntu:en-US:unofficial&client=firefox-a&um=1&sa=N&tab=wi

In almost all of these pictures, King is leaning forwards, not backwards. His mouth is open in a surprising number. He has very open, relaxed body language -- his hand is reaching forward in several.

The statue has a certain visual appeal, but it's not a good representation of King, and I agree it should be reworked.

Mortimer Brezny said...

If there is to be a statue honoring a black man, perhaps the sculptor must make a special effort to avoid a depiction that prompts any racist perceptions.

The obligation should be on the viewer to abandon racist perceptions. That's what MLK would have wanted.

MLK had a non-threatening gentleness about him. He didn't threaten whites as much as he inspired them to be their best selves.

MLK was considered threatening because he was powerful. His criticism of the Vietnam War was not well-received, and the purpose of his criticism was certainly not to make white people feel good about themselves.

Looking at the MLK statue, doesn't it give the impression that King achieved his goals through determination and stalwart agression and the usual strongman techniques?

No. It gives them impression that his work is not done and so he's cross. He's peering down in annoyance at anyone sauntering by who isn't helping to realize his dream. The criticism of the statue is that it might invoke feelings of guilt.

Which is precisely what the sculptor intends to do and precisely why MLK adopted a non-violent strategy. To invoke feelings of guilt. To instill opprobrium.

It's not a memorial. It's a statue intended to have an effect.

coenito said...

Strange that is how an artist creating works in a totalitarian country and especially (re)known(ed) for making monuments of totalitarian leaders doesn't quite have it in him to pick up the essentials of Martin Luther King Jr. and the American experience. Not saying he can't, artists are a remarkably flexible lot, but I'd have gone with the men and women who made the huge papier mache of the Statue of Liberty during the Tiananman protests. Oh yeah, forgot, that's right, they're dead.

Theo Boehm said...
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Chip Ahoy said...

MLK was always seen standing behind a lectern studded with microphones. There's also good photos of him seated with his hand to his cheek.

If they want him emerging from nature I'd consider depicting him pulling himself up out of the mud.

I'd consider giving him wings. Or at least incipient wings.

I'd consider a composition depicting him pulling up his boots although I don't recall seeing photos of him ever wearing any.

At any rate he was known for his speeches, always seen in a suit, seldom ever pointing or jabbing and not all that much gesticulating. Crossed arms does not compute with the impression left by MLK; that stance connotes obdurate steely recalcitrance. Maybe it means something else in China. Some heads and busts of MLK are really quite good.

Is the US bereft of sculptors? What up wi'dat? I'm agin' using a Chinese sculptor, but as always that decision is already made and presented fait accomplis. I was surprised to learn the US has a powerful federal arts commission. No one ever asked me to be on it. Bastards.

peter hoh said...

Here's my photo of Lei Yixin's St. Paul work.

Chip Ahoy said...

I recently read something risible about the Lincoln statue. His hands depict "A" and "L" in standard ASL. Ha ha ha ha ha. Well, you see what you look for. It would be a poorly formed "L" and their positions are reversed for that to work.

Original Mike said...

Does this statue of Martin Luther King, Jr. look too much like that statue of Saddam Hussein we pulled down in Baghdad?

No. Unlike Saddam, he's not, in the words of James Lileks, in the classic "great leader hails a cab" pose.

Great Leader hails a cab

Zach said...

No. It gives them impression that his work is not done and so he's cross. He's peering down in annoyance at anyone sauntering by who isn't helping to realize his dream. The criticism of the statue is that it might invoke feelings of guilt.

A 28 foot statue, standing, in an intimidating posture, is not thematically appropriate for either Martin Luther King or for a memorial in the nation's Capitol. Did King habitually glare peevishly at people on the off chance that they weren't helping him achieve his dream? Are the prospects for reconciliation so bad that King will never have occasion not to be cross?

For that matter, wouldn't an image of King that looks nothing like the popular memory of King be a really odd form of memorial?

Most of the statues in the Capitol have an air of benign approval. They served their day, made their contributions, and wait hopefully to see the future live up to their example.

Suppose you made a tour of monumental statues one day while visiting Washington. You see Jefferson, smiling, looking confidently into the distance. You see a fantastic statue of Lincoln, gentle and lost in thought. You see MLK, 9 feet taller than Jefferson, eight feet taller than Lincoln, glaring at you. Wouldn't the gentler, more modest sculptures of greater men implicitly undermine the MLK statue?

