четверг, 14 января 2010 г.

Norberto Bobbio - Old Age and Other Essays

Old Age and Other Essays

by Norberto Bobbio

This book by one of Italy's oldest and wisest intellectuals is a philosophical and personal meditation on ageing. The question of old age has preoccupied writers from Cicero to Améry, but in this volume Norberto Bobbio produces an account that is specific to our times. Born in 1909, Bobbio has lived through the major events of the past century, and his experiences of Fascism, Communism and the Cold War lend his reflections a melancholy that distinguishes them from earlier eulogies on old age and death. Bobbio's conclusions are often sobering, yet his investigation into memory and mortality is written with both humour and emotion. In the opening chapter, Bobbio reassesses the notion of progress from the perspective of an old man. Arguing for an understanding of historical change as the transfer between generations, Bobbio explains how the elderly are increasingly marginalized in contemporary society. Referring to the traditional idea of old age as the 'age of wisdom', Bobbio argues that our ever-accelerating technological progress has dramatically shifted the power of knowledge from old to young. This discussion of old age as a social problem is accompanied by a reflection on old age as a personal predicament. In his elegant and lucid prose, Bobbio confronts the facts of decrepitude and death. In taking stock of his life, he argues once again for the importance of democracy and human rights. This is a beautifully written book that will be of great interest to the academic and general reader alike. Its intellectual content renders it of particular value to students in the fields of philosophy, politics and the social sciences.

суббота, 9 января 2010 г.

Музей Невинности - Орхан Памук

Музей Невинности

Орхан Памук

Музей Невинности», новый роман самого известного турецкого писателя наших дней, заставляет переоценить все суждения не только о любви, но и о женитьбе, дружбе, плотской страсти, чести, семье и счастье …Это история вступающего в пору зрелости Кемаля и красавицы Фюсун, начавшаяся весенним днем 1975 года и обернувшаяся годами испытаний. Роман, в котором время, сотканное из мгновений блаженства и печали, прорывается к неустранимой в памяти и сохраняемой ею силе сбывшегося, которая и дарует человеку чувство обретения по-настоящему прожитой жизни.«Памук – эпохальный и значимый писатель, право обладать которым было бы честью и для Запада, и для Востока…»New York TimesОрхан Памук — лауреат Нобелевской премии по литературе 2006 года. За роман «Меня зовут красный» в 2003 году писатель был также удостоен престижной литературной премии IMPAC (Дублин). Произведения Орхана Памука переведены более чем на пятьдесят языков.

понедельник, 7 декабря 2009 г.

суббота, 21 ноября 2009 г.

Excrement in the Late Middle Ages: Sacred Filth and Chaucer's Fecopoetics

Excrement in the Late Middle Ages: Sacred Filth and Chaucer's Fecopoetics (The New Middle Ages)

By Susan Signe Morrison

This interdisciplinary book integrates the historical practices regarding material excrement and its symbolic representation, with special focus on fecopoetics and Chaucer’s literary agenda. Filth in all its manifestations—material (including privies, dung on fields, and as alchemical ingredient), symbolic (sin, misogynist slander, and theological wrestling with the problem of filth in sacred contexts) and linguistic (a semantic range including dirt and dung)—helps us to see how excrement is vital to understanding the Middle Ages. Applying fecal theories to late medieval culture, Morrison concludes by proposing Waste Studies as a new field of ethical and moral criticism for literary scholars.

среда, 4 ноября 2009 г.

Chuck Palahniuk - Pygmy


By Chuck Palahniuk
"What will he think of next?" asked the flabbergasted critic from the New York Times Book Review. Indeed, while several reviewers praised the novel as a darkly humorous commentary on American society, most agreed it contained serious flaws. Palahniuk's tenth novel seems designed to flummox readers with its extreme profanity, graphic sexual violence involving minors, and portrayal of adults as either brainless buffoons or shameless perverts. Critics were also split on the author's repeated use of an undefined syntax, reminiscent of pidgin English, throughout. What readers, after all, will have the patience to read sentences like, "Revered soon dying mother, distribute you ammunitions correct for Croatia-made forty-five-caliber, long-piston-stroke APS assault rifle"? Overall, critics acknowledged that diehard Palahniuk fans might savor Pygmy but that most folks would find it too stomach-turning.

пятница, 16 октября 2009 г.

Dan Brown - The Lost Symbol

The Lost Symbol

by Dan Brown

Let's start with the question every Dan Brown fan wants answered: Is The Lost Symbol as good as The Da Vinci Code? Simply put, yes. Brown has mastered the art of blending nail-biting suspense with random arcana (from pop science to religion), and The Lost Symbol is an enthralling mix. And what a dazzling accomplishment that is, considering that rabid fans and skeptics alike are scrutinizing every word.
The Lost Symbol begins with an ancient ritual, a shadowy enclave, and of course, a secret. Readers know they are in Dan Brown territory when, by the end of the first chapter, a secret within a secret is revealed. To tell too much would ruin the fun of reading this delicious thriller, so you will find no spoilers here. Suffice it to say that as with many series featuring a recurring character, there is a bit of a formula at work (one that fans will love). Again, brilliant Harvard professor Robert Langdon finds himself in a predicament that requires his vast knowledge of symbology and superior problem-solving skills to save the day. The setting, unlike other Robert Langdon novels, is stateside, and in Brown's hands Washington D.C. is as fascinating as Paris or Vatican City (note to the D.C. tourism board: get your "Lost Symbol" tour in order). And, as with other Dan Brown books, the pace is relentless, the revelations many, and there is an endless parade of intriguing factoids that will make you feel like you are spending the afternoon with Robert Langdon and the guys from Mythbusters.
Nothing is as it seems in a Robert Langdon novel, and The Lost Symbol itself is no exception--a page-turner to be sure, but Brown also challenges his fans to open their minds to new information. Skeptical? Imagine how many other thrillers would spawn millions of Google searches for noetic science, superstring theory, and Apotheosis of Washington. The Lost Symbol is brain candy of the best sort--just make sure to set aside time to enjoy your meal. --Daphne Durham

среда, 14 октября 2009 г.

Умберто Эко - Таинственное пламя царицы Лоаны

Умберто Эко

Таинственное пламя царицы Лоаны

Умберто Эко, крупнейший современный писатель, ученый-медиевист, семиотик, специалист по массовой культуре, автор интеллектуального бестселлера "Имя розы" (1980), представляет нам роман совершенно нового типа. Текст в нем опирается на иллюстрации, причем каждая иллюстрация - это цитата, извлеченная из контекста не только личной истории героя, но и истории целого поколения. Лопнувший кровеносный сосуд, пораженный участок мозга, начисто стертая личная память. О своем прошлом шестидесятилетний торговец антикварными книгами Джамбаттиста Бодони не помнит ничего. Он даже забыл свое имя. Но сокровищница "бумажной" памяти остается неразграбленной, через нее и лежит путь к себе - через образы и сюжеты, средневековые трактаты и повести для подростков, старые пластинки и программы радиопередач, школьные сочинения и книжки комиксов, - туда, где брезжит таинственное пламя царицы Лоаны.