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David Brian Howard


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The Day of the Dogs David Brian Howard

Differentia Press Santa Maria, CA


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CONTENTS

Introduction

A Linguistic Analysis of a Statement by Theodor W. Adorno

4

Chapter 1

The End of the Story

8

Chapter 2

Fire and Ice; Horses and Dogs

63

Chapter 3

Frozen Glances in a Mirror

211

Chapter 4

Black Nights Without Redemption

378

Conclusion

Fin-de-Partie

433


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Holy Sonnets. XIV Take me to you, imprison me, for I, Except you enthrall me, never shall be free, Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me. (John Donne (E.K. Chambers, editor), Poems of John Donne: Volume 1. London: Lawrence & Bulletin, 1896: 165)

“Dogs – I’ll grant you dogs – But a horse, That’s an animal!” (Louis Zhukofsky, “A”. Berkeley, Los Angeles and London: University of California Press, 1978: 28.)

“The Consul stood up and suddenly declaimed to the dog: ‘Yet this day, pichicho, shalt thou be with me in – ‘ But the dog hopped away in terror on three legs and slunk under the door.” (Malcolm Lowry, Under the Volcano. Harmondsworth,Middlesex: Penguin Books, 1963: 232.)


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Introduction: A Linguistic Analysis of a Statement by Theodor W. Adorno

The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole. The False Present Is The Whole.

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The Whole Is The False. The Whole Is The False. The Whole Is The False. The Whole Is The False. The Whole Is The False.

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“A sentence is a form of power. A word is a riddle. A letter is a traveler. He can leave the sentence. In his stead comes another. A G is replaced by P, so Gott becomes Pott. A P is exchanged with a G, so your record [Platte] becomes a smooth disc [Glatte Scheibe]….You cross the border between l and r, between a long and short vowel, between ō and e. The Lord [der Herr] is no hell [Hōlle]. And he doesn’t go there. But the Lord [der Herr] hears what has happened in Hell [der Hōlle]. I suddenly remember the Japanese word Jigokumimi, which translates literally as “the hearing of hell” [das Hōren der Hōllen]. It means someone who is hard of hearing, who can hear well only when someone speaks badly of him. So clear hearing [Hellhōrikeit] also takes you to hell. The punishment occurs because of the confusion between Hōlle and Hell. Catholic grammar waits eagerly for punishment and deliberately plays the wicked child.” (Yoko Tawada, quoted in Marjorie Perloff, unoriginal genius: poetry by other means in the new century. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 2010: 144.)


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(David Brian Howard, “Pyx I,” 1980/1.)

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Chapter One: The End of the Story “Thus in the beginning all the World was America, and more so than that is now; for no such thing as Money was anywhere known.” (John Locke, Second Treatise, Chapter 16, Section 49: http://presspubs.uchicago.edu/founders/documents/vlchl6s3.html)

“[…] something hangs between us older and deeper than ourselves like a translucent curtain, a sheet of water a dusty window the irreducible, incomplete connection between the dead and the living or between man and woman in this savagely fathered and unmothered world.” (Adrienne Rich, from The Face of a Doorframe, quoted in Jed Resula, Modernism and the Poetic Inspiration: The Shadow Mouth. New York, NY: Palgrave MacMillan, 2009: 157.)

“I want you to be madly loved.” (André Breton (Mary Ann Caws, Translator), Mad Love. Omaha: University of Nebraska Press, 1987: 119.)

“The knight departing for new adventures offends his lady yet she has nothing but contempt for him if he remains at her feet. This is the torture of impossible love …” (Simnoe de Beauvoir, The Second Sex, in Anne Carson, Eros: The Bittersweet. Champaign and London: Dalkey Archive Press, 2009: 11.)

“Are you not weary of ardent ways? / Tell no more of enchanted days.” (James Joyce quoted in, Shelly Brivic, Joyce Through Lacan and Žižek: Explorations. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2008: 28.)


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“…the art of storytelling is coming to an end….It is as if something that seemed inalienable to us, the securest among our possessions, were taken from us: the ability to exchange experiences.” (Walter Benjamin, The Storyteller, quoted in Steven Helmling, Adorno’s Poetics of Critique. London and New York: Continuum Publishing, 2009: 138.)

“What’s the modern novel […] doing now? Once more it’s a narrative in search of its own coherence. Once more it’s the impossible ordering of disparate fragments whose blurred outlines don’t fit together. And once more there’s the desperate temptation to create a fabric as solid as bronze….Yes, but what’s happening in this fabric, the text, is that it has itself become a battlefield and stake. Instead of advancing like some blind justice obeying a divine law, deliberately ignoring all the problems that the traditional novel disguises and denies (the present moment, for instance), the text is determined on the contrary to expose publicly and stage accurately the multiple impossibilities with which it is contending and of which it is constructed.” (Alain Robbe-Grillet (Translated by Jo Levy), Ghosts in the Mirror. New York: Grove Weidenfeld, 1991: 21.)

“The book I would like to read now is a novel in which you sense the story arriving like stillvague thunder, the historical story along with the individual’s story, a novel that gives the sense of living through an upheaval that still has no name, has not yet taken shape …” (Italo Calvino (William Weaver, Translator), If on a winter’s night a traveler. New York and London: Harcourt Inc., 1981: 72.)

“The mirroring body defines itself in acts of consumption. The body is both instrument and object of consuming: the body is used to consume, and consumption enhances the body: feeing it, clothing it, grooming it, and, in the consumption of medical services, curing it. This body-self is called mirroring because consumption attempts to recreate the body in the image of other bodies: more stylish and healthier bodies. The primary sense is visual: the body sees an image, idealizes it, and seeks to become the image of that image. The mirroring body thus attempts to make itself exactly what the popular phrase calls “the picture of health.”” (Arthur W. Frank, The Wounded Storyteller: Body, Illness, and Ethics. Chicago & London: The University of Chicago Press, 1995: 43-44.)


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“To be rocked between extremes: This is the privilege of ships, and this is what Baudelaire longed for. The ships emerge at the site of the profound, secret, and paradoxical image of his dreams: the vision of being supported and sheltered by greatness. “These beautiful big ships that lie on the still water imperceptibly rocking, these strong ships that look so idle and so nostalgic—are they not asking us in a mute language: When do we set sail for happiness?” The ships combine airy casualness with readiness for utmost exertion. This gives them a secret significance. There is a special constellation in which greatness and indolence meet in human beings, too. This constellation governed Baudelaire’s life. He deciphered it and called it “modernity.”” (Walter Benjamin, “The Paris of the Second Empire in Baudelaire,” quoted in (Michael W. Jennings and Howard Eiland, Editors) (Translated by Edmund Jephcott and Others), Walter Benjamin, Selected Writings, Volume 4, 19381940. Cambridge and London: The Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press, 2003: 59.)

“Perspectives must be fashioned that displace and estrange the world, reveal it to be, with its rifts and crevices, as indigent and distorted as it will appear one day in the messianic light. To gain such perspectives without velleity or violence, entirely from felt contact with its objects— this alone is the task of thought.” (Theodor W. Adorno (Translated by E.F.N. Jephcott), Minima Moralia: Reflections on a Damaged Life. London and New York: Verso, 2005: 247.)

“What idea?” The rocking became worse and he watched her follow her glass from side to side before she was able to take a sip. “Destruction,” she said. On one of the screens he saw figures descending a vertical surface. It took him a moment to understand that they were rappelling down the façade of the building just ahead, where the market tickers were located. “You know what anarchists have always believed.” “Yes.” “Tell me,” she said. “The urge to destroy is a creative urge.” “This is also the hallmark of capitalist thought. Enforced destruction. Old industries have to be harshly eliminated. New markets have to be forcibly claimed. Old markets have to be reexploited. Destroy the past, make the future.”


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(Don De Lillo, Cosmopolis. New York, London, Toronto, and Sydney: Scribner, 2004: 92-93.)

“Aby Warburg argues in the unpublished introduction to his Mnemosyne Atlas, “… it is in the area of orgiastic mass seizure that one should look for the mint that stamps the expression of extreme emotional seizure on the memory with such intensity that the engrams of that experience of suffering live on, an inheritance preserved in the memory.”” (quoted in Benjamin H.D. Buchloh, “Atlas/Archive,” Alex Coles (ed.) The Optic of Walter Benjamin Volume 3 de-, dis-, ex-. London: Black Dog Publishing Limited, 1999: 17.)

“Creativity and memory stand in tension then, but a tension born of a necessary, fateful, and possibly fruitful relation. Each constrains the other, but in doing so, each strengthens the other by providing it with new material. Each creation is another brick in the wall. But each piece of memory provides a new tabula non rasa over which new interpretations can be written. Chains of causality are not be cast aside, but are to be part of the dance. It is actually better to be partly chained than it is to be either wholly chained or wholly unchained. This pattern of mutual discipline and strengthening of different elements of the psyche is typically Nietzschean. To him it presents, not a paradox, but a prospect to be welcomed: “I have discovered for myself that the human and animal past, indeed the whole primal age and past of all sentient being continues in me to invent, to love, to hate, to infer. I suddenly woke up in the midst of this dream, but only to the consciousness that I am still dreaming and that I must go on dreaming lest I perish—as a somnambulist must go on dreaming lest he fall.” (Joshua Foa Dienstag, Dancing in Chains: Narrative and Memory in Political Theory. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2005: 105.)

“But are the discoveries of infancy like those made in a laboratory, where one finds what one will? Was it, then, only when I became an adult that I started to fear and grew the third leg? Can I, as an adult, have the childlike courage to lose myself? to lose oneself is to go looking with no sense of what to do with what you might find. The two walking feet minus that extra third one that holds a person down. And I want to be held down. I don’t know what to do with the horrifying freedom that can destroy me. But while I was held down, was I happy? Or was there—and there was—an uncanny, restless something in my happy prison routine? Or was there—and there was—that throbbing something to which I was so accustomed that I thought throbbing was the same as being a person? Isn’t that it? yes, that too…that too…” (Clarice Lispector (Translated by Ronald W. Sousa), The Passion According to G.H. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1988: 5-6.)


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“[Woman’s] entry into a dominant scopic economy signifies, again, her consignment to passivity: she is to be the beautiful object of contemplation. While her body finds itself thus eroticized, and called to a double movement of exhibition and of chaste retreat in order to stimulate the drives of the “subject,” her sexual organ represents the horror of nothing to see….This organ which has nothing to show for itself also lacks a form of its own. And if woman takes pleasure precisely from this incompleteness of form which allows her organ to touch itself over and over again, indefinitely, by itself, that pleasure is denied by a civilization that privileges phallomorphism.” (Luce Irigaray, Speculum of the Other Woman, (Translated by Gillian C. Gill), quoted in C. W. Maggie Kim, Susan M. St. Ville, and Susan M. Simonaitis, Transfigurations: Theology and the French Feminists. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2002: 160.)

“To be born of a mother, to be bodily born of a body, to be oneself a body, with ribs that expand when one breathes, a body with fingers capable of grasping an iron balustrade, to enfold the dead with the living—eternal interchange of the animate and inanimate, each swathing the other in infinite transparency: yes, to be born and then to go walking through the world and its gentle streets, never to lose the mother’s hand in which the child’s hand lies sheltered—this most natural happiness of human existence was very clear to him as he stood on his balcony affixed to a house wall, with the sheltering house at his back, looking down on the dark grass and the dark trees, […], a strip of houses between the living and the living, between growth and growth, a strip of stone and wood, dead and man-made, yet a home.” (Herman Broch (Translated by Ralph Manheim), The Guiltless. Evanston, IL: Marlboro Press, 2000: 57.)

“…”cross over,” kicking a hole out of the old boundaries of the self and slipping under or over, dragging the old skin along, stumbling over it. It hampers her movement in the new territory, dragging the ghost of the past with her. It is a dry birth, a breech birth, a screaming birth, one that fights her every inch of the way.” (Gloria Anzaldúa, Borderlands, quoted in Roger Bromley, “A Concluding Essay: Narratives for a New Belonging – Writing in the Borderlands,” in John C. Hawley, Cross-Addressing: Resistance Literature and Cultural Borders. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1996: 295.)

“Even where love has run thin


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the child’s soul musters strength… ..the rush of purpose to make a life worth living past abandonment building the layers up again over the torn hole.” (Adrienne Rich, “Meditations for a Savage Child,” http://self-injury.net/media/quotes/quote/11374-adrienne-richmeditations-savage-child)

“As a child I felt in my heart two contradictory feelings, the horror of life and the ecstasy of life.” (Charles Baudelaire cited in Georges Bataille (trans. by Alastair Hamilton), Literature and Evil. New York: Urizen Books, 1973: 30-31.)

“Why, with your infernal enchantments, have you torn from me the tranquility of my early life…The sun and the moon shone for me without artifice; I awoke with gentle thoughts, and at dawn I folded my leaves to say my prayers. I saw nothing evil, for I had no eyes; I heard nothing evil, for I had no ears; but I shall have my vengeance!” (Discourse of the Mandrake, in Elizabeth of Egypt, by Achim Von Arnum, quoted in Julio Cortazar (Translated by Gregory Rabassa), Hopscotch. New York: Book of the Month Club Edition, 1995: 507.)

“For heaven shall be folded up like a scroll, and now it is stretched over us like a skin. For your divine scripture is of all the more sublime authority because those mortals, through whom you gave it to us, have died their deaths. And you know Lord, you know how you clothed men with skins when their sin became mortal. And so you have like a skin stretched out the firmament of your book, that is, your wrds which so well agree together, and which through the agency of mortal men, you have placed above us …. I do not know, Lord, I do not know any writings so pure, so apt to persuade me to confess, to bow my neck to your yoke and to take service with you for nothing.” (St. Augustine, Confessions, quoted in Gerald Peters, The Mutilating God: Authorship and Authority in the Narrative of Conversion. Amherst, MA: The University of Massachesetts Press, Amherst, 1991: 6.)


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“For the body to breathe, a layer must be peeled away.” (Michael Palmer, “Recursus,” in Michael Palmer, At Passages. New York: New Directions Publishing, 1995: 57.)

The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house All that cold, cold, wet day.” “

(Dr. Seuss, The Cat in the Hat. New York: Random House, 1957: 1.)

“Look at the cat. Look at what the cat saw. Look at what the cat thought. Look at what it was. Finally, finally, there wasn’t a symbol, there was the “thing,” the orgiastic thing. Those who were climbing were on the verge of truth. Nebuchadnezzar. They seemed like twenty Nebuchadnezzars. And in the night they separated. They are waiting for us. It was an absence—a voyage outside of time.” (Clarice Lispector, “Where you were at Night,” in Clarice Lispector (Translated by Alexis Levitin), Soulstorm: Stories by Clarice Lispector. New York: A New Directions Book, 1989: 115.)

“Dear little child, I beg of you, / Pray for the little hunchback too.” (Walter Benjamin, (Howard Eiland, trans.), Berlin Childhood around 1900. Cambridge and London: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2006: 122.)

“At that moment, the child was invaded, as it were, by a disorderly troop of memories of reading and stories he had heard: for example, that the room of Bernadette Soubiroux, at the hour of her death, was full of the scent of invisible violets. He therefore instinctively sniffed, but did not recognize the odor that is said to be the odor of sanctity. God was forgetting His servant. And a good thing too. In the first place, you shouldn’t waste the scent of flowers on the bed of a dead old maid; and furthermore, you should fear to sow panic in the souls of children.”


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(Jean Genet (Translated by Bernard Frechtman), Our Lady of The Flowers. New York: Grove Press, Inc., 1963: 303.)

“WHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL THE TROUTH TO YOU I TELL I LIVED WITH ME DEAR FRENS A TOME THEY KEAP A LITTLE COW AND I CANNOT TELL YOU HOW I IN JOYED A RON TO FICH HER HOME.” (Gertrude Jekyll, “Old West Surrey,” University of Victoria Archives: Victoria, British Columbia, 1904.)

“A kindlier and more receptive sentiment toward mankind is stirring in the hearts of men. Some broader era seems to encompass now the Era of Expansion. Instead of even greater wealth amassed from new-discovered mines or deserts made to bloom, that world-old bitterness may the ameliorating time-to-come perhaps assuage?—bitterness of human strife, evil of greed and the pride of power opposed by hate and envy. That’s if our homes are kept inviolate. (Did not we find that the wretchedness—political and economic—of the Middle Ages was due to the wretchedness of its living?) How may we, beset with more insidious trials, hope to train the necessary citizenship for social right, if to our very firesides creeps the noxious saturation of the pride of life? This quite changes all the gracious emanation of the home. It over-masters – like gas frenzy-breeding! effecting fierce absorption, a consuming haste, that crowds aside the parents’ priceless privilege, which is to impress upon young minds the gospel that success can gladden each of us only as he loves his neighbor as himself.” (Fred S. Miller, Fighting Modern Evils That Destroy Our Homes: Exposing the Snares and Pitfalls of the Social World. L.W. Walter: 1913: 39.)


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“Task of childhood: to bring the new world into the realm of the symbolic. The child can do what an adult is totally incapable of doing: recognize the new once again. Railway engines already have the character of symbols for us because we saw them in our childhood. For our children – of which we ourselves see only the new, elegant, slick side – have this character…for every truly natural formation [Naturgestalt] – and basically, technology is one such – there are corresponding new images. Each generation of children discovers these new images to incorporate them into mankind’s treasury of images.” (Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project, quoted in Helga Geyer-Ryan, Fables of Desire: Studies in the Ethics of Art and Gender. Cambridge: Polity Press, 1994: 16.)

“Buster Bulldozer rolled down the road. His new red paint shone in the sunlight. And he made a glorious racket, clanking along on his caterpillar treads. He was just itching to find a big bulldozer-size job. As he rolled along, Buster sang, “Clankety clank! Clankety clank! I’m very big and strong. Clankety clank! Clankety clank! Nobody else Can sing my working song.” (Catherine Danner, Buster Bulldozer. Racine, Wisconsin: Whitman Publishing Company, 1952: 1.)


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“Vandover was a good little boy. Every night he said his prayers, going down on his huge knees at the side of his bed. To the Lord’s Prayer he added various editions of his own. He prayed that he might be a good boy and live a long time and go to Heaven when he died and see his mother; that the next Saturday might be sunny all day long, and that the end of the world might not come while he was alive.” (Frank Norris, Vandover and the Brute. Middlesex: The Echo Library, 2006: 6.)

“Walter Benjamin begins his reminiscences, A Berlin Childhood around 1900, with the following passage: Not to find one’s way about in a city is of little interest. But to lose one’s way in a city, as one loses one’s way in a forest, requires practice. For this the street names must speak to one like the snapping of dry twigs, and the narrow streets of the city center must reflect the time of day as clearly as a mountain valley. I learned this art late in life: it fulfilled the dreams whose first traces were the labyrinths on the blotters on my exercise-books. No, not the first, for even before these there had been another which outlasted them. The way into this labyrinth, which did not lack its Ariadne, led over the Bendler Bridge, whose gentle arch was my first hillside. Not far from its foot lay the goal: Friedrich Wilhelm and Queen Luise. They towered up from their round pedestals among the flower beds as if spellbound by magic curves that a watercourse had inscribed before them in the sand. More pedestals, because what was happening upon them, though not clear to me, was nearer in space. That there was something special about this labyrinth I have since recognized in the wide, banal forecourt, which in no way revealed that here, only a few steps from the avenue for the droshkies and carriages, sleeps the strangest area of the park. I already had an inkling of this very early. Here or not far from here must have been the bed of that Ariadne in whose proximity I first grasped, never to forget it, what only came to me as a word: love.” (Peter Szondi (trans. by Harvey Mendelsohn), On Textual Understanding and Other Essays, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1986: 146.)

“Vancouver is not part of Canada. Not really. There’s a genuine sense of disconnection from the Rest of Canada that we feel here. While Ontario looms large in the minds of most other Canadians, said province simply doesn’t enter our minds from one week to the next. […] There’s nothing unpatriotic about Vancouver’s psychic disconnection from the Rest of Canada—it’s a reality fostered by Vancouver’s distance from Canada’s centre and from a


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tradition of abandoning that very centre to try something new. To ignore these factors would be foolish. In a thousand years, Canada won’t be the same country it is now, nor will it probably be the same in five hundred, a hundred, fifty or even ten. My own hunch is that Vancouver will eventually evolve into a city state going as far north as Whistler, as far east as the Fraser Canyon and then to the U.S. border.” (Douglas Coupland, City of Glass: Douglas Coupland’s Vancouver. Vancouver: Douglas & McIntyre, 2009: 106107.)

“There were roses on the seat between Jack and Jackie. The car’s interior was a nice light blue. The man was so close he could have spoken to them. He stood at curbside applauding. A woman called out to the car, “Hey we want to take your picture.” The President looked extremely puzzled, head leaning left. The man stood applauding, already deep in chaos, looking at crumpled bodies, a sense of guns coming out. Put me on, Bill. Put me on. Bobby W. Haggis, riding escort, left rear, knew he was hearing gunfire. There was a woman taking a picture and another woman about twenty feet behind her taking the same picture, only with the first woman in it. He couldn’t tell where the shots were coming from, two shots, but he knew someone was hit in the car. A man threw his kid to the ground and fell on him. That’s a vet, Hargis had time to think, with the Governor, Connally, kind of sliding down in the jump seat and his wife taking him in, gathering the man in. Haggis turned right just after noticing a girl in a pretty coat running across the lawn toward the President’s car. He turned his body right, keeping the motorcycle headed west on Elm, and then the blood and matter, the unforgettable thing, the sleet of bone and blood and tissue struck him in the face. He thought he’d been shot. The stuff hit him like a spray of buckshot and he heard it ping and spatter on his helmet. People were down on the grass. He kept his mouth closed tight so the fluid would not ooze in.” (Don DeLillo, Libra. New York: Penguin, 1988: 398-399.)

“For a moment I had angrily wondered who the stranger was who had just upset me. But the stranger was myself, it was the child I was then, whom the book had just brought back to life within me, knowing nothing of me except this child.” (Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time, quoted in Michael Wood, “Proust: The Music of Memory,” quoted in (eds. Susannah Radstone and Bill Scharz), Memory: Histories, Theories, Debates. New York: Fordham University Press, 2010: 118.)


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“As Ernest Schachtel summarized it, much adult memory does indeed frame the past according to the familiar milestones and signposts provided by the culture at large. In his essay “On Memory and Childhood Amnesia” […] Schachtel wrote: ‘The milestones are the measurements of time, the months and years, the empty count of time gone by, so many years spent there, moving from one place to another, so many birthdays, and so forth. The signposts represent the outstanding events to which they point – entering college, the first job, marriage, birth of children, buying a house, a family celebration, a trip … [But] even theses [milestones and] signposts themselves do not indicate the really significant moments in a person’s life; rather they point to the events that are conventionally supposed to be significant, the clichés which society has come to consider the main stations of life.’ This, it is true, is the way a great deal of personal remembering takes place, bur for our purposes it is not compelling enough to merit much attention.” (David Gross, Lost Time: On Remembering and Forgetting in Late Modern Culture. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2000: 136.)

“Eight years old, and the strangest experience was the sewing kit in a shop window on the way to school; it stood between wool and quilt next to feminine needlework, which didn’t mean anything to me. But on the sewing box something was painted, with many color dots and spots on the smooth surface, as if the image were coagulated. It showed a cabin, lots of snow and a moon high and yellow on a blue winter sky, in the windows of the cabin glowed a red light … I have never forgotten the red window.” (Ernst Bloch, Traces, quoted in (Jamie Owen Daniel and Tom Moylan, Editors), Not Yet: Reconsidering Ernst Bloch. London and New York: Verso, 1997: 203.)

“It may be indeed questioned whether we have any memories at all from our childhood: memories relating to our childhood may be all that we possess. Our childhood memories show us our earliest years not as they were but as they appeared at the later periods when the memories were aroused. In these periods of arousal, the childhood memories did not, as people are accustomed to say, emerge, they were formed at that time. And a number of motives, with no concern for historical accuracy, had a part in forming them, as well as in the selection of the memories themselves.” (Sigmund Freud, The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud: Volume 3, cited in Harrison: The Lure of Dreams: Sigmund Freud and the Construction of Modernity. London and New York: Routledge, 1996: 103.)


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“The subject “is” only insofar as the Thing (the Kantian Thing in it-self as well as the Freudian impossible-incestuous object, das Ding) is sacrificed, “primordially repressed.” … This “primordial repression” introduces a fundamental imbalance in the universe: the symbolically structured universe we live in is organized around a void, an impossibility (inaccessibility of the Thing in itself). The Lacanian notion of the split subject is to be conceived against this background: the subject can never fully “become himself,” he can never fully realize himself, he only ex-sists as the void of a distance from the Thing.” (Slavoj Žižek, Enjoy Your Symptom! Jacques Lacan in Hollywood and Out, quoted in Cary Wolfe, Animal Rites: American Culture, the Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 2003: 109-110.)

“The question of choice and an ethical dimension to allegory is present in Benjamin’s account. Allegory takes us beyond the symbol, but in itself this is not sufficient. Allegory demystifies the symbol, he argues, and it better approximates the truth of a fallen world be recognizing the disarticulation of consciousness and physis. The symbol mistakenly takes truths as immediately present and plenitudinous; for allegory, they are acknowledged as removed and negative. Yet, despite this promise of demystification, Benjamin suggests that allegory too is limited: it fetishizes the fragment and retreats to inwardness in which the allegorist contemplates, and grieves over, a world devoid of meaning. Unhindered negativity—even at its most dynamic—leads only to “melancholic immersion,” and Benjamin argues that just as “those who lose their footing turn somersaults in their fall, so would the allegorical intention fall from emblem to emblem down into the dizziness of its bottomless depths.” (Gail Day, Dialectical Passions: Negation in Postwar Art Theory. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 2011: 171.)

“The modern spirit is vivisective. Vivisection itself is the most modern process one can conceive. The ancient spirit is accepted phenomena with a bad grace. The ancient method investigated law with the lantern of justice, morality with the lantern of revelation, art with the lantern of tradition … The modern method examines its territory by the light of day … All modern method examines its territory by the light of day … All modern political and religious criticism dispenses with the presumptive States, [and] presumptive Redeemers and Churches … It examines the entire community in action and reconstructs the spectacle of redemption. If you were an esthetic philosopher you would take note of all my vagaries because here you have the spectacle of the esthetic instinct in action.” (John J. Slocum and Herbert Cahoon (eds.), James Joyce, Stephen Hero. New York: New Directions, 1963: 185186.)


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“I think one ought to read nothing but books that bite and sting. If the book we are reading does not wake us up with the blow of the fist against the skull, then why are we reading that book? So that it will make us happy? … No, we need books that affect us like a misfortune, that cause us lots of pain, like the death of someone whome we loved better than ourselves, as if we were cast out in the forests, cut off from all human beings, like a suicide; a book must be the axe for the frozen sea in us.” (Franz Kafka quoted in Gerhard Richter (Editor), Language Without Soil: Adorno and Late Philosophical Modernity. New York, NY: Fordham University Press, 2010: 5.)

“Of bodies changes to other forms I tell; You Gods, who have yourselves wrought every change, Inspire my enterprise and lead my lay In one continuous song from nature’s first Remote beginnings to our modern times.” (Ovid, Metamophoses, quoted in Elaine Fantham, Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004: 5.)

“The humans’re both dogs and skulls. Both humans and dogs need to eat and feel heat. The skulls don’t need either. Humandogs eat and feel heat in a kitchen. This kitchen is a den of iniquity. Whereas a den is the province of men, women control kitsch but there are no women among the human-dogs or maybe the humandog whose face is anonymously or nauseously also approaching-skull (simultaneously either-or life and death) is male and or female and it no longer matters. Since a broom’s sweeping hisandorher bald pate, heandorhshe is a which. The dog who stands up like a man stares at the broom and behind him a male skull laughs, but at what is he laughing? Another human dog pisses on the floor because they’re bums pissing in concrete doorways. This isn’t scenes of war this is war.” (Kathy Acker, Don Quixote: which was a dream. New York, NY: Grove Press, 1986: 75.)

“If Man becomes an animal again, then his arts, his loves and his play must also become purely “natural” again … Men would construct their edifices and works of art as birds build their nests and spiders spin their webs, would perform their musical concerts in the manner of frogs and cicadas, would play like young animals, and would indulge in love like adult beasts. But one


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cannot then say that all this “makes Man happy.” One would have to say that post-historical animals of the species Homo sapiens (which will live amidst abundance and complete security) will be satisfied [content] with their artistic, erotic and playful behavior, inasmuch as, by definition, they will be contented with it.” (Alexandre Kojève quoted in Michael S. Roth, The Ironist’s Cage: Memory, Trauma, and the Construction of History. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1995: 153.)

“Did you change your name somewhere along the way? Does a part of you live hundreds or thousands of kilometers away? Do you have two countries, two memories? Do you have a border zone?” (Guillermo Verdecchia, Fronteras Americanas/American Borders, cited in Claudia Sadowski-Smith, Border Fictions: Globalization, Empire, and Writing at the Boundaries of the United States. Charlottesville and London: University of Virginia Press, 2008: 123.)

“…the nightmare of a humanity without memory. It is no mere phenomenon of decline, not a reaction of a humanity that…is flooded with stimuli and cannot cope with them. Rather it is necessarily connected to the advancement of the bourgeois principle … [i.e.] the law of exchange, of the like-for-like accounts that match and leave no remainder.” (Theodor W. Adorno, cited in Steven Helmling, Adorno’s Poetics of Critique. London and New York: Continuum Publishers, 2009: 147-148.)

“For Adorno, a Denkbild, which works to say in words what cannot be said in words, launches an impossibility, indeed, wishes to take that very impossibility as its principle. While Wittgenstein famously insists that one must remain silent about that which one cannot speak, the Denkbild seeks to speak only of that about which one cannot speak. The Denkbild therefore works to create an image (Bild) in words of the ways in which it says what cannot be said. It is a snapshot of the impossibility of its own rhetorical gestures. What it gives us to think (denken) is precisely the ways in which it delivers an image (Bild) not only of this or that particular content, but always also of its own folding back upon itself, its most successful failure.” (Gerhard Richter, Thought-Images: Frankfurt School Writer’s Reflections from Damaged Life. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2007:13)

“Man is very well defended against himself, against being reconnoitered and besieged by himself, he is usually able to perceive of himself only his outer walls [Aussenwerke]. The actual


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fortess is inaccessible, even invisible to him, unless his friends and enemies play the traitor and conduct him in by a secret path.” (Friedrich Nietzche, Human, All Too Human, cited in Elliot L. Jurist, Beyond Hegel and Nietzsche: Philosophy, Culture, and Agency. London and Cambridge: The MIT Press, 2000: 251.)

“I forgot to mention that everything I am now writing is accompanied by the emphatic ruffle of a military drum. The moment I start to tell my story—the noise of the drum will suddenly cease. I see the girl from the North-east looking in the mirror and—the ruffle of the drum—in the mirror there appears my own face, weary and unshaven. We have reversed roles so completely. Without a shadow of a doubt she is a physical person. And what is more: she is a girl who has never seen her naked body because she is much too embarrassed.” (Clarice Lispector (Translated by Giovanni Pontiero), The Hour of the Star. New York, NY: New Directions, 1986: 22.)

“What is memory? If the essence of memory maneuvers between Being and the law, what sense does it make to wonder about the being and the law of memory? These are questions that cannot be posed outside language, questions that cannot be formulated without entrusting them to transference and translation, above the abyss. For they require, from one language to another, impossible passageways: the fragile resistance of a span. What is the meaning of the word “mémoire(s)” in French, in its masculine and feminine forms (un mémoire, une mémoire); and in its singular and plural forms (un mémoire, une mémoire, des mémoires). If there is no meaning outside memory, there will always be something paradoxical about interrogating “mémoire” as a unit of meaning as that which links memory to narrative or to all the uses of the word “histoire” (story, history, Historie, Geschichte, etc.).” (Jacques Derrida quoted in Gerhard Richter, “Acts of Memory and Mourning: Derrida and the Fiction of Anteriority,” in Bill Radstone and Susannah Schwarz, Memory: Histories, Theories, Debates. New York, NY: Fordham University Press, 2010: 153.)

“Already present here is the opposition between “latent cause,” the hidden, as yet undisclosed operation of female sexual desire (which will now be brought to light by narration) and the “notissima,” (“extremely evident,” “very visible”) effect which the male openly manifests. Even in suffereing the feminization the male body is hidden, secret, easily legible; even in exerting power the female body is hidden, secret, in need of elucidation and the narrativizing or interpretation of another. Similar oppositions (particularly visible/latent, seeing/seen,


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speaking/spoken to, active/passive) will structure the narrative throughout. On the one hand, the text self-consciously refuses to distribute theses attributes traditionally in terms of the opposition, masculine/feminine. Yet on the other hand it refuses equally to disturb in any way the fundamental axis of masculine and feminine. The switching of positions along this axis can be quite complex, but the only possibility of difference is seen as that of inversion.” (Georgia Nugent, “The Sex Which Is Not One: Deconstructing Ovid’s Hermaphrodite,” Differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies 2.1, (1990): 165.)

“The military battle itself is not the “continuation of politics by other means” as the famous term of Clausewitz is generally incorrectly cited….War, for Clausewitz, is not merely one of many instruments, but the ultima ratio of the friend-enemy grouping….As the most extreme political means it discloses the possibility which underlies every political idea, namely the distinction of friend and enemy.” (Carl Schmitt, The Concept of the Political, quoted in Beatrice Hanssen, Critique of Violence: Between Poststructuralism and Critical Theory. London & New York, NY: Routledge, 2000: 22.)

“WAR AS REMEDY.—For nations that are growing weak and contemptible war may be prescribed as a remedy, if indeed they really want to go on living. National consumption as well as individual admits of a brutal cure. The eternal will to live and inability to die is, however, in itself already a sign of senility of emotion. The more fully and thoroughly we live, the more ready we are to sacrifice life for a single pleasurable emotion. A people that lives and feels in this wise has no need of war.” (Friedrich Nietzsche (Helen Zimmern and Paul V. Cohn, Translator), Human, All-To-Human: A Book For Free Spirits. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 2009: 482.)

“War, in a word, is modernity incarnate.” (Iain Boll, T.J. Clark, Joseph Matthews, and Michael Watts, Afflicted Powers: Capital and Spectacle in a New Age of War. London and New York: Verso: 2006: 79.)

“If’, Hegel declares, ‘prose has penetrated with its particular mode of conception into all the objects of human intelligence and has everywhere left its imprint, poetry must undertake to recast all these elements and to imprint them with its original seal. And since it must also conquer the disdain of the prosaic spirit, it finds itself surrounded on all sides by numerous


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difficulties. It must wrench itself from the habits of ordinary thought, which prefers the indifferent and the accidental’, must in every respect transform ‘the mode of expression of prosaic thought into poetic expression and, despite all the reflection necessarily demanded by such a struggle, must preserve the flawless appearance of inspiration and the original freedom that art requires.” (André Breton, Misére de la poésie, cited in Steven Harris, Surrealist Art and Thought : Art, Politics, and the Psyche. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004: 93.)

“In an age in which traditional aesthetics and contemporary art are irreconcilable, the philosophical theory of art has no other choice, to paraphrase Nietzsche, that to consider decaying categories as transcendent categories in determined negation. All that is left to contemporary aesthetics is the reasoned and concrete dissolution of the accepted aesthetic categories: at the same time, dissolution sets free the transformed truth of those categories.” (Theodor W. Adorno, Aesthetic Theory, quoted in Sanford Budick and Wolfgang Iser, Languages of the Unsayable: The Play of Negativity in Literature and Literary Theory. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1987: 149.)

“The confessions of a synesthete must sound tedious and pretentious to those who are protected from such leakings and drafts by more solid walls than mine are. To my mother, though, this all seemed quite normal. The matter came up, one day in my seventh year, as I was using a heap of old alphabet blocks to build a tower. I casually remarked to her that their colors were all wrong. We discovered then that some of her letters had the same tint as mine and that, besides, she was optically affected by musical notes. These evoked no chromatisms in me whatsoever. Music, I regret to say, affects me merely as an arbitrary succession of more or less irritating sounds. Under certain circumstances I can stand the spasms of a rich violin, but the concert piano and all wind instruments bore me in small doses and flay me in larger ones.” (Vladimir Nabokov, Speak, Memory: An Autobiography Revisited. New York: Vintage Books, 1989: 35-36.)

“I got out of bed and, in my nightdress and with bare feet, went to the window to see what the weather was like. Strange! Usually from the window I have a wide view of the Olympic Village: the buildings on piles, the flyover with cars passing. We live in Parioli district and our house is right opposite the Village. But now, on the contrary, there is no Olympic Village, no flyover; nothing but a garden which looks like a pine wood, with the trunks of the pine trees bending this way and that, and a darkness in the air as though it were going to rain. The window, in any case, is four floors lower down; I used to be on the fifth floor, now I am on the first floor.


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I went on looking, and then, gradually, like shapeless fragments from a shipwreck that comes up to the surface of the sea after the ship has sunk, scraps of recollections came floating up to the surface of my memory: the psychoanalyst, seated in a chair behind me, talking to me, I myself lying on the usual couch, in his study, and answering him without seeing him….and he talked to me for days, for months, for years…” (Alberto Moravia (Translated by Angus Davidson), Paradise. London: Granada Publishing Limited, 1971: 16.)

“A nightmare has haunted me since my childhood: I am looking at a text that I can’t read, or only a tiny part of it is decipherable. I pretend to read it, aware that I’m inventing; then suddenly the text is completely scrambled, I can no longer read anything or even invent it, my throat tightens up and I wake up. I’m not blind to the personal investment there may be in this obsession with language that exists everywhere and escapes us in its very survival. It survives by turning its looks away from us, its face inclined toward a darkness we know nothing about.” (Michel Foucault quoted in Heather Love, Feeling Backward: Loss and the Politics of Queer History. London and Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2007: 49.)

“manuscript. Oh no, it was not a work of fiction which one dashes off, you know, to make money: it was a mad neurologist’s testament, a kind of Poisonous Opus as in that film. It had cost him, and would cost him, years of toil, but the thing was of course, an absolute secret. If she mentioned it at all, she added, it was because she was drunk. She wished to be taken home or preferably to some cool quiet place with a clean bed and room service. She wore a strapless gown” (Vladimir Nabokov (Edited by Dimitri Nabokov), The Original of Laura: (Dying is Fun): A novel in fragments. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2008: 3.)

“The impending shift from quantitative to qualitative liberalism emphasizes once again the hazards involved in the degeneration of liberalism into ideology. By tradition American liberalism is humane, experimental and pragmatic; it has no sense of messianic mission and no faith that all problems have final solutions. It assumes that freedom implies conflict. It agrees with Madison, in the Tenth Federalist, that the competition among economic interests is inherent in a free society. It also agrees with George Bancroft, who wrote: “The feud between the capitalist and laborer, the house of Have and the house of Want, is as old as social union, and can never be entirely quieted; but he who will act with moderation, prefer fact to theory, and


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remember that everything in the world is relative and not absolute, will see that the violence of the contest may be stilled. Its empirical character means that American liberalism stands in sharp contrast to the millennial nostalgia which still characterizes both the American right and the European left – the notion that the day will come when all conflict will pass, and mankind will be cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, and mankind will behold a new heaven and a new earth. Jose’ Figueres, the Latin American patriot, calls his finca in the Costa Rican uplands “La Lucha San Fin” – the struggle without end. Freedom is inseparable from struggle; it is both the means employed and the end attained. This, I believe, states the essence of the progressive hope – this and the understanding that the struggle itself offers not only better opportunities for others but a measure of fulfillment for oneself.” (Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., introduction to the new edition, Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr., The Vital Center: The Politics of Freedom. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, originally published in 1949, 1962: xv-xvi.)

“The arts are not for the few – they are for the many, for the people as a whole. This is the central fact and the essence of the strength of the arts in a democratic society. The values of art are universal. Everyone can feel the impact of cultural experiences once his eyes and ears have been opened and his mind sensitized. There is no reason why anyone in our society should be denied the opportunity for the same experiences, the spiritual exhilaration that the arts can offer.” (Nelson A. Rockefeller, Our Environment Can Be Saved. New York: Doubleday and Company Inc., 1970: 123.)

Not What Was Meant. “When the Academy of Arts demanded freedom Of artistic expression from narrow minded-bureaucrats There was a howl and a clamor in its immediate vicinity But roaring above everything Came a deafening thunder of applause From beyond the Sector boundary. Freedom! It roared. Freedom for the artists! Freedom all round! Freedom for all! Freedom for the exploiters! Freedom for the warmongers! Freedom for the Ruhr cartels! Freedom for Hitler’s generals! Softly, my dear fellows …


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The Judas kiss for the artists follows Hard on the Judas kiss for the workers. The arsonist with his bottle of petrol Sneaks up grinning to The Academy of Arts. But it was not to embrace him, just To knock the bottle out of his dirty hand that We asked for elbow room. Even the narrowest minds In which peace is harbored Are more welcome to the arts than the art lover Who is also a lover of the art of war. (Bertolt Brecht, Poems 1913-1956: 437-438.)

“Who am I? Where am I? I know less and less certainly, if I ever did at all, to where this grassy, shadowy world is rushing. I sit perpetually immobile within my spinning blood, at home nowhere and never anything but lost. The clouds refrain from travelling just now. They hang over the eastward horizon, a long verterbral column of cumuli. […] And who is my father? […] To every man the right to live, to work, to be himself, and to become whatever thing his manhood and his vision can combine to make him—this seeker, is the promise of America. Thomas Wolfe was the one who wrote that, of course. Who am I that in my yearning for America I cry over and over: I’ve got to get out of here.” (William T. Vollmann, Riding Toward Everywhere. New York, NY: Ecco, 2008: 156.)

“I was thirty-eight years old when my father died, but I don’t feel I had thirty-eight years of fathering. In fact, I’ve heard more from him in the dozen years since his death than I ever did when he was alive.” (Clark Blaise, I Had A Father: A Post-Modern Autobiography. Toronto: HarperCollins Publishers, 1993:3.)

“briefly the heart does break ….


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i never know him never name him bury him under the greening tree in the shadow of the old stone wall falls away from us into the earth at birth unborn again.” (bpNichol, “The Martyrology,” quoted in Stephen Scobie, bpNichol: What History Teaches. Vancouver: Talonbooks, 1984: 57.)

“cuius erat facies, in qua materque paterque cognosci passent; nomen quoque traxit ab illis.” “He had features in which both mother and father could be recognized; he took his name from them as well.” (Nugent, “This Sex Which Is Not One: De-Constructing Ovid’s Hermaphrodite,”: 165.)

“Symbols in fact envelope the life of man in a network so total that they join together, before he comes into the world, those who are going to engender him “by flesh and blood”; so total that they bring to his birth, along with the gifts of the stars, if not with the gifts of the fairies, the shape of his destiny, so total that they give the words that will make him faithful or renegade, the law of the acts that will follow him right to the very place where he is not yet and even beyond his death; and so total that through them his end finds its meaning in the last judgment, where the World absolves his being or condemns it—unless he attain the subjective bringing to realization of being-for-death.” (Jacques Lacan, “The Function and Field of Speech and Language in Psychoanalysis,” in Alex E. Blazer, I Am Otherwise: The Romance of Poetry and Theory After the Death of the Subject. Champaign, IL: Dalkey Archive Press, 2007: 175.)

“Benjamin theorizes that the Trauerspiel [“mourning play”] marked a decisive break with the theatrical tradition of the past, particularly as the tradition was influenced by mythical Greek tragedy. While earlier medieval mystery plays and Renaissance dramas were situated within a


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cosmically ordered world, the Trauerspiel interested Benjamin because it delved into the profane and even chaotic realm of a fallen, corporeal world. And in its setting within the carnal world, Trauerspiel offers a place to rethink the site of the aesthetic – that liminal passageway between the inner and outer worlds – bound to the vicissitudes of history.” (S. Brent Plate, Walter Benjamin, Religion, and Aesthetics: Rethinking Religion Through the Arts. New York and London: Routledge, 2005: 43.)

“Things would have been fine if my body and I had got on well together. But the fact is that we were an odd couple. When a child is unhappy, he doesn’t ask himself questions. If he suffers bodily as a result of needs and sickness, his unjustifiable state justifies his existence. His right to live is based on hunger, on the constant danger of death. He lives in order not to die. As for me, I was neither rich enough to think I was predestined nor poor enough to feel my desires as demands. I performed my alimentary duties, and God sometimes—rarely—blessed me with the grace that enables one to eat without disgust, namely appetite. Breathing, digesting, defecating unconcernedly, I lived because I had begun to live. I was unaware of the violence and savage demands of that gorged companion, my body, which made itself known by a series of mild disturbances, much in demand among grown-ups. At the time, a self-respecting family was in duty bound to have at least one delicate child.” (Jean-Paul Sartre (translated by Bernard Frechtman), The Words. New York: Vintage Books, 1981: 88-89.)

“[S]ociety must be a good master, a garrulous old nurse to her children. She must take care of them; teach them what to do; lead them by the swaddling bands; coax them into feeble and wellregulated activity. … The state must strengthen her apparatus, improve her machinery. She must put her subjects down … teach them to be tame and tractable; to go at her will … to wake at her bidding, to be humble and meek. All this with the belief that men so subordinated and put down can be, should be, great and happy.” (John Clark Ridpath (1890) cited in K.A. Cuordileone, Manhood and American Political Culture in the Cold War. New York and London: Routeldge, 2005: 237.)

“The publication of the Kinsey reports on male and female sexual behavior, in 1948 and 1953, respectively, only reinforced the politicization of homosexuality and lesbianism. In revealing the diversity of sexual practices Americans of both sexes engaged in, the Kinsey reports seemed to confirm the increasing heterogeneity of American society. Indeed, the reports contributed to the emergence of alternative constructions of social reality by demonstrating


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through the use of scientific data that homosexuals and lesbians were not “maladjusted” individuals who were emotionally unstable but productive members of society who did not differ significantly from heterosexuals. At the same time, however, the reports contributed to the crisis precipitated by the discovery that homosexuals and lesbians could “pass” as heterosexuals by calling attention to the differences not only among Americans but within them as well. The reports provided scientific evidence suggesting that sexual identities were fluid and unstable rather than exclusively and permanently heterosexual or homosexual. Many of the individuals interviewed by Kinsey and his colleagues had engaged in same-sex practices regularly as adolescents but had become exclusively heterosexual as adults; others continued to engage in same-sex practices, despite being married and having children. In demonstrating that sexual identities were fluid and unstable, the reports hindered the attempts of gays and lesbians to define themselves as members of an oppressed minority and contributed to the growing crisis over national security. Following publication of the Kinsey reports, homosexuals and lesbians were thought to threaten national security not only because they were emotionally unstable and susceptible to blackmail but also because they might convert heterosexuals to their “perverted” practices by seducing them.” (Robert J. Corbert, In the Name of National Security: Hitchcock, Homophobia, and the Political Construction of Gender in Postwar America. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 1993: 8-9.)

“The child takes parts of the bodies of others into its own body-image. It also adopts in its own personality the attitude taken by others towards parts of their own bodies. Postural models of the body are closely connected with each other. We take the body-images of others either in parts or as a whole. In the latter case we call it identification. But we may also want to give away our body-image, and we then project it onto others. The patient projects his own difficulties and his whole body-image into the analyst.” (Paul Schilder, The Image and Appearance of the Human Body: Studies in the Constructive Energies of the Psyche, cited in Gail Weiss, Body Images: Embodiment as Intercorporeality. New York and London: Routledge, 1999: 33.)

“[…] is there anything warmer, more secret, more fragile than the inside of a child’s bed? That is one of the places where the world is endlessly reborn. It is one of the hearts of the world. I have no consciousness of what an object is composed of, the world at the time is full and that plentitude is filled with its plentitude alone: flesh is nothing but flesh …. It is that fear, that an object might find itself alone and bereft of a purpose, come the first scientific revolutions (during pre-adolescence: universal gravitation, the body composed of water, the “immateriality” of clouds—blue sky and History within, rock clouds, villages, settings for History, for inventions, for art, for thought, Gothic forms and Faust within) that turns into the obsession of materiality:


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for the luster of rocks or for the dried-out insect or for the pen cap […] that I take back with me to slip into my cold bed in the small boardinghouse, they bring the revelation of History…[…]. (Pierre Guyotat (translated by Noura Wedell), Coma. Los Angeles & Paris: Semiotext(e), 2010 : 202-3.)

“Sleeping In ourselves we are still empty. Thus we easily fall asleep if there are not external stimuli. Soft pillows, darkness, silence allows us to fall asleep, the body grows dark. If one lies awake at night this is by no means wakefulness but rather a sluggish, consuming crawling around on the spot. It is then that one notices how uncomfortable it is to be with nothing other than oneself.” (Ernst Bloch, The Spirit of Utopia, quoted in Gerhard Richter, Thought-Images: Frankfurt School Writers’ Reflections from Damaged Life. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2007: 98.)

“Allegorical imagery is appropriated imagery; the allegorist does not invent images but confiscates them. He lays claim to the culturally significant, poses at its interpreter. And in his hands, the image becomes something other (allos = agoreuei = to speak). He does not restore an original meaning that may have been lost or obscured: allegory is not hermeneutics. Rather, he adds another meaning to the image. If he adds, however, he does so only to replace: the allegorical meaning supplants an antecedent one; it is a supplement. This is why allegory is condemned, but it is also the source of its theoretical significance.” (Craig Owens, Beyond Recognition: Representation, Power, and Culture. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992: 34.)

“The mixture of pain and pleasure, an intellectual tension accompanying the hard work of exegetical labor, is nothing less than the cognitive aspect of the ambivalence which inheres in the contemplation of any sacred object. Whatever is sacer must cause the shiver of mingled delight and awe that constitutes our sense of “difficulty.” (Angus Fletcher quoted in Jean Ellen Petrolle, Religion without Belief: Contemporary Allegory and the Search for Postmodern Faith. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2008: 89.)

“TYNDAREUS, KING OF SPARTA, PRESENTED HIS DAUGHTER HELEN TO THE PRINCES OF GREECE.


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‘YOU MUST SWEAR THAT YOU WILL BE GOOD FRIENDS WITH THE MAN WHOM MY DAUGHTER SHALL CHOOSE FOR A HUSBAND.’ HELEN CHOSE MENELAUS, BROTHER OF AGAMEMNON, WHO WAS CHIEF OF ALL THE KINGS OF GREECE. AFTER A WHILE, HELEN’S FATHER DIED AND MENELAUS BECAME KING OF SPARTA. MENELAUS AND HELEN LIVED HAPPILY TOGETHER UNTIL THERE CAME TO SPARTA A YOUNG PRINCE, PARIS BY NAME, WHO WAS THE SON OF PRIAM, KING OF TROY. CRAZED BY HIS LOVE FOR HER, PARIS STOLE HELEN FROM HER HUSBAND. MENELAUS’ BROTHER, AGAMEMNON, CALLED A MEETING OF ALL GREEK LEADERS… ‘YOU PRINCES OF GREECE MUST KEEP YOUR OATH AND HELP MY BROTHER GET BACK THE FAIR HELEN.’ ‘WE’LL KEEP OUR OATH.’ THUS BEGAN THE WAR BETWEEN THE GREEKS AND THE TROJANS. FOR NINE YEARS, THE GREEKS BESIEGED TROY BUT THEY COULD NOT BREAK THROUGH THE CITY WALLS. THEY CAME TO BE IN GREAT WANT OF FOOD AND CLOTHES, SO THEY LEFT PART OF THE ARMY TO WATCH THE CITY, AND WITH THE REST THEY WENT FORTH AND DESPOILED OTHER CITIES, THUS CAME ABOUT THE GREAT QUARREL…BETWEEN AGAMEMNON AND ACHILLES.” (Homer (Illustrated by Alex A. Blum), The Iliad. New York: Gilberton Company, 1966.)

“The Iliad, the founding text of the West, begins with the word “rage”: Homer appeals to the goddess to help him sing the song of the rage of Achilles and its dire consequences. Although the dispute between Achilles and Agamemnon concerns the erotic - Agamemnon took the slave Briseis from Achilles – Briseis is not an object of intense erotic investment, but in herself totally irrelevant. What matters is not frustrated sexual gratification, but hurt pride. What is crucial, however, in this position is the latest monotheistic, Judeo-Christian mutation of rage. While in ancient Greece rage is allowed to explode directly, what follows is its sublimation, temporal deferral, postponement, transference: not we, but God, should keep the books of wrongs and


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settle accounts in the Last Judgment. The Christian prohibition of revenge (“turn the other cheek”) is strictly correlative to the apocalyptic scenery of the Last Days.” (Slavoj Žižek, Violence: Six Sideways Reflections. New York: Picador, 2008: 186.)

“Some thing could not exist except under intense attention: looking with severity and a hardness that made her seek not the cause of things, but the thing itself.” (Clarice Lispector, The Besieged City, quoted in Benjamin Moser, Why This World: A Biography of Clarice Lispector. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009: 181.)

“The transparency of a fully acquired identity will be the automatic source of all decisions. This is the world of Homeric heroes. But if there is a gap in the identity of social actors, the filling of this gap will necessarily generate the split between filling content and filling function, and because the latter is not necessarily associated with any content there will be a competition between the various contents to incarnate the very form of fullness. A democratic society is not one in which the “best” content dominates unchallenged but rather one in which nothing is definitely acquired and there is always the possibility of change.” (Ernesto Laclau, “Power and Respresentation,” in Mark Poster (Editor), Politics, Theory, and Contemporary Culture. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1993: 292.)

“To form an army, therefore, it is first necessary to choose the proper men for that purpose. The ancients termed this choice a delectus, but we call it a military conscription. Those, then, who have prescribed the rules for the art of war unanimously agree that such men should be selected from temperate climates, so that they may be both brave and cautious.” (Niccolò Machiavelli (A revised edition of the Ellis Farnsworth Translation), The Art of War. Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press, 1965: 24-25.)

“But the Dragon is chain’d, the Devil’s Power is limited; he has indeed a vastly extended Empire, being Prince of the Air, having, at least, the whole Atmosphere to range in, and how far that Atmosphere is extended, is not yet ascertain’d by the nicest observations; I say, at least, because we do not yet know how far he maybe allow’d to make excursions beyond the Atmosphere of this Globe into the planetary Worlds, and what power he may exercise in all the habitable parts of the solar system; nay, of all the other solar systems, which, for ought we know, may exist in the mighty extent of created space, and of which you may hear farther in its order.”


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(Daniel Defoe (Irving N. Rothman and R. Michael Bowerman), The Political History of the Devil. New York, NY: AMS Press Inc., 2003: 41.)

“Over the centuries, Afghanistan has been invaded by Greeks, Persians, Mongols, British, and Russians. For those without the sense to keep going, it became a graveyard. In 327 B.C., Alexander the Great only briefly added it to his empire. Though having conquered everything to the Punjab in the 4th Century A.D., the Persian Sassanids had little control over Afghanistan. In the 16th Century A.D., Babur—a descendent of Tamerlane—pushed into the area. He preferred Kabul to Delhi, and it became his resting place. The British entered Afghanistan on three separate occasions: 1839, 1878, and 1897. In the first invasion, only one man survived the retreat. During the last, some 40,000 soldiers got no farther than the Khyber Pass. The Afghans have learned well how to repel powerful invaders. They do so not by conventional defense, but by discouraging occupation.” (H. John Poole, Tactics of the Crescent Moon: Militant Muslim Combat Methods. Emerald Isle, NC: Posterity Press, 2004: 87-88.)

“After the Soviets exploded their first atomic bomb in September 1949, brinkmanship and containment fueled both national arrogance and technological progress. The continual threat of nuclear war and the spread of Communism directed attention and resources toward military and cultural rivalry. Instead of channeling military ordnance and production into the “good” that had been expected to evolve from the war, concentrating on military progress during the cold peace absorbed the resources that could have universalized the “world of tomorrow” and elevated all members of American society equally, not merely to higher hygienic standards but also to a higher sense of social responsibility. The cold war’s nuclear weapons, rocket technology, and intensified mistrust of Soviet Communism – also by by-products of World War II – contributed to an adjustment in the American concept of progress and altered the circumstances under which the wartime vision of the “world of tomorrow” could evolve and exist. Despite the desire for a “better America,” the postwar political world failed to live up to the wartime dream.” (Cynthia Lee Henthorn, From Submarines to Suburbs: Selling a Better America, 1939-1959. Athens, Ohio: University of Ohio Press, 2006: 212-213.)


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THE SPELL “This much of Hegel’s insistence on the universality of the particular is true: in its perversion, as impotent individualization at the universal’s mercy, the particular is dictated by the principle of perverted universality.” (Theodor Adorno (trans. by E.B. Ashton, Negative Dialectics. New York: The Seabury Press, 1973: 344.)

“I go out onto the lawns and spacious structures of memory, where treasure is stored, all the representations conveyed there by any of my senses, along with the further expressions we derive from those representations by expanding, contracting, or otherwise manipulating them; everything ticketed (commendatum) and stored for preservation (everything that has not been erased in the interval, everything not buried in oblivion). Some things, summoned, are instantly delivered up, though others require a longer search, to be drawn from the recesses less penetrable. And all the while, jumbled memories throng out (prouunt) or, while something else is being sought, flirt out (prosiliunt) to block the way, as if teasing: “Wasn’t it us you were seeking?” My heart’s hand strenuously waves these things away from my memory’s gaze, until the dim thing sought arrives at last, fresh from depths. Yet other things are brought up easily, in proper sequence from beginning to end, and laid back in the same order, recallable at will— which happens whenever I recite a literary passage by heart.” (Quote from St. Augustine’s Confessions, cited in Gary Wills, Augustine’s Confessions: A Biography. Princeton and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011: 101-102.)

When, Love, I pause to heed The anguish that you deal me with your blows, In search of death I speed And hope to find an end there to my woes; But as I reach my goal, My haven in this stormy sea of pain, Such joy pervades my soul I turn away, for I feel strong again. And so living ends my life And dying give me back my vital breath: A paradox of strife That keeps me dead in life, alive in death! (Miguel De Cervantes Saavedra (trans. John Rutherford), The Ingenious Hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha. London: Penguin Books, 2003: 946-947.)


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“The fear of “excessive” identification is therefore the fundamental feature of late-capitalist ideology: the Enemy is the “fanatic” who “over identifies” instead of maintaining a proper distance toward the dispersed plurality of subject-positions. In short: the elated “deconstructionist” logomachy focused on “essentialism” and “fixed identities” ultimately fights a straw-man. Far from containing any kind of subversive potentials, the dispersed, plural, constructed subject hailed by postmodern theory (the subject prone to particular, inconsistent modes of enjoyment, etc.) simply designates the form of subjectivity that corresponds to late capitalism. Perhaps the time has come to resuscitate the Marxian insight that Capital is the ultimate power of “de-territorialization” which undermines every fixed social identity, and to conceive of “late capitalism” as the epoch in which the traditional fixity of ideological positions (patriarchal authority, fixed sexual identities, etc.) becomes an obstacle to the unbridled commodification of everyday life.” (Slavoj Žižek cited in George Hartley, The Abyss of Representation: Marxism and the Postmodern Sublime. Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 2003: 289.)

“On the level of the social body, libido is caught in two systems of opposition: class and sex. It is expected to be male, phallocratic, it is expected to dichotomize all values—the oppositions strong/weak, rich/poor, useful/useless, clean/dirty, etc. Conversely, on the level of the sexed body, libido is engaged in becoming-woman. More precisely, the becoming-woman serves as a point of reference, and eventually as a screen for other types of becoming (example: becoming-child in Schumann, becoming-animal in Kafka, becoming-vegetable in Novalis, becoming-mineral in Beckett).” (Gilles Deleuze, “Becoming-Woman,” quoted in Chris Kraus and Sylvère Lotringer, Hatred of Capitalism: A Reader. Los Angeles and New York: Semiotext(e), 2001: 356.)

“The vigilance with which the demarcation between humans and animals, humans and things, and humans and children are watched over and safeguarded tells us much about the assailability of what they seek to preserve: an abstract notion of the human as unified, autonomous, and unmodified subject.” (Diana Fuss, Human, All Too Human, quoted in Cary Wolfe, Animal Rites: American Culture, the Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 2003: 157.)


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“My childhood was like the weather; be patient and we might be back in Canada or a place with snow, a place with streetcars or mountains. If he had been able to buy any of these properties we rented or to hold on to any of the businesses he started, the rising property values would have made him rich. Our Florida years were spent visiting resettled Yankees. World War II veterans younger than my father who’d established themselves in air-conditioned mansions on beaches or lakefronts, with ocean-going yachts and Bahamian servants, living like colonial barons in some unthreatening Third World sweatbox. Which, of course, Florida was. We never rose above the rented sweatboxes, or worse.” (Blaise, I Had A Father: 11.)

“As a boy you felt more sensual and languid in your grandmother’s bosom than in your mother’s. Grown-up, you visit her, lying on her bed, unemployed, unoccupied nothing but a woman, and those sensual memories come back to you so strongly that your adult male body is scandalously aroused, at the gates of death.” (Alphonso Lingis, Dangerous Emotions, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: University of California Press, 2000: 155.)

“Breakfast Room A popular tradition warns against recounting dreams the next morning on an empty stomach. In this state, though awake, one remains under the spell of the dream. For washing things brings on the surface of the body and the visible motor functions into the light, while in the deeper strata, even during the morning ablutions, the grey penumbra of dream persists and, indeed, in the solitude of the first waking hour, consolidates itself. He who shuns contact with the day, whether for fear of his fellow men or for the sake of inward composure, is unwilling to eat and disdains his breakfast. He thus avoids a rupture between the noctural and the daytime worlds—a precaution justified only by the combustion of dream in a concentrated morning’s work, if not in prayer; otherwise this avoidance can be a source of confusion between vital rhythms. In this condition, the narration of dreams can bring calamity, because a person still half in league with the dream world betrays it in his words and must incur its revenge. To express this in more modern terms: he betrays himself. He has outgrown the protection of dreaming naïveté, and in laying hands on his dream visages without thinking, he surrenders himself. For only from the far bank, from broad daylight, may dream be addressed from the superior vantage of memory. This further side of dream is attainable only through a cleansing analogous to washing, yet totally different. By way of the stomach. The fasting man tells his dream as if her were talking in his sleep.”


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(Walter Benjamin, “One-Way Street,” in (Marcus Bullock and Michael W. Jennings, Editors), Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Volume I, 1913-1926. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press, 1999: 445.)

“In the room of gravel and moss, the Angel of Forgetting knocked down the wall to let wind and birds in. She was being kind. The little boy said: Don’t you know me? The Angel of Forgetting smelled a memory somewhere, like a pattern of a few dozen tiles. Sniffing, she raised her arms, swam the sea of graffiti-waved grayness, marched down narrow streets sunken like dry cobblestoned canals. Some rooms were hollowed out to store water or oil or grain, each opening being an upturned bowl with a ring around its hole, so that the darkness inside widened like a woman’s breast. The little boy didn’t follow. He stayed in his house.” (William T. Vollmann, “Herculaneum, near Napoli, Campania, Italy,” The Atlas. New York: Penguin Books, 1996: 94.)

“Lt. Blair: [about David's parents] That's the coldest couple I ever saw. David Maclean: They're not! They're wonderful, *they've* done something to them, something awful!” (Invaders from Mars: 1MDB.)

“The text speaks for itself: if Gustave wants to be a woman, it is because his partly feminine sexuality requires a change of sex that would permit him the full development of his resources. Listen to what the young hero of Novembre confides to us: “I wanted to languish to the utmost, I would have liked to be smothered with roses, I would have liked to be bruised by kisses, to be the flower tossed by the wind, the bank dampened by the river, the earth made fecund by the sun.” The young man speaks in his own name as a man—it is his masculine body that dreams of these languors. And yet what is he wishing for if not to be the object of aggression, to become prey, to swoon under brutal caresses (he would be tossed about like a plum tree), to be dampened, made fecund, therefore penetrated? And in the couples he forms successively with wind, river, and sun, all the substantives that designate him are feminine, all those that designate his partners masculine. True, these are cosmic elements (water, air, fire). He himself is earth (whether field, bank, fecundated soil), the fourth element; and readers have cited this passage with good reason as an expression of Flaubertian pantheism. We should stress, however, that this is the sexual version of pantheistic ecstasy; Flaubert knows very well that the earth is woman


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and woman is earth in the rustic religions. The three tests are completed: constituted passivity becomes conscious of itself in erotic turmoil; it passively desires to become flesh under the manipulation of others, and this is a matter of a personalizing revolution—the child sexualizes passivity by demanding to submit to it as a permanent passivization in lovemaking…” (Jean-Paul Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 1821-1857. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1987: 33-34.)

“Early in January, 1957, Russia exploded an atomic bomb, and American scientists monitored its fallout of fission products. Non-stop simulated bomber flights in the upper atmosphere were now reported by the U.S. as travelling around the world in about forty-five hours. Troubles arose in the Middle East. Hungary broke into revolution. Then came Sputnik, space vehicles, ICBM’s and crash programs for training more scientists. The world is like a volcano that breaks out repeatedly … The world approaches this critical period with a grave disruption of the family system … The new age demands a stronger individual, more resolute and better equipped individual … To produce such persons will demand a reorganization of the present family system and the building of one that is stronger emotionally and morally.” (Carl C. Zimmerman and Lucius F. Cervantes, cited in Elaine Tyler May, Homeward Bound. New York: Basic Books, 1988: 108-109.)

“When you wet the bed first it is warm then it gets cold. His mother put on the oilsheet. That had the queer smell. His mother had a nicer smell than his father. She played on the piano the sailor’s hornpipe for him to dance. He danced: Tralala lala Tralala tralaladdy Tralala lala Tralala lala. Uncle Charles and Dante clapped. They were older than his father and mother but uncle Charles was older than Dante. Dante had two brushes in her press. The brush with the maroon velvet back was for Michale Davitt and the brush with the green velvet back was for Parnell. Dante gave him a cachou every time he brought her a piece of tissue paper. The Vances lived in number seven. They had a different father and mother. When they were grown up he was going to marry Eileen. He hid under the table. His mother said:


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--O, Stephen will apologise. Dante said: --O, if not, the eagles will come and pull out his eyes. Pull out his eyes, Apologise, Apologise, Pull out his eyes. Apologise, Pull out his eyes, Pull out his eyes, Apologise. (James Joyce, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. London: Penguin Classics, 2000: 3-4.)

“What must I do to become a hero?” For only heroes enter the temples. And in silence, suddenly, his howling cry, one didn’t know if of love or mortal pain, the hero smelling of myrrh, frankincense, and benjamin.” (Lispector, “Where you were at Night,” in Lispector, Soulstorm: 118-119.)

“He seemed to be a born artist. At first he only showed bent for all general art. He drew well, he made curious little modellings in clay mud; he had a capital ear for music and managed in some unknown way of his own to pick out certain tunes on the piano. At one time he gave evidence of a genuine talent for the stage. For days he would pretend to be some dreadful sort of character, he did not know whom, talking to himself, stamping and shaking his fists; then he would dress himself in an old smoking-cap, a red table-cloth and one of his father’s discarded Templar swords, and pose before the long mirrors ranting and scowling.” (Norris, Vandover and the Brute: 7.)

“Face in the Mirror Who am I? What am I? Tell me. This pale dark-rimmed face, skin sallow, eyes underscored with purple bruises,


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mouth too full, mouth too big hair a black unruly ruff I brush slowly into a furry hood holding the brush out after each stroke to hear it retort wispily. My eyes are darkly mournful, an outside rim of black, then brown around the black staring pupils. My face is sick. I do not like it. It is not me.” (Marge Piercy, early GRRRL: the early poems of MARGE PIERCY. Wellfleet, MA: Leapfrog Press, 1999: 100.)

“[the mirror stage] produces the “spatial intuition” which is found at the heart of the functioning of signification—in signs and sentences. From that point on, in order to capture this image unified in a mirror, the child must remain separate from it, his body agitated by the semiotic motility …, which fragments him more than it unifies him in a representation.” (Julia Kristeva quoted in Szu-Chin Hestia Chen, French Feminist Theory Exemplified Through the Novels of Julia Kristeva: The Bridge From Psychoanalytic Theory to Literary Production. Lewiston, NY: The Edwin Mellen Press, 2008: 131.)

“WHEEZING HEROES.—Poets and artists who suffer from a narrow chest of the emotions generally make their heroes wheeze. They do not know what easy breathing means.” (Friedrich Nietzsche, Human, All-Too-Human: Parts One and Two. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2006: 465.)

“Men with weak masculine components were characterized by a roundness and softness of body outline, lack of muscle, relatively greater hip breadth to shoulders, fullness in the mammary area, ‘feminine abdominal protuberance’, close thighs, ‘greater outer curvature of the calves’, and lateral distribution of pubic hair. Unlike ‘masculine men’, they might carry their arms at an angle at the elbow (hyperextensibility). They would never do well in the fight. In 1943, this theory was tested by the Royal Officer Training Corps. Of those men with a ‘strong masculine component’, 41 per cent were rated as excellent officer candidates; the proportion in the medium masculine component was 11 per cent; and in the weak or very weak group, none were rated as excellent officers. Combativeness was thus inscribed on the male physique.” (Joanna Bourke, An Intimate History of Killing: Face-to-Face Killing in Twentieth-Century Warfare. London: Granta Books, 1999: 111.)


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“Kid, if your tank is loyal, you don’t have to be. Get in.” “I don’t like the looks of this.” “Nobody does, at first. Eventually, you’ll learn to to love it. Think of it as a womb with a view.” “I’ll bet you tell that to all the boys,” I said, stalling for time. “Right, but then I don’t get to hook up the girls who volunteer, more’s the pity. Look, kid, get in there. It’s that or the hydroponic vats.” (Leo Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank. Riverside, NY: Baen Publishing, 1999: 3.)

“Ironic styles have generally predominated during periods of wars against superstitions, whether the superstitions in question be identified as naïve religious faith, the power of the monarchy, the privileges of the aristocracy, or the self-satisfaction of the bourgeoisie. Irony represents the passage of the age of heroes and of capacity to believe in heroism.” (Hayden White, quoted in Michael S. Roth, The Ironist’s Cage: Memory, Trauma, and the Construction of History. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1995: 29.)

“The pleasure of the text is that moment when my body pursues its own ideas—for my body does not have the same ideas I do.” (Roland Barthes (translated by Richard Miller), The Pleasure of the Text. New York: Hill and Wang, 1975:17.)

“These rhythms are as much of the absolute as limited man can grasp, but by recognizing, for example, how development is an essentially lawful process of suffering and reconciliation, of loss and compensatory gains, one comes to trust in the recurrences informing life and to be content with what signs of the absolute he can discover. The result is not alienation but grace, the sense that man in his limited state has what may suffice for secular salvation. And the ultimate testimony of that salvation ( as it was for Augstine in a different context) is that man can both satisfactorily compose his autobiography and offer it for the enrichment of others.” (Charles Altieri, “Wordsworth’s ‘Preface’ as Literary Theory,” quoted in Peters, The Mutilating God: 48.)


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“I open my hand spread out on the table. It lives—it is me. It opens, the fingers open and point. It is lying on its back. It shows me its fat belly. It looks like an animal turned upside down. The fingers are the paws. I amuse myself by moving them very rapidly, like the claws of a crab which has fallen on its back.” (Jean-Paul Sartre (translated by Lloyd Alexander), Nausea. New York, NY: New Directions, 1964: 98.)

“ … illness is not simply parasitical on health or a handicap to artistic creation … The relationship is rather one of symbiosis. Just as illness played a role in opening the past, so it contributes to setting the agenda and timetable for the future. Unlike the sanatorium that cannot cure, illness carries its own antidote, becomes purposeful, nearly teleological, an end in itself. Issuing the license for complete egocentricity, it allies itself with l’oeuvre, the still-to-be-written work, to dictate how Marcel will live and is a dictator and effectively overrides the indifferent body, lack of confidence or conscious will and, finally, Marcel’s procrastination. In the same way, the unconscious memory, also shaped by illness, is superior to the conscious. In the sickroom of the author, the world and the self collapse and coalesce, the former now knowable only through the latter, and the latter known only through his essential somatic being and its archive of memory that accident alone can open.” (Lois Bragg and William Sayers, “Proust’s Prescription: Sickness as the Pre-condition for Writing,” Literature and Medicine 19, no. 2 (Fall 2000): 180.)

“The body is the physical agent of the structures of everyday experience. It is the producer of dreams, the transmitter of cultural messages, a creature of habits, a desiring machine, a repository of memories, an actor in the theatre of power, a tissue of affects and feelings. Because the body is at the boundary between biology and society, between drives and discourse, between the sexual and its categorization in terms of power, biography and history, it is the site par excellence for its transgressing the constraints of meaning or what social discursivity prescribes as normality.” (Nelly Richard, “The Rhetoric of the Body,” cited in D. Emily Hicks, Border Writing: The Multidimensional Text. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1991: 13.)

“The events surrounding the historian and in which he takes part will underlie his presentation like a text written in invisible ink. The history that he lays before the reader, as it were, shape the quotations in the text, and these quotations alone put forward in a fashion readable to


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anybody and everybody. To write history therefore means to quote history. But the concept of quotation implies that any given historical object must be ripped out of its context.” (Walter Benjamin from “Konvolut N” of the Passagen-Werk, “Re the Theory of Knowledge, Theory of Progress,” (trans. by Leigh Hafrey and Richard Sieburth), Gary Smith (ed.), Benjamin: Philosophy, History, Aesthetics. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1989: 67.

“Whole stack of papers here organizing my research here it is, what I was looking for exactly what I’m talking about, 1927, getting the whole chronology in order 1876 to 1929 when the player piano world and everything else collapsed, the first public demonstration of television the image of the dollar sign was projected for sixty seconds by Philo T Farnsworth in 1927, see how I’ve got everything organized here put my finger right on it?” (William Gaddis, AGAPĒ AGAPE. New York, NY: Viking Press, 2001: 6-7.)

“For Benjamin the memories that may be most valuable for enriching everyday life are not necessarily those attuned to present-day needs but those that keep alive something different or divergent that may in fact be entirely incompatible with a present situation. What was this incompatible material that so attracted Benjamin’s interest? Sometimes he spoke of it as the cumulative and consciously recallable “lived experience” of one’s own personal past, which could often appear strange when set against the self one might prefer, ahistorically, to imagine oneself to have been. At other times, he spoke of it as that which had never “been consciously and explicitly experienced” but which had managed to get lodged in the mind nonetheless (in the form of buried images that had become recognized only in the act of remembering them). And yet at other times, and most intriguing of all, he spoke of this incompatible material as composed of “certain contents of the individual past combine[d] with material of the collective past.” Were this last type of memory to come forth, experience (Erfahrung) would be informed by something supra-individual and perhaps even primordial achieving a depth impossible to attain in the relatively more impoverished and delimited kinds of experience associated with Erlebnis.” (David Gross, Lost Time: On Remembering and Forgetting in Late Modern Culture. Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 2000: 46-47.)

“Since the end of the 30s the production of weapons has played a significant role in the imperialist economy. This latter has now experienced more than three decades of uninterrupted armament. There are no indications that this tendency towards a permanent arms economy will diminish in the foreseeable future. We are thus dealing with one of the hallmarks of late capitalism, which must be explained by the social and economic development of this mode of


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production itself. In particular, we must investigate the extent to which certain specific features of late capitalism, which distinguish if from earlier phases of bourgeois society, are connected with the phenomenon of permanent arms expenditure and whether, if the latter should persist, these features too will continue to condition the entire historical epoch of late capitalism.” (Ernest Mandel (trans. Joris De Bres), Late Capitalism. London and New York: Verso, 1975: 274.)

“The general [Lecomte] knew that the disposition of the battalion was poor; that was why he had taken direct command of it. At that moment, the crowd of women and children, gathered at the mouth of the rue Muller, saw that the general was going to give the command to fire. An involuntary shudder swept them, but instead of fleeing, they threw themselves in front of the soldiers, crying, “Don’t fire!” The general, in a resounding voice that carried above the noise, commanded, “Prepare arms!” The crowd stopped. “Aim!” Rifles were placed on shoulders; muzzles of cannons were lowered. The crowd trembled, but it did not budge. In a short but profound silence, the word resounded, “Fire!” The agony was piercing. The national guardsmen prepared to avenge the crowd if the troops fired. They refused to obey. One gun, then ten, then a hundred were turned up, and it seemed that the death that had hovered over this multitude took flight and spared them… [The general] commanded the men to fire three different times…Nothing aroused them; nothing convinced the soldiers’; they remained unmoved.” (Gay L. Gullickson, Unruly Women of Paris: Images of the Commune. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 1996: 42-43.)