I'd prefer a 19 foot (same size as Jefferson) statue of King that looks like the iconic images we associate with the man and his legacy. Then he would be fitting in with the existing statues and drawing a line of continuity with them.

Blue Moon said...

Rhhardin:

You really don't like black people, do you? I mean that seriously -- everytime I see you talk about black people as a group, you say negative things. Feel free to correct me by pointing out that you have spoken with a majority of black people and that they are indeed racist.

Pogo said...

It reminds me of the travelling portrait painters in the 17 and 1800s who would have an already-painted torso, and fill in the head of your loved one for a fee.

Perhaps sculptor Lei Yixin has 20 or 30 stone torsos in the Dear Leader/Chairman/Cultural Revolution style left over from projects now abandoned, and he was hoping to pawn a few off on the stupid westerners.

Just chisel off the little red book and you're good to go!
"What do you mean? It looks just like him!"


More likely, social realism is his hammer (or 前苏联国旗(锤象征劳工,镰象征农民), and everything looks like a nail.

Theo Boehm said...
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Blue Moon said...

Zach: I hear you. Who knows where we'll be 20, 50, 100 years from now. The point of a statue should be to give the viewer a physical impression of the man as he was, not as he would feel today or as a commentary of how he would feel today. He would likely be up a proverbial tree about the Iraq war and the state of our inner cities, but we should not sculpt him that way.

peter hoh said...

You want a confrontational pose? I've got your confrontational pose.

And here's a link for you eggheads who want to read more about it.

vbspurs said...

An exercise, my fellow Althousians.

Look at the WaPo photo of the statue of Dr. King. Close your eyes. Open. Now click here.

I wonder how the statue got built, because this is not something which you can sneak through a committee, and then have them say, "Oh we didn't realise".

Cheers,
Victoria

peter hoh said...

Victoria, nice pic of the Stalin statue. When compared with it, and the Saddam statue, there's no way this King statue is built as it looks right now.

Of course, lots of things go through committee without people quite understanding what they are voting for.

To the committee's credit, there seems to be some sense that the sculpture does not capture the spirit of the initial sketches. I wish the WAPO had included a link to them.

peter hoh said...

The other problem is that the model of the sculpture clearly does not look like King. The face looks to be more of Asian heritage than African.

vbspurs said...

Victoria, nice pic of the Stalin statue.

Loved your St. Urho too! And what's better, is that I learnt something since I had no idea about it.

When compared with it, and the Saddam statue, there's no way this King statue is built as it looks right now.

Unfortunately, not. Is it being built with tax-payer money?

To the committee's credit, there seems to be some sense that the sculpture does not capture the spirit of the initial sketches. I wish the WAPO had included a link to them.

This reminds me of other statue anecdotes.

The proposed "Firemen and the US Flag" statue honouring the heroes of 9/11 showed, of course, 3 white firemen hoisting up the flag.

That outraged the Vulcan society, which said that portraying diversity should override fact.

"I think the artistic expression of diversity would supersede any concern over factual correctness."

Okay...

Another anecdote.

In 1998, a statue of our British queen, Catherine of Braganza, was meant to go up in Queens, NY.

This, as you might recall, caused a firestorm of controversy, for so many reasons -- not the least of which is that black activists said that Portugal traded in slaves, and we shouldn't be honouring that part of history.

The ironic part is that the sculptor totally threw out historical accounts of how Catherine looked, and:

"The scale of the project was daunting, of course. How does a sculptor get the proportions just right on a 35-foot-tall body atop a 15-foot base? Ms. Flack worried about the curve in the eye sockets, the musculature of the mouth. She spent two months lowering the bosom. ''The face fought me the whole way,'' she said. ''I believe in energy webs, and I was picking up Catherine's energy. I knew there was a truer face.''

That face, once it had revealed itself to the sculptor, had full lips, a broad nose and long curls that could well be dreadlocks. ''It is a multiracial face,'' Ms. Flack said."


So the energy webs told her to make Catherine, who was not fair but certainly not a dusky lass either, more multiracial.

I wonder if this is the impetus for making his face look more Asiatic, as you point out Peter.

Because you know, you have to strike the right politically correct chords in statuary, rather than portray the truth.

If the Lincoln Memorial had been built today, he might have been dreadlocks.

Cheers,
Victoria

Kirby Olson said...

Sarah Silverman has a funny take on MLK. I suppose while everyone else monumentalizes the guy, Silverman decides to belittle him, but in funny ways:

http://www.youtube.
com/watch?v=b3RYrQSir7k

It probably doesn't have anything to do with the sculpture, but it provides a funny side view. It would be funny to think of a comic statue of MLK -- based on something from outta Silverman's imagination.

peter hoh said...

Victoria, as a wise person once observed, to err is human, but to really screw up, you need a committee.

My guess is that the committee never approved an Asian-looking King. Or if they did, they are complete idiots, which is never out of the range of possibility.

vbspurs said...

Kirby, no way! You read my mind. I was going to do a blogpost this weekend on this Sarah Silverman appearance on Leno.

Notice how Tommy Lee Jones, Al Gore's ex-roomie at Harvard, does one of those guilty white person "oh God, I shouldn't be laughing but can't believe she went there, damn that's funny" gestures on the sofa.

Cheers,
Victoria

Joe said...

My concern is that after we kill all the lawyers, we need easily toppled statues.

Simon said...

I join Mort's comment above, in word if not wholly in spirit (I think Mort and I might disagree over what would constitute the realization of, or even furtherance of, King's dream). But at any rate, I agree with his comment as it reads.

blake said...

What's funny is that YouTube clip (from "Jesus is Magic") is tagged as "Sarah Silverman and her racist jokes", when the jokes she makes (particularly about MLK) are simple absurdities.

"He was a litterbug."

This is probably as cutting as we can get.

I'm biased toward showing people in their best light. I want the Jefferson who wrote "We hold these truths to be self evident..." not the one who had sex with his slaves.

I don't want the socialist MLK, I want the "I have a dream" MLK. Mort calls it guilt, I call it enlightenment.

Revenant said...

The body language of the statue is one of resistance and rejection. A King statue should be more dynamic; it should look like King is about to speak.

rhhardin said...

You really don't like black people, do you? I mean that seriously -- everytime I see you talk about black people as a group, you say negative things. Feel free to correct me by pointing out that you have spoken with a majority of black people and that they are indeed racist.

Once more you are oppressed! Does it never end, with white people?!

Have you thought about attacking the media and your socalled black leaders that have been selected for you?

Have you considered that there is a single black community narrative?

Try not being so quiet about that, and see how oppressed you feel then, by comparison. I dare say you'd feel not very oppressed at all.

So far there's only a few and they're dismissed as off the reservation.

MLK's promised salvation though lies in that direction.

I think taking up, as blacks, a collection for poor whites, is the way to go, just on grammatical considerations, myself.

But feel free to choose something besides more complaining.

PatCA said...

MLK was eloquent and inspirational; Lincoln fought a war to keep the Union together and to end slavery. No comparison.

Why does MLK get to be gigantic, heroic, while FDR and Eleanor are "realistic," he in a wheelchair with his puppy, and Eleanor in a cloth coat instead of her trademark fur because of her obvious violation of animal rights?
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/local/longterm/tours/fdr/history.htm

I know, I know, I'm a racist.

Kirby Olson said...

Thanks for posting that link, Victoria. I hadn't seen that episode on Leno. Orange soda. I had to think about that one, but the others rang true, and showed a great ability to leap across categories and find commonalities. Brilliant!

That's art!

The Social Realist sculpture, however, is anything but.

Revenant said...

Have you considered that there is a single black community narrative?

What the hell? No there isn't. There are multiple narratives, just as there are for all the other subcultures within the larger American society. It is just that the one narrative of perpetual grievance gets most of the airplay, largely because it fits in with the narrative of the white liberals who comprise much of the media and education establishments.

bearbee said...

Several MLK monuments. While 3 are more animated, facial resemblances are not the best.

The Lincoln monument is unmistakeably Lincoln.

vbspurs said...

Bearbee, thanks for the monuments link.

The one where his silhouette is letting in light is magnificent, though the UT one I suppose is the closest.

But OMG...if you hadn't told me that was MLK Jr. in the Denver Colorado one (bottom-right), I never in a million years, would've guessed.

He looks like the offspring of Mao Tse-Tung and Anna May Wong.

Either Peter is on to something with this Asiatic thing, which goes far deeper than we can pick up on, or they're projecting him as a Maoist hero.

Yuck.

Cheers,
Victoria

ricpic said...

How about a statue of King failing to flag down a taxi?

In one fell thwoop that would give the White racists a titter and keep the noble put upon Blacks in their preferred state of high dudgeon.

jdeeripper said...

He does look Asian. Martin Luther Ching.

What's he holding in his left hand? Tootsie pop?