“Shortly afterward, the madness of the world broke out. I was made to stand against the wall like many others. Why? For no reason. The guns did not go off. I said to myself. God, what are you doing? At that point I stopped being insane. The world hesitated, then regained its equilibrium.” (Maurice Blanchot, The Madness of the Day. Barrytown, NY: Station Hill Press, 1981: 6.)


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“We risk being the first people in history to have been able to make their illusions so vivid, so persuasive, so “realistic” that they can live in them. We are the most illusioned people on earth. Yet we dare not become disillusioned, because our illusions are the very house in which we live; they are our news, our heroes, our adventure, our forms of art, our very experience.” (Daniel Boorstin, The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America, quoted in Chris Hedges, Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of the Spectacle. Toronto: Alfred A. Knopf, 2009: 15.)

“The disenchantment of the world is horrible, intolerable. Any mass movement or cult figure that promises a way out of it will be clung to like grim death. Better even fascism than technocracy: there is a social id in most of us that goes on being tempted by that proposition.” (T. J. Clark, Farewell To An Idea: Episodes From a History of Modernism. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1999: 7.)

“The role of the poet is transformed in a border region: a deterritorialized poet can become a cartographer in a project of remapping desire.” (D. Emily Hicks, Border Writing: The Multi-Dimensional Text. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1991: 118.)

“An Angel came to me and said. O pitiable foolish young man! O horrible! O dreadful state! Consider the hot burning dungeon thou art preparing for thyself to all eternity, to which thou art going in such career. I said. perhaps you will be willing to shew me my eternal lot & we will contemplate together upon it and see whether your lot or mine is most desirable […].” (William Blake, “A Memorable Fancy,” in William Blake (Edited by David V. Erdman), The Complete Poetry and Prose of William Blake. New York: Anchor Books, 1988: 41.)

“Canadian writing takes place between the vastness of (closed) cosmologies and the fragments found in the (open) filed of the archaeological site. It is a literature that, compulsively seeking its own story (and to be prophetic after all: this will still be the case a century from now) comes compulsively to a genealogy that refuses origin, to a genealogy that speaks instead, and anxiously, and with a generous reticence, the nightmare and the welcome dream of Babel.”


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(Robert Kroetsch, The Lovely Treachery of Words: Essays Selected and New. Toronto and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989: 71.)

“Well now! Upon what foundations does bourgeois society rest? Discounting the precepts of family, nation and faith, which are merely its corollaries, we can state that the two corner-stones, the two underlying principles of the existing State are authority and property. I am loathe to expound upon this point at greater length. It would be easy for me to show that all of the ills we suffer flow from property and authority. Poverty, theft, crime, prostitution, wars, and revolutions are merely the products of these principles.” (Emile Henry, Letter to the Governor of the Conciergerie Prison, quoted in Daniel Guérin (Paul Sharkey, Translator), No Gods, No Masters: An Anthology of Anarchism. Oakland, CA: AK Press, 2005: 398.)

“With less and less to say of the truth about life under the industrial system – a truth which therefore goes unsaid – the avant-garde grows crabbed and half-baked, given over to the canonizing, codifying, and initiating of itself, to the conning of a limited repertory of dissident attitudes. Nor does the fact that part of the middlebrow public now accepts Proust and Eliot, Matisse and Picasso, Stravinsky and even Schoenberg, and that the younger “advanced” writers” appear in pocketbook anthologies lend new vitality to high art and literature as activity in the here and now. Indeed, the effect may be the opposite, for the genuinely ambitious young writer or artist must now spend more of his energy in establishing distance between himself and the well-meaning but impatient middlebrow than he ever had to with the out-and-out philistine. It would seem therefore that it is middlebrow, not lowbrow, culture that does most nowadays to cut the social ground from under high culture. The middlebrow aspect is taken more and more for culture as such, for representative culture, even by educated people who still regard culture as a matter of personal parts instead of a means merely of asserting status. Active high culture is left increasingly to specialists, and the middlebrow becomes the highest form to which the amateur, or dilettante, can aspire. There have almost always been specialists, but their interests and concerns used to merge intimately with those of the educated and socially powerful amateur. Today, however, there is a growing estrangement. And since the socially powerful amateur, whether they be few or many, still controls our kind of culture, the middlebrow level tends to become its crucial one, where the fate of the whole of our culture may be decided. But can it not be hoped that middlebrow culture will in the course of time be able to transcend itself and rise to a level where it will be no longer middlebrow, but high culture? This hope assumes that the new urban middle classes in America will consolidate and increase their present social and material advantages and, in the process, achieve enough cultivation to support,


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spontaneously, a much higher level of culture than now. And then, supposedly, we shall see, for the first time in history, high urban culture on a “mass” basis. (Clement Greenberg, Commentary, June and July 1953, cited in John O’ Brian, Clement Greenberg: The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 3: Affirmations and Refusals, 1950-1956, Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1993: 139-140.)

“Americans devour what they might otherwise fear to become.” (Richard Rodriguez, “The Fear of Losing a Culture,” cited in Henry Abelove, Michèle Aina Barale, David M. Halperin, (eds.), The Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader. New York and London: Routledge, 1993: 126.)

“[…] I want to accept my freedom without reaching the conclusion like so many others: that existence is only for fools and lunatics: for it would seem that to exist at all is illogical. The action of this story will result in my transfiguration into someone else and in my ultimate materialization into an object. Perhaps I might even acquire the sweet tones of the flute and become entwined in a creeper vine.” (Lispector, The Hour of the Star: 20.)

“Many believed that the female messiah—who, according to Duveyrier, could issue as well from the ranks of prostitutes as from any other stratum of society—would have to come from the Orient (Constantinople). Barrault and twelve comrades, therefore, set out for Constantinople to look for “the Mother.” (Walter Benjamin (Howard Eiland & Kevin McLaughlin, Translators), The Arcades Project. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press, 1999: 597.)

“At the deepest level the androgynous or hermaphroditic ideal of the unconscious reflects the aspiration of the human body to overcome the dualisms which are its neurosis, ultimately to reunify Eros and the death instinct. The dualism of masculine-feminine is merely the transposition into genital terms of the dualism of activity and passivity; and activity and passivity represent unstable fusions of Eros and Death at war with each other. Thus Freud identifies masculinity with aggressiveness and femininity with masochism.” In Freud’s earlier writings, before he discovered the bisexual disposition in the Oedipal complex, and in line with his early notion that love is essentially possessive (“object – choice”), the libido is assumed to be essentially active and masculine. In his later writings the libido is viewed as essentially bisexual,


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“a single libido, though its aims i.e., its modes of gratification, are both active and passive.” But activity and passivity are also derivatives of the death instinct. Thus Eros contains in itself the possibility of reunification with its instinctual opposite, and it strives toward that goal. Freud, in Beyond the Pleasure Principle, used the myth of the creature to suggest that Eros, in seeking ever wider unification, might be seeking to reinstate a lost condition of primal unity. But with his view of the instincts as a radically discrete pair, he could envisage this primal unity only as a primal conglomerate of all life before it was shattered by the intrusion of some separating force. In a more dialectical view, the primal unity Eros seeks to reinstate is its unity with its own opposite, the death instinct.” (Norman O’ Brown, Life Against Death: The Psychoanalytical Meaning of History. Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 1985: 132-133.)

“The journey to the ‘center’ is fraught with obstacles, and yet every city, every temple, every house is at the center of the universe. The supreme rite of initiation is to enter a labyrinth and return from it, and yet every life, even the least eventful, can be taken as a journey through the labyrinth.” (Mircea Eliade, quoted in Jeremy Biles, Ecce Monstrum: Georges Bataille and the Sacrifice of Form. New York: Fordham University Press, 2007: 84.)

“Ye Carpette Knyghte I have a horse – a ryghte good horse – Ne doe I enye those Who scoure ye playne yn headye course Tyll soddayne on theyre nose They lyghte wyth unexpected force Yt ys – a horse of clothes. I have a saddel – ‘Say’st thou soe? Wyth styrruppes, Knyghte, to boote?’ I sayde not that – I answer ‘Noe’ – Yt lacketh such, I woote: Yt ys a mutton-saddle, loe! Parte of ye fleecye brute. I have a bytte – a ryghte good bytte –


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As shall bee seen yn tyme. Ye jawe of horse yt wyll not fyte; Yts use ys more sublyme. Fayre Syr, how deemest thou of yt? Yt ys – thys bytte of rhyme.” (Lewis Carroll, from “Rhyme? And Reason?” in Lewis Carroll, The Complete Works. London: CRW Publishing, 2005: 317.)

“Indeed, in and by its withdrawal, through its destining and sending, Being sets out on a path. Heidegger’s thinking of Being cannot be separated from a thought that involves marking the way (Bahn) or path (Weg). Heidgegger calls Geschick a Be-Wëgung, which can be translated as setting out on the path [mise en chemin]: “We hear the words ‘give way’ [Be- Wëgung] in this sense: to be the original giver and founder of ways….Following the ancient usage of the Alemanic Swabian idiom, the verb wegen can mean ‘to forge a path,’ for example through the countryside in deep snow.” And he points out how close Be-Wëgung is to the Tao: “The key word in Laotse’s poetic thinking is Tao, which, ‘properly speaking’ means way….Tao could be the way that gives all ways….and makes way for everything. All is way.” (Jacques Derrida and Catherine Malabou (trans. by David Wills), Counterpath: Traveling with Jacques Derrida. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2004: 129.)

“The adventure of meaning is played out through countless personal fates, since each human being is assigned somehow to realize in the world the part of truth he embodies.” (Stephane Mosés (Barbara Harshav, Translator), The Angel of History: Rosenzweig, Benjamin, Scholem (Cultural Memory in the Present). Palo Alto, CA: Stanford University Press, 2008: 143.)

“At first, I was exhilarated. I thought I left behind a fatal sickness that had been bred of the city; yet the darkness and confusion were as much my own as that of the city and I had brought it from the Old World to the New World with me, was myself a carrier of the germ of a universal pandemic of despair. […] […] And so in the end, I did, although this self was a perfect stranger to me.” (Angela Carter, The Passion of New Eve. New York and London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1977: 37-38.)


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“Attack and sacrifice, leveraging territory, the rhythm of the gestures made by two opponents—chess is a game of constant interpolation. It is also a game of savagery, negotiation, nuance and subterfuge. These descriptions can also be applied to the crafting of narrative as authors practice the same incremental orchestration to construct convincing and immersive environments and experiences—possible worlds. To this end Cabinet magazine recently published Reading to the Endgame, an ingenious project by D. Graham Burnett & W.J. Walter capable of translating the contents of a novel into a crude chess algorithm. This has allowed the pair of ludic and literary researchers to use a chess board as a proving grounds on which to pit works of fiction against one another.

[Voyage au Centre de La Terre (white) vs. Sense and Sensibility] In developing their system Burnett & Walter took the rows on a chessboard (labeled as 1-8 in chess annotation) and assigned the letters i-p to this axis. So, an opening move of e4 would register as ej-el. Reading to the Endgame is powered by these pairs of two letter combinations (called tuples) that demarcate the start and end point of a given move. The chess algorithm reads the source novels, scanning for tuples that trigger possible moves and, in proceeding through the texts the game develops. The system employs Stylometrics, a stylistic analysis of authorial voice ("sentence length, word and letter frequency, and other quantitative attributes ?of their prose") to arrange the tuples favoured by each author on the board so that their novel would theoretically (if


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a little haphazardly) play to control the centre of the board. The system is about as precise as it could be and in moving beyond a technical analysis of the algorithm and text analysis methodology, the project poses some interesting questions: 

Could the tendencies, deployment of and prose describing specific characters be used to trigger attacks? How might secondary or tertiary characters within a novel relate to specific chess pieces or combinations? For example, in scrambling to protect his "King" Don Quixote, would Sancho Panza have an affinity with the striking power of a bishop or the nonlinear mobility of a knight? Since chess features a typology of opening moves what would be the more common opening sequences generated by Burnett & Walter's system? What authors tend to build solid openings? How would these openings relate to the introductory chapters of the novels in question?

(Greg J. Smith, “Four or Five Chess Machines,” from http://serialconsign.com/2009/11/four-or-five-chessmachines).

“Perhaps if the reader were sufficiently sophisticated he would find these echoes suggestive hints, as rich in significance as the sonorous amplifications of the romantic poets. None the less, we do not derive from this poem as a whole the satisfaction we ask from poetry. Numerous passages are finely written; there is an amusing monologue in the vernacular [the Lil passage in “The Game of Chess”] and the fifth part is nearly admirable. The section beginning “What is that sound high in the air….” has a nervous strength which perfectly suits the theme; but he declines to a mere notation, the result of an indolence of imagination. Mr. Eliot, always evasive in the grand manner, has reached a stage at which he can no longer refuse to recognize the limitations of his medium; he is sometimes walking very near the limits of coherency.” (Edgell Rickword, From his Review of T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land, (1922)” quoted in Perloff, unoriginal genius: 2.)

“Thesis I There was once, we know, an automaton constructed in such a way that it could respond to every move by a chess player with a countermove that would ensure the winning of the game. A puppet wearing Turkish attire and with a hookah in its mouth sat before a chessboard placed on a large table. A system of mirrors created the illusion that this table was transparent on all sides. Actually, a hunchback dwarf – a master of chess – sat inside and guided the puppet’s hand by means of strings. One can imagine a philosophical counterpart to this apparatus. The puppet,


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called ‘historical materialism’, is to win all the time. It can easily be a match for anyone if it enlists the services of theology, which today, as we know, is small and ugly and has to keep out of sight.” (Walter Benjamin, Theses on History, cited in Michel Löwy, Reading Walter Benjamin’s ‘On the Concept of History’. London and New York: Verso, 2005: 23.)

“….the titular machine at the center of the plot actually used to exist, created by an Austrian named Baron Wolfgang von Kempelen in the 1770s, at a time when such other "automatons" as mechanical cuckoo clocks and artificial writing machines were being unveiled in Europe as well. And although it was filled with real mechanics, Kempelen's chess-playing machine was in fact an elaborate hoax; it was a chess-playing human inside of it the whole time, with an ingenious series of sliding cubbyholes within the contraption, so that the player could shift from space to space as Kempelen opened the various doors of the device one at a time. It was a time when socalled "miraculous" things were being done every day, aided by the newfound popularity of the scientific process; that's why few people questioned the idea of a brass-and-wood machine somehow having artificial intelligence, and why so many people took the Turk's ability to play chess at face value. The machine in fact ended up touring for almost 80 years under various owners, with various small periods of "retirement" for continual technological improvements to the hoax; among other storied destinations, the real Turk ended up playing such luminaries as Benjamin Franklin, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Edgar Allen Poe, before accidentally being destroyed in a warehouse fire in the 1850s. And believe it or not, despite several dozen people learning the secret of the Turk over those 80 years, not one of them blabbed it in public until after the Turk had been destroyed; Kempelen in fact spent his entire life being regarded as a mechanical genius, going to his grave in the early 1800s without any of his peers being the wiser.” (Robert Lohr, “The Chess Machine,” http://www.cclapcenter.com/2007/10/book_review_the_chess_machine.html)

“The argument is in fact also one between daily life and the great collective project, most often (and too rapidly) assimilated to the difference between anarchism and Marxism. A certain anarchism, indeed, by emphasizing a freedom from state power which does not so much involve a seizure and destruction of the latter as the exploration of zones and enclaves beyond its reach, would seem to valorize a life in the present and in the everyday, a conception of temporality rather different from the strategies of large-scale anti-capitalist struggle as the perspective of Capital would seem to impose them. Such differences come to a head around the now problematical idea of revolution: its crisis is not only the practical one, namely the absence of agency and indeed of any conception of what “coming to power” might mean for movements


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which are not parties and in a situation in which power is a network of cybernetic grids. It is a crisis centering on the very notion of time itself, an opposition between the here and now of perpetual revolt—indeed, of daily life itself as revolt and permanent revolution—and the old Left tradition of the Day, Sorel’s myth of the general strike, the dawning of Year I, the axial Event, the break that inaugurates a new era (of cultural revolution, of socialist construction, etc.).” (Frederic Jameson, Archaeologies of the Future: The Desire Called Utopia and Other Science Fictions. London and New York: Verso, 2007: 213.)

“It is important to remember that the idea of freedom was introduced into the debate of the war question after it had become quite obvious that we had reached a stage of technical development where the means of destruction were such as to exclude their rational use. In other words, freedom has appeared in this debate like a deus ex machine to justify what on rational grounds has become rather unjustifiable. Is it too much to read into the current rather hopeless confusion of issues and arguments a hopeful indication that a profound change in international relations may be about to occur, namely, the disappearance of war from the scene of politics even without a radical transformation of international relations and without an inner change of men’s hearts and minds? Could it not be that our present perplexity in this matter indicates our lack of preparedness for a disappearance of war, our inability to think in terms of foreign policy without having in mind this ‘continuation with other means’ as its last resort?” (Hannah Arendt, On Revolution. New York: Pelican Books, 1979: 14.)

“Shock as a component of experience is complemented by the motif of numbness – its opposite in a sense – and equally as constitutive of the psychic make-up in urban industrialism. Numbness – the shock repeated until it no becomes no longer a shock but the norm – causes insensibility, an effect of the psychic necessity to parry the blows and of the repetitive nature of labour. The human being transformed into an automaton – or machine appendage – is an extreme example of the novel social condition(ing): displaying simultaneously an alertness (a preparedness to perform) and a numbness (an emotional disinvestment). Living bodies have been transformed historically into deadly armatures, scaffolds, machines for work. It is this that Baudelaire has understood, as Benjamin comments in ‘Zentralpark’ (1938): Machinery in Baudelaire becomes a cipher of destructive forces. Such machinery is not least the human skeleton.” (Esther Leslie, Walter Benjamin: Overpowering Conformism. London: Pluto Press, 2000: 183.)


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“When society loses the community of the society of the myth, it must lose all the references of a really common language until the time when the rifts within the inactive community can be surmounted by the inauguration of the real historical community. Then art, which was the common language of social inaction, becomes independent art in the modern senses, emerging from its religious universe and becoming individual production of separate works, it too experiences the movement that dominates the history of the entirety of separate culture. The affirmation of its independence is the beginning of its disintegration.” (Guy Debord “Section 186” in The Society of the Spectacle. Detroit: Black and Red, 1983.)

“This returns us to the question posed by [Henri] Bergson’s fictional interlocutor. How are we supposed to grasp what exceeds the intelligence if we cannot think it? Bergson’s response develops a revealing metaphor. It is of the essence of reasoning to enclose us in the circle of the given. But action breaks open the circle. If you had never seen a man swim, you would perhaps say that swimming is something that is impossible, given that, in order to learn to swim, one has to start by entering the water, and in consequence one must already know how to swim. Reasoning always effectively fixes me to solid ground. But if, quite simply, I throw myself into the water without being afraid…I shall learn to swim. Bergson is saying that because the intelligence is constructed so as specifically to be able to comprehend matter, or discrete solids arranged in empty space, it is fruitless to try to reason one’s way out of the circle. Because the intelligence necessarily solidifies what it touches, all that one succeeds in doing is to push the boundaries of the circle outward; there is no breakout. Therefore (and this is the sense of the metaphor) actually doing it must in some sense precede the ability to explain the significance of it. Once one learns how to swim, one can move backward to an explanation of its relation to being able to walk, but it is not possible to get there from the second alone. What is necessary for our thinking, Bergson claims, is that it “makes the leap [faire le saut]”; the intelligence must be “pushed outside of its realm” by an “act of will”.” (Roger Foster, Adorno: The Recovery of Experience. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 2008: 129.)

“Pride, the supreme value, appears when suffering is infinite; it is nothing more than the permanent, unflinching consciousness through experienced pain of one’s implicit capacity for suffering. Unhappiness and pride are at the origin of the soul. The first creates the “wound,” the


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second, refusing any remedies, explores its features, the sum of unhappiness it can bear. This is why Satan, after his arrogant declaration, doesn’t stop groaning and immediately seems to contradict himself. ‘I have only the soul, the soul with its burning and barren breath, which consumes itself and tears itself apart. The soul! but I can do nothing, I can barely brush a kiss, I can only sense, see, but I cannot touch, cannot take … If only I were a beast, an animal, a reptile … their desires are satisfied, their passions are assuaged. You want a soul, Arthur? A soul, but have you considered it carefully? Do you want to be like other men? … to sicken with despair, to fall from illusions to reality? A soul! but do you want sobs of dumb despair, madness, idiocy? You would fall into hope. A soul – then you want to be a man, a little more than a tree, a little less than a dog?’” (Jean-Paul Sartre (trans. by Carol Cosman), The Family Idiot: 1821-1857, Volume 1. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1981: 242.)

“…we live within that language above an abyss, most of us with the steadiness of blind men. But when we regain our sight, we or our descendants, shall we not fall into that abyss? And we cannot know if the sacrifice of those who will perish in that fall will be enough to close it again.”

(Gershom Scholem quoted in Stephane Mosès (Translated by Barbara Harshav), The Angel of History: Rosenzweig, Benjamin, Scholem (Cultural Memory in the Present). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2008: 168.)

“Allegory is extravagant, an expenditure of surplus value; it is always in excess. Croce found it “monstrous” precisely because it encodes two contents within one form. Still, the allegorical supplement is not only an addition, but also a replacement. It takes the place of an earlier meaning, which is thereby either effaced or obscured. Because allegory usurps its object it comports within itself a danger, the possibility of perversion: that what is “merely apprehended” to the work of art be mistaken for its “essence.” Hence the vehemence with which modern aesthetics – formalist aesthetics in particular – rails against the allegorical supplement, for it challenges the security of the foundations upon which aesthetics is erected.” (Craig Owens (Edited by Scott Bryson, Barbara Kruger, Lynne Tillman, Jane Weinstock), Beyond Recognition: Representation, Power and Culture. Los Angeles and Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1994: 64.)


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“Anyone who cannot cope with life while he is alive needs one hand to ward off a little his despair over his fate … but with his other hand he can jot down what he sees among the ruins, for he sees differently and more things than the others; after all, he is dead in his own lifetime and the real survivor.” (Franz Kafka, Diaries, cited in Hannah Arendt (ed.), Walter Benjamin: Illuminations. New York: Schocken Books, 1969: 19.)

“But the moral of the story was of course this: against the guard dog, trained one-sidedness quickly found its target. The weak of society, the oppressed, are hardly leopard cubs with an instinct for the leap at the throat. But it’s been known to happen: not only David, the still fragile boy, does best to strike Goliath at his weakest point.” (Ernst Bloch (Anthony A. Nassar, Translator), Traces. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Perss, 2007: 31.)

“If I make my contribution to truth, some Rat Bohemian down the line will notice and appreciate it. She’ll be sitting in a city strewn with rats and rat carcasses and come across my petite observation. That’s the most amazing relationship in the universe. The girl on rat bones who knows that she is not alone. She is not American.” (Sarah Schulman, Rat Bohemia, cited in Dianne Chisholm, Queer Constellations: Subcultural Space in the Wake of the City. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2005: 242.)

“The dissolution of the notion of an historical semantics is, at the same time, the dissolution of the dream of a method by which history in general can be endowed with any sense at all. The historian is liberated from having to say anything about the past; the past is only an occasion for [the] invention of ingenious ‘melodies’. Historical representation becomes once more all story, no plot, no explanations, no ideological implications at all – that is to say, ‘myth’ in its original meaning as Nietzsche understood it, ‘fabulation.’.” (Hayden White, quoted in Keith Jenkins, At the Limits of History: Essays on Theory and Practice. London and New York: Routledge, 2009: 272.)

“A story? No. No stories, never again.” (Blanchot, The Madness of the Day: 18.)


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“359 Nonlinear. Discontinuous. Collage-like. An assmeblage. As is already more than self-evident.” (David Shields, Reality Hunger: A Manifesto. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2010: 121.)

“An adult relieves his heart from its terrors and doubles happiness by turning it into a story. A child creates the entire event anew and starts again right from the beginning. Here, perhaps, is the deepest explanation for the two meanings of the German word Spielen: the element of repetition is what is actually common to them. Not a ‘doing as if’ but a ‘doing the same thing over and over again’, the transformation of a shattering experience into habit—that is the essence of play.” (Walter Benjamin, “Selected Writings, Volume 2,” quoted in Barbara Johnson, “Passage Work,” in Beatrice Hanssen (Ed.) Walter Benjamin and The Arcades Project. London and New York: Continuum, 2006: 81.)

“There is some dispute over the issue of the position he assumed during the fall, the position he maintained in his suspended state. Was this position intended to reflect the body posture of a particular man who was photographed falling from the north tower of the World Trade Center, headfirst, arms at his sides, one leg bent, a man set forever in free fall against the looming background of the column panels in the tower? Free fall is the fall of the body within the atmosphere without a drag-producing device such as a parachute. It is the ideal falling motion of a body that is subject only to the earth’s gravitational field. She did not read further but knew at once which photograph the account referred to. It hit her hard when she first saw it, the day after, in the newspaper. The man headlong, the towers behind him. The mass of the towers filled the frame of the picture. The man falling, the towers contiguous, she thought, behind him. The enormous soaring lines, the vertical column stripes. The man with blood on his shirt, she thought, or burn marks, and the effect of the columns behind him, the composition, she thought, darker stripes for the nearest tower, the north, lighter for the other, and the mass, the immensity of it, and the man set almost precisely between the rows of darker and lighter stripes. Headlong, free fall, she thought, and this picture burned a hole in her mind and heart, dear God, he was a falling angel and his beauty was horrific.” (Don DeLillo, Falling Man New York: Scribner, 2007: 222-223.)


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“Subjectivity, like an angel falling into the depths, is brought back by allegories, and is held fast in heaven, in God, by ponderaciòn misteriosa.” (Walter Benjamin (Translated by John Osborne), The Origin of German Tragic Drama. London: Verso, 1985: 235.)

“Apocalypse. A disquieting feature of this annual exhibition—to which the patients themselves were not invited—was the marked preoccupation of the paintings with the theme of world cataclysm, as if these long-incarcerated patients had sensed some seismic upheaval within the minds of their doctors and nurses. As Catharine Austin walked around the converted gymnasium these bizarre images, with their fusion of Eniwetok and Luna Park, Freud and Elizabeth Taylor, reminded her of the slides of exposed spinal levels in Travis’s office. They hung on the enameled walls like the codes of insoluble dreams, the keys to a nightmare in which she had begun to play a more willing and calculated role. Primly she buttoned her white coat as Dr. Nathan approached, holding his gold-tipped cigarette to one nostril. ‘Ah, Dr. Austin…What do you think of them? I see there’s War in Hell.’” (J.G. Ballard, The Atrocity Exhibition. San Francisco: RE/Search Publications, 1990: 9.)

“Watch out: it is surely a method of involving you gradually, capturing you in the method of involving you gradually before you realize it—a trap. Or perhaps the author still has not made up his mind, just as you, reader, for that matter, are not sure what you would most like to read: whether it is the arrival […], or else a flashing of lights and sounds, which would give you a sense of being alive today, in the world where people today believe it is a pleasure to be alive.” (Calvino, If on a winter’s night a traveler: 12.)

“Just as all language, all writing, every poetico performative or theoretico-informative text dispatches, sends itself, allows itself to be sent, so today’s missiles, whatever their underpinnings may be, allow themselves to be described more readily than ever as dispatches in writing (code, inscription, trace, and so on)…. It recalls (exposes, explodes) that which, in writing includes the power of the death machine.” (Jacques Derrida, “No Apocalypse, Not Now (Full Speed Ahead, Seven Missiles, Seven Missives,” quoted in Karen E. Lawrence, Techniques for Living: Fiction and Theory in the Work of Christine Brooke-Rose. Columbus, OH: Ohio State University Press, 2010: 124.)


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“Colonel Lucas: Your mission is to proceed up the Nung River in a Navy patrol boat. Pick up Colonel Kurtz's path at Nu Mung Ba, follow it and learn what you can along the way. When you find the Colonel, infiltrate his team by whatever means available and terminate the Colonel's command. Willard: Terminate the Colonel? General Corman: He's out there operating without any decent restraint, totally beyond the pale of any acceptable human conduct. And he is still in the field commanding troops. Civilian: Terminate with extreme prejudice. Colonel Lucas: You understand, Captain, that this mission does not exist, nor will it ever exist..” (quote from Francis Ford Coppola, Apocalypse Now. American Zoetrope, 1979: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0078788/quotes.)

[The Day of the Dead] “Deathday in Mexico. Day of the greatest fun and merriment. The day when Mexico provokes death and makes fun of it – death is but a step to another cycle of life – why then fear it! Hat stores display skulls wearing top and straw hats. Candy takes the shape of skulls in sugar and coffins of confectionery. Parties go to the cemetery, taking food to the dead. Parties play and sing on the graves. And the food of the dead is eaten by the living.” (Sergei Eisenstein, The Film Sense, cited in Ackerly and Clipper, A Companion to Under the Volcano: 418.)

“Hence, lamentable victims, get you hence! Hells yawn beneath, your road is straight and steep. Descendez, descendez, lamentables victims, Descendez le chemin de l’enfer éternel.” (Charles Baudelaire, “Delphine and Hippolyte,” quoted in Georges Poulet, Exploding Poetry: Baudelaire/Rimbaud. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1984: 4.)

“Let me refuse solutions, refuse to be comforted…” (Leonard Cohen, The Spice Box of the Earth. Toronto, ON: McClelland & Stewart, 1972: 81.)


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Chapter Two: Fire and Ice; Horses and Dogs

“Some say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice. From what I've tasted of desire I hold with those who favor fire. But if it had to perish twice, I think I know enough of hate To say that for destruction ice Is also great And would suffice.” (Robert Frost, “Fire and Ice,” http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/fire-and-ice/)

“Initially there is but one principle: to move. No law of motion, in other words, no special will, nothing specific, nothing partaking of order. Chaos and anarchy, a turbid jumble. The intangible – nothing is heavy, nothing light (light-heavy); nothing is white, nothing black, nothing red, nothing yellow, nothing blue, only an approximation of grey…No here, no there, only everywhere. No long-short, only everywhere. No far-near, no yesterday, today, tomorrow, tomorrow-yesterday.” (Paul Klee cited in John David Dewsbury and Nigel Thrift, “’Genesis Eternal’: After Paul Klee,” Ian Buchanan and Gregg Lambert, Deleuze and Space. Toronto and Buffalo: University of Toronto Press, 2005: 92.)


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“Perspectives must be fashioned that displace and estrange the world, reveal it to be, with its rifts and crevices, as indigent and distorted as it will appear one day in the messianic light.” (Theodor Adorno (translated by E.F.N. Jephcott), Minima Moralia: Reflections on a Damaged Life. London and New York: Verso, 2005: 247.)

“only the most rudimentary sort of behavior is necessary to put us on the scent; “a right good salvo of barks,” a few “strong wrinkles” puckering the skin between the ears, are all we ask.” (Marianne Moore, “Picking and Choosing,” quoted in Resula, Modernism and the Poetic Inspiration: xi.)

“The next day, as soon as I wake up, I know that something has changed. Then I realize that the ship’s sideways shifting, to which I have become accustomed, has ceased. Today, I remember, we have come to our first stopping place, called Halifax. When I come out on deack, I see a bit of a world that returns all my sense of loss to me like a sudden punch in the stomach. The sea has narrowed to a tray, wide waterway, on the shores of which I can make out a muddy land, some marshlike vegetation, and a few isolated houses.” (Eva Hoffmann, Lost in Translation: A Life in a New Language. New York, NY: Penguin Books, 1989: 92.)

“I am Jack Walser, an American citizen. I joined the circus of Colonel Kearney in order to delight my reading public with accounts of a few nights at the circus and, as a clown, performed before the Tsar of All the Russians, to great applause. (What a story!) I was derailed by brigands in Transbaikalia and lived as a wizard among the natives for awhile. (God, what a story!) Let me introduce my wife, Mrs Sophie Walser, who formerly had a successful career on the music-hall stage under the name of – ‘Oh!’ Unbeknownst to the lovers, midnight, that moveable feast, rolled over the taiga at that moment, disturbing nothing in its passage in spite of the era it was dragging in its wake. Precipitating in ignorance and bliss into the next century, there, after it was over, Walser took himself apart and put himself together again.” (Angela Carter, Nights at the Circus. New York: Penguin Books, 1986: 294.)


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“No. He wasn’t American.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 34.)

“What then is the American, this new man?” (Hector St. John de Crèvecoeur, ca. 1776., quoted in Ronald Wright, What Is America? A Short History of the New World Order. Toronto: Alfred A. Knopf, Canada, 2008: 1.)

“It was the custom of the Greeks For passengers over sea to carry Both monkeys full of tricks And funny dogs to make them merry.” (La Fontaine, The Monkey and the Dolphin, quoted in Jacques Derrida (Michel Lisse, Marie-Louise Mallet, and Ginette Michaud, Editors, and Geoffrey Bennington, Translator), The Beast & The Sovereign: Volume 1. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 2009: 254.)

“Reading the Meditations as a journey of the soul helps us to appreciate that Descartes’ search for a foundation or Archimedean point is more than a device to solve metaphyscial and epistemological problems. It is the quest for some fixed point: some stable rock upon which we can secure our lives against the vicissitudes that constantly threaten us. The specter that hovers in the background of the journey is not just radical epistemological skepticism but the dread of madness and chaos where nothing is fixed, where we can neither touch bottom nor support ourselves on the surface. With a chilling clarity Descartes leads us with an apparent and ineluctable necessity to a grand and seductive Either/Or. Either there is some support for our being, a fixed foundation for our knowledge, or we cannot escape the forces of darkness that envelop us with madness, with intellectual and moral chaos.” (J.M. Bernstein, Beyond Objectivism and Relativism, quoted in Joel Whitebrook, Perversion and Utopia: A Study in Psychoanalysis and Critical Theory. London and Cambridge, Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 1995: 222.)

“[…] Suzanne happened upon a work by Marcel Duchamp called Box-in-a-Suitcase. She stopped. She stared and stared at it, under its protective Plexiglass, as she turned insensible to her surroundings. Her mind went lively with a sense of discovery. If she had to sum up the way she lived, it would be Box-in-a-Suitcase.


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Calvin Tomkins wrote of Marcel Duchamp: “The Anschluss in 1937, the Munich Conference and Hitler’s annexation of the Sudentenland, the Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact, and the menacing build-up of Germany’s armed forces all pointed to the inevitability of conflict, which Europeans awaited with fatalistic resignation. Duchamp, like many others, was packing his bags.” (Whitney Otto, A Collection of Beauties at the Height of their Popularity. New York, NY: Random House, 2003: 135.)

“‘Plingen, plangen, aufgefangen Swingen, swangen at my side, Pootle, swootle, off to Bootle, Nemesis, a pleasant ride,’ said the Consul mysteriously, and added with heroism, glancing about him: ‘It’s really an extraordinary nice day to take a trip.’” (Lowry, Under the Volcano, 192.)

“THE CIRCUITOUS PATH TO THE BEAUTIFUL.—If the beautiful is to be identified as that which gives pleasure—and thus sang the Muses once—the useful is often the necessary circuitous path to the beautiful, and has a perfect right to spurn the short-sighted censure of men who live for the moment who will not wait, and who think that they can reach all good things without ever taking a circuitous path.” (Nietzsche, Human, All-To-Human: 319.)

“Talita is very happy with Traveler, with the circus, grooming the counting cat before it goes on stage, keeping books for the Manager. Sometimes in her modest way she thinks that she is really closer than Traveler to those elemental depths that worry him, but metaphysical contexts upset her somewhat and she ends up convincing herself that he is the only one capable of making a puncture that will release the black and oily flow. It all floats around a little, dresses up words or patterns, calls itself otherness, calls itself laughing or loving, and it’s also the circus and life to call it by its most external and fateful names and who the hell is your aunt anyway.” (Cortazar, Hopscotch: 233.)


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“At the very beginning Thomas More designated utopia as a place, an island in the distant South Seas. This designation underwent changes later so that it left space and entered time …. With Thomas more the wishland was still ready, on a distant island, but I am not there. On the other hand, when it is transposed into the future, not only am I not there, but utopia itself is also not with itself. This island does not even exist. But it is not something like nonsense or absolute fancy; rather it is not yet in the sense of a possibility; that it could be there if we could only do something for it. Not only if we travel there, but in that we travel there the island utopia arised out of the sea of the possible—utopia, but with new contents.” (Ernst Bloch and Theodor W. Adorno, “Something’s Missing: A Discussion between Ernst Bloch and Theodor W. Adorno on the Contradictions of Utopian Longing,” in Ernst Bloch, The Utopian Function of Art and Literature: Selected Essays. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1988: 3.)

“[T]o travel implies movement between fixed positions, a site of departure, a point of arrival, the knowledge of an itinerary. It also intimates an eventual return, a potential homecoming. Migrancy, on the other hand, involves a movement in which neither the points of departure nore those of arrival are immutable or certain. It calls for a dwelling in language, in histories, in identities that are constantly subject to mutation. Always in transit, the promise of a homecoming – completing the story, domesticating the detour – becomes an impossibility.” (Iain Chambers, Migrancy, Culture & Identity, quoted in Caren Kaplan, Questions of Travel: Postmodern Discourses of Displacement. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 1996: 139.)

“I played hopscotch at the border men in green smile their green smiles never ask me for papers, my skin is light I crossed the border at least two hundred times border linea abstract barrier between my two concrete worlds.” (Gina Valdes, Comiendo Lumbre: Eating Fire, cited in Frederico Campbell (Debra A. Castillo, Translator), Tijuana: Stories on the Border. Los Angeles & Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1995: 1.)

“Theory of culture, theory of society, symbolic systems in general – art, religion, family, language – it is all developed while bringing the same scheme to light. And the movement whereby each opposition is set up to make sense is the movement through which the couple is destroyed. A universal battlefield. Each time, a war is let loose. Death is always at work.”


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(Hélène Cixous, ‘Sorties’, quoted in Morag Shiach, Hélène Cixous, A Politics of Writing. London and New York: Routledge, 1991: 7.)

“For today it is infinitely more difficult to commit crimes, and thus these crimes are so subtle that we can hardly perceive or comprehend them, though all around us, in our neighborhoods, they are committed daily….Crimes that require a sharp mind, that tap our minds and less so our senses, those that most deeply affect us—there no blood flows, but rather the slaughter is granted a place within the morals and customs of a society whose fragile nerves quake in the face of any such beastliness.” (Ingeborg Bachmann, ‘Book of Franza,’ quoted in Michaela M. Grobbel, Enacting Past and Present: The Memory Theaters of Djuna Barnes, Ingeborg Bachmann, and Marguerite Duras. Lanham, Boulder, New York, Toronto, Plymouth UK: Lexington Books, 2009: 82-83.)

“We do not need obscure fragments of Heraclitus to prove that being reveals itself as war to philsophical thought, that war does not only affect [philosophical thought] as the most patent fact, but as the very patency, or the truth, of the real.” (Emmanuel Levinas, Totality and Infinity, quoted in Hanssen, Critique of Violence: 136.)

“WAR IS PART OF THE INTERCOURSE OF THE HUMAN RACE We say therefore war belongs not to the province of Arts and Sciences, but to the province of social life. It is a conflict of great interests which is settled by bloodshed, and only in that is it different from others. It should be better, instead of comparing it with any Art, to liken it to business competition, which is also a conflict of human interests and activities; and it is still more like State policy, which again, on its part, may be looked upon as a kind of business competition on a great scale. Besides, State policy is the womb in which War is developed, in which its outlines lie hidden in a rudimentary state, like the qualities of living creatures in their germs.” (Clausewitz, On War: 96-97.)

“When the classic work on the history of women comes to be written, the biggest force for change in their lives will turn out to be war.”


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(Max Lerner cited in Henthorn, From Suburbs to Submarines: 218.)

“Number 04056239!” He shouted, “It’s your turn! Front and center!” One of the tanks pulled itself out of the line and drove up in front of us. It was a big slab of a thing, fully ten meters long and four wide. It was maybe a meter thick, and rode about twenty centimeters off the floor on treads that were nothing but unconnected bars that floated out of two slots in the front of the tank. They placed themselves in front of the machine as it floated over them, then lifted off the floor and went back into slots in the back of the tank once it had passed by. They didn’t seem to be connected to anything at all! Some kind of magnetic trick, I guessed.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 2.)

“But: “The age of reason is over.” Said the old soldier, the Czech who lived on the floor above me. He was, God help us all, an alchemist and distilled a demented logic in his attic instills of his own devising. “In this city, you will meet immortality, evil, and death,” he assured me with prophetic exhilaration. His protuberant eyes were veined with red like certain kinds of rare marble. He urged me to meditate upon the vivid line of the whirling universe.” (Angela Carter, The Passion of New Eve. New York and London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1977: 13.)

“One Hallowe’en she and a fag friend dressed up and went to bars. He was Genet in prison, she was James Joyce. At some point she realized that she was passing for a guy, that men were cruising her and that she could inhabit the confusion for as long as it pleased her. It occurred to her to wonder how she could achieve boy drag so easily. She had become a type of random dagger. She was a pick-up passenger. Her romance caught a California train, racing toward a heathen sunrise.” (Millie Wilson, “A Fiction of Masculinity,” in Eileen Myles & Liz Kotz (editors), The New Fuck You: Adventures in Lesbian Reading. New York: Semiotext(e), 1995: 221.)

“In the complexity and entanglement of wholes, to which the human particle belongs, this satellite-like mode of existence never entirely disappears. A particular being not only acts as an element of a shapeless and structureless whole (a part of the world of unimportant “acquaintances” and chatter), but also as a peripheral element orbiting around a nucleus where being hardens. What the lost child had found in the self-assured existence of the all-powerful beings who took care of him is now sought by the abandoned man wherever knots and


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concentrations are formed throughout a vast incoherence. Each particular being delegates to the group of those situated at the center of the multitudes the task of realizing the inherent totality of “being.” He is content to be a part of a total existence, which even in the simplest cases retains a diffuse character. Thus relatively stable wholes are produced, whose center is a city, in its early form a corolla that encloses a double pistil of sovereign and god.” (Georges Bataille, “The Labyrinth,” quoted in Georges Bataille, Visions of Excess: Selected writings, 1927-1939. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 1985: 175.)

“Nothing will surprise me any more, nor be too wonderful For belief, now that the lord upon Olympus, father Zeus, Dimmed the daylight and made darkness come upon us in the noon And the sunshine. So limp terror has descended on mankind. After this, men can believe anything. They can expect anything. Be not astonished any more, although you see beasts of the dry land exchange with dolphins, and assume their place in the watery pastures of the sea, and beasts who loved the hills find the oceans’s crashing waters sweeter than the bulk of land. (Achilochus of Paros c. 7th century B.C.E., cited in Richard Latimore (trans.), Greek Lyrics Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1971: 3.)

“It it is true that at the heart of power relations and as a permanent condition of their existence there is an insubordination and a certain essential obstinacy on the part of the principles of freedom, then there is no relationship of power without the means of escape or possible flight. Every power relationship implies, at least in potential, a strategy of struggle, in which the two forces are not superimposed, do not lose their specific nature, or do not finally become confused. Each constitutes for the other a kind of permanent term, its final moment (and the victory of one of the two adversaries) when stable mechanisms replace the free play of atagonistic reactions. Through such mechanism once can direct, in a fairly constant manner and with reasonable certainty, the conduct of others. For a relationship of confrontation, from the moment it is not a struggle to the death, the fixing of a power relationship becomes a target – at one and the same time its fulfillment and its suspension.” (Michel Foucault quoted in Beatrice Hannssen, Critique of Violence: Between Poststructrualism and Critical Theory. London and New York: Routledge, 2000: 156.)


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“This world contradicts itself. Common sense and science purge themselves from this contradiction; but philosophical thought begins with the recognition that the facts do not correspond to the concepts imposed by common sense and scientific reason—in short, with the refusal to accept them. To the extent that these concepts disregard the fatal contradictions which make up reality, they abstract from the very process of reality. The negation which dialectic applies to them is not only a critique of a conformist logic, which denies the reality of its own contradictions; it is also a critique of the given state of affairs on its own grounds—of the established system of life, which denies its own promises and potentialities.” (Herbert Marcuse, Reason and Revolution: Hegel and the Rise of Social Theory. Boston: Beacon Press, 1960: vii.)

“The late summer marks the end of my emotional self, the disappearance of all wounds of self-esteem, of all that builds the torment, the pleasure of so-called private life. The other, whomever he or she may be, becomes my sole concern.” (Pierre Guyotat (Translated by Nora Wedell), Coma. Los Angeles, CA: Semiotext(e), 2010: 63.)

“Indeed, if Gustave is to be believed, everyone does evil except the malicious. They are merely victims of mankind. The sweat evil through every pore, but bound as they are, how could they commit it? And then, the evil that devours them, after all, has made them. Starting from this, everything is turned around: blackness and greatness of soul are the same thing; malice does not arise just any place, it presupposes first that the chosen have suffered a profound justice – which in the universe of the other would be the most inflexible justice – and then that they endure this injustice like the most agonizing passion; hence their exquisite sensibilities and lucid consciousness. This is still not enough; the martyr, the disinherited man must become on oath the Lord of Nonbeing; he must assume his frustration and re-externalize it in an impotent and conscious dream of being that lord who abolishes being through a universal conflagration. The malicious man, in short, must make himself the Prince of the Imaginary against the real which is crushing him, and he must have enough constancy and strength to preserve this title until death, enough imaginative power to build nothingness into a fabulous opera by vowing every moment of his life to use fantasmagoria to disqualify reality. In brief, in Gustave’s world, he is not malicious who wants to be – only the best and the most unhappy can have this honor. The young boy knew only one candidate who fulfilled these strict conditions: himself. So he designed selflove or self-esteem. This is as it should be; continually passing from humiliation to an impotent bitter pride, the malicious man suffers because he cannot suffer himself.” (Jean-Paul Sartre (trans. By Carol Cosman), The Family Idiot: Gustave Flaubert: 1821-1857, Volume 1. London and Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 438)


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“ffyrst I looked me be-hynde And gan enqueryn off my mynde, To taken me my swerd in haste, Or I eny ferther paste; Gaff also to hyre in charge, ffor to tak me my targe; ffor shortly, leyser hadde I noon, Other Amure to done vp-on. And, lyk to my comaundement, She too hem me off good entent, In hope they sholde me avaylle. And I be-gan hem [Envy, Treason, and Detraction [to asaayylle.]” (Guillaume de Deguileville (John Lydgate, trans.), The Pilgrimage of the Life of Man. Cited in Susan K. Hagen, Allegorical Remembrance: A Study of The Pilgrimage of the Life of Man As Medieval Treatise on Seeing and Remembering. Athens and London: University of Georgia Press, 1990: 87.)

“Small Excursion Even he who falls asleep grows lonely, though he can certainly be like someone taking a journey. When we are awake, we prefer to sit with the wall behind us, our gaze directed at the establishment. But how astonishing: when falling asleep, most turn toward the wall, even though in so doing they turn their backs to the dark room which is becoming unknown. It is as if the wall suddenly attracted, paralyzing the room, as if sleep discovered something in the wall that otherwise is the exclusive prerogative of a better death. It is as if, in addition to disturbance and strangeness, sleep too enrolled one in death; here, however, the stage appears differently, opening the dialectical semblance of home …. For the pride of departure, in which the happiness and the pride of dying were already at work, in here distinctly filled with a triumph of an arrival. Especially if the ship arrives with music; then, within the Kitsch (not the petit-bourgeois kind) something of the jubilation of the (possible) resurrection of the dead conceals itself.” (Ernst Bloch, Spirit of Utopia, quoted in Gerhard Richter, Thought-Images: Frankfurt School Writers’Reflections from Damaged Life (Cultural Memory in the Present). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2007: 98.)

“By the end of the century, the dream, clearly of bourgeois origins, (and bourgeois in the latent wish that it expressed) had in fact become “collective,” spreading to the working class as


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well. The mass marketing of dreams within a class system that prevented their realization in anything more than the distorted form of dream symbols was quite obviously a growth industry. In his earliest notes, Benjamin interpreted “kitsch,” the cluttered, aesthetic style of this mass marketing, as bourgeois class guilt: “the overproduction of commodities; the bad conscience of the producers.” The social goal of course was material abundance, which is why the dream functioned legitimately on the manifest level of collective wish image. But the commodity form of the dream generated the expectation that the international socialist goal of mass affluence could be delivered by national, capitalist means, and that expectation was a fatal blow to revolutionary working-class politics.” (Susan Buck-Morss, Dialectics of Seeing: Walter Benjamin and the Arcades Project. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1991: 284.)

“The initial fulfillment of messianic hope in Christianity was political in nature. As consequence of events under Constantine, the old apocalyptic martyr eschatology was transformed into an imperial theology. This transposition can only be understood apocalyptically, even if historically speaking the early Christian apologists had already prepared the way. Those who with Christ had fought against the political demons and had suffered under them, began in the Roman empire after Constantine, with Christ to be victorious politically and to rule religiously. The Constantinian turn of events made of once persecuted Christianity, first the permitted, and then the dominant religion in the Roman Empire. From this there developed Byzantinism Tsarism in the east, and in the west the theo-political ideal of the Holy Empire which was supposed to endure to the end of time.” (Kornel Zathureczky, The Messianic Disruption of Trinitarian Theology. New York and Toronto: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2009: 3.)

“… the simplest definition of God and of religion lies in the idea that truth and meaning are one and the same thing. The death of God is the end of the idea that posits truth and meaning as the same thing. And I would add that the death of Communism also implies the separation between meaning and truth as far as history is concerned. “The meaning of history” has two meanings: on the one hand “orientation,” history goes somewhere; and then history has a meaning, which is the history of human emancipation by way of the proletariat, etc. In fact, the entire age of Communism was a period where the conviction that it was possible to take rightful political decisions existed; we were, at that moment, driven by the meaning of history… Then the death of Communism became the second death of God but in the territory of history.” (Alain Badiou quoted in Slavoj Žižek, First As Tragedy, Then As Farce. London and New York: Verso, 2009: 149.)


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“[…] give us a wipe for the love of Jesus […].” (Samuel Beckett, “Eneug II,” David Wheatley (ed.), Selected Poems: 1930-1988. London: Faber and Faber, 2009: 17.)

“’Eat, poor poet! Go on, eat!’ she said. With the movements of a famished beast, the poet seized the horrible stinking piece of rotten meat in his claws and carried it to his jaw where, for an instant, I could see it hanging between his dog-like fangs… But all of a sudden there were roars and bounds in the excited cage. All I could see were naked torsos mingling, pressed together, clasped by long thin arms and torn by teeth and claws with twisted faces tearing at the meat! And then I could see nothing… But I could hear the sound of struggle at the back of the cage and the harsh, wheezing panting of racked chests, the fall of bodies, the trampling of flesh, the cracking of bones, the dull thuds and the groans of dying men! More barks… more death rattles… and then silence and nothingness!” (Octave Mirbeau, The Torture Garden (Complete and Unexpurgated). London, Washington and Frankfurt: Olympia Press, 2009: 83.)

“The greater the shock factor in particular impressions, the more vigilant consciousness has to be in screeing against stimuli; the more efficiently it does so, the less these impressions enter long experience [Ehfahrung] and the more they correspond to the concept of isolated experience [Erlebnis]. Perhaps the special achievement of shock defense is the way it assigns an incident a precise point in time in consciousness, at the cost of the integrity of the incident’s contents. This would be a peak achievement of the intellect, it would turn the incident into an isolated experience [Erlebneis]. Without reflection, there would be nothing but the sudden start, occasionally pleasant but usually distasteful, which, according to Freud, confirms the failure of the shock defense.” (Walter Benjamin, “On Some Motifs in Charles Baudelaire,” quoted in Peter Bush, Ken Hirschkop, Scott McCracken, and Bertrand Taitin, Benjamin’s Arcades: An unGuided Tour. Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press, 2005: 51.)

“We cannot go directly from capitalist to revolutionary subjectivity: the abstraction, the foreclosure of others, the blindness to the other’s suffering and pain, has first to be broken in a


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gesture of taking the risk and reaching directly out to the suffering other—a gesture which, since it shatters the very kernel of our identity cannot fail to appear extremely violent.” (Slavoj Žižek, “Lenin’s Choice,” in Jodi Dean, Žižek’s Politics. New York and London: Routledge, 2006: 202.)

“The only philosophy which can be responsibly practiced in the face of despair is the attempt to contemplate all things as they would present themselves from the standpoint of redemption. Knowledge has no light but that shed on the world by redemption: all else is reconstruction, mere technique. Perspectives must be fashioned that displace and estrange the world, reveal it to be, with its rifts and crevices, as indigent and distorted as it will appear one day in the messianic light. To gain such perspectives without velleity or violence, entirely from felt contact with its objects—this alone is the task of thought.” (Theodor W. Adorno, Minima Moralia, quoted in Richard Wolin, Labyrinths: Explorations in the Critical History of Ideas. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2004: 53.)

“We have rarely been closer to hell on earth.” (Iain Boal, T.J. Clark Joseph Matthews, Michael Watts, Afflicted Powers: Capital and Spectacle in a New Age of War. London and New York: Verso, 2006: 175.)

“The inevitable pluralism of readings, which is by no means unmonitored but on the contrary rendered transparent, only reflects the structure of open societies. It provides an opportunity to clarify one’s own identity-forming traditions in their ambivalences. This is precisely what is needed for the critical appropriation of ambiguous traditions, that is, for the development of a historical consciousness that is equally incompatible with closed images of history that have a secondary quasi-natural character and with all forms of conventional, that is, uniformly and prerelexively shared identity.” (Michael S. Roth, The Ironist’s Cage: Memory, Trauma, and the Construction of History. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1995: 14.)

“Language shows clearly that memory is not an instrument for exploring the past but its theatre. It is the medium of past experience, as the ground is the medium in which dead cities lie interred. He who seeks to approach his own buried past must conduct himself like a man digging. This confers the tone and bearing of genuine reminiscences. He must not be afraid to


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return again and again to the same matter; to scatter it as one scatters earth, to turn it over as one turns over soil.” (Walter Benjamin, One-Way Street and Other Writings, quoted in Graeme Gilloch, Myth and Metropolis: Walter Benjamin and the City. Cambridge: Polity Press, 1996: 70.)

“Muldoon: No, the picnic is over, you've told your last lie. You're knee deep in stolen jewelry. You're involved in the Dexter Murder. You've been trying to obstruct justice all along the line. Now you're gonna tell me what I want to know or so help me if it's the last thing I do in this department, I'll get you twenty years. Now that's the truth Sonny Boy, and you know I'm not bluffing. Who's Henderson? Who's Henderson?” Frank Niles: Stoneman! It's Doctor Stoneman.” (Dialogue from The Naked City, quoted from 1MDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0040636/quotes)

“An analysis of state terrorism must be carried out at different levels. At the national level, the state may become an instrument designed to control through fear its subject population. Regime terror involves the systematic use of torture and the rise of military and police forces engaged in an internal war against a subject population. This form of state terrorism may also be waged through shadow organizations, death squads, and the like that have no official power but that are clearly linked with the national elite. However, to focus on regime terror is often deceptive. To cast the issue of terrorism as the abuse of state power by political deviants may be to ignore the more endemic, taken-for-granted, higher forms of sanctioned violence that avoid the terrorist label. It may also ignore state structural imperatives (expressed in policy and action, including the threat or use of force) designed to preserve a transnational market system.” (William D. Perdue, Terrorism and the State: A Critique of Domination Through Fear. New York, Westport, and London: Praeger Publishers, 1989: 19.)

“For a wide variety of reasons, it is very far from my intention to express an opinion upon the value of human civilization. I have endeavored to guard myself against the enthusiastic prejudice which holds that our civilization is the most precious thing that we possess or could acquire and that its path will necessarily lead to heights of unimagined perfection. I can at least listen without indigation to the critic who is of the opinion that when one surveys the aims of cultural endeavor and the means it employs, one is bound to come to the conclusion that the whole effort is not worth the trouble, and that the outcome of it can only be a state of affairs which the individual will be unable to tolerate. My impartiality is made all the easier to me by


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my knowing very little about all these things….I have not the courage to rise up before my fellow-men as a prophet, and I bow to their reproach that I can offer no consolation.” (Sigmund Freud, Civilization and its Discontents, quoted in Joel Whitebrook, Perversion and Utopia: A Study in Psychoanalysis and Critical Theory. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1995: 19.)

“Goals of mass war began to shape the options in 1916 and 1938. These formed the “strong” version of the hegemonic choice that underwent a significant transformation from the First to the Second World War. In demanding the functional subordination of all German society— Ludendorff’s technocratic solution—in favor of a more efficient organization of production and destruction, industry and the military attempted to accommodate mass politics by promising to share the spoils of efficiency in due course; that is, they inflated war goals and opened the floodgates for a war of national purification. The National Socialists were no less totalitarian in their claims for organizing society. However, they aimed at a reconstruction of German society and of the German state on the basis of conquest, annihilation, and subjugation. At last, German society was to be autonomous, free from the vagaries of the market, and secure behind extended imperial borders. The National Socialist answer to the challenge of mass participation in politics and war and their response to the economic and social crisis of the interwar years consisted in a populist and militant form of hegemony. The resulting ideological strategy fused with the operational opportunism of the German military. The brutality and inhumanity of this choice seems to transcend historical explanation, and yet it is only comprehensible on the basis of strategic choices made to deal with Germany’s position of economic predominance in Europe and its dependence upon world markets, on the one hand, and to come to terms with the domestic conflict between the challenge of mass participation and the defense of elite rule, on the other.” (Michael Geyer, “German Strategy in the Age of Machine Warfare: 1914-1945,” in (Edited by Peter Paret), Makers of Modern Strategy: From Machiavelli to the Nuclear Age. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986: 596-597.)

“From one end of the Soviet Union to the other there was violence, though none greater than in Velikiye Luki. At the opposite pole, over a thousand miles away on the far southern shoulder of the country, lay Stalingrad. All that remained of that place. They had been under siege there for a month now. The last relief attempt, von Manstein’s relief attempt, had been beaten back far out in the snowy deserts. By Christmas the three hundred thousand men under siege had not begun to starve yet. But they could see it coming now, feel it tightening back toward their spines; in that sense it had begun. Even after a month the siege perimeter was still enormous; it was a small nation, like the small nation of Demyansk. Out at the edge, in the snowy desert, there was fighting, vicious


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though erratic, and on many days the fighting died down. In the city center, in the ghost of Stalingrad itself, there was no longer any fighting at all.” (Russ Schneider, Siege: A Novel of the Eastern Front, 1942. New York: Presidio Press, 2003: 353.)

“Thus the highest form of generalship is to balk the enemy’s plans; the next best is to prevent the junction of the enemy’s forces; the next in order is to attack the enemy’s army in the field; and the worst policy of all is to besiege walled cities.” (Sun Tzu, The Art of War. Filiquarian Publishing, LLC: 2006: 13.)

“…the city is also the body’s double. Like the house, it is also, in some way, a lived space, anthropomorphic. We can speak of a city as long as the totality of those who produce and live a collective construction constitute a collective anthropod body, which maintains in some way an identity as a ‘subject’. The city is therefore a site of identification…Thus the city has a somantic individuality and a membrane, which may be palpable (in the case for example of city walls), or impalpable, and which both surround and limit its somantic individuality.” (Geyer-Ryan, Fables of Desire: 159.)

“In his book the historian gave no such description. Simply that the muezzin climbed the minaret and from there summoned the faithful to prayer in the minaret and from there whether it was morning or noon, or sunset, for certainly in his opinion, such minute details would be of no historical interest and all the reader needed to know was that the author knew enough about the life of that time to be able to give them due mention. And for this we are indebted to him, for since his theme is that of battle and siege, and he is writing about the most virile of deeds, he could happily dispense with the raptures of prayer, which is the most submissive of situations, for he who prays, surrenders without a struggle and is for ever vanquished. Although, rather than ignore and fail to consider anything that might challenge these contradictions between prayer and warfare, we might here record, being so recent in time, and because of all the famous witnesses who are still alive, we might here record, we repeat, that much celebrated miracle at Ourique, when Christ appeared to the Portugese king, and the latter called out to Him, while the army, prostrate on the ground, began to pray, Appear before the infidels, Oh Lord, before the infidels, and not before me who believes in your powers, But Christ had no desire to appear before the Moors […]”


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(José Saramago (Translated by Giovanni Pontiero), The History of the Siege of Lisbon. San Diego, New York and London: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1998: 13.)

“I should simply like to list them [characteristics of sieges], more for their heuristic value than as a set of definitive conclusion: 1. The more integrated and elastic the defense, the greater the possibility of withstanding a siege. The more mobile the offense, the better the chance of besting the defenses. 2. The defense must disrupt attacking forces in the killing zone. […] 3. The defense must narrow the width of the killing zone, enabling them to concentrate their firepower. […] 4. Infantry crossing the killing zone is the Queen’s move of siege warfare, the point at which the offense is most vulnerable and, equally, the point at which the defense must stop the attackers if it is to remain viable. The attacking infantry must reduce the length of the killing zone […]. 5. Erwin Rommel said it somewhere: Position warfare (read Siege) is about destroying men, in contrast to mobile warfare, in which the emphasis is on destroying equipment. Therefore, casualty rates escalate during sieges. 6. The use of artillery, of whatever description, for the penetration of defenses has been ineffective. Artillery alone did not successfully penetrate defenses with a reliable consistency […] Artillery, generally, was a more effective weapon against attacking infantry and against other artillery. Furthermore, the most effective weapon against tanks trying to penetrate the defensive perimeter is not other tanks but artillery (in all its modern equivalents). […] 7. A small garrison with a high level will to combat and imaginative leadership can frustrate and even defeat a much larger attacking force. […] 8. An army’s diverse composition, as among the Crusaders on Malta, is less important in a siege than the belief system and/or clarity of goals that brings the diverse elements together in the first place. Likewise, any advantages produced by homogeneity are reduced if the troops are inexperienced, if there is a confusion of goals, and if leadership is unimaginative. […] 9. When the defense is denied mobility—internal troop movements, equipment repositioning, and resupply—the offense will win. […]


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10. The defense that loses or concedes domination, Malta being a brilliant exception, will lose if the offense is able to assume the dominant position. […] 11. The commander who defines or redefines, that is, who shapes the battlefield to his purposes, forcing an enemy to fight in a manner of his choosing, will win. […] 12. Sieges, because of their traditionally limited spatial dimensions, amplify the interaction between the opposing forces. If the siege lasts long enough, if the fighting is both frequent and bloody, self-generated parameters of behavior will emerge that eschew traditional norms of military conduct. […] 13. All other principles and theories of siege warfare notwithstanding, starving an opponent into submission can be, as the ancient Greeks discovered, the most effective offensive weapon. Starvation consumes time, but it also conserves men and materiel. […] Thus starvation is an attractive military option, but it is prey to the irrational and unexpected dictates of battle.”

(Watson: Sieges: 173-176.)

“I myself am WAR.” (Georges Bataille, “The Practice of Joy before Death” quoted in Allan Stoekl, Politics, Writing, Mutilation: The Cases of Bataille, Blanchot, Roussel, Leiris, and Ponge. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1985: xv.)

“General Corman: Well, you see, Willard, in this war, things get confused out there. Power, ideals, the old morality, and practical military necessity. But out there with these natives, it must be a temptation to be God. Because there's a conflict in every human heart, between the rational and irrational, between good and evil. And good does not always triumph. Sometimes, the dark side overcomes what Lincoln called the better angels of our nature.” (lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

“Something was changing in the mood of the Republic. Globalising fantasies were much in the air….The old suspicion of empire was fading fast. Overseas commitments, it appeared, could be made to work….Assumptions that would have been unthinkable even a few decades previously were becoming commonplace. Enthusiasts for empire argued that Rome had a civilizing mission; that because her values and institutions were self-evidently superior to the barbarians, she had a duty to propagate them; that only once the whole globe had been subjected


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to her could there be a universal peace. Morality had not merely caught up with the brute fact of imperial expansion, but wanted more.” (Tom Holland, Rubicon, quoted in Morris Berman, Dark Ages America: The Final Phase of Empire. New York and London: W.W. Norton & Company, 2006: 304-305.)

“With his huge hammer again Eros knocked me like a Blacksmith And doused me in a wintry ditch” (Anakreon quoted in Carson, Eros: 7.)

“Andrea Juno: Explain the pain aspect— Bob Flanagan: Context is everything. Even people who are into SM like a mild form of stimulation…it’s all levels of stimulation—that’s all pain is. Some people just like a little mild butt-warming with a hand, and maybe a little bit of whipping so they turn a bit red, but they don’t want any marks. Then there are extreme people who are really into being bullwhipped; some people are into heavy flogging with a cat-o-nine tails until they bleed. There are these extremes all the time. There are time when you just want it to be lighter, and there are times when (if you are in a relationship like I had with Sheree) it didn’t matter what I liked; it was what she liked at the time. That’s a different planet entirely.” (Andrea Juno and V. Vale (Editors), Bob Flanagan: Supermasochist. San Francisco: Re/search Publications, 1993: 35.)

“Are we like the God of the Old Testament that we can decide in Washington, D.C., what cities, what towns, what hamlets in Vietnam are to be destroyed? Is it because we think it may possibly protect the people of Thailand, the people of Malaysia, the people of Hawaii, or keep certain people out of Texas or California or Massachusetts or New York? Or do we have that authority to kill tens and tens of thousands of people because we say we have a commitment to the South Vietnamese people? But have they been consulted, in Hue, in Ben Tre, or in the other towns that have been destroyed? Do we have the authority to put hundreds of thousands of people—in fact, millions of people—into refugee camps for their protection, or should these decisions be left to them? Do we have to accept that?... I do not think we have to. I think we can do something about it.”


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(U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy, statement made on the floor of the Senate, March 7, 1968, quoted in John Nichols (ed.), Against the Beast: A Documentary History of American Opposition to Empire. New York: Avalon Publishing Group, 2004: 248.)

“The idea of the American homeland has a similar meaning as the cordoned off center of the far flung American empire, which many now see as the most extensive hegemon since Rome, not just a superpower, but what the French call a “hyperpower.” Contracting the borders around the territorial homeland is related to waging a highly mobile and deterritorialized war against terrorism, conducted by a nation that has announced its unilateral right to launch overt and covert attacks across any sovereign borders regardless of international law or whose homelands is involved.” (Ann Beeson, “On the home front: A Lawyer’s struggle to Defend Rights after 9/11”, quoted in Kenneth Christie, America’s War on Terrorism: The Revival of the Nation-State versus Universal Human Rights. Pittsburgh, PA: Edwin Mellen Press, 2008: 200.)

“No paradigm is more ill-suited for the actual state of this America than the Roman paradigm.” (Bernard -Henri Lévy, American Vertigo: Travelling America in the Footsteps of Tocqueville. New York, NY: Random House, 2007: 298.)

“[Brian is writing graffiti on the palace wall. The Centurion catches him in the act] Centurion: What's this, then? "Romanes eunt domus"? People called Romanes, they go, the house? Brian: It says, "Romans go home. " Centurion: No it doesn't ! What's the latin for "Roman"? Come on, come on ! Brian: Er, "Romanus" ! Centurion: Vocative plural of "Romanus" is? Brian: Er, er, "Romani" ! Centurion: [Writes "Romani" over Brian's graffiti] "Eunt"? What is "eunt"? Conjugate the verb, "to go" ! Brian: Er, "Ire". Er, "eo", "is", "it", "imus", "itis", "eunt". Centurion: So, "eunt" is...? Brian: Third person plural present indicative, "they go". Centurion: But, "Romans, go home" is an order. So you must use...? [He twists Brian's ear] Brian: Aaagh ! The imperative !


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Centurion: Which is...? Brian: Aaaagh ! Er, er, "i" ! Centurion: How many Romans? Brian: Aaaaagh ! Plural, plural, er, "ite" ! Centurion: [Writes "ite"] "Domus"? Nominative? "Go home" is motion towards, isn't it? Brian: Dative ! [the Centurion holds a sword to his throat] Brian: Aaagh ! Not the dative, not the dative ! Er, er, accusative, "Domum" ! Centurion: But "Domus" takes the locative, which is...? Brian: Er, "Domum" ! Centurion: [Writes "Domum"] Understand? Now, write it out a hundred times. Brian: Yes sir. Thank you, sir. Hail Caesar, sir. Centurion: Hail Caesar ! And if it's not done by sunrise, I'll cut your balls off.” (The Life of Brian, IMDB.)

“We’re [i.e., the United States] an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other realities, when you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” (Unamed aide to U.S. President George W. Bush reported in Ron Suskind, “Faith, Certainty, and the Presidency of George W. Bush,” in the New York Times Magazine, 17 October 2004, quoted in Raymond Geuss, Politics and the Imagination. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2010: viii-ix.)

“Doc relaxed. If he could only get the woman in the white leather to stop interrupting and be kind instead, all America would change. She would have to think about things and America would have to too. All his life doc had been told that America was the freest country on earth. America is the most powerful country on earth. We’re number one. And Americans believed it because, after all, what did they know? To the north there was nothing and to the south there were people who wanted their jobs. All they could look in the eye was each other. It was just like that woman in white leather.” (Sarah Schulman, Empathy, Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2006: 145.)

“Miriam Hansen describes Erfahrung, on the other hand, as not having:


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As much of an empiricist connotation as ‘experience’, which links to ‘expert’ and ‘experiment’ and tends to assume a basically unmediated, stable relationship between subject and object. The German root of fahren (to ride, to travel) […] conveys a sense of mobility, of journeying, wandering, cruising, implying both a temporal dimension, that is, habit, repetition, and return, and a degree of risk to the experiencing subject.” (Peter Buse, Ken Hirschkop, Scott McCracken, and Bertrand Taithe, Benjamin’s Arcades: An Unguided Tour. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1999: 51.)

“It soon became clear, however, that this was not some little misunderstanding on the border, but a colossal assault involving three million German troops and thousands of tanks and planes, advancing along an 1,800-mile front running from the Baltic to the Black Sea. ‘A cascade of explosions reverberated around us,’ Wehrmacht infantryman Wilhelm Lubbeck remembered. ‘Our artillery unleashed a short but devastating bombardment of the enemy’s positions, and the flashes of light from the explosions lit the entire eastern horizon. Then as dawn broke, a ceaseless droning echoed in the sky above us. Wave after wave of planes were appearing – Heinkels and Junkers, Stukas and Messerschmitts – all flying east.’ Then Lubbeck heard something different. A deep, powerful rumbling shook the ground around him. Hundreds of tank engines were revving up. The Panzers were on the move.” (Michael Jones, Leningrad: State of Siege. London: John Murray (Publishers), 2009: 12.)

“Jerusalem was defended by three walls except where it was shut in by impassable ravines; so that a single rampart was enough. It was built on two hills facing each other and separated by a central ravine, at which the terraces of houses ended. Of these hills the one occupied by the Upper City was much higher and straighter along its length; being so strong it was called the Stronghold by King David, father of Solomon who first built the Temple, though known to us as the Upper Market. The second, called the Citadel and covered with the Lower City, was domeshaped. Opposite this was a third hill, by nature lower than the Citadel and originally cut off from it by another wide ravine; later, however, when the Hasmonaeans were reigning they filled the ravine in, wishing to join the City to the Temple; they also removed the top of the Citadel to reduce its height so that the Temple could be seen beyond it.” (Josephus (Translated by G.A. Williamson), The Jewish War. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1977: 286-287.)

“It’s a beautiful moment when an assault against the world order is set in motion.


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From its almost imperceptible beginning you already know that, whatever happens, very soon nothing will ever again be the same as it was. The charge begins slowly, picks up speed, passes the point of no return, and irrevocably collides with what seemed unassailable: the bulwark which was so solid and well-defended, but which is also destined to be shaken and thrown into disorder. That is what we did, emerging from the night, raising once again the banner of the “good old cause” and marching forward under the cannon fire of time. Along the way many of us dies or were taken prisoner; many others were wounded and permanently put out of action; and certain elements even let themselves slip to the rear out of lack of courage; but I believe I can say that our formation as a whole never swerved from its line until it plunged into the very core of destruction.” (Guy Debord cited in Vincent Kaufmann (trans. by Robert Bononno), Guy Debord: Revolution in the Service of Poetry. Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, 2006: 199.)

“With his forces intact he will dispute the mastery of the Empire, and thus, without losing a man, his triumph will be complete. This is the method of attacking by stratagem.” (Sun Tzu, The Art of War: 14.)

“It’s not that what is past casts its light on what is present, or what is present its light on what is past; rather, image is that wherein what has been comes together in a flash with the now to form a constellation. In other words, image is dialectics at a standstill. For while the relation of the present to the past is a purely temporarl, continuous one, the relation of what-has-been to the now is dialectical: is not progression but image, suddenly emergent.—Only dialectical images are genuine images (that is, not archaic); and the place one encounters them is in language.” (Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 462.)

“’You are sad,’ the Knight said in an anxious tone, ‘let me sing you a song to comfort you.’ ‘Is it very long?’ Alice asked, for she had heard a good deal of poetry that day. ‘It’s long,’ said the Knight, ‘but it’s very, very beautiful. ‘Everybody that hears me sing it – either it brings the tears into their eyes, or else – ‘ Or else what?’ said Alice, for the Knight had made a sudden pause. ‘Or else it doesn’t, you know. The name of the song is “Haddock’ Eyes”.’ Oh, that’s the name of the song, is it?’ Alice said, trying to feel interested.


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‘No, you don’t understand,’ the Knight said, looking a little vexed. ‘That’s what the name is called. The name really is “The Aged-Aged Man”.’ ‘Then I ought to have said, “That’s what the song is called”?’ Alice corrected herself. ‘No, you oughtn’t: that’s another thing. The song is called “Ways and Means”: but that’s only what it’s called, you know!” ‘Well, what is the song, then?’ said Alice, who was by this time completely bewildered. ‘I was coming to that,’ the Knight said. ‘The song really is “A-sitting on a Gate”: and the tune’s my own invention.’ So saying, he stopped his horse and let the reins fall on its neck: then slowly beating time with one hand, and with a faint smile lighting up his gentle, foolish face, he began. Of all the strange things that Alice saw in her journey through the Looking-glass, this was the one that she always remembered most clearly.” (Lewis Carroll: The Complete Works. London: CRW Publishing Ltd., 2005: 87.)

“A. watched her with amazement. At her bidding and for the further satisfaction of her passion for feeding God’s creatures, he had acquired a number of domestic animals. Three plump dogs, two dachshunds and a spaniel, and a continually multiplying number of cats inhabited the house. […] Even the two sausage-shaped dachshunds, who hardly honored anyone else’s commands with so much as a blink, obeyed her slightest word, and the moment she entered a room the cats began to purr.” (Broch, The Guiltless: 238-239.)

“In 1977, when my wife and I were living in New Delhi (she was serving as the Resident Director of a Canadian educational institute that year; I was writing a novel), I asked the American agricultural attaché at a Canadian party where he’d been born. “Fargo, North Dakota—almost a Canadian,” he said, a little apologetically. “Well, so was I!” I admitted, “— almost an American. “What hospital?” he asked. “St. John’s,” I said. Would you by any chance remember the name of your doctor? he asked. “Dr. Hannah,” I said. The man took a deep breath, then called his wife over. “This is the woman who delivered you,” he said. She was Dr. Hannah’s delivery room nurse.” (Blaise, I Had A Father: 35.)

“If I were not a man, and if I were not the man that I am, I would like to be a dog. […] I would like to be a dog like him: short haired, pale moon-liked color, stained here and there with


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rosy spots, a thin veneer, and slender and muscled thighs. I would like my head to be thin, and long, the ears pointed, the eyes blue. In order to be able to run over land, to enter woods, rivers, fields and mountains, to possess nature through other senses than through which men possess her. To be able to invent the world, and to try, in this way, to correct the errors of creation not from the point of view of humanity, as men do, but from the point of view of the dog. I would like to be a dog just because of his animal side, which reveals in him an instinct that is very distant from man’s; a different dignity, freedom, and morality.” (Curzio Malparte (Translated by Robin Monotti Grazdiadei), Woman Like Me. Leicester, England: Troubadour Publishing, 2007: 23.)