Forget Stalin, Mao, Kim, Saddam and the other big boys. If you want an even more invidious comparison to subvert this project how about The Lawgiver Statue from Planet of the Apes.

Or Lincoln from Tim Burton's mess.

$100 million waste of money. Money better spent fixing D.C. public schools. Maybe not. The P.G. county booshies would get all the money and spend it on McMansions and cars.

Kirby Olson said...

I've been insinuating for years that the cultural left of our country is Maoist. Is this not proof of the crypto-Maoism that is attempting to reconstitute a theory of a Cultural Revolution based on Cultural Studies?

SdB and Kristeva: Maoists.

Could it be that Cultural Studies is still Maoist without even any longer being aware of it?

David said...

The thing is, Abe in the statue is really, really white. Must have been a political statement, emphasizing his whiteness. Or bigness. Or seatedness. Have a seat, Abe, you big white dude.

And MLK would be standing. Isn't that the same as being erect? 28 feet of erect black man. Sounds threatening to me.

Or am I missing the point?

vbspurs said...

SdB and Kristeva: Maoists.

Yes, unfortunately, you got that right Kirby.

Only for America, it was Susan Sontag and bell hooks.

I Was A Maoist Intellectual

I was a Maoist intellectual in the music industry
I always knew that I could seize the world's imagination
And show the possibilities for transformation
I saw a nation in decay, but also a solution:Permanent cultural revolution
Whenever I played my protest songs the press applauded me
Rolled out the red carpet, parted the Red Sea
But the petit bourgeois philistines stayed away
They preferred their artists to have nothing to say

How did I pass my time on earth? Now it can be revealed:
I was a Maoist intellectual in the entertainment field

I showed the people how they lived and told them it was bad
Showed them the insanity inside the bureaucrat
And the archetypes and stereotypes that were my stock in trade
Toppled all the ivory towers that privilege had made
Though I tried to change your mind I never tried your patience
All I tried to do was to point out your exploitation
But the powers that be took this to be a personal insult
And refused to help me build my personality cult

How did I pass my time an earth, what on earth got into me?
I was a Maoist intellectual in the music industry

I left the normal world behind and started living in
A hinterland between dissolution and self discipline
I burned the midnight oil to build my way of seeing
A miner at the coal face of meaning
The rich despised the songs I wrote which told the poor their worth
Told the shy to speak and told the meek to take the earth
But my downfall came from being three things the working classes hated:
Agitated, organised and over-educated

How did I pass my time on earth, how did I bear witness?
As a Maoist intellectual in the entertainment business
And how was I treated in this world and in this industry7
As a Maoist intellectual in a business would be

I became a hotel doorman, I stood there on the doormat
Clutching my forgotten discs in their forgotten format
Trying to hand them out to all the stars who sauntered in
The ones who hadn't been like me, who hadn't lived in vain
I gave up ideology the day I lost my looks
I never found a publisher for my little red books
When I died the energy released by my frustration
Was nearly enough for re-incarnation

But if I could live my life again the last thing that I'd be
Is a Maoist intellectual in the music industry
No if I could live my life again I think I'd like to be
The man whose job is to stop the men who think like me
Yeah if l could live my life again that'd be the thing to be
The man who plots the stumbling blocks
In the lives of the likes of me!


From here.

Cheers,
Victoria

Theo Boehm said...
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Kirby Olson said...

I hadn't heard of Momus. Shall google.

I still think SdB and Kristeva are bigger names to conjure with than bell hooks or Mrs. Sunday.

If you look through the citations at the Modern Language Association bibliography, scholars prefer to quote SdB and Kristeva.

But few quote Kristeva in her most recent incarnation where she now thinks de Gaulle was the cat's meow, after all.

She and her husband Sollers still believe they should have affairs with the younger up and coming, and so in that sense they are still like Sartre and SdB.

There is a neat book by one of the young women that SdB and Sartre had sex with. She was a Jewish teenager in Paris -- about 16 -- they threw her into Occupied Paris' streets when they were done with her.

Was her name Jacqueline Lambda? I have the book in my office. It's called A Shameful Affair, or something like that. It will remind you of the Clintons, except in this case the female was only 16. She had been one of SdB's philosophy students.

Mortimer Brezny said...

The face looks to be more of Asian heritage than African.

I hope you realize that this is absolutely ridiculous. There are plenty of Africans who look Asian, skin color and hair texture aside, because Asians, ahem, are originally from Africa.