“Don Quixote Explained Poetry To The Dogs ‘I write words to you whom I don’t and can’t know, to you who will always be other than and alien to me. These words sit on the edges of meanings and aren’t properly grammatical. For when there is no country, no community, the speaker’s unsure of which language to use, how to speak, if it’s possible to speak. Language is community. Dogs, I’m now inventing a community for you and me.” (Acker, Don Quixote: 191.)

“If Man becomes an animal again, then his arts, his loves and his play must also become purely “natural” again … Men would construct their edifices and works of art as birds build their nests and spiders spin their webs, would perform their musical concerts in the manner of frogs and cicadas, would play like young animals, and would indulge in love like adult beasts. But one cannot then say that all this “makes Man happy.” One would have to say that post-historical animals of the species Homo sapiens (which will live amidst abundance and complete security) will be satisfied [content] with their artistic, erotic and playful behavior, inasmuch as, by definition, they will be contented with it.” (Alexandre Kojève quoted in Roth, The Ironists Cage: 153.)

“Female culture is ultimately a universal culture, which makes it possible to confront difference within the self and other. In this respect we should bear in mind Benjamin’s words: “All rulers are the heirs of those who conquered before them. Hence, empathy with the victor invariably benefits the rulers. Historical materialists know what that means. Whoever has emerged victorious participates to this day in the triumphal procession in which the present rulers step over those who are lying prostrate.”


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(Dianne Chisholm, Queer Constellations: Subcultural Space in the Wake of the City. London and Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2005: 192.)

“The most dramatic manifestations of the congressional anti-subversive crusade ended with Senator McCarthy’s censure in 1954. Yet, United States political and cultural discourse in the second half of the 1950s still displayed a deep concern with the relationship between gender and the political, economic, and social order. Political intellectuals and pundits of other sorts commented anxiously on the “decline” of masculinity, pointing to worrisome changes in the relations between the sexes. Arthur Schlesinger Jr., lamented: “Women seem an expanding, aggressive force, seizing new domains like a conquering army, while men, more and more on the defensive, are hardly able to hold their own and gratefully accept assignments from their new rulers.” For Schlesinger, such changes explained the disturbing “sexual ambiguity” of the age. It was “no accident,” he argued, “that homosexuality … should be enjoying a cultural boom new in our history.” (Robert D. Dean, Imperial Brotherhood: Gender and the Making of Cold War Foreign Policy. Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 2003: 171.)

“The reinvention of lesbian sex, indeed of sex in general, is an ongoing project, and it coincides…with the formation of, or surfacing of, many other sexualities. The transgender community, for example, people in various stages of gender transition, have perhaps revealed the extent to which lesbians and gay men are merely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to identifying sexualities that defy heterosexual definition or the label straight. The breakdown of genders and sexualities into identities is in many ways, therefore, an endless project, and it is perhaps preferable therefore to acknowledge that gender is defined by its transitivity, that sexuality manifests as multiple sexualities, and that therefore we are all transsexuals. There are no transsexuals.” (Judith Halberstam, “F2M: The Making of Female Masculinity,” Laura Doan (ed.), The Lesbian Postmodern. New York: Columbia University Press, 1994: 226.)

“Let us begin then, not with male and female, not with gay or bi or trans or straight, but with breath and touch and skin and fur. Let us begin with what we already sense without knowing we do. As Pablo Neruda writes in his Extravagario, his book of vagaries, a child’s foot does not know its own nature; it does not know it is a foot. It “wants,” he says, “to be a butterfly or an apple.” Who is to say it also is not or will not be? Could bestiality be reinvented as a second innocence?


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What the enlightened mind can no longer fathom, the soul yearns to learn through the body.” (Karin Cope, quoted in (Edited by Ellen Sussman), Dirty Words: A Literary Encyclopdia of Sex. New York, NY: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2008: 30.)

“In a proper Story, one would by now have some sense of the Situation: some latent or overt conflict, or at least some tension, whether between […] themselves or between them on the one hand and something exterior to them on the other (a neighbor, a relative, a life problem, whatever); then some turn of events to raise the dramatical stakes. In short a story-in-progress, the action which is felt to be building strategically to some climax and satisfying denouement. The narrative thus far of this late-middle-aged , upper-middle class, early twenty-first century, contented exurban North American married couple, however, its teller readily acknowledges to be no proper Story…” (John Barth, The Development: Nine Stories. Boston and New York: Houghton & Mifflin Company, 2008: 147.)

“What are you getting from me? You are not getting any definitive statement. You’re getting another version. I would say that what I do stems from the fact that, as with most historians, the past has always been a problem for me. Growing up as a working-class person, who has no sense of tradition and for whom high culture was a kind of mystery, that I came to know through education, I found it fascinating to think there were whole classes and groups of people who oriented themselves in terms of the meory of the provided tradition. That seems to be a mystery for me. And history was the same to me: to be a place you can examine, that realationship of the individual to the past. It seemed to me evident, the more I studied, that what historians produce are imaginative images of the past that have a function rather like the recall of the past events in one’s own individual imagination. That is why I sometimes stressed the subtitle in my bookd, Historical Imagination. Because to imagine something is to construct an images of it. You do not just construct the past and then relate it in an image. The philosophers of history would deal with history from the epistemological standpoint. That is legitimate enough. It is much more interesting to me to think of psychology of historical being. What does it mean to think what you live in history? Frank Ankersmit examined this question. What does it mean to experience history? What is the historical experience? When you ask about it, it is a very strange idea, that you can experience history. You do not experience history. You experience floods, battles, wars. The Yugoslavians—you think that they are experiencing history? No! They are experiencing tyranny, death, and terrorism. So, what is this “history” that people experience? It has to be an imaginative creation. But real.” (Hayden White, “The Past is a Place of Fantasy,” quoted in Ewa Domańska, Encounters: Philosophy of History after Postmodernism. Charlottesville and London: The University of Virgina Press, 1998: 34-35.)


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“Whatever the relationships may be like, two different types of discourse are ever-present, and their simultaneity triggers a mutual revealing and concealing of their respective contextual references. From this interplay there emerges semantic instability that is exacerbated by the fact that the two sets of discourse are also contexts for each other, so that each in turn is constantly switching from background to foreground….Through this double-voiced discourse every utterance carries something else in its wake, so that the act of combination gives rise to a duplication of what is present by that which is absent—a process that often results in the balance being reversed and the present serving only to spotlight the absent. The double meaning engendered by the act of combination opens up a multifariousness of interconnections within the text.” (Wolfgang Iser cited in Joshua Levinson, “Dialogical Reading in the Rabbinic Exegetical Narrative,” Poetics Today, 25:3 (Fall 2004): 506.)

“At the heart of Titus’ eventual victory was thus the ruthlessness of his assault, which paid little heed either to the damage caused to the city or to the losses on his own side. By the fall of Jerusalem huge numbers of Roman soldiers were dead and many more wounded. Precisely how heavy the Roman casualties were, we cannot now tell: it was not in the interest of Titus, or Josephus, to advertise the figures, and governments are often reticent about the number of dead on their own side when they wish to emphasize a glorious victory. In a glittering parade held in the centre of his former camp at the conclusion of the siege, Titus handed out gold and silver insignia to those who had been distinguished for valour during the war, but so far as is known from Josephus’ account, he made no mention of those who had made the supreme sacrifice, despite the uplifting rhetoric about “the immortality reserved for those who fall in the frenzy of battle” which, according to Josephus, he had used when encouraging his troops to assault the walls at peril of their lives. The number of casualties was a direct result of haste. Titus was under pressure to capture Jerusalem quickly.” (Martin Goodman, Rome and Jerusalem: The Clash of Ancient Civilizations. New York: Vintage Books, 2007: 419420.)

“Miss Gulch: [stopping bicycle and getting off] Gale? Uncle Henry Gale: Well, howdy, Miss Gulch. Miss Gulch: [comes into the Gales' yard] I want to see you and your wife right away about Dorothy! Uncle Henry Gale: Dorothy? Well, what has Dorothy done? Miss Gulch: What she's done? I'm all but lame from the bite on my leg!


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Uncle Henry Gale: Oh! You mean she bit you? Miss Gulch: No, her dog! Uncle Henry Gale: Oh, so he bit her dog, eh? [Uncle Henry tries to shut the gate, but it hits her on the backside] Miss Gulch: [exasperated] No!” (The Wizard of Oz: MGM 1939, 1MDB.)

“I…I love you, Uncle Sam!” I confessed.” (Robert Coover, The Public Burning. New York: Grove Press, 1977: 534.)

“The dog was silly, and being a silly dog, he was overjoyed, and it was nothing but happiness making his tail stick up like that, and as my own peculiar spirit witnessed this, it was so filled with glee I can’t even express it…” (Robert Walser (Susan Bernofsky, Translator), Microscripts. New York, NY: New Directions, 2010: 59.)

“Only an angel without sex can in all innocence write such a naked sentence. This is why I told myself but I thought something else. Only a devil can write a sentence that, if it were not absolutely innocent, would be utterly indecent. If a woman writes, “I am naked on my deck chair,” such nudity promptly conjures up all the clichés of feminine nudity, the receiver must read an opening into it.” (Hélène Cixous (translated by Beverly Bie Brahic), Manhattan: Letters from Prehistory. New York: Fordham University Press, 2007: 97.)

“Uncle Sam. He is tasteless and rude and altogether not a nice person, but he has taught me many a subtle trick such as folding my trousers properly and I think I shall keep him despite the fantastic wages the rascal asks.” (Vladimir Nabokov, The Original of Laura: A Novel in Fragments. London and New York: Penguin Classics: 2009: 261.)

“Every philosophy is a foreground philosophy – that is a hermit’s judgment: ‘there is something arbitrary in the fact that he stopped, looked back, looked around here, that he stopped digging and laid his spade aside here – there is also something suspicious about it.’ Every


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philosophy also conceals a philosophy; every opinion is also a hiding-place, every word also a mask.” (Friedrich Nietzsche (R. J. Hollingdale), Beyond Good and Evil: Prelude to a Philosophy of the Future. London: Penguin Books, 1990: 216.)

“Andrea Juno: What was her reaction? Bob Flanagan: I think she was turned on by a lot of it. She was turned off by some of the sexism, like: “That guy is a real pig: don’t pay any attention to him,” but, “Over there, that couple’s really into it: let’s see what they do!” So she came away with more positive feelings toward it.” (Juno and Vale (eds.), Bob Flanagan: 37.)

“Now I blessed the condition of the dog and toad, yea, gladly would I have been in the condition of the dog or horse, for I knew they had no soul to perish under the everlasting weight of Hell or Sin, as mine was like to do. Nay, and though I saw this, felt this, and was broken to pieces with it, yet that which added to my sorrow was, that I could not find with all my soul that I did desire deliverance.” (John Bunyan, Grace Abounding for the Chief of Sinners, cited in Lowry, Under the Volcano: 8.)

“The word Houyhnhnm, in their tongue, signifies a horse, and, in its etymology, the Perfection of Nature. I told my master, that I was at a loss for expression, but would improve as fast as I could; and hoped, in a short time, I should be able to tell him wonders. He was pleased to direct his own mare, his colt, and foal, and the servants of the family, to take all opportunities of instructing me; and every day, for two or three hours, he was at the same pains himself. Several horses and mares of quality in the neighbourhood came often to our house, upon the report spread of a wonderful Yahoo, that could speak like a Houyhnhnm, and seemed, in his words and actions, to discover some glimmerings of reason. These delighted to converse with me; they put many questions, and received such answers as I was able to return. By all these advantages I made so great a progress, that, in five months from my arrival I understood whatever was spoken, and could express myself tolerably well.” (Johanthan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 1996: 246-247.)


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“For the [K]abbalists, too, every existing thing is endlessly correlated with the whole of creation; for him too, everything mirrors everything else. But beyond that he discovers something else which is not covered by the allegorical network: a reflection of the true transcendence. The symbol “signifies” nothing and communicates nothing, but makes something transparent which is beyond all expression. Where deeper insight into the structure of the allegory uncovers fresh layers of meaning, the symbol is intuitively understood all at once— or not at all. The symbol which the life of the Creator and that of creation become one, is—to use [Friedrich] Creuzer’s words—“a beam of light which, from the dark and abysmal depths of existence and cognition, falls into our eye and penetrates our whole being.” It is a “momentary totality” which is perceived intuitively in a mystical now—[Nu] the dimension of time proper to the symbol. Of such symbols the world of Kabbalism is full, nay the whole world is to the Kabbalist such a corpus symbolicum.” (Friedrich Creuzer, Mythologie, (1918), quoted in Buck-Morss, The Dialectics of Seeing: 236.)

“His brooding wings the Spirit of God outspread, And vital virtue infus’d, and vital warmth Throughout the fluid Mass, but downward purg’d The black tartareous cold Infernal dregs Adverse to life; then founded, then conglob’d Like things to like, the rest to several place Disparted, and between spun out the Air, And Earth self-balanc’t on her Centre hung.” (John Milton, Paradise Lost, cited in Martin, The Ruins of Allegory: 238-239.)

“Threshold magic. At the entrance to the skating rink, to the pub, to the tennis court, to resort locations: penates. The hen that lays the golden praline eggs, the machine that stamps our name on the nameplates, slot machines, fortunetelling devices, and above all weighing devices (the Delphic gnothi seaton [know thyself] of our day) – these guard the threshold. Oddly, such machines don’t flourish in the city, but rather are a component of excursion sites, of beer gardens in the suburbs. And when, in search of a little greenery, one heads for these places on a Sunday afternoon, one is turning as well to the mysterious thresholds. Of course this same magic prevails more covertly in the interior of the bourgeois dwelling. Chairs beside an entrance, photographs flanking a doorway, are fallen household deities, and the violence they must appease grips our hearts even today at each ringing of the doorbell.”


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(Walter Benjamin quoted in Buse, Hirschkop, McCracken and Taithe (eds.), Benjamin’s Arcades: 54-55.)

“The affirmative moment of all art, and that of music in particular, is inherited from the ancient magic; the very tone with which all music begins has a touch of it. It is utopia as well as the lie that utopia is here now.” (Theodor W. Adorno, quoted in Detlev Claussen (Translated by Rodney Livingstone), Theodor W. Adorno: One Last Genius. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of the Havard University Press, 2008: 218.)

“Finally, the order came: “Panzer-march!” Our attack was under way! Thrusting tanks, diving Stukas, burning Ratas, columns of smoke from the rocket launchers towering in the sky. Self-propelled heavy guns, knocked-out Soviet tanks, the distraught faces of the captured, and time and again the black mushrooms of smoke from countless explosions-that was the battle north of Bjelgorod. For six hours the battle continued. On the sloping steppe, the Panzers, like knights in combat with horse and lance, would not let go. Ten times, twenty times, lightning, thunder, and smoke enveloped the giants. Then they rolled ahead ten meters, swung left or right, and roared anew. The commander stared at the enemy through the slits; the radio operators sent and received messages and orders; the loaders wiped their oil-stained hands during a quiet second, pushed the hair out of their face, and fed one shell after the other into the massive breech.” (Martin Steiger, Panzer Commander, quoted in Willie Fey (Translated by Henry Henschler), Armor Battles of the Waffen-SS: 1943-45. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 1990: 28.)

“Although all the combatant armies relied heavily on horses at the beginning of World War I, the benefits of using armored vehicles to provide mobility, firepower and protection were evident from the first days of the conflict. The British Admiralty was soon pressing commercial motor cars such as the Lanchester and Rolls-Royce into service as armored cars. Their well-made suspension needed little reinforcing, and with a machine gun mounted on top and some additional armor these vehicles proved versatile and useful for reconnaissance. But even armored cars could not operate effectively against entrenched and well-defended positions, and the stalemate of the Western Front gave impetus to the development of armored fighting vehicles. It was realized that a new form of mobile strike was needed. The ‘tank’, as it was codenamed for reasons of security, was to break the deadlock. Well armored and bristling with weapons, the idea was to cross trenches using the long tracks of the early vehicles and destroy enemy resistance with impunity.


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The idea was sound enough, and when they first appeared at the Battle of the Somme in 1916 they proved effective in frightening German conscripts, of not in fulfilling their intended role…If Germany lagged behind the Allies in armored warfare at the end of World War I, during the interwar period they developed a tank arm which was to have a huge impact on warfare. It was not the quality of the armored vehicles but the way in which they were used that proved the value of the armored fighting vehicle. Whereas the French and the British to some extent believed in the value of massed armored formations, the German Army believed in the value of massed armored formations. The early panzers proved too much for the Allies. However, the German panzer divisions suffered heavy casualties in the early campaigns, and all sides realized that the future of armored warfare lay in bigger, better-armed and better-armored vehicles.” (Philip Trewhitt and Chris McNab, Fighting Vehicles of the World. London: Amber Books, 2004: 7-8.)

“Machines are “metal” words where “crystallization slipping” is “that tongue spoke” dissolved into “not it” located in constraints. “Causing ‘them’ to freeze and perish” has no bearing on “stumbling block” of facts “embodied in old meanings “understood” to be “suffering ‘circumstantial’ distortions.” “It” makes itself “by definition” into “word,” missing the point “writing,” wanting as “further” point “a persona” clearly named.” (Barry Watten, “Statistics,” quoted in Alex E. Blazer, I Am Otherwise: Poetry and Theory After the Death of the Subject. Champaign and London: Dalkey Archive Press, 2010: 202.)

“He rose from the bed and stood lankily naked, watching his breath freeze in the greyish room. He went to the window. Yawning, he scratches a little circle in the window-frost. Through his peephole he saw what he had known he would see: dull grey battleships frozen in ice.” (William T. Vollmann, Europe Central. London and New York: Penguin Books, 2005: 750.)

“The tank was completely flat on the bottom and the top, with absolutely nothing but one little bump on the left front corner to break the flat expanse of highly polished metal. The four sides sloped at forty-five degree angles, and they were as bright and featureless as the rest of the vehicle. My uncle had told once told me that these tanks had interchangeable weaponry. They could attach any combination of guns and whatnot that the mission required, so the lack of visible weapons didn’t surprise me. What I couldn’t figure out was where the driver sat, and how he could see out of the thing.”


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(Fraknkowski, A Boy and His Tank: 2.)

“[…] sitzend im Panzer der Sprache, fahren bis an die vordersten Linien des Draussen, dorthin wo das Gemetzel beginnt. Der Panzer beschütz mich, er ist rundum vernietet, aus stählernen Platten gebaut, stabile Grammatik....Die Landschaft in der wir uns forbewegen, hat ihre Namen verloren...nicht zu vergessen das Gewirr von Geräuschen, es könnten andere Sprachen sein, ich verstehe sie nicht, nacht nichts, dass ist es was um uns geschieht. Doch was immer mir in den Weg kommt, ich bleibe im Panzer der Sprache, hier bin ich geschützt, einzigartig bewehrt.“ “[…] sitting in the armored tank of language, to drive to the front lines of what lies Outside, there where the slaughter begins. The tank protects me, riveted all around, built of steel plates, stable grammar….The landscape we advance in has lost its names…not to mention the swirl of sounds; it could be other languages; I don’t understand them; no big deal, that’ what’s happening around us. Still, whatever gets in my way, I stay inside my tank of language; here I’m protected, marvelously armored.” (Durs Grübein, “Aus einem alten Fahrtenbuch,” cited in Jonathan Monroe, “Avant-Garde Poetries after the Wall,” Poetics Today, 21:1, Spring 2000: 98.)

“The central question that arises for Benjamin thus becomes how – or better , why – Baudelaire is able to reactivate the allegorical voice if his world, quite unlike that of the baroque, is, far from being “ruined” by decades of grisly war, teeming with the material abundance of the first triumphant decades of industrial capitalism.” (Max Pensky, Melancholy Dialectics: Walter Benjamin and the Play of Mourning. Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 1993: 165.)

“But if the female imaginary were to deploy itself, if it could bring itself into play otherwise than as scraps, uncollected debris, would it represent itself, even so, in the form of one universe? Would it even be volume instead of surface? No….(Re)-discovering herself, for a woman, thus could only signify the possibility of sacrificing on one of her pleasures to another, of identifying herself with none of them in particular, of never being simply one. A sort of expanding universe to which no one limits could be fixed and which would not be incoherence nonetheless…” (Luce Iragaray, This Sex Which is Not One, in C.W. Maggie Kim, Susan M. St. Ville, and Susan M. Simonaitis, Transfigurations: Theology and the French Feminists. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 1993: 165.)


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“In this sense, there is something carnivalesque about the thought of Marx, as there is about the ideas of Nietzsche and Freud. The low is always a shadowy presence lurking within the high. As the critic William Empsom remarks, “The most refined desires are inherent in the plainest, and would be false if they weren’t.” At the root of the most lofty conception lie violence, lack, desire, appetite, scarcity and aggression. It is this underside of what we call civilization. Theodor Adorno speaks in graphic phrase of “the horror teeming under the stone of culture.” “The class struggle,” writes Walter Benjamin, “…is a fight for the crude and material things without which no refined and spiritual things could exist.” We should note that Benjamin is not out to deny the value of “refined and spiritual things,” any more than Marx is. He is concerned to put them in historical context. Like many a carnivalesque philosopher, Marx is a giant of a thinker with a heartfelt distrust of exalted ideas. Conventional politicians, by contrast, tend to speak publicly in earnestly idealist terms and talk privately in cynically materialist ones.” (Terry Eagleton, Why Marx Was Right. New Haven & London: Yale University Press, 2011: 146-147.)

“If the troops are on the march, a detachment of more or less strength forms in its van or advance guard, and in case of the movement of the Army being reversed, this same detachment will form the rearguard. If the troops are in cantonments or camp, an extended line of weak posts, forms the vanguard, the outposts. It is essentially in the nature of things, that, when the Army is halted, a greater extent of space can and must be watched than when the Army is in motion, and therefore in the one case the conception of a chain of posts, in the other that of a concentrated body arises of itself.” (General Carl Von Clausewitz (trans. by Colonel J.J. Graham), On War. New York: Barnes and Noble, 2004 (originally published in 1832): 297.

“In wartime the state seeks to destroy its own culture. It is only when this destruction has been completed that the state can begin to exterminate the culture of its opponents. In times of conflict authentic culture is subversive. As the cause championed by the state comes to define national identity, as the myth of war entices a nation to glory and sacrifice, those who question the value of the cause and the veracity of the myths are branded as internal enemies.” (Chris Hedges, War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning. New York: Random Books, 2004: 62.)


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“Alone in the bunker, fear cramped by neck muscles and tremors shook my head like seizures. Tears filled my eyes and I started to repeat the same question aloud, ‘What am I gonna do? What am I gonna do?’ Just then Wolverton staggered through the doorway. He was clearly in shock. Blood flowed from his right hand, which he was holding carefully with his left. A piece of shrapnel had nearly ripped off his middle finger, which now clung to his hand by a half-inch wide flap of skin. A fractured bone protruded through the translucent fat. I quickly wrapped his hand with a large bandage from a first aid kit and laid him down on the cot across from the radio desk. He stared up at the ceiling, panting and frightened. Though he had made his way back to the comm. Bunker to relieve me of radio duty, he was clearly in no condition to do so.” (Michael Archer, A Patch of Ground: Khe Sanh Remembered. Central Point OR: Hellgate Press, 2005: 84-85.)

“Death, instead of defining the contours of the Self and establishing a bridge, by dialectical mediation, between the self-destroying individual (the tragic hero), and the self-determining community that his death prepares – now leads nowhere, and least of all toward any sort of (transcendent) beyond. Death remains, as it were, trapped in the world of immanence: the dead do not depart, or if they do, it is only to return as revenants, as ghosts. Instead of defining identity, death returns as the shadow that splits life into a life that consists largely in passingaway, and a death that, like Kafka’s Hunter Gracchus, has nowhere to go but back to the living. Living and dying tend to overlap.” (Weber, Benjamin’s-abilities. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008: 158.)

“Passing to your present passion for liberty, I say that it comes too late. The time is past when you ought to have striven never to lose it…There was, to be sure, a time when you should have strained every nerve to keep out the Romans; that was when Pompey invaded this country. But our forefathers and their kings, though in wealth and in vigour of body and soul far your superiors, yet failed to withstand a small fraction of the Roman army; and will you, to whom thraldom is hereditary, you who in resources fall so short of those who first tendered their submission, will you, I say, defy the whole Roman empire? Look at the Athenians…Look at the Spartans….Look at the Macedonians…Myriads of other nations, swelling with greater pride in the assertion of their liberty, have yielded. And will you alone disdain to serve those to whom everything is subject? What is the army, what are the weapons, on which you rely? Where is your fleet to sweep the Roman seas? Where is your treasury to meet the cost of your campaigns? Do you really suppose that you are going to war with Egyptians or Arabs? Will you shut your eyes to the might of the Roman empire? Will you not measure your own weakness? Have not our forces been often defeated even by the neighbouring nations, while theirs have never met


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with a reverse throughout the whole inhabited world? Even that world has not sufficed for their ambition. For, not content with having for their frontiers on the east the Euphrates, on the north the Ister [the Danube], on the south Libya explored into the uninhabited regions, on the west Gades, they have sought a new world beyond the ocean and carried their arms as far as the Britons, previously unknown in history. I ask you, then, are you wealthier than the Gauls, stronger than the Germans, more intelligent than the Greeks, more numerous than all the peoples of the world? What is it which inspires you with confidence to defy the Romans?” (Speech by King Agrippa II just before the outbreak of revolt in Jerusalem in spring 66 CE, recorded by Josephus, quoted in Goodman, Rome and Jerusalem: 63-64.)

“The first dead soldiers I saw…lay where they had fallen…their limbs in grotesque positions, their eyes and mouths open…It was devastating to realize that this was what we had to look forward to every day.” (Stephen G. Fritz, Frontsoldaten: The German Soldier in World War II. Lexington, KY: The University Press of Kentucky, 1997: 34.)

“Christmas 2001 There’s no rush when you’re dead. You may have scrambled up the dark stairs to confront it, nose to the mushy carpet, anticipating its horror for every one of those fifteen steps, expecting it every inch of the half-landing. But there’s no rushing once you’ve seen him, her and it. No rushing once you’re there. Only pottering around. Pottering around for eternity.” (Will Self, How The Dead Live. New York, NY: Grove Press, 2001: 26.)

“The words ‘modernization’ and ‘modernity’ have been degraded to fashionable concepts under which you can think anything at all. If you try to figure out what the people called ‘modernizers’ today understand under the term ‘modernity’, you find that it is little else than economic and social adaptations to the supposed constraints of the global market. The concept of modernity is reduced to purely economic and technical categories. Thus, the Anglo-Saxons have no legal protection against layoffs, so if we want to be modern we have to get rid of our protections in that area as well. In many countries the social safety net is being seriously reduced, so if we want to be modern we have to reduce it drastically as well. In many countries, business taxes have been reduced so that the entrepreneurs don’t leave the country and go elsewhere, so we have to be modern and reduce our taxes as well. Modernity has simply become a word for the conformity to such economic constraints. The question of how we want to live


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together and what kind of society we want has become a completely un-modern question and is no longer posed at all.” (Oskar Lafontaine, Das Herz schlägt links, quoted in Frederic Jameson, A Singular Modernity: Essay on the Ontology of the Present. New York and London: Verso, 2002: 9.)

“Attempts to think the preservation of constituting power are certainly not lacking in our age, and they have become familiar to us through the Trotskyite notion of “permanent revolution” and the Maoist concept of “uninterrupted revolution.” Even the power of councils […] can, from this perspective, be considered as a survival of constituting power within constitutional power. But the two great destroyers of spontaneous councils in our time—the Leninist party and the Nazi party—also present themselves, in a certain sense, as the preservers of a constituting moment [istanza] alongside constituted power. […] the question “Where?” is the essential one once neither the constituting power nor the sovereign can be situated wholly inside or altogether outside the constituted order.” (Giorgio Agamben (Translated by Daniel Heller-Roazen), Homo Sacer: Sovereign Power and Bare Life. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1998: 42.)

“the wild cascades into the deepest gulfs gurglings and with sobs rming underground; ke the wild cascades! seek each other out, nt without response, e sight of stars,” (Randomly torn text fragment from Chalres Baudelaire (James McGowan, Translator), The Flowers of Evil. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993.)

“No one ever felt less at home in Paris than Baudelaire. Every intimacy with things is alien to the allegorical intention. To touch on things means, for it, to violate them. To recognize things means, for it, to see through them. Wherever the allegorical intention prevails, no habits of any kind can be formed. Hardly has a thing been taken up than allegory has dispense with the situation … But to become obsolete means: to grow strange. Spleen lays down centuries


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between the present moment and the one just lived. It is spleen that tirelessly generates ‘antiquity.’ And in fact, with Baudelaire, modernity is nothing other than the ‘newest antiquity.’ Modernity, for Baudelaire, is not solely and not primarily the object of his sensibility; it is the object of a conquest. Modernity has, for its armature, the allegorical mode of vision.” (Walter Benjamin, “‘Konvulut J’ The Arcades Project,” quoted in Harder, Walter Benjamin and The Arcades Project: 189.)

“But I have no map or model in my mind as I stand at the railing disconsolately, and the Batory, after having waited for Irena’s decision, begin’s moving again. The next morning, standing with my parents and my sister in a crowd at the ship’s prow, I discern the outlines of massive, gray shapes against the cloudy sky. Closer still, the shapes resolve into buildings, tall and monolithic to my eyes. Montreal. We look at the approaching city wordlessly. The brief Batory interlude is over, and so is the narrative of my childhood.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 95.)

“Although before me lies the most industrious and luminous plain, and beyond, the sea most charged with myth, my sole reality is the page on which I write, endowed with more reality than the world, objects, closed or exterior spaces, the light in which I make my figures move.” (Guyotat, Coma: 89.)

“Language has unmistakably made that memory is not an instrument for exploring the past, but rather a medium. It is the medium of that which is experienced, just as the earth is the medium in which ancient cities lie buried. He who seeks to approach his own buried past must conduct himself like a man digging. Above all, he must not be afraid to return again and again to the same matter; to scatter it as one scatters earth, to turn it over as one turns over soil. For the “matter itself” is no more than the strata which yield their long-sought secrets only to the most meticulous investigation. That is to say, they yield those images that, severed from all earlier associations, reside as treasures in the sober rooms of our later insights – like torsos in a collector’s gallery. It is undoubtedly useful to plan excavations methodically. Yet no less indispensable is the cautious probing of the spade in the dark loam. And the man, who merely makes an inventory of his findings, while failing to establish the exact location of where in today’s ground the ancient treasures have been stored up, cheats himself of this richest prize. In this sense, for authentic memories, it is far less important that the investigator report on them than that he mark, quite precisely, the site where he gained possession of them. Epic and


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rhapsodic in the strictest sense, genuine memory must therefore yield an image of the person who remembers, in the same way a good archaeological report not only informs us about the strata from which its findings originate, but also gives an account of the strata which first had to be broken through.” (Howard Eiland and Michael W. Jennings (eds.), Walter Benjamin, Selected Writings, Volume 2:1 and 2:2 19271934. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard, 1999: 576.)

“Leading this new colonial imperialism comes my own native land built by my father’s toil and blood, the United States. The United States is a great nation; rich by grace of God and prosperous by the hard work of its humblest citizens…Drunk with power we are leading the world to hell in a new colonialism with the same old human slavery which once ruined us; and to a third world which will ruin the world. (W.E.B. DuBois, from his speech expressing his anger over the role the United States was playing in supporting colonial powers and undermining uprisings in the dawning Cold War era, 1949. An America obsessed with controlling Communism, DuBois warned, would soon move from supporting colonialism and imperialism to practicing colonialism and imperialism,” cited in John Nichols (ed.), Against the Beast: A Documentary History of American Opposition to Empire. New York: Nation Books, 2004: 232.)

“The United States does not seek a territorial empire. We have never been imperialists. We seek a world in which liberty, prosperity and peace can become the heritage of all peoples, and not just the exclusive privilege of the few.” (Collin L. Powell, Remarks at The Elliott School of International Affairs, George Washington University,” http:www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2003/23836.htm.)

“The American Empire has long followed a double impetus to construct boundaries and patrol all movement across them and to break down those borders through the desire for unfettered expansion. To separate Empire from imperialism is to foreclose the history of American imperialism and breathe new life into the belief in American exceptionalism. A key paradox informs the ideology of American exceptionalism: it defines America’s radical difference from other nations as something that goes beyond the separateness and uniqueness of its own particular heritage and culture. Rather, its exceptional nature lies in its exemplary status as the apotheosis of the nation-form itself and as a model for the rest of the world. American exceptionalism is in part an argument for boundless expansion, where national particularism and international universalism converge. The cultural expressions I analyze reveal an anxiety about the anarchic potential of imperial distension underlying this exceptionalist model. If the fantasy


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of American imperialism aspires to a borderless world where it finds it own reflection everywhere, then the fruition of this dream shatters the coherence of national identity, as the boundaries that distinguish it from the outside world promise to collapse.” (Amy Kaplan, The Anarchy of Empire in the Making of U.S. Culture. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2002: 15-16.)

“In the early years of the twenty-first century the United States enjoys a preponderance of military power greater than that of any other nation in history. Rome was rivaled in land power by Carthage, Persia, and other states, and its sphere of control never extended far beyond Western Europe and the Mediterranean region. Britain was rivaled in naval power by the Netherlands, France, and later Germany, and it was never dominant on land. Today America is rivaled in land, sea, and air power by….no one. Although the dominance of U.S. forces can still be challenged when they come into close contact with the enemy on his home turf, they are undisputed masters of the “commons” (sea, air, space), which allow them to project power anywhere in the world at short notice. In the words of journalist Gregg Easterbrook, “The American military is now the strongest the world has ever known, both in absolute terms and relative to other nations; stronger than the Wermacht in 1940, stronger than the legions at the height of Roman power.” (Max Boot, War Made New. New York, NY: Gotham Books, 2006: 429.)

“We meet here during a crucial period in the history of our nation, and of the civilized world. Part of that history was written by others; the rest will be written by us….And by acting, we will signal to outlaw regimes that in this new century, the boundaries of civilized behavior will be respected.” (President George W. Bush, 26 February, 2003, quoted in Wendy Brown, Regulating Aversion: Tolerancee in the Age of Identity and Empire. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2006: 176.)

“King Arthur: You fight with the strength of many men, Sir Knight. [the Black Knight doesn't respond] King Arthur: I am Arthur, King of the Britons. [no response] King Arthur: I seek the bravest and the finest knights in the land who will join me in my court at Camelot. [no response]


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King Arthur: You have proved yourself worthy. Will you join me? [no response] King Arthur: You make me sad. So be it. Come, Patsy! [attempts to get around the Black Knight] Black Knight: None shall pass. King Arthur: What? Black Knight: None shall pass! King Arthur: I have no quarrel with you, good Sir Knight. But I must cross this bridge. Black Knight: Then you shall die. King Arthur: I command you, as King of the Britons, to stand aside! Black Knight: I move for no man. King Arthur: So be it! [they fight until Arthur cuts off Black Knight's left arm] King Arthur: Now, stand aside, worthy adversary! Black Knight: 'Tis but a scratch! King Arthur: A scratch? Your arm's off! Black Knight: No, it isn't! King Arthur: Well, what's that then? King Arthur: I've had worse. King Arthur: You liar! Black Knight: Come on, you pansy! [they fight again. Arthur cuts off the Knight's right arm] King Arthur: Victory is mine! [kneels to pray] King Arthur: We thank thee, Lord, that in thy mercy [cut off by the Knight kicking him] Black Knight: Come on, then. King Arthur: What? Black Knight: Have at you! King Arthur: You are indeed brave, Sir Knight, but the fight is mine! Black Knight: Oh, had enough, eh? King Arthur: Look, you stupid bastard. You've got no arms left!” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0071853/quotes)

“The American way of war includes in advance the enemy’s punishment, because vectors of armed hostility against the United States can only be presented as manifest criminals. In fact, this way of presenting things was also quite the norm in Cold War times, when Moscow was obstinately labeled “the world-base of all terrorism.” Declaring war against an enemy thus gets


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replaced with the issuing of an arrest warrant. The interpretative authority to declare the fighter of a foreign cause a terrorist enables whoever holds it systematically to shift the perception of terror from the level of methods to that of the opposing group, and in doing so to remove oneself from the picture. Warfare thus becomes in dissociable from an extra-judicial trial. The victor’s anticipated justice comes to pass in the form of weapons research against the enemies of tomorrow and of the day after.” (Peter Sloterdijk, Terror From The Air. Semiotext(e), 2009: 66.)

“Over the last few decades, we have gradually seen the military’s monopoly on war give way to the private market. From compnies like Blackwater doing armed convoy jobs in Iraq (and shooting a few civilians along the way) and CACI interrogators working at Abu Ghraib, to the outsourcing of the U.S. military supply chain to firms like Haliburton (for which it made over $20 billion in revenue, three times what the U.S. government paid for the entire 1991 Gulf War), private companies are operating in traditional military roles as never before. Indeed in Iraq, there were mor of these “corporate warriors” deployed than actual U.S. military troops. The shift towards unmanned systems appears to be taking this trend further and in new directions. For many, there appears to be nothing inherently military abou the ability to punch a keyboard and move a joystick around. When an office sits in a cubicle driving robotic drones around, there is a striking convergence between military tasks and civilian life. As one report notes, “ While these actions are principally motivated by a desire to save scarce defense dollars, there is also a tacit recognition that the growing sophistication of the technologies of war require the military to ever more frequently tap civilian expertise.” (P.W. Singer, Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21 st Century. London and New York: Penguin Books, 2010: 370-371.)

“And drones. We had fourteen kinds of sneaky drones, most of which were mobile, trailing a thin fibre-optic cable, for both command and sensing. They were capacitor powered, and going at their best speed, they were good for only about two hours before they had to come back to their tank for recharging. If they were just sitting and watching, they were good for months. Some drones were simply mobile sensor clusters, but most carried a potent chemical explosive as well. Enemy drones could crawl through the dirt right under you if you weren’t very careful.” (Fankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 63.)

“America: anything can happen. Anyone can become a hero or somebody or dead.”


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(Cixous, Manhattan: 102.)

“The nemesis of empire was not just nationalism, but narcissism: the incorrigible selfsatisfaction of imperial elites, their belief that all the variety of the world’s people aspired to nothing else but to be a version of themselves.” “I am Iraq.” (Both quotes by Michael Ignatieff, Empire Lite, and the New York Times Magazine, cited in David McNally, “Imperial Narcissism: Michael Ignatieff’s Apologies for Empire,” in Colin Moores (editor), the new imperialists: Ideologies of Empire. Oxford: Oneworld Publications, 2006: 88.)

“’Are we going to look forward,” asked candidate Obama at an “American Jobs Tour” rally in Columbus Ohio, on October 20, 2008, “or are we going to look backwards?’ Audience: Forward! Obama: Are we going to look forward with hope, or are we going to look backwards with fear? Audience: Hope! Forward! Obama: Ohio, if you are willing to organize with me, if you are willing to go vote right now—we’ve got—you could go to the early voting right across the street, right on—right there. [Cheers and applause.] If every one of you are willing to grab your friends and your neighbors and make the phone calls and do what’s required, I guarantee you we will not just win Ohio, we will win this general election. And you and I together, we will change this country and we will change the world. [Cheers and applause.] God bless you. God bless the United States of America. [Cheers and applause.]” (Chris Hedges, Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of the Spectacle. Toronto: Alfred A. Knopf, 2009: 46-47.)

“Today, we know it, the future is not what it was.” (Mark Anspach, “Un philosophe entre Tantale et Jonas,” quoted in Slavoj Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: Hegel and the Shadow of Dialectical Materialism. London and New York: Verso, 2012: 983.)


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“The idea of progress. This gloomy beacon, invention of present day philosophizing, licensed without guarantee of nature or of God—this modern lantern throws a stream of darkness on all the objects of knowledge: liberty melts away, discipline vanishes.’” (Charles Baudelaire, (Translated by Jonathan Mayne), Art in Paris, quoted in Buck-Morss, Dialectics of Seeing: 435.)

“That the violence of the facts has become such a horror, that any theory, even the true kind, looks like ridicule of that horror—this is burned as a sign into the very organ of theory, language.” (Gerhard Richter (Editor), Language Without Soil: Adorno and Late Philosophical Modernity. New York, NY: Fordham University Press, 2010: 6.)

“Restaurants of the well-to-do, however, never ran seriously short […]. Moreover, those with money continued to buy attractive food, minus decent bread, to eat at home. But who ate rats? […] What function was served by the legend of the “need” to eat rats and the “necessity” of shooting the beloved zoo elephants, Castor and Pollux, on 30 December for food? Taken on its face, the (false) claim that numerous Parisians were forced to eat rats functioned to demonstrate that these citizens were brave, because they could not be made to surrender by any shortage of “ordinary” foods. But Kyri Claflin has argued that the legend of the rat did not survive, simply because it symbolized serious humiliation and patriotism at the level of the palate. The myth of the “eaten rat” was instead the “perfect symbol of the French belief in the superiority of [their] culture.” People who were able to prepare rat for the table were well-off enough to purchase other food. The poor preferred cat or dog meat. Cooking a rat, usually prepared as a paté or a salmis, required access to the technologies of the highest levels of haute cuisine. The rich ate rat not because they had to, but “because of what they were, and [that] was revealed in the FrancoPrussian war…Eating rat was a clever, self-mocking send up of the French at table that showed the world that they had not forgotten who they were.” (Hollis Clayson, Paris in Despair: Art and Everyday Life Under Siege (1870-71). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2002: 174-175.)

“…morality consists of a set of rules that individuals voluntarily agree to abide by, as we do when we sign a contract…. Those who understand and accept the terms of the contract are


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covered directly; they have rights created and recognized by, and protected in, the contract. And these contractors can also have protection spelled out for others who, though they lack the ability to understand morality and so cannot sign the contract themselves, are loved or cherished by those who can…. As for animals, since they cannot understand the constracts, they obviously cannot sign; and since they cannot sign, they have no rights. [B]ut those animals that enough people care about (companion animals, whales, baby seals, the American bald eagle), though they lack rights themselves, will be protected because of the sentimental interests of people. I have, then, according to contractarianism, no duty not to cause them pain or suffering; my duty not to hurt them is a duty I have to those people who care about what happens to them.” (Tom Regan, “The Case for Animal Rights,” quoted in Wolfe, Animal Rites: 48-49.)

“The wave I thought I was controlling sweeps me away and the triumphant course I had thought to achieve is transformed into a common shipwreck whose very site no one will ever know.” (Gustave Flaubert quoted in Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 338.)

“Although the social is always structured around a constitutive impossibility that necessarily thwarts any attempt to suture it as a totality, all social formations develop articulatory practices, or nodal points, that partially fix the excess meaning of the social in an organized and relatively closed system of differences. For this reason, at the same time that the individual occupies a multiplicity of contradictory subject positions, s/he also feels constrained to construct from those positions a relatively, or hegemonized, identity. Indeed, the very instability of the individual’s subjectivity, its construction across variable axes of difference, is one of the necessary conditions for the hegemonic articulation of a partially fixed identity.” (Robert J. Corber, In the Name of National Security: Hitchcock, Homophobia, and the Political Construction of Gender in Postwar America. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 1993: 5.)

“A construction of history that looks backward, rather than forward, at the destruction of material nature as it has actually taken place, provides dialectical contrast to the futurist myth of historical progress (which can only be sustained by forgetting what happened).” (Susan Buck-Morss, The Dialectics of Seeing: Walter Benjamin and the Arcades Project. London and Boston: MIT Press, 1989: 95.)


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“It was this cluttered abyss from which Baudelaire conjured up his images of beauty and evil, of the moment of hushed transcendence swelling in rot and decay, or the lush, literal contours of sin and grace, of eroticism and monstrosity contained in the glance, or the sound of a footfall, or the motion of fog in the abandoned city. Baudelaire’s allegory is, like that of the baroque, most striking when it ruthlessly combines the most insistently graphic images of the tormented, isolated, or dismembered body with the description of evil. It is a connection whose result, the allegorical image, renders the appearance of the new urban landscape into its Ur-old form. The myth of the modern as infinite progress slides into its true appearance, the repetition of the horrors of existence, in all their “beauty.” (Pensky, Melancholy Dialectics: 165.)

“Suddenly from outside, a bell spoke out, then ceased abruptly: dolente … dolore! Over the town, in the dark tempestuous night, backwards revolved the luminous wheel.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 47.)

“Imagine some foul and putrid corpse that has lain rotting and decomposing in the grave, a jellylike mass of liquid corruption. Imagine such a corpse a prey to flames, devoured by the fire of the burning brimstone and giving off dense choking fumes of nauseous loathsome decomposition. And then imagine this sickening stench, multiplied a millionfold and a millionfold again from the millions upon millions of fetid carcasses massed together in the reeking darkness, a huge and rotting human fungus.” (James Joyce, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, cited in Booker, Joyce, Bakhtin, and the Literary Tradition: 75.)

“Caught and killed a cat.” The next day he added: “Ate fried cat – very tasty.” (Diary of ten-year-old Valeri Sukhov quoted in Jones, Leningrad: 162.)

“The project that upholds metaphysical rhetoric and that involves dominating the entire mass of the philosophical corpus, or even of language, in order to be assured, over and against them, of an impregnable vantage point, is thus doomed in advance: “Classical rhetoric, then, cannot dominate, being enmeshed within it, the mass out of which the philosophical text takes shape.


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Metaphor is less in the philosophical text (and in the rhetorical text coordinated with it) than the philosophical text is within metaphor.” It is therefore impossible to assign strict limits to the tropics, to discriminate between primitive inscriptions and worn-out truths, like an owner doing the rounds of the property of language: “the detour does not overtake the road, but constitutes it, breaks open the path.” (Derrida and Malabou, Counterpath: 215.)

“He sought them both, but wished his hap might find Eve separate, he wished, but not with hope Of what so seldom chanced, when to his wish, Beyond his hope, Eve separate he spies.” (John Milton, Paradise Lost quoted in Susannah B. Mintz, Threshold Poetics: Milton and Intersubjectivity. London and Neward: Newark: University of Delaware Press and London: Associated University Press, 2003: 151.)

“There has always been something preternatural about paths, and especially in forests – I know now for I have read more – for not only folklore but poetry abounds with symbolic stories about them: paths that divide and become two paths, paths that lead to a golden kingdom, paths that lead to death, or life, paths where one meets wolves, and who knows? even mountain lions, paths were one loses one’s way, paths that not merely divide but become the twenty-one paths that lead back to Eden.” (Lowry, Hear Us O Lord From Heaven Thy Dwelling Place: 272.)

“The infantile citizen of the United States has appeared in political writing about the nation at least since Tocqueville wrote, in Democracy in America, that while citizens should be encouraged to love the nation the way the do their families and their fathers, democracies can also produce a special form of tyranny that makes citizens like children, infantilized, passive, and overdependent on the “immense and tutelary power” of the state …. Central to the narrative mode of the pilgrimage to Washington, and so much other national fantasy, is a strong and enduring belief that the best of U.S. national subjectivity can be read in its childlike manifestations and in a polity that organizes its public sphere around a commitment to making a world that could sustain an idealized infantile-citizen.” (Lauren Berlant, “The Theory of Infantile Citizenship,” quoted in Marita, Sturken, Tourists of History: Memory, Kitsch, and Consumerism from Oklahoma City to Ground Zero. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2007: 46.)


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“Imperial politics represents the conquest of domestic politics and the latter’s conversion into a crucial element of inverted totatlitarianism. It makes no sense to ask how the democratic citizen could “participate” substantively in imperial politics; hence it is not surprising that the subject of empire is taboo in electoral debates. No major politician or party has so much as publicly remarked on the existence of an American empire.” (Sheldon S. Wolin, Democracy Incorporated, quoted in Hedges, Empire of Illusion: 147.)

“The vision of universal peace continues to exist here. The “true grandeur of nations,” Americans have always felt, lies in peace, not in war; in social improvement, not in military glory…. This secular vision of the Christian ideal of the millennium comes as close as any one thing to summing up the meaning of American history. A land where miracles have happened, and unhappy men have become happy, America is a country with a national faith that this can go on happening until democracy, in the words of Walt Whitman, has fashioned “a new earth and a new man.” (Quoted in Godfrey Hodgson, The Myth of American Exceptionalism. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2009: 97.)

“Wonderful! To think that men from the frontiers of the earth should come so far as this from a desire to search for the Law.” (Fa-hsien, Travels of Fa-hsien, quoted in Simon Coleman & Jon Elster, Pilgrimage: Past and Present in the World Religions. London: British Museum Press, 1995: 176.)

“Exactly. The year 3001. Shit everywhere. Mutants traipsing through the rubble in search of antibiotics. No new products ever being made again. I think there’s a flaw in our DNA making humans invariably need to recede into the Dark Ages. I think her idea over. ‘You know, Anna-Louise, I wouldn’t mind if consumer culture went poof! Overnight because then we’d all be in the same boat and life wouldn’t be so bad, mucking about with chickens and feudalism and the like. But you know what would be absolutely horrible. The worst?’” (Douglas Coupland, Shampoo Planet. New York, NY: Washington Square Press, 1993: 32.)


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“He provokes laughter because the spectators know his true nature and anticipate it while he totally lacks self-awareness and because his very undertaking to impose himself as subject is grotesque. If laughter stigmatizes the massive error of the subman who takes himself seriously, does he not figure as the prototype of the laughable man who is comic in spite of himself by taking himself tragically? The punishment of his noblest dream is that it is grated and that its object is revealed to be ignoble: theatrical success, a strict reversal, passage from the positive to the negative with no previous warning—these farcical traps are common in the worst of possible worlds. And this time God is away: no one is there to witness that the tragedian is right in spite of what people think; they laugh at him, that is his only truth, and no one finds greatness in this execrable actor who persists in his error. Furthermore, after the ignominy comes voluntary debasement; engaged by the director, the comic becomes a comic quite consciously in spite of himself, and to increase his reputation or simply to earn a living he is base enough to disavow himself completely and—an abject sacrifice—to reproduce on stage his grand attitudes in order to amuse the public at his own expense.” (Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 182.)

“seemed to

become less sonorous remembering the card-games at the wet-nurse, the reading in the fireside, that poor love, so o tender, and she had forgotten back? What chain of events was e again? He was standing behind ainst the partition; and, every so on her.” (torn text fragment from Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary.)

“When disgust with a powerless liberty thoroughly commits the poet to political action, he abandons poetry. But he immediately assumes responsibility for the order to come [à venir]: he asserts the direction of activity, the major attitude. When we see him we cannot help being aware that poetic existence, in which we once saw the possibility of a sovereign attitude, is really a minor attitude.”


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(Georges Bataille, Literature and Evil, quoted in Starr, Logics of Failed Revolt: 158-9.)

“The whole order of venir and a-venir belongs to an other messianic time and an other language, so that nothing coming (venue) could ever actually occur or come about, or have occurred or have come about, in ordinary time. The Messiah’s “coming” can never actually correspond to an actual-historical appearance in ordinary time.” (John Caputo, “The Prayers and Tears of Jacques Derrida: Religion Without Religion,” quoted in Sanford L. Drob, Kabbalah and Postmodernism: A Dialogue. New York, NY: Peter Lang Publishing, 2009: 228-289.)

“Benjamin linked the decline in experience to modernity. A range of historical processes, such as urbanization, the commodity, new forms of technologized war, and factory work required people to shield themselves from the material world around them, to stop being emotionally open to that world and the people in it. Even the simple experience of riding on a bus or railroad, which puts people “in a position of having to stare at one another for minutes or even hours on end without exchanging a word,” would be overwhelming if we felt compelled to have some emotional contact with all the people we see. In such circumstances, the primary function of consciousness, Benjamin argues, is to protect us from the shocks of daily life, to insulate us from disruptive emotional experiences. This prevents us from affective contact with the materiality of the world around us; we do not get outside ourselves, and so we have fewer and fewer memory-experiences stored in the objects and places of our everyday lives.” (Jonathan Flatley, Affective Mapping: Melancholia and the Politics of Modernism. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008: 69.)

“’Well, then,’ said the Examining Magistrate, turning over the leaves and addressing K. with an air of authority, ‘you are a house painter?’ ‘No,’ said K., ‘I’m the junior manager of a large Bank.’ This answer evoked such a hearty outburst of laughter from the Right party that K. had to laugh too. People doubled up with their hands on their knees and shook as if in spasms of coughing.” (Franz Kafka cited in Slavoj Žižek, Did Somebody Say Totalitarianism? Five Interventions in the (Mis)Use Of A Notion. London and New York: Verso, 2001: 103.)

“Turning off again. Heading for Pont-Neuf. Hallucinating light. Brown shot with pink. Neo-Situationist slogan: Rions de notre inconscient, Let’s laugh at our unconscious. Bleeding


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down buttress. White glow of Seine. Dissiumlating Paris’ contradictory layers. Wars. Revolutions. Sans-papiers. Murd’d Wom’n. (Shit going elsewhere). While Grand Palais’s magnificent glass dome. Built for the 1900 World Exhibition. At bend of river. Still radiating optimisim. Of capitalist expansion. Ebony. Silver. Carpets. Ivory. Teak. Brought back from colonies. For reinforcing bourgeois interior. B saying. Against history’s boomerang effect.” (Scott, My Paris: 73.)

“So what do I want? All too soon I will aspire to retire into a fortress so that my life can go safely by. I have been digging my grave from the instant I was born. Well, I definitely want to get out of there! […] The man who camped by his dog’s grave said:…” (William T. Vollmann, Riding Toward Everywhere. New York: Harper Collins, 2008: 180.)

“The Germans placed their faith in panzer wedges, using companies of Tiger tanks as spearheads to batter in the Soviet defence lines. The II SS Panzer Corps, which had retaken Kharkov and then Belgrorod in March, was refitting. Brought up to strength mainly by Luftwaffe ground personnel, the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler put the new arrivals through an intensive training programme. SS Untersturmführer Michael Wittmann, who was to become the greatest panzer ace of the war, took command of his first Tiger platoon at this point. But despite the unquestioned superiority of the Tiger, the Waffen-SS panzergrenadier divisions were acutely conscious of their inferiority in equipment. The SS Das Reich even had to equip one of its companies with captured T-34s.” (Beevor, The Second World War: 471.)

“The long weary pushbroom whose dark bristles were as kinky as pubic hairs dragged itself attached to a man’s arm and hand. It was very late. Two children sat drinking sodas and playing with straws and crying out: What’s your name? – When the man’s toil brought him near enough, they shouted their question at him in shrill excited voices.” (William T. Vollmann, “What’s Your Name?” The Atlas. London and New York: Penguin Books, 1997: 28.)


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“Yes, what’s your names?” shouted the second policeman, who had taken a drink from the bar, but not looking at the Consul and still rolling his hips. “Trotsky,” gibed someone from the far end of the counter … “ (Lowry, Under the Volcano, 358.)

“Who am I? I know who I am, but what’s my brand name? Me with a new face, a puffy mask. Laid over the old one in strips of plastic, a blond Hallowe’en ghoul on top of the S.S. uniform. I was skinny as a beanpole underneath except for the hands, which were similarly treated, and that very impressive face. I did this once in my line of business, which I’ll go into later, and scared the idealistic children who lived downstairs. Their delicate skins red with offended horror. Their clear young voices raised in song (at three in the morning). I’m not Jeanine, I’m not Janet. I’m not Joanna. I don’t do this often (say I, the ghoul) but it’s great elevator technique, holding your forefinger to the back of somebody’s neck while passing the fourth floor, knowing he’ll never find out that you’re not all there. (Sorry, But watch out.) You’ll meet me later.” (Joanna Russ, the FeMale mAN. Boston: Beacon Press, 1975, 1992: 19.)

“—Don’t you have a name? --Do you need to tell me apart? --No, but I’d like to call you something. --All right then, call me Something. --wouldn’t you like to call me something too? --Oh, no, we’d only get confused. ………………………………… --But I don’t know my name. --You will. In the meantime, if you insist, I’ll call you someone.” (Christine Brookes-Rose, Such, quoted in Karen R. Lawrence, Techniques for Living: Theory and fiction in the Work of Christine Brooke-Rose. Columbus, OH: Ohio State University Press, 2010: 44.)

“Showering I feeling in the middle. Neither One. Nor entirely bleeding into context either.”


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(Scott, My Paris: 25.)

“Dialectics is the self-consciousness of the objective context of delusion; it does not mean to have escaped from that context. Its objective goal is to break out of the context from within. The strength required from the break grows in dialectics from the context of immanence; what would apply to it once more is Hegel’s dictum that in dialectics an opponent’s strength is absorbed and turned against him, not just in the dialectical particular, but eventually in the whole. By means of logic, dialectics grasps the coercive character of logic, hoping that it may yield—for that coercion itself is the mythical delusion, the compulsory identity. But the absolute, as it hovers before metaphysics, would be the nonidentical that refuses to emerge until the compulsion of identity has dissolved. Without a thesis of identity, dialectics is not the whole; but neither will it be a cardinal sin to depart from it in a dialectical step.” (Adorno, Negative Dialectics: 406.)

“Generals were praised if they managed to maintain a spirit of the ‘joy of slaughter’ in their troops, even if it meant arming night patrollers with spiked clubs to intimidate and bash the Huns. In the words of Henry de Man: I had thought myself more or less immune from this intoxication until, as trench mortar officer, I was given command over what is probably the most murderous instrument in modern warfare…One day…I secured a direct hit on an enemy encampment, saw bodies or parts of bodies go up in the air, and heard the desperate yelling of the wounded or the runaways. I had to confess to myself that it was one of the happiest moments of my life. He admitted that he had yelled aloud ‘with delight’ and ‘could have wept with joy.’ ‘What’ (he asked) were ‘the satisfactions of scientific research, of a successful public activity, of authority, of love, compared with this ecstatic minute?’” (Joanna Bourke, An Intimate History of Killing. New York, NY: Basic Books, 1999: 31.)

“Airpower…can profoundly influence the human condition. Through selective engagement, airpower can support a recovering population; encourage one element while discouraging another; monitor; deter, transport, and connect and assist in establishing the safe conditions for a safe and secure future.”


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(Robyn Read, USAF Colonel (ret.), 2005 cited in Tanaka and Young, Bombing Civilians: A Twentieth Century History: 154.)

“The aim is the destruction of German cities; the killing of German workers; and the disruption of civilized life throughout Germany. It should be emphasized that the destruction of houses, public utilities, transport, and lives; the creation of a refugee problem on an unprecedented scale; and the breakdown of morale both at home and at the battle fronts by fear of extended and intensified bombing, are accepted and intended aims of our bombing policy. They are not byproducts of attempts to hit factories.” (PRO AIR 2/7852, Letter from Arthur Harris to the Under Secretary of State, Air Ministry, October 25, 1943, cited in Randall Hansen, Fire and Fury: The Allied Bombing of Germany, 1942-45. Toronto: Doubleday Canada, 2008: 155.)

“Gentlemen, You Are Mad! We in America are living among madmen…Without a public mandate of any kind, the madness which will corrupt the face of the earth and blot out the nations of men, possibly put an end to all life on the planet itself. There is a reason: we are madmen, too…Our failure to act is the measure of our madness….We know that the madmen are still making these machines, and we do not even ask them for what reason, still less do we bring their work to a halt….While the world writhes in a spasm of madness, let us in America be mad with a method, mad with a purpose. Let us say No to the atomic bomb rather than say No to life.” (Lewis Mumford, Saturday Review, (Winter 1946), cited in Robert Jay Lifton and Greg Mitchell, Hiroshima in America: Fifty Years of Denial. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Son’s, 1995: 78.)

“The first mutineers were men of the 19th Bengal Infantry, stationed at Berhampur, who refused to accept the issue of new cartridges on 26 February. They and the 34th Infantry at Barrackpur – where the first shot of the Mutiny was actually fired – were promptly disbanded. But at Meerut (Mirath) near Delhi the spark was not so easily snuffed out. When eighty-five men in the Bengal Light Cavalry were jailed for refusing the new cartridges, their comrades resolved to free them. Private Joseph Bowater described what happened next, on the fateful evening of Sunday 9 May: ‘There was a sudden rising…a rush to the horses, a swift saddling, a gallop to the gaol…a breaking open of the gates, and a setting free, not only of the mutineers who had been court-martialled, but also of more than a thousand cut-throats and


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scoundrels of every sort. Simultaneously, the native infantry fell upon and massacred their British officers and butchered the women and children in a way that you cannot describe. Gaolbirds, bazaar riff-raff, and Sepoys – all the disaffected natives in Meerut – blood-mad, set about their work with diabolical cruelty, and, to crown their task, they fired every building they came across.’” (Niall Ferguson, Empire: The Rise and Demise of the British World Order and the Lessons for Global Power. New York, NY: Basic Books, 2004: 122-123.)

“We do not need obscure fragments of Heraclitus to prove that being reveals itself as war to philosophical thought, that war does not only affect [philosophical thought] as the most patent fact, but as the very patency, or the truth, of the real.” (Emmanuel Levinas, Totality and Infinity, quoted in Hannssen, Critique of Violence: 136.)

“Achilles baneful wrath – resound, O goddess – that impos’d Infinite sorrows on the Greeks, and many brave souls loos’d From breasts heroic; sent them far, to that invisible cave. That no light comforts; and their limbs to dogs and vultures gave.” (Homer (translated by George Chapman), The Iliad, Ware, Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions, 2003: 1-4.)

“There are doubtless several reasons for the wild tempo of the inner process; the most obvious one is introspection, which will suffer no idea to sink tranquilly to rest but must pursue [emporjagen] each one into consciousness, only itself to become an idea, in turn to be pursued [weitergejagt] by renewed introspection …. ‘This pursuit [Jagen], originating in the midst of men, carries one in a direction away from them. The solitude that for the most part has been forced on me, in part voluntarily sought by me -- but what was this if not compulsion too? – is now losing all its ambiguity and approaches its denouement. Where is it leading? The strongest likelihood is, that it goes right through me and rends me asunder. Or I can – can I? – manage to keep my feet somewhat and be carried along in the wild pursuit [Jagd]. Where, then, shall I be brought? “Pursuit” [Jagd], indeed, is only a metaphor. I can also say, “assault on the last earthly frontier,” an assault, moreover, launched from below, from mankind, and since this too is a metaphor, I can replace it by the metaphor of an assault from above, aimed at me from above.’


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All such writing is an assault on the frontiers.” (Franz Kafka, diary entry dated January 16, 1922, cited in Stanley Corngold, Franz Kafka: The Necessity of Form. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1990: 99)

“The path we were following was bordered with peach-and cherry trees, quince and almond trees, some pygmy-sized and trimmed into the strangest shapes, the others growing freely in clusters and shooting out their long, flower laden branches in all directions. I saw a little apple tree with a bright red trunk, leaves and flowers, shaped like a bulging vase and noticed a marvelous tree which the Chinese call the “pear tree with the leaves of birch”. It had the shape of a perfectly straight pyramid, six yards high, with a wide base and tapering, cone-shaped tip and was so covered with flowers that you could see neither leaves nor branches. Countless petals were falling from it while others blossomed and they whirled around the cone and fell slowly on the paths and lawns like so many snowflakes. Further on, the air was impregnated with the subtle scents of the dogrose and the reseda and then we walked past clumps of bushes decorated with the small-flowered deutzias and large pinkcorymbs of those beautiful Pekinese ligutrinae with hairy leaves and large feathery panicles of white flowers covered with sulphurcolored dust.” (Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: 97-98.)

“Becoming-woman can play this intermediate role, this role as mediator vis-à-vis other sexed becomings, because it is not too far removed from the binarism of phallic power. In order to understand the homosexual, we tell ourselves that it is sort of “like a woman.” And a number of homosexuals themselves join in this somewhat normalizing game. The pair feminine/passive, masculine/active therefore remains a point of reference made obligatory by power in order to permit it to situate, localize, territorialize, control intensities of desire. Outside of this exclusive bi-pole, no salvation: or else it’s the plunge into the nonsensical, to the prison, to the asylum, to psychoanalysis, etc. Deviants, various forms of marginalization, are themselves coded to wrok as safety values. Women, in short, are the only official trusteés of a becoming-sexed. Body. A man who detaches himself from the phallic types inherent in all powerful nations will enter such a becoming-woman according to diverse possible modalities. It is only on this condition, moreover, that he will be able to become animal, cosmos, letter, color, music.” (Deleuze, “Becoming-Woman,” quoted in Chris Kraus and Sylvère Lotringer, Hatred of Capitalism: A Semiotext(e) Reader. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2002: 356.)


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“Her pose, startled and broken, was caught at the point where her hand had reached almost to the shoulder, and at the moment Nora’s body struck the wood, Robin began going down. Sliding down she went; down, her hair swinging, her arms held out, and the dog stood there, rearing back, his forelegs slanting; his paws trembling under the trembling of his rump, his hackle standing; his mouth open, his tongue slung sideways over his sharp bright teeth; whining and waiting. And down she went, until her head swung against his; on all fours now, dragging her knees. The veins stood out in her neck, under her ears, swelled in her arms, and wide and throbbing rose up on her fingers as she moved forward.” (Djuna Barnes, Nightwood. New York: A New Directions Book, 2006:178-179.)

“It was like a trip into the labyrinths of the inner ear; no—this was a deeper exploration, a complex system of sequential convulutions, the linear geography of inwardness, a tracing of the mazes of the brain itself and I am Ariadne in the maze with this girl’s pale hand for a clue— mazes, spider-webs, but all progressing downwards, the brain-maze of interiority.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 56.)

“Sometimes I find where to put the many-lifed being that I am. Into elsewheres opened up by men who are capable of becoming women. For the huge machine that ticks and repeats its “truth” for all these centuries has had failures, or I wouldn’t be writing. There have been poets who let something different from tradition get through at any price—men able to love; therefore, to love others, to want them; men able to think the woman who would resist destruction and constitute herself as a superb, equal, “impossible” subject, hence intolerable in the real social context. Only by breaking the codes denying her could the poet have desired that woman. Her appearance causing, if not a revolution, harrowing explosions. Sometimes, moreover, it is in the fissure made by an earthquake, when material upheaval causes radical change in things, when all structures are momentarily disoriented and a fleeting savagery sweeps order away, that the poet lets the woman pass through for a brief interval.” (Hélène Cixous and Catherine Clément, The Newly Born Woman. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 1986: 98.)

“Berganza: I too, ever since I had the strength to gnaw a bone, have had the desire to speak, in order to utter things that had accumulated in my memory. For so long had those myriad thoughts settled there they had grown mouldy or had disappeared altogether. Now, however, seeing that I am suddenly and unexpectedly enriched with this divine gift of speech, I intend to enjoy it and


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take full advantage of it, hastening me to say everything that I can recall at once, even though it may come out muddled and confused, as I have no idea when I’ll be asked to hand back this gift, which, I fear, is only on loan.” (Cervantes, The Dialogue of the Dogs: 20.)

“A dog with a soul, you’ve got that right? You apes With heads of Socrates, false priests’ altar boys, retired professors of evil! I imagine cities so I can get lost in them. I meet other dogs with souls when I’m not lighting firecrackers in heads that are about to doze off. Blood-and-guts firecrackers. In the dark to see, you ass-scratchers! In the dark to see.” (Charles Simic cited in John T. Lysaker, “Extolling Art in an Intolerable World,” Journal of Speculative Philosophy, Vol. 21, No. 1, 2007: 59.)

“Leonard Diamond: Do you know Mr. Brown? Nils Dreyer: I had lunch with him last week. He's a very fine gentleman. Leonard Diamond: He's a hoodlum. Nils Dreyer: Because I have lunch with him, that is not a crime. I'll have lunch with anybody, I'm democratic. I'll even have lunch with you.” (Dialogue from The Big Combo, (1955), 1MDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047878/quotes.)

“For [General] William Childs Westmoreland the easy fight was the one in Saigon. […] “The state of mind at that time with respect to our posture in Khe Sanh,” Westmoreland noted in his diary, “was so tenuous that I wanted to put to bed once and for all any defeatism or negative attitude.” Westmoreland therefore requested his command historian’s opinion comparing Khe Sanh with Dien Bien Phu, plus a more general assessment of Khe Sanh against classic sieges. Classic sieges were high military science to Colonel Reamer W. Argo, command historian. Argo assembled a team and went to work on an analysis that he presented at a meeting in the late afternoon of February 11. The audience comprised the denizens of the so-called Pentagon East, chief among them Westmoreland plus a few outsiders such as the visiting General Bruce Clarke.”


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(Prados and Stubbe, Valley of Decision: 398-399.)

“Peneleos closed with Lycon— they’d missed each other with spears, two wasted casts, so now both clashed with swords. Lycon flailing, chopped the horn of Peneleos’ horsehair-crested helmet but round the socket the sword-blade smashed to bits— juast as Peneleos hacked his neck below the ear and the blade sank clean through, nothing held but a flap of skin, the head swung loose to the side as Lycon slumped to the ground … There— at a dead run Meriones ran down Acamas, Acamas mounting behind his team, and gouged his right shoulder— he pitched from the car and the mist whirled down his eyes. Idomenus skewered Erymas straight through the mouth, the merciless brazen spearpoint raking through, up under the brain to split his glistening skull— teeth shattered out, both eyes brimming to the lids with a gush of blood and both nostrils spurting, mouth gaping, blowing convulsive sprays of blood and death’s dark cloud closed down around his corpse.” (Michael Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: How Soldiers Die In Battle. New York: Crown Publisherss, 2012: 22.)

“When all of the bravest of the Trojans had died and many of the Argives – some killed and some were left – and Priam’s city was sacked in the tenth year, and the Argives went back in their ships to their dear native land, then did Poseidon and Apollo take counsel to sweep away the wall, bring against it the might of every river that flows north from Ida’s mountains to the sea.” (Barry B. Powell, The Iliad by Homer. New York and London: Wiley-Blackwell Publishers, 2007: 128.)

“Why did the Greek sculptor give form again and again to war and combat in innumerable repetitions: distended human bodies, their sinews tense with hatred or with the arrogance of triumph; writhing bodies, wounded; dying bodies, expiring? All of Greek civilization agreed with Hesiod who, on the one hand, called Eris evil—Eris the one who leads men into hostile


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fights of annihilation against each other—and, on the other hand, praised Eris and called him good—Eris the one who, as Jealousy, Envy, and Hatred, spurs people to activity, not to the activity of fights of annihilation, but the activity of contests. “No one is the best,” the Ephesians declared, “for then the content would come to an end and the eternal source of life for the Hellenic state would be endangered…” Without the contest in Greek life, there was only terrifying hatred and lust to annihilate.” (Kathy Acker, In Memoriam to Identity. New York: Pantheon Books, 1990: 49.)

“The Trojan War and a long tradition of erotic quests represent the other side (the lover’s) of this stereotypical activity. Pursuit and flight are a topos of Greek erotic poetry and iconography from the archaic period onward. It is noteworthy that, within such conventional scenes, the moment of ideal desire on which vase-painters as well as poets are inclined to focus is not the moment of the coup de foudre, not the moment when the beloved’s arms open to the lover, not the moment when the two unite in happiness. What is pictured is the moment when the beloved turns and runs. The verbs pheugein (“to flee”) and diōkein are a fixed item in the technical erotic vocabulary of the poets, several of whom admit that they prefer pursuit to capture. “There is a certain exquisite pleasure in the wavering of the balance” Theognis says of such erotic tension. Kallimachos characterizes his own eros as a perverse hunter “bypassing games that lies available, for it knows only to pursue what flees (Epigrammata 31,5.6).” (Carson, Eros: 19-20.)

“Finally, inasmuch as inversion itself springs from the fact that the invert is too closely akin to woman to be capable of having any effective relations with her, it relates to a higher law which ordains that so many hermaphrodite flowers shall remain infertile, that is to say to the sterility of self-fertilisation. It is true that inverts, in their search for a male, often content themselves with other inverts as effeminate as themselves. But it is enough that do not belong to the female sex, of which they have in them an embryo which they can put to no useful purpose, as happens with so many hermaphrodite flowers, and even with certain hermaphrodite animals, such as the snail, which cannot be fertilized by themselves, but can by other hermaphrodites. In this respect the race of inverts, who readily link themselves with the ancient East or the golden age of Greece, might be traced back further still, to those experimental epochs in which there existed neither dioecious plants nor monosexual animals, to that initial hermaphroditism of which certain rudiments of male organs in the anatomy of women and of female organs in that of men seem still to preserve the trace.”


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(Marcel Proust, Sodom and Gomorrah, cited in Malcolm Bowie, Freud, Proust and Lacan: Theory as Fiction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988: 78.)

“Only the Paris Commune, as the first (and only?) post-bourgeois revolution, has perhaps displayed this degree of anarchist enthusiasm in its fight against all power, beliefs and institutions. But an explosion of languages, like that of our age, has rarely produced such a clear awareness of the closed nature of society and its safety mechanisms, which range from the group (the Family, the Nation, the State, the Party) to its rational and technological forms of discourse. In this place where discursive and rational coherence is burst asunder, the intellectual as the agent of discursive rationality, is the first to suffer the effects of its break-up [l’intellectual qui en est l’agent en subit le premier les effets]: his own identity is called into question, his dissidence becomes more radical.” (Julia Kristeva, “Dissident,” quoted in Peter Starr, Logics of Failed Revolt: French Theory After May ’68. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1995: 163-64.)

“How hollow this heart in the breast of the city! I search, I search. House, sidewalks, steps, monument, lampost, your industriousness. From the highest rampart—I look out. I search. On the highest rampart I receive no signal. From here I don’t see, for your clarity is impenetrable. From here I don’t see, but I sense that something is written in charcoal on a wall. On a wall in this city.” (Lispecter, “A Manifesto of the City,” in Lispector, Soulstorm: 142.)

“The Sophoclean language, and its ambiguity, reveal the gradual transition of the meaning of the word basanos from “test” to “torture.” […] Some of the semantic processes that transformed basanos as touchstone into the term for legal torture can be seen in the use of the term in the Oedipus Coloneus. This tragedy is only obliquely concerned with the process of democracy, with the new institutions of the mid-fifth century which mediated between the city’s aristocratic past and its democratic present. It speaks instead of the exhaustion of the political, of disillusionment with parties and with war, of metaphysical solutions to problems too bitter to be resolved in mortal agones.” (Page du Bois, Torture and Truth. London & New York : Routledge, 1991: 21-23.)


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“What song the Syrens sang, or what name Achilles assumed when he hid himself among women, although puzzling questions are not beyond conjecture.” (Sir Thomas Brown, “Urn Burial,” in Edgar Allen Poe, The Murders in the Rue Morgue: the Dupin Tales. New York, NY: Modern Library, 2006: 174.)

“The rehabilitation of clementia after Caesar’s death began among the legions. Antony and Octavian both responded to the importance of clemency among the troops, inviting their opponents’ forces to join them under blanket offers of pardon and sparing whole legions after battles. The two commanders publicized their mercy widely, creating a propaganda of clemency directed at the soldiers more than at the elite. The mercy was acceptable to soldiers but only gradually came to be publicly welcomed by the upper classes.” (Melissa Dowling, Clemency & Cruelty in the Roman World. Kalamazoo, MI: University of Michigan Press, 2005: 48.)

“The most important thing about all this is that I extended the condemnation which my exaggerated amount of reading had earned for me to a secret failure to perform my duty, and therefore arrived at the most depressing conclusions.” (Franz Kafka cited in Georges Bataille (trans. by Alastair Hamilton), Literature and Evil. New York: Urizen Books, 1973: 30-31).

“In the end, if we view the dependence of institutions on external conditioning as dehumanizing, then we had better become accustomed to living with dehumanization; for dehumanization will exist in every institution and form of social interaction. Marx’s and Nietzche’s efforts to locate the particular spheres of social interaction that make modern institutions dehumanizing are, therefore, in vain. No revolution, no matter how it is defined, can take us beyond institutions. If we are interested in eliminating some of the sources of dissatisfaction in our interactions with each other, indeed, if we are interested in using Marx’s and Nietzche’s insights to do so, then we must develop alternative understandings of the obstacles to our satisfaction. For dehumanization, as they understand it, is an immovable obstacle to the improvement of the world.” (Bernard Yack, The Longing for Total Revolution: Philosophic Sources of Social Discontent from Rousseau to Marx and Nietzche. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1986: 367-368.)


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“There is no such thing as leftist anti-Americanism. Anti-Americanism, too, is the progressivism of the imbecile.” (Bernard-Henri Lévy (Translated by Benjamin Moser)Left in Dark Times: A Stand Against the New Barbarism. New York: Random House, 2008: 128.)

“Once a critical threshold of decoding has been crossed, as it is in the case of Baudelaire, the system of codes (or “socio-symbolic order”) comprising a culture implodes, and the binary oppositions that once structured and sustained it no longer hold: good and evil, base and noble, nature and culture, man and woman, sacred and profane – all lose their stability and henceforth float freely, subject to dizzying reversals and perverse appropriations. Taking leave of movements such as romanticism and realism, Baudelaire rails against the “esprit de systém” and proudly claims the right of self-contradiction: the modernist will try to make the most of modern instability: his works both exploit and aggravate it.” (Eugene Holland, Baudelaire and Schizoanalysis: The Socio-Poetics of Modernism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993: 15-16.)

“Cinema newsreel: the invasion of the Marianas, including Guam. The impression is not of battles, but of civil engineering and blasting operations undertaken with immeasurably intensified vehemence, also of “fumigation,” insect-extermination on a terrestrial scale. Works are put in hand, until no grass grows. The enemy acts as patient and corpse. Like the Jews under fascism, he features now as merely the object of technical and administrative measures, and should he defend himself, his own action immediately takes on the same character. Satanically, indeed, more initiative is in a sense demanded here than in old-style war: it seems to cost the subject his whole energy to achieve subjectlessness. Consummate inhumanity is the realization of Sir Edward Grey’s humane dream, war without hatred.” (Theodor W. Adorno quoted in Detlev Claussen, Theodor W. Adorno: 149.)

“The soldier wakes up in the night with a start. The blue lights that hang from the ceiling are still burning. There are three of them, on the line of the room’s main axis. In one movement the solider has thrown off his blankets and sat up on the edge of the bed with both feet on the floor. He was dreaming that the alert had sounded. He was in a winding trench, the top of which was on a level with his forehead; in his hand he was holding a sort of elongated grenade whose delayed-action mechanism he had just set off. Without wasting a second he had to throw the thing out of the trench. He could hear the noise of the timing-mechanism, like the ticking of a


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cheap alarm-clock. But he just stood there, grenade in hand, his arm stretched out as at the beginning of a throw, but for some incomprehensible reason paralysed, becoming more and more rigid, less and less capable of moving even a finger as the moment of the explosion approached. He must have yelled aloud to jerk himself out of the nightmare.” (Robbe-Grillet, In the Labyrinth: 101.)

“In the tank battle round Ponyri station on 7 July, ‘everything was on fire, both vehicles and people.’. Almost every house and village for miles around had been destroyed. Red Army soldiers were horrified by the badly burned tank crewmen carried past them. ‘A lieutenant, wounded in the leg and with a hand torn off, was commanding a battery attacked by tanks. After the enemy attack had been halted, he shot himself because he did not want to live as a cripple.’ Mutilation was the greatest fear of all Red Army soldiers. This was hardly surprising when considering the way their disabled comrades were treated. Limbless veterans were callously known as ‘samovars.’” (Beevor, The Second World War: 477.)

“It is indescribable! Nothing but fragments lying, for several meters, one next to the other. Pieces as big as my hand, and bigger … but just pieces, hardly anything whole, often just a fragment of an arm, or a leg, carelessly lying next to one another, and a fragment of body to which they belong, nearby. There’s a torso of one figure with the head of another pressed against it, with an arm of a third … as if an immense storm, an unprecedented catastrophe had passed through this work. And yet, the closer you look at it, the more deeply you feel, that everything would be less unified, if the individual bodies were whole. Every one of these fragments is of such an eminent, gripping unity, so possible by itself (indeed not thinkable otherwise), that one forgets that they are only parts and often parts of different bodies, they seem so attached to one another. You suddenly feel that it is whole, and much more than that of the to create new relationships between these fragments, new, greater, more law-abiding unities, --more eternal.” (Rainer Maria Rilke, Notebook, quoted in Peters, The Mutilating God: 92.)

“General Principles A. For the Defense


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1. To keep troops on the defensive under cover from fire as long as possible. As we may be attacked, consequently may have to defend ourselves at any moment, except when we are ourselves acting on the offensive: we must therefore always take up a position as much under cover as possible. 2. Not to bring the whole force into action at once. If this fault is committed, all rational guidance of the combat is at an end; it is only with disposable troops that we can turn the course of a battle. 3. To trouble ourselves little about the width of our front, as it is a matter of little consequence in itself, and the depth of the position (that is, the number of troops placed one behind the other) is diminished by an extension of the front. Troops which are in rear of the front line are disposable; they can either be used to restore the combat at that point or be brought forward at other adjacent points. This principle follows from the proceeding.” (Clausewitz, The Art of War: 752.)

“The everyday world that we know is not the known and recognized world. So that it can be presented in reality, it must be stripped of its intimately fetishized familiarity and revealed in its alienated brutality … For man to see the truth of his alienated everyday life … he must do “violence” to it. In what sort of society and in what kind of world must men “become” lice, dogs, and apes so that their true character can be adequately expressed? In what “violent” metaphors and allegories must man … be presented, so that … [men] can see their own faces and recognize their own world.” (Quoted in Alexej Kusák, “On the Marxist Interpretation of Franz Kafka,” in Franz Kafka: An Anthology of Marxist Criticism, ed. and trans. by Kenneth Hughs, Hanover, N.H.: University Press of New England, 1981, 100).

“The mixture of pain and pleasure, an intellectual tension accompanying the hard work of exegetical labor, is nothing less than the cognitive aspect of the ambivalence which inheres in the contemplation of any sacred object. Whatever is sacer must cause the shiver of mingled delight and awe that constitutes our sense of “difficulty.” (Angus Fletcher quoted in Jean Ellen Petrolle, Religion without Belief: Contemporary Allegory and the Search for Postmodern Faith. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2008: 89.)

“Legions of soldiers wearing coarse sky-blue or river-colored denim are hammering the azure of the heavens with their hobnailed boots. The planes are weeping. The whole world is dying of panicky fright. Five million young men of all tongues will die by the cannon that erects and


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discharges. There flesh is already embalming the humans who drop like flies. As the flesh perishes, solemnity issues forth from it. But where I am I can muse in comfort on the lovely dead of yesterday, today, and tomorrow.” (Genet, Our Lady of the Flowers: 87.)

“That was the whole problem: to create peaceful interstices in hell.” (Brock, The Guiltless: 206.)

“skin the mayfly dies this fire’s deadly bloom. over bending to his love like a dying man who strokes his tomb. What difference, then, from heaven or from hell, monstrous in simplicity? open me the way infinity?”

(randomly torn text fragment from Charles Baudelaire (Translated by James McGowan), The Flowers of Evil. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993.)

“To interrupt the course of the world—that was Baudelaire’s deepest intention. The intention of Joshua. [Not so much the prophetic one: for he gave no thought to any sort of reform.] From this intention sprang his violence, his impatience, and his anger; from it, too, sprang the everrenewed attempts to cut the world to the heart [or sing it to sleep]. In this intention he provided death with an accompaniment: his encouragement of its work.” (Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 318.)


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“THE ORIENTATION LECTURE HAS NOW BEEN GIVEN, the tinny computer voice said. They sure hadn’t wasted any money on the voice circuits for their wonderful war machine. “I am relieved to hear it,” I said. ‘THIS IS GOOD, MICHOLAI, WE WILL NOW START THE ADAPTATION PROGRAM. THE PURPOSE OF THIS EXERCISE IS TO FAMILIARIZE MY PROGRAM WITH THE IDIOSYNCRASIES OF YOUR BRAIN AND SPINAL CORD AND TO CALIBRATE MY CLUMSY VERBAL COMMUNICATION. TO DO THIS, YOU MUST TALK TO ME AT CONSIDERABLE LENGTH, AND OUT LOUD AT FIRST. LATER IT WILL BE SUFFICIENT IF YOU SUBVOCALIZE.’ “What do you want me to talk about?” THE SUBJECT MATTER IS UNIMPORANT. TELL ME A STORY OR RECITE A HISTORY LESSON. “What if I don’t want to?” I CAN’T DO MUCH FOR YOU UNTIL OUR LINKUP IS PROPERLY CALIBRATED. ONCE IT IS, I CAN MAKE LIFE VERY PLEASING FOR YOU.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 6-7.)

“Drive my dead thoughts over the universe Like withered leaves to quicken a new birth!” (Louis Zukovsky, quoted in Brown, Metamorphosis – And/Or – Apocalypse: 165.)

“Christ! He hadn’t realized how fast they were going, in spite of the road […]” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 242.)

“If we deconstruct Benjamin’s concept of allegory we find the following determinants, which describe the main aspects of textual production and reception: 1 The allegorist breaks an element out of its normal context. By doing so he isolates it, deprives it of its original function and meaning. An allegory is therefore a fragment in contrast to the organic symbol. As Benjamin puts it: with allegory ‘the false illusion of totality is extinguished.’ 2 The allegorist reassembles his fragments and creates a new meaning. This sort of meaning is constructed and derives in no way from the original context of the fragment. 3 Benjamin interprets the allegoric procedure as an expression of melancholy. Under the eyes of the melancholic (the one who turns his back on life and social activity, thus interrupting the coherence of his own totality of existence) objects are stunned. They lose the capacity to communicate meaning.


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The relation between allegory and melancholy leads to a further point: 4 Allegory represents history as decay. It exposes the image of a fragmented, paralysed history in the form of a frozen primal landscape.” (Geyer-Ryan, Fables of Desire: 21.)

“The intermittent rain began to soak into our clothes and weight them down. The pond gave off a faint smell. Two men began to snore. Throughout the night, which seemed interminable, I kept up a dull conversation with my companions, to prevent a nervous collapse. In the distance, we could hear the continuous rumble of our retreating trucks. Enemy action began again well before dawn. Flares above our position blinded us with their unexpected white lights. We looked at each other in wordless confusion. The intensity of this diabolic light threw a sinister, almost indecent glare on our ghostly faces.” (Sajer, The Forgotten Soldier: 105.)

“People around town like to say that Roland Jarvis blew himself up. The sound Jarvis heard immediately following the click of his lighter, though, was not anything like an explosion.” (Nick Reding, Methland: The Life and Death of a Small American Town. New York, NY: Bloomsbury, 2009: 41.)

“The body is a historical variable. There is a revolution in the body at the beginning of modern times; a revolution reflected in the philosophy of Hobbes and Descartes. The ruling principle departs from the body into separate substance, the soul, which confronts the body as absolute sovereignty, or will. “They who compare a city and its citizens, with a man and his members, almost all say, that he who hath the supreme power in the city, is in relation to the whole city, such as the head is to the whole man. But it appears by what hath been already said, that he who hath such a power, hath a relation to the city, not as that of the head, but of the soul to the body. For it is the soul by which a man hath a will; so by him who hath the supreme power, and no otherwise, the city hath a will.” (Thomas Hobbes, De Cive, quoted in Norman O’ Brown, Love’s Body. New York: Vintage Books, 1966: 137-138.)

“Clitoris


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Definition: the erectile organ of the vulva, homologous to the penis of the male. AKA: clit, knob, the little man in the boat. The head or glans of the clitoris is a simple bundle of 8,000 nerve fibers, estimated to be twice the number found in the penis, making it particularly well-suited for sexual stimulation.” (Natalie Angier, Woman: An Intimate Geography) (Alix Ohlin quoted in Sussman (ed.), Dirty Words: 51.)

“If there’s one thing that animals don’t need more information on, it’s sex. That’s because sex holds no mystery.” (Sy Freedman, Sex Link, quoted in Grosz, Space, Time, and Perversion: 187.)

“A human cast, cast in one mold and cast away into this cast, is called a kind [Geschlecht]. The word refers to mankind as a whole as well as to kinship in the sense of race, tribe, family— all of these in turn cast in the duality of the sexes. The cast of man’s “decomposed form” is what the poet calls the “decomposing” kind. It is the question that has been removed from its kind of essential being, and this is why it is the “displaced” kind. What curse has struck this mankind? The curse of the decomposing kind is that the old human kinship has been struck apart by discord of Geschlechter. Each of the Geschlechter strives to escape from that discord into the unleashed turmoil of the always isolated and sheer wildness of the wild game. Not duality as such, the discord is the curse. Out of the turmoil of blind wildness it carries each kind into an irreconcilable plot, and so casts it into unbridled isolation. The “fallen Geschlecht,” so cleft in two, can on its own no longer find its proper cast. Its proper cast is only with that kind whose duality leaves discord behind and leads the way, as “something strange,” into the gentleness of simple twofoldness following in the stranger’s footsteps.” (Martin Heidegger, “Language in the Poem,” quoted in Slavoj Žižek, The Parallax View. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2006: 70-71.)

“Finally, the inevitable happened. Doc met a woman on the subway. Her name was Dora. She listened quietly while Doc told her everything. ‘You don’t look like a man to me,’ Dora said. ‘You don’t smell like one, you don’t feel like one or act like one.’ ‘Okay,’ Doc said, trying to relax and trying on the label Anna at the same time. “Okay, but that woman in white really made me feel like one of the guys.’


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‘Well,’ Dora answered, ‘obviously you couldn’t give her what she needed.’ ‘What was that?’ ‘She needed you to prove that she is heterosexual.’ (Schulman, Empathy: 169.)

“He wishes he had never entered the funhouse. But he has. Then he wishes he was dead. But he’s not. Therefore he will construct funhouses for others and be their secret operator— though he would rather be among the lovers for whom funhouses are designed.” (John Barth, Lost in the Funhouse. New York, NY: Anchor Books, 1986: 97.)

“Miss Gulch: If you don't hand over that dog, I'll bring a damage suit that'll take your whole farm! There's a law protecting folks against dogs that bite!” (The Wizard of Oz: MGM 1939, 1MDB, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0032138/quotes.)

“The sulphur was lit, but the flame was so poor that only the top layer skin of the hand was burnt, and that only slightly. Then the executioner, his sleeves rolled up, took the steel pincers, which had been especially made for the occasion, and which were about a foot and a half long, and pulled first at the cal of the right leg, then at the thigh, and from there at the two fleshy parts of the right arm; then at the breasts. Though a strong, sturdy fellow, this executioner found it so difficult to tear away the pieces of flesh that he set about the same spot two or three times, twisting the pincers as he did so, and what he took away formed at each part a wound about the size of a six-pound crown piece.” (Michel Foucault (Translated by Alan Sheridan), Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison. New York: Vintage Books, 1979: 3-4.)

“It was a very distinct and very quiet sucking sound. It took about a quarter of a second for the ionized hydrogen in the hydrochloric acid to propagate from the lighter’s flame and into the drain. This made the entire basement into a vacuum. Jarvis heard a soft Whoomp!” (Reding, Methland: 41.)

“Let us seek death, or he not found, supply/With our own hands his office.”


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(John Milton, Paradise Lost quoted in Suannah B. Mintz, Threshold Poetics: Milton and Intersubjectivity. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2003: 161.)

“But from within the City John tunneled through the ground near Antonia, supporting the galleries with wooden props, and by the time the engines were brought up he had reached the platforms and left the works without solid support. Next he carried in faggots daubed with pitch and bitumen and set them alight, so that as soon as the props were burnt away the entire tunnel collapsed, and with a thunderous crash the platforms fell into the cavity. At once there arose a dense cloud of smoke and dust as the flames were choked by the debris; then when the mass of timber was burnt away a brilliant flame broke through. This sudden blow filled the Romans with consternation, the ingenuity of the Jews plunged them into despondency; as they had felt sure that victory was imminent the shock froze their hope of success even in the future. To fight the flames seemed useless, for even if they did put them out their platforms were already swallowed up.” (Josephus (G. A. Williamson, Translator), The Jewish War. Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin Books, 1977: 316.)

“The bourgeoisie, historically, has played a most revolutionary part. The bourgeoisie, wherever it has got the upper hand, has put an end to all feudal, patriarchal, idyllic relations. It has pitilessly torn asunder the motley feudal ties that bound man to his ‘natural superiors’, and has left remaining no other nexus between man and man than naked selfinterest, than callous ‘cash payment.’ It has drowned the most heavenly ecstasies of religious fervor, of chivalrous enthusiasm, of philistine sentimentalism, in the icy waters of egotistical calculation. It has resolved personal worth into exchange value, and in place of the numberless indefeasible chartered freedoms, has set up that single, unconscionable freedom – Free Trade. In one word, for exploitation, veiled by religious and political illusions, it has substituted naked, shameless, direct, brutal exploitation.” (Karl Marx and Friedrick Engels, The Communist Manifesto. London: Penguin Books, 2002: 222.)

“They exhumed a cadaver, they transported the pieces of an illustrious man to another place … This spectacle sickened us, a young man fainted …. Where had this illustrious man gone? Where was his glory, his virtues, his name? The illustrious man was something foul, undefined, hideous, something that spread a stench, something sickening to behold …. His glory? You see, he was treated like a worthless dog, for all these men had come there out of curiosity …. Impelled by the feeling that makes one man laugh at another’s torment.”


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(Jean-Paul Sartre (Carol Cosman, Translator), Gustave Flaubert: The Family Idiot, 1821-1857, Volume I. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1987: 464-465.)

“The most extreme case of abjection in the face of waste is the near-universal horror of confronting the corpse. In Kristeva’s view, the corpse, The most sickening of wastes, is a border that has encroached upon everything. It is no longer “I” who expel, “I” is expelled. The border has become object…The corpse seen without God, and outside of science, is the utmost of abjection. It is death infecting life. Abject. It is something rejected from which one does not part, from which one does not protect oneself as from an object. The corpse is a concretization of the subject’s inevitable future. It is intolerable because, in representing the very border between life and death, it shifts this limit or boundary into the heart of life itself. The corpse signifies the supervalence of the body, the body’s corporeal recalcitrance to will or consciousness. The cadaver poses a danger to the ego in questioning its solidity, stability and self-certainty.” (Grosz, Sexual Subversions, 75.)

“In the year 1180, the valley had again become a fertile and prosperous district. Several villages had arisen along the course of the river; and a town of some importance covered, as in former times, the western slope of the old cité Juliana, and extended them on the opposite shore. This town was then called Saint Julien. How was it that the cité founded by the Emperor Julian the Apostate had changed its appellation of Julianna for that of St. Julien? We shall not attempt to explain that fact.” (Eugene-Emmanuel Viollet-Le-Duc (Benjamin Bucknall, Translator), Annals of a Fortress: Twenty-Two Centuries of Siege Warfare. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2007: 157.)

“The proof-reader waits no longer, he rapidly descends the Esadinhas de Sāo Crispim and only pauses for breath after turning the bend where he is concealed from Costa’s searching eyes. He sits on a step to recover from his fright, shoos away a dog that has come up to him, its nose outstretched to catch his scent, and removes from his inside pocket the four pages he has extracted from the bundle of proofs, he unfolds them and smooths them out on his lap. The idea, which came to him as he watched the roof-top descending like steps as far as the river to the scant and rather dubious information provided by the historian, as he himself had the good grace to acknowledge. But here, right before Raimundo Silva’s eyes is a fragment, if not of


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the indestructible rampart itself, at least of a wall occupying the same space where the other stood, and descending all the way down the steps beneath the row of broad windows all the way down the steps beneath a row of broad windows surmounted by tall gables.” (Saramago, The History of the Sige of Lisbon: 59.)

“I will not be giving away a big secret—and perhaps it will just provoke a laugh—if I tell you that, for me, there seems to be no possible treatment of the question of metaphysics other than the dialectical one. Now, a dialectical treatment cannot suppose—and I come here to the specific nature of the experience I want to talk about—that the immutable is true and substantial while the transient is inferior and despicable, a mere mode or deception of the senses, as which it has been tirelessly denounced by philosophers since Plato. If we start from an awareness that, for us, the equation of the immutable with the good, the true and the beautiful has simply been refuted, then the content of metaphysics is changed…In the light of what we have experienced in our time—and I am aware that, in the face of these experiences, the form of a lecture, and the attempt even to touch upon such things in language of philosophy and the vantage point of a lectern, has something unseemly, ridiculous, even shameless about it (yet one cannot get away from it)—these experiences, I say, change the content of metaphysics. The mutual indifference of the temporal world and ideas, which has been asserted throughout metaphysics, can no longer be maintained.” (Theodor Adorno, Metaphysics, quoted in Hent de Vries, Minimal Theologies: 621-613.)

“’I saw the most beautiful castle that has ever appeared to any seer. Mirrors made up all its surfaces. Since it reflected everything, it must have been invisible. ‘This is what I saw: ‘Two mirrors, beings [sic] doors, opened, opened. I saw an old male creep. ‘Old male creep,’ I would have said if I hadn’t been dreaming.” (Acker, Don Quixote: 185.)

“By contrast, the purpose [of] the counterrevolutionary is negative and defensive. It is to restore order, to protect property, to preserve existing forms and interests by force of arms, where persuasion has already failed. His means may be political insofar as they involve the use of still more persuasion—the promise of social and economic reforms, bribes of a more localized sort, counter-propaganda of various kinds. But primarily the counterinsurgent’s task must be to destroy the revolution by destroying the promise—that means by proving, militarily, that it cannot and will not succeed.


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To do so will require the total defeat of the revolutionary vanguard and its piecemeal destruction wherever it exists. The alternatives will be to abdicate the military effort in favor of a political solution—for example, the partition of Viet Nam after the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu, the Algerian solution, etc., in other words, compromise or complete surrender.” (Robert Taber, War of the Flea: The Classic Study of Guerilla Warfare. Washington, DC: Potomac Books, Inc., 2002: 12-13.)

“It that the future state of man, his end? his death through insight? Does this account for the ambivalent attitude of man, though only of Western and especially of German man, towards the insight which is for him at once a winning of life and a winning of death, a lure and a dread? Does this account for the malignance of Western man? Bah, somehow man would save himself from this dilemma; he wouldn’t let himself be deprived of his lovemaking so easily, he would adapt it to the new insight, just as he would have to adapt his memory. Only for the world’s present moment is it a dilemma, only for this moment does it threaten the dissolution of being, only this moment would it be advisable to flee […]” (Broch, The Guiltless: 197-198.)

“[The transcript here contains a gap, which was presumably to be filled by a number of letters and the relevant commentaries.]” (Editor’s note in Walter Benjamin, “On the Trail of Old Letters,” in Walter Benjamin (Michael Jennings, Howard Eiland, and Gary Smith, Editors), (Rodney Livingstone, Translator), Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings: Volume 2, 1927-1934: 557. Cambridge, MA. and London, England: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1999: 557.)

“Last night looking out at—taking wild guess—Second Empire building. On corner. No. Likely slightly later: post-Commune. With flagrant stuck-on cement floral decoration. Swags. Bows. Bouquets. Such bogus use of robust new construction materials. B saying. Representing lowest point in architecture. Corresponding to period of greatest political depression. Following Commune defeat of 1871.” (Scott, My Paris: 18.)

“Le Gaulois had an entire catalogue of guilty female types which included prostitutes but was not limited to them ‘the amazons of the Commune, the incendiaries of the monuments of Paris, the poisoners of the French soldiers, the pimps and prostitutes of the Satraps of the Hôtel de


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Ville, the promulgatrices of God…and priestesses of Marat….the heinous shrews who invented the motto ‘murder and kerosene [pétrole].’” (Gullickson, Unruly Women of Paris: 178.)

“The road. When I could drive no more for weariness I huddled in the back of the car and uneasily dreamed for a few hours but I did not do that often. I was in a frenzy that precluded rest. I felt that I was in a great hurry but I did not know I was speeding towards the very enigma I had left behind—the dark room, the mirror, the woman. I did not know this destination exercised a magnetic attraction on me. I did not know I could not stop.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 39.)

“What is your opinion about applying metaphorical truth? My opinion is connected with the current idea that when we look at a particular sentence, we can think about logical truth, but when we want to interpret narratives as a whole, as [Hayden] White wants to do, we can’t apply any logical truth. We have to apply metaphorical truth, because it is not complex. Yes, but the question is whether metaphopr is pure fiction, or is an attempt to get hold of reality. I think, it’s not just pure fiction; it’s an attempt somehow to interpret reality and to find approximate concepts. I see that the borderline between fact and fiction is very elusive. We can have an account that is based very largely on factual materials or the events themselves, individual events that have been established through the critical analysis of sources. And yet when put together as a narrative, they may be highly ideological and may give us a very selective and distorted picture of a society or a culture. The great novel may often come closer to the reality of a society or a culture than a historical text. I think to some extent the historical text lies somewhere between factuality and fiction. Metaphors, of course, are inescapable in historical narrative, but they may well be heuristic means for understanding and interpreting a situation.” (George Iggers, “As Historians We Should Fight Against the Instrumentalization of Knowledge,” in Ewa Domańska, Encounters: Philosophy of History After Postmodernism. Charlosttesville and London: University of Virginis Press, 1998: 106.)

“At the same time, the unity and simplicity of the object-knowing machine is dissolved; the machine becomes an expressive multiplicity of semi-human aesthetic forms. Thus the human being becomes an imperfect machine, and the machine an imperfect human being, neither any longer capable of producing, only of expressing and propagating the horrors they have suffered. Perversely distorted, both now become destroyers; and real human beings, and real machines, are


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the victims of their mutual inversion. The expression-machine airplane drops bombs on production machines, as the mechanized bodies of soldier males annihilate bodies of flesh and blood. The libido of such men is mechanized and their flesh is dehumanized through mechanization.” (Klaus Theweleit, Male Fantasies, Volume 2: Psychoanalyzing the White Terror. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 1989: 199.)

“I have been a registered member of the Socialist Party, S.F.I.O. since the month of September 1921. That is what I wanted to tell you.” He is radiant with pride. He gazes at me, his head thrown back, his eyes half closed, mouth open, looking like a martyr. “That’s very fine,” I say, “that’s very fine.” (Sartre, Nausea: 115.)

“He said, “You should have listened to your prostate.” “What?” “You tried to predict movements in the yen by drawing on patterns from nature. Yes, of course. The mathematical properties of tree rings, sunflower seeds, the limbs of galactical spirals. I learned this with the baht. I loved the baht. I loved the cross-harmonies between nature and data. You taught me this. The way signals from a pulsar in deepest space follow classical number sequences, which in turn can describe the fluctuations of a given stock or currency. You showed me this. How market cycles can be interchangeable with the time cycles of grasshopper breeding, wheat harvesting. You made this form of analysis horribly and sadistically precise. But you forgot something along the way.” “What?” “The importance of the lopsided, the thing that’s skewed a little. You were looking for balance, beautiful balance, equal parts, equal sides. I know this. I know you. But you should have been tracking the yen in its tics and quirks. The little quirk. The misshape.” “The misweave.” “That’s where the answer was, in your body, in your prostate.” (Don DeLillo, Cosmopolis: A Novel. New York, NY: Scribner & Sons, 2004: 199-200.)

“Adorno expressed this association unmistakably when he wrote in a letter to Benjamin that “every reification is a forgetting.” The enigma of the commodity arises from its somehow


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unexpectedly having gotten implicated at the heart of the memory crisis. Adorno’s phrase then reappeared in Dialectic of Enlightenment in the analysis of what he and Horkheimer ironically term “the price of progress.” The centrality of the memory problem in the complex of processes that produce modernity under capitalism could hardly be made clearer.” (Richard Terdiman, Present Past: Modernity and the Memory Crisis. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 1993: 13.)

“Are you of heaven or the nether world? Charmed Destiny, your pet, attends your walk; Your scattered joys and sorrows at your whim, And govern all, and answer no man’s call. eauty, you walk on corpses, mocking them; ror is charming as your other gems, Murder is a trinket dancing the on your naked belly’s a candle where sing” (Randomly torn text fragment from Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil.)

“Doughface progressivism – the faith of the present-day fellow traveler – may be defined as progressivism kept alive by main force in face of all the lessons of modern history. It is this final fatuity of progressivism which has turned it into, if not an accomplice of totalitarianism, at least an accessory before the fact. For its persistent and sentimental optimism has endowed Doughface progressivism with what in the middle of the twentieth century are fatal weaknesses: a weakness for impotence, because progressivism believes that history will make up for human error; a weakness for rhetoric, because it believes that man can be reformed by argument; a weakness for economic fetishism, because it believes that the good in man will be liberated by a change in economic institutions; a weakness for political myth, because Doughface optimism requires somewhere an act of faith in order to survive the contradiction of history. The weakness of impotence is related to the fear of responsibility – a fear, that is, of making concrete decisions and being held to account for concrete consequences. Problems are much simpler when viewed from the office of a liberal weekly than when viewed in terms of what will actually happen when certain ideologically attractive steps are taken. Too often the Doughface really does not want power or responsibility. For him the more subtle sensations of the perfect


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syllogism, the lost cause, the permanent minority, where he can be safe from the exacting job of trying to work out wise policies in an imperfect world.” (Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. The Vital Center: The Politics of Freedom. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1949: 40-41.)

“In spite of this reasoning the soldier is still bothered by such a lapse in his memory. He wonders if something else in his surroundings may have escaped him, and still escapes him even now. It suddenly seems to him very urgent to make a precise inventory of the room. There is the fireplace, of which he remembers almost nothing: an ordinary black marble fireplace, above which hangs a large rectangular mirror; the iron shutter is raised, a pile of grey, feathery ashes can be seen, but no fire-dogs; on the mantlepiece lies a fairly long object, not very high—only an inch or less at its hightest part—which cannot be identified from this angle because it is not close enough to the edge of the marble […]; the mirror reflects the smooth, read satiny curtains, the vertical streaks of brightness on the folds…. The soldier has the impression that all this is nothing: in this room he should notice other details in particular, of which he was vaguely conscious when he entered here that other time, the day of the red wine and the slice of bread…He cannot remember what it was. He wants to turn round to look more carefully in the direction of the chest of drawers. But he cannot move, except very slightly, a kind of numbness paralysing his whole body. Only his hands and forearms move with any ease. ‘Is there anything you need?’ the young woman asks in her deep voice.” (Alain Robbe-Grillet (Translated by Christine Brooke-Rose), In the Labyrinth. London: Calder and Boyars, 1967: 163-164.)

“The helo had crashed in a natural bowl of snow and rock. The enemy fighters enjoyed prepared positions on two-thirds of the bowl’s rim, looking down. Even more perilous, the distance between the enemy and the Rangers was very narrow—some 60 feet of open ground separated enemy bunkers on the peak from Self and the others behind the rocks. Firing a recoilless rifle, AK-47s, and RPGs, they could hardly miss hitting the helo at a rapid rate from two entrenched positions—behind the low rock outcrop that Slab, Kyle, and Brett had used as cover and from two bunkers dug into a mountain to the immediate right of the outcrop. It dawned immediately on the Rangers’ leader, Nate Self, that they had no choice but to fight their way out. Nobody was coming to help them.” (MacPherson, Roberts Ridge: A Story of Courage and Sacrifice on Takur Ghar Mountain, Afghanistan. New York, NY: Dell Publishers, 2006: 168-169.)


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“He watched a good deal of television with half an eye, channel-hopping compulsively, for he was a member of the remote-control culture of the present as much as the piggy boy on the street corner; he, too, could comprehend, or at least enter the illusion of comprehending, the composite video monster button-pushing brought into being…what a leveler this remote-control gizmo was, a Procrustean bed for the twentieth century; it chopped down the heavyweight and stretched out the slight until all the set’s emissions, commercials, murders, game shows, the thousand and one varying joys and terrors of the real and the imagined, acquired an equal weight; - and whereas the original Procrustes, citizen of what could now be termed a ‘hands-on’ culture, had to exercise both brain and brawn, he, […] could lounge back in his Parker-Knoll recliner chair and let his fingers do the chopping.” (Salman Rushdie, The Satanic Verses. London and New York: Penguin Books, 1988: 405.)

“The conflation of sex and violence in the Greek mind can be traced through the language. Both lovers and warriors can mingle together: meignyni, Damazo could mean to slaughter or rape or subdue. Kredemna denotes either a city’s battlements or the veils of a woman. When Troy falls, both will be ripped and blasted – the thing they had hidden will be defiled and destroyed. Writers such as Thucydides and Euripides used the word eros in metaphors to describe the fever that roused men to fight. The Spartans sacrificed to the spirit of Eros before they went into battle.” (Bettany Hughes, Helen of Troy: Goddess, Princess, Whore. New York, NY: Knopf Publishing, 2005: 205.)

“Tyre, the city which he was to besiege in the fraught period between his initial success over Darius at Issus and culminating in his victory at Guagemala, never looked to yield to the berserk approach, nor did Alexander [the Great] contemplate it. An inhabited place to this day, scene of some of the bloodiest fighting in the Lebanese tragedy these last ten years, Tyre was important because its two harbours, located on the offshore of New Tyre, gave anchorage to one of the strongest of Persia’s fleets. Alexander could not continue his coastwise march into Egypt leaving the menace that force presented to his home base across his rear. From it the Persians could co-ordinate operations designed to dominate the eastern Mediterranean and Aegean or even rekindle the war in Greece.” (John Keegan, The Mask of Command: A Study of Generalships. London: Pimlico, 2004: 74.)


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“The dew-wet turf felt prickly; the dirt path—not any wider than the spread of your hand […] felt as sticky and tacky as a raw pike fillet gone bad. He was finishing the last of a string of tricked frags, the damp cool of the dirt seeping into his crotch and belly as he worked the last wire taut—a tight wire is harder to see, for some reason. Then he heard the unmistakable hush in the woods, a harsh muffled whisper, the tappety-tap clatter of the bamboo, the soft brush of metal through foliage. And in an instant his whole body tightened and tingled; he smelled the greasy, foul-water stink of Viets living a long time in the jungle, coming up the path. He judged another twenty paces and whoever it was would be upon him, stepping on his back. Immediately he set down his work and picked up a spare frag, gripping it tightly, and quickly pulled the pin, holding down the spoon, but ready to chuck it as far as he could. Then he felt in the grass for Lester’s .45, slipped the safety off—seven rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber. Lying on his belly, he tossed the frag—like shoveling off a forward pass; the thing carooming down the dirt path like an egg—ducked his head behind his arms, and counted off the fuse time: One-thousand-one, one-thousand-two, tone-thousand-three, one-thou--;” (Heinemann, Paco’s War: 194.)

“If everyone loved me I should find inexhaustible founts of love within myself. Evil begets evil. The first time we suffer, we see the pleasure to be had from torturing others. The idea of evil cannot enter a man’s mind without his wanting to fulfill it in practice. Someone has said that ideas are organic creations, that the moment they are conceived they have form, this form being action. The most active man is the one who conceives most ideas, and so a genius stuck in an office chair must either die or go mad, and, in the same way, a man of strong physique who leads a sedentary and temperate life will die of apoplexy. Passions are merely in their initial stage. They are the property of youth, and anyone who expects to feel their thrill throughout his life is a fool. Tranquil rivers often begin as roaring waterfalls, but no river leaps and foams all the way to the sea. Tranquility, however, is often a sign of great, if hidden, power. Intensity and depth of feeling and thought preclude wild outburst of passion; in pain and pleasure the soul takes careful stock of all, and sees that it must be. It knows that without storms the constant heat of the sun would dry it up. It gets steeped in its own experience, coddles and chides itself like a loved child. Only this higher state of self-knowledge can give man a true appreciation of divine justice.” (Mikhail Lermontov (Paul Foote, Translator), A Hero Of Our Time. London: Penguin Books, 1966: 104.)

“Predictably, a rebellious segment of the intellectual elite co-opted the masses’ vulgar antibourgeois stance. Gustave Flaubert championed this posture as a young man. He and his friends always ended their letters to each other with mock-polite scatological valedictions. In one letter


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written in his early twenties, Flaubert urged a companion to challenge conventional manners: “Let diarrhea drip into your boots, piss form the window, shout out ‘shit’, defecate in full view, fart hard, blow your cigar smoke in people’s faces…belch in people’s face.” (Paul Spinrad, The RE/SEARCH Guide to Bodily Fluids. San Francisco, CA: RE/SEARCH Publications, 1994: 113.)

“Then we heard the air rushing ahead of those rounds the same as a breezed through a cave— so sharp and cool on the face, refreshing and foul all at once—as though those rounds were floating down to us as limp and leisurely as cottonwood leaves. We looked down to us as limp leisurely as cottonwood leaves. We looked one another up and down one more time, as much as to say, “Been nice. See you around. Fucking shit! Here it comes.” (Heinemann, Paco’s Story: 15.)

“The great joy we experienced for the first time in the streets of Paris during May 1968, that joy in the eyes and on the lips of all those who for the first time were talking to each other, although complete strangers, this was exactly the joy that the individual lacks most, for he is a prisoner of his ‘private life’…the joy of making a collage of disparate situations, the joy of discovering differences, the joy of linking up solitudes, without for an instant losing the subtlest and most abstract movements of thought.” (Alain Jouffroy, “What’s to be done about Art? From the abolition of art to revolutionary individualism,” quoted in Alyce Mahon, Surrealism and the Politics of Eros: 1938-1968. New York & London: Thames & Hudson, 2005: 215.)

“The idea of counter-power and the idea of resistance against modern sovereignty in general thus becomes less and less possible…. A new type of resistance would have to be found that would be adequate to the dimensions of the new sovereignty…. Today, too, we can see that traditional forms of resistance, such as the institutional workers’ organizations developed through the major part of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries have begun to lose their power.” (Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, Empire, quoted in Gopal Balakrishnan, Debating Empire. London and New York: Verso Press, 2003: 64.)

“It is as if every valorization and every “politicization” of life (which, after all, is implicit in the sovereignty of the individual over his own existence) necessarily implies a new decision


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concerning the threshold beyond which life ceases to be politically relevant, becomes only “sacred life,” and can as such be eliminated without punishment. Every society sets this limit; every society—even the most modern—decides who is its “sacred men” will be. It is even possible that this limit, on which the politicization and the exception of natural life in the juridical order of the state depends, has done nothing but extend itself in the history of the West and has now—in the new biopolitical horizon of states with national sovereignty—moved inside every human life and every citizen. Bare life is no longer confined to a particular place or a definite category. It now dwells in the biological body of every living being.” (Agamben, Homo Sacer: 139-140.)

“’You see my dear love,’ said Clara, ‘these flowers are no creation of a diseased brain or a delirious genius… Nature made them. I told you nature loves death!’ ‘Nature creates monsters!’ ‘Monsters! Monsters! First of all, there are no monsters! What you call monsters are forms that are either beyond or outside of your imagination… Are gods not monsters? Itsn’t a man of genius a monster, like the tiger, the spider or any of the people who live above all social lies in the resplendent and divine immorality of things? But then, I myself am a monster?’ We were now walking between bamboo palisades covered all their length with honeysuckle, sweet-smelling jasmine, begonias, arborescent mallows, and climbing hibiscus not yet in flower. A menisperm was strangling a stone column with its innumerable lianas. At the top of the pillar was the grimacing face of a hideous divinity with ears spreading out like bats’ wings and hair ending up in spirals of flames. Incarvilleas, day-lilies, nightshade and delphiniums hid the base which was lost among their pink convulvoli, their scarlet thyrsus, their golden calyxes and their purplish stars. An ulcerous, vermin-eaten mendicant bronze who seemed to be the guardian of this place and who was training mongooses from Turan to make somersaults hurled insults at us when he saw us… ‘Dogs!.. Dogs!... Dogs!...’ We had to throw a few coins at this maniac whose insults surpassed anything the most filthy imagination could conceive in the way of outrageous obscenties. ‘I know him!’ said Clara. ‘He’s like the priests of all religions: he wants to frighten us into giving him a little money but he’s not a bad devil!’” (Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: 123-124.)

“The mouth is the beginning or, if one prefers, the prow of animals; in the most characteristic cases, it is the most living part, in other words, the most terrifying for the animal. But man does not have a simple architecture like beasts, and it is not even possible to say where he begins. He


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possibly starts at the top of the skull, but the top of the skull is an insignificant part, incapable of catching one’s attention; it is the eyes or the forehead that play the meaningful role of an animal’s jaws.” (Georges Bataille, “Mouth,” quoted in Georges Bataille (Translated by Allan Stoekl with Carl R. Lovitt and Donald M. Leslie, Jr.), Visions of Excess: Selected Writings, 1927-1939. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1985: 59.)

“Lucky:

Pozzo:

Estragon: Pozzo: Vladimir: Pozzo: Estragon: Vladimir: Pozzo:

“[…] alas alas on on the skull the skull the skull in Connemara in spite of the tennis the labors abandoned of stones in a word I resume alas alas abandoned unfinished the skull the skull in Connemara in spite of the tennis the skull alas the stones Cunard (mêlée, final vociferations) tennis…the stones…Cunard…unfinished… His hat! Vladimir seizes Lucky’s hat. Silence of Lucky. He falls. Silence. Panting of victors. Avenged! Vladimir examines the hat, peers inside it. Give me the hat! (He snatches the hat from Vladimir, throws it on the ground, tramples on it.) There’s an end to his thinking! But will he be able to walk? Walk or crawl! (He kicks Lucky.) Up pig! Perhaps he’s dead. You’ll kill him. Up scum! (He jerks the rope.) Help me!”

(Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot. New York: Grove Press, (1954) 1982: 29-30.)

“The two men had begun again to pull at the thongs, with their throats whistling and their sides heaving ever more quickly. But their strength was failing and ran out of their bodies in streams of sweat. It was all they could do to keep themselves erect and clasp the leather thongs with their stiffening, sprained fingers… ‘Dogs!’ shrieked the supervisor. A whiplash curled around their loins but they did not even react against the pain. It seemed that all feeling had gone from their overworked nerves. Their knees bent even more, shook and knocked together. All that remained of their muscles under their flayed skin contracted in tetanic spasms. All of a sudden, one of them came to the end of his tether, let go of the thongs, uttered a


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low harsh cry and fell with arms upflung near the corpse, his face to the ground, vomiting a flood of black blood. ‘Up you scum! Up you dog!’ cried the supervisor.” (Octave Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: Complete and Unexpurgated. Olympia, WA: Olympia Press, 2008: 137138.)

“Ah, the dogs!” said General von Schobert passing a hand over his face. They were “antiarmored-car dogs” that had been trained by the Russians to look for food under the armored cars. Kept without food for a day or two, they were brought to the front line whenever an attack was impending. As soon as the German Panzers appeared out of the woods and spread out fanlike on the plain, the Russian soldiers shouted “Pashol! Pashol!”—Off! Off!” and unleashed the famished pack. The dogs carrying the cradles on their backs loaded with high explosives and with steel contact rods like the aerials of a radar set-up, ran quickly and hungrily to meet the armored cars, in search of food under the German Panzers. “Die Hunde! Die Hunde!” shouted the soldiers around us. General von Schobert, deathly pale, a sad smile on his bloodless lips, passed a hand over his face, then looked at me and said in a voice that was already dead, “Why? Why? Even the dogs?” (Curzio Malaparte (Cesare Foligno, Translator), Kaputt. New York, NY: NYRB Classics, 2005: 229.)

“Kurtz: [intercepted radio message] I watched a snail crawl along the edge of a straight razor. That's my dream; that's my nightmare. Crawling, slithering, along the edge of a straight razor... and surviving.” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

“At bottom, we may say, the collector lives a piece of dream life. For in the dream, too, the rhythm of perception and experience is altered in such a way that everything – even the seemingly most neutral – comes to strike us; everything concerns us.” (Walter Benjamin (trans. by Howard Eiland and Kevin McLaughlin, ed. by Rolf Tiedermann), The Arcades Project. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1999: 205-206.)

“Eventually, a man speaking broken Polish approaches us, takes us to the ticket window, and then helps us board our train. And so begins yet another segment of this longest journey—all the


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longer because we don’t exactly know when it will end, when we’ll reach our destination. We only know that Vancouver is a very long way away.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 99.)

 “The author, having hung pictures of illusions all over, really should take them down as quickly as possible, breaking the thread of the narrative if only with this very sentence. But the author will not do so: he has sufficient right not to. Cerebral play is only a mask. Under the way beneath this mask is the invasion of the brain by forces unknown to us. And granting that Apollon Apollonovich is spun from our brain, nonetheless he will manage to inspire fear with another, a stupendous state of being which attacks in the night. Apollon Apollonovich is endowed with the attributes of this state of being. Once his brain has playfully engendered the mysterious stranger, that stranger exists, really exists. He will not vanish from the Petersburg prospects as long as the senator with such thoughts exists, because thought exists too.” (Andrei Bely, Petersburg, quoted in Robert Alter, Imagined Cities: Urban Experience and the Language of the Novel. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2005: 86.)

“A million eyes, a million boots in line, Without expression, waiting for a sign.” (W. H. Auden, The Shield of Achilles. New York: Random House, 1955: 35.)

“What a curious helmet you’ve got!’ she said cheerfully. ‘Is that your invention too?’ The Knight looked down proudly at his helmet, which hung from the saddle, ‘Yes,’ he said, ‘but I’ve invented a better one than that – like a sugar loaf. When I used to wear it, if I fell off the horse, it always touched the ground directly. So I had a very little way to fall, you see – But there was the danger of falling into it, to be sure. That happened to me once – and the worst of it


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was, before I could get out again, the other White Knight came and put it on. He thought it was his own helmet.’ The Knight looked so solemn about it that Alice did not dare to laugh. ‘I am afraid you must have hurt him,’ she said in a trembling voice, ‘being on the top of his head.’ ‘I had to kick him, of course,’ the Knight said, very seriously. ‘And then he took the helmet off again – but it took hours and hours to get me out. I was as fast as – as lightning, you know.’ ‘But that’s a different kind of fastness,’ Alice objected. The Knight shook his head. ‘It was all kinds of fastness with me, I can assure you!’ he said. He raised his hands in some excitement as he said this, and instantly rolled out of the saddle and fell headlong into a deep ditch.” (Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass: 87.)

“Capitalism in decline finds that whatever of quality it is still capable of producing becomes almost invariably a threat to its own existence. Advances in culture, no less than advances in science and industry, corrode the very society under whose aegis they are made possible. Here, as in every other question today, it becomes necessary to quote Marx word for word. Today we no longer look toward socialism for a new culture – as inevitably as one will appear, once we do have socialism. Today we look to socialism simply for the preservation of whatever living culture we have right now.” (Clement Greenberg, Horizon, September 1940, cited in John O’ Brian (ed.) Clement Greenberg: The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 1: Perceptions and Judgements, 1939-1940 Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1986: 41.)

“Following one of his trips outside, Jarvis looked down and saw what he thought was egg white on his bare arms. It was not egg white; it was the viscous state of his skin now that the water had boiled out of it. Jarvis flung it off himself, and then he saw that where the egg white had been he could now see roasting muscle.” (Reding, Methland: 42.)

“Cock ‘To dispel all myths, when cocks are flaccid, there is no easy way to determine what they will be like when they are hard. Conclusions cannot be drawn in the shower, from your basketball


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shoes, the distance between the tip of his thumb and baby finger, the hair on your chest, or the color and make of your car.’ (The Big Cock Society Home Page)” (T. J. Parsell cited in Sussman (ed.), Dirty Words: 54.)

“A girl stood before him in midstream, alone and still, gazing out to sea. She seemed like one whom magic had changed into the likeness of a strange and beautiful seabird. Her long and slender legs were delicate as a crane’s and pure save where an emerald trail of seaweed had fashioned itself as a sign upon the flesh. Her thighs, fuller and softhued as ivory, were bared almost to the hips where the white fringes of her drawers were like featherings of soft white down. Her slateblue skirts were kilted boldly about her waist and dovetailed behind her. Her bosom was as a bird’s soft and slight, slight and soft as the breast of some darkplumaged dove. But her long fair hair was girlish: and girlish, and touched with the wonder of mortal beauty, and her face. She was alone and still, gazing out to sea; and when she felt his presence and the worship of his eyes her eyes turned to him in quiet sufferance of his gaze, without shame or wantonness. Long, long she suffered his gaze and then quietly withdrew her eyes from his and bent them towards the stream, gently stirring the water with her foot hither and thither. The first faint noise of gently moving water broke the silence, low and faint and whispering, faint as the bells of sleep; hither and thither, hither and thither: and a faint flame trembled on her cheek. --Heavenly God! Cried Stephen’s soul, in an outburst of profane joy. He turned away from her suddenly and set off across the strand. His cheeks were aflame; his body was aglow; his limbs were trembling. On and on and on and on he strode, far out over the sands, singing wildly to the sea, crying to greet the advent of the life that had cried to him. Her image had passed into his soul for ever and no word had broken the holy silence of his ecstasy. Her eyes had called him and his soul had leaped at the call. To live, to err, to fall, to triumph, to recreate life out of life! A wild angel had appeared to him, the angel of mortal youth and beauty, an envoy from the fair courts of life, to throw open before him in an instant of ecstasy the gates of all the ways of error and glory. On and on and on and on! He halted suddenly and heard his heart in the silence. How far had he walked? What hour was it?” (James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artists as a Young Man, 185-186.)

“The “pure subject of the Enlightenment” is a monster which gives body to the surplus that escapes the vicious circle of the mirror relationship. In this sense, monsters can be defined precisely as the fantasmatic appearance of the “missing link” between nature and culture…. Therein consists the ambiguity of the Enlightenment: the question of “origins” (origins of


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language, of culture, of society) which emerged in all its stringency with it, is nothing but the reverse of a fundamental prohibition to probe too deeply into the obscure origins, which betrays a fear that by doing so, one might uncover something monstrous.” (Slavoj Žižek, Enjoy Your Symptom! Jacque Lacan in Hollywood and Out, quoted in Wolfe, Animal Rites: 108.)

“Dorothy: [has just arrived in Oz, looking around and awed at the beauty and splendor] Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore. Dorothy: [after a pause] We must be over the rainbow! [a bubble appears in the sky and gets closer and closer. It finally lands, then turns into Glinda the Good Witch wearing a spectacular white dress and crown, holding a wand] Dorothy: [to Toto] Now I... I know we're not in Kansas!” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“The loss of the language of communication is positively expressed by the modern movement of decomposition of all art, its formal annihilation. This movement expresses negatively the fact that a common language must be rediscovered – no longer in the unilateral conclusion which, in the art of the historical society, always arrived too late, speaking to others about what was lived without real dialogue, and admitting this deficiency of life – but it must be rediscovered in praxis, which unifies direct activity and its language. The problem is to actually possess the community of dialogue and the game with time which have been represented by poetico-artistic works.” (Guy Debord “Section 187” in The Society of the Spectacle. Detroit, MI: Black and Red, 2002.)

“Should we tell her about it? Now, what should we do? Well… What would you do If your mother asked you?” (Seuss, The Cat in the Hat: 61.)


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“All forms of beauty, like all possible phenomena, contain an element of the eternal and an element of the transitory—of the absolute and of the particular. Absolute and eternal beauty does not exist, or rather it is only an abstraction skimmed from the general surface of different beauties. The particular element in each manifestation come from the emotions: and just as we have our own particular emotions, so we have our own beauty.” (Baudelaire, “The Salon of 1846,” quoted in Mayne, Baudelaire: Art in Paris: 117.)

“There is a place where contrarieties are equally true. This place is called Beulah. […] And I am in Beulah, the place where contrarieties exist together.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 48.)

“The theorization of history as trauma seeks to disclose the force of historical representation, the violence of ideologies’ inscription of events along narrative and tropological models. Deconstructive approaches to the literary work thus tend to read the modalities of the text’s resistance to representation as signs of its historicity. Baudelaire’s rupture with the grand narratives of “History” is precisely what accounts for his historical status as our first “modern” poet. Indeed, the notion that Baudelaire’s exceptionality lies in his poetry’s stubborn refusal to integrate itself into a larger pattern of duration has been central to [Paul] de Man’s representation of the poet as the “emblem of tragic isolation of postromantic literature” (“Allegory and Irony,” 119) cut adrift from his predecessors, and of Benjamin’s vision of his poetry as shining “in the sky of the Second Empire as a ‘star without an atmosphere.’” (Sanyal, The Violence of Modernity: 25.)

“There were good reasons in the 1860s for the widespread recognition of prostitution as the most spectacular image of the bourgeoisie’s somewhat uneasy will to pleasure. The radical redesign of Paris undertaken by Baron Haussmann entailed the destruction of many of the working-class neighborhoods where brothels had thrived, for instance the alleys of the Cité where Sue’s Fleur-de-Marie had been led astray and the dilapidated areas near the Palais Royal where Balzac’s Esther Gobseck had lived. The working class was to a large extent displaced to the periphery of the city, as landlords in the central districts profited from the housing shortage to raise rents. High rents and complex official regulations made the opening of new maisons de


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tolerance in downtown Paris difficult and expensive, and the number of establishments diminished significantly (from 217 in 1852 to 152 in 1870, according to Maxime Du Camp). Large luxury bordellos were most likely to survive, whereas smaller enterprises were often transformed into lodging houses, or garnis, in which, after a legal decision of 1866, prostitution could be practiced virtually without penalty for the owner.” (Charles Bernheimer, Figures of Ill Repute: Presenting Prostitution in Nineteenth Century France. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 1989: 89.)

“As far as Rotton was concerned, the service represented a thanksgiving for deliverance of Good from the hands of Evil: ‘It would hardly be possible to conceive anything more impressive than this assembly,’ he wrote, ‘a small but victorious Christian force assembled within the Imperial Palace of the ancient Moslem capital of Hindustan, lining the four sides of that marble hall wherein the King and his advisers had not long before convened, plotting and determining evil against the British cause.’ And now the councils of evil men had been brought to nought, and every foul purpose of theirs completely frustrated, the triumphant army – the means which God had been pleased to employ in order to bring about these gracious ends – stood devoutly in the Divine presence, ascribing unto Him praise, and saying glory and honor, power and dominion are thine. One of the few women present, Mrs. Coopland, took Rotton’s view of events to an even more perverse extreme. ‘In this splendid hall,’ she wrote, ‘which once echoed to the mandates of a despotic Emperor, with sole power of life and death over millions of submissive slaves, now echoed the peaceful prayers of a Christian people.’” (William Dalrymple, The Last Moghul. London: Bloomsbury Press, 2009: 404.)

“But close up you could always see the defiance in their eyes, that hatred of America, the fire of the revolutionary that burned in their souls. It was pretty damn creepy for us, because this was the heartland of terror, the place where the destruction of the World Trade Center was born and nourished, perfected by men such as these. I’ll be honest, it seemed kind of unreal, not possible. But we all knew that it had happened. Right here in this remote dust bowl was the root of it all, the homeland of bin Laden’s fighters, the place where they still plot and scheme to smash the United States. The place where the loathing of Uncle Sam is so ingrained, a brand of evil flourishes that is beyond the understanding of most Westerners. Mostly because it belongs to a different, more barbaric century.”


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(Luttrell: Lone Survivor: 174-175.)

“The terror produced by the dialectical image is a fear of the system itself, and is therefore, the production of a critical subjectivity in the form of a recognition of its own domination. Mimesis serves to displace narcissism. Furthermore, the inducement of a mimesis opens the subject to the reconciling modes within mimetic rationality, the possibility of a form of rationality which could exist with otherness in a relation other than domination or fear.” (Alastair Morgan, Adorno’s Concept of Life. London and New York: Continuum International Publishing Group, 2007: 122-123.)

“The political problem is no longer just the problem of the future. A new problem has come to the fore, and democracy has had to emblazon its banner with the words: ‘The democratic and social Republic.’” (From La Réforme, 21 August 1848, quoted in Roger Price, Documents of the French Revolution of 1848. London: Palgrave MacMillan, 1997: 111.)

“The People’s Army were digging growing networks of approach trenches close to Dien Bien Phu’s perimeter strongpoints, and Colonel de Castries, the camp commander, was convinced an attack was imminent. On 11 March, General Cogny replied that his Second Bureau reports of enemy ammunition movements indicated a probable date of 13-14 March. There was a resumption of the sporadic harassing fire from the Viet Minh artillery, which had begun at the end of January but had tapered off after 20 February. An accumulation of intelligence suggested that the Tuan Giao depots expected to issue food rations for 52,000 men during March and April. Such totals have been quoted carelessly elsewhere to exaggerate General Giap’s advantage; in sheer numbers of men he outnumbered the Dien Bien Phu garrison by five to one, but the proportion of those who were combat infantry was much lower. In the hills surrounding the valley he had assembled 28 infantry battalions; at full strength each should have had about 800 all ranks, giving a total of around 22,400 men. The average strength of the 12 French battalions was rather lower, but in infantry Giap barely had the superiority of three to one that is reckoned to be the minimum an attacker needs to overcome the inherent advantages enjoyed by a dug-in defender.” (Windrow, The Last Valley: 298.)


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“… I say nothing can expose a fortress to greater danger than having places of retreat into which the garrison may retire when they are hard pressed; if it were not for the hopes of finding safety in one post, after they abandoned another, they would exert themselves with more obstinacy and resolution in defending the first; when that is deserted, all the rest will soon fall into the enemy’s hands.” (Machiavelli, The Art of War: 185-186.)

“Instead of a refuge from the storm, America becomes the storm, threatening to visit its military might, and its unchallenged supremacy as the sole remaining superpower, on those who would resist its influence: the ‘enemies of freedom’…. The struggle to achieve this vision at home and overseas will require courage and perseverance but ultimately it will be successful because it is ‘the angel of God who directs the storm.’” (The theologian Michael Northcott quoted in Bernard Porter, Empire and SuperEmpire: Britain, America and the World. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2006: 110.)

“A dog’s sticks its head over a barricade. You can’t tell what the barricade is. The only event you see and you can see is the dog’s head.” (Acker, Don Quixote: 77.)

“In Mein Kampf, Adolf Hitler attacked prostitution as a major cause of Germany’s decline. The “prostitution of love,” he claimed, was responsible for the “terrible poisoning of the health of the national body” through syphilis. “Even if its results were not this frightful plague, it would nevertheless be profoundly injurious to man, since the moral devastations which accompany this degeneracy suffice to destroy a people slowly but surely.” According to Hitler, many of Germany’s troubles could be blamed on “this Jewification of our spiritual life and mammonization of our mating instinct” that threatened to annihilate future generations of healthy Germans. Hitler’s tirades about the moral and racial dangers of venal sex suggested that, once in power, the Nazis would show little tolerance for the persistence of “vice.” Paradoxically, however, state-regulated prostitution increased dramatically under Nazism. Especially during wartime, the regulated brothels became a key institution of Nazi sexual policy.” (Julia Roods, “Backlash Against Prostitutes Rights: Origins and Dynamics of Nazi Prostitution Policies,” quoted in Dagmar Herzog (editor), Sexuality and German Fascism. New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2005: 67.)


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“I addressed the ball. My brand-new golf shirt was wet with sweat. I remembered my opening line from that Ayn Rand play: Gentlemen of the jury—on the sixteenth of January—near midnight—the body of a man came hurtling through space, and crashed—a disfigured mass—at the foot of the Faulkner Building. That was just how I felt. “But you said—I mean, President Eisenhower said, and J. Edgar Hoover, Judge Kaufman, everybody: a crime that has endangered the lives of millions, maybe the whole planet--!” (Robert Coover, The Public Burning. New York, NY: Grove Atlantic, 1988: 87.)

“Octavian’s deliberate if erratic efforts to increase his reputation for clemency toward Roman soldiers began in the siege of Perusia during the winter of 40-41 BC, when, during the siege’s most desperate days, he accepted deserters from Lucius Antonius’s starving forces. His clemency to the fleeing soldiers and to a few of their officers led Lucius to hope that perhaps a peace with Octavian might be negotiable; if not, he feared he would lose his troops in a mass desertion. When Lucius’ ambassadors reached Octavian, they asked for and were promised an amnesty for the troops, and Octavian hinted at pardon for the others involved in the siege. When this embassy failed to gain a sufficiently firm promise of safety for the rest of the besieged, Lucius himself met Octavian between the two sets of fortifications. Appian presents as accurate an account of the conversation as he can gather from memoirs, probably Augustus’s own. In this exchange, Lucian argued that Octavian should show clemency to the besieged, if for no other reason than, for the future, men would learn that there was reason to come to terms with him and not to despair and to fight to the death. Octavian responded that Lucius and his forces were surrendering utterly and must place trust in Octavian’s justice.” (Dowling, Clemency & Cruelty in the Roman World: 48-49.)

“SCIENCE MUST BECOME ART Now we have yet to consider one condition which is more necessary for the knowledge of the conduct of War than for any other, which is, that it must pass completely into the mind and almost completely cease to be something objective. In almost all other arts and occupations of life the active agent can make use of truths which he has only learnt once, and in the spirit and sense of which he no longer lives, and which he extracts from dusty books. Even truths which he has in hand and uses daily may continue something external to himself. […] Knowledge must, by this complete assimilation with his own mind and life, be converted into real power. This is the reason why everything seems so easy with men distinguished in War, and why everything is ascribed to natural talent.”


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(Clausewitz, On War: 93-94.)

“’I’m only interested in abstract thought.’ But what do you and I do, not so much with our bodies, but with our needs? I remember waking up. First, I see your head. I see your eyes’re open and you’re looking at me. I have to smile because your obvious love for me makes me smile. My thumb and second finger hold between them your nipple, my bones. Your right hand’s fingers’re on my left nipple and my right hand’s fingers’re on your left nipple. My right hand’s fingers’re pulling back the extra skin of your cock tip and your lips’re contorted from the scream that’s coming out of your mouth, as your head turns right as I lift my body so that your cock finally hard is entering my cunt and you have to scream I remember waking.’ The women are shaving their heads.’” (Acker, Don Quixote: 59.)

“Gradually the objects in the turret became visible: the crew of the tank—for, I believe, these tanks did not hold more than two—were, so to speak, distributed around the turret. At first it was difficult to work out how the limbs were arranged. They lay in clumsy embrace, their white faces whiter, as those of dead men in the desert always were, for the light powdering of dust on them. One with a six-inch hole in his head, the whole skull smashed in behind the remains of an ear—the other covered with his own and his friend’s blood, help up by the blue steel mechanism of a machine gun, his legs twisting among the dully gleaming gear levers.” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 304-205.)

“MARS unhelmed and covered with blood: At first I fought alone;--singlehanded I would provoke a whole army by my insults,--caring nothing for countries or nations, demanding battle for the pleasure of carnage alone. Afterward I had comrades. They marched above their bucklers, with plumes loftily nodding, lances oblique. Then on we rushed to battle with mighty eagle cries. War was joyous as a banquet. Three hundred men strove against all Asia. But the Barbarians are returning and by myriads they come, by millions! Ah! since numbers, and engines, and cunning are stronger than valour, it were better that I die the death of the brave! He kills himself.”


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(Gustave Flaubert (Kitty Mrosovsky, Translator), The Temptation of St. Anthony New York and London: Penguin Classics, 1983: 150.)

“The American way of war includes in advance the enemy’s punishment, because vectors of armed hostility against the United States can only be presented as manifest criminals. In fact, this way of presenting things was also quite the norm in Cold War times, when Moscow was obstinately labeled “the world-base of all terrorism.” Declaring war against an enemy thus gets replaced with the issuing of an arrest warrant. The interpretative authority to declare the fighter of a foreign cause a terrorist enables whoever holds it systematically to shift the perception of terror from the level of methods to that of the opposing group, and in doing so to remove oneself from the picture. Warfare thus becomes indissociable from an extra-judicial trial. The victor’s anticipated justice comes to pass in the form of weapons research against the enemies of tomorrow and of the day after.” (Sloterdijk, Terror From The Air: 66.)

““Finest military intelligence in the world,” Colonel Tibbit-Noyse said, “and we can’t find their blasted army from one day to the next.” His black moustache was crisp in the wilting heat of the briefing room. Graham sat with half a dozen officers scribbling in notebooks balanced on their knees. Like the others, he let his pencil rest when the colonel began his familiar tirade. “We know the führer’s entrail-readers are prone to inaccuracy and internal strife. We know who his spies are and have been feeding them tripe for months.” (There was a dutiful chuckle.) “We know the desert tribesmen who have been guiding his armored divisions are weary almost to death with the Superior Man. For God’s sake, our desert johnnies have been meeting them for tea among the dunes! So why the hell—“ the colonel’s hand slashed at a passing fly”—can’t we find them before they drop the bloody shells into our bloody laps?” (Holly Phillips, “Virgin of the Sands,” in Claude Lalumière & Elise Moser (editors), Lust for Life: Tales of Sex & Love. Montréal158-159.)

“David Morley has argued that the ‘articulation of the domestic household into the ‘symbolic family’ of the nation … can best be understood by focusing on the role of media and communication technologies.’ One could argue that the articulation of the domestic home into the homeland of the nation is enabled in the context of post 9/11 fears by the practices of a consumerism of security. The militarization of the home is thus not only a means through which


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public fear of terrorism is mediated but is also a process through which the domestic household is articulated into the policies of the U.S. government after 9/11. Underlying both are notions of innocence and comfort: the home that must be defended from external threat is articulated as a site of innocence, and the desire to feel at home in the United States and in the world is enabled by the idea of comfort. These form parallels with the consumerism of patriotism and kitsch in that there is comfort, if not pleasure, in the feeling of belonging that patriotism brings.” (Marita Sturken, Tourists of History: Memory, Kitsch, and Consumerism from Oklahoma City to Ground Zero. Durham and London, Duke University Press, 2007: 41.)

“[On December 2, 2002 U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld] was handed a modest sheaf of papers, on the top of which was placed a single sheet, an “Action Memo,” headed “Counter-Resistance Techniques.” It had been drafted by William J. Haynes, trained at Harvard Law School, was Donald Rumsfeld’s most senior lawyer, and one of his closest and must trusted advisers. […] Attached to the memorandum was a paper trail of four short documents. First was a legal opinion by Lieutenant Colonel Diane Beaver, a Staff Judge Advocate at Guantánamo. Second, a request for approval of the new methods of interrogating detainees from Beaver’s boss, reservist General Major General Mike Dunlavey, the Army head of interrogation at Guantánamo whose regular job was as a judge in Erie, Pennsylvania. The third document was a memorandum from General Tom Hill, Commander of U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM, as it is known, has responsibility for all U.S. military activities in South America and Central America) and next up in Dunlavey’s chain of command; Hill was looking for new and lawful tools of interrogation. Last and most important was a list of eighteen techniques of interrogation, set out in a threepage memorandum from Lieutenant Colonel Jerald Phifer.” (Philippe Sands, Torture Team: Rumsfeld’s Memo and the Betrayal of American Values. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2009: 3-4.)

“I’m not talking about Russia or America. I’m not even talking about politics. I’m talking about your bodies, the ones stretched out on this beach, the ones you’ve just smeared with suntan oil. Some of you are over-weight and some of you are too thin, and some of you are very proud. You all know your bodies. You’ve looked at them in mirrors, you’ve waited to hear them complimented, or touched with love. Do you want what you kiss to turn to cancer? Do you want to take handfuls of hair from your child’s scalp? You see, I’m not talking about Russia or America. I’m talking about our bodies, which are all we have, and no government can restore one finger, one tooth, one inch of normal skin that is lost because of the poison in the air…” Did they listen?”


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(Cohen, The Favorite Game: 75.)

“’Only the poor, only through God, only the people you wipe your feet on, the poor in spirit, old men carrying their fathers and philosophers weeping in the dust. America perhaps, Don Quixote – ‘ he was still brandishing the sword, it was that sabre really, he thought, in María’s room – ‘if only you’d stop interfering, stop walking in your sleep…” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 372-373.)

“The reform of consciousness consists solely in … the awakening of the world from its dream about itself.” (Karl Marx cited in Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 456.)

“Meurs, vieux l^ache! il est trop tard!” “Die old coward! It’s too late!” (Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil: 163.)

“Quand’ ebbe ditto cio’, con li occhi torti riprese ‘l teschio misero co’ denti, che furo a l’osso, come d’un can, forti.” “When he had said this, with eyes askance he again took hold of the wretched skull with his teeth, which were strong on the bone like a dog’s.” (John Freccero (Edited by Rachel Jacoff), Dante: The Poetics of Conversion. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1988: 162.)

“That night Jenny tucked the covers of her bed around me gently and went out. I had dreams of severed heads. After a long time I woke up with Jenny’s arms around me. –“You’re having a terrible night, aren’t you?” she said. –I said nothing, pushing my face hard against the cold wall.”


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(William Vollmann, “Yellow Rose,” in Joel Rose and Catherine Texier (Eds.), Love is Strange: Stories of Postmodern Romance. New York and London: W.W. Norton & Company, 1995: 130-131.)

“Perhaps a different narrative will help, though it might be no less dire. In my view postmodernism, understood through the prism of poststructuralism, constituted a great critique of essentialist thinking – of what is proper to a given category or activity. It annihilated the very idea of the self-same, and launched an especially strong attack on the idea of the medium (this is explicit in Jacques Derrida’s essay “The Law of the Genre”). So the medium came under a concerted assault from the most sophisticated thinkers of the sixties and seventies, and that critique joined a similar attack in Conceptual Art on medium-specificity in art (that painting be only about the forms of painting, etc.); this was supported in turn by the reception of Duchamp at that time, which only underscored the Conceptualist contempt for the medium. And then video entered the field of aesthetic practice, which also disturbed the idea of the medium (it’s very hard to find the specificity of video). So post-structuralism, Conceptual art, Duchamp reception, video art: together they effectively dismembered the concept of the medium. The problem is that this dismemberment then became a kind of official position (the pervasiveness of installation art is one sign of this state of affairs), and now it’s a commonplace among artists and critics alike; it’s understood as a given. And if I as a critic have any responsibility now, it is to dissociate myself from this attack on the medium, and to speak for its importance, which is to say for the continuance of modernism. I don’t know if poststructuralism will help me do this, and thus I don’t know if I can maintain my earlier commitment to this methodological option.” (Rosalind Krauss in Hal Foster, Rosalind Krauss, Yve-Alain Bois, and Benjamin H.D. Buchloh, Art Since 1900: Modernism, Antimodernism, Postmodernism. New York: Thames and Hudson, 2004: 674.)

“The Grand Hotel Cockatoo As a service to the sleepless and dreamless, the staff of the Bald Cockatoo, using an auditorium converted to a dormitory, created “dreams to live in,” as they called them, which, like the featherless cockatoo’s predictions, were mostly happy and youthful ones, full of love, festivity, poetry, luxury, and transcendent beauty. Though they collected dreams and dream fragments from the parent hotel and from other hotels, as well, grand and ordinary, they rearranged the elements, collaging them into dreams that proved to be so delightful and reassuring that many regular Night Voyagers and clients of lesser but similar hotels, now preferred the Bald Cockatoo instead, flocking there in such numbers that the hotel was obliged to build wings and annexes of its own to accommodate them.”


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(Robert Coover, The Grand Hotels (Of Joseph Cornell). Providence, RI: Burning Deck Books, 2002: 51.)

“The idea of the hotel is the perfect opposite of the home,” declares anthropologist Mary Douglas, “not only because it uses market principles for its transactions, but because it allows its clients to buy privacy as a right of exclusion.” Douglas regards the idea of the hotel as “the standard ‘Other’” to the home. A hotel is a place “where every comfort has to be paid for, the mercenary, cold, luxurious counterpart against which the home is being measured.” She cites the cry of the typical exasperated parent: “March in and out, without so much as by your leave; do they think this is a hotel?”” (Garber, Sex and Real Estate: 141.)

“But this, of course, is the great allure of the hotel, to parent and child alike. Anonymity plus exquisite personal attention. A “valet” to park your car and another to press your suit, your shoes shined overnight, a “concierge” in the lobby to recommend a place to eat: the complete Upstairs-Downstairs euro-fantasy now available to the middle class. And as for buying privacy, what commodity is more coveted? Room service at all hours (free “Continental” breakfast) and the Do Not Disturb sign ready to be hung on the door.” (Garber, Sex and Real Estate: 141.)

“Then the curtain fell before my thoughts. The abyss opened. Darkness. I feel headlong. They say I made horrifying gurgling noises, that I foamed at the mouth. At a signal from my mother the guards—Eumelos’s men—gripped me under the shoulders and dragged me out of the hall, where (they tell me) it was so quiet that people could hear my feet scraping on the floor. The temple physicians crowded around me; Oenone was not admitted. I was locked in my room, so they say. I was bound to recover, the incident was trifling. Lightning swift the rumor spread among my brothers and sisters that I was mad.” (Christa Wolf, Cassandra: A Novel and Four Essays. New York, NY: FSG Adult, 1988: 58.)

“My memory of the other and of the other’s life differs radically from my contemplating and remembering my own life. Memory sees a life and its content in a different way formally; only memory is aesthetically productive […]. Memory of someone else’s life (although anticipation of its end is possible as well) provides the golden key to the aesthetic consummation of a person.


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An aesthetic approach to a living person forestalls his death, as it were – predetermines his future and renders his future redundant, as it were; immanent to any determinateness of inner life is fate. Memory is an approach to the other from the standpoint of his axiological consummatedness. In a certain sense, memory is hopeless; but on the other hand, only memory knows how to value-independently of purpose and meaning – an already finished life, a life that is totally present-on-hand.” (Mikhail Bakhtin, “Author and Hero,” cited in Tim Beasley-Murray, Mikhail Bakhtin and Walter Benjamin: Experience and Form. London: Palgrave MacMillan, 2008: 145.)

“They were around us, on top of us and between us,’ wrote an Untersturmführer with the 2nd Panzergrenadier Regiment. ‘We fought man to man.’ All German superiority in communications, movement and gunnery was lost in the chaos, noise and smoke. ‘The atmosphere was shocking,’ a Soviet tank driver recorded. ‘I was gasping for breath, with perspiration running in streams down my face.’ The psychological stress was immense. ‘We expected to be killed at any second.’ Those who were still alive and still fighting a couple of hours later were astonished. ‘Tanks even rammed one another,’ wrote a Soviet onlooker. ‘The metal was burning.’ The concentrated area of the battlefield was filled with burned-out armored vehicles, exuding columns of black, oily smoke.” (Beevor, The Second World War: 482.)

“We live in a society where a kind of Hegelian speculative identity of opposites exists. Certain features, attitudes, and norms of life are no longer perceived as ideologically marked. They appear to be neutral, non-ideological, natural, commonsensical. We designate as ideology that which stands out from this background: extreme religious zeal or dedication to a particular political orientation. The Hegelian point would be that it is precisely the neutralization of some features into a spontaneously accepted background that marks out ideology at its purest and at its most effective. This is the dialectical “coincidence of opposites”: the actualization of a notion or an ideology at its purest coincides with, or, more precisely, appears as its opposite, as nonideology. Mutatis mutandis, the same holds for violence. Social-symbolic violence at its purest appears as its opposite, as the spontaneity of the milieu in which we dwell, of the air we breathe.” (Slavoj Žižek, Violence. New York, NY: Picador, 2008: 36.)


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“Dennis: Come and see the violence inherent in the system. Help! Help! I'm being repressed! King Arthur: Bloody peasant! Dennis: Oh, what a giveaway! Did you hear that? Did you hear that, eh? That's what I'm on about! Did you see him repressing me? You saw him, Didn't you?” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0071853/quotes)

“As an angel innocent of linguistic and cultural traps G behaves as if he had no sex. All the same sex is there. He writes this to a woman. Perhaps he is acting as if he were a woman. Writing to a woman. But since he is not a woman the sentence represents something else again. What can we say about the deck chair? Does the deck chair have not a sex, a gender an orientation, a use, attributes? Everything perhaps hinges on the undecidable definition of the deck chair, a discreet and all the more insidious figure of the hermaphrodite; in the transgression of the literary genre; in the transgression of the sexual genre. I should have known the devil by the deck chair.” (Hélène Cixous, Manhattan: Letters from Pre-History. Fordham University Press, 2007: 98.)

“Can’t we be just good friends? You know that I’ve already the woman I want, and I’m going to marry her as soon as I can be done with this army business. Can’t you understand that I don’t want to get involved with another woman right now?” “Especially one who’s really a computer in a war machine, Mickolai? Your physiological reactions will tell me what they will tell me, so don’t you worry about it.” “Okay, I won’t,” I said, getting angry. I mean, forcing me to have a love affair with a goddamn army tank was quite another! It was not only illegal but downright immoral on top of it! Suddenly, the cheese cake stopped tasting good. “Hey, wait a minute. Are you trying to tell me you have feelings?” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 55.)

“By this time Vandover’s interest began to flag. Four times he had drawn and redrawn the articulation of the model’s left shoulder. As she stood, turned sideways to him, one hand on her hip, the deltoid muscle was at once contracted and foreshortened. It was a difficult bit of anatomy to draw. Vandover was annoyed at his ill success—such close attention and continued effort weaned him a little—the room was overheated and close, and the gas stove, which was placed near the throne to warm the model, leaked and filled the room with a nasty brassy smell. Vandover remembered that the previous week he had been looking over some old bound copies


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of l’Art in the Mechanics Library and had found them of absorbing interest. There was a pleasant corner and a huge comfortable chair near where they were in the reading-room, and from the window one could occasionally look out upon the street. It was a quiet spot, and he would not be disturbed all morning.” (Norris, Vandover and the Brute: 35.)

“’Impudent bitch!’ he shouts again: a hint of a smile lightly puckers the contours of the divine one’s cheeks. And here it is as though Diana, without even making a move, had already pierced him with the subtlest of her arrows: with one hand he tears him with the subtlest of her arrows: with one hand he tears away her silver bow, with the other he seizes by the wrist the hand with which the goddess was reaching for her quiver, and now begins to strike her on the ears with the bow; while she is lowering her head to avoid the bulls, her tunic falls, the belt comes undone, the quiver scatters on the ground, and at last he begins to thrash her buttocks, administering such a flogging as if to break the bow, the silver bow seeming to dance over Diana’s nether cheeks by itself […].” (Pierre Klossowski (Translated by Stephen Satarelli), Diana at Her Bath: The Women of Rome. East York, Toronto: Hushion House, 1990: 71-72.)

“From the stones she steps down into the pastures. As from one tier of a circus to the next. A gap time will fill. For faster than the stones invade it the other ground will break. This great silence evening and night. Then all along the verge the muffled thud of stone on stone. Of those spilling their excess on those emergent.” (Samuel Beckett, Nohow On: Company: Ill Seen Ill Said: Worstword Ho. New York, NY: Grove Press, 2008: 63.)

“Grey as usual. Black soot creeping in around casement windows. Papers scattered. Reams of curly fax pages. Filling corners. Also growing chaos in the street. Last night explosive demo. Nearly making me miss avant-garde party. At last invited to! Having run down for bottle of wine. Barricades everywhere. Rows and rows of cops. Helmets. Sticks. Pavés flying. Cops’ ranks growing thicker. Preventing marchers from approaching nearby ministerial buildings. And me from returning. Chez moi.” (Scott, My Paris: 122.)


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“Trains whistled from time to time and dogs growled now and then…Behind fragile fences kitchen gardens slept peacefully…Towards Paris was a large gleam because it’s a big city, with many lamp posts and luminous signs. Over the river, in the distance, a factory was still lit up…Intermittently everything was plunged into silence and then dragged out again by a train’s whistle, a dog’s bark, a cock’s crow or the purring of a car engine.” (Raymond Queneau, Le Chiendent, quoted in Michael Sheringham, Everyday Life: Theories and Practices of Surrealism to the Present. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006: 129.)

“Melians: But they still might send others. The Cretan sea is a wide one, and it is harder for those who control it to intercept others than for those who want to slip through to do so safely. And even if they were to fail in this, they would turn against your own land and against those of your allies left unvisited by Brasidas. So, instead of troubling about a country which has nothing to do with you, you will find trouble nearer to home, among your allies, and in your own country.’ Athenians: It is a possibility, something that has in fact happened before. It may happen in your case, but you are well aware that the Athenians have never yet relinquished a single siege operation through fear of others. But we are somewhat shocked to find that, though you announced your intention of discussing how you could preserve yourselves, in all this talk you have said absolutely nothing which could justify a man in thinking that he could be preserved. Your chief points are concerned with what you hope may happen in the future, while your actual resources are too scanty to give you a chance of survival against the forces that are opposed to you at this moment. Your will therefore be showing an extraordinary lack of common sense if, after you have asked to retire from this meeting, you still fail to reach a conclusion wiser than anything you have mentioned so far. Do not be led astray by a false sense of honor – a thing which often brings men to ruin when they are faced with an obvious danger that somehow affects their pride. For in many cases men have still been able to see the dangers ahead of them, but this thing called dishonor, this word, by its own force of seduction, has drawn them into a state where they have surrendered to an idea, while in fact they have fallen voluntarily into irrevocable disaster, in dishonor that is all the more dishonorable because it has come to them from their own folly rather than their misfortune. […]’ The Athenians then withdrew from the discussion.” (Thucydides (Rex Warner, Translator), History of the Peloponnesian War. Harrowsmith, Middlesex: Penguin Classics, 1954: 406-407.)


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“At every moment the relationship of power may become a confrontation between two adversaries. Equally, the relationship between adversaries in society may, at every moment, give place to the putting into operation of mechanisms of power. The consequence of this instability is the ability to decipher the same event and the same transformation either from inside the history of struggle or from the standpoint of the power relationship.” (Michel Foucault quoted in Hannssenn, Critique of Violence: 156.)

“Willard: My mission is to make it up into Cambodia. There's a Green Beret Colonel up there who's gone insane. I'm supposed to kill him. Chef: What? Oh, that's typical! Shit! Fuckin' Vietnam mission! I'm short, and we gotta go up there so you can kill one of our own guys? That's fuckin' great! That's just fuckin' great! Shit! That's fuckin' crazy! I thought you were going in there to blow up a bridge, or some fucking railroad tracks or something! Willard: I'm sorry. Look, I'll cut you loose here and you can turn around and... Chef: [interupting] No, no, we go together... on the boat! We came this far, so we go together. All the way! We'll take you up there, we'll go with you... but on the boat! Okay?” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

“By February, as the enemy noose around Khe Sanh drew tighter and it was apparent that a large ground attack was imminent, the major decided to have an escape tunnel dug from the bunker that served as his office to the outside. Despite the fact that his aboveground bunker was heavily fortified with sandbags and already had exits on two sides, the major did not want to take any chances. He ordered us to carry out his plan in our off hours. We dug a shaft eight feet deep, down through the hard clay then tunneled east until we were on the other side of the bunker wall. Where the shaft was to come up, the major had us build a sandbag parapet facing south. This is where he planned to make his “last stand.” Ludicrously, he had a difficult time deciding how it should end, that is, whether he should be shooting from the hip, at eye-level, or somewhere in between; so we enlisted men spent the next half-hour adding and removing sandbags from the little wall, while the major struck various poses with a .45 pistol in his hand. We thought this was all quite comical—until the tunnel collapsed on Teddy. Digging swiftly, we dragged him out by his feet unharmed. Things now changed. It was clear that the major had become dangerously delusional. Word reached his superiors in the COC, and he was ordered to stop construction of his escape tunnel. Yet, the major kept his command and, despite his eccentric, almost Queeg-like persona, survived Khe Sanh and returned to the United States unharmed.”


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(Michael Archer, A Patch of Ground. Central Point, OR: Hellgate Press, 2010: 157.)

“’Wow,’ Doc said. ‘You were looking for morality and personal recognition in the middle of serious tourism. That’s very Heart of Darkness of you. I mean, there’s no way to be there and be polite because your presence itself is rude. But geographically, we’re in the sphere of your humanity now. That’s what is up for consideration. If this was the World Court, probably no one would care. But that’s one of the strangest aspects of analysis, Anna. No one is looking at you but you. That, of course, has its ups and downs.’ ‘I know, Doc, it’s really confusing. I mean something different in the World than I mean in my world.’ “You watch,’ he said meekly, ‘You listen when people talk. You listen too closely. You listen so closely to find the meaning that you never find the meaning. ‘Not the meaning,’ she said, ‘But a meaning. If I look too closely I get these strange results that make it worth it. The same thing is true in love, Doc.’” (Schulman, Empathy: 126.)

“The Department of Sanitation detailed special patrols to hunt for the Jewish girls hiding in the grain and in the woods around the town. And so, when the brothel was officially opened with an inspection, very military in style, by the commander of the Eleventh Army, some ten pale trembling girls, their eyes scorched with weeping, received General von Schobert and his suite. All were young, a few were children. They did not wear those long silken loose gowns, red, yellow, and green, with wide sleeves that are the traditional uniform of eastern brothels. They just wore their best dresses, the simple and honest clothes of middle-class girls in the provinces, so that they looked like students-some of them were students-who had gathered in the house of a friend to prepare for some examination. Their appearance was humble, shy and frightened. I had seen them go by in the street a few days before the opening of the brothel, about ten of them. […] Two SS men armed with tommy guns followed them. Their hair was gray with dust, wheat ears clung to their skirts, their stockings were torn; one of them limped with one bare foot, carrying a shoe in her hand.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 303-304.)

“Political rights are already dead. The same level of education, commensurate wages in women’s professions, so that prostitution is not the only profitable business that was what was real in our program.”


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(Louise Michel, Memoiren, quoted in Raunig (Translated by Aileen Dierieg) , Art and Revolution: Transversal Activism in the Long Twentieth Century. New York, NY: Semiotext(e), 2007: 91. Michel is commenting on the social situation of women following the collapse of the Revolution of 1848 in France.)

“The enemy was especially formidable. An army was approaching of more than 4,000 Zulus under the command of King Cetshwayo’s brother, Prince Dabulamanzi. The latter had broken his brother’s orders on two counts: he was not to enter British-ruled Natal from Zululand— Rorke’s Drift was right across the border—and he was to avoid an assault on any British troops behind ramparts. Although Dabulamnazi found himself in command of two of the older divisions of Cetshwayo’s army—the some 3,000 to 3,500 warriors of the uThulwana and uDloko regiments were mostly married men between forty-one and fifty years of age—he had 1,000 younger unmarried men in their early thirties of the inDlu-yengwe. All had served in the reserve at Isandhlwana. Before the attack at Rorke’s Drift, they had spent the past few hours killing fugitives and the wounded who were crisscrossing the plain in their desperate efforts at escape. After his Zulus were safely across the Buffalo River into Natal, Dabulamananzi quickly united the three divisions and began preparations to have the entire force assault the British outpost.” (Victor Hanson, Carnage and Culture: Landmarks in the Rise to Western Power. New York: Anchor Books, 2002: 291.)

“Sade: the pleasure of reading him clearly proceeds from certain breaks (or certain collisions): antipathetic codes (the noble and the trivial, for example) come into contact; pompous and ridiculous neologisms are created; pornographic messages are embodied in sentences so pure they might be used as grammatical models. As textual theory has it: the language is redistributed. Now, such redistribution is always achieved by cutting. Two edges are created: are obedient, conformist, plagiarizing edge (the language is to be copied in its canonical state, as it has been established by schooling, good usage, literature, culture), and another edge, mobile, blank, (ready to assume any contours), which is never anything but the site of its effect: the place where the death of language is glimpsed. These two edges, the compromise they bring about, are necessary. Neither culture nor its destruction is erotic; it is the seam between them, the fault, the flaw, which becomes so. The pleasure of the text is like the untenable, impossible purely novelistic instant so relished by Sade’s libertine when he manages to be hanged and then to cut the rope at the very moment of his orgasm, his bliss.” (Roland Barthes (Richard Howard, Translator), The Pleasure of the Text. New York, NY: Farrar, Strauss, Giroux, 1975: 6-7.)


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“The maddest of all these mathematicians worked on Telstar before he came out here and he insists on using a Chinese method called the Shortest Path. He claims to have already come up with an approximate calculation which practically throws the switch into Present Time—now! He goes around with a button he made for himself, reading: BOMB NOW, pinned to his atomic clock. Feldzahler insists the whole thing be double-checked, of course, just to give them something to do, but even he has to admit that the very calculations in which they are engaged are a danger themselves. The Shortest Path, he claims, cuts swathes like cycles of light-years through the sea, the electro-magnetic sea which surrounds us. These very calculations are capable of pushing time further back than Fardism had ever dreamed of and, therefore, they are building up an electronic tidal wave capable of sweeping down and overwhelming the lot of us; switching our current. What happens then?” (Brion Gysin, The Process. New York, NY: Overlook Press, 2005: 289.)

“Time is embedded in space as it is in spacelessness, space is embedded in time as in timelessness; whether they exist or not, time and space are imbricated. All happening in the world—and without happening there is no world—all motions, all speech, all melody sustain this imbrication and are sustained by it; but in the indissoluble multiplicity of motion, in this truly musical chorus of tensions and lines, real and imagined, heard or seen, the imbrication develops into what it is, the multidimensional becomes visible to the eye in three-dimensional objects, a reality behind reality, a second—though by no means the ultimate—invisible reality, of which man is a part and in which he lives, independently of his here-and-now; regardless of how dressed in bright and dark colors, regardless of the bodies they concealed beneath their clothes, of whether they were young or old, male or female, regardless of their features, they were all transposed into a state of deeper and more real nakedness; outwardly and inwardly they were mere particles and drop in the great multidimensional wave that passed through them, yet lifted them up; regardless of the other components of their being: thing, flower, animal, landscape— and the same was true of things and flowers, of the landscape itself—they were all indistinguishably moved into the dynamic of infinitely many dimensions, moved into the realm where the existent plunges back into the nonexistent and thereby acquires a new force of reality rooted in a world of infinitely many dimensions.” (Broch, The Guiltless: 184-85.)

“I knew you’d be a good lover when I noticed you always smelt books before you read them – especially hardbacks…now make love to me.”


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(Mary Fallon, cited in Elizabeth Grosz, Space, Time, and Perversion. London and New York: Routledge, 1995: 173.)

“There was one Russian position after another. The roads were littered with vehicles destroyed by the Stukas. The bodies of men and horses lay on the ground, killed by bombs and machine-gun fire. It was a terrible sight. The infantry attack on the hill positions on the north slope took place about noon. The Russians withdrew following the first exchange of fire, apparently fearing encirclement. In spite of their retreat, almost half of the Russians were captured. Weak Soviet resistance was broken. In the distance Vielworth recognized the main road to Leningrad, over which Russian columns were pouring. ‘Move a pair of machine guns into position—quickly!” he ordered.” (Franz Kurowski (translated by David Johnston), Infantry Aces: The German Soldier in Combat in WWII. Mechanicsburg, PA: J.J. Fedorowicz Publishing Inc., 1994: 452-453.)

“—The time has come for you to join your comrades, to aid the workers, he told Christ, who agreed. It had been His idea all the while, only until Hugh had rescued Him those hypocrites had kept him shut up in the burning church where He couldn’t breathe. Hugh made a speech. Stalin gave him a medal and listened sympathetically while he explained what was on his mind. ‘True … I wasn’t in time to save the Ebro, but I did strike my blow—’ He went off, the star of Lenin on his lapel; in his pocket a certificate; Hero of the Soviet Republic, and the True Church, pride and love in his heart—” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 242.)

“The problem of evil is worth discussing only until we have finished with the idea of transcendency of some good or other which could dictate to man his duty. Until that time, the exalted representation of an innate “evil” will retain the greatest revolutionary value. Beyond that, I hope that man will be able to adopt with respect to nature a less haggard attitude than simply passing from adoration to horror. That, turning with all the greater curiosity towards it, he will manage to think of it more or less what Goethe though of one of his contemporaries when he said: “Do I love or hate Wieland? – I don’t know. – At heart I care about him.” (Breton, Mad Love: 95.)


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“It is the sovereign who, insofar as he decides on the state of exception, has the power to decide which life may be killed without the commission of homicide, in the age of bio-politics this power becomes emancipated from the state of exception and transformed into the power to decide the point at which life ceases to be politically relevant. When life becomes the supreme political value, not only is the problem of life’s non-value thereby posed, as Schmitt suggests but further, it is as if the ultimate ground of sovereign power were at stake in this decision. In modern bio-politics, sovereign is he who decides on the value or the non-value of life as such. Life—which, with the declaration of rights—now itself becomes the place of a sovereign decision. The Führer represents precisely life itself insofar as it is he who decides on life’s very bio-political consistency. This is why the Führer’s word, according to a theory dear to Nazi jurists […] is immediately law.” (Agamben, Homo Sacer: 142-143.)

“In mid-February, a doctor makes me a new treatment. My improvements, which owes much to the tenderness of my friends, ceases at once. The work at hand fills with doubles, with the ghosts of humans, whores, animals, as if I needed to reinforce, to prolong the tenderness of earthly exchanges in the life of those who embrace in their beyond.” (Guyotat, Coma: 91.)

“The case contains a large glass-and-chrome syringe notched off in quarter inches, a set of five large needles, and one big bottle of bluish, pearlescent poison. The two medics efficiently muscle through the crowd almost rowing with their shoulders. And when the executions begin, the medics stand on either side of a man, the first medic cuts the twisted-up thong with a jackknife, the man drops his arms—his sides relieved of the tension—sighing sharply as though enduring a burn. Then the medic takes up the hypodermic (the plunger with a large thumb ring), pinches a handful of flesh at the arm or the back of the neck, and stabs the needle in and squeezes the plunger home all in one motion. The executed man half gasps, as much from the surprise as from the sting of the needle, and suddenly shivers as if he’d been plunged into a cold bath of cracked ice. In that same instant, the executed man rolls his eyes back into his head and droops to the floor.” (Larry Heinemann, Paco’s Story: A Novel. New York, NY: Vintage, 2005: 142.)

“They made an immense human abattoir! I have seen days of blood…And as long as I live, wherever I can be heard, I will testify against this monstrous incarnation of egoism, of hypocrisy,


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and of ferocity, which the vulgar imbecile accepts under the name of the party of order…who can know the number of dead in a slaughter without end, in a massacre without judgment, which was essentially ruled by drunken soldiers and the political furor of officers? Ask the families who search in vain for a father, a brother, a missing son.”

(André Léo quoted in Carolyn J. Eichner, Surmounting the Barricades: Women in the Paris Commune. Bloomington and Indiana: Indiana University Press, 2004: 164.)

“He asked me what were the usual causes or motives that made one country go to war with another. I answered they were innumerable; but I should only mention a few of the chief. Sometimes the ambition of princes, who never think they have land or people enough to govern; sometimes the corruption of ministers, who engage their master in war, in order to stifle or divert the clamor of the subjects against their evil administration. Difference in opinions has cost many millions of lives: for instance, whether flesh be bread, or bread be flesh; whether the juice of a certain berry be blood or wine; whether whistling be a vice or a virtue; whether it be better to kiss a post, or throw it into the fire; what is the best color for a coat, whether black, white, read, or gray; and whether it should be long or short, narrow or wide, dirty or clean; with many more. Neither are wars so furious and bloody, or of so long a continuance, as those occasioned by difference in opinion, especially if it be in things indifferent.” (Swift, Gulliver’s Travels: 258.)

“Berganza: What I could tell you, Scipio, my brother, of the things I saw in that slaughterhouse, and of the extraordinary things that went on in their! The first thing you must realize is that all those who worked there, from the lowest to the highest, are people of limited conscience, without pity or mercy, with no fear of the King or his justice; and most of them have some girl on the side. They are like bloodthirsty birds of prey, keeping both themselves and their girlfriends with what they steal. Before dawn on the days when meat arrives, a large crowd of young men and women gathers at the slaughterhouse, carrying empty sacks which they fill with bits of meat, while the maids go off with the sweetbreads and almost whole sides of meat. No animal is slaughtered without these people carrying off their tithes and the best and most succulent morsels; and seeing that in Seville there is no single official supplier of meat, everyone can bring whatever they choose, and the first beast to be slaughtered is either the best or the cheapest, and under this state of affairs there is always an abundance.” (Cervantes, The Dialogue of the Dogs: 21-22.)


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“When the morning of 11 September dawned the men […] were surprised and amazed. What they saw in the early light of this clear day caused their hearts to beat faster. In the distance, illuminated by the first rays of the sun, were the domes of many churches and the roofs of large buildings. “That’s Leningrad!” said the Oberfeldwebel, as questioning voices grew louder. “Leningrad!” echoed the men in disbelief. If that was Leningrad, they could be in the city by tomorrow or the day after. That was the legendary city on the Neva; the objective toward which everyone had been striving during the past weeks of heat, rain and mud. It seemed to be within their reach at that point.” (Kurowski, Infantry Aces: 451-452.)

“I came upon a perfectly preserved dead waxwork German squad … that caused my mouth to open in wonder … [It] consisted of five German soldiers spread out prone in a semi-circular skirmish line. They were still staring forward, alert for signs of the Amis. Behind them, in the center of the semicircle, was an equally rigid German medic with his Red Cross armband who had been crawling forward to do his work. In his left hand, a roll of two-inch bandage; in his right, a pair of surgical scissors. I could infer a plausible narrative. One or more men in this group had been wounded, and as the medic crawled forward to do his duty, his intention was frustrated by an unspeakably loud sharp crack overhead, and instantly the lights went out for all of them. The episode was doubtless a tribute to our proximity artillery fuse, an invaluable invention which arrived on the line that winter, enabling a shell to explode not when it struck something but when it came near to striking something. Here, it must have gone off five or ten yards above its victims. Or perhaps the damage had been done by the kind of artillery stunt called time-on-target— a showy mathematical technique of firing many guns from various places so that regardless of their varying distances from the target, the shells arrive all at the same time. The surprise is devastating, and the destruction immediate and unimaginable …” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 293.)

“Schon das Echo der letzten Worte höre ich nicht mehr, ganz zu schweigen vom Eigenklang meiner Stimme, der Panzer hat beides mit seinem Motorenlärm überdroht, mit seines Kettenrasseln versöhnt....Worte wie Aufruhr und Bosheit, so sehr ich sie liebe...umgeben mich ungefragt....Hier zieht dich niemand heraus, denke ich, gnadenlos zuversichtlich, verstohlen und gleichzeitig froh....Alles was zu mir hereinkommt, muss auch wieder heraus, so herrscht immer ein Austausch...Kurzum, mein Panzer ist auch ein wohltemperiertes Klavier, Instrument für eine andere Art von....ach was.“


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“Already I no longer hear even the echo of the last words, to say nothing of the unique sounds of my own voice; the tank has drowned out both with the noise, of its engine, harmonized itself with its rattling chains….Words like Uproar and Malice, however much I like them…surround me without my permission….Here no one draws you out, I think, mercilessly confident, furtive, and at the same time, happy….Whatever comes into me, must also go out, so exchange always rules…In short, my tank is also a well-tuned piano, instrument for another kind of …ah, whatever!” (Grübein cited in Monroe, “Avant-Garde Poetries after the Wall,” 98.)

“[Their vehicle] drives heavily from bump to bump, holding the road well with its thousand hundredweight. The drivining depends on perfect co-ordination between Something and me. I watch the fuel, manipulate the gears, she keeps the speed steady and handles the steering wheel. The little orange lights flicker like stars on the grey control panel, each over well-lit letters that say Erase, Uninhibit, Shift Count, Pot Drawer, One-shot trigger and things like that. We thus have no need for a back-seat driver and our two sons can sleep behind the tarapaulin.” (Brooke-Rose, Such, quoted in Lawrence, Techniques for Living: 42.)

“They followed the edge of the trees in what he judged to be a southwesterly direction. He looked for patterns of stars he had seen earlier, while crossing the plain, constellations whose names he didn’t know but which he had studied carefully. But there was too much cloud cover now; he couldn’t find any markers up in the sky. They kept on going regardless, inertia, momentum, pushing them along at the edge of trees. It seemed it should be near dawn but they trudged on for a long time still in the blackness of night.” (Russ Schneider, The Siege: A Novel of the Eastern Front, 1942. New York, NY: Presidio Press, 2004: 414.)

“But, although we trudged long and far, we stayed in the forest, seemed to get no nearer to the railway track than when we’d started out, and the Escapee adopts a worried look. Has he taken a wrong turning, out here, where there are no turnings? Or, rather, in this trackless waste, at any single point one stands at an imaginary crossroads, at the confluence of all directions, one of which might be the right direction. And on we go, for fear of freezing to the spot if we stand still.” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 245.)


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“Our advanced guard consisting of Cavalry and Artillery had burst and squashed the dead bodies which lay swelled to an enormous size in the Chandni Chowk, and the stench was fearful. Men and officers were sick all around and I thought we would never get through the city. It was a ride I don’t ever care to take again, and the horse felt it as much as I did, for he snorted and shook as he slid rather than walked over the abominations with which the streets were covered.” (William Dalrymple, The Last Moghul: The Fall of a Dynasty, Delhi 1857. New York, NY: Knopf Publishing, 2007: 404-405.)

“The Jews, unable to leave the City, were deprived of all hope of survival. The famine became more intense and devoured whole houses and families. The roofs were covered with women and babes too weak to stand, the streets full of old men already dead. Young men and boys, swollen with hunger, haunted the squares like ghosts and fell wherever faintness overcame them. To bury their kinsfolk was beyond the strength of the sick, and those who were fit shirked the task because of the number of dead and uncertainty about their own fate; for many while burying others fell dead themselves, and many set out for their graves before their hour struck. In their misery no weeping or lamentation was heard; hunger stifled emotion; with dry eyes and grinning mouths those who were slow to die watched those whose end came sooner. Deep silence enfolded the City, and a darkness burdened with death. Worse still were the bandits, who broke like tomb-robbers into the houses of the dead and stripped the bodies, snatching off their wrappings, then came out laughing. They tried the points of their swords on the corpses, and even transfixed some of those who lay helpless but still alive, to test the steel. But if any begged for a sword-thrust to end their suffering, they contemptuously left them to die of hunger. Everyone as he breathed his last fixed his eyes on the Temple, turning his back on the partisans he was leaving alive. The latter at first ordered the dead to be buried at public expense as they could not bear the stench; later, when this proved impossible, they threw them from the walls into the valley. When in the course of his rounds Titus saw these choked with dead, and a putrid stream trickling from und the decomposing bodies, he groaned, and uplifting his hands called God to witness that this was not his doing.” (Josephus, The Jewish War: 319-320.)

“In Speak, Memory, Nabokov makes the poetic, or the playful speculation that Russian children before the Revolution—and his exilre—were blessed with a surfeit of sensual impressions to compensate them for what was to come. Of course, fate doesn’t play such premonitory games, but memory can perform retrospective maneuvers to compensate for fate. Loss is a magical preservative. Time stops at the point of severance, and no subsequent


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impressions muddy the picture you have in mind. The house, the garden, the country you have lost remain forever as you remember them. Nostalgia—that most lyrical of feeling—crystallizes around these images like amber. Arrested within it, the house, the past, is clear, vivid, made more beautiful by the medium in which it is held and by its stillness.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 114-115.)

“One of our informers undertook to count for us, one afternoon, passing sledges carrying corpses on one of Leningrad’s main streets. He saw over a hundred of them in less than an hour. In many cases the corpses are now piled up in yards or fenced in squares. One pile of corpses in the yard of a destroyed apartment block was measured: it was two meters high and over twenty meters long. Bodies are no longer being taken out of apartments anymore – but simply left in unheated rooms. In many air-raid shelters the dead are also left lying there. In the Alexandrovskaya Hospital there are about 1,200 corpses placed in unheated rooms, corridors and the yard outside. At the beginning of January the number of victims of starvation was being given as 2-3,000 a day. Now, towards the end of the month the rumour is that at least 15,000 people a day are dying – and over the last three months over 200,000 people have died. This is not a particularly large number in relation to the overall population. It must be taken into account, however, that the number of dead will increase greatly with every passing week of the present conditions, as long as hunger and cold continue. The food rations saved and distributed to people are having no real effect. Children are now particularly vulnerable to starvation – and small children, for whom there is no food, can be expected to die quickly. Recently, a smallpox epidemic is said to have broken out, which is also claiming many children’s lives.” (German Army Field Report, quoted in Jones, Leningrad: 199.-200.)

“No more fatherlands, no more hatred between brothers, pitting, one against the other, men who have never even laid eyes on one another. Replacement of the chauvinist’s narrow, petty attachment to his homeland with the open, fertile love of the whole of humanity, without distinctions of race or color. No more religions, forged by priests for the degradation of the masses and to afford them hope of a better life while they themselves savor this earthly life. Instead, the continual pursuit of the sciences, made accessible to everyone who may be inclined to study them, nursing men gradually towards a materialist consciousness.”


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(Emile Henry, “Letter to the Governor of the Conciergerie Prison,” quoted in Daniel Guérin, (Paul Sharkey, Translator), No Gods, No Masters: An Anthology of Anarchism. Oakland, CA: AK Press, 2005: 402.)

“The general feeling was that Dien Bien Phu was very solid, that the Viet Minh knew it and would not dare unleash a general assault. Doubtless they would continue their harassments, sound out various strongpoints, even try to take them – but in the opinion of the troops there was no possibility of a general and sustained action.” (General de Castries, in his report to the 1955 Commission of Inquiry, cited in Martin Windrow, The Last Valley: Dien Bien Phu and the French Defeat in Vietnam Cambridge: Da Capo Press, 2006: 299.)

“To do Evil for the sake of Evil is to do the exact opposite of what we continue to affirm is Good. It is to want what we do not want – since we continue to abhor the powers of Evil – and not want what we want, for Good is always defined as the object and end of the deepest will. This was Baudelaire’s attitude. Between his acts and those of the normal sinner there lay the same difference as between black magic and atheism. The atheist does not care about God because he has decided once and for all that He does not exist. But the priest of the black mass hates God because He is loveable; he scoffs Him because Him because He is respectable; he sets himself to denying the established order, but, at the same time, preserves this order and asserts it more than ever. Were he for a moment to stop asserting it his conscience would return to peace with itself. Evil would suddenly turn into Good and, transcending all orders which do not emanate from himself, he would emerge in nothingness, without God, without excuses, having assumed his full responsibility.” (Jean-Paul Sartre cited in Georges Bataille (trans. by Alastair Hamilton), Literature and Evil. New York: Urizen Books, 1973: 21.)

“And we remembered too the days when it had been dark and freezing with a film of ice on the blackened porch and the steps, and the lamp going until ten o’clock in the morning. And the ships that would steer by dead reckoning listening for the echo of their hooters from the bank, though we could hear their engines, as we heard a ship’s engine now, going very softly: Frère Jacques Frère Jacques Dormez-vous? Dormez-vous?


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And the snowstorms in which there was no echo. And the sense of the snow driving on the night in the world outside too, and such a storm as would yield no echo. And ourselves seemed the only lamp of love within it.” (Malcolm Lowry, Hear Us O Lord From Heaven Thy Dwelling Place & Lunar Caustic. Harmondsworth, Middlesex: Penguin Books, 1979: 279.)

“Then he lay back in the dark and did not think at all and only felt the weight and the strangeness inside, and she said, “Now you can tell who is who can you?” “No.” “You are changing,” she said. “Oh you are. You are. Yes you are and you’re my girl Catherine. Will you change and be my girl and let me take you?” “You’re Catherine?” “No. I’m Peter. You’re my wonderful Catherine. You’re my beautiful lovely Catherine. You were so good to change.” (Ernest Hemingway, The Garden of Eden, quoted in Wolfe, Animal Rites: 144.)

“On the following day, when the first ranger patrols, their hair singed, their faces blackened by smoke, cautiously stepped over the warm ashes in the charred forest and reached the lakeshore, a horrible and amazing sight met their eyes. The lake looked like a vast sheet of white marble on which rested hundreds upon hundreds of horses’ heads, they appeared to have been chopped cleanly with an axe. Only the heads stuck out of the crust of ice. And they were all facing the shore. The white flame of terror still burnt in their wide-open eyes. Close to the shore a tangle of wildly rearing horses rose from the prison of ice.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 55.)

“Valiant knight, do not take umbrage or consider the present setback as some piece of ill luck, because it could well happen that this stumble straightens the crooked path of your fortune; for heaven, in strange, mysterious, roundabout ways, inconceivable to man, raises the fallen and makes the poor wealthy.” (Cervantes, Don Quixote: 894-895.)

“Satan! My Spectre! I know my power thee to annihilate And be a greater in thy place, & be thy Tabernacle


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A covering for thee to do thy will, till one greater comes And smitten me as I smote thee & becomes my covering Such are the Laws of thy false Heavens! But Laws of Eternity Are not such: know thou: I come to Self-Annihilation Such are the Laws of Eternity that each shall mutually Annihilate himself for others good, as I for thee.” (William Blake, Jerusalem, quoted in Slavoj Žižek and John Milbank (Creston Davis, Editor), The Monstrosity of Christ: Paradox or Dialectic? Cambridge, MA and London: The MIT Press, 2009: 267.)

“What we – the moderates, the immense majority of Frenchmen – need is the Republic and order. That is to say, no more clubs that stir up and deprave the people day after day…..The Republic with a system of taxes that will not ruin the rich or well-to-do citizens. – a ruin detrimental to the poor because making it impossible for the rich to employ them – and that will not cause the disappearance from our country, together with all the wealth, of our luxury industries which are the staple of our export trade.” (From Le Constitutionnel, 5 December 1848, quoted in Price, Documents of the French Revolution of 1848: 111.)

“Platons se froncer l’oeil austère ; on de l’excès des baisers, oire, aimable et noble terre, toujours inépuisés. on se froncer l’œil austère. e l’éternal martyre, x cœurs ambitieux, le radieux sourire bord des autres cieux ! l’éternel martyre !” (Random torn text fragment from Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil.)

“Art, like the counter-creation, aims at producing centers of de-realization where nothing is to be found but a universe-image born of a vivid and totalizing intuition present in a work in every


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single detail and in all of them together, just as the whole is present in the part. In short, this universe-image is understood everywhere as the secret and mutual appropriation of words or colors or sounds as the deepest essence of any element taken in particular, and as the unsayable meaning of the entire work in which it is manifest and which it overflows with its infinity. For example, if the word-image is like hell, here there must be an affinity between the torments of the damned and the objects that surround him; not that his environment is necessarily sinister; yet the splendor of the forest or of the ocean must by some sorcery express the same unsayable idea as does human suffering. Is this to say that meaning must be a thesis and that the novel, for example, must be written in order to demonstrate that we live in the realm of Satan? Not at all; we shall see […] that Gustave’s “idea”—the world is hell—is not only unsayable but unthinkable and, consequently, un-thought.” (Jean-Paul Sartre (Carol Cosman, Translator), The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 1852-1857. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1987: 308-309.)

“Between the eternal return and the simulacrum, there is such a profound link that one cannot be understood but through each other. What returns are the divergent series, that is to say, each of these series insasmuch as they shift their differences with all the others, as they complicate their difference in a chaos without beginning or end. The circle of the eternal return is always a decentered circle.” (Gilles Deleuze, The Logic of Sense, quoted in Juan Carlos Ubilluz, Sacred Eroticism: Georges Bataille and Pierre Klossowski in the Latin American Erotic Novel. Cranbury, N.J.: Associated University Press, 2006: 76-77.)

“[…] We’re surrounded!...The entire division has….been…surrounded! We already knew it, but hearing it officially made us horribly afraid. […] “We still have one hope,” he went on, “a swift and brutal breakthrough by all our forces pressing at a single point. This point must be to the west, and we shall engage all our units at once. The success of this attempt depends on the courage of every one of us. There will only be one attempt, and it must be successful.” (Guy Sajer, The Forgotten Soldier. Dulles, VA: Potomac Books, Inc., 2001: 249.)

“I have risen! I have risen!” (Robert Coover, “Pricksongs & Descants,” quoted in Brian K. Evanson, Understanding Robert Coover. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 2003: 184.)


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“Wicked Witch of the West: Just try and stay out of my way. Just try! I'll get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too!” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“Flag… How much more easily the leave-taker is loved! For the flame burns more purely for those vanishing in the distance, fuelled by the fleeting scrap of material waving from the ship or railway window. Separation penetrates the disappearing person like a pigment and steeps him in a gentle radiance.” (Walter Benjamin (Marcus Bullock and Michael W. Jennings), “One-Way Street,” in Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Volume I: 1913-1926. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press, 1996: 450.)

“I am the entirely universal, the completely indeterminable, abstract. Insofar as I set an empirical content in the I, i.e., apperceive it, it must come into this simplicity of the I. In order for a content to be able to enter into the One [das Eine], the simplicity of the I, it itself must be made simple and infected by simplicity. A content in consciousness thus becomes One, become my content. I am I, am One. Thus the thought is put into a unity and so becomes one…What thought produces is a unity, and thus it produces itself, for it is one…Whatever I touch must be able to be forced into these forms [of the synthesis of apperception] of unity.” (G.W.F. Hegel, quoted in Karl Ameriks, Kant and The Fate of Autonomy: Problems in the Appropriation of Critical Philosophy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000: 284.)

“What a curious helmet you’ve got!’ she said cheerfully. ‘Is that your invention too?’ The Knight looked down proudly at his helmet, which hung from the saddle, ‘Yes,’ he said, ‘but I’ve invented a better one than that – like a sugar loaf. When I used to wear it, if I fell off the horse, it always touched the ground directly. So I had a very little way to fall, you see – But there was the danger of falling into it, to be sure. That happened to me once – and the worst of it was, before I could get out again, the other White Knight came and put it on. He thought it was his own helmet.’ The Knight looked so solemn about it that Alice did not dare to laugh. ‘I am afraid you must have hurt him,’ she said in a trembling voice, ‘being on the top of his head.’


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‘I had to kick him, of course,’ the Knight said, very seriously. ‘And then he took the helmet off again – but it took hours and hours to get me out. I was as fast as – as lightning, you know.’ ‘But that’s a different kind of fastness,’ Alice objected. The Knight shook his head. ‘It was all kinds of fastness with me, I can assure you!’ he said. He raised his hands in some excitement as he said this, and instantly rolled out of the saddle and fell headlong into a deep ditch.” (Lewis Carroll: 87.)

“The theology of evil can therefore be derived much more readily from the fall of Satan…than from the warnings in which ecclesiastical doctrine tends to represent the snarer of souls. The absolute spirituality, which is what Satan means, destroys itself in its emancipation from what is sacred. Materiality – but here souless materiality – becomes its home. The purely material and this absolute spiritual are the poles of the satanic realm; and the consciousness is their illusory synthesis, in which the genuine synthesis, that of life, is imitated. However, the speculation of the consciousness, which clings to the object-world of emblems, ultimately, in its remoteness from life, discovers the knowledge of the demons.” (Benjamin, The Origins of German Tragic Drama, 230.)

“We left the circular path which branched out into other paths which snaked their way to the center of the garden and which passed alongside a hillock planted with a mass of rare and precious shrubs, and took a little path which took us across a hollow directly towards the bell. Both foot-tracks and paths were strewn with pulverized brick sand which gave the green of the lawns and the foliage an extraordinary intensity and a kind of emerald transparency, as though seen in the light of the chandelier. To our right there were flower-covered lawns; to our left, still more shrubs. We saw pink maples, streaked with pale silver, bright gold, bronze or red copper; manhonias with leaves the color of russet leather and as wide as coconut palm-leaves; eleagnus which seemed to have been covered with multi-coloured lacquers, pyrites and mica dust; laurels shimmering with veins the color of old gold surrounding embroidered silks and pin lace; blue, mauve and silvery arbor vitae spotted with sickly yellows and venomous oranges; yellow tamarisks, green tamarisks, red tamarisks with branches waving and undulating in the air like so many small seaweeds… “ (Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: 103.)

“To hell with all of this fucking scenery.”


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(Samuel Beckett, Malone, quoted in Ackerly and Gontarski, The Faber Companion to Samuel Beckett: ix.)

“Descend lower; while the world, in time, goes forward and so presents us with the illusion of motion, though all our lives we move through the curvilinear galleries of the brain towards the core of the labyrinth within us.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 40.)

“Willard: [voice-over] "Never get out of the boat." Absolutely goddamn right! Unless you were goin' all the way... Kurtz got off the boat. He split from the whole fuckin' program.” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

“It is a fundamental hypothesis of this handbook that these techniques…are in essence methods of inducing regression of the personality to whatever earlier and weaker level is required for the dissolution of resistance and the inculcation of dependence….[T]he circumstances of detention are arranged to enhance within the subject his feelings of being cut off from the known and the reassuring, and of being plunged into the strange… Control of the source’s environment permits the interrogator to determine his diet, sleep pattern and other fundamentals. Manipulating these into irregularities, so that the subject becomes disoriented, is very likely to create feelings of fear and helplessness.” (Kubarak, Counterintelligence Interrogation, quoted in Terrell Carver and Samuel Chambers, Judith Butler’s Precarious Politics: Critical Encounters. New York and London: Routledge, 2008: 211.)

“Interrogation Log of Detainee 063 Day 28 December 20 2002 1115: Told detainee that a dog is held in higher esteem because dogs know right from wrong and know how to protect innocent people from bad people. Began teaching detainee lessons such as stay, come, and bark to elevate his social status up to that of a dog. Detainee became very agitated… 1300: Dog tricks continued and detainee stated he should be treated like a man. Detainee was


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told he would have to learn who to defend and who to attack. Interrogators showed photos of 9-11 victims and told detainee he should bark happy for these people. Interrogator also showed photos of al-Qaeda terrorist and told detainee eh should growl at these people. A towel was placed on the detainee’s head like a burkha, with his face exposed, and the interrogator proceeded to give the detainee dance lessons…. 2200: The detainee was strip searched. Initially he was attempting to resist the guards. After approximately five minutes of nudity the detainee ceased to resist….He stated that he did not like the females viewing his naked body while being searched and if felt that if he could have done something about it then he would have….” (Sands, Torture Team: 106.)

“’What is this torture of the rat? asked Clara. “How is it that I don’t know of it?’ ‘A masterpiece, milady…a pure masterpiece!’ the fat fellow affrimed in a thunderous tone as h let his flaccid body sink back even further into the grass. […] ‘…when he is naked you make him kneel, with his back bent, on the ground where you fasten him with chains riveted to iron collars around his neck, his wrists, his hams and his ankles…. Good! I hope I am making myself clear? You then take a large pot with a little hole pierced in the bottom—a flower pot, milady!—and put in it a very large rat which you should have deprived of food for two days previously in order to excite its ferocity. With the pot now inhabited by the rat, you apply it hermetically, like an enormous leech, to the buttocks of the condemned man, fastened to him with a leather strap around his… Ah, you see what I am coming to?...’ He maliciously looked at us from out of the corners of his half-shut eyelids, to judge the effect that his words were having on us.” (Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: 110-111.)

“On 2 September the bread ration was reduced for the first time (to a fourth of its previous level). On 4 September the first German shells exploded in Leningrad. On 6 September came the first bomber attack. He had never before seen any, let’s call it a, you know, exercise involving aerial explosives. Did you know that under ideal conditions bombs can express all eight degrees of the diatonic scale as they whistle down? Sometimes even the full chromatic scale can, well, anyhow it distracts me from the fear. Nina was still preparing earth walls, antitank ditches, barbed wire emplacements, pillboxes. Every morning he said goodbye to her forever. His mother was too old and sick for anything. The bones in her face, my God, and the


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way she coughs… On 8 September the Badayev warehouses were destroyed by incendiary bombs. The German tanks were now within ten miles of the city center.” (Vollmann, Europe Central: 195.)

“At this relatively late stage in the process of explicating background atmospheric realities by means of a technology-bolstered terrorism, the Hitler-factor marks a point of escalation. There can hardly be any doubt that, after 1941, it was through the metaphors of “pests” and “vermin” that the most exterminist intensification German “Jewish policy” was propagated; having been a constitutive element of the Hitler-forged Nazi party rhetoric since the early twenties, after 1933 they also became a sort of official rule of language for a subjugated German public. The pseudonormalizing effect of the expression Voksschädling (“public nuisance”: a term covering a vast semantic domain, including defeatism, black marketeering, anti-Führer jokes, criticizing the system, and a lack of belief in the future) helped contribute to the success with which leaders of the National Socialist Movement managed, if not to generalize their excessively idiosyncratic form of supposed hygiene, then at least to make it widely tolerable or imitable. At the same time, vermin and parasite metaphors also featured in the rhetorical arsenal of Stalinism, which developed the most comprehensive policy of camp terror, but without reaching the exterminative extremes practiced by the SS.” (Sloterdijk, Terror From The Air: 43.)

“… at Half–Mast When a person very close to us is dying, there is (we dimly apprehend) something in the months to come that—much as we would have liked to share it with him—could happen only through his absence. We greet him, at the last, in a language that he already no longer understands.” (Benjamin, “One-Way Street,” in Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Volume I: 450.)

“The dog drew near once more, now Raimundo Silva looks at it nervously, who knows if it might have rabies, for he once read, he no longer remembers where, that one of the signs of the dreaded disease is a drooping tail, and this one looks rather limp, probably because he has been ill-treated, for the animal’s ribs are sticking out, another sign, but this one is decisive, is that unsightly saliva trickling down the fauces and fangs, but this mongrel, is only Escadinhas de Sāo


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Crispim. The dog, let us rest assured, does not have rabies, perhaps if we were living in the time of the Moors, but nowadays, in a city like this, modern, hygienic, organized, even the sight of a stray dog comes as a surprise, it has probably escaped the net because of its preference for this remote, uphill route, which calls for nimble feet and the vigour of youth, blessings which do not necessarily coincide in dog-catchers.” (Saramago, The History of the Siege of Lisbon: 59.)

“Cunt (see also Pussy) Definitions: 1. The female genital organs 2. Offensive Used as a disparaging term for a woman. “Cu” and “koo,” both pronounced “coo,” were ancient monosyllabic sounds, implying femininity. “Coo” and “cou” are modern slang terms for vagina, based on these ancient sounds. Other vaginal slang words, such as “cooch,” “coot,” “cooter,” “coozie,” “coozy,” “cookie,” “choochy,” “chocha,” “cootch,” and “coochie snorcher” are extensions of them. “Coochie snorcher” appeared in The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could from The Vagina Monologues.” --American Heritage Dictionary (Jonathan Wilson cited in Sussman, Dirty Words: 70.)

“And some nights he dreams execution dreams. A group of soldiers, […], is led down a narrow, well-lit corridor—the hot-water piping overhead plenty warm, humming: the floors painted battleship grey, glistening with wax. The men are escorted into a small room of bare concrete, as crowded as a rush-hour elevator, everyone stuffy, hot and itchy. The group consists of one man from each platoon in three battalions of infantry—chosen by lot, volunteered—to be executed as punishment for some crime never mentioned. Cowardice? Mutiny? A fragging?” (Heinemann, Paco’s Story: 141.)

“Calm your fears,” said our guide, “you will not suffer the least hurt; but be ready for anything,” he added, speaking to the girl, “and above all see to it that you do everything that I tell you.” He had her remove all her clothes, loosened her coiffure, and indicated she was to leave her hair, which was superb, to hang free. Next, he bade her lie down upon the mattress surrounded


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by tall candles, enjoined her to feign death and to be exceedingly careful, throughout the whole of the scene to follow, neither to stir nor breathe more deeply than she had to.” (The Marquis de Sade (Compiled and Translated by Austryn Wainhouse & Richard Seaver), The 120 Days of Sodom and other writings. New York: Grove Press, 1965: 548.)

“Nature soon ends as we drive past the failing Ridgecrest Mall, half sheathed in plywood, the parking lot mostly deserted, interior lights in the pyramid-roofed galleria where Anna-Louise works bears the temperature and time: 52º, 4:04 P.M. Pacific War Time. (Well, all right, Pacific Daylight Time.) “I wonder,” says Anna-Louise, “if the future is going to be like the Ridgecrest Mall.” “How so?” “You know. Improvised, sort of. Solid cement and steel structures from our own era, but with cardboard and straw for windows. Exxon stations with the thatched roofs.” (Coupland, Shampoo Planet: 32)

“There is a place where contrarieties are equally true. This place is called Beulah.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 48.)

“[…] you gotta love me like I really am: Sam Slick the Yankee Peddler, gun-totin’ hustler and tooth-‘n’-claw tamer of the heathen wilderness, lusty and in everything a screamin’ meddler, novus ball-bustin’ ordo seclorum, that’s me, boy—and goodnight Mrs. Calabash to any damfool what gets in my way!” He licked his finger.” (Coover, The Public Burning: 531-532.)

“[…] no fingers no spoilt love […]” (Samuel Beckett, “Sanies I,” in Samuel Beckett (David Wheatley, Editor), Selected Poems: 1930-1989. London: Faber and Faber, 2009: 21.)


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“…I was therefore ordered to move about in my own shape knowing that I would end up losing it, deserted by it…that I’d end up losing myself in it….Nothing could withstand the story thus released, and the other thus becoming a black fire imposing itself on a white fire, a visible fire on an invisible fire, and the curves and the points—vowels, consonants—bodied forth the mouth of the procedure, ‘ink on parchment,’ the lowest river, the spring….Silence and activity. Production using me as its base, mirror, filter, thrust, me producing it, in my turn, in its permanent reserve of wellsprings…” (Philippe Sollers (Edited by David Hayman and Translated by Philip Barnard with David Hayman), Writing and the Experience of Limits. New York: Columbia University Press, 1983: xvi.)

“Psychoanalysis shows the sexual organization of the body physical to be a political organization; the body is a body politic. Psychoanalysis stands or falls on the expansion of the idea of sexuality to comprehend the entire life of the human body; attributing a sexual (“erotogenic”) action to all parts, organs, or “zones”; or rather, envisaging sexuality as an energy diffused throughout the whole body, and capable of displacement from one part to another, and of transformation from one mode of manifestation to another (polymorphism; metamorphosis). What the psychoanalytically uninitiated call “sex,” psychoanalysis calls ”genitality,” or “genital organization,” seeing in it an arrangement, a modus vivendi, a political arrangement arrived at after stormy upheavals in the house of Oedipus. The arrangement is to concentrate sexuality in one part of the body, the genital; this concentration, or organization, establishes the “primacy” of one “component-impulse,” which is now the “dominating” or “supreme” component-impulse in the sexual life of the body. It is, says Freud a well-organized tyranny, of a part over the whole.” (Norman O. Brown, Love’s Body. New York, NY: Vintage Books, 1966: 127.)

“I resent that, Mr. Blank, he says. You have no right to laugh at me. Maybe not, Mr. Blank says, once the spasm in his chest has subsided, but I couldn’t help it. You take yourself so damned seriously, Flood. It makes you look ridiculous. I might be ridiculous, Flood says, with anger rising in his voice, but you, Mr. Blank…you’re cruel…cruel and indifferent to the pain of others. You play with people’s lives and take no responsibility for what you’ve done. I’m not going to sit here and bore you with my troubles, but I blame you for what’s happened to me. I most sincerely blame you, and I despise you for it. Troubles? Mr. Blank says, suddenly softening his tone, doing his best to show some sympathy. What kind of troubles? The headaches, for one thing. Being forced into early retirement another. Bankruptcy for yet another. And then there’s the business with my wife, or rather my ex-wife, not to speak of my children, who no longer want anything to do with me. My life is in ruins, Mr. Blank. I walk


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around like a ghost, and sometimes I question whether I even exist. Whether I’ve ever existed at all. And you think learning about that dream is going to solve all this? It’s highly doubtful, you know.” (Auster, Travels in the Scriptorium: 59-60.)

“Poor things! Thinks our dreamer. And it is no wonder that he thinks of it! Look at these magic phantasms, which so enchantingly, so whimsically, so carelessly and freely group before him in such a magic, animated picture, in which the most prominent figure in the foreground is of course himself, our dreamer, in his precious person. See what varied adventures, what an endless swarm of ecstatic dreams. You ask, perhaps, what he is dreaming of. What ask that?— why, of everything…of the lot of the poet, first unrecognized, then crowned with laurels; of friendship with Hoffmann, St. Bartholomew’s Night, of Diana Vernon, of playing the hero at the taking of Kazan by Ivan Vassilyevitch, of Clara Mowbray, of Effie Deans, of the Council of the Prelates and Huss before them, of the rising of the dead in ‘Robert the Devil’ (do you remember the music, it smells of the churchyard!), of Minna and Brenda, of the battle of Berezina, of the reading of a poem at Countess V.D.’s, of Danton, of Cleopatra ei suoi amanti, of a little house in Kolomna, of a little home of one’s own and beside one a dear creature who listens to one on a winter’s evening, opening her little mouth and eyes as you are listening to me now, my angel…” (Dostoyevsky, White Nights and Other Stories: 180-181.)

“oh my body has become a terrible field of battle Cried E.C.R.” (Mary Fallon, Working Hot. Melbourne: Sybylla Co-operative Press&Publications Ltd.: 79.)

“For the two angels who were posted at the gates of Sodom to learn whether inhabitants (according to Genesis) had indeed done all the things the report of which had ascended to the Eternal Throne must have been, and of this one can only be glad, exceedingly ill chosen by the Lord, who ought to have entrusted the task to a Sodomite. Such a one would never have been persuaded by such excuses as “I’m a father of six and I’ve two mistresses,” to lower his flaming sword benevolently and mitigate the punishment.”


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(Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past, quoted in Colleen Lamos, Deviant Modernism: Sexaul and Textual Errancy in T.S. Eliot, James Joyce, and Marcel Proust. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998:173.)

“He returned his wandering thoughts to the subject of the metropolis. Its – he repeated to himself – long history as a refuge, a role it maintained in spite of the recalcitrant ingratitude of the refugees’ children; and without any of the self-congratulatory huddled-masses rhetoric of the ‘nation of immigrants’ across the ocean, itself far from perfectly open-armed. Would the United States, with its are-you-now-have-you-ever-beens, have permitted Ho Chi Minh to cook in its hotel kitchens? What would its MacCarran-Walter Act have to say about a latter-day Karl Marx, standing bushy-bearded at its gates, waiting to cross its yellow lines? O Proper London! Dull would be truly of the soul who did not prefer its faded splendors, its new hesitancies, to the hot certainties of the transatlantic New Rome with its Nazified architectural gigantism, which employed the oppression of size to make its human occupants feel like worms…” (Rushdie, The Satanic Verses: 399.)

“”The enemy’s artillery pounded the interior of his own position…to wipe out the attackers, while his garrison remained underground, to burst out at the opportune moment; at the same time a barrage of shells on our front line cut off all reinforcement and communication. We had not foreseen such tactics.” (North Vietnamese official account of action on Eliane 2, (Dien Bien Phu) 30/31 March 1954 cited in Windrow, The Last Valley: 453.)

“This tension between the tragic and ironic dimensions of the Recollections’ narrative shape is not the only complication in its diachronic development. The reader’s difficulty in finding a coherent plot in the Recollections’ narrative is one sign of the residual validity of the fact/fiction distinction. The “plot effects” to which we have called attention are not, after all, intended by the author in the strong sense we might expect in a work of fiction, nor are they consciously sought for on the part of the reader. They are secondary effects brought about by the reader’s intrinsic relation to time and narrative. Although the memoir conventions permitted Tocqueville to omit a greater part of the story of 1848 than he could have allowed himself in a continuous history, the text is, nevertheless, a history of 1848 in the sense that it can select by omission or at points eschew chronology in presentation, but it cannot invent episodes or conjure evidence. Moreover, the reader is told at the beginning of the text that the device of the secret mirror will reflect the truth in spontaneity rather than through a literary construction, thereby further disarming the reader’s expectation of literary effects. By seeking out the plot effects that work


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covertly on the reader, I have had to deliberately subvert normal genre conventions for “factual” works in order to bring forward the autonomy of writing.” (Shiner, The Secret Mirror: 75.)

“’Hector,’ said he, ‘thy heart suppos’d that in my friend’s decease Thy life was safe, by absent arm not cared for. Fool! He left One at the fleet that better’d him, and he it is that reft Thy strong knees that better’d him, and he it is that reft Thy strong knees thus: and now the dogs and fowls in foulest use Shall tear thee up, thy corpse expos’d to all the Greeks’ abuse.’ […] ’Dog,’ he replied, ‘urge not my ruth, by parents, soul, nor knees: I want to god that any rage wuld let me eat thee raw, Sliced into pieces, so beyond the right of law I taste thy merits, and believe it flies the force of man To recuse thy head from the dogs.’” (Homer, The Iliad: 363-364.)

“In the south, the Grossdeutschland Division’s advance became bogged down in a minefield made treacherously muddy by the storm of the night before. Pioneer battalions sent in to help the tanks came under heavy fire, and only a desperate charge by panzergrenadiers on foot managed to clear the Soviet defences covering the minefield. It still took many hours to extricate the tanks and clear paths through the danger zone. To dent German morale further, a brigade of new Panther tanks brought up in support again started to suffer from mechanical breakdowns. The problem was not just limited to the Panthers. ‘My division is already going to the dogs,’ wrote an Unteroffizier in the 4th Panzer Division. ‘Half-track breakdowns very many, Panzer no fewer, also the Tigers are not the true-love.’ But the advance resumed.” (Beevor, The Second World War: 475.)

“‘Do not think, my lords and ladies, that this dog only knows silly and frivolous tricks. Twenty-four tricks I have taught him, and a sparrowhawk would get up and fly for but the poorest of them. He can dance the sarabanda and the chaconne better than the original inventor. He can down a flagon of wine without spilling a drop; he can swing the sol-fa-mi-re as well as any sacristan. All these things, and many more that I still haven’t mentioned, your lordships will


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see in the days that the company remains here. But for now, let our wise dog do one more jump, and then we’ll get to the good stuff.’” (Cervantes, The Dialogue of the Dogs: 54.)

“Did Diana herself thus hope to create cause for astonishment, with her act of metamorphosis? With one hand she had just cast water in his face, but as she was pronouncing the sentence, already she was withdrawing the other hand from the space between her thighs, and whereas of that moment she had initiated Actaeon, or having already initiated him thus admitted him to her final rite, or whether, lastly, she thus put an end to her theophany, by this very gesture she uncovered her vermilion vulva, uncovered her secret lips: Actaeon sees those hellish lips open at the very moment that the spray of water streams over his eyes, blinds him and stands him up. His thought finds its fulfillment in the horns sprouting from his forehead, and the shock of such a realization drives him forward; his arms having become legs, his hands cloven hooves, he’s not even surprised to see them resting, in the twinkling of an eye, on the divine shoulders, his whole furry belly quivering against the dazzling skin of the goddess’s dripping flanks; and then suddenly the quivering is Diana’s own […].” (Klossowski, Diana at Her Bath: 66.)

“[…] a dog taking my jissom, my veins filled with spittle, with snot, with digestive juices…. Hungry dog, pull, untie, devour dead membranes blocking my arse, hanging from my member…. even aroused, they only harden by half… eat folds, fleshy seams.. gobble.. let your teeth, your lips, shape me a smooth body, full, polished… let contraction of toe shake back of head, contraction of member shake lips […].” (Guyotat, eden eden eden: 115.)

“’Since I love you, dog,’ Don Quixote said over and over to the dog, for she loved the dog, ‘my world is only dog, for love, by its nature, is total. Being my life and death, though if you went away from me – which, it being your nature, though if you went away from me – which, it being your nature, you must – I wouldn’t give a shit, you are my being. My very self. ‘What then,’ Don Quixote asked nobody in particular, being of a philosophical bent, ‘is this doggish being?’ ‘Since I love you, and that’s all I can do because I love you,’ she answered herself, ‘doggish being, like all being being itself, must be love. What is this, you or my sexuality?’”


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(Acker, Don Quixote: 126.)

“The dogs that know not their own master are mad dogs; the dogs of madness that tore Pentheus to pieces. Agave, his mother, knew not her own son. Lear’s daughters knew not their own father. There is a vase-painting of the stag-man, attacked by his own bitches, with Lady Madness driving them on. Sweet heavens, do not make me mad.” (Norman O. Brown, Apocalypse - And/Or – Metamorphosis. Los Angeles and Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1992: 32.)

“Who am I? Where am I? What if all memories or resources are merely train ballast with snow on it? Certainly I will someday resemble these bits of dead dog I’ve seen near the boxcar wheel.” (Vollmann, Riding Toward Everywhere: 181.)

“Bukharin: I won’t shoot myself because then people will say that I killed myself so as to harm the party. But if I die, as it were, from an illness, then what will you lose by it? (Laughter). Voices: Blackmailer! Voroshilov: You scoundrel! Keep your trap shut! How vile! How dare you speak like that! Bukharin: But you must understand – it’s very hard for me to go on living. Stalin: And it’s easy for us?! Voroshilov: Did you hear that: ‘I won’t shoot myself, but I will die’?! Bukharin: It’s easy for you to talk about me. What will you lose, after all? Look, if I am a saboteur, a son of a bitch, then why spare me? I make no claims to anything. I am just describing what’s on my mind, what I am going through. If this in any way entails any political damage, however minute, then, no question about it, I’ll do whatever you say. (Laughter.) Why are you laughing? There is absolutely nothing funny about any of this …” (Cited in Slavoj Žižek, Did Somebody Say Totalitarianism?: Five Interventions in the (Mis)Use Of A Notion. New York and London: Verso, 2001: 102/103.)


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“The libidinal expectations do not invest a pregiven surface; they extend a libidinal surface. This surface is not the surface of a depth, the contour enclosing an interior. The excitations do not function as signals, as sensations. Their free mobility is horizontal and continually annexes whatever is tangent to the libidinal body. On this surface exterior and interior are continuous; its spatiality that of a Moebius strip. The excitations extend a continuity of convexities and concavities, probing fingers, facial contours, and orifices, swelling thighs and mouths, everywhere glands surfacing, and what was protuberance and tumescence on the last contact can no be fold, cavity, squeezed breasts, soles of feet forming still another mouth. Feeling one’s way across the outer face of this Moebius strip one finds oneself on the inner surface – all surface still and not inwardness.” (Alphonso Lingis, quoted in Grosz, Space, Time, and Perversion, 183.)

“Then the outer door opens, admitting a shimmer of light, and to Melitta’s own surprise her arms become independent, as though detached from her, they rise up to him, they reach out to him, to surprise him, oh yes, to surprise him. Her arms gleam white, dim white in the soft darkness. And that is the last thing Melitta’s eyes see in this night. For then comes the surprise of a first kiss, a first meeting prolonged because the sweetness of meeting becomes greater and greater. And there follows (after a little awkwardness and a little pain, with the gravity of the self-evident) the primordial surprise, the eternal surprise which—even when it does not, as now, occur for the first time, but has become usual and customary—is always irradiated with the shimmer of the first time and must always, invariably, come as a surprise: the sinking, the fitting, of two human bodies into one another.” (Brock, The Guiltless: 177-178.)

“One man eased his cock into my ass. My asshole went from opaque to transparent as he lifted me off the floor and fucked me slowly with authority while another blew me and occasionally took my balls in his mouth while still another tongued my nipples and kissed me and many others touched my body lightly as though they were sensual Greek breezes.” (Dianne Chisholm, Queer Constellations, Subcultural Space in the Wake of the City. Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, 2005: 53.)

“To return to the magnificent language of the first draft of the Arcades project: if the dialectical image is nothing but the way in which the fetish character is perceived in the collective consciousness, then the Saint-Simonian conception of the commodity world might


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well reveal itself as Utopia, but hardly as the reverse – namely as a dialectical image of the nineteenth century as Hell. But it is only the latter which could place the idea of the ‘Golden Age’ in proper perspective […] […] The dialectical image must therefore not be transferred into consciousness as a dream, but rather the dream should be externalized through dialectical interpretation and the immanence of consciousness itself understood as a constellation of reality – the astronomical phase, as it were, Hell wanders through mankind. It seems to me that it is only a map of such a journey through the stars which could provide a perspicuous vision of history as pre-history.” (Letter, Theodor W. Adorno to Walter Benjamin, 2 August 1935 – 4 August 1935, cited in Henri Lonitz (ed.), Nicholas Walker (trans.), Theodor W. Adorno and Walter Benjamin: The Complete Correspondence, 1928-1940. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1999: 105-106.)

“As I have said, Freud was able to interpret dreams I was then having only incompletely or not at all. They were dreams with collective contents, containing a great deal of symbolic material. One in particular was important to me, for it led me for the first time to the concept of the “collective unconscious”… This was the dream. I was in a house I did not know. It was “my house.” I found myself in the upper story, where there was a kind of salon furnished with fine old pieces in rococo style. On the walls hung a number of precious old paintings. I wondered that this should be my house, and thought, “Not bad.” But then it occurred to me that I did not know what the lower floor looked like. Descending the stairs, I reached the ground floor. There everything was much older, and I realized that this part of the house must date from about the fifteenth or sixteenth century. The furnishings were medieval, the floors were of red brick. Everywhere it was rather dark. I went from one room to another, thinking, “Now I really must explore the whole house.” I came upon a stone stairway that led down into the cellar. Descending again, I found myself in a beautifully vaulted room which looked exceedingly ancient. Examining the walls, I discovered a ring. When I pulled it, the stone slab lifted, and again I saw a stairway of narrow stone steps leading down into the depths. These, too, I descended, and entered a low cave cut into the rock. Thick dust lay on the floor, and in the dust were scattered bones and broken pottery, like remains of a primitive culture. I discovered two human skulls, obviously very old and half disintegrated. Then I awoke.” (Garber, Sex and Real Estate: 101-102.)

“No real and complete memory ever appears in our dreams as it appears in our waking state. Our dreams are composed of fragments of memory too mutilated and mixed up with others to allow us to recognize them. This is hardly an astonishing fact, any more than that in our dreams we do not find true sensations such as those which we experience when we are not asleep. Such


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sensations demand a certain degree of reflexive attention that is in tune with the order of natural relations that we and others experience. Likewise, if the series of images in our dreams does not contain true memories, this is because, in order to remember, one must be capable of reasoning and comparing and of feeling in contact with a human society that can guarantee the integrity of our memory. All these are conditions that are obviously not fulfilled when we dream…” (Maurice Halbwachs (Lewis A. Coser, trans.), On Collective Memory. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1992: 41.)

“And, upon close questioning, the storyteller having said that, provided the wound is dressed at once, such a mutilation has no undesirable aftereffects, Durcet straightway cuts the end off one of Adelaide’s fingers, for his lewd jesting and teasing have been increasingly directed against her. His practical joke fetches a discharge from him, his flow of fuck is accompanied by unheard-of transports.” (The Marquis de Sade (Compiled and Translated by Austryn Wainhouse & Richard Seaver), The 120 Days of Sodom and other writings. New York: Grove Press, 1965: 617.)

“The radical humanist is the particular friend of officials. The so-called “left” humanist’s main worry is keeping human values; he belongs to no party because he does not want to betray the human, but his sympathies go towards the humble. He is generally a widower with a fine eye always clouded with tears: he weeps at anniversaries. He also loves cats, dogs, and all the higher mammals. The Communist writer has been loving men since the second Five Year Plan; he punishes because he loves. Modest as all strong men, he knows how to hide his feelings, but he also knows by a look, an inflection of his voice, how to recognize, behind his rough and read justicial utterances, his passion for his brethren. The Catholic humanist, the late-comer, the Benjamin, speaks of men with a marvelous air. What a beautiful fairy tale, says he, is the humble life of the London dockhand, the girl in the shoe factory! He has chosen the humanism of the angels; he writes, for their edification, long, sad and beautiful novels which frequently win the Prix Femina.” (Sartre, Nausea: 116-117.)

“I now saw everything clear and sharp again: there was the fountain, there the path lined with boxwoods, there the houses, toward which I slowly trudged. Suddenly, once again, behind the silver embroidery of the green, moonlit wall: the white figure, the beautiful stone woman whom I worshiped, whom I feared, whom I was fleeing. A few short leaps and I was in the house, catching my breath and pondering.


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Just what was I really now: a small dilettante or a big fool? A sultry morning: the air was dead, very spicy, agitating. I was sitting in my honeysuckle gazebo and reading the Odyssey, the part about the attractive sorceress who turned her worshippers into beasts. A delicious picture of ancient love.” (Leopold Von Sacher-Masoch (Joachim Neugroschel, Translator), Venus in Furs. London: Penguin Books, 2000: 16.)

“Sometimes one meets a woman who is a beast turning human. Such a person’s every movement will reduce to an image of a forgotten experience…as insupportable a joy as would be the vision of an eland coming down an aisle of trees, … a hoof raised in the economy of fear, stepping in the trepidation of flesh that will become myth….Such a woman is the infected carrier of the past; before her the structure of our head and jaws ache—we feel that we could eat her, she who is eaten death returning.” (Djuna Barnes, Nightwood, quoted in Michaela, M. Grobbel, Enacting Past and Present: The Memory Theaters of Djuna Barnes, Ingeborg Bachmann, & Marguerite Duras. Lexington Books, 2003: 33.)

“Morally the Baron Guy is not so easily described. He hated monks—but that is neither here nor there—and adored children; which is proof of a happily constituted disposition. But the baron had seen so much of men and things that it is not to be wondered at that there existed in his mind a shade of skepticism, if such a term can be applied to désenchantment of a noble at the end of the twelfth century. The baron had, we say, acquired a marked influence over the mind of his nephew; but to Anseric’s two children their great-uncle was as indulgent as possible. He was no less complaisant to his niece; she alone could succeed in lighting up that stern visage with a ray of cheerfulness.” (Viollet-Le-Duc, Annals of a Fortress: 160.)

“Three enormous plants in Japan produced an estimated one billion Hiropon pills between 1938 and 1945. According to a 2005 article in the German online news source Spiegel, the German pharmaceutical companies Temmler and Knoll in only four months, between April and July 1940, manufactured thirty-five million methamphetamine tablets, all of which were shipped to the Nazi army and air corps.” (Reding, Methland: 45)


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“The kind of Russian family to which I belonged—a kind now extinct—had, among other virtues, a traditional leaning toward the comfortable products of Anglo-Saxon civilization. Pear’s Soap, tar-black when dry, topaz-like when held to the light between wet fingers, took care of one’s morning bath. Pleasant was the decreasing weight of the English collapsible tub when it was made to protrude a rubber underlip and disgorge its frothy contents into the slop pail. “We could not improve the cream, so we improved the tube,” said the English toothpaste.” (Nabokov, Speak, Memory: 79.)

“The dead were engulfing the city, their bodies hacked and dismembered by the crazed living. ‘This is what the end of winter brought us,’ Viktor Kozlov said. ‘Decomposing bodies lay in the street. Severed legs were found with all the meat cut off them. Bits of human bodies were uncovered in bins; the corpses of women with their breasts cut off were dragged up from basements. The dead met the half-dead, for some people were injuring themselves in their desperation for food, even cutting off and eating their own buttocks.’ It seemed as if Leningrad’s last hellish moments were at hand. Seven year-old Natalia Stroganova remembered taking a walk with her father. Corpses were being dragged out of buildings, and ahead of them was a big sledge, piled high with bodies, loosely tied with a rope. Heads, arms and legs dangled from its sides. ‘You needed to see this,’ her father said starkly.” (Jones, Leningrad: 242-243.)

“At first hunger is a spur, making legs grow long and forcing nose to the ground. Then it becomes a whip, lashing out at sensitive ears with sounds, striking through a deep sleep. It releases scents that soon are lost. It gnaws and torments from deep inside an aching cavity. The body, with matted fur, legs that dash, claws that tear and scrape, is merely the shape hunger assumes. There is nothing else inside. Only hunger.” (Ekman, The Dog: 34.)

“[…] Mom, did you ever feel like eating us?” “No honey,” she answered, “It never crossed my mind.” Everyone passed their plates to Camille, who served them dinner. Warren looked at the night’s offering, identifiable from past incarnations as Polynesian pork: chunks of meat and pineapple swimming in a brownish goop, topped with Chinese noodles, steaming next to a bowl


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if they went truly broke. He guzzled the water in front of him. “I wonder if for once we could have a normal dinner conversation? One that doesn’t involve cannibalism?” (Eric Puchner, Model Home: a Novel. New York, NY: Scribner, 2010: 103.)

“Ahead of us were the “gully of death,” the town of Prochorowka, and the Psell River. None of us would forget that assault. The “gully of death,” so named by us because of the heavy losses, was to become everyone’s terrible memory. The crew of Untersharführer Prenzl fell victim to a direct hit outside of its Panzer. We had barely crossed the Psell River and conquered its steep banks, barely taken position again above the gully, when the counterattacks by the Soviets began. They came on in battalion and regiment strength. They came with whole brigades and divisions. They moved their guns into battery strength in front of the bridgehead and sent salvo after salvo into the riverbank and occupied the high ground. Tanks charged our lines in numbers that we had not experienced in such a small area during the Eastern Campaign. Prochorowka was not only a bastion at the front north of Bjelgorod, not only the steely tip that broke the floods of the charging Soviet tanks. Prochorowka became the heroes’ grave for many brave men; it became a symbol of defense to the last.” (Fey, Armor Battles of the Waffen-SS: 29.)

“I tightened my grip on the trusty rifle and moved it slightly in the direction of the tree. Whoever it was still could not see me because I was in a great spot, well hidden. I kept perfectly still, that’s goddamned motionless, like a marble statue. I checked with Mikey, who also had not moved. Then I checked the tree again, and this time that turban was around it. A hook-nosed Taliban warrior was peering straight at me through black eyes above a thick black beard. The barrel of his AK-47 was pointed right at my head. Had he seen me? Would he open fire? How did the liberals feel about my position? No time, I guess. I fired once, blew his head off.” (Luttrell, Lone Survivor: 212.)

“The man turns back into woman, woman into man—a slaveless world: there are villains, powers of death. All the living are great, more than human. And because compromise cannot take place on their boundless territories, and because only excessively does one venture where power and its snares can never be calmly inscribed. Through the lives profusing there, an


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endless, tragic struggle against false ideas, codes, “values,” mastery’s ignoble and murderous stupidity.” (Cixous and Clément, The Newly Born Woman: 98-99.)

“A system far from equilibrium may be described as organized not because it realizes a plan alien to elementary activities, or transcending them, but, on the contrary, because the amplification of the microscopic fluctuation occurring is the “right moment” resulted in favoring one reaction path over a number of other equally possible paths. Under certain circumstances, therefore, the role played by individual behavior can be decisive. More generally, the “overall” behavior cannot in general be taken as dominating in any way the elementary processes constituting it. Self-organization processes in far-from-equilibrium conditions correspond to a delicate interplay between chance and necessity, between fluctuations and deterministic laws. We expect that near a bifurcation, fluctuations or random elements would play an important role, while between bifurcations the deterministic aspects would become dominant.” (Ilya Prigogine and Isabelle Stengers, Order and Chaos: Man’s New Dialogue with Nature, cited in Elizabeth Deeds Ermath, Sequel to History: Postmodernism and the Crisis of Representational Time. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1992: 64.)

“Slowly but surely the mass of bodies was yielding…soon it would be forced out into the drawing-room like the cork out of a bottle of champagne. When they could hold it no longer the Collector shouted the order to retire to the next door; that which led from the drawing-room to the hall and where, several weeks earlier, the Collector had been lurking as he tried to make up his mind to attend the meeting of the Krishnapur Poetry Society. Behind that door would be yet another stack of loaded firearms ready to deal with the next assault. All this time Mr. Rayne on one side of the staircase and Mr. Worseley on the other, each with half a dozen men, should have been fighting their way back to converge with his own party in the hall. For a few moments, to give Hookum Singh time to get to the hall and ring the bell for the last time, the Collector held the toppling bodies by himself, then he sped across the drawing-room after the Sikhs, his boots crunching broken glass from the cases of stuffed animals; the Sikhs in bare feet, however, and did not crunch it so loudly. Together they barely had time to take up a position at the far door, seize a loaded gun, drop to one knee, and aim as, with a final heave, the bulging mass of bodies exploded into the room, followed by the living. ‘Fire!’ shouted the Collector, and another morbid volley took effect. ‘Front rank, bayonets. Second rank, change guns, prepare to fire!’” (J. G. Farrrell, The Siege of Krishnapur. New York, NY: NYRB Classics, 2004: 323-324.)


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“Halt! I protest!” (Malcolm Lowry, quoted in Kathleen Scherf, The Collected Poetry of Malcolm Lowry. Vancouver, BC: UBC Press, 1992: 8.)

“The rules of chess do not describe what always actually does occur. Beginners may well fail to observe them correctly; and if unscrupulous players do not try to violate them more often, for instance by trying to advance a pawn three squares on one move or by moving a rook diagonally, this is only because the rules are relatively simple and failure to conform to them is highly visible. At a certain point if too many rules seem to be violated, we might wish to say that the two people sitting at the board are not “really” playing chess, but doing something else. This, however, is a separate issue, and it would seem a hysterical reaction to insist that two people are not playing chess on the mere grounds that one of them once made an irregular move. It is not so much that the rules of chess are in fact instantiated in most actual games of chess (although they usually are), as that, as we are inclined to put it, the “should” or “ought to be” followed. The players themselves must activate and instantiate the rules, although they could in principle do something completely different, such as play go, jointly admire the cat, discuss a recent book, or what have you.” (Geuss, Politics and the Imagination: 47-48.)

“For the Scots, border consciousness is a bardic act. That invisible, near-mythical border is a primeval literary marker, and the prototype for the border that obsesses me. I’m not Scottish and have never set foot in Scotland, but at one time in my life the thought of such a border spoke to me, as it would to many Canadians. Anything to do with borders speak to me personally. Crossing the border is like ripping the continent, an act of defiance, tearing its invisible casing. Borders are zones of grace, fifty miles wide on either side, where dualities and spirit are tolerated and commonplace. Around 1912 or so my father first pierced the American border, landing in Maine among his own relatives.” (Blaise, I Had A Father: 59-60.)

“He waded out across the drifted fields. The snow lay deep and gray. Already there was a fresh fall of ash on it. He struggled on a few more feet and then turned and looked back.” (Cormac McCarthy, The Road. New York: Vintage Books, 2006: 99.)


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“[…] with Daisy’s bicycle wobbling in the indelible fog. She, too, had “known the moves”, and had loved the en passant trick as one loves a new toy, but it cropped up so seldom, though he tried to prepare those magic positions where the ghost of a pawn can be captured on the square it has crossed. Fever, however, turns games of skill into the stuff of nightmares. After a few minutes of play Flora grew tired of it, put a rook in her mouth, ejected it.” (Nabokov, The Original of Laura: 69.)

“Raising a gem-like flame within my eyes. From all the snares and deadly sins they save Me, and they lead my steps in Beauty’s way; They are my servants, yet I am their slave; Fair eyes you glimmer with secret rays” (Randomly torn text fragment from Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil.)

“Our central idea is that of the construction of situations, that is to say, the concrete construction of momentary ambiances of life and their transformation into a superior passional quality…. The construction of situations begins on the ruins of the modern spectacle – nonintervention – linked to the alienation of the old world. Conversely, the most pertinent revolutionary experiments in culture have sought to break the spectator’s psychological identifications with the hero so as to draw him into activity by provoking his capacities to revolutionize his own life.” (Guy Debord, “Report on the Construction of Situations and on the International Situationist Tendency’s Conditions and Organization of Action,” quoted in Gardiner, Critiques of Everyday Life: 105.)

“NEVER WORK! REGARD YOUR DESIRES AS REALITY! BOREDOM IS COUNTERREVOLUTIONARY!


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THE UNIONS ARE BROTHELS! CONSUME MORE, THEN YOU LIVE LESS! LIVE WITHOUT KILLING TIME, ENJOY WITHOUT INHIBITIONS!” (Situationist International quotations that appeared on the walls of the University of Nanterre in the May 1968 Paris uprisings quoted Raunig, Art and Revolution: 182.)

“[I] have to cope with an additional burden – the recollection I have of him, reliving his childhood with the help of those very books. I see again my schoolroom […], the blue roses of the wallpaper, the open window. Its reflection fills the oval mirror above the leathern couch where my uncle sits, gloating over a tattered book. A sense of security, of well-being, of summer warmth pervades my memory. That robust reality makes a ghost of the present. The mirror brims with brightness; a bumblebee has entered the room and bumps against the ceiling. Everything is as it should be, nothing will ever change, nobody will ever die.” (Nabokov, Speak, Memory: 76-77.)

“Even the theme of the mirror: “She undressed brutally, ripping out thin laces of her corset so violently that they would whistle around her hips… Then with one movement she would let all her clothes fall at once [published text] around her heels like a mass of clouds, and step out of it. Then she would stretch her arms [unpublished], and pale and serious, without a word, she would throw herself against his chest with a long shudder [text].” We can see easily why Flaubert deleted the glance in the mirror. Emma is androgynous; she melts into the arms of Rodolphe—a “true” male, empty like Genet’s pimps; it is the moment of the mirror: quite naked, she contemplates her desired body and tries to see it with the eyes of the hunter whose prey she is. At this moment, Flaubert slips into her to admire himself and to dream of future abandon. When she is about to make love to Léon, she is the hunter. And this is not the moment, as when she undresses brutally like a man, to go searching in the mirror for the object of lust she was for her first lover. Even if that smile were triumphant—but we are told it is intoxicated—it would hardly suit the carnivore discovering its prey and about to leap upon it.” (Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 58.)


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“If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging symbol. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all memories and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to move mountains, but do not love, I am nothing… Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know only in part, and we prophesy only in part; but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end…For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in a part; then I will fully, even as I have been fully known.” (Žižek, The Puppet and the Dwarf, in Dean, Žižek Politics: 165.)

“Now I felt I had been precipitated unceremoniously into the very heart of an alien cosmogony. Beneath the earth, sweating as I was in its humid viscera. I felt the dull pressure of the desert, of the mountains beyond the desert, of the vast prairies, the grazing cattle, the corn; I felt upon me the whole heaviness of that entire continent with its cities and its coinage, its mines, its foundries, its wars and its mythologies imposing itself in all its immensity, like the nightmare, upon my breast. I gasped. I choked. My fear took on a new quality; not only fear for my own safety, now, but the dread of the immensity of the world about me.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 52.)

“THESIS A Historicism contents itself with establishing a causal nexus among various moments in history. But no state of affairs having causal significance is for that very reason historical. It became historical posthumously, as it were, though events that may be separated from it by thousands of years. The historian who proceeds from this consideration ceases to tell the sequence of events like the beads of a rosary. He grasps the constellation into which his own era has entered, along with a very specific earlier one. Thus, he establishes a conception of the present as now-time shot through with splinters of messianic time.” (Benjamin, ‘Theses on the Concept of History,’ quoted in Löwy, Fire Alarm: 100-101.)


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“He caught sight of the horse, tethered near him. Only now he saw it more vividly and as a whole, electrified; the corded mouth, the shaved wooden pommel behind which tape was hanging, the saddle-bags, the mats under the belt, the sore and the glossy shine on the hipbone, the number seven branded on the rump, the stud behind the saddlebuckle glittering like a Topaz in the light from the cantina. He staggered towards it. ‘I blow you wide open from your knees up, you Jew chingao,’ warned the Chief of Rostrums, grasping him by the collar, and the Chief of Gardens, standing by, nodded gravely. The Consul, shaking himself free, tore frantically at the horse’s bridle. The Chief of Rostrums stepped aside, hand on his holster. He drew his pistol. With his free hand he waved away some tentative onlookers. ‘I blow you open from your knees up, you cabrón,’ he said, ‘you pelado.’” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 373.)

“The horse sees he is repeating All known cultures… The shape of his ground seems to have been A constant for all dead horses…” (Louise Zhukofsky, “A”-12, quoted in Mark Scroggins, The Poem of a Life: A Biography of Louis Zukofsky. Shoemaker Hoard, 2007: 197.)

“[…] the precondition for the “vollendete Negativität,” or perfected negativity, to delineate, explosively, the “Spiegelschriftihres Gegenteils,” the mirror-writing of its opposite, can never be fully present; just as negativity can never be fully perfected or completed [“vollendet”], it can never be “ganz ins Auge gefaßt,” fully captured or completely faced. Thus, while Adorno’s metaphors give the impression of supplying the figures of a possible redemption, even the redemption that is lodged in negativity, his diction also withdraws that promise by retreating from a full actualization of the goal towards which it strives. It is no accident that this retreat is linked performatively to language, since it is the allegorical or figurative domain of language itself htat draws the contours of redemption while at the same time undoing its triumphant endorsement. It is for this reason, too, that the metaphor of “Spiegelschrift,” mirror-writing—in the standard English translation […] is significant here.” (Richter, Language Without Soil: 141.)

“The mirroring body defines itself in acts of consumption. The body is both instrument and object of consuming: the body is used to consume, and consumption enhances the body: feeing


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it, clothing it, grooming it, and, in the consumption of medical services, curing it. This body-self is called mirroring because consumption attempts to recreate the body in the image of other bodies: more stylish and healthier bodies. The primary sense is visual: the body sees an image, idealizes it, and seeks to become the image of that image. The mirroring body thus attempts to make itself exactly what the popular phrase calls “the picture of health.”” (Arthur W. Frank, The Wounded Storyteller: Body, Illness, and Ethics. Chicago & London: The University of Chicago Press, 1995: 43-44.)

“ … in the marginal area, the gap, were the peculiar tensions that birthed the dream.” (Norman Mailer, The Naked and the Dead, cited in Carter, 84.)

“The multiple and heterogenous border of this abyssal rupture has a history. Both macroscopic and microscopic and far from being closed, that history is now passing through the most unusual phase in which we now find ourselves, and for which we have no scale. Indeed, one can speak here of history, of a historic moment or phase, only from one of the supposed edges of the said rupture, the edge of an anthropo-centric subjectivity that is recounted or allows a history to be recounted about it, autobiographically, the history of its life, and that it therefore calls History.” (Jacques Derrida (David Wills, Translator), The Animal That Therefore I Am. New York, NY: Fordham University Press, 2008: 31.

“Jacques Derrida has been lurking in this reflection for quite some time, and it is time to invite him in directly. Not least, Derrida elogquently and relentlessly reminds us that responsibility is never calculable. There is no formula for response; precisely, to respond is not merely to react with a fixed calculus proper to machines, logic, and—most Western philosophy has insisted—animals. In the lineage of Western philosophers with and against whom Derrida struggled all his life, only the Human can respond; animals react. The Animal is forever positioned on the other side of an unbridgeable gap, a gap that reassures the Human of his excellence by the very ontological impoverishment of a lifeworld that cannot be its own end or know its own condition. Following Lévinas on the subjectivity of the hostage, Derrida remembers that in this gap lies the logic of sacrifice, within which there is no responsibility toward the living world other than the human.” (Donna Harraway, When Species Meet. Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, 2008: 75-76.)


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“Now Pin is outside, in the alley. Dusk is falling and lights are going on in the windows. Far away, down by the river frogs are beginning to croak; at this time of the year bys spend their evenings hanging over pools, trying to catch them. When caught, the frogs feel slimy and slithery in their hands, smooth and naked as women. A little boy in glasses and long trousers passes by: Battistino. ‘Battistino, d’you know what a Gap is? Battistino blinks with curiosity. ‘No, tell me. What is it?’ Pin breaks out in a peal of laughter. ‘Just go and ask your mother what a Gap is. Say to her, “Mummy, will you give me a Gap?” Say that. She’ll explain, you’ll see!” Battistino slopes off, looking humiliated. Pin wanders up the alley, which is almost dark now, and feels alone and lost amid all this talk of bloodshed and naked bodies which makes up men’s lives.” (Italo Calvino (Translated by Archibald Colquhon), The Path to the Spider’s Nests. New York: The Ecco Press, 2000: 41-42.)

“We live in societies in which we are increasingly less able to refer to a single or primary level as the one on which the basic identity of the social agents is constituted. This means, on the one hand, that social agents are becoming more and more “multiple selves,” with loosely integrated and unstable identities; and on the other, that there is a proliferation of the points in society from which decisions affecting their lives will be taken. As a result, the need “to fill gaps” is no longer a “supplement” to be added to a basic area of constitution of the identity of the agent but instead becomes a primary terrain.” (Ernesto Laclau, “Power and Representation,” in Mark Poster (Editor), Politics, Theory, and Contemporary Culture. New York: Columbia University Press, 1993: 291.)

“And so each day Culminates in merriment as well as deep shock like an electric one. As the wrecking ball bursts through the wall with the book shelves Scattered the works of famous authors as well as those Of more obscure ones, and books with no authors, letting in Space, and an extraneous babble from the street Confirming the new value the hollow core has again, the light From the lighthouse that protects as it pushes us away.”


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(John Ashberry, “Down by the Station, Early in the Morning,” quoted in Giorgio Agamben (Translated by William Watkin), The Literary Agamben: Adventures in Logopoiesis. London and New York: The Continuum International Publishing Group, 2010: 177.)

“i, first person, crossing over a (gap) i string out bridges of words to seek you there, perfectly composed, between us the rushing a-byss, a, not, undone, undoing all my bridges in itself a blue so clear fade into a, note, a single letter a” (Daphne Marlatt, here & there, n.p., cited in Susan Rudy, ‘& how else can I be here?’: Reading Cross-Wise through Some Poetries of Canada’, in Romana Huk (ed.), Assembling Alternatives: Reading Postmodern Poetries Transnationally. Middleton, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press, 2003: 290.)

“What is there is no pure experience of the gap, what if every version of the gap is already viewed from the standpoint of a certain political engagement? So there is a concservative-tragic celebration of the gap (we are all ultimately doomed to fail, heroic acts can only temporarily postpone the final fall, themost we can do is fall in an authentic way), a liberal pragmatic assertion of the gap (democracy admits the imperfection of our societies, there is no final solution to our woes, just a more or less successful pragmatic tinkering), and the radical-leftist externalization of struggle (Mao: “class struggle will go on forever”). Each of these positions can be formulated in terms of its own specific denial of the antagonism: the conservative organic harmony, the liberal balancing of conflicts through the translation of antagonism into agonistic competition, the leftist post-revolutionary paradise-to-come.” (Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: 963-964.)

“[the boat has arrived at the Do Lung bridge, which is a combat zone] Chef: Lance! Hey, Lance! What do you think? Lance: It's beautiful! Chef: What's the matter with you? You're acting kinda weird! Lance: Hey, you know that last tab of acid I was saving? I dropped it. Chef: You dropped acid?... Far out!” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

“Thought waits to be woken one day by the memory of what has been missed, and to be transformed into teaching.”


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(Adorno, “The Gap”, Minima Moralia: 81.)

“It’s the gap. This is it.” (McCarthy, The Road: 33.)


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(David Brian Howard, “Gate,” 1980/1.)

‫ו‬ Chapter Three: Frozen Glances in a Mirror

“The dialogue is dark and clear When a heart becomes its mirror! Tête-à-tête somber et limpid Qu’un Coeur devenu son miroir!” (Charles Baudelaire, “L’Irrémédiable,” quoted in Georges Poulet (Translated by Françoise Meltzer), Exploding Poetry: Baudelaire/Rimbaud. Chicago & London: The University of Chicago Press, 1980: 21.)

“Achilles baneful wrath – resound, O goddess – that impos’d Infinite sorrows on the Greeks, and many brave souls loos’d From breasts heroic; sent them far, to that invisible cave. That no light comforts; and their limbs to dogs and vultures gave.” (Homer (translated by George Chapman), The Iliad, Ware, Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions, 2003: 1-4.)

“The creature’s face seemed to be protruded, because of its bent carriage. A forlorn, jailbird’s face with a nobby forehead running back into a bald scalp, a crooked nose and battered-looking cheekbones above which the eyes were fierce and watchful. The cheeks were seamed, the mouth had a drawn-in look … Except for his hands and a circle of his face, his body was gray all over with ancient, ingrained dirt. Here and there under the dirt there were the red scars of wounds, and near the ankle the varicose ulcer was an inflamed mass with flakes of skin peeling off it. But the truly frightening things was the emaciation of his body. The barrel of the ribs was as narrow as that of a skeleton; the legs had shunk so that the knees were thicker than the thighs … the thin shoulders were hunched forward so as to make a cavity of the chest, the scraggy neck seemed to be bending double under the weight of the skull. At a guess he would have said that it was the body of a man of sixty, suffering from some malignant disease.”


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(George Orwell, 1984, quoted in Peters, The Mutilating God: 143.)

“What poet ever produced such a paradoxical scenario [paradoxon mython] on the stage? You must have thought you were sitting in a theater filled with a thousand emotions, all at the same time: tears, joy, amazement, pity, disbelief, fervent prayer! (Chaereas and Callirhoe 5.8.2)” (Carson, Eros: 84.)

“Hardly had they left the house than they entered into a wide and airy, crystal-crowned passageway, onto which nearly all the neighboring houses seemed to issue; just beyond this, however; and divided from it only by a perfectly transparent partition that appeared to be formed of thin sheets of ice, lay the luminous waters.” (Gerstäcker, Die versunkene Stadt, quoted in Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 540.)

“In obvious contrast with the materiality of the body of the commodity, not a single atom of matter penetrates to its value…Metamorphosed into identical sublimates, samples of the same undifferentiated labor, all objects manifest but one thing, which is that a certain force of labor has been expended in producing them. Insofar as they are crystals of this common social substance, they are reputed to be value.” (Karl Marx, Das Kapital, Volume One, quoted in Agamben, Stanzas: 37.)

“Beulah is a profane place. It is a crucible.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 49.)

“The crossing of borders, always announces itself according to the movement of a certain step [pas] – and of the step that crosses a line. An indivisible line. And one always assumes the institution of such an indivisibility. Customs, police, visa or passport, passenger identification -all of that is established upon the institution of the indivisible, the institution therefore of the step that is related to it, whether the step crosses it or not. Consequently, where the figure of the step is refused to intuition, where the identity or indivisibility of a line (finis or peras) is compromised, the identity of oneself and therefore the possible identification of an intangible


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edge – the crossing of the line – becomes a problem. There is a problem as soon as the edge-line is threatened. And it is threatened from its first tracing. This tracing can only institute the line by dividing it intrinsically into two sides. There is a problem as soon as this intrinsic division divides the relation to itself of the border and therefore divides identity or the being-one-self (ipséité] of anything whatsoever.” (Derrida and Malabou, Counterpath: 165-166.)

“The memorable tropes that have the most success (Beifall) occur as mere random improvisation (Einfall) at the moment when the author has completely relinquished any control over his meaning and has relapsed (Zurückfall) into the extreme formalization, the mechanical predictability of grammatical declensions (Fälle). But Fälle, of course, also means in German “trap,” the trap which is the ultimate textual model of all texts, the trap of an aesthetic education which inevitably confuses dismemberment of language by the power of the letter with the gracefulness of dance. This dance, regardless of whether it occurs as mirror, as imitation, as history, as the fencing match of interpretation, or as the anamorphic transformation of tropes, is the ultimate trap, as unavoidable as it is deadly.” (Hicks, Border Writing: 5.)

“The Grand Hotel Crystal Cage And it was at this time that he was commissioned to design a grand hotel, which he chose to call, or so they interpreted his grumbling response, the Grand Hotel Crystal Cage. By now he had developed glass so transparent that, peering through it (to do this, one had to be told where it was, invisible as it was to the naked eye), one saw not the objects, people, streets, or landscapes on the other side, but their inner truth and being. As his mirrors had enlarged upon what they had reflected, this new ultra transparent crystal absorbed what lay beyond it and distilled it to its essence. But the more the architect refined the glass, the less he saw on the other side, and he knew then that when he had perfected it, he would be staring out upon the void. He had set out upon a sacred quest for permanence and perfection and alas, he had found it, in the only form, architecturally speaking, in which it could possibly exist. And so, having escaped the prison of the all, he had trapped himself again, this time with the contrary, and this time there would be no escape. Perhaps that was what he was muttering about when his municipal patrons heard the words “cage” and “crystal.” (Coover, The Grand Hotels: 38-39.)


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“The idea of the hotel is the perfect opposite of the home,” declares anthropologist Mary Douglas, “not only because it uses market principles for its transactions, but because it allows its clients to buy privacy as a right of exclusion.” Douglas regards the idea of the hotel as “the standard ‘Other’” to the home. A hotel is a place “where every comfort has to be paid for, the mercenary, cold, luxurious counterpart against which the home is being measured.” She cites the cry of the typical exasperated parent: “March in and out, without so much as by your leave; do they think this is a hotel?”” (Garber, Sex and Real Estate: 141.)

“[Arnold] Gehlen announced the end of the epoch of secular ideologies which had begun in 1789. The ‘revolutionary systems of ideas since 1789 engaged the individual in a direct capacity for action ... But that corresponded to a more primitive consciousness of the problems of society … today it had become impossible to draw up a programme which could decisively change the relationship between economic and political life. In the powerful, balanced machine … such a programme would find no junctures at which it might intervene.” For now a process of cultural crystallization has taken place. Our culture has reached a point where the basic stock of possibilities inherent in it has been fully articulated; the counter-possibilities and antitheses have been discovered and either accommodated or eliminated. No chance remains of opposing any clearly discernible global alternative to the established system. We have arrived in post-history.” (Paul Connerton, The Tragedy of the Enlightenment: An Essay on the Frankfurt School. Cambridge and New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1989: 122.)

“A hunchbacked dwarf was hopping about like a toad, from one crossroad to another—the place was full of crossroads. Suddenly stars appeared, and they were gems and diamonds in the black sky. And the dwarf hunchback made leaps as high as he could go to reach the diamonds his greed was awakening. Crystals! Crystals! he cried in thoughts that were tripping about like the leaps themselves.” (Lispector, “Where you were at Night,” in Lipspector, Soulstorm: 117.)

“These forms are related to various aspects of the privatization of public space, from the allencompassing commercialization of urban shopping zones to the establishment of gated communities. The increasing privatization of previously “public” (at least in the sense of nonprivate) spaces and their permanent economization lead to a radical segmentation of territories


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by private and state organs. The rigidity of these segmented spaces and thus also of the social conditions within these spaces corresponds to the crystallization of clearly delimited special interest groups of consumers, who claim different locations of consumption and selfrepresentation, which in turn engenders new internal borders and exclusions.” (Raunig, Art and Revolution: 246.)

“With the final integration of the instinctive and the spiritual by manes of these human techniques, the edifice of the technical society will be completed. It will not be a universal concentration camp, for it will be quilty of no atrocity. It will not seem insane, for everything will be ordered, and the stains of human passion will be lost amid the chromium gleam. Our deepest instincts and our most secret passions will be analyzed, published, and exploited. We shall be rewarded with everything our hearts ever desired. And the supreme luxury of our society of technical necessity will be to grant the bonus of useless revolt and of an acquiescent smile.” (Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society. New York: Vintage Books, 1964: 426-427.)

“Short Shadows. Toward noon, shadows are no more than the sharp, black edges at the feet of things, preparing to retreat silently, unnoticed, into their burrow, into their secret. Then, in its compressed, cowering fullness, comes the hour of Zarathustra—the thinker in “the noon of life,” in “the summer garden.” For it is knowledge that gives the objects their sharpest outline, like the sun at its zenith.” (Benjamin, “Short Shadows III,” Selected Writings: Volume 2, 1927-1934: 702.)

“…it now lately sometimes seemed like a kind of black miracle to me that people could actually care deeply about a subject or pursuit, and could go on caring this way for years on end. Could dedicate their entire lives to it. It seemed admirable and at the same time pathetic. God or Satan, politics or grammar, topology or philately – the object seemed incidental to this will to give oneself away, utterly. To games or needles, to some other person. Something pathetic about it. A flight – from in the form of a plunging – into. Flight from exactly what? These rooms blandly filled with excrement and meat? To what purpose? (David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest, cited in Timothy Jacobs, “The Brothers Incandenza: Translating Ideology in Fyodor Dostoevsky’s The Brother’s Karamazov and David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest,” Texas Studies in Literature and Language, Vol. 29, No. 3, Fall 2007: 289.)


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“For the allegorist does not simply empty things of their intrinsic substance and essence; he also invests them with new life and meaning, albeit as part of a masquerade, a spectacle. The world is no longer simply empty of meaning: it is simultaneously, and hence, inauthentically overflowing with meaning.” (Weber, Benjamin’s-abilities: 160.)

“In our highly ideological times, even nostalgia has its politics. The conservatives of the sentiment believe that recovering their own forgotten history is an antidote to shallowness. The ideologues of the future see attachement to the past as the most awful of all monsters, the agent of reaction. It is to be extracted from the human soul with no quarter or self-pity, for it obstructs the inevitable march of events into the next Utopia. Only certain Eastern European writers, forced to march into the future too often, know the regressive dangers of both forgetfulness and clinging to the past. But then, they are among our world’s experts of mourning, having lost not an archaeological but a living memory.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 115-116.)

“The American empire, along with our wanton self-indulgence and gluttonous consumption, has come to an end. We are undergoing a period of profound economic, political, and military decline. We can continue to dance to the tunes of self-delusion, circling the fire as we chant ridiculous mantras about our greatness, virtue, and power, or we can face the painful reality that has engulfed us. We cannot reverse this decline. It will happen no matter what we do. But we can, if we break free from our self-delusion, dismantle our crumbling empire and be national security state with a minimum of damage to ourselves and others. If we refuse to accept our limitations, if we do not face the changes forced upon us, our military, and our government, we will barrel toward internal and external collapse. Our self-delusion constitutes our greatest danger. We will either confront reality or plunge headlong into the minefields that lie before us.” (Chris Hedges, The World As It Is: Dispatches On The Myth Of Human Progress. New York, NY: Nation Books, 2010: 259.)

“And of course their mines, some of which were smarter than others. Most of them could act as an extra remote sensor cluster, if you laid a fiber-optic cable out to them.


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Hitting a mine did not necessarily take you out. One of the nice things about the magnetic bars that we rode on was that if you got a few of them blown away, you weren’t immobilized the way you would be with a conventional tank tread. In fact, you could lose more than half of our bars and still move, although not at top speed.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 64.)

“Photo Journalist: There's mines over there, there's mines over there, and watch out those goddamn monkeys bite, I'll tell ya.” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

“Come Back! All is Forgiven! Like someone performing the giant swing on the horizontal bar, each boy spins for himself the wheel of fortune from which, sooner or later, the momentous lot shall fall. For only that which we knew or practiced at fifteen will one day constitute our attraction. And one thing, therefore, can never be made good: having neglected to run away from one’s parents. From forty-eight hours’ exposure in those years, as if in a caustic solution, the crystal of life’s happiness forms.” (Benjamin, “One-Way Street,” in Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Volume I: 446.)

“Despite the naked swords, the bayonets and muskets, not for a moment could I persuade myself that I or anyone else was in mortal danger…. Bloodthirsty hatreds only came later; they had not had the time to be born; the peculiar spirit of the February Revolution had yet to show itself. Meanwhile, we sought without success to warm ourselves at our father’s passions; we imitated their gestures and their poses as we had seen them in the theatre without being able to imitate their enthusiasm or feel their fury. A tradition of violent actions was being followed by frigid souls without being understood. Although I saw clearly that the denouement of the play would be terrible, I could never take the actors seriously; it all seemed a vile tragedy played by a provincial troupe.” (Alexis de Tocqueville on the Revolution of 1848 from, Recollections, quoted in Shiner, The Secret Mirror: Literary Form and History in Tocqueville’s Recollections. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1995: 55.)


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“Some borders are cages, others are mirrors. Some purely political borders rasp on our consciousness—the various Koreas and Irelands and, until recently, the Germanys and South African “homelands.” They seem to defy the common meaning of border, which is to define differences—these are borders that separate likenesses. Traditional borders, as in Europe, are natural reminders of where ancient armies ran out of steam, where languages and religions thinned out and faltered. Within the shell of a traditional border, it doesn’t matter how small the country is: it defines the world. Other borders are aesthetic or cultural, such as that of Scotland, or the Mason-Dixon line, or dozens of others with poetic and psychological potency—the various Gaeltaecht regions of Ireland, the Breton, Welsh, Basque, Kurdish borders that exist only as maintained, and sometimes bloody, fictions. There are borders made of the thinnest membrane, such as that between Canada and the United States, which is undefended because it is maintained psychologically; the two sides have reached a mental state. Borders are supreme fiction. For the once-colonized, newly liberated, borders are a deformity; they create monsters. They do not define or protect, they do not express a collective will. They exacerbate instability. Borders are asylum walls, they separate natural brothers, they enclose natural enemies.” (Blaise, I Had A Father: 64.)

“You, Rrose Selavy, wander out of reach In the spring caught up in love’s sweat, In the scent of the rose budding on tower walls, In the ferment of waters and earth. Bleeding, a rose in his side, the dancer’s stone body Appears in the theater in the midst of ploughing A mute, blind, and deaf people Will applaud his dance and his spring death. At the wash house, where the water runs, a cloud pretends to be The soap and the storm as it pushes back the moment When the sun will break the bushes into flower.” (Robert Desnos, “Spring,” quoted in Conley, Robert Desnos: 186.)

“She was smiling a lipsticked and public smile, not quite a hooker’s but nowhere near that of any nymph pining away with love either.”


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(Thomas Pynchon, The Crying of Lot 49. New York: Harper Perennial, 1986: 26-27.)

“Kill your father! Sleep with your mother! Burst through all the interdictions!” […] “Reintegrate the primal form!” she urged me. “Reintegrate the primal form!” shrieked Mother. Her flesh seemed to me molten, burning. I caught one glimpse of her gaping vagina as I went down; it looked like the crater of a volcano on the point of eruption. Her head reared up to kiss me and, for a hallucinatory instant, I thought I saw the sun in her mouth, so that I was momentarily blinded and retained no memory of the texture of her tongue, although it seemed to me the size of a sodden bath-towel. (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 64.)

“The derivation of religious needs from the infants helplessness and the longing for the father aroused by it seems to me incontrovertible, especially since the feeling is not simply prolonged from childhood days, but is permanently sustained by fear of the superior power of fate. I cannot think of any need in childhood as strong as the need for a father’s protection. Thus the part played by the oceanic feeling, which might seek something like restoration of limitless narcissism is ousted from a place in the foreground. The origin of the religious attitude can be traced back in clear outlines as far as the feeling of infantile helplessness. There may be something further back behind that, but for the present it is wrapped in obscurity.” (Sigmund Freud, “Civilization and its Discontents,” cited in Flax, Thinking Fragments, 107.)

“It is time for man to make a new appraisal of himself. His failure is abject. His plans for the future are infantile. The varied forms of civilization in this century are smashing each other….If we do not turn upon ourselves the terrible honesty our science has turned upon goods, we are done for. This war, this uprooting – the second – will be only a stumble on the path back to a new start in a new savagery far deeper than that of a thousand years ago.” (Phillip Wylie, Generation of Vipers, cited in Michael Leja, Reframing Abstract Expressionism: Subjectivity and Painting in the 1940s. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1993: 202.)

“Perhaps I bore you,” I said, with my usual tendency towards pessimism.”


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(Calvino, If on a winter’s night a traveler: 197.)

“Fantasy Definition: the forming of mental images, especially wondrous or strange fancies; imaginative conceptualizing. Psychology: an imagined or conjured-up sequence fulfilling a psychological need; daydream. Conservatives have just as many fantasies as liberals – despite the fact that, according to one study, nearly half of conservative Christians feel sexual fantasies are “morally flawed or unacceptable.” -Peter Doskoch, Psychology Today, September/October 1995.” (Natalie Danford cited in Sussman, Dirty Words: 100.)

“[…] why does the eye see a thing more clearly in dreams than in the waking imagination […]” (David Antin, “The Black Plague,” quoted in Rasula, Modernism and Poetic Inspiration: 177.)

“What is the dream? You ask too much of me: It’s a woman who chops a tree. (Max Ernst, “Les Mystéres de la Forét, Minotaure No. 5 (May 1934) cited in Harris, Surrealist Art and Thought in the 1930s, 178.)

“Heidegger was thus right with his thesis that Hegel does not render thematic his basic operation of negativity, but he is, as it were right for the wrong reasons: the core of Hegelian dialectics, inaccessible to Hegel himself, is the repetitive (death) drive which becomes visible after the post-Hegelian break. But why should there not be at the base of dialectics a tension between dialectics and its non-dialectizable core? In this sense, the death drive or the compulsion to repeat is the heart of negativity, Hegel’s non-thematized presupposition— inaccessible not only to him, but, perhaps, to philosophy as such: its outlines were first deployed by a theologian (Kierkegaard) and a (meta-) psychologist (Freud), and a century later a


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philosopher (Deleuze) incorporated Kierkegaard’s and Freud’s lesson. With regard to the precise status of negativity, the situation is thus in a way reversed: it is hegel who offers a series of Vers, of displaced variations of negativity, and it is only in psychoanalysis through Freud and Lacan, that we can formulate the elementary form of negativity.” (Žiźek, Less Than Zero: 492-493.)

“It is in this psychic configuration that Baudelaire’s prose poem narrator manages for one thing to register the split between dandy and prostitute, between buyer and seller that is so fundamental to modern life in market society, and yet occupy a position over and above that split – a position Jacques Attali calls that of the “designer” or “programmer.” The market function of programming is to bestow semiotic value in context of generalized decoding which renders value entirely mobile, and to bend its perpetual definition and redefinition to the service of economic gain. Modernism and advertising have never seemed so close – but as Baudelaire shows, they always have been. Borderline narcissism reflects or supports the programmer’s ability to acknowledge and yet preside over the conflict between buying and selling that characterizes market society. The modernist repudiation of narrative and suppression of history opens a gap that must be acknowledged between what Baudelaire lived and what is registered in his poetry collections. It is thus imperative for us to distinguish between Baudelaire’s own evolution from romantic to revolutionary to modernist, on one hand, and the development of the poetry, on the other.” (Eugene W. Holland, Baudelaire and Schizoanalysis: The Sociopoetics of Modernism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993: 26-27.)

“The specific form of transgression that is the issue here does not oppose one side to the other, does not enter into the dialectical mockery, in which the border is regarded as a towering and yet incomprehensible in-between. It does not shake the stability of foundations on both sides of the border by temporarily negating the border, allowing the other side of the mirror to shine, while the line in between remains invisible and impassable. Because this transgression is neither violence in a divided world, nor does it seek to triumph over the border by extinguishing it, “it takes the immeasurable measure of distance at the heart of the border.” Exactly on and in the border, the immeasurableness of the space is opened up, in which differences moved without necessarily being sublated in a higher identity.” (Raunig, Art and Revolution: 253.)


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“Bob lingers in the passage between wish and ruin, in the phantasmagoria of the sex arcade. Here he can embrace gay self-love, though he looks on distantly, distracted and enchanted, as if tracking the frames of a surreal movie: :a waist arching calls attention to the nipples and sends the smooth ass backward giving access – someone slowly kneels Two mouths, four nipples, four hands, two cocks, two :the shifting buttocks scrotums, two assholes, two hundred and sixteen possi :one excited man excites others to a circle of masturbation – hands and cocks group and regroup like a sudden wind shifting in a garden, or like a story: when a cock comes it withdraws from the plot bilities and then another man joins you – orgy in the : someone is fucking a face he can’t see, slow rhythmical ass that opens up and then clenches, its dreamtime logic has a unity that can’t be dismissed or broken into parts.” (Chisholm, Queer Constellations: Subcultural Space in the Wake of the City: 93)

“In the world’s structure, dream loosens individuality like a bad tooth. This is loosening of the self by intoxication is, at the same time, precisely the fruitful, living experience that allowed these people to step outside the charmed space of intoxication.” (Harder, “Walter Benjamin’s “Dream of Happiness,” quoted in Hanssen, Walter Benjamin and The Arcades Project: 191.)

“At the center of the melancholy dialectic stands the corpse, both in its modern and in its baroque variants. This is apparently the guiding motive for the movement from “sensory makeup” through “passion” to “allegory” and thence ultimately to “melancholy” in Benjamin’s planned treatment of Baudelairean melancholy. “The center of the intersection of the axes for the schematism’s of the first section [“Baudelaire as Allegorist”] will form [bilden] death or the corpse. In the corresponding place in the third part [“The Commodity as Poetic Object”], the commodity will stand as the social reality which underlies the dominion of the death principle in this poetry.” (Max Pensky, Melancholy Dialectics: Walter Benjamin and the Play of Mourning. Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1993: 183.)


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“I am stuck in the middle of the journey a highway without human activity a text without visible structure life on this side of the border on your side … I no longer know who I am but I like it.” (Guillermo Gómez-Pena cited in Soja, Thirdspace: 132.)

“The solution to the problem of identity is, get lost.” (Norman O. Brown cited in Marcuse, Negations: Essays in Critical Theory: 230.)

“But the snow was still falling at that time in massed flakes, and the footprints of his guide were hardly made before they began already to lose their precision, filling up quickly, becoming less and less recognisable as the distance increased between him and the soldier, their very presence itself soon becoming doubtful, the slight depressions barely perceptible in the evenness of the surface, finally disappearing completely over several yards… The soldier thinks he has definitely lost the trail when he sees the boy waiting for him a few steps away under a street-lamp, wrapped tightly in his black cape which is already white with snow.” (Robbe-Grillet, In the Labyrinth: 100.)

“That night she stared at herself in the glass; and even as she did so she hated her body with its muscular shoulders, its small compact breasts, and its slender flanks of an athlete. All her life she must drag this body of hers like a monstrous fetter imposed on her spirit. This strangely ardent yet sterile body that must worship yet never be worshipped in return by the creature of its adoration. She longed to maim it, for it made her feel cruel; it was so white, so strong, and so self-sufficient; yet without so poor and unhappy a thing that her eyes filled with tears and her hate turned to pity. She began to grieve over it, touching her breasts with pitiful fingers, storking her shoulders, letting her hands slip along her straight thighs—Oh, poor and most desolate body!” (Radclyffe Hall, The Well, quoted in Love, Feeling Backward: 115.)


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“What is the distance between the face in the mirror and the mirror in front of the face where the boundaries blur? The real is the unreal…and I say I. But when I say I, I’m not the woman who is writing this very page. When I say I, I’m merely imagining myself. She is the one who is writing. And my face in the mirror? Who is it? Who is the woman who writes me? I know because I made her up…She has no I. She’s the other. [She] has no knowledge of her I. Done in by a single letter. In one letter I am I. And in my faces in the mirror. I?” (Helena Parent Cunha, Women Between Mirrors, cited in Violence and the Female Imagination: 166.)

“When the antagonistic dyad is replaced by the notorious ‘thriving multitude’, the gap which is thereby obliterated is, consequently, not simply the gap between different contents within society, but the antagonistic gap between Social and non-Social, the gap that affects the very Universal notion of the Social. To avoid a misunderstanding: there is, of course, a plurality of sexual subjective positions and practices, which cannot be reduced to variations of or deviations from some fundamental symbolic Norm (like ‘straight’ heterosexuality). The key question, however, is: Does this plurality emerge as the series of failed attempts to symbolize the Real of an antagonism/impossibility, or is it simply a multitude thriving against the background of the all-encompassing One, its medium? (Žižek, Did Somebody Say Totalitarianism? Five Interventions In The (Mis) Use Of A Notion: 239-240.)

“She had heard all about excluded middles; they were bad shit, to be avoided; and how had it ever happened here, with the chance once so good for diversity? For it was now like walking among matrices of a great digital computer, the zeroes and ones twinned above, hanging like balanced mobiles right and left, ahead, thick, maybe endless.” (Thomas Pynchon, The Crying of Lot 49, cited in Joseph M. Conte, Design and Debris: A Chaotics of Postmodern American Fiction. Tuscaloosa and London: The University of Alabama Press, 2002: 163.)

“Baudelaire is said (by Sartre) to have wanted to attain what Bataille calls the “ultimate definition of poetry”—and, I add, the ultimate aim of sexuality—which is the “impossible” fusion of the being and existence, of subject and object. Poetry, however, “limits it and transposes it into the realm of the impossible and the unsatisfiable.” Sartre’s view, as Bataille quotes him, was that Baudelaire’s “dearest wish was to be like the stone, the statue, in the repose of immutability.” Bataille replies that this may be so, but the images which [Baudeliare] left participated in a life which was open, infinite in Baudelaire’s sense of the word (in the sense of


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that which is not subordinated to anything other than its primary impulse and which is indifferent to every external consideration), that is to say, unsatisfied. Is it therefore misleading to maintain that Baudelaire wanted the impossible statue or that he could not exist, unless we immediately add that he wanted the impossible far more than he wanted the statue….[although] Sartre is justified in claiming that Baudelaire wanted something which seems ruinous to us.” (Christopher M. Gemerchak, The Sunday of the Negative: Reading Bataille Reading Hegel. Albany: State University of New York, 2003: 151-152.)

“Sometimes it looks to me as if, in my role as a psycho-historian, I tried to diagnose the schizophrenia of Western civilization from its images in an autobiographical reflex. The ecstatic ‘Nympha’ (manic) on the one side and the mourning river-god (depressive) on the other.” (Aby Warburg cited in Agamben, Potentialities: 97.)

“THE MASCULINE FUTURE There are some exceptions. There have always been those uncertain, poetic persons who have not let themselves be reduced to dummies programmed by pitiless repression of the homosexual element. Men or women: beings who are complex, mobile, open. Accepting the other sex as a component makes them much richer, more various, stronger, and—to the extent that they are mobile—very fragile. It is only in this condition that we invent. Thinkers, artists, those who create new values, “philosophers” in the mad Nietzschean manner, inventors and wreckers of concepts and forms, those who change life cannot help but be stirred by anomalies— complementary or contradictory. That doesn’t mean you have to be homosexual to create. But it does mean that there is no invention possible, whether it be philosophical or poetic, without there being in the inventing subject an abundance of the other, of variety: separate-people, thought/people, whole populations issuing from the unconscious, and in each suddenly animated desert, the springing up of selves one didn’t know—our women, our monsters, our jackals, our Arabs, our aliases, our frights. There is no invention of any other I, no poetry, no fiction without a certain homosexuality (the I/play of bisexuality) acting as a crystallization of my ultrasubjectivities. I is this exuberant, gay, personal matter, masculine, feminine or other where I enchants, I agonizes me. And in the concert of personalizations called I, at the same time that a certain homosexuality is repressed, symbolically, substitutively, it comes through by various signs, conduct-character, behavior-acts. And it is even more clearly seen in writing.” (Hélène Cixous, Sorties, quoted in Mary Ann Caws (ed.), Manifesto: A Century of Isms. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2001: 625.)


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“The British Medical Journal speaks of a new type of accident that can befall boys. This accident is caused by the use of a zipper in place of buttons in trouser flies (our medical correspondent tells us). The danger lies in the prepuce’s being caught in the fastener. Two cases have already been reported. In both of them circumcision had to be resorted to in order to free the child. The accident is more likely to occur when the child goes to the bathroom unaccompanied. In an attempt to help him, parents can make matters worse by pulling on the zipper in the wrong direction, as the child will be in no condition to tell whether the accident happened when he was pulling the zipper up or when he was pulling it down. If the child has already been circumcised, the damage can be much more severe. The doctor advises that by cutting the bottom part of the zipper with pliers or shears the two halves can easily be separated. But a local anesthetic will have to be administered for the extraction of the part imbedded in the skin.” (The Observer, London, quoted in Cortazar, Hopscotch: 517.)

“The poles that Kant opposed to one another – form and content, nature and spirit, theory and praxis, freedom and necessity, the thing in itself and the phenomenon – are all permeated through and through by reflection in such a way that none of these determinations is left standing as ultimate. In order to be thought, and to exist, each inherently requires the other that Kant opposed to it. Hence for Hegel mediation is never a middle element between extremes….instead, mediation takes place in and through the extremes, in the extremes themselves.” (Theodor Adorno, cited in Ahsa Varadharajan, Exotic Parodies: Subjectivity in Adorno, Said, and Spivak. London and Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1995: 56-57.)

“Just as none of us is outside or beyond geography, none of us completely free from the struggle over geography. That struggle is complex and interesting because it is not only about soldiers and canons but also about ideas, about forms, about images and imaginings … What I find myself doing is rethinking geography … charting the changing constellations of power, knowledge, and geography.” (Edward Said cited in Soja, Thirdspace: 137-138.)


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“I can touch no place I have been loved gently but I can put my finger on the sore spot of entry Archangel Mademoiselle Montgolfier.” (Fallon, Working Hot: 170.)

“Elements of Orgasm. (1) Her ungainly transit across the passenger seat through the nearside door; (2) the conjunction of aluminized seat through the nearside door; (3) the crushing of her left breast by the door pillar, its self-extension as she swung her legs on to the sandy floor; (4) the overlay of her knees and the metal door flank; (5) the ellipsoid erasure of dust as her hip brushed the nearside fender; (6) the hard transept of the door mechanism within the absolute erosion of the landscape; (7) her movements distorted in the projecting carapace of the radiator assembly; (8) The conjunction of the median surface of her thighs with the arch of the motor bridge, the contrast of smooth epithelium and corrugated concrete; (9) her weak ankles in the soft ash; (10) the pressure of her right hand on the chromium trim of the inboard headlamp; (11) the sweat forming a damp canopy in the cleavage of her blouse—the entire landscape expired within this irrigated trench; (12) the just and rake of her pubis as she moved into the driving seat; (13) the junction of her thighs and the steering assembly; (14) the movements of her fingers across the chromium-tipped instrument heads.” (J.G. Ballard, The Atrocity Exhibition. San Francisco: RE/Search Publications, 1990: 63.)

“’But our fish said, ‘No! No! Make that cat go away! Tell that Cat in the Hat You do NOT want to play.’” (Seuss, The Cat in the Hat: 11.)


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“The Man in the Cage. Again it was Gide who gave us this image when, during the occupation of France by the Germans, he confided in his diary that he “could live happily even in a cage. The secret is to establish oneself equi-distant from the four walls.” (Milton Howard cited in Serge Guilbaut (translated by Arthur Goldhammer), How New York Stole the Idea of Modern Art: Abstract Expressionism, Freedom, and the Cold War. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1983: 165.)

“’not together – not centered enough’ E.C.R.” (Fallon, Working Hot: 193.)

“Simple Simon -- To think that the individual is being liquidated without a trace is overoptimistic. For his cursory negation, the abolition of the monad through solidarity, would at the same time prepare the ground for saving the single being, who only in relation to the general becomes particular. The present situation is very different. The disaster does not take the form of a radical elimination of what existed previously; rather the things that history has condemned are dragged along dead, neutralized and impotent as ignominious ballast. In the midst of standardized, organized human units the individual persists … Their eager, impulsiveness, their sudden fancies, their ‘originality’, even if it be only a peculiar odiousness, even their garbled language, turn human qualities to account as a clown’s costume. Succumbing to the universal mechanisms of competition and having no other means of adaptation to the market and making good than their petrified otherness, they plunge passionately into the privilege of the self and so exaggerate themselves that they completely eradicate what they are taken for … The Graeculi may have behaved similarly in the Roman Empire. Those who put their individuality on sale adopt voluntarily, as their own judges, the verdict pronounced on them by society. Thereby they justify objectively the injustice done to them. They undercut the general regression as private regressors, and even their noisy opposition is usually only a subtler means of adaptation from weakness.” (Adorno, Minima Moralia: 135-136.)

“The night after my breakdown, my brother left a message on my phone machine. ‘Dave, this is your brother. I’m sick of this bullshit. You fucking asshole. Fuck off.’ They’re so unaware that we are suffering. They’ve got it all wrong. They think we are pretending and mentioning it repeatedly just to ruin their day. Just to guilt trip them for something they didn’t do. How could we do that to them?


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Then I took a look in the mirror. This property is condemned, I thought.” (Schulman, Rat Bohemia: 95.)

“Outside surged “the green, transparent tide, filling the street to a high level above the houses; and there, up and down, swam the queerest fish, often nearly human in appearance…. The street itself woucld have come from some prehistoric book of images; gray gabled houses with high pointed roos and narrow windows, the latter sometimes straight across, sometimes on a slant, the sides of houses in some spots almost overgrown with shells and seaweed, though in other spots clean and well preserved, and adorned with tasteful painting and shell figures…. Before every door stood a tall shady coral tree; and planted not infrequently along the walls, like the grapevines and roses we train on slender trellises at home, were polyps with spreading arms that reached in their luxuriance high above the windows, often to the very gables that protruded from the roofs.” Friderich Gerstäcker; Die versunene Stadt (‹Berlin:› Neufeld and Henius, 1921), p. 30. If a work of literature, an imaginative composition, could arise from represeed economic contents in the consciousness of a collective, as Freud says it can from sexual contents in an individual consciousness, then in the above description we would have before our eyes the consummate sublimation of the arcades, with their bric-à-brac growing rankly out of their showcases. Even the vitreous radiance of the globes of the street lamps, the utter pomp and splendor of gas lighting, enters into this undersea world of Gerstäcker’s. The hero sees, to his amazement, “that, with the gradual infusion of twilight, these undersea corridors just gradually lit up by themselves. For everywhere in the bushes of coral and sponge, among the wreaths and thick curtains of seaweed and the tall waving seagrass towering up behind, were sitting broadbrimmed, glassy-looking medusas, which already at the outset had given off a weak, greenish phosphorescent light that quickly picked up strength at the approach of darkness and now was shining with great intensity.” Gerstäcker, Die versunkene Statdt, p. 48. Here, the arcade in Gerstäcker in a different constellation: “Hardly had they left the house than they entered into a wide and airy, crystal-crowned passageway, onto which nearly all the neighboring houses seemed ot issue; just beyond this, however; and divided from it only by a perfectly transparent partition that appeared to be formed of thin sheets of ice, lay the luminous waters.” Gerstäcker, Die versunkene Stadt, p.42. [R2,2] (Benjamin, “Konvulut R [Mirrors],” in Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 539-540.)

“At this point the story could mention that among the virtues of mirrors that the ancient books discuss there is also that of revealing distant and hidden things. The Arab geographers of the Middle Ages, in their descriptions of the harbor of Alexandria, recall the column that stood on


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the island of Pharos, surmounted by a vast steel mirror in which, from aan immense distance, the ships proceeding off Cyprus and Constantinople and all the lands of the Romans can be seen. Concentrating the rays, curved mirrors can catch an image of the whole. “God Himself, who cannot be seen either by the body or by the soul,” Porphyry writes, “allows himself to be contemplated in a mirror.” Together with the centrifugal radiation that projects my image along the dimensions of space, I would like these pages also to render the opposite movement, through which I receive from the mirror images that direct sight I cannot embrace.” (Calvino, If one winter’s night a traveler: 165-166.)

“Lacan’s concept of the Imaginary suggests that what we call the self is always a sedimentation of images from elsewhere. These images are worn like armor, and what is within this armor is certainly less than we often believe. No self ever ceases living in the imaginary sedimentation of images from elsewhere. Thus, while the mirrored body has limited ethical possibilities, it remains as one inevitable facet of who most of us are. We can, however, complement our imaginary selves with entry into what Lacan calls the Symbolic. Here the bodyself enters into symbolic exchanges: naming and being named are paradigmatic exchanges. Rather than simply appropriating others’ images for itself, the body-self communicates with these others. Some exchanges with others are openings for ethical relationships; other exchanges, sadly, are not.” (Frank, The Wounded Storyteller: 48.)

“At the next crossroads, under the lamp at the corner of the pavement, a child has stopped. He is half-hidden by the cast-iron column, the thicker base of which in fact wholly conceals the lower part of his body. He is looking towards the approaching soldier. He does not seem put out by the storm, or by the snow that patches his black clothes with white, both his cape and his beret. He is about ten years old, and has an attentive expression. His head turns with the soldier’s advance, his eyes following him as he reaches the lamp-post then passes it. As the soldier is walking slowly, the child has time to scrutinize him carefully from top to toe: illshaven cheeks, the visible exhaustion, the soiled and crumpled army coat, the sleeves devoid of stripes, the parcel in its wet paper held under his left arm, the two hands buried in the pockets, the puttees wound hastily, irregularly, the back of the right boot showing a gash… “ (Robbe-Grillet, In the Labyrinth: 27-28.)


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“Who by brave ascent? Who by accident? Who in solitude? Who in this mirror? Who by his lady’s command? Who by his own hand? Who in mortal chains? Who in power? And who shall I say is calling?” (Leonard Cohen, “Who By Fire?” in Leonard Cohen, Stranger Music: Selected Poems and Songs. Toronto: McClelland & Steward, 1993: 207.)

“David?” “Yes.” “How are you girl?” “I’m fine.” “Let me feel your hair…It’s cut so full and has so much body And it’s the same as mine. Let me kiss you girl. Oh you have lovely lips. Shut your eyes girl…Just be my girl and love me the way I love you.” (Ernest Hemingway, The Garden of Eden, cited in Marjorie Garber, Bisexuality and the Eroticism of Everyday Life. New York: Routledge, 2000: 498.)

“I’m no postmodernist, or artist. I can’t lie. But I still know the center you want isn’t in classes, or categories, or even in what kind of religion you choose to genuflect to. It’s here.” (David Foster Wallace, Girl With the Curious Hair. New York, NY: Norton & Norton Publishers, 1996: 351.)

“As Jacques Derrida has pointed out, all structures have a fatal flaw: What poses as the center is nothing more than a tropology repressing a play of differences, or what Lacan calls a cleft or fissure occupying the structure itself. In terms of the social, the post-Lacanians posit that the generation of totalization is a social act working to contain the clutter of free-floating signifiers, an act that constitutes the discursive logic of institutions, precisely, the field of ideology. The center, which this totalization is organized around, operates as a mask: for Althusser, the center masks the real conditions of existence; for Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe, it masks an antagonism; and for Slavoj Zizek, it masks the fissure of the Real. The post-Lacanians operate from the premise that due to its fundamental deficit the social is not a self-defined whole, but rather an “incomplete character” (Laclau and Mouffe). Indeed, according to Althusser, this notion of the social as a cultural construction organized around a (decentered) center goes all the way back to Karl Marx, who construed ideology as a bricolage, “an imaginary assemblage … constituted by the ‘day’s residues.’”


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(Klaver, Sites of Autopsy in Contemporary Culture: 105-106.)

“And in less time than it takes to tell it, […], we screamed loud and nasty, and everything was transformed into Crispy Critters for half a dozen clicks in any direction you would have cared to point; everything smelling of ash and marrow and spontaneous combustion; everything—dog tags, slivers of meat, letters from home, scraps of sandbags and rucksacks and MPC scrip, jungle shit and human shit—everything hanging out of the woodline looking like so much rust-colored puke.” (Heinemann, Paco’s Story: 15-16.)

“It seems impossible to me to hold a discourse that ignores negativity. We must free ourselves from the consensual ideology that surrounds us, from the deceitful putting forward of a rallying discourse that is being called for everyone in order to get rid of “problems.” Up against such a general condition, which I recently described as a “national depressive syndrome,” I don’t believe it is appropriate to seek a reassuring discourse that would take over from the “positive” discourse we have known, which was Marxism.” (Julia Kristeva, quoted in Chen, French Feminist Theory Exmplified Through the Novels of Julia Kristeva: 141.)

“According to Simmel an ‘exaggerated subjectivism’ unfolds in modernity; it is characterized by having no center and the relentless pursuit of fresh stimulation.” (Georg Simmel, cited in Jurist, Beyond Hegel and Nietzsche: 121.)

“The mundus: a sacred or accursed place in the middle of the Italiot township. A pit, originally—a dust hole, a public rubbish dump. Into it were cast trash and filth of every kind, along with those condemned to death, and every newborn baby whose father declined to ‘raise’ it…A pit, then, ‘deep’ above all in meaning. It connected the city, the space above the ground, land-as-soil and land-as-territory, to the hidden, clandestine, subterranean spaces which were those of fertility and death, of the beginning and the end, of birth and burial… The pit was also a passageway through which dead souls could return to the bosom of the earth and tombs, vagina and nurturing earth-as-mother, dark corridor emerging from the depths, cavern opening to the light, estuary of hidden forces and mouth of the realm of shadows, the mundus terrified as it


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glorified. In its ambiguity it encompassed the greatest fondness and the greatest purity, life and death, fertility and destruction, horror and fascination.” (Henri Lefebvre cited in Brian Jarvis, Postmodern Cartographies: The Geographical Imagination in Contemporary American Culture. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1998: 192.)

“They can all be rubbed out by the zikr, of course! Wow! The minute I typed those last words to YOU, I knew what had to be done: Wow! Anything to get myself out of that trap […]. I paid the lady gladly; the Emerald for my UHER, cheap at any price. It was a simple matter, then to record the zikr on a loop of spliced tape; playing endlessly over and over, again and again and again. I pressed the button to give it a whirl; double speed and, then, double that: Rub out the word…Out-word rub Thee…The Rub-out word…Word out-rub Thee…World rub Thee out…Out the Rub-word…Rub out the Word… Such is the process.” (Gysin, The Process: 299.)

“Despite these set-backs, however, the narrator gains confidence. She feels able to dispense with the ancient goddesses she has relied on to begin her journey out of the underworld of the repressed. In fact, she seems to require no resources apart from other women who have made the journey before her and the power of her own body: she needs no trapeze to help her fly since ‘je suis moi-même le trapèze et le trapézisté’ [I myself am both the trapeze and the trapezist].” (Hélène Cixous, ‘La’, quoted in Shiach, Hélène Cixous: 90.)

“Woman: Oh. How do you do? King Arthur: How do you do, good lady? I am Arthur, King of the Britons. Whose castle is that? Woman: King of the who? King Arthur: King of the Britons. Woman: Who are the Britons? King Arthur: Well, we all are. We are all Britons. And I am your king. Woman: I didn't know we had a king. I thought we were an autonomous collective. Dennis: You're foolin' yourself! We're living in a dictatorship. A self-perpetuating autocracy in


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which the working class... Woman: Oh, there you go bringing class into it again. Dennis: Well, that's what it's all about! If only people would... King Arthur: Please, please, good people, I am in haste. Who lives in that castle? Woman: No one lives there. King Arthur: Then who is your lord? Woman: We don't have a lord. Dennis: I told you, we're an anarcho-syndicalist commune. We take it in turns to be a sort of executive officer for the week... King Arthur: Yes... Dennis: ...but all the decisions of that officer have to be ratified at a special bi-weekly meeting... King Arthur: Yes I see... Dennis: ...by a simple majority in the case of purely internal affairs... King Arthur: Be quiet! Dennis: ...but by a two thirds majority in the case of... King Arthur: Be quiet! I order you to be quiet! Woman: Order, eh? Who does he think he is.” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, IMDB)

“‘Sir: Your Grace will have to answer to our Lord for this fellow’s doings. I imagine that this Don Quixote, or Don Idiot, or whatever his name is, is not as much of a fool as Your Grace would like to turn him into, by encouraging him to perform his preposterous and ludicrous antics.’ And turning to Don Quixote he said: ‘And as for you, you simpleton: whoever has put it into your head that you are a knight errant and that you vanquish giants and capture scurvy knaves? Be off with you, for goodness sake, and take my advice: go back home, and see to the upbringing of your children if you have any, and look after your property, and stop wandering about the world frittering your time away and turning yourself into a laughing-stock of all who know you and all who do not know you. Wherever have you unearthed the motion that knights errant have ever existed or do exist? Wherever are there any giants in Dulcineas, or any of the rest of the nonsense written about you? Don Quixote listened attentively to the reverend gentleman’s words; and when at last they ended, the knight, forgetting the respect due to the Duke and Duchess, his face convulsed with fury, rose to his feet and said …” (Cervantes, Don Quixote: 699-700.)


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“We crave a single instant of respite / and a voice in the darkness urges: “On!”” (Manuel Gutierrez Najera, quoted in Asja Szafraniec, Beckett, Derrida, and the Event of Literature. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2007: 178.)

“The little hunchback, too, is something that has been forgotten, something we once used to know; he was then at peace with himself, but now he blocks our way to the future. It is highly revealing that Kafka was able to recognize (though unable to create) the figure of a supremely religious man, a man who is in the right. And where did he find him? In none other than Sancho Panza, who has freed himself from a promiscuous relationship with his demon by directing the demon toward another object than himself, so that he might pursue a peaceful life in which he has no need to forget anything. As Kafka’s brief but magnificent interpretation expresses it: “Sancho Panza succeeded in the course of the years, by feeding him with a great quantity of romances of chivalry and adventure during the evening and night hours, in diverting from himself his demon, whom he later called Don Quixote. This demon knew no restraint in carrying out the maddest exploits—which, however, for lack of a preordained object (one that should have been Sancho Panza himself), did no one any harm. A free man, Sancho Panza philosophically followed Don Quixote on his crusades, perhaps from a certain feeling of responsibility, and derived great and useful entertainment from them to the end of his days.” (Walter Benjamin, “Franz Kafka: Beim Bau der Chinesischen Mauer,” in Walter Benjamin (Edited by Michael W. Jennings, Howard Eiland, and Gary Smith; Translated by Rodney Livingstone and Others), Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Volume 2: 1927-1934. Cambridge and London: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1999: 499.)

“Mr. Blank remembers that he was planning to go on with the story, to map out the tale to its conclusion in order to prepare himself for the supplementary visit from the doctor that evening. Still stretched out on the bed with his eyes open, he considers for a moment whether to carry on in silence, that is, to tell the story to himself in his mind, or else to continue improvising the events out loud, even if there is no one in the room to follow what he is saying. Because he is feeling particularly alone just now, fairly crushed by the weight of his enforced solitude, he decides to pretend that the doctor is in the room with him and to proceed as before, that is, to tell the story with his voice rather than merely think it in his head.” (Paul Auster, Travels in the Scriptorium. New York, NY: Picador Books, 2008: 120.)

“American literature…know[s] how to move between things, establish a logic of the and, do away with foundations, nullify endings and beginnings. They know how to practice pragmatics.


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The middle is by no means an average; on the contrary, it is where things pick up speed. Between things does not designate a localizable relation going from one thing to the other and back again, but a perpendicular direction, a transversal movement that sweeps one and the other away, a stream without beginning or end that undermines its banks and picks up speed in the middle.” (Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, cited in Joseph M. Conte, Design and Debris: A Chaotics of Postmodern American Fiction. Tuscaloosa and London: The University of Alabama Press, 2002: 163.)

“Then there was the problem of the explosion itself. Considering the way I was sitting, the place to put the mine to best flip me right side up was near the lower left corner of the tank. That was about a meter from my head, and my mine was probably as powerful as the one that had done all the damage in the first place. If I placed it wrong, it might turn out to be a classic case of “The operation was a complete success, but the patient died.” That is to say, the tank would be sitting nicely upright, with my dead body in it! But if I put it too far away, it might not turn me all the way over, and I only had one shot. Then I would still be dead, only it would happen much slower.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 153.)

“The mine accomplished just about what the Russians who made it and the North Vietnamese who planted it had in mind. The only things left inviolate on those two human bodies and their clothing was the propriety of boots on feet, although the feet were ripped from their legs. The mine had mixed trousers with calf muscles and tendons with genitals with intestines with bladders with shite with livers and spleen and kidneys and stomachs, and jammed the oozy mass upward into lungs and throats. Then it burned hands and arms and chests and faces to the texture and appearance of dried prunes. Just like it was supposed to do. What happened to human beings in mechanized warfare has absolutely no poetic or theatrical possibilities.” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 376.)

“The element of surprise was lost and the survivors moved rapidly. The stone chaos of the city worked to their advantage. The deep blackness worked to their advantage too, though the enemy must know something was afoot now. Gunfire followed them without finding them. Russian voices shouted here and there, as frightened as their enemy, perhaps more so. Once through the outpost line they found the city ghostly and dead, empty again. Russian and German dead lay everywhere, outnumbering the still-living occupants. They moved rapidly like dogs


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with the scent of prey, except it was freedom they were smelling. They passed by scattered rearechelon camps, and came upon frightened sentries around a vehicle park and wiped it out with another grenade volley, their descent so swift that they took no casualties here; they kept going. A single well-sited machine gun could have cut half of them down, perhaps all of them. A flare at the right moment would have illuminated them like steers in a corral. But it didn’t happen. The ruins out here seemed as endless and as lifeless as they had long been inside the German siege perimeter, these months past, the enemy presence scattered here and there, still in some confusion or even entirely ignorant in the deep inscrutable night.” (Schneider, Siege: 396-397.)

“Because it names violence, Sade’s language is not that of the state, of the executioner, but that of a victim who could not keep silent about the injustice done to him. And unlike the executioner, the state that commits murder in the name of justice, Sade doesn’t try to fool anyone. By refusing to hold his tongue he betrays the solipsism proper to the libertine and speaks not in the name of justice but in the name of an impossible desire for justice, impossible, Bataille argues, because it is both proclaimed and silenced by language, because Sade names violence but by naming it also transforms it into “what it is not.”” (Dean, The Self and Its Pleasures: 188.)

“The problem of today’s philosophical-political scene is ultimately best expressed by Lenin’s old question ‘What is to be done?’ – how do we reassert, on the political terrain, the proper dimension of the act? The main form of the resistance against the act today is a kind of unwritten Denkverbot (prohibition to think) similar to the infamous Berufsverbot (prohibition to be employed by any state institution) from the late 1960s in Germany – the moment one shows a minimal sign of engaging in political projects that aim seriously to change the existing order, the answer is immediately: ‘Benevolent as it is, this will necessarily end in a new Gulag!’ The ‘return to ethics’ in today’s political philosophy shamefully exploits the horrors of Gulag or Holocaust as the ultimate bogey for blackmailing us into renouncing all serious radical engagement. In this way, conformist liberal scoundrels can find hypocritical satisfaction in their defense of the existing order: they know there is corruption, exploitation, and so on, but every attempt to change things is denounced as ethically dangerous and unacceptable, recalling the ghosts of Gulag or Holocaust …. And this resistance against the act seems to be shared across a wide spectrum of (officially) opposed philosophical positions. Four philosophers as different as Derrida, Habermas, Rorty and Dennett would probably adopt the same left-of-center liberal democratic stance in practical political decisions: as for the political conclusions to be drawn from their thought, the difference


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between their positions in negligible. On the other hand, already our immediate intuition tells us that a philosopher like Heidegger on the one hand, or Badiou on the other, would definitely adopt a different stance. Rorty who made this perspicacious observation, concludes from it that philosophical differences do not involve, generate or rely on political differences – politically, they do not really matter. What, however, if philosophical differences do matter politically, and if, as a consequence, this political congruence between philosophers tells us something crucial about their pertinent philosophical stance? What if, in spite of the great passionate public debates between deconstructionists, pragmatists, Habermassians and cognitivists, they none the less share a series of philosophical premises – what if there is an unacknowledged proximity between them? And what if the task today is precisely to break with this terrain of shared premises?” (Slavoj Žižek cited in Judith Butler, Ernesto Laclau, and Slavoj Žižek, Contingency, Hegemony, Universality: Contemporary Dialogues on the Left, London and New York: Verso, 2000: 127-128.)

“Some time before there had come to him the idea for a great picture. It was to be his first masterpiece, his salon picture when he should get to Paris. A British cavalryman and his horse, both dying of thirst and wounds, were to be lost on a Sudanese desert, and in the middle distance on a ridge of sand a lion should be drawing in upon them, crouched on his belly, his tail stiff, his lower jaw hanging. The melodrama of the old English “Home Book of Art” still influenced Vandover. He was in love with this idea for a picture and had determined to call it “The Last Enemy.” The effects he wished to produce were isolation and intense heat; as to the soldier, he was as yet undecided whether to represent him facing death resignedly, calmly, or grasping the barrel of his useless rifle, determined to fight to the last.” (Norris, Vandover and the Brute: 33.)

“Paco found with his fingers the place where the frag went off (the bare dirt rough as rawhide) and quickly made out the guy’s feet and legs, the guy himself slashed open in a hundred places like a burst plum—split open (the memory of the choking smell of the bloodclotted gore making Paco gag […]). Then Paco grabbed the zip by the whole of the front of his shirt, slamming him into the dirt of the path so he grunted like a fat old cat jumping down from your lap. He had the guy and held him. He felt the guy’s chest for the space between the fourth and fifth ribs on the left side, and then took his Chicago Cutlery fillet knife and insinuated it there, first pricking the skin, then stabbing down firmly—like cutting into a hard, warm cheese. They both heard the flat of the blade slice down between the bones. The guy gasped and wiggled, fighting.”


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(Heinemann, Paco’s Story: 195.)

“It’s a bit like Verdun, but Verdun without the depth of defense – and, above all, without the Sacred Way…” (Colonel de Castries to General Cogny, 22 March 1954 cited in Windrow, The Last Valley: 499.)

“In ordinary times,” he wants to explain, “the center always wins. Its power grows with time, and that can’t be reversed, not by ordinary means. Decentralizing, back towards anarchism, needs extraordinary times…this War - this incredible War - just for the moment has wiped out proliferation of little states that’s prevailed in Germany for a thousand years. Wiped it clean. Opened it.” “Sure. For how long?” “It won’t last. Of course not. But for a few months…perhaps there’ll be peace by autumn— discúlpeme, the spring, I still haven’t got used to your hemisphere—for a moment of spring, perhaps…” “Yeah but—what’re you gonna do, take over land and try to hold it? They’ll run you right off, ponder.” “No. Taking land is building more fences. We want to leave it open. We want it to grow, to change. In the openness of the German Zone, our hope is limitless.” (Thomas Pynchon, Gravity’s Rainbow, cited in Joseph Conte, Design and Debris: A Chaotics of Postmodern American Fiction. Tuscaloosa, AL: University of Alabama Press, 2002: 189-190.)

“Dies Faustus…The Consul looked at his watch. Just for one moment, one horrible moment in the Paris, he had thought it night, that it was one of those days the hours slid by like corks bobbing astern, and the morning was carried away by the wings of the angel of night, all in a trice, but tonight quite the reverse seemed to be happening: it was still only five to two. It was already the longest day in his entire experience, a lifetime; he had not only missed the bus, he would have plenty of time for more drinks. If only he were not drunk! The Consul strongly disapproved of his drunkenness.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 223.)

“Sp5 Danny Williams hopped out of his aircraft and ran over to see if he could help us. When he arrived he came straight to me. He and I both tried to free the Colonel. He got one leg


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and I got the other leg. We couldn’t free him, but I had determined by this time that the LTC Seymoe was dead. This is strictly a non-medical determination. His eyes were wide open and his eyes rolled back into his head; there was no movement and no apparent breathing. I didn’t feel a pulse or anything like this. The flames had gotten to his feet at this time. We left him. I crawled to McKinsey. I had just gotten maybe 3 feet from McKinsey and started to take up a firing position with him, when he was struck in the back of the head. I have an idea it was a tracer because I could see the ball of fire enter his head as well as the splat and subsequent collapse. He fell over onto his chest, with his body weight on his head tumbling slightly down the hill. I have no doubt that Gerald McKinsey died instantly at approximately 1745 on 21 January ’68. I also sent Spec5 Williams to crawl to his body and Spec5 Williams verified that McKinsey was dead. I took his carbine [and] crawled back out of the line of fire. Williams and I started firing in a different position.” (Bruce B.G. Clarke, Expendable Warriors: The Battle of Khe Sanh and the Vietnam War. Westport, Connecticut and London: Praeger Security International, 2007: 76-77.)

“Béraud declares himself in favor of an unlimited number of brothels. “Art. (13) Every woman or girl of legal age who has suitable space in her living quarters (at least two rooms), and who is authorized by her husband if she is married….will be able, as the proprietor or principal tenant of the house she inhabits, to become mistress of the house and to obtain a license for operating a brothel.” (F.F.A. Béraud, Les Filles publiques de Paris et la police qui les régit, quoted in Benjamin (edited by Howard Eiland and Kevin McLaughlin), The Arcades Project: 500.)

“…the prostitute became for [Pierre-Joseph] Proudhon the model of any femme èmancipée. He reproaches Parent-Duchâtelet for having neglected to stress how prostitutes “deform themselves, take on the look, the voice, and the manner of men, and retain their sex, physically as well as morally, only the grossly material, the strictly unnecessary.” It is a hysterical picture: female sexual organs attached to otherwise male bodies. And it is typical of the fear of breakdown in sexual difference that underlies the naturalist insistence on harmony, continuity, and cyclical recurrence. Such insistence […] is part of what motivates [Emile] Zola’s description of Nana as “bonne fille,” while his evocation of her detached sexual organ dominating the social battlefield is related to a vision of the hystericized, unnatural, prostituted body of a masculine female.” (Bernheimer, Figures of Ill Repute: 208.)


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“I am the ulcer and the lance; I am the bruise; I am the blow; I am the rack, the limbs also, Hangman and hanged at once. Je suis la plaie et le couteau, Je suis le soufflé et la joue! Je suis les members et la roué, Et la victim et le bourreau!” (Charles Baudelaire, “L’Héautontimorousménos,” in Poulet, Exploding Poetry: Baudelaire, Rimbaud: 22.)

“Voilà ce qu’elle faisait, comme si lui n’avait pas existé. Elle pouvait faire n’importe quoi. Il fallait s’attendre à n’importe quoi. Il fallait s’attendre à n’importe quoi; il en avait les yeux qui bondissaient en tous sens. A la fin il ne se souvenait plus de la différence entre la droite, le bas, le haut, la gauche, le sud, l’ouest…je rassemblai toutes mes poules dans un quadrillage serré, et j’eus la joie de sentir que j’étais toujours un homme; rien ne me faisait peur; ma force musculaire fidèle, ma verge aussi. J’étais toujours là.” “[This is what she did, as if he had never existed. She was capable of anything. You could expect anything from her; it made his eyes dart about every which way. In the end he no longer remembered the difference between right, bottom, top, left, south, west…I gathered all my hens in a tight little grid, and I knew the joy of feeling I was still a man; nothing could make me afraid; my muscular strength stood by me, my penis too. I was still there.” (Hélène Cixous, ‘Dedans’, quoted in Shiach, Hélène Cixous: 77.)

“The more liberal aspects of Weimar prostitution reforms triggered a powerful right-wing backlash. In the eyes of religious conservatives, the state’s perceived failure to enforce “moral order” and cleanse the streets of prostitutes profoundly discredited Weimar democracy. Among large segments of the police, the loss of authority to control and punish streetwalkers similarly bred resentment against the democratic government. The Nazis were keenly aware of the propagandistic value of the issue of prostitution. Nazi attacks on the 1927 prostitution reform as yet another expression of Weimar’s “materialism” and “moral decay” aimed to widen the party’s appeal among the religious Right and conservative officials.”


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(Roos, “Backlash Against Prostitutes Rights,” quoted in Dagmar Herzog (editor), Sexuality and German Fascism. New York and Oxford: Bergahn Books, 2004: 68.)

“The creation of a highly politicized and brutally trained military force which was institutionalized around obedience to orders, fanaticism and ruthlessness, led to the combat experience of the Waffen-SS being stained with numerous atrocities. In every single theatre that Waffen-SS units served, their soldiers carried out war crimes against partisans, enemy prisoners of war, and civilians, in violation of both international law and the existing norms of war. As early as the September 1939 Polish campaign, the SS Vergügungs Division, the Leibstandarte, and the Totenkopf concentration camp guard units followed the frontline units and led the Nazi campaign to murder thousands of Jews, Polish intellectuals, businessmen and other ‘leadership cadres.’ In one incident, troops of the Leisbtandarte herded 50 Polish Jews into a synagogue and killed them. In France during May 1940, soldiers of the SS Totenkopf Division, led by Fritz Knöchlein, murdered 100 British prisoners of the 2 Royal Norfolks at La Paradis Farm, while in a similar incident at Wormhoudt, Leibstandarte soldiers forced 80 prisoners of the 2nd Warwicks into a barn and killed them with grenades and small-arms fire.” (Stephen Hart, Russell Hart, and Matthew Hughes, The German Soldier in World War II. Staplehurst, Kent: Spellmount Publishers, 1999: 77.)

“I was unsure if a European cemetery would elicit from me the same reaction as I entered the enormous Père Lachaise graveyard in the northeast of Paris, entering through its stone gates demarcating another galaxy altogether, a galaxy of rambling windows in black, terse crones, legless nonagenarians, trees trimmed like topiaried show dogs, a steaming midsummer sky building toward a maybe-storm. Dead flowers lay strewn upon elegantly hewn tombs. Traffic noise had disappeared, and boxing me in all around were squared hedges bearing flowers I had desert-booted toes jumped in slow motion and emitted no sound as I strolled deeper, deeper into the graveyard, all sounds either muffled or gone, as though I were walking into that British Columbian forest with Anna-Louise, Paris already being filtered out of my brain, being replaced by the gas that composes so much of the air but does so little, argon.” (Coupland, Shampoo Planet: 103.)

“The briefers maintained that the inability of fortresses to withstand siege could be attributed to the tendency to forfeit the initiative, to supply problems that developed, and to the demoralization that often beset besieged forces. Success was attributed to the dispatch of relief forces or to such negative factors as withdrawal of the investing adversary or the beleaguered


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force itself. “It appears that Khe Sanh is following the pattern of previous sieges,” the briefing paper observed. It discounted reinforcing Khe Sanh as merely raising the ante and American firepower by noting that the NVA [North Vietnamese Army] had “undoubtedly taken into account and made allowances for the attrition [they] will suffer.” The bottom line recommendation was that “urgent consideration be given to employing an outside force in offensive action against the enemy’s forces devoted to the siege.” […] “We are not, repeat not, going to be defeated at Khe Sanh,” Westmoreland quotes himself as saying. “I will tolerate no talking or even thinking to the contrary.” After that the MACV [Military Assistance Command Vietnam] commander stalked out of the room.” (Prados and Stubbe, Valley of Decision: 400.)

“After its capitulation, Perusia was destroyed by fire, an event recorded by both Dio and Appian. Appian includes a detail that the fire was begun by a crazed veteran who committed suicide by burning his house down, after which the fire spread throughout the city. Appian’s account of the entire affair emphasizes the clemency of Octavian to most of those involved in the siege and the unfortunate and accidental destruction of the city counter to Octavian’s wishes, while Dio’s account centers on the gruesome story of human sacrifice and leaves the reader with the impression that the fire was a deliberate part of the punishment of the city as part of Octavian’s revenge for the killing of Caesar, while Appian constructs the narrative as an unfortunate episode among a series of difficulties developing between Antony and Cleopatra. These two approaches reflect different traditions in the propaganda.” (Dowling, Clemency & Cruelty in the Roman World: 51.)

“Is it my sole function in life, I thought, to be the ruin of other people’s hopes? Through all my active life fate always seems to have brought me in for the dénoument of other people’s dramas. As if nobody could die or despair without my help. I’ve been the indispensable figure of the fifth act, thrust into the pitiful role of executioner or betrayer. What was fate’s purpose? Perhaps I was meant to be a writer of bourgeois tragedies or novels of family life, or a purveyor of stories, perhaps, for the Reader’s Library? How can one tell? Many people start life expecting to end up as Alexander the Great or Lord Byron, then spend their whole lives as titular councilors.” (Lermontov, A Hero Of Our Time: 110-111.)


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“He pressed the muzzle of his gun, Eric did, against the palm of his left hand. He tried to think clearly. He thought of his chief of security flat on the asphalt, a second yet left in his life. He thought of the others down the years, hazy and nameless. He felt an enormous remorseful awareness. It moved through him, called guilt, and strange how soft the trigger felt against his skin.” (De Lillo, Cosmopolis: 196.)

“The presence of a huge army revolver at the back of the drawer was enough to dictate her attitude. This is not the first time that things have been the instigators of an act and must alone bear the fearful, though light, responsibility for a crime. This revolver became—or so it seemed—the indispensable accessory of her gesture. It was a continuation of her heroine’s outstretched arm, in fact, it haunted her, since there’s no denying it, with a brutality that burned her cheeks, just as the girls of the village were haunted by the brutal slaying of Alberto’s thick hands in his pockets. But—just as I myself would be willing to kill only a lithe adolescent in order to bring forth a corpse from his death, though a corpse still warm and a shade sweet to hug, so Ernestine agreed to kill only on condition that she avoid the horror that the here below would not fail to inspire her […], and the horror of an angelic beyond, or perhaps to make the moment more stately—she put on her jewels.” (Jean Genet (Bernard Frechtman, Translator), Our Lady of the Flowers. New York, NY: Basic Books, 11963: 64.)

“‘No, I wouldn’t do that’, said the Consul quietly, turning round. ‘That’s a Colt .17, isn’t it? It throws a lot of steel shavings.’” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 373.)

“In the Miles Gloriosus, the immediacy and reality of Roman punishment are conveyed by the many crucifixion jokes told by slaves. The fear of being put to death for disobedience is perhaps an exaggeration, although there were no laws in this period to punish an owner for destroying his slave. Torture and execution were common for slaves committing serious offenses, such as plotting against a master’s life, setting fires in the city, or stealing an object of significant value.” (Dowling, Clemency & Cruelty in the Roman Wor1d: 12.)


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“It follows that the game of chess, in its effects upon mental character, is greatly misunderstood. I am not now writing a treatise, but simply prefacing a somewhat peculiar narrative by observations very much at random; I will, therefore, take occasion to assert that the higher powers of the reflective intellect are more decidedly and more usefully tasked by the unostentatious game of draughts than by all the elaborate frivolity of chess. In this latter, where the pieces have different and bizarre motions, with various and variable values, what is only complex is mistaken (a not unusual error) for what is profound. The attention is here called powerfully into play. If it flag for an instant, an oversight is committed, resulting in injury or defeat. The possible moves being not only manifold but involute, the chances of such oversights are multiplied; and in nine cases out of ten it is the more concentrative rather than the more acute player who conquers.” (Poe, “The Murders in the Rue Morgue,” in Edgar Allen Poe, Tales of Mystery & Imagination. London: Arcturus Publishing, 2008: 174.)

“By day the over flights of B-52s. Psychotic patients exposed to continuous Vietnam war newsreel material have shown marked improvements in overall health, self-maintenance and ability to cope with tasks. Similar advances have been shown by disturbed children. Deprivation of newsreel and TV screenings led to symptoms of withdrawal and a lowering of general health. This accords with the behavior of a volunteer group of suburban housewives during New Year truce periods. Levels of overall health and sexual activity fell notably, only restored by the Tet offensive and the capture of the US embassy. Suggestions have been made for increasing the violence and latent sexuality of the war, and current peace moves may require the manufacture of simulated newsreels. Already it has been shown that simulated films of the execution and maltreatment of children have notably beneficial effects on awareness and verbal facility of psychotic children.” (Ballard (V. Vale and Andrea Juno, Editors), The Atrocity Exhibition: 95.)

“Before flying to China Richard Nixon ordered a thousand targets in Laos and Cambodia bombed by squadrons of B-52s...Richard Nixon was pleased with the bombing, knowing that Chairman Mao would be impressed by such power…The bombs were falling thick as hail in a summer storm when Richard Nixon set foot in China, grinning.” (Guy Davenport, Da Vinci’s Bicycle, in Andre Furlani, Guy Davenport, Postmodern and After. Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press, 2007: 177-178.)


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“We also shot propaganda leaflets at the enemy. These leaflets pictured a B-52 bomber dropping its entire bomb load. Enemy defectors made clear that this was the weapon they most feared. On the reverse side of the leaflet was a photograph of a smiling, friendly ARVN pointing a seemingly bewildered by grateful VC soldier the way to the nearest POW camp. The picture was so far removed from the reality of things, a kind of Vietnamese Norman Rockwell portrait, that it often became the object of darkly humorous comments like, “I wonder if that Cong will still be smiling once they’ve attached the electrode to his balls?” (Archer, A Patch of Ground: 115.)

“Scrunched into the narrow seat of the American machine I think of the giant bombers roaring over Asia. Everything is good or bad that America looses on humanity. Still today. Always still. Bombing. Scrunched up Bombarded.” (Hélène Cixous, Manhattan: Letters from Pre-History. Bronx, NY: Fordham University Press, 2007: 95.)

“Away with you, you evil enchanters! Away with you, you rabble of sorcerer’s; for I am Don Quixote de la Mancha, against whom all your wicked aspirations are powerless, impotent!’ ‘And turning to face the cats that were rushing to and fro in his room, he slashed at them again and again; they raced over to the grill and clambered out, but one of them, hard pressed by Don Quixote’s sword, hurled itself at his face and clung on to his nose with its claws and its teeth, the pain of which made him cry out as loud as he could. When the Duke and Duchess heard him they guessed what was happening and rushed to his room, and when they unlocked the door with their master key, they found the poor knight struggling with all his strength to tear the cat off his face. They ran in with their candles held aloft and saw the prodigious battle; the Duke moved in to break it up, but Don Quixote yelled: ‘No, nobody must pull him off! Let me fight hand-to-hand with this devil, this sorcerer, this enchanter, and I will show him what Don Quixote de la Mancha is made of!’” (Cervantes, Don Quixote: 795.)

“But she held me so tightly there was nowhere to hide my head except in her bosom and I was far too frightened of her to do that. Mother; but too much mother, a femaleness too vast, too gross for my imagination to contain, a voice whose rumbling basso-profundo set up vibrations inside my head as if every tiny hair in the vestibule of my ear had turned into a tuning-fork. And now my consciousness had such huge, random gaps in it I could hardly tell what she was doing


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or saying; but I think she kissed my belly, just below my navel, I think I remember I felt her breath tickling me and the wet leather convulsion of her lips on my twitching skin.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 66.)

“[I]dentity cannot be thought or worked through itself alone; it cannot constitute or even imagine itself without that radical originary break or flaw which will not be repressed, because Moses was Egyptian, and therefore always outside the identity inside which so many have stood and suffered – and later, perhaps, even triumphed. The strength of this thought is, I believe, that it can be articulated in and speak to other besieged identities as well – not through dispensing palliatives such as tolerance and compassion but, rather, by attending to it as a troubling disabling, destabilizing, secular wound – the essence of the cosmopolitan, from which there can be no recovery, no state of resolved or Stoic calm, and no utopian reconciliation even within itself.” (Edward Said, Freud and the Non-European London: Verso, 2003: 54.)

“National symbols—flags, patriotic songs, sentimental dedications—invade and take over cultural space. Art becomes infected with the platitudes of patriotism. More important, the use of a nation’s cultural resources to back up the war effort is essential to mask the contradictions and lies that mount over time in the drive to sustain war. Cultural and national symbols that do not support the crusade are often ruthlessly removed.” (Chris Hedges, War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning. New York, NY: Anchor Books, 2003: 63.)

“We had now reached the top of this jutting cliff. The ledge was covered with fine sand and might have been prepared for a duel. There were mountains all round, their peaks jostling together like an enormous flock of sheep, fading into the golden morning haze. The massive white shape of Elbrus towered in the south, at the end of the chain of icy peaks. Wispy clouds blowing in from the east drifted through the mountains. I went to the edge of the shelf and looked down. My head almost reeled. Below me it was dark and cold as a grave, and jagged, moss-covered rocks, brought down by time and storms, awaited their prey.” (Lermontov, A Hero Of Our Time: 137.)


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“As things stand, we can neither cling to Modernity in its historic form, nor reject it totally— least of all despise it. The task is, rather, to reform, and even reclaim, our inherited modernity, by humanizing it. These words are not empty exhortation. […] [M]uch of what is good in modern thought and practice has already gone some way toward redeeming itself. In particular, the natural sciences, as they exist in the closing years of the 20th century, have come a long way from the mechanistic physics—or “natural philosophy”—that took shape in the 75 years after Descartes’ manifesto in the Discourse on Method. Far from being formal systems based on abstract theoretical ideas alone, with a “certainty” borrowed from geometry, today’s sciences are deeply grounded in experience; while, increasingly, their practical use is subject to criticism, in terms of their human impact.” (Stephen Toulmin, Cosmopolis: The Hidden Agenda of Modernity. Chicago, IL., and London: University of Chicago Press, 1992: 181.)

“Pin is sitting all alone on a mountain crest; sheer away at his feet drop rocky slopes furry with bushes, and then valley folding into valley down to where the black rivers coil in the depths. Long wisps of cloud are moving up the slopes and blotting out the scattered villages and trees.” (Italo Calvino, (Archibald Colquhoun, Translator), The Path to the Spider’s Nests. New York, NY: Ecco Press, 2000: 175.)

“I feel so far away from them, on the top of this hill. It seems as though I belong to another species. They come out of their offices after their day of work, they look at the houses and the the squares with satisfaction, they think it is their city, a good, solid, bourgeois city. They aren’t afraid they feel at home. All they have ever seen is trained water running from taps, light which fills bulbs when you turn on the switch, half-breed bastard trees held up with crutches. They have proof, a hundred times a day, that everything happens mechanically, that the world obeys fixed, unchangeable laws.” (Sartre, Nausea: 158.)

“So, we all stood to attention at our posts and the last door opens and in she comes like Virgil in Hell, with her little Dante trotting after, whickering to himself with deliciously scarified anticipation, and the candle-lantern throwing all manner of shadows on the sweating walls. ‘She’d stop at random in front of one niche or another and she’d say: ‘Shall I open the curtain? Who knows what spectacle of the freakish and unnatural lies behind it!’ And they’d say, ‘yes’, or, ‘no’, depending on whether they’d been before, for if they’d been before, they’d


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got their fancies picked out. And if it was, “yes”, she’d pull back the curtain while Toussaint wheezed out a shocking discord on the old harmonium. ‘And there she’d be.’ ‘It cost another hundred guineas to have the Wiltshire Wonder suck you off and a cool two fifty to take Albert/Albertina upstairs because s/he was one of each and then as much again, while the tariff soared by leaps and bounds if you wanted anything out of the ordinary.’” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 62.)

“So that’s how it went. I fucked her and sucked her and reached behind to that place you can only get to with your fingers. Who knows what it looks like? Each time that it was my turn she held me and guided my hands to my own cunt and then held her hands over mine while I masturbated. That happened a couple of times. When she was ready to let me have it, she guided my hands there instead and put her hands over them. It was so weird, it was sexy, but there was also too much fear going on in the safest place. That place between our bodies.” (Schulman, Rat Bohemia: 35.)

“Wicked Witch of the West: Ring around the rosie, a pocket full of spears! Thought you were pretty foxy, didn't you? Well! The last to go will see the first three go before her! And your mangy little dog, too!” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“Right here was a twenty-first version of General Custer’s last stand, Little Bighorn with turbans. But they hadn’t gotten us yet. And if I had my way, they were never going to. I know all four of us thought exactly that. Our only option, however, was to get to flatter ground. And there wasn’t any of that up here. There was only one way for us to go, backward and down, straight down. Mike Murphy called it. “They’ll kill us all if we stay here! Jump, guys, for fuck’s sake, jump!” (Luttrell, Lone Survivor: 222-223.)

“Like Lucifer, I fell. Down, down, down I tumbled, bang with a bump on the Persian rug below me, flat on my face amongst those blooms and beasts that never graced no natural forest,


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those creatures of dream and abstraction not unlike myself, Mr. Walser. And then I knew I was not yet ready to bear on my back the great burden of my unnaturalness.” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 30.)

“At this moment her thoughts were interrupted by a loud shouting of ‘Ahoy! Ahoy! Check!’ and a Knight, dressed in crimson armor, came galloping down upon her, brandishing a great club. Just as he reached her, the horse stopped suddenly: ‘You’re my prisoner!’ the Knight cried, as he tumbled off his horse. Startled as she was, Alice was more frightened for him than for herself at the moment, and watching him with some anxiety as he mounted again. As soon as he was comfortably in the saddle, he began to once more ‘You’re my – ‘but here another voice broke in ‘Ahoy! Ahoy! Check!’ and Alice looked round in some surprise for the new enemy. This time it was a White Knight. He drew up at Alice’s side, and tumbled off his horse just as the Red Knight had done then he got on again, and the two Knights sat and looked at each other without speaking. Alice looked from one to the other in some bewilderment. ‘She’s my prisoner, you know!’ the Red Knight said at last. ‘Yes, but then I came and rescued her!’ the White Knight replied. ‘Well, we must fight for her, then’ said the Red Knight, as he took up his helmet (which hung from the saddle, and was something the shape of a horse’s head), and put it on. … Another Rule of Battle, that Alice had not noticed, seemed to be that they always fell on their heads, and the battle ended with their both falling off in this way, side by side: when they got up again, they shook hands, and then the Red Knight mounted and galloped off. ‘It was a glorious victory, wasn’t it?’ said the White Knight, as he came up panting.” (Lewis Carroll, 84-85.)

“He gave her a filigree brooch shaped like a scimitar which he claimed belonged to his mother but which she wouldn’t have accepted if she hadn’t been sure he travelled with a bag of them. She accepted a transparent black nightgown like the ones advertised in the back of Playboy, the kind he seriously believed every American girl coveted—she was delighted with this naïveté.” (Cohen, The Favorite Game: 163.)


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“I could not forebear shaking my head, and smiling a little at his ignorance. And being no stranger to the art of war, I gave him a description of cannons, culverins, muskets, carbines, pistols, bullets, powder, swords, bayonets, sieges, retreats, attacks, undermines, countermines, bombardments, sea fights, ships sunk with a thousand men, twenty thousand killed on each side, dying groans, limbs flying in the air, smoke, noise, confusion, trampling to death under horses’ feet, flight, pursuit, victory; fields strewed with carcasses, left for food to dogs and wolves and birds of prey, plundering, stripping, ravishing, burning, and destroying. And to set forth the valor of my own dear countrymen, I assured him, that I had seen them blow up a hundred enemies at once in a siege, and as many in a ship, and beheld the dead bodies drop down in pieces from the clouds, to the great diversion of the spectators.” (Swift, Gulliver’s Travels: 260.)

“ATYS The springtime will never again return, O eternal Mother! Despite my love, it is no longer possible for me to penetrate thy essence. Would that I might cover myself with a painted robe like thine. I envy thy breasts, swelling with milk, the length of thy tresses, thy vast flanks that have borne and brought forth all creatures. Why am I not though?—Why am I not woman?— No, never! Depart from me! My virility fills me with horror! With a sharp stone he emasculates himself and runs furiously from her, holding his severed member aloft. The priests imitate the god; the faithful do even as the priests. Men and women exchange garments, embrace;--and the tumult of bleeding flesh passes away, while the sound of voices remaining becomes even more strident,--like the shrieking of mourners, like the voices heard at funerals.” (Gustave Flaubert (Kitty Mrosovsky, Translator), The Temptation of St. Anthony. New York & London: Penguin Books, 1983: 135.)

“[…] why was it that everything that happened to him had seemed to have happened in language? Even this! Almost as though, without words, after all was said and done, than a paraphrase curiosity, an idle trope, within some vast syntactical flow of existence? Had he fallen…merely to have it said he had fallen?” (Coover, “A Political Fable,” in Evenson, Understanding Robert Coover: 143.)


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“She descends a precipitous slope—shrieking, despairing, tearing her hair. Ah! lies, lies! Daira has not been restored to me! The voice of brass calls me to the dead. This is another Tartarus, whence there is no return! Horror! The abyss engulfs her.” (Flaubert, The Temptation of St. Anthony: 150-151.)

“—Ce gouffre, c’est l’enfer, de nos amis people.” “This pit is Hell, its denizens our friends!” (Baudelaire, “Duellum,” quoted in The Flowers of Evil: 73.)

“I had come into the Sabbath orgy. I know now what is done in the darkness of the mountains during nights of orgy. I know! I know with horror: things are enjoyed. The thing of which things are made is delighted in—that is the brute joy of black magic. It was that neutrality that I experienced—neutrality was my true cultural broth. I kept going on, and I was feeling the joy of Hell. And Hell is not the torture of pain! it is the torture of a certain joy.” (Lispector, The Passion of G.H.: 94.)

“All mercenary tongues have been loosed in a chorus of celebration for the great works that are renewing the face of Paris. Nothing so sad, so lacking in social spontaneity, as this vast shifting of stones by the hand of despotism. There is no more dismal symptom of decadence. In proportion as Rome collapsed in agony, its monuments grew more numerous and more colossal. It was building its own sepulcher and making ready to die gloriously. But as for the modern world—it has no wish to die, and human stupidity is nearing its end. People are weary of grandiose homicidal acts. The projects that have so disrupted the capital, conditioned as they are on repression and vanity, have failed the future no less than the present.” (A. Blanqui, Critique sociale, vol. 1, Capital et travail (Paris, 1885), pp. 109-111 (conclusion of “Le Luxe”) quoted in Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 145.)


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“Contained by hordes of riot cops. On subject of containment. Of feminine. I offering as trope. Little grey carefully fenced-in-alley. Burgeoning with roses. Seen recently. On Revolution’s anniversary. Off monumental Panthéon square. Where Homme or homonym inscribed on all facades. Countless roses also strewn. Between Panthéon’s citation-Roman columns. By women. Demonstrating. In memory of Revolutionary heroine Olympe de Gouges. Singing: Put Olympe in the Panthéon! / Marie Curie too! / Hey hey democracy / Women count too.” (Scott, My Paris: 106.)

“Baudelaire’s preoccupation with the tangible fact of violence—occluded by structural dispositions of power, and by the de-realization of allegorical processes—glimmers throughout his scenes of modern life. His spectacle of bodies that are mutilated, reified, circulated, and consumed captures the dehumanizing impact of commerce on human relations at home and abroad. Even his most cool, ironic portrayals of reification afford glimpses into the cost of real suffering exacted by such symbolic mediation. They afford a recognition of what is damaged or extinguished in the name of revolution, progress, and conquest. Throughout his poetry, we are reminded of the violence of such teleologies, their sacrifice of a vital, differentiated, and vulnerable human reality to an ideal aesthetic and political end.” (Sanyal, The Violence of Modernity: 203.)

“But I always have the feeling that, if one fails to persist in the negative or moves too quickly into the positive, one plays into the hands of the untrue.” (Theodor Adorno, Minima Moralia, quoted in Richter, Thought-Images: 155.)

“She would pause at the top of each stroke…and then come on again…harder each time. She had lost sense of thrusting into him, lost the feeling in her newest member, lost any awareness of aftershock as with each push his skull slammed into the woodwork. Instead the whole world…nay even the whole cosmos, had contracted into a pushing clanking thing, a pulling apart and rattling together of chain links, the spasmodic eruption of a white grub from its fibrous pupa…” (Will Self, Cock and Bull, London: Penguin Books, 1992: 90.)


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“Nina lit a cigarette and exhaled. She made it seem an effort to do this, breathe out the smoke. She was drowsy again. One of her medications contained codeine phosphate and she was careful when taking it until recently. It was only days in fact, a week or so, since she’d stopped following the exercise regimen without altering her intake of painkillers. Lianne believe that this slackness of will was a defeat that had Martin in the middle of it. These were his nineteen, these hijackers, these jihadists, even if only in her mother’s mind. ‘What are you working on?’ ‘Book on ancient alphabets. All the forms writing took, all the materials they used.’ ‘Sounds interesting.’ ‘Interesting, demanding, deeply enjoyable at times. Drawing as well. Pictorial writing. I’ll get you a copy when it’s published.’ ‘Pictograms, hieroglyphics, cuneiform,” her mother said. She appeared to be dreaming aloud. She said, ‘Sumerians, Assyrians, so on.’ ‘I’ll get you a copy, definitely.’ ‘Thank-you.’ ‘You’re welcome,’ Lianne said. The cheese and fruit were on a platter in the kitchen. She sat with her mother a moment longer and then went in to get the food.’” (Don DeLillo, Falling Man. New York, NY: Scribner, 2007: 249.)

“Anna was fast while Dora was slow and sharp. It took her forever to get ready. Once in bed, Anna came on strong and was rough. But Dora really knew how to make love. They were gorgeous girls with lips of glass until they kissed. Then their fucking was a carefree heedless motion. It was emotionally connected. It made them want to be friends for a long, long time.” (Schulman, Empathy: 170.)


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“And-look-at-ze-prettygirls-with-wibberleewobberlee eyes.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 26.)

“As we have said before, it attacked in the name of the Revolution, what? the Revolution…. A mile from there, at the corner of the Rue du Temple…rose this obstruction, which made of the streets cul-de-sac; an immovable and quiet wall; nobody could be seen, nothing could be heard; not a cry, not a sound, not a breath. A sepulcher…the chief of that barricade was a geometer or a specter… The barricade St. Antoine was the tumult of thunders; the barricade du Temple was silence. There was between these two redoubts the difference between the terrible and the ominous. The one seemed a gaping mouth; the other a mask.” (Hugo, Les Misérables, quoted in Derrida, The Specters of Marx: 95.)

“Descend lower. You have not reached the end of the maze yet.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 49.)

“After denouncing all the “usual suspects” for utopianism then, perhaps the time has come to focus on the liberal utopia itself. This is how one should answer those who dismiss any attempt to question the fundamentals of the liberal-democratic-capitalist order as being themselves dangerously utopian: what we are confronting in today’s crisis are the consequences of the utopian core of this order itself. While liberalism presents itself as anti-utopianism embodied, and the triumph of neoliberalism as a sign that we have left behind the utopian projects responsible for the totalitarian horrors of the twentieth century, it is now becoming clear that the


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true utopian epoch was that of the happy Clintonite ‘90s, with its belief that we had reached the “end of history,” that humanity had finally found the formula for the optimal socio-economic order. But the experience of recent decades clearly shows that the market is not a benign mechanism which best works when left to its own devices—it requires a good deal of extramarket violence to establish and maintain the conditions for its functioning.” (Slavoj Žižek, First As Tragedy, Then As Farce. New York and London: Verso Press, 2009: 79.)

“’I study theory now and then. I read a little history of the game. The personality of the game. This is a game of enormous hostility.’ ‘I came to hate the language,’ Matt said. ‘You crush an opponent. It’s not a question of win or lose. You crush him. You annihilate him. You strip him of dignity, manhood, womanhood, you destroy him, you expose him publicly as an inferior being. And then you gloat in his face. All the things that gave me such naked pleasure, I began to hate.’ ‘Because you began to lose,’ Albert said. ‘It was true of course and Matt laughed. All that concentrated power, the implosive life of the board, black and white, the autocratic beauty of winning, what a chestful of undisguisable pride—he defeated men, boys, the old and the wise, the vigorous and the quick, the bohemian café poets, friendly and smelly. But then at ten or eleven he saw his edge begin to muddy and he took some losses, suffered consistent reversals that made him sick and limp. ‘The competition changed. We found better opponents for you to play.’ ‘And I slowed down.’ ‘Your development hit a wall. Not a wall. But it no longer grew exponentially.’ Matt looked at the playground, surprised at the desolation, the basketball court potholed and empty, only one backboard still standing. Directly below him the old boccie court grown over with weeds. Everything empty.” (DeLillo, Underworld: 212-213.)

“During the months following Adolf Hitler’s appointment as Reich chancellor on January 30, 1933, the Nazis continued to present themselves as guardians of conventional sexual morality. This strategy aimed to strengthen support for National Socialism among religious conservatives. Hitler was especially concerned to overcome the Catholic episcopate’s opposition. In January 1931 Cardinal Adolf Bertram of Breslau, the head of the Fulda Bishops Conference, had condemned Nazi racial ideologies as incompatible with Christianity. As a result, Catholic clergy often admonished their parishioners not to join the Nazi Party or to vote for the NSDAP. To expand their power in the spring of 1933, the Nazis urgently needed conservative Catholics’ support. In particular, they had to secure the Center Party’s approval of the Enabling Act […] of


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March 24, 1933, which granted the government sweeping dictatorial powers. The “moral” agenda which played a crucial role in winning Hitler the support of the religious Right. In his speech before the Reichstag on March 23, Hitler assured conservatives of the Nazis’ commitment to the defense of Christian values: By its decision to carry out the political and moral cleansing of our public life, the government is creating and securing the conditions for a really deep and inner religious life….The national government sees in both Christian denominations the most important factor for the maintenance of our society. It will observe the agreements drawn up between the Churches and the provinces….And it will be concerned for the sincere cooperation between the church and state. The struggle against the materialistic ideology and for the erection of a true people’s community serves as much the interests of the German nation as of our Christian faith.” (Roos, “Origins and Dynamics of Nazi Prostitution Policies,” quoted in Herzog (editor), Sexuality and German Fascism: 81.)

“Some of the deserters, seeing no other way, promptly jumped from the wall. Others advanced as if to battle armed with stones, then fled to the Romans. Their fate was worse than if they had stayed in the City, and the hunger they left behind was, as they discovered, less lethal than the plenty the Romans provided. They arrived blown up by starvation as if by dropsy, then stuffed their empty bellies non-stop till they burst – except for those who were wise enough to restrain their appetites and take the unaccustomed food a little at a time. In the Syrian camp one deserter was caught picking gold coins out of his excreta. As I mentioned, they swallowed coins before leaving, because they were all searched by partisans, and there was a great deal of gold in the City. In fact it fetched less than half the old price. But when the trick was discovered through one man, the rumor ran round the camps that the deserters were arriving stuffed with gold. The Arab unit and the Syrians cut open the refugees and ransacked their bellies. To me this was the most terrible calamity that happened to the Jews: in a single night nearly two thousand were ripped up.” (Josephus, The Jewish War: 322-323.)

“A horizontal salute from Hitler in the clouds! The sleepwalker dreams his face away from the long line of German prisoners of war so ragged and dirty, who march off to Soviet Arctic prisons. Meanwhile, his own lines of slave workers march feebly past ruined apartments and railroad sidings. His dreams are shriveling and scorching. His henchmen have given over


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running across each other’s corpses in Africa. Shells and flames, tanks in snow, ice-maned horses, siege guns echoing in the wind, all these assault his dreams as the Russian Frost-Giants come west.” (Vollmann, Europe Central: 137.)

“The knife finally knicks an artery. We both hear a soft liquid spurting sound … I’m bathed in warmth from neck to chest … His eyes lose their luster. The hate evaporates. His right hand grabs a tuft of my hair … He is feeble … His eyes show nothing but fear now. He knows he’s going to die. His face is inches from mine, and I see him regard me for a split second. At the end he says, “Please.” “Surrender!” I cry. I’m almost in tears. “No …” he manages weakly. His face goes slack. His right hand slips from my hair. It hangs in the air for a moment, then with one last spasm of strength, he brings it to my cheek. It lingers there, and as I look into his dying eyes, he caresses the side of my face.” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 386.)

“And, far off, a shivering scarlet clash.” (Arthur Rimbaud, “Parisian War Cry,” quoted in Arthur Rimbaud Complete Works. New York, NY: Harper Perennial, 2008: 65.)

“Christmas 2001 Oh, the future – it’s always so fucking dated. For you, for me, for all of us. If only there was some way out of it.” (Self, How The Dead Live: 313.)

“[…] the spoken word became a dry nondescript as though we had been deprived of communication forever: anyone who went on writing became a contemptible fool


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making withered flowers from fruit. We laughed no longer, now we saw the mask of terror, the funereal kitsch tied to the executioner’s philistine face, mask upon mask, the unnatural concealing the unnatural, the face of tearlessness.” (Broch, The Guiltless: 222.)

“The aimos (story, fable) of the ainigma is not only obscurity, but a more original mode of speaking. Like the labyrinth, like the Gorgon, and like the Sphinx that utters it, the enigma belongs to the sphere of the apotropaic, that is, to a protective power that repels the uncanny, by attracting it and assuming it within itself. The dancing path of the labyrinth, which leads to the heart of that which is held at a distance, is the model of this relation with the uncanny that is expressed in the enigma.” (Watkin, The Literary Agamben: 177.)

“’Is there, as I sometimes imagine, a world beyond this place?’ Then he would sink into troubled introspection. So Walser acquired an ‘inner life’, a realm of speculation and surmise within himself that was entirely his own. If, before he set out with the circus in pursuit of the bird-woman, he had been like a house to let, furnished, now he was tenanted at last, even if that interior tenant was insubstantial as a phantom and sometimes disappeared for days at a time.” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 261.)

“Then, instantly, in order to think more nimbly, Divine again became the Divine she had left behind while going down the Rue Lepic. For, though she felt as a “woman,” she thought as a “man.” One might think that, in thus reverting spontaneously to her true nature, Divine was a male wearing make-up, disheveled with make-believe gestures; but this was not the case of the phenomenon of recourse to the mother tongue in times of stress. In order to think with precision, Divine must never formulate her thoughts aloud, for herself. Doubtless there had been times when she had said to herself aloud: “I’m just a foolish girl,” but having felt this, she felt it no longer, and, in saying it, she no longer thought it.” (Genet, Our Lady of the Flowers: 224.)


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“Text of pleasure: the text that contents, fills, grants euphoria; the text that comes from culture and does not break with it, is linked to a comfortable practice of reading. Text of bliss: the text that imposes a state of loss, the text that discomforts (perhaps to a point of a certain boredom), unsettles the reader’s historical, cultural, psychological assumptions, the consistency of his tastes, values, memories, brings to a crisis his relation with language. Now the subject who keeps the two texts in his field and in his hands the reins of pleasure and bliss is an anachronic subject, for he simultaneously and contradictorily participates in the profound hedonism of all culture (which permeates him quietly under cover of an art de vivre shared by the old books) and in the destruction of that culture: he enjoys the consistency of his selfhood (that is his pleasure) and seeks its loss (that is his bliss). He is a subject split twice over, doubly perverse.” (Barthes, The Pleasure of the Text: 14.)

“For the third generation, which I strongly support (which I am imagining?), the dichotomy between man and [woman] as an opposition of two rival entities is a problem for metaphysics. What does “identity” and even “sexual identity” mean in a theoretical and scientific space in which the notion of “identity” itself is challenged? I am not simply alluding to bisexuality, which most often reveals a desire for totality, a desire for the eradication of difference. I am thinking more specifically of subduing the “fight to the finish” between rival groups, not in hopes of reconciliation—since at the very least, feminism can be lauded for bringing to light that which is irreducible and even lethal in the social contract—but in the hopes that the violence occurs with the utmost mobility within individual and sexual identity, and not through the rejection of the other.” (Julia Kristeva quoted in Chen, French Feminist Theory Exemplified Through the Novels of Julia Kristeva: 195196.)

“The lack of identity between name and object is in fact the utopian moment of negative dialectic, on Adorno’s view. It uses the force of identity (the striving for coincidence of meaning and being) to break through the semblance of the reality of this identity (the enchantment of the name). However, it preserves the force of identity as an ideal through the (presently impossible) striving to say it. In Negative Dialectics, Adorno speaks of the “utopian element” that accompanies the “pragmatic, nature-dominating element” in the simple identifying judgment. It appears in the form of a hope that “A should be what is not yet.” As a “negative sign,” Adorno argues, such hope occurs in the moment when thinking “breaks through” the form of predicative


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identity. What Adorno is getting at here becomes intelligible if we bear in mind the twin movements of the allegorical perspective which are, first, the destruction of the semblance of the identity of meaning and being (this is the moment in which thought “breaks through” predicative identity) and secondly, the preservation of a fulfilled identity in the form of hope. The expression of such hope in the philosophical tradition, Adorno asserts, are called “ideas,” and they “live in the crevices between what things [Sachen] claim to be and what they are.” These crevices appear because of the hollowing out of meaning in allegory, which chips away at the claim of the world to embody its meaning.” (Roger Foster, Adorno: The Recovery of Experience. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2007: 158-159.)

“Images of interiors are at the center of the early Kierkegaard’s philosophical constructions. These images are, in fact, produced by philosophy…but they point beyond this stratum in virtue of the things they hold fast….The great motif of reflection belong to the intérieur. The ‘seducer’ begins a note: ‘Why can’t you be quiet and well behaved? You have done nothing the entire morning except to shake my awning, pull at my window mirror, play with the bell-rope from the third story, rattle the windowpanes—in short, do everything possible to get my attention!’… The window mirror is a characteristic furnishing of the spacious nineteenth-century apartment…The function of the window mirror is to project the endless row of apartment buildings into the encapsulated bourgeois living room; by this means, the living room dominates the reflected row at the same time that it is delimited by it.” (Theodor Adorno, Kierkegaard, quoted in Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 542.)

“In spite of this reasoning the soldier is still bothered by such a lapse in his memory. He wonders if something else in his surroundings may have escaped him, and still escapes him even now. It suddenly seems to him very urgent to make a precise inventory of the room. There is the fireplace, of which he remembers almost nothing: an ordinary black marble fireplace, above which hangs a large rectangular mirror; the iron shutter is raised, a pile of grey, feathery ashes can be seen, but no fire-dogs; on the mantle-piece lies a fairly long object, not very high—only an inch or less at its highest part—which cannot be identified from this angle because it is not close enough to the edge of the marble […]; the mirror reflects the smooth, read satiny curtains, the vertical streaks of brightness on the folds…. The soldier has the impression that all this is nothing: in this room he should notice other details in particular, of which he was vaguely conscious when he entered here that other time, the day of the red wine and the slice of bread…He cannot remember what it was. He wants to turn round to look more carefully in the direction of the chest of drawers. But he cannot move, except very slightly, a kind of numbness paralyzing his whole body. Only his hands and forearms move with any ease.


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‘Is there anything you need?’ the young woman asks in her deep voice.” (Alain Robbe-Grillet (Translated by Christine Brooke-Rose), In the Labyrinth. London: Calder and Boyars, 1967: 163-164.)

“I stuck to the sandy path until my astonishment, not to say horror, I found myself back again at the same tangled thicket from which I had emerged about an hour before, or, as it now seemed to me, in some distant past.” (W. G. Sebald, The Rings of Saturn, cited in John Zilcosky, “Sebald’s Uncanny Travels: The Impossibility of Getting Lost,” in J. Long and Anne Whitehead, W.G. Sebald: A Companion. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2004: 87.)

“Given the primarily rhetorical formulas and strategies of exaggeration through which Horkheimer and Adorno depict the negativity of history and the emergence and disappearance of the modern subject, it is, at first glance, surprising that throughout Dialectic of Enlightenment they occasionally allude, although in reverse—obliquely, as if in mirror writing—to the conditions of possibility for hope […], utopia […], and finally, reconciliation […]. This becomes understandable if one recognizes their view that it is not so much “existence that is without hope, but knowledge which appropriates and perpetuates existence [Dasein] as a schema in the pictorial or mathematical symbol […].” In their eyes false reality testifies not only to a “meager residue [Rest]” but also to a “last thought of resisting that [same] reality” […]; moreover, it can, in its form as “the history of thought as an instrument of power” […], summon rescue in the very moment of ultimate danger.” (Hent de Vries, Minimal Theologies: Critiques of Secular Reason in Adorno & Levinas. Baltimore and London: The John Hopkins University Press, 2005: 204-205.)

“This wind rose determines all of the good and ill winds that play their games with human existence. Nothing remains but to determine its center, the crossing point of the axes, the place of complete indifference for success and failure. At this center Don Quixote finds his home, the man of just one conviction, whose story teaches that in this best or worst of all possible worlds, -and this is simply not thinkable – the conviction that what is in the books of chivalry is true makes a thrashed fool blessed, even if it is his only one.” (Walter Benjamin (ed. by Michael W. Jennings), Selected Writings: Volume 2, 2. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard, 1999: 590.)


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“Linguistic forms of alienation. Pensive Talita, face to face with Genshiryoku Kokunai Jijo, that in no way seems to resemble the development of nuclear activity in Japan. She is just becoming convinced by superposition and differentiation when her husband, that malignant provider of material picked up in barber shops, shows her the variant Genshiryoku Kaigai Jijo, evidently the development of nuclear activities abroad. Talita’s enthusiasm convinced analytically that Kokunai = Jaapn and Kaigai = abroad. The confusion on the part of Matsui, the drycleaner on the Calle Lascano, when he is confronted with a polyglot exhibition by Talita, who turns away, poor thing, with her tail between her legs. Profanations: starting with such suppositions as the famous line: “Christ’s visible homosexuality,” and building up to a coherent and satisfactory system. Postulating that Beethoven was a coprofage, etc. Defending the undeniable sainthood of Sir Roger Casement, as it is evident in The Black Diaries. The bewilderment of Cuca, confirmed and practicing. Basically it’s a question of alienating one’s self out of purely professional abnegation. They still laugh too much (impossible for Attila to be a stamp collector) but that business about Arbeit mach Frei will still have results, believe me, Cuca. For example, the rape of the Bishop of Fano must be a case of ….” (Cortazar, Hopscotch: 541-542.)

“If one obeyed one’s instincts, the path would sooner or later diverge further and further from the goal one was aiming to reach. Simply walking straight ahead cross-country was out of the question on account of the heather, which was woody and knee-deep, so that I had no choice but to keep to the crooked sandy tracks and to make mental notes of even the least significant features, even the slightest shift in perspective.” (Long and Whitehead, W.G. Sebald: A Companion: 87.)

“A starving pariah dog with the appearance of having lately been skinned had squeezed itself in after the last man; it looked up at the Consul with beady, gentle eyes. Then, thrusting down its poor wrecked dinghy of a chest, from which raw withered breasts drooped, it began to bow and scrape before him. Ah, the ingress of the animal kingdom! Earlier it had been the insects: now these were closing in upon him again, these animals these people without ideas: ‘Dispense usted, por Dios,’ he whispered to the dog, then wanting to say something kind, added stooping, a phrase read or heard in youth or childhood: ‘For God sees how timid and beautiful you really are, and the thoughts of hope that go with you like little white birds – […]’” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 232.)


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“… as Bataille demonstrated, escaping from one’s [male] head is not so easy. Because the moment at which the self experiences itself as loss [as mutilated, punished, castrated) is also the moment at which it is constituted as a self, or more precisely, as a man. [Denis] Hollier suggests a (parodical) analogy with Lacan: [Bataille’s] article “Architecture” describes it as an essential stage in the process leading from animal to human as a sort of anthropoligical mirror stage that might be called, in a parody of Lacan’s title, “the architecture stage as formative function of the We” (of man’s social imago). In this sense, even though he seems to denounce the repression exercised over man by architecture, Bataille’s real point of intervention is the catachresis requiring that man only take form with architecture, that the human form as such, the formation of man be embedded in architecture. Repression is thus the very condition of pleasure.” (Denis Hollier, “Bloody Sundays,” quoted in Dean, The Self and Its Pleasures: 245.)

“Crossing” may be conceived, on the one hand, as an appropriation, assimilation, or even a territorialization of another site or position, or it can be understood as a movement beyond the status attributed to “positions” located on the closed map of social power. In this second sense, then, crossing can be a movement that seeks to establish a connection or continuity. It can, of course, also constitute disavowal or defense and do all of this at once.” (Judith Butler and Biddy Martin, “Cross-Identifications,” cited in Huk (ed.), Assembling Alternatives: 286.)

“How does one cross a border if “the shore is divided in its very outline,” if the trait is divisible, if there is a “crisis of versus,” of the one against the other? [….] The frontier always intersects or breaches itself. Everything that is kept outside of it, expelled, not tolerated by it, comes back at it from the other side, confrontationally or indirectly.” (Derrida and Malabou, Counterpath: 164-165.)

“You are seeking, as I say, through murder, to overcome your ambivalence at the heart of your quest, but what you are killing is merely something in yourself. Indeed, it is unlikely that,


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when the killing is done, there can possibly be anything left. You cannot celebrate, my friend, what does not exist….Yours is a grave misapprehension, with consequences far beyond your hasty actions here.” (Coover, Pricksongs & Descants, quoted in Evanson, Understanding Robert Coover: 202-103.)

“Now this Don Quixote,” my guide taught, “Those who control political and social power are determined on total annihilation. Poverty and want are everywhere, all the time, in the imagination, in all living and dead being. ‘I was so scared of being poor, I refused to give my friends the forty pounds they wanted. Thereupon,’ the night explained, ‘my vision ended.’ ‘Is it possible,’ all the dogs cried, ‘is it possible that all the enchantments – poverty, fear, inability to act on desire, inability to feel – have made you unable to see and feel visions?’ ‘Yes. I am a total failure.’” (Acker, Don Quixote: 190.)

“[Dorothy is brought to the Witch's castle] Wicked Witch of the West: What a nice little dog. And you, my dear, what an unexpected pleasure. It's so kind of you to want to visit me in my loneliness.” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“I mistrusted men, even if it was only because of a spontaneous reaction to their own mistrust. I chose an animal, a dog: as it seemed to me that a dog was more suited to being a disinterested friend, to prevent me from falling gradually in dejection, humiliation, from falling into that state of indifference and prostration that is closest to abjection. I had observed a puppy for a few days, one of those that the shepherds of the island called “cerneghi”, are dogs that have come from the coasts of Asia, of mangy stains. He spent the day hidden under the keel of boats that had been hauled on the shore. At night he followed at a distance the packs of stray dogs that were leaving for the mountains in search of lambs lost in broom shrubs and bramble, at dawn they would descend to the marina, waiting for the fish that the fishermen throw on the shore in front of the fishmonger’s.” (Malparte, Woman Like Me: 24.)


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“[…] you will see, the worst name they can call their most implacable enemy is Dog, there would appear to be no greater insult, except for Son of a Bitch. And all this has come about through the arbitrary criteria of men, they are the ones who create words, the animals, poor things, are unaware of these semantic subtleties as they listen to the quarrelling, Dog, says the Moor, You’re the dog, retorts the Christian, and next minute they are fighting with lance, sword and dagger, while the hounds and mastiffs say to each other, We are the dogs, nor does it bother them in the least.” (Saramago, The History of the Siege of Lisbon: 60.)

“Others catalogued crimes according to age and sex. The Times suggested that it was a case of “women forgetting their sex and gentleness to commit assassination, to poison soldiers, to burn and to slay; little children converted into demons of destruction, and dropping petroleum into the areas of houses; soldiers in turn forgetting all distinctions of sex and age, and shooting down prisoners like vermin, now by scores and now by hundreds.” The catalogue in The Standard was pithier, but it, too, believed women had forgotten their sex. “Men have forgotten their chivalry, women their sex, children their innocence,” it wrote on the thirtieth. The antiCommune New York Herald declared in the same vein, “Knowing no shame,’ the women had “unsexed themselves.” (Gullickson, Unruly Women of Paris: 178.)

“A dog, older, emerges from beneath the fence of the corral: the other dogs have lifted a dry red-streaked bone from the straw and fight over it: dropping the bone, they run toward the older dog, surround him and push him toward the straw bed, knocking him over, his back onto the bone: the dog, upside down, legs in the air, has teats like a cow; our mother closes the book, smiles at me and daydreams.” (Guyotat, Coma: 114.)

“I run across a minefield my sexuality I am baited mind and body tucked into my flesh are booby-traps bombs flickknives there is no way now I can………………………………” (Fallon, Working Hot: 79.)


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“’Where are you from?’ Anna asked. ‘Oh, a small town in Pennsylvania,’ Dora answered. ‘And then the Bronx.’ ‘Finally,’ said Anna, ‘do you have any idea of how long I have been waiting for you?’ ‘Anna O. had been out in public and has seen Dora some time before. Later, as they were fucking, Dora made little sounds, said little words here and there that Anna could play back later. ‘How could you possibly think you were a man?’ Dora said. ‘When you have such a big, hungry pussy.’” (Schulman, Empathy: 170.)

“[…] finally I came upon a phrase that seemed alive with naked intent. Alive with something I knew and felt from my own experience. A beautiful spontaneous prayer. Five syllables but so what. Three words and five syllables but I knew I had found the right phrase. It came from another mystic, a Spaniard, John of the Cross, and that one winter this phrase was my naked edge, my edging into darkness, into the secret of God. And I repeated it, repeated it. Todo y nada.’ ‘Todo y nada.’ ‘Yes, exactly.’ ‘Yes. And what does it make you think of? What does it refer to, in your own life? What does it describe? ‘Sex,’ she said at once. ‘The best sex. Todo y nada.’ ‘Yes, exactly.’ ‘So what are you saying?’” (DeLillo, Underworld: 297.)

“Every philosophy is a foreground philosophy – that is a hermit’s judgement: ‘there is something arbitrary in the fact that he stopped, looked back, looked around here, that he stopped digging and laid his spade aside here – there is also something suspicious about it.’ Every philosophy also conceals a philosophy; every opinion is also a hiding-place, every word also a mask.” (Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil: 216.)

“[…] Madam broke in, ‘that eternally restless, eternally unquenched desire for naked paganism, that love that is the supreme joy, that is divine serenity itself—those things are useless for you moderns, you children of reflection. That sort of love wreaks havoc on you. As soon as you wish to be natural you become common. To you Nature seems hostile, you have turned us


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laughing Greek deities into demons and me into the devil. All you can do is exorcise me and curse me or else sacrifice yourselves, slaughter yourselves in bacchanalian madness at my altar. And if any of you ever has the courage to kiss my red lips, he then goes on a pilgrimage to Rome, barefoot and in a penitent’s shirt, and expects flowers to blossom from his withered staff, while roses, violets, and myrtles sprout constantly under my feet—but their fragrance doesn’t aggree with you. So just stay in your northern fog and Christian incense. Let us pagans rest under the rubble, under the lava. Do not dig us up. Pompeii, our villas, our baths, our temples were not built for you people! You need no gods! We freeze in your world!’ The beautiful marble lady coughed and drew the dark sable pelts more snugly around her shoulders.” (Sacher-Masoch, Venus in Furs: 4-5.)

“The Personal is the Political Is the Psychopathological: The Politics of Contemporary Psychopathological Double-Binds Midterm Examination Ms. THODE November 7, Yr. of D.A.U. KEEP YOUR ANSWERS BRIEF AND GENDER NEUTRAL ITEM 1 (1a) You are an individual who, is pathologically kleptomaniacal. As a kleptomaniac, you are pathologically driven to steal, steal, steal. You must steal. (1b) But, you are also an individual who, is pathologically agoraphobic. As an agoraphobic, you cannot so much as step off your front step of the porch of your home, without undergoing palpitations, drenching sweats, and feelings of impending doom. As an agoraphobic, you are driven to pathologically stay home and not leave. You cannot leave home. (1c) But, from (1a) you are pathologically driven to go out and steal, steal, steal. But, from (1b) you are pathologically driven to not ever leave home. You live alone. Meaning, there is no one else in your home to steal from. Meaning, you must go out, into the market place to satisfy your overwhelming compulsion to steal, steal, steal. But, such is your fear of the marketplace that you cannot under any circumstances, leave home. Whether your problem is true personal psychopathology, or merely marginalization by a political definition of ‘psychopathology,’ nevertheless, it is a Double-Bind. (1d) Thus, respond to the question of, what do you do?” (David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest: A Novel. New York, Boston, and London: Back Bay Books, 1996: 307-308.)


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“For a long time, for instance, sexual libertarians thought that monogamous sexual repression was necessary for the survival of capitalism – now we know that capitalists can not only tolerate but even actively incite and exploit forms of ‘perverse’ sexuality, not to mention promiscuous indulgence in sexual pleasures. The conclusion to be drawn is not, however, that capitalism has the endless ability to integrate, and thus cut off, the subversive edge of all particular demands – the question of timing, of ‘seizing’ the moment’, is crucial here. A certain particular demand possesses, at a certain moment, a global detonating power; it functions as a metaphorical stand-in for the global revolution: if we insist on it unconditionally, the system will explode; if, however, we wait too long, the metaphorical short circuit between this particular demand and global overthrow is dissolved, and the System can, with sneering hypocritical satisfaction, make the gesture of ‘You wanted this? Now you’ve got it! without anything really radical happening.” (Žižek, Did Somebody Say Totalitarianism: 117.)

“his being seemed

palm. He opened his hand; their appeared Once he reached the mark a pillar, to take his last green shutters. He thought her room; but the curr stirred its long obliq hung down straight” (torn text fragment from Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary.)

“A culture in which Nietzschean metaphors were literalized would be one which took for granted that philosophical problems are as temporary as poetic problems, that there are no problems which bind the generations together into a single natural kind of “humanity.” A sense of human history as the history of successive metaphors would let us see the poet, in the generic sense of the maker of new words, as the shaper of new languages, as the vanguard of the species.” (Richard Rorty quoted in Roth, The Ironist’s Cage: 118.)


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“Baron Guy had observed the storm increasing not without a secret joy; but though he liked fighting, and cherished an unbounded ambition, he was a prudent man, and one who—like all who had long sojourned in the East—knew how to intrigue and to secure the favour of circumstances. Most of those old knights of Syria joined the character of the diplomatist to that of soldier, in consequences of their relations with the court of Constantinople and the Saracens. After Anseric’s reply, there was no alternative but to prepare for war, and war à outrance. But, however strong the place might be, Baron Guy knew well that every besieged fortress must, in the end, fall into the besieger’s hands, if it is not relieved. Anseric had no army to bring into the open field against the duke’s; he could assemble two hundred and fifty men-at-arms—which would imply a total of about twelve hundred fighting men, as each man-at-arms was accompanied by three or four fighting men. Adding to this body the men in the town who owed service to the lord, a garrison of fifteen to eighteen hundred men might be reckoned upon.” (Viollet-Le-Duc, Annals of a Fortress: 175.)

“The revolution must of necessity be violent, even though violence is itself an evil. It must be violent because it would be folly to hope that the privileged classes will recognize the injustice of, the harm caused by, their privileged status, and will voluntarily renounce it. It must be violent because a transitional, revolutionary society is the only way to put an end to the far greater, the permanent violence that keeps the majority of mankind in servitude.” (Erica Malatesta, “Umanita Nova,” quoted in Erin McKenna, The Task of Utopia: A Pragmatist and Feminist Perspective. New York, NY: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2001: 54.)

“Citizens, did you want a revolution without a revolution? What is this spirit of persecution that has come to revise, so to speak, the one that broke our chains? But what sure judgment can one make of the effects that can follow these great commotions? Who can mark, after the event, the exact point at which the waves of popular insurrection should break? At that price, what people could ever have shaken off the yoke of despotism? For while it is true that a great nation cannot rise in a simultaneous movement, and that tyranny can only be hit by the portion of citizens that is closest to it, how would these ever dare to attack it if, after the victory, delegates from the remote parts could hold them responsible for the duration ro violence of the political torment that had saved the homeland? They ought to be regarded as justified by tacit proxy for the whole society. The French, friends of liberty, meeting in Paris last August, acted in that role or repudiated entirely. To make them criminally responsible for a few apparent or real disorders, inseparable from so great a shock, would be to punish them for their devotion.”


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(Maximilien Robespierre, Virtue and Terror, quoted in Slavoj Žižek, In Defense of Lost Causes. London and New York: Verso, 2008: 163.)

“[President] Johnson had reason to worry. Not only the press but even Westmoreland and Wheeler were making liberal use of the Dien Bien Phu analogy, and LBJ had had a central role in the earlier episode of Vietnam’s history. Then Senator Johnson had been minority leader when the Eisenhower Administration had wanted to intervene to help the French at Dien Bien Phu. Examination of LBJ’s personal papers for that era demonstrates conclusively that he had accepted at face value many of Eisenhower’s arguments for the intervention and had repeated them again in this own constituent newsletters. LBJ’s mail had run nine to one against such an intervention. […] Lyndon Johnson remembered Dien Bien Phu. In 1965, when he had begun his first full term as president and stood on the verge of making a major commitment of American ground troops to Vietnam, Under Secretary of State George Ball effectively raised questions in the president’s mind by referring to the French experience. McGeorge Bundy, then Johnson’s national security adviser, had felt compelled to assemble a memorandum, one of the largest he ever gave the president, specifically rejecting the Dien Bien Phu analogy for the Vietnam commitment. Now, less than three years later, Westmoreland was preparing to fight a battle everyone said looked just like Dien Bien Phu. “I don’t want any damn Dinbinphoo,” rasped Johnson.” (Prados and Stubbe, Valley of Decision: 327.)

“Svartström smiled, his was a tired, sad smile. He looked at the heads of the horses protruding from the sheets of ice, those dead heads with hard frozen manes, those shiny wideopen eyes filled with terror. He stroked with a light hand those extended muzzles, the bloodless nostrils, the lips twisted with a despairing neighing-a neighing that was buried within the mouth full of frozen foam. Then, as we walked off in silence, we were wont to caress passing, the manes white with sleet. The wind softly hissed over the vast ice sheet.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 59.)

“While observing Napoleon on a horse in the streets of Jena after the battle of 1807, Hegel remarked that it was as if he saw there the World Spirit riding a horse. The Christological implications of this remark are obvious: what happened in the case of Christ is that God himself, the creator of our entire universe, was walking out there as a common individual.”


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(Slavoj Žižek and John Milbank (Creston Davis, editor), The Monstrosity of Christ: Paradox or Dialectic? Cambridge, Massachusetts and London: MIT Press, 2009: 79.)

“On the ranch, the white horse—the king of nature—hurled through the heights of the keen air his drawn-out whinny of splendor.” (Lispector, “Dry Point of Horses,” in Lispector, Soulstorm: 108.)

“Within the logic of sacrifice that undergrids all versions of religious or secular humanism, animals are sacrificed precisely because they can be killed and then ignored symbolically and materially in acts saved from cannibalism or murder of the brother by the logic of surrogacy and substitution. (Derrida understood that patricides and fratricide are the only real murders in the logic of humanism; everybody else to whom the law is applied is covered by courtesy.) The substitute, the scapegoat, is not Man but Animal. Sacrifice works; there is a whole world of those who can be killed, because finally they are only something, not somebody, close enough to “being” in order to be a model, substitute, sufficiently self-similar and so nourishing food, but not close enough to compel response. Not the Same, but Different; not One, but Other. Derrida repudiates all the moral sensitivity of a man who is affected by shared mortality. Judging that the crime that posits the Animal is more than idiotic (a bêtise), Derrida goes much further: “The gesture seems to me to constitute philosophy as such, the philosopheme itself.” (Harroway, When Species Meet: 78-79.)

“Such is beauty, then, dimly glimpsed by Flaubert as the supreme end of his totalizing impulse. He can dream of it in certain moments of ecstasy as a self-enclosed infinity which is present even in a blade of grass. He can come closer to it in certain of his stupors. This can be seen clearly in a passage from the first Tentation: The Devil Often, for no special reason—a drop of water, a seashell, a single hair—you are brought up short, our eyes fixed, your heart open. The object you were contemplating seemed to gain ascendancy over you to the extent that you yielded to it, and bonds were established. You were pressed together, you were joined by innumerable subtle strands; then, by virtue of looking, you could no longer see; listening, you heard nothing, and in the end your very mind lost the notion of that particularity which had held its attention. It was a vast harmony swallowed up in your soul…You felt in its plenitude an unsayable


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understanding of the unrevealed whole…because of the infinite that bathed you both (you and the object), you interpenetrated equally and a subtle current passed from you to matter while the life of the elements slowly overtook you, like sap rising; one degree more and you became nature, or nature became you.” (Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 309-310.)

“The cold in the street is so intense that it grips him. He feels nevertheless that it is doing him good. But he would need to be sitting down. He has to be content with leaning his back against the stone wall, his feet on the strip of fresh snow left between the row of houses and the yellowish path trampled by the passer-by. In the pocket of the coat his right hand feels the large, hard, smooth marble.” (Robbe-Grillet, In the Labyrinth: 120-121.)

“Our task is too great, and that is why we arm ourselves with blind indifference. The dispersive force of our self is too great for us. Uncontrollable in its reasoning and terrible logic, it has created a world whose multiplicity has become unintelligible to us, it too uncontrollable with its unleashed forces. The logic of dispersion that we ourselves have created has taught us how inexorable the process is, and taught us that we cannot stop it but can only look on with a shrug; we even close our eyes to the murder that goes on in the thicket of unintelligibility all about us; and let it go on. The world we have made paralyzes our actions; it has brought us to submission and reduced us to frightened fatalists, and that is why we take backward flight to the mother, to the one relationship that remains un-ghostly and clear amid inexplicable multiplicity, as though the mother’s house were an island of three-dimensionality amid the infinite, beyond the call of any task.” (Broch, The Guiltless: 261.)

“’There’s an Algerian Marxist with a falafel stand on Ninth Street,’ Doc said. ‘There are two Palestinian brothers running a deli on Tenth. Across the street from them is the mosque and around the corner is the Halal butcher. There are worshippers standing around all the time. The Arabs stand together. The Pakistanis stand together. Each speaks and stands in a different way. When I step into Di Robertis Italian Coffee Shop for a Sanka and an éclair, there are always a variety of Muslims standing in line with white caps buying coffee.


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‘And down there, on the corner, is Babu who sells New York Posts and People magazines from his newsstand. He has a PhD in political science from the University of Delhi and has a hard time meeting American intellectuals.’ Doc had so many things he wanted to tell her.’” (Schulman, Empathy: 168.)

“Look here, my good man,’ said Don Antonio, ‘you go on your way and stop giving advice to those who haven’t asked you for it. Don Quixote de la Mancha is extremely sane, and we who are accompanying him are no fools; virtue must be honored wherever it is found, so get along with you and a plague on you, and stop poking your nose into other people’s business.’ ‘You’re right, by God,’ the Castillian replied. ‘Giving advice to this man is like kicking against the pricks, but even so it makes me sorry to think that the good sense the fool is said to display in all other matters is draining away down the ditch of his knight-errantry; and may that plague you wished on me infect me and all my descendants if I ever again give anyone any advice, even if I live longer than Methuselah, and even if I’m asked for it.’” (Cervantes, Don Quixote: 909.)

“A further weapon in psychological warfare was the deployment of Josephus himself to try to persuade the rebels to surrender, by talking to them in their native tongue, “thinking that perhaps they might yield to a fellow countryman.” It must have been a hard speech to make. According to Josephus’ own account, he had difficulty, as he went round the walls, “in approaching close enough to be heard while keeping out of range of missiles. The noise of derision and execration heaped on him by those on the ramparts cannot have helped. Josephus claims that his tearful appeal moved some of the ordinary inhabitants to desert the city, and that Titus allowed most such deserters to go wherever they wanted in the Judean countryside, but the committed combatants were unmoved. Preparations began for the next major assault against the central areas of the city.” (Martin Goodman, Rome and Jerusalem: The Clash of Ancient Civilizations. New York, NY: Vintage Books, 2007: 21.)

“The horse sees he is repeating All known cultures… The shape of his ground seems to have been A constant for all dead horses…”


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(Louise Zhukofsky, “A”-12, quoted in Mark Scroggins, The Poem of a Life: A Biography of Louis Zukofsky. Shoemaker Hoard, 2007: 197.)

“[…] without the arms of intelligence, and aspiring to the kind of spiritual integrity of a horse, not ‘sharing’ what he sees, not having a mental or ‘vocabulary vision’ of things, not feeling the need to complete an impression with an expression—a horse, in which there is the miracle of the impression being total—so real—that in him an impression is already an expression.” (Lispector, The Besieged City, quoted in Moser, Why This World: 181.)

“’Capitalism, [when] undisciplined by morality, will self-destruct.’ --Pope John Paul II America has offered its citizens tremendous freedom. When irresponsibly practiced, that freedom breeds excess. When that excess gets media attention, America appears far more decadent than it really is. But this individual freedom is worth the cost. When responsibly practiced, it generates widespread solvency and heroic philanthropy. Individual Americans are among the world’s most generous contributors to foreign aid. The United State should more widely publicize this fact. America has come to a juncture in her history. At a time when legality has become synonymous with morality, its citizens must find a way to put “God” back into their life. While halting abortion may be their first priority, regulating the manufacture/sale of arms should not be far behind. How can a nation that readily removes urban opposition through stand-off barrage tell its underdeveloped opponent not to use car bombs? Noncombatants die either way.” (H. John Poole and Ray L. Smith, Tactics of the Crescent Moon: Militant Muslim Combat Methods. Chevy Chase, MD: Posterity Press, 2005: 216-217.)

“What you are saying is scandalous, Biegard! Nobody has any right to praise the enemy.” Piroth, who knew virtually nothing about the enemy’s positions and had failed to destroy anything but a truck with his 155’s, realized that Bigeard and Castries had been right, and he felt responsible for the loss of Béatrice and the death of Gaucher and the others. Had he any right to go on living, he, the righteous Piroth, who refused to keep going, as others did, on double brandies? Huddled at the back of his shelter, he took the grenade which he carried in his belt, and pulled out the pin with his teeth and held it close to his heart.”


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(Roy, DIENBIENPHU : 174-5.)

“The naked truth. Woe is me, for I am undone; for mine eyes have seen the Queen. All knowledge is guilty knowledge, and the consequence is flight; a divided self, alien horns or alienation; a double nature, or schizophrenia; the timid heart of a stag.” (Isaiah, 6:5, Ovide Moralisé, III, II, 635-640, Erwin Panofsky, Studies in Iconology, 152-153, and Callimachus, Hymns, V, II. 101-102,” cited in Brown, Apocalypse –And/Or –Metamorphosis: 41.)

“Unsurprisingly, I was dazed. And through this personal fog of war, there was yet one more miracle for me to recognize. Not two feet from where I was lying, half hidden by dirt and shale, well out of sight of my enemy, was my Mark 12 rifle, and I still had one and a half magazines left. I prayed before I grabbed it, because I thought it might be just a mirage and that’s when I tried to hold it…well, it might just disappear.” But it did not. And I felt the cold steel in the hot air as my fingers clasped it. I listened again for His voice. I prayed again, imploring Him for guidance. But there was no sound, and all I knew was that somehow I had to make it out to the right, where I’d be safe, at least for a while. My God had not spoken again. But neither had He forsaken me. I knew that. For damned sure, I knew that.” (Luttrell, Lone Survivor: 243.)

“It was the job of General Pavel Rotmistrov’s 5th Guards Tank Army to stop him. Speeding westwards from the Soviet reserves, Rotmistrov hurled his forces into the battle at the crucial point, Prokhorovka Hill. Eight days after the battle had begun, two massive tank armies literally collided – 850 Soviet T-34s against 600 German panzers. For a time scarcely anything could be seen in the smoke and dust. Rotmistrov’s tank commanders had to steer their tanks with the pressure of their feet on their driver’s shoulders. Then torrential rain all but liquefied the battlefield. When the fighting finally stopped, all that remained was a ghastly morass of burntout tanks and charred bodies. For weeks after the battle, the whole region, thirty miles long and wide, remained, as the Soviet journalist Ilya Ehrenburg put it, a “hideous desert’: ‘Villages destroyed by fire, shattered towns, stumps of trees, cars bogged down in green slime, field hospitals, hastily dug graves -- it all merges into one.’” (Niall Ferguson, The War of the World. London and New York, NY: Penguin Books, 2007: 534-535.)


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“Don’t fall into echolalia,” Ronald said. “That whole deck of antinomies, polarizations. For me, her silliness was the price she paid for being so vegetative, so much of a snail, so stuck onto the most mysterious things. That’s it, think about it: she wasn’t capable of believing in names, she had to put her finger on something and only then would she admit that it was. You don’t get very far that way. It’s like turning your back on the whole Western world, all the Schools. It’s no good for living in a city, having to earn your keep. That’s what was gnawing at her.” (Cortazar, Hopscotch: 546.)

“Herein is to be found the ethical element in war. War is not to be regarded as an absolute evil. It is not merely external accident, having its accidental grounds in the passions of powerful individuals or nations, in acts of injustice or in anything which ought not to be. Accident befalls that which is, by nature, accidental, and this fate is a necessity. So from the standpoint of the conception and in philosophy the merely accidental vanishes, because in it, as it is a mere appearance, is recognized its essence, namely, necessity…. [W]ar makes short work of the vanity of temporal things. It is the element by which the idealization of what is particular receives its right and becomes an actuality. Moreover, by it, as I have elsewhere expressed it, “finite pursuits are rendered unstable, and the ethical health of peoples is preserved. Just as the movement of the ocean prevents the corruption which would be the result of perpetual calm, so by war people escape the corruption which would be occasioned by a continuous or eternal peace.” (G.W.F. Hegel, The Philosophy of Right, quoted in Stèphane Mosés (Translated by Barbara Harshaw), The Angel of History: Rosenzweig, Benjamin, Scholem. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2009: 39.)

“A gout of arterial blood spewed from Calvert’s wrist. Lamereaux had seen this kind of thing in movies, but in actuality, the sight was hard to believe—a stream of bright red blood, pulsing stronger, then weaker, with each beat of his heart. He reached in his medic’s vest for a tourniquet. From reading medical books, he knew that he had two or three minutes to bring the bleeding under control, or Calvert would die. Lamereaux was thinking, methodically, Occlude all blood flow. […] Halfway down the cabin, crawling on his stomach Lamereaux came on Private First Class Anderson. He was a big guy, the M-240 machine gunner. Without checking him, Lamereaux guessed he was dead. He had been struck in the heart even as the helo was hitting the ground. The PJ, Jason Cunningham, was working on him. But clearly, only seconds after crashing, his death was apparent in spite of everything Cunningham was trying to do.” (MacPherson, Roberts Ridge: 161-162.)


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“Shroud of radiant haze. Where to melt into paradise.” (Samuel Beckett, Nohow On: Three Novels by Samuel Beckett. New York: Grove Press, 1996: 64.)

“He looked at his legs and his abdomen. His skin was dripping off his body in sheets. Panicked, standing there in the frigid night outside the inferno of his mother’s home, naked but for his boxer shorts, which he’d inadvertently soaked in water while fighting the fire, Roland Jarvis began pushing sheets of skin off himself, using his hands like blunt tools, wiping and shoving the hide from as much of his body as he could reach. He’d have pulled the melting skeins of skin from himself in bigger, more efficient sections, but for the fact that his fingers had burned off his hands. His nose was all but gone now, too, and he ran back and forth among the gathered neighbors, unable to scream, for his esophagus and his voice box had cooked inside his throat.” (Reding, Methland: 42.)

“Eric wanted to imagine the man’s pain, his choice, the abysmal will he’d had to summon. He tried to imagine him in bed, this morning, staring sideways at a wall, thinking his way toward the moment. Did he have to go to a store and buy a box of matches? He imagined a phone call to someone far away, a mother or lover. The cameramen moved in now, abandoning the special unit that was retaking the tower across the street. They came running to the corner, broad men in haunch sprints, cameras bouncing on their shoulders, and they closed in tight on the burning man.” (De Lillo, Cosmopolis: 98-99.)

“Can I describe my trials? I was not able to walk, or breathe, or eat. My breath was made of stone, my body of water, and yet I was dying of thirst. One day they thrust my into the ground; the doctors covered me with mud. What work went on at the bottom of the earth! What says it’s cold? It’s a bed of fire, it’s a bramble bush. When I got up I could feel nothing. My sense of touch was floating six feet away from me; if anyone entered my room, I would cry out, but the knife was serenely cutting me up.” (Blanchot, The Madness of the Day: 7.)


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“The air grew thinner and he thought the summit could not be far. Perhaps tomorrow. Tomorrow came and went. It didn’t snow again but the snow on the road was six inches deep and pushing the cart up those grades was exhausting work. He thought they would have to leave it. How much could they carry? He stood and looked out over the barren slopes. The ash fell on the snow till it was all but black.” (McCarthy, The Road: 33.)

“The knowledge, to which the snake seduces, that of good and evil, is nameless. It is vain in the deepest sense, and this very knowledge is itself the only evil known to the paradisiacal state. Knowledge of good and evil abandons name; it is a knowlege from outside, the uncreated imitation of the creative word. Name steps outside itself in this knowledge: the Fall marks the birth of the human word, in which name no longer lives intact and which has stepped out of name-language, the language of knowledge, from what we may call its own immanent magic, in order to become expressly, as it were externally, magic. The word must communicate something (other than itself). In that fact lies the true Fall of the spirit of language.” (Walter Benjamin, “On Language as Such and on the Language of Man,” in (Edited by Marcus Bullock and Michael W. Jennings), Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, Volume 1: 1913-1926. Cambridge and London: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1997: 71.)

“The attempt to bring a messianic theory of history to bear on the course of secular world history is fraught with danger. This is not the locus where Benjamin’s actuality should be sought out today. Benjamin dwelled amid exceedingly dark times. He thought that an infusion of secular messianism would help historical materialism compensate for its instrinsic theoretical rigidity as well as for the lack of imminent revolutionary possibility. To think about the prospects for social change in such terms today would for the most part lead astray.” (Richard Wolin, Labyrinths: Explorations in the Critical History of Ideas. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1995: 82.)

“See you at the bottom!” I yelled. But right then I hit a tree, and Mikey went past me like a bullet. I was going slower now, and I tried to take a step, but I fell again, and on I went, catching up to Mikey now, crashing, tumbling over the ground like we were both bouncing through a pinball machine.” (Luttrell, Lone Survivor: 214.)


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“’Fortune is directing our affairs even better than we could have wished: for you can see over there, good friend Sancho Panza, a place where stand thirty or more monstrous giants with whom I intend to fight a battle and whose lives I intend to take; and with the booty we shall begin to prosper. For this is a just war, and it is a great service to God to wipe such a wicked breed from the face of the earth.’ ‘What giants?’ said Sancho Panza. ‘Those giants that you can see over there,’ replied his master, ‘with long arms: there are giants with arms almost six miles long.’ ‘Look you here,’ Sancho retorted, ‘those over there aren’t giants, they’re windmills, and what looks to you like arms are sails – when the wind turns them they make the millstones go around.’ ‘It is perfectly clear,’ replied Don Quixote, ‘that you are but a raw novice in this matter of adventures. They are giants; and if you are frightened, you can take yourself away and say your prayers while I engage them in fierce and arduous combat.” (Cervantes, Don Quixote: 63-64.)

“It was no dream. Or maybe part of it was, but what difference did it make. The freezing night just dragged on and on and he had nothing at all except his memories, which bored him to death in the bitter cold, hour after hour. The ugliness of certain things was dispersed amongst the ugliness of everything else, all of it, all of it, and even while he pondered savagely over certain things the night just dragged on and on and he would find himself thinking about something else entirely, a thousand different things, while wishing he could be shut of every last bit of it and sleep a little longer in the cold. He remembered so many endless nights from the winter before this one, long nights like this one, when it had been so cold that it had been impossible to sleep in more than brief snatches, and a man wound up keeping himself company hour after hour in the freezing dark, keeping himself company until he could stand himself no longer.” (Schneider, The Siege: 436.)

“5:30, January 22, 1879. With the arrival of the Zulus and the first scattered fire, the native and colonial contingents abruptly fled, leaving behind B Company, 2nd Battalion, 24th Regiment, with its skeleton force of fewer than a hundred regular British soldiers, who then had to rearrange themselves on the weakened rampart. Chard realized that the original fortification might soon prove too large a perimeter to hold with vastly reduced forces – so he constructed a second wall of biscuit boxes, running north and south to connect the storehouse with the north wall, in effect providing a vastly smaller circuit should the northwestern wall be overrun.”


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(Hanson, Carnage and Culture: 294.)

“Man denke an Bunker, gebunkertes Denken…Man denke an alles was ferngelenkt wird, an Teleskope auf Mondfahrzeugen Arbeiter über funk verbunden, Geometrische Ballette, Intrigen und Mimkry, was für ein Wort. Man denke....an Effekte in Nebelkammern, Modelle, Attrappen und jede art Täuschung...Denn zu sehen is nichts....Niemand kennt mich und niemand soll mich kennen, bis ich zu sprechen beginne. Spreche ich erst, ist es vorbei, unaufhaltsam verschwinde ich. Niemand achtet darauf, man verfolgt nur den Panzer und ergibt sich dem Sprechen, einem Sprechen das sich entzieht und sich selbst nicht mehr hört, ein gewöhnlicher Vorgang, kaum der Rede wert. Es ist wie ein Missverständnis, zwischen allen verinbart. Denn getarnt bin nur ich, mein Panzer dagegren fährt, jedem sichtbar voraus, und willig folgt man ihm. Er vollführt seine eigene Parade unde wirbelt künstlichen Staub auf. Seine Manöver sind eine Herausforderung, wenn nicht ein Kriesgrund. Und doch täuscht er immer nur über mich hinweg, der ich bergorgen bin, gründlich versteckt im Sprechen, in dieser andern Welt unerkannt.“ “Think of bunkers, bunkered thought…Think of everything that’s remote controlled, telescopes on moon rovers, workers connected via radio, geometric ballets, plots, and mimicry, what a word. Think of …fog-chamber effects, models, dummies, every kind of deception…Because seeing is nothing…No one knows me, no one should, until I start to speak. Once I do speak, it’s over, inevitable I disappear. No one pays any attention, they only hunt down the tank and submit to speaking, a speaking that removes itself and no longer hears itself, a common process hardly worth mentioning. It’s like a misunderstanding everyone agrees to. Because I’m the one who’s camouflaged; my tank, on the other hand, in plain view of everyone, advances, and they follow it willingly. It performs its own parade and stirs up artificial dust. Its maneuvers are a challenge, if not grounds for war. But it leads me astray, hidden as I am, profoundly concealed in speech, in language, in this other world unrecognized.” (Grübein cited in Monroe, “Avant-Garde Poetries after the Wall,” 99.)

“Once the smaller prey is encircled, the Eastern force has well-tested ways to finish it off. If the Eastern force is large enough, it first employs a second circle. Their [Soviet] normal methodology called for an inner encirclement force to hold the trapped force in place while an outer encirclement force pushed out from the encircled area to put distance between the trapped forces and an enemy rescuing force. Only after the two forces were in place, would the Soviets fragment and


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meticulously destroy the trapped force….In Afghanistan, the enemy…could usually slip through the Soviet encirclement.” --DoD published Soviet military academy study Then, there is the coup de grace. It is as safe as it is lethal. To escape the prey’s supporting arms, the “low-tech” force tightens the noose. To escape the prey’s small arms, the “low-tech” force tightens the noose in a unique fashion. It allows its riflemen to individually crawl and randomly shoot from every direction. As the shooters are behind cover and their fire well aimed, they don’t shoot each other by accident. Under intermittent fire from all sides, the quarry can never acquire a target and soon becomes disoriented. Then the prey is segmented […] and the process is repeated for each segment.” (Poole, The Tiger’s Way: 190-191.)

“Drive like hell, that is your only chance! When I heard “like hell,” I realized what the situation was. This soldier’s phrase was normally not in the chief’s dictionary and indicated to me that he was greatly agitated. Untersturmführer Weiser confirmed the message, issued orders to the Panzers of our platoon accordingly, and took in the messenger. “Driver, let’s go” was his order to me. After a few moments we were enclosed in smoke. I had to slow down in order not to run into something. As in a silent movie, the pictures moved in front of my observation slits: flames, shadowy figures in Russian helmets. Explosion followed explosion. Suddenly, a heavy explosion somewhere. How was I supposed to find the command post in that chaos? The messenger had no way of orienting himself, sitting in the closed turret.” (Rolf Erhardt, Panzer driver, cited in Fey, Armor Battles of the Waffen-SS. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books, 2003: 26.)

“What if something were to happen? What if something suddenly started throbbing? Then they would notice it was there and they’d think their hearts were going to burst. Then what good would their dykes, bulwarks, power houses, furnaces and pile drivers be to them? It can happen any time, perhaps right now: the omens are present. For example, the father of a family might go out for a walk, and, across the street, he’ll see something like a red rag, blown towards him by the wind. And when the rag has gotten close to him he’ll see that it is a side of rotten meat, grimy with dust, dragging itself along by crawling, skipping, a piece of writhing flesh rolling in the gutter, spasmodically shooting out spurts of blood.” (Sartre, Nausea: 158-159.)


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“Eyes open can bring beauty alive with awareness of pain terror despair or angels, not to mention desire and liquid tenderness or even the alluring invitation down the pathways to the womb of the tomb the cavern the ebb and flow of time linked to the sun-devouring moon the monster chasm of death and timelessness that draws man like a magnet from the moment he is conscious of a fall a wrench of umbilical tissue rough manhandling tumbling lying in soft cloud sucking at heaven severed weight of body on stumbling legs and fall, fall through the days and minutes. Eyes open can bring archetypes alive …” (Brooke-Rose, The Foot, quoted in Lawrence, Techniques for Living: 12.)

“He was close enough to see that the man wore glasses. There was a man on fire. People turned away crouching or stood with hands to faces, spun and crouched and went to their knees, or walked past unaware, ran past in the shuffle and smoke without noticing, or watched spellstruck, bodies going slack, faces round and dumb. When the wind blew, gusting suddenly, the flames dipped and flattened but the man remained rigid, his face obscured, and they saw his glasses melt into his eyes.” (De Lillo, Cosmopolis: 97-98.)

“Alas, there is no still path in my soul, I being evil, none of memory; No path, untenanted by fiend or ghoul, Where those I have loved best touch wings and sigh, And passing enter silently the place Of dream, illumined by bright fruit, and light, That circles from the always brightest face Of love itself and dissipates the night. There is no path, there is no path at all, Unless perhaps where abstract things have gone And precepts rise and metaphysics fall, And principles abandoned stumbled on, No path, but as it were a river in spate Where drowning forms, downswept, gesticulate.” (Lowry cited in Scherf, The Collected Poetry of Maclcom Lowry: 136-7.)


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“True, the horror of fascism admits no truth by which its own reality could be “measured,” but “its absurdity is so monstrous as to bring truth negatively within reach [zum Greifen nahe]” […]. The age of Enlightenment, “in taking fright at the image in its own mirror”—for example, Sade’s “chronique scandaleuse,” in which “the Homeric epic after it has discarded it last mythological veil” is thought through to its end—may nonetheless open (indeed, may necessitate as well as demand) a view toward “what lies beyond it”. In such passages Horkheimer and Adorno maintain, more than would be entirely justifiable in terms of the modern and subjectcentered form of reason, an almost effusive idea of a “true universality [Allgemeinheit],” a “secret utopia” which can be discovered […], “if only subterraneously” […], in the philosophical tradition. Subterraneously—because the modern, formal understanding of reason not only passes over “who is applying reason” […], it also stifles the possibilities for its own gradual and progressive realization. So long as substantive goals and qualitative impulses are denounced as merely the unauthorized, mystified force of nature, reason must become, paradoxically, indifferent to every natural—even reasonable—interest: “depending on the situation of individuals and groups, it presents either peace or war, tolerance or repression, as the given state of affairs.” (de Vries, Minimal Theologies: 205-206.)

“A January 1942 doctor’s report from Germany’s Eastern front is illuminating. Five hundred German soldiers surrounded by the Red Army began trying to escape through waist-high snow, in temperatures of sixty degrees below zero. Soon, the doctor wrote, the men began lying in the snow, exhausted. The commanding officers then ordered their men to take their meth pills, at which point “the men began spontaneously reporting that they felt better. They began marching in an orderly fashion again, their spirits improved, and they became more alert.”

(Reding, Methland: 45.)

“Beckett has given us the only fitting reaction to the situation in the concentration camps—a situation he never calls by name, as if it were subject to an image ban. What is, he says, is like a concentration camp. At one time he speaks of a lifelong death penalty. The only dawning hope is that there will be nothing any more. This, too, he rejects. From the fissure of inconsistency that comes about in this fashion, the image world of nothingness as something emerges to stabilize his poetry. The legacy of action in it is a carrying-on which seems stoical but is full of inaudible cries that things should be different. To Beckett, as to the Gnostics, the created world


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is radically evil, and its negation is the chance for another world that is not yet. As long as the world is as it is, all pictures of reconciliation, peace, and quiet resemble the picture of death. The slightest difference between nothingness and coming to rest would be the haven of hope, the no man’s land between the border posts of being and nothingness. Rather than overcome that zone, consciousness would have to extricate from it what is not in the power of the alternative. The true nihilists are the ones who oppose nihilism with their more and more faded positivities, the ones who are thus conspiring with all extant malice, and eventually with the destructive principle itself. Thought honors itself by defending what is damned as nihilism.” (Theodor Adorno, Negative Dialectics. New York, NY: Basic Books, 1966: 380-381.)

“There were many new common graves now in Piskarevskoye Cemetery. In December it got worse. Some calculated that six thousand perished every day of that month; others said four, or ten. No one had the strength to count. Like ripe pears falling off trees, frozen bodies dropped out of windows into the snowy streets. Cannibals were said to be killing stray children every day; steakmeat was cut from shoulders, thighs and buttocks of corpses abandoned at the cemetery. On 17 December the radio announced that the Volkov Front had been formed under General Mereskov, but even the announcer failed to express much hope. Now back to the ticking of a metronome; that was all Leningrad had the strength to broadcast. Children’s sleds kept getting dragged to the cemetery, with dead children on them. Poets collapsed and died from exertion of standing upright to read their verses on Radio Leningrad. Then came the metronome again. That was why he wanted to build his symphony not out of music, but out of snow and explosions. It’s almost finished, he told his wife.” (William Vollmann, Europe Central. New York, NY: Viking, 2005: 212.)

“When we reached the shore, the soldiers were already at work. Some fifty carcasses were heaped crossways on the sledges; they were no longer stiff, but limp, swollen; their long manes freed by the thaw were floating. The eyelids hung on their watery swelling eyes. The soldiers broke the ice crust with mattocks and axes and the horses floated upturned on the dirty whitish water filled with air bubbles and spongy snow. The soldiers roped the carcasses and dragged them to the shore. The artillery horses scattered through the forest and neighed, smelling that sweet and heavy odor, and the horses hitched to the shafts of the sledges answered with long lamenting neighs.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 159.)


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“Death had placed its mark, which weighs like a lead seal at the bottom of a parchment, on the curtains, the walls, the rugs. Particularly on the curtains. They are sensitive. They sense death and echo it like dogs. They bark at death through the folds that open, dark as the mouth and eyes of the masks of Sophocles, or which bulge like the eyelids of Christian ascetics. The blinds were drawn and the candles lighted. Darling, no long recognizing the attic where he had lived with Divine, behaved like a young man on a visit. His emotion beside the coffin? None. He no longer remembered Divine.” (Genet, Our Lady of the Flowers: 67.)

“KING PRIAM BESOUGHT HIS SON TO FIGHT WITH ACHILLES… ‘COME WITHIN THE WALLS, DEAR SON…COME, FOR YOU ARE THE HOPE OF THE CITY.’ ‘WOE IS ME IF I GO WITHIN THE WALLS! WILL THEY NOT REPROACH ME, WHO GAVE ME GOOD ADVICE WHICH I WOULD NOT HEAR?’ (THINKING TO HIMSELF.) HIS MOTHER, QUEEN HECUBA, PLEADED WITH HECTOR TO JOIN THEM BEHIND THE WALLS. ‘DO NOT STAND UP IN BATTLE AGAINST ACHILLES. IF HE CONQUERS YOU, DOGS WILL EAT YOUR FLESH!’ ‘SHALL I LAY DOWN MY SHIELD AND MEET HIM AND SAY “WE’LL GIVE BACK THE FAIR HELEN AND ALL THE RICHES WHICH PARIS CARRIED OFF WITH HER?” (THINKING TO HIMSELF.) ‘NO…’TIS BETTER FAR TO MEET IN ARMS AND SEE WHETHER ZEUS WILLS THE VICTORY TO HIM OR TO ME.’” (Homer (Comics Illustrated by Alex A. Blum), The Iliad. New York: Gilberton Company, 1966.)

“When after the final parade, the contest actually begins; when, after they’ve turned and turned again around the track like Achilles and Hector before the ramparts of Troy, the heroes really speed up in earnest, in bunches of eight or ten, in a deafening, hellish roar; when the real champions detach themselves and, with the crowd holding its breath, confront one another in a swift and violent duel that never lasts more than a few dozen seconds, the match takes on the


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feeling of a joust, an ordeal, an epic and merciless tournament. And then one senses that it is death that’s leading the dance—one senses that the drivers are taking all the risks and that the spectators, excited but still silent, deep down, both dread and hope for an accident. Theatre of cruelty. Waiting, as in duels or at public executions, for the moment of first blood. This ferocity, this violence, which had been commonplace in American society but which has been on the whole eliminated over the centuries and to which it yields nowadays only through marginal ceremonies like this one. Knoxville, or the memory of the accursed share of the American past.” (Bernhard-Henri Lévy, American Vertigo: Travelling America in the Footsteps of Tocqueville. New York, NY: Random House, 2007: 47.)

“Dorothy: Oh, Thank you so much! We've been gone such a long time and we feel so messy... What kind of a horse is that? I've never seen a horse like that before! Guardian of the Emerald City Gates: And never will again, I fancy. There's only one of him and he's it. He's the Horse of a Different Color, you've heard tell about.” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“Fa-hsien, having bought flowers, incense, and oil and lamps in the new town, procured the assistance of two aged monks as guides. Fa-hsien, ascending Gridrakuta mountain, offered his flowers and incense and lit his lamp for the night. Being deeply moved he could scarcely restrain his tears as he said, ‘Here it was in bygone days Buddha dwelt and delivered the Surangama Sutra. Fa-hsien, not privileged to be born when the Buddha lived, can but gaze on the traces of his presence and the place which he occupied. ‘Then he recited the Suragama in front of the cave and remaining there all night, he returned to the new town.’” (Fa-hsien, Travels of Fa-hsien, quoted in Coleman and Elsner, Pilgrimage: 177.)

“He halted suddenly and heard his heart in the silence. How far had he walked? What hour was it?” (James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artists as a Young Man. London and New York, NY: Penguin Classics, 1993: 185186.)

“Because he really was unable to tell Traveler anything. If he began to pull at the ball of yarn he would get a thread of wool, yards of wool, lana, lanadir, lanagnorisis, lanaturner, lannapurna, lanantomy, lannuity, lanativity, lanationality, lanature, lana ad lanauseam but never the ball of


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yarn. He would have had to make Traveler suspect that what he was telling him did not make any direct sense (but what kind of sense did it make?) and what it wasn’t any kind of image or allegory either. The unbridgeable difference, a problem of levels that had nothing to do with intelligence or information, it was one thing to play truco or discuss John Donne with Traveler, everything took place in a territory of appearances in common; but the other way, to be a kind of monkey among men, to want to be a monkey for reasons that not even the monkey was capable of explaining, beginning with the fact that he had no reason at all and his strength derived precisely from that, and so on down the line.” (Cortazar, Hopscotch: 319.)

“Retired within the castle, after having lost a fourth of their men who had been engaged in the struggle, Anseric and the baron were making their final arrangements. The troops who had reentered with them were in high spirits, for they had inflicted sensible losses on the enemy; and thought of nothing but defending themselves to the uttermost. Guy was delighted, and his somber visage was lighted up with an air of gaiety. ‘We are getting on bravely,’ said he to his nephew, when they were alone, ‘bravely, I say: now that the abbey is burned we are sure to be aided by the king of France; we have made a capital commencement.’ ‘But these poor monks; what has become of them? Ah! My worthy uncle, it would have been better to leave them alone; we should now have some thirty brave fellows more here, and should not have to reproach ourselves with having caused the convent to be burned and the monks massacred, perhaps.’ ‘Stay, stay, my good nephew; monks always get out of their difficulties, and they are sure to be able to restore their abbey.’” (Viollet-Le-Duc, Annals of a Fortress: 183.)

“That Hitler accepted the concept of decisive battle we may take as given. It is central to the philosophy of Clausewitz, to whom Hitler uniquely granted the title of intellectual master. ‘Not one of you,’ he threw at a Munich audience in 1934, ‘has read Clausewitz or, if you have read him, you haven’t known how to relate him to the present.’ ‘My generals,’ he taunted a group of them in August 1941, ‘I know Clausewitz and his axiom: one must first destroy the enemy’s armies in the field and then occupy his capital.’ That Hitler thereby conflated something Clausewitz did say with something he did not - Clausewitz actually thought the enemy’s capital an entirely secondary objective in war—does not falsify his assertion that he was a disciple.” (John Keegan, The Mask of Command: A Study in Generalship. London: Pimlico, 2004: 286.)


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“Without any appreciable incentive from elsewhere, the small groups of C Company soldiers advancing from the north and south simultaneously opened fire immediately and all over the place. Many of them shot from a distance, others used single shots aimed at close range, some put their M16s on automatic or sprayed bullets in a semicircle holding their M60 machineguns on their hips. Now and again they also threw grenades at groups crouching terrified on the ground. Bodies were torn to pieces, brains forced out of skulls by the shock waves from the M16 bullets, scraps of cloth and splinters of bone flew through the air, people lay in pools of blood, mutilated by bayonets and knives; GIs had cut off ears or heads, slit throats, cut out tongues and taken scalps. They murdered not just with their steel killing machines but with their hands too. Within minutes C Company had transformed an imaginary battle zone into an actual slaughterhouse.” (Bernd Greiner, War Without Fronts: The USA in Vietnam. London: The Bodley Head Publishers, 2009: 220.)

“Then one of the soldiers, without waiting for orders and without a qualm for the terrible consequences of his action but urged on by some unseen force, snatched up a blazing piece of wood and climbing on another soldier’s back hurled the brand through a golden aperture giving access on the north side to the chambers built round the Sanctuary. As the flames shot into the air the Jews sent up a cry that matched the calamity and dashed to the rescue, with no thought now of saving their lives or husbanding their strength; for that which hitherto they had guarded so devotedly was disappearing before their eyes. A runner brought the news to Titus as he was resting in his tent after the battle. He leapt up and ran to the Sanctuary to extinguish the blaze. His whole staff panted after him, followed by the excited legions with all the shouting and confusion inseparable from the disorganized rush of an immense army. Caesar shouted and waved to the combatants to put out the fire; but his shouts were unheard as their ears were deafened with a greater din, and his hand-signals went unheeded amidst the distractions of battle and bloodshed. As the legions charged in, neither persuasion nor threat could check their impetuosity: passion alone was in command. Crowded together round the entrances many were trampled by their friends, many fell among the still hot and smoking ruins of the colonnades and dies as miserably as the defeated. As they neared the Sanctuary they pretended not even to hear Caesar’s commands and urged the men in front to throw in more firebrands. The partisans were no longer in a position to help; everywhere was slaughter and flight. Most of the victims were peaceful citizens, weak, and unarmed, butchered wherever they were caught. Round the Altar the heap of corpses grew higher and higher, while down the Sanctuary steps poured a river of blood.” (Josephus, The Jewish War: 345-346.)


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“Brushing history against the grain – a formula of tremendous historiographical and political significance – means, then, first of all, the refusal in one way or another to join the triumphal procession, which continues, even today, to ride roughshod over the bodies of those who are prostrate. One thinks of those Baroque allegories of triumph that depict princes riding on a magnificent imperial chariot, sometimes with prisoners and chests overflowing with gold and jewels in train; or of that other image – which Marx uses to describe capital – of Juggernaut, the Hindu divinity, seated on an immense chariot, beneath whose wheels are hurled the children that are to be sacrificed. But the old model that remains in the mind of all Jews is the Arch of Titus in Rome, which represents the triumphal procession of the Roman victors against the Jewish Revolt, bearing the treasures looted from the Temple of Jerusalem.” (Löwy, Fire Alarm: 49.)

“In an interview with the Chicago Tribune in 1985, one of Hitler’s doctors, Ernst-Günther Schenk, revealed that the Führer “demanded interjections of invigorating and tranquilizing drugs,” including methamphetamine. It’s widely believed by many that Hitler’s subsequent and progressive Parkinson’s-like symptoms, if not his increasingly derelict mental state, were a direct result of his meth addiction.” (Reding, Methland: 45-46.)

“He noticed the way she tried to relax her body, to make herself like a child hearing a favorite story. But her hands tightened on the carved wooden arms and for a hundredth of a second she was suffering in an electric chair. Then she sank back again and tried to annihilate herself in the melody.” (Cohen, The Favorite Game: 170.)

“The defeat of Germany can only be brought about by killing Germans, and if the object of these raids is to kill Germans…it is a perfectly proper object. The blood of such innocent persons as these is not on us…The whole German people brought on themselves whatever calamities may issue for them out of this war, when they put themselves under the kind of government which was bound to make such a war ultimately inevitable. It is our unavoidable task to make Germany suffer.” (B.K. Sandwell (editor), Saturday Night, cited in Bashow, No Prouder Place: 481.)


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“In many cases the evidence confronting an eyewitness is all too vivid. In others the immediate reaction is one of simple puzzlement: blast and steel can play such extremes with the human form that the observer does not understand what he is looking at. When some random physical reference point suddenly jerks the whole image into a comprehensible pattern, the shock of recognition may be appalling. The results of massive destruction – the ruined hulk of a torso, the crimson rack of ribs, the glistening entrails, limbs ripped away and scattered, a severed head – have a charnel house squalor that denies all human dignity. On chilly evenings at Dien Bien Phu the warm, gaping cavities steamed visibly, and the opened-up bowels gave off a stink of faeces.” (William Windrow, The Last Valley: Dien Bien Phu and the French Defeat in Vietnam. New York, NY: De Capo Press, 2004: 374.)

“The messianic concept of redemption, then, does not refer to a plenitude at the end of our future, but captures most fully the sense that “nothing that has ever happened is to be regarded as lost for history” (Thesis III). The past we inherit—and this is certainly true of the history of Marxism and of Marx’s text—is saturated with latent promises that arise from missed chances, lost struggles, and failed revolutions. Every moment with its specific political task of resisting oppression has the unique opportunity to discover, inherit, respond to, and, perhaps, fulfill such a promise, assume each hope, resist again the failure. So every political task in the present is also a “revolutionary chance in the struggle for the oppressed past” (Thesis XVII). The greatest “danger” is the ‘oppressed past’ from further occlusion by conformists who, knowingly or not, are complicit with those in power (Thesis VI). […], resisting the power structures in the present permits the uncovering of past promises. In a curious psychological and experiential twist— whose curiosity may in part explain the ‘weakness’ of its force—the memory of failures and promises may energize present struggles “nourished by the image of enslaved ancestors” (Thesis XII). Such a constellation, then, allows a transfer of power from the past to the present, from the present to the past: a “weak messianic force” (Thesis II). A memory of promises figures the promise of memory.” (Fritsch, The Promise of Memory: 41-42.)

“ “Since I am no more, forget Me. Forget morality. Forget about saving the world. Make Me up.” Obeying these teachings – my last memories – I said “Goodbye” to God the Monstrous Liar and Monster-Wonder and walked over to my horse. I took Rocinante’s rein in my hand, for she was too old and worn-out to ride. The old woman. One should never ride an old bitch. I swore,


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though I had no one to whom to swear, for Rocinante doesn’t understand Spanish, that I would never reveal the reality God had just revealed to me about God, - the gossip, - to anyone. ‘The night fell. ‘As I walked along beside Rocinante, I thought about God for one more minute and forgot it. I closed my eyes, head drooping, like a person drunk for so long she no longer knows she’s drunk, and then, drunk, awoke to the world which lay before me.” (Acker, Don Quixote: 207.)

“Lost again. Where was I? Where am I? Mud road. Stopped car. Time is rhythm: the insect rhythm of a warm humid night, brain ripple, breathing, the drum in my temple – these are our faithful timekeepers….Maybe the only thing that hints at a sense of Time is rhythm; not the recurrent beats of the rhythm but the gap between two such beats, the gray gap between black beats; the Tender Interval.” (Vladimir Nabokov, ‘Ada, or Ardor: A Family Chronicle,’ cited in Ermath, Sequel to History: Postmodernism and the Crisis of Representational Time, 45.)

“Therein lies the difference between desire and drive: desire is grounded in it’s constitutive lack, while the drive circulates around a hole, a gap in the order of being. In other words, the circular movement of the drive obeys the weird logic of the curved space in which the shortest distance between two points is not a straight line, but a curve: the driver “knows” that the quickest way to realize its aim is to circulate around its goal-object.” (Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: 496.)

“Glinda, the Good Witch of the North: Are you a good witch, or a bad witch? Dorothy: I'm not a witch at all. I'm Dorothy Gale from Kansas. Glinda, the Good Witch of the North: Oh. Well, is that the witch? Dorothy: Who, Toto? Toto's my dog!” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“A little dog and children and respectabilities, and what shall I now receive in exchange for these things? Please do respond at once.”


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(Walser, Microscripts: 61.)

“No se puede vivir sin amar.” “One cannot live without loving.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano, 375.)

“The eyes and the senses are both mirror and water that reflect the form of the object, but phantasy is also speculation, which “imagines” the phantasms in the absence of the object. To know is to bend over a mirror where the world is reflected, to descry images reflected from spheres to sphere: the medieval man was always before a mirror, both when he looked around himself and when he surrendered to his own imagination. But loving is also necessarily a speculation, not so much because, as poets repeat, “gli occhi in prima generan l’amore” (the eyes first generate love), or because love, as Cavalcanti puts it in his canzone, “vien da veduta forma che s’intende” (comes from a seen form that is understood) (that is, from a form that, according to the process we have illustrated, penetrates through the external and internal senses until it becomes a phantasm or “intention” in the phantasmatic and memorial cells), but because medieval psychology—with an insight that yielded one of its most fertile legacies for Western culture—conceived of love as an essentially phantasmatic process, involving both imagination and memory in an assiduous, tormented circling around an image painted or reflected in the deepest self.” (Agamben, Stanzas: 83.)

“As regards artistic creation, what is of paramount importance is that imagination should be free of all constraints and should under no pretext let itself be channeled toward prescribed goals. To those who would urge us, whether it be today or tomorrow, to agree that art should conform to a discipline that we regard as radically incompatible with its nature, we give an absolute refusal and we reassert our deliberate intention of standing by the formula: complete freedom for art.” (Bréton, Rivera, and Trotsky, “Manifesto for an Independent Revolutionary Art,” in Caws, Manifesto: 475.)

“The dialectical image of ‘permanent revolution’ formulated by Trotsky in 1905-6 was based on the perception of a critical constellation between the Russian Revolution of 1905 and the


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Paris Commune of 1871. But this fleeting image that momentarily ‘flit[ted] by’ the historian/political actor was lost. The Russian labour movement of the time did not recognize itself as implicated by the Paris Commune: both the Mensheviks and the Bolsheviks – see Lenin’s writings of 1905 – explicitly rejected the reference to the Commune, which was criticized for having ‘confused the democratic with the proletarian revolution’. The joyous message the historian/militant brought ‘breathless’ from the past fell on deaf ears. It would be a dozen more years before, with Lenin’s ‘April Theses’ – which draw inspiration from the model of the Commune of 1871 – a new constellation could emerge, this time successfully.” (Löwy, Fire Alarm: 41.)

“The Smoking Dog (Le Chien qui fume): This was for me the typical name of one of these restaurants in Les Halles I was speaking of. The “torpor” is doubtless this time only mine: I won’t hide an intense need to escape, to take refuge in sleep in order to avoid cetain decisions I feared making. What had become of me until now was struggling (I think I have been sufficiently clear about this) with what I could still become. The comfort of every next day’s life was already defined; my concern not to interfere with the moral existence of the irreproachable being who had spent the time preceding this by my side, joined with the novelty and the irresistible strength of the attraction I was feeling (“the pro and the con”) kept me in the most painfully ambivalent state.” (Breton, Mad Love: 58-59.)

“A new and virulent form of utopianism has indeed afflicted the modern age, but its name is not Marxism. It is the crazed notion that a single global system known as the free market can impose itself on the most diverse cultures and economies and cure all of their ills. The purveyors of this totalitarian fantasy are not to be found hiding scar-faced and sinisterly soft-spoken in underground bunkers like James Bond villains. They are to be seen dining at upmarket Washington restaurants and strolling on Sussex estates. Theodor Adorno’s answer to the question of whether Marx was a utopian thinker is a decisive yes and no. He was, Adorno writes, an enemy of utopia for the sake of its realization.” (Eagleton, Why Marx Was Right: 105-106.)

“There was the observer who wrote the following in his notebook: “Progress, and all the phenomena that surround it, seems to participate intimately in that law of acceleration, general, cosmic, and centrifugal, which drags civilization to ‘maximum progress,’ so that after that comes


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the fall? That’s the problem: we cannot know if this society will destroy itself utterly or will simply encounter a sudden interruption and then a resumption of its forward motion.” And then: “The Sun would diminish its effect upon the Earth, provoking the beginning of a new ice age that could last at least ten thousand years.” Ten thousand years was a lot, and it was frightening. That’s what happens when someone chooses, for fear of the dark night, to live in the superficial light of day. Yes, the supernatural, divine or demonic, has been a temptation since Egypt, passing through the Middle Ages to the dimestore mysteries of today.” (Lispector, “Where you were at Night,” in Lispector, Soulstorm: 128.)

“The relief attempt of 9 January, conducted with great élan, was a pointless exercise doomed from the beginning. Kampfgruppe Wohler had pushed a salient to within six miles of Velikiye Luki. This salient was harassed by Russian fire at all hours and was barely tenable. The ground was frozen and could not be dug into; yet the snow cover was too sparse to allow for the making of snow walls or other means of protection. The frozen moors were devoid of natural cover and the scraggy woods that dotted the moors had been blown away by the fighting. […] At this moment almost twenty multi-ton vehicles were advancing in a tight wedge at full throttle. They churned out billowing wakes of dry dusty snow and as much resembled a flotilla of high-speed torpedo boats roaring across the snow-ocean to a single point. The Russians seeing them coming were too frightened to react. Soldiers in dung-colored overcoats threw their weapons aside and fled the impact point. The panzers hit without any great dash but with great violence nonetheless, mangling those who had fallen in their panic or who had remained frozen in their trenches, fouling the tank treads with these bodies. Sheaves of fire in wide sweeping arcs came from machine guns on the half-tracks and cut down fleeing men or men anywhere. The tank gunners though admonished to spare their ammunition could not restrain themselves from firing at targets everywhere, any more than they could restrain their own adrenaline. Destruction, wildness.” (Schneider, Siege: 368-371.)

“The soldier now has only the snowy pavement to stare at, with its yellowish path on the right and, to the left of that, a virgin surface marked by one solitary regular trail: two small-sized shoes at big stride intervals along the edge of the pavement, parallel to the gutter, and then, about four yards from the last street-lamp, coming together in a more trampled spot and turning at a right angle, in a small step, to rejoin the path and the narrower passage leading from the path to the door of the building.”


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(Robbe-Grillet, In the Labyrinth: 39.)

“The negation of nature (of animality) is what separates us from the concrete totality: it inserts us in the abstractions of a human order – where, like so many artful fairies, work, science and bureaucracy change us into abstract entities. But the embrace restores us, not to nature (which is itself, if it is not reintegrated, only a detached part), but rather to the totality in which man has his share by losing himself. For an embrace is not just a fall into the animal muck, but the anticipation of death, and of the putrefaction that follows.” (Georges Bataille, ‘The Object of Desire and the Totality of the Real,’ quoted in Ashley Tauchert, Against Transgression. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2008: 30.)

“You can go and throw that bone to another dog!’ The innkeeper retorted.’ As if I didn’t know how many beans make five, or where my own shoe pinches! Don’t you come trying to feed me with pap – I wasn’t born yesterday, by God! A fine thing it is for you to come telling me that everything in these books is stuff and nonsense, when they were all published with their proper licenses from the gentlemen on the Royal Council – as if those were the kind of people who’d allow a pack of lies to be printed, and all those battles and enchantments that fair turn you crazy!’ ‘I have already told you, my friend,’ replied the priest, ‘that this is only done to while away our idle moments; and just as in well-ordered societies such games as chess, tennis and billiards are permitted for the amusement of those who do not, should not and cannot work, so permission is also granted for the publication of such books, in the justified belief that there can’t be anybody so ignorant as to read them as if they were true histories…’” (Cervantes, Don Quixote, 293.)

“Back on the road, I made several stops to assure myself that no dogs have climbed into the back of the vehicle. I double-check, going through the inside of the van, curtains drawn, from the cab to the living compartment and the work area, I lift the blankets, the sleeping bag, the books, the notebooks, fling open the cabinets whose collection of cans has grown since my last purchase at the rest area, purchases I will continue to make during the remaining half of the summer. No dogs.” (Guyotat, Coma: 169-170.)


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“Metamorphosis, or symbol-formation; the origin of human culture. A laurel branch in the hand, a laurel wreath on the house, a laurel crown on the head; to purify and celebrate. Apollo after slaying the old dragon, or Roman legions entering the city in triumph. As in the Feast of Tabernacles; or Palm Sunday. The decoration, the mere display is poetry; making this thing, a double nature.” (Brown, Apocalypse – And/Or – Metamorphosis: 9.)

“I want to be female again.” “What does that mean?” I inquired of Bad Dog, who had been talking to me for several hours over beer and more beer. “Dogs and murderers.” In the Bald Head Pub. “Do we know who we are? Mustn’t we go back to our past? Where are the pirates of yesteryear?” Bad dog turned to the rest of the girls, who were more inebriated than the homeless around them, and to the cats, who were eating fish, and to the dead fish. They were all sprawled everywhere. Bad Dog was spewing out her rhetoric probably because she was not too dry to spread anything else. “Where are those pirates, all men, now?” (Kathy Acker, Pussy, King of the Pirates. New York, NY: Grove/Atlantic, 1996: 190.)

“But did you know that no angel with six wings is ever transformed?” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 193.)

“[…] if the caesura between the human and the animal passes first of all within man, then it is the very question of man—and of “humanism”—that must be posed in a new way. In our culture, man has always been thought of as the articulation and conjunction of a body and a soul, of a living thing and a logos, of a natural (or animal) element and a supernatural or social or divine element. We must learn instead to think of man as what results from the incongruity of these two elements, and investigate not the metaphysical mystery of conjunction, but rather the practical and political mystery of separation. What is man, if he is always the place—and, at he same time, the result—of ceaseless divisions and caesurae? It is more urgent to work on these divisions, to ask in what way—within man—has man bee separated from non-man, and the


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animal from the human, than it is to take positions on the great issues, on so-called human rights and values. And perhaps even the most luminous sphere of our relations with the divine depends, in some way, on that darker one which separates us from animals.” (Giorgio Agamben (Kevin Attell, Translator), The Open: Man and Animal. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2004:16.)

“Although neo-capitalism strives to attain a totally controlled consumption – not only in terms of the production of objects for consumption but also the forms of satisfaction obtained from them – it cannot sell happiness, however much it claims to. The result is a generalized sense of unrest and dissatisfaction, and a profound crisis of values that shows no sign of ending within the existing horizon of consumer capitalism. This, according to Lefebvre, is the Achilles heel of neo-capitalism: the anomie of desire, its social-extrasocial nature, resists social and intellectual systematizations attempting to reduce it to a distinct, classified need satisfied as such. Desire stifles in everyday life, but it dies in a specialized context; to organize desire its signifiers must be captured and signified, it must be stimulated by signs, by the sight or rather the action of undressing, forms of torment that recall those of desire. But desire refuses to be signified, because it creates its own signs as it arises – or simply does not arise; signs or symbols of desire can only provoke a parody of desire that is never more than a pretense of the real thing. (Lefebvre, 1984: 172.)

Hence, modernity contains within itself its own self-criticism.” (Michael E. Gardiner, Critiques of Everyday Life. London & New York, NY: Routledge, 2000: 96.)

“Horrors of horrors! “Reviews of the Amazons of Paris,” it is called. Oh formidable monstrosities! If the brave Amazons are like these, it will suffice to place them undressed in the first row of battle, and I am sure that not a soldier of the line, not a guardian of the peace, not a gendarme will hesitate a moment at the sight. But in the field, everyone, without exception, will flee in terrified haste, forgetting in their panic even to turn the butt ends of their rifles in the air. One of these Amazons—but why has my sympathy for the amateurs of collections led me into the description of these hideous creatures without clothing?—one of them…but no, I prefer leaving to your imagination those Himalayan masses of flesh and pyramids of bone, these Penthesileas of the Commune of Paris.” (Conservative journalist Catulle Mendès’s account quoted in Gullickson, Unruly Women of Paris: 103.)


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“The “New Woman”—as journalists dubbed the sexually independent woman—had, one reported, “ranged herself perversely with the forces of cultural anarchism and decay.” The misogyny of much fin-de-siecle art and literature—the portrayal of women as monsters, vampires, or abominable criminals and of men as their victims—was in many ways a male fanatasy of female potency (and of male impotence) which linked cultural dissolution and decay to female power.” (Carolyn J. Dean, The Self and Its Pleasures: Bataille, Lacan, and the History of the Decentered Subject. Ithaca and London: Cornell Univeresity Press, 1992: 59.)

“The Schmidt Report makes clear that interrogation taking the form of sexualized exploitation was conducted prior to the invasion of Iraq, and that the abuse perpetrated at Abu Ghraib was not an aberration. It is not implausible, therefore, to contend that the conduct of Lynndie England and Charles Graner, like that of [Maj. Gen. Geoffrey D. Miller, was wholly within the parameters of the techniques specified in the Field Manual 34-52. Indeed, Graner stated that when he ordered England to remove a prisoner from a cell using a leash, he was employing a legitimate cell-extraction technique; and England informed military investigators that forcing prisoners to crawl, while attached to dog leashes, was a ‘humiliation tactic’ intended to facilitate formal interrogations. In this regard, Graner and England were not unusual, for many of the personnel at Abu Ghraib believed that their actions were entirely consistent with established military doctrine.” (Timothy Kaufman-Osborn, “Gender Trouble at Abu Ghraib?”, quoted in Terell Carver and Samuel A. Chambers (editors), Judith Butler’s Precarious Politics: Critical Encounters. London and New York: Routledge, 2008: 214.)

“Property and authority always march in step, the one supporting the other, to keep humanity enslaved! What is property? Is it a natural right? Can it be right that one should eat while the other starves? No. Nature, when she created us, made us similar creatures, and a laborer’s stomach demands the same satisfactions as a financier’s. And yet, today, one class has appropriated everything, robbing the other class not just of sustenance of the body but also of the sustenance of the mind. Yes, in an age dubbed the age of progress and science, is it not painful to think that millions of minds thirsting for knowledge are denied the opportunity for improvement? How many children of the people, who might have made men of great value to humanity, will never know anything beyond the few rudiments drummed into them in primary school!”


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(Emile Henry, Letter to the Governor of the Conciergerie Prison, quoted in Guérin, No Gods, No Masters: 400.)

“If one obeyed one’s instincts, the path would sooner or later diverge further and further from the goal one was aiming to reach. Simply walking straight ahead cross-country was out of the question on account of the heather, which was woody and knee-deep, so that I had no choice but to keep to the crooked sandy tracks and to make mental notes of even the least significant features, even the slightest shift in perspective.” (W. G. Sebald, The Rings of Saturn, cited in John Beck, “Reading Room: Erosion and Sedimentation in Sebald’s Suffolk,” in J. Long and Anne Whitehead, W.G. Sebald: A Companion. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2004: 87.)

“Over the next hours, beginning with the seizure of Lecomte by the crowd, the failed military operation at Montmartre touched off a series of events which dramatically altered the stakes. By 10:30 a.m., when it appeared that the government’s calls to the bourgeois National Guard battalions had gone unheeded, Vinoy gave the order to evacuate the Right Bank of the Seine. […] At 5:00 p.m., some veterans of the June 1848 revolution recognized General ClémentThomas, dressed in civilian clothes. A moderate Republican, Clément-Thomas was, nonetheless, indelibly identified as one of the commanders responsible for the deaths of the workers in that revolution. Seized by the crowd, Clément-Thomas was taken to the same location where the National Guard had earlier escorted Lecomte, for his protection. That location was now besieged by a large crowd which included Lecomte’s own troops. In spite of the efforts of an overwhelmed National Guard contingent to fend off the crowd and to assure it that a court martial would be summoned to adjudicate their fates, the two generals were taken from their custodians and summarily executed by a crowd that included army troops formerly under Lecomte’s command.” (David Schafer, The Paris Commune: French Politics, Culture and Society at the Crossroads of the Revolutionary Tradition and Revolutionary Socialism. New York and London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007: 61-62.)

“Now he will leave these windswept unknown parts and go far away, back to his own kingdom in the river-bed, back to the magic spot where the spiders’ make their nests. Down there the pistol is buried, with that mysterious name; pee thirty eight. With this pistol Pin will become a partisan all on his own, with no one to twist his arm till it nearly breaks, no one to send him off to bury dead hawks so that a man and woman can roll about together among rhododendrons. He will do wonderful things, will Pin, always on his own; kill an officer, a


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captain, the captain who goes round with that bitch and spy of a sister. Then he will be respected by all the grown ups, and they will want him to handle a machine gun.” (Calvino, The Path to the Spiders’ Nests: 175-176.)

“They hit him in his lower back, and the bullet blew out of his stomach. He was still firing, Christ knows how, but he was. Danny’s mouth was open, and there was blood trickling out. There was blood absolutely everywhere. It was hot, and the stench of it was unmistakable, the cordite was heavy in the air, and the noise, which had not abated since they first opened fire, was deafening. Our ears were ringing from the blasts like we were wearing headphones.” (Luttrell, Lone Survivor: 224.)

“The name! My mother’s name! Quickly!” (Calvino, if on a winter’s night a traveler: 222.)

“Here there is a kind of question, let us still call it historical, whose conception, formation, gestation, and labor we are only catching a glimpse of today. I employ these words, I admit, with a glance toward those who, in a society from which I do not exclude myself, turn their eyes away when faced by the as yet unnamable which is proclaiming itself and which can do so, as is necessary whenever a birth is in the offing, only under the species of the non-species, in the formless, mute, infant, and terrifying form of monstrosity.” (Jacques Derrida, “Stucture, Sign, and Play,” cited in James Berger, After the End: Representations of PostApocalypse. Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, 1999: 110.)

“The Grand Hotel Home, Poor Heart […] the architect reminds his guests in the hotel brochure, when speaking of the hotel’s architectural prinicple of fortuitous juxtaposition, or what he called “correspondences”; it is the constructed world of the hotel itself that gives them meaning. Because the hotel has never wholly recovered its stability, frequently slipping back into the night, and thus vanishing around the quests who have entered it and who then wake to find themselves in quite ordinary hotels in other parts of town, the architect has incorporated darkness as a design feature, urging everyone to enter into the darker parts of the hotel and illuminate them with the intensity of their nostalgic


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longings. He calls the areas “harvest rooms,” or rooms of “re-collection,” believing darkness to be necessary to the illumining of memory and thus to the creation of light.” (Coover, The Grand Hotels: 60.)

“It is unclear to him exactly where he is. In the room, yes, but in what building is the room located? In a house? In a hospital? In a prison? He can’t remember how long he has been here or the nature of the circumstances that precipitated his removal to this place. Perhaps he has always been here; perhaps this is where he has lived since the day he was born. What he knows is that his heart is filled with an implacable sense of guilt. At the same time, he can’t escape the feeling that he is the victim of a terrible injustice.” (Auster, Travels in the Scriptorium: 2-3.)

“This brings us to the antinomies of the allegorical, the dialectical discussion of which is essential if the image of the Trauerspiel is to be evoked. Any person, any object, any relationship can mean absolutely anything else. With this possibility a destructive, but just verdict is passed on the profane world: it is characterized as a world in which the detail is of no great importance. But it will be unmistakably apparent, especially to anyone who it familiar with allegorical exegesis, that all of the things which are used to signify derive, from the very fact of their pointing to something else, a power which makes them appear no longer commensurable with profane things, which raises them into a higher plane, and which can, sanctify them. Considered in allegorical terms, then, the profane world is both elevated and devalued. This religious dialectic of content has its formal correlative in the dialectic of convention and expression. For allegory is both: convention and expression; and both are inherently contradictory.” (Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama: 175-176.)

The contrast between allegory and symbol is crucial here. Allegory is melancholic: as Freud pointed out, a melancholic treats an object, which is still here as already lost, for melancholy is pre-emptive mourning. So, in an allegoric approach, one looks at a busy market-place and sees in it already the ruins it will become—the ruins are the “truth” of the proud building we see. This is melancholy at its purest. (No wonder it was fashionable among the rich in the Romantic era to buld new houses partly as ruins, with bits of wall missing and so on.) Goethe, however, does the exact opposite, he sees (the potential for) future prosperity in the present pile of rubble. Crucial here is the rise of the symbol from ruin and repetition.”


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(Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: 491-492.)

“To transform and be transformed. Love and the lady transform him, making out of living man a green laurel, which through the frozen season still loses not its leaves.” (Brown, Apocalypse – And/Or – Metamorphosis: 10.)

“Professor, I think it’s time you give us a situation report,” I said, “I won’t ask for you why you thought this was an appropriate occasion for a beer bust.” “Scotch, my dear boy. Scotch,” he said, looking awkward without his usual tweeds. “And you’re right. Beer would have been totally inappropriate. I did it because you all were entirely too excited to pay proper attention to any report I might make, because we have already made all the physical preparations that we possibly can, and because we have days of subjective time to rationally decide what to do. There is no point in rushing things.” “Well, I think that there is,” I said. “None of us, including you, has ever managed a real war before, and I want all the time I can get. For starters, I want you to bring the rest of us up to speed with regards to what has been happening in the rest of the world.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 231.)

“He told us that in the northern regions where he fished there were two kinds of ice, blue and white: live and dead. The white was dead so could not climb. But the blue ice would come and calmly ravish an island of all her beauty of trees and moss, bleed her lichen to the rock, and leave her bare as the Scotsman’s door he had come to help mend. Or he would tell us of Arctic visions, of winds so strong they blew in the outgoing tide in which were found strange fish with green bones – When he came back in September he loved to sing: Oh you’ve got a long way to go You’ve got a long way to go Whether you travel by day or night And you haven’t a port or a starboards light If it’s west or eastward ho – The judge will tell you so – Or he would sing, in his curious jerky voice with its accents of the old English music hall, and which was more like talking:


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Farewell, farewell, my sailor boy This parting gives me pain…” (Lowry, Hear Us O Lord From Heaven Thy Dwelling Place: 246-247.)

“Poor things! Thinks our dreamer. And it is no wonder that he thinks of it! Look at these magic phantasms, which so enchantingly, so whimsically, so carelessly and freely group before him in such a magic, animated picture, in which the most prominent figure in the foreground is of course himself, our dreamer, in his precious person. See what varied adventures, what an endless swarm of ecstatic dreams. You ask, perhaps, what he is dreaming of. What ask that?— why, of everything…of the lot of the poet, first unrecognized, then crowned with laurels; of friendship with Hoffmann, St. Bartholomew’s Night, of Diana Vernon, of playing the hero at the taking of Kazan by Ivan Vassilyevitch, of Clara Mowbray, of Effie Deans, of the Council of the Prelates and Huss before them, of the rising of the dead in ‘Robert the Devil’ (do you remember the music, it smells of the churchyard!), of Minna and Brenda, of the battle of Berezina, of the reading of a poem at Countess V.D.’s, of Danton, of Cleopatra ei suoi amanti, of a little house in Kolomna, of a little home of one’s own and beside one a dear creature who listens to one on a winter’s evening, opening her little mouth and eyes as you are listening to me now, my angel…” (Fyodor Dostoyevsky (Constance Garnett, Translator), White Nights and Other Stories. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann Publishing, 1957: 180-181.)

“A sexual or charnel ethics would require that the angel and the body be found together. A world to construct or reconstruct…from the smallest to the greatest, from the most intimate to the most political, a genesis of love between the sexes would be still to come. A world to create or recreate in order that man and woman can again or finally cohabit, meet and sometimes remain in the same place.” (Elizabeth Grosz, Sexual Subversions: Three French Feminists. Sydney: Allen and Unwin, 1989: 161-162.)

“They exhumed a cadaver, they transported the pieces of an illustrious man to another place … This spectacle sickened us, a young man fainted …. Where had this illustrious man gone? Where was his glory, his virtues, his name? The illustrious man was something foul, undefined, hideous, something that spread a stench, something sickening to behold …. His glory? You see, he was treated like a worthless dog, for all these men had come there out of curiosity …. Impelled by the feeling that makes one man laugh at another’s torment.”


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(Jean-Paul Sartre, The Family Idiot: Volume I, 464-465.)

“Cold and growing colder. Just beyond the high gap in the mountains they stood and looked out over the great gulf to the south where the country as far as they could see was burned away, the blackened shapes of rock standing out of the shoals of ash and billows of ash rising up and blowing down country through the waste. The track of the dull sun moving unseen in the murk.” (McCarthy, The Road: 14.)

“The communist hypothesis remains the right hypothesis, as I have said, and I do not see any other. If this hypothesis should have to be abandoned, then it is not worth doing anything in the order of collective action. Without the perspective of communism, without this Idea, nothing in the historical and political future is of such a kind as to interest the philosopher. Each individual can pursue their private business, and we won’t mention it again. … But holding on to the Idea, the existence of the hypothesis, does not mean that its first form of presentation, focused on property and the state, must be maintained just as it is. In fact, what we are ascribed as a philosophical task, we could say even a duty, is to help a new modality of existence of the hypothesis to come into being. New in terms of the type of political experimentation to which this hypothesis could give rise.” (Alain Badiou quoted in Žižek, First As Tragedy, Then As Farce: 87.)

“Of course, one can always try to turn the tables and take the most stringent (and seemingly heterodox, heretic, mystic, iconoclastic, and antinomian) negation to be the paradoxical expression of the most consequent (and, perhaps, most orthodox, faithful, devout, and even iconic) affirmation. An “extreme acsesis toward any type of revealed faith, an extreme loyalty to the prohibition of images, far beyond what this once originally meant”—the last and seemingly least of the gestures of faith under the sign of the times (namely, of the worst)—just might amount to the sole “possibility” for faith to retain (or establish) its integrity for the last (or, perhaps, first) time.” (Hent de Vries (Geoffrey Hale, Translator), Minimal Theologies: Critiques of Secular Reason in Adorno and Levinas. Baltimore and London: The John Hopkins University Press, 2007: 614.)

“The Hebraic tradition of holy war is, in fact, based on this awareness that bravery in battle must spring from a heartfelt assurance of the availability of the requisite power to meet a


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warrior’s needs. Though the source of this power differs between the Hebraic and Hellenic traditions of warfare, being divine in the former case and personal in the latter, the Greek warrior must have just as much faith in his own power not to flinch in the face of danger as the Hebrew warrior does that God’s power will not fail him. True courage involves making just such a leap of faith that the source of one’s power is reliable, that one’s horse, lance, and heart will be stout enough to be victorious over the enemies without and within, the champions without that might reinforce the doubt within. Such a brave warrior will be powerful in battle and his air of selfconfidence can give assurance as well of his sexual potency, the two forms of power arising from the same necessary self-assurance. If the “prize of beauty” is justly to be awarded to the brave, it is because this quality can assure the potency that the male partner must contribute to a “happy pair.” (Lenora Leet, The Kabbalah of the Soul: The Transformative Psychology and Practices of Jewish Mysticism. Rochester: Inner Traditions, 2003: 245.)

“This is why the assurance from US Army command that no “direct orders” were issued to humiliate and torture the prisoners is ridiculous: of course they were not, since, as everyone who knows army life is aware, this is not how such things are done. There are no formal orders, nothing is written, there is just unofficial pressure, hints and directives are delivered in private, the way one share[s] a dirty secret … in being submitted to the humiliating tortures, the Iraqi prisoners were in effect initiated into American culture, they got the taste of its obscene underside which forms the necessary supplement to the public values of personal dignity, democracy, and freedom.” (Slavoj Žižek, Parallax View, in Jodi Dean, Žižek’s Politics. London and New York, NY: Routledge, 2006: 152.)

“Octavian appears to have made two major changes to his projected image after the siege of Perusia: not only did he advocate a limited clemency but he attempted to promote a more virile image of himself, advertising his sexual success with many women in order to combat his image as weak and frail and feminized. In competing with Antony, who possessed both martial and sexual prowess in popular lore, Octavian combined a more open display of sexual success with his military success at Perusia to project an image of virtus more in keeping with the Roman ideal. The link between sexual success and military glory is a commonplace in Latin literature and would easily have been accepted as related symbols of accomplishment by a Roman audience.” (Dowling, Clemency & Cruelty in the Roman World: 51-52.)


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“Alone in the bunker, fear cramped by neck muscles and tremors shook my head like seizures. Tears filled my eyes and I started to repeat the same question aloud, ‘What am I gonna do? What am I gonna do?’ Just then Wolverton staggered through the doorway. He was clearly in shock. Blood flowed from his right hand, which he was holding carefully with his left. A piece of shrapnel had nearly ripped off his middle finger, which now clung to his hand by a half-inch wide flap of skin. A fractured bone protruded through the translucent fat. I quickly wrapped his hand with a large bandage from a first aid kit and laid him down on the cot across from the radio desk. He stared up at the ceiling, panting and frightened. Though he had made his way back to the comm. Bunker to relieve me of radio duty, he was clearly in no condition to do so.” (Michael Archer, A Patch of Ground: Khe Sanh Remembered. Central Point OR: Hellgate Press, 2005: 84-85.)

“Ganz ruhig, sei ganz Ohr und vergiss nicht, du musst nicht, vorn sein in dieser Panzershlacht. Aber das gahrzeug hat seinen eigenen Antreib....Erledigt auch du, langsam plattgewalzt...machst du dich plappernd breit. Was du nie sagen würdest, sagt schon ein einziges Wort, ausgelöst, eine der Nieten wie Schwerkraft oder Bewusstein, Erinnerung oder Traum. Für sich sind sie nichts, aber für dich sind sie alles...Statt dessen nun konditionierte Liebe, konditionierte Wut, konditonierte Furcht, Gleiches mit Gleichem vergällt, er Weg des geringegsten Widerstands, Sprache...Was für ein Spielfeld für Kriespsychologen, Sanitater, Doktoren an vorderster Front...Dieses Ich, unter uns gesagt, eine tote Person, grosspurig zum Leben erweckt durch Verkehr, ist ein lausiger Trick. Hör ich mich an wie ein Typ, der weiss wo es langgeht?...ein Mamm ein Wort...ich fange zu sprechen an...und du fängst mit Versprechen an...Und schon ist es vorbei, das Schweigen geteilt, die Stille getilgt, die Stimmer in Fahr....Nicht mehr zu fassen...der Sprung in die Sprache...wo der Liquor austritt, das Serum der Träume.“ “Be calm, be all ears and don’t forget, you don’t have to be out front in this tank battle. But the vehicle has its own motor….Finished, flattened…you keep chattering away. What you’d never say is already said by a single word, drawn at random, one that comes up empty, like gravity or consciousness, memory or dream. In themselves they’re nothing, but for you they’re everything….In lieu of that now conditioned love, conditioned rage, conditioned fear, the same with the same gone sour, the path of least resistance, speech, language….what a playground for war psychologists, ambulance drivers, doctors of the avant-garde. This I (just between us, a dead person), awakened to life noisily through intercourse, is a lousy trick. Do I sound like a guy who know where it’s all going?...one man, one word, …I start to speak…and you misspeak by making promises….And that’s all she wrote, then the silence is divided, the must key deleted, the voice underway….No longer comprehensible…the plunge into language…where liquor escapes, the serum of dreams.”


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(Grübein cited in Monroe, “Avant-Garde Poetries after the Wall,” 101.)

“The Grandeur that was Rome -- Wait a moment, Professor McHugh said, raising two quiet claws. We mustn’t be led away by words, by sounds of words. We think of Rome, imperial, imperious, imperative. He extended elocutionary arms from frayed stained shirtcuffs, pausing: What was their civilization? Vast, I allow: but vile. Cloacae: sewers. The Jews in the wilderness and on the mountaintop said: It is meet to be here. Let us build an altar to Jehovah. The Roman, like the Englishman who follows in his footsteps, brought to every new shore on which he set foot (on our shore he never set it) only his cloacal obsession. He gazed about him in his toga and he said: It is meet to be here. Let us construct a water closet. -- Which they accordingly did do, Lenehan said. Our old ancient ancestors, as we read in the first chapter of Guinness’s were partial to the running stream. -- They were nature’s gentlemen, J.J. O’Malley murmured. But we have also Roman Law -- And Pontius Pilate is its prophet, Professor McHugh responded.” (James Joyce, Ulysses, cited Laporte, History of Shit: 57-58.)

“What methods do the bourgeois historians employ in falsifying the history of the Battle of Kursk? One of the methods resorted to most often is to hush up the Battle of Kursk, thus excluding it from the number of the most important developments of the Second World War and ignoring the big effect it had on the course and the outcome of the war in general. […] The hushing up of the Battle of Kursk in the analysis of the decisive battles of the Second World War does not mean mere disregard for this important event, nor is it expressive of the personal attitude of one or two insufficiently competent authors. It is a deliberate and wellthought-out trick of the bourgeois falsifiers of history which has a “theoretical” basis and definite practical consequences.[…] All these methods of falsification testify to the weakness, and not strength, of bourgeois military history and the historian’s subservience to monopoly capital and imperialist reaction. Although these writings look scientific, they are patently anti-Soviet and anti-communist and their sole aim is clearly to vilify and belittle the Soviet people’s heroism in the struggle against Nazi aggression.” (Pyotr Derevyanko and Boris Solovyov (G.P. Ivanov-Mumjiev, trans.), “The Battle of Kursk in Bourgeois Historiography,” Major-General Ivan Parotkin (editor-in-chief), The Battle of Kursk. Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1974: 295-311.)


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“Berganza: Scipio, my dear brother, I own that you are right in what you say, and that you are more perceptive and wise than I had imagined. From what you say, I am inclined to think and believe that everything that has happened to us up to now, and what we are experiencing now is a dream, and that we are, indeed, dogs. But because of this let us not fail to enjoy this gift of speech, and this excellence of human discourse for as long as we are able; and so don’t lose interest in listening to my account of what happened to me with the gypsies who hid me away in the cave.” (Cervantes, The Dialogue of the Dogs: 68.)

“The result: United States interest and policy versus the rising revolution of the submerged masses of the underdeveloped areas of the world. The logical development of the situation suggests further extensions of what is now occurring in South Vietnam: the confrontation of American wealth, influence, industrial power, and in the show-down, American arms, with guerrilla movements in every major arena of the United States interest. The study of guerrilla movements of the postwar era leads to the conclusion that the United States is slowly moving into a worldwide conflict which it cannot win.” (Taber, The War of the Flea: 174.)

“Merle: A message from the airforce, sir. In 10 minutes, they will be overhead to drop in reinforcements! Lt. Col. Pierre Raspeguy: We haven't got enough firepower left to cover them, they'll be slaughtered before they hit the ground, get back on the radio and warn them off. Merle: Right sir! [command bunker with radio blown up] Merle:[picking up broken pieces of radio] Poor devils, they'll be here in a few minutes! Lt. Col. Pierre Raspeguy: Well, what the hell can I do!” (Dialogue from the movie Lost Command. Columbia Pictures, 1966L IMDB. Starring Anthony Quinn as Lt. Col. Raspeguy.)


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“At one point, an insurgent spotter appears … I see him point us out to his buddies. Fuck him. I stand up on a chair, point back, and roar, “I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds” … you fuckers!” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 382-383.)

“Where is it? Where is the rat?” asked Frau Brigitte Frank. “It is in the trap,” said Frank laughing. “Achtung! Look out!” said the soldier aiming. A black tuft of tangled hair popped out of the hole dug under the wall; then two hands appeared and rested on the snow. It was a child. Another shot and again the bullet missed its mark by a few inches. The child’s head disappeared. “Hand me the rifle,” said Frank in an impatient voice. “You don’t know how to handle it.” He grabbed the rifle out of the soldier’s hands and took aim. It snowed silently.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 182.)

“And thus it was that the mighty Sam Slick, star-spangled Superhero and knuckle-rapping Yankee Peddler, lit upon the Western World in all his rugged strength and radiant beauty, expounding what the Disciple Rufus Choate called “the glittering and sounding generalities of natural right which make up the Declaration of Independence,” sharpening his wits on the hard flint of war and property speculation, and honing his first principles by skinning the savages and backwoods scavengers and picking the pockets of the thieving princes of Europe. He’s been committed ever since to propagating the Doctrine of Self-Determination and Free Will and bringing the Light of Reason to the benighted and superstitious nations of the earth, still groping clumsily out of the Dark Ages like breech births from a mother turned to stone, so neither he nor his kith can be easily overawed by this or that putative portent.” (Coover, The Public Burning: 8.)

“Everything about history that, from the very beginning, has been untimely, sorrowful, unsuccessful, is expressed in a face – or rather in a death’s head. And although such a thing


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lacks all “symbolic” freedom of expression, all classical proportions, all humanity – nevertheless, this is the form in which man’s subjection to nature is most obvious and it significantly gives rise not only to the enigmatic question of the nature of human existence as such, but also of the biographical historicity of the individual. This is the heart of the allegorical way of seeing, of the Baroque, secular explanation of history as the Passion of the world; its importance resides solely in the stations of its decline. The greater the significance, the greater the subjection to death, because death digs most deeply the jagged line of demarcation between physical nature and significance.” (Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama: 166.)

“The initial fulfillment of messianic hope in Christianity was political in nature. As consequence of events under Constantine, the old apocalyptic martyr eschatology was transformed into an imperial theology. This transposition can only be understood apocalyptically, even if historically speaking the early Christian apologists had already prepared the way. Those who with Christ had fought against the political demons and had suffered under them, began in the Roman empire after Constantine, with Christ to be victorious politically and to rule religiously. The Constantinian turn of events made of once persecuted Christianity, first the permitted, and then the dominant religion in the Roman Empire. From this there developed Byzantinism Tsarism in the east, and in the west the theo-political ideal of the Holy Empire which was supposed to endure to the end of time.” (Zathureczky, The Messianic Disruption of Trinitarian Theology: 3.)

“Do you know who will win the war? Perhaps you imagine that the Germans or the British or the Russians will win the war? The war will be won by us, by Lublia, Zoe, Marica; by me and all those who are like us. It will be won by whores.” “Shut up,” I said. “It will be won by whores,” repeated Susannah raising her voice. Then she broke into silent laughter and, finally, in a shaky voice, in the voice of a frightened child, asked, “Do you think that they will send us home?” “Why should they send you home?” I replied. “Are you afraid that they will send you to another house like this?” “Oh, no!” After twenty days of this work we are not fit for anything. I saw them – I saw the other ones.” She broke off and I noticed that her lips were trembling. That day she had to submit to forty-three soldiers and six officers. She laughed. She could no longer bear life. The


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physical exhaustion was worse than the disgust. […] They no longer appeared to be women. They were rags.. […] “Did they know that they would be shot?” asked Ilse. “They knew it. They trembled with fear. Oh, they knew it! Everybody knew it in Soroca.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 311-312.)

“The acting out -out of the metaphor of “pest control” stood unmistakably at the core of the gas chamber and crematorium industry in Auschwitz and other concentration camps. The expression Sonderbehandlung (special treatment) designated essentially the direct application of insect extermination procedures to human populations. The practical realization of this metaphoric operation went to the lengths of applying the most common “de-entifying” substance, Zyklon B, as if it was a matter of executing, in fanatical analogy, the chamber procedure that came to be used in many places. By virtue of their extreme pragmatism, the executor’s psychotic acting-out of a metaphor and thorough implementation of official measures went off together practically without a hitch.” (Sloterdijk, Terror From The Air: 43-44.)

“It is now possible to address the abyss, whose nearness Baudelaire felt throughout his life. Blanqui saw the eternity of the world and of human beings—the eversame—as guaranteed by the order of the stars. Baudelaire’s abyss is starless. Indeed his lyric poetry is the first stage in which the stars do not appear. The line “dont la lumière parle un langage connu” is the key to this poetry. In its destructive energy, not only does it break, through its allegorical conception, with the nature of poetic inspiration, and, through the heroic resolution with which it makes lyric poetry at home in the heart of reification, it also breaks with the nature of things. Its locus is the point where the nature of things is overwhelmed and transformed by the nature of human beings. Subsequent history has shown that, in his effort to bring this about, he was right not to rely on technological progress.” (Benjamin, “The Influence of Les Fleurs du mal,” quoted in Jennings, Benjamin, Selected Writings, Volume 4: 97.)

“”As for the women who were shot, they treated them almost like the poor Arabs of an insurgent tribe: after they had killed them, they stripped them, while they were still in their death throes, of part of their clothing. Sometimes they went even further, as at the foot of the faubourg Montmartre and in the place Vendôme, where some women were left naked and defiled on the


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sidewalks.” Lissagaray reported a similar scene in the eleventh arrondissement. Risking arrest for his support of the Commune, he walked cautiously toward the mairie on the twenty-eighth. There, he saw a dead woman and “a marine fusilier [who] was dividing the entrails that protruded from her with his bayonet.” (Gullickson, Unruly Women of Paris: 180.)

“…Many of the citizens were shot, clasping their hands for mercy. It was known, too, that a large proportion had wished us well. Helplessness ought to be respected in either sex, especially in those who have never done us wrong. It is unmanly for an officer to drive his sword through a trembling old man, or a soldier to blow out the brains of a wounded boy, as to strike a woman.” (Dalrymple, The Last Mughal: 388.)

“Interrogation Log of Detainee 063 Day 29, December 21 2002 2103: As we discussed taking the wrong path the discussion lead into the consequences for taking the wrong path, lead to the discussion of torture, beating and killing according to the Manchester document. At this point of the discussion I was forehead to forehead with the detainee and he stated he would rather be beaten with electrical wire than to have me constantly in his personal space… 2223: I began to engage closeness with the detainee. This really evoked strong emotions within the detainee. He attempted to move away from me by all means. He was laid out on the floor so I straddled him without putting my weight on him…The detainee began to pray loudly but this did not stop me from finishing informing the detainee about the al-Qaeda member, Qaed Salim Sinan al Harethi aka Abu Ali, that was killed by the CIA. When the linguist mentioned this killing she informed me that the detainee told her to get out of his face. She did not move she continued to interpret as usual….” (Sands, Torture Team: 110.)

“Now, you consider basanos the most reliable of all tests both in private and in public affairs. Wherever slaves and free men are present and facts have to be found, you do not use statements of the free witnesses, but you seek to discover the truth […] by applying basanos to the slaves. Quite properly, men of the jury, since witnesses have sometimes been found not to have given


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true evidence […], whereas no statements made as a result of basanos have ever been proved to be untrue.” (Demosthenes, quoted in duBois, Torture and Truth: 49-50.)

“Contemporary ethics is ‘a dog’s’ dinner [de la bouillie pour les chats]’. Its underlying impetus is in fact pragmatic compromise. Badiou is surely right: what was initially a sophisticated and theoretically demanding conception of ethics swiftly became a mixture of a bland ethics of the other and a doctrine of human rights whose essence is a reconstituted and basically sentimental brand of liberal humanism. By a strange, ironical twist whose determinations are ultimately political, the theoretical tradition threatens to leave us more or less where we started before structuralism. […] ‘Humanitarianism’ is the means by which free market capitalism, understood as what it cannot but be, a monstrous, unprincipled undertaking, sustains its own good conscience. Our obsession with ‘human rights’ provides the necessary ‘spiritual supplement’ to our ‘economic obsession’. The doctrine of rights is a means by which Capital seeks to ‘give itself meaning’ and dignity, to take on a serious and responsible air. Human rights are, if you like, an affectation of Capital.” (Andrew Gibson, Beckett and Badiou: The Pathos of Intermittency. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006: 92.)

“With the standing army and the police, those material instruments of central government power, done away with, the Commune turned to the task of smashing the spiritual instrument of oppression, the priestly power: it decreed Church and State separated and all churches expropriated insofar as they constituted proprietorial bodies. Priests were dispatched to the peaceful retreat of private life, there to live upon alms from the faithful, like their predecessors, the apostles. Every single educational establishment was thrown open to the people free of charge and simultaneously released from all Church or State interference. Thus, not only was education made accessible to all, but science itself was freed from shackles which class prejudices and governmental power had placed on it.” (Karl Marx, quoted in Daniel Guérin (Paul Sharkey, Translator), No Gods, No Masters: An Anthology of Anarchism. Oakland, CA: AK Press, 2005: 209.)

“WHILE THE OTHER GODS SLEPT, ZEUS REMAINED AWAKE THINKING HOW HE MIGHT AID THETIS AND HER SON ACHILLES.


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‘PERHAPS IF AGAMEMNON THOUGHT HE COULD TAKE THE CITY OF TROY…AH, YES, THAT WILL DECEIVE HIM.’ (ZEUS THOUGHT TO HIMSELF.) THEN ZEUS SUMMONED A DREAM. ‘GO DREAM, TO THE TENT OF AGAMEMNON, AND TELL HIM IF HE WILL LEAD HIS ARMY TO BATTLE, HE’LL TAKE THE CITY OF TROY.’ THE DREAM TOOK THE FORM OF NESTOR WHOM AGAMEMNON THOUGHT TO BE THE WISEST OF THE GREEKS, AND STOOD BY THE BEDSIDE OF THE KING AND SAID… ‘WHY DO YOU WASTE YOUR TIME IN SLEEP? ARM THE GREEKS AND LEAD THEM OUT TO BATTLE, FOR YOU’LL TAKE THE CITY OF TROY.’ THE KING BELIEVED THAT THIS FALSE DREAM WAS TRUE… ‘WE’RE GOING TO BATTLE AGAINST THE TROJANS. AT LAST, THIS LONG WAR IS GOING TO END.’” (Homer (Illustrated by Alex A. Blum), The Iliad. New York: Gilberton Company, 1966.)

“For the first time since 13 March, Torrett’s and Bigeard’s paratroopers were now able to fight the sort of action in which they excelled. Moving fast and aggressively despite the broken ground and heavy cover, they crossed streambeds and dykes, dodged around thick hedges and bamboo clumps, through tall scrub and tree lines as they vaulted forwards by squads and platoons, 1,200 men on a front of about a mile and a quarter. On the southern edge of Ban Ong Pet, 6th Colonial came up against stiff resistance from enemy trenches held by men of Division 308 (probably from Regiment 36,) and heavy AA machine guns firing in the ground role. Mortar and artillery support was called in, and after a time progress resumed.” (Windrow, The Last Valley: 448.)

“The positive link between serious mental illness and the enactment of heroic deeds was explained in a number of ways. The most generous school of thought argued that combat soldiers who began fearing that they would ‘crack’ under the strain would attempt to destroy the threat as quickly as possible and, in a fit of ‘desperate aggression’, often acted heroically. Other commentators were less kind. The most effective combatants, they argued, were hostile, emotionally insecure, unstable men who were acting out infantile fantasies of heroism—in other


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words, they were lucky that killing was socially approved in war because otherwise they would find themselves in prison. If they were not insecure, they were chronically hostile narcissists who strove to make the environment conform to their personality and who expressed their dissatisfaction with the outside world by aggressive and bizarre behaviour.” (Bourke, An Intimate History of Killing: 114.)

“I sometimes ask myself if it’s not a tale by Edgar Allan Poe or a daydream by Thomas de Quincey… But no—since I’ve tried out this lovely little Dum-Dum myself… I’ll tell you the story… I got hold of twelve Hindus and placed them…’ ‘Alive?’ ‘Naturally! The Emperor of Germany conducts his own ballistic experiments on corpses but you must admit that it’s absurd and quite unsatisfactory… I myself use people who aren’t only alive but also in perfect health and with robust constitutions. At least you can see what you’re doing and where you’re going… I’m no dreamer—I’m a scientist!’ ‘I beg your pardon, Captain. Please go on.’ ‘Well then—I place twelve Hindus one behind the other in a geometrically straight line and then I fired… ‘ ‘And then?’ interrupted Clara. ‘And then, my delightful little lady, the marvelous little Dum-Dum worked wonders. Of twelve Hindus not one remained standing! The bullets had gone through their twelve bodies which were afterwards no more than twelve heaps of mangled flesh and literally crushed bone…. It was really like magic! I would never have believed I’d be so wonderfully successful.’” (Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: 35.)

“At that time the earth tried many experiments in creation, producing creatures with strange forms and strange members.” (Lucretius quoted in Vollmann, All You Bright & Risen Angels: 225.)

“Squidskin is an active camoflauge system that is no thicker than ordinary cloth, but has millions of tiny air bags of different colors, which control the color of any portion of the cloth. If the brown bags are inflated and the others are left slack, the stuff is brown. There are automatic sensors and a computer that looks at the side of you that is away from the enemy and duplicates that pattern exacly on the side towards him. From his point of view, you can’t be told from your


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background, so you become almost invisible, except for a slight outline that is darned hard to spot. The problem is that it works from only one point of view.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 66.)

“At this very evening proved, there can be an absolutely blizzard-like production of images, independently of whether our attention is directed toward anyone or anything else. Whereas in our normal state free-floating images to which we pay no heed simply remain in the unconscious, under the influence of hashish images present themselves to us seemingly without our requiring our attention. Of course, this process may result in the production of images that are so extraordinary, so fleeting, and so rapidly generated that we can do nothing but gaze at them simply because of their beauty and singularity. For example, as I was listing to […], every word he uttered deprived me of a long journey; I have now acquired a certain skill in imitating—when my head is clear—the formulations that have arisen under the influence of the tremendous speed with which they arose and then vanished again; moreover, they were all on a very small scale. In the main, they were images of objects. Often, however, with strongly ornamental features. Objects easy to ornament are the best: walls, for instance, or vaulting, or certain plants. […] It was strange at the beginning, when I could just sense the approach of the trance and I compared objects to the instruments of an orchestra that was just tuning up before the start of the performance.” (Walter Benjamin, “Hashish, Beginning of March 1930,” in (edited by Howard Eiland and Michael W. Jennings), Walter Benjamin, Selected Readings: Volume 4, 1938-1940. Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press, 2003: 329.)

“Although his clothing was hardly elegant, with his dark pants, tie, and black felt hat, Émile Henry seemed like someone who might naturally be present there. At 8 P.M., as the café was slowly filling, he went in and took a small table to the right of the glass door that gave onto rue Saint-Lazare. He ordered a beer, and soon another, along with a cigar, and paid for them as the orchestra played. The musical program began at exactly 8:30, as it did each evening. It was to include seven pieces in the first set, to be followed by five violin solos (among them, pieces by Meyerbeer and Rossini). Several instrumental transcriptions of popular operatic arias were on offer. A short entr’acte, consisting of polkas, and a little Wagner were to follow. By 9 P.M., about 350 people had assembled in the Terminus. At 9:01, the small orchestra had just started to play the fifth piece in the first set, music from Daniel Auber’s opera Les diamants de la couronne.


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Émile found the music annoying, but, in any case, he had other plans. He took the bomb from his overcoat pocket, got up, and walked to the door, which a waiter closed behind him. But after taking a step or two outside, Émile turned back, lit the fuse (on the third try) with his cigar, opened the door, grabbed it with his left hand for support, and threw the bomb into the café, towards the orchestra.” (John Merriman, The Dynamite Club: How a Bomb in Fin-De-Siècle Paris Ignited the Age of Modern Terror. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009: 3.)

“The bomb had been set off just outside the investment bank. He saw shadowy footage on another screen, figures running at digital speed down a corridor, stutter-running, with readouts of tenths of seconds. It was surveillance coverage from cameras in the tower. The protesters were storming the building, busting through the crumpled entrance and commanding the elevators and hallways. The struggle resumed outside with the police turning fire hoses on the burning barricades and the protesters chanting anew, alive, restored to fearlessness and moral force.” (De Lillo, Cosmopolis: 94.)

“Did you hear that? said the Angel of Forgetting from upstairs,--Ah, that pretty little bird!” (Vollmann, The Atlas: 95.)

“In the film Boys Don’t Cry, it seems that transgender is both about identifying as a boy and wanting a girl, so it is a crossing over from being a girl to being a heterosexual boy. Brandon Teena identifies as a heterosexual boy, but we see several moments of disidentification as well, where the fantasy, where the fantasy breaks down and a tampon has to be located, used, and then discarded with no trace. His identification thus recommences, has to be reorchestrated in a daily way as a credible fantasy, one that compels belief. The girl lover seems not to know, but this is the not-knowing of fetishism, an uncertain ground of ertoicization. It remains unclear whether the girlfriend does not know, even when she claims that she does not, and it is unclear whether she knows even when she claims to know. Indeed, one of the most thrilling moments of the film is when the girlfriend, knowing, fully reengages the fantasy. And one of the most brittle moments takes place when the girlfriend, knowing, seems no longer to be able to enter the fantasy fully. The disavowal not only makes the fantasy possible, but strengthens it, and on occasion strengthens it to the point of being able to survive avowal.”


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(Butler, Undoing Gender: 142.)

“Now Anna had everything. She was a woman again. She did not need to be Doc. She could be loved instead. She learned that what she had been taught about right and wrong was created for a world that no longer existed and actually never did exist. She learned that a person positions herself on quicksand. She learned that every single individual has to rethink morality for themselves and at the same time come to a newly negotiated social agreement. That’s how Anna learned to be many people at once and live in different worlds of perception at the same time each day.” (Schulman, Empathy: 170.)

“’No comprendo,’ the Consul took the card and turned it over. ‘Blackstone’s my name. I am a writer, not an anarchist.’” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 370.)

“Most of the fighting occurred in the working class quarters. People ripped up paving stones and piled furniture, horse carts, empty casks, books, books, and sandbags to build barricades and defend their neighborhoods. Louise Michel recalled how Red flag at their head, the women…had their barricade at the place Blanche; Elisabeth Dmitrieff, Madame [Nathalie] Lemel…and [Beatrix] Excoffons were there. André Léo was at the Batignolles…I was at the barricade barring Clignancourt…Blanche Lefebvre came to see me there. I was able to offer her a cup of coffee…Blanche and I embraced, and she returned to her barricade.” Protecting their communities carried a cooperative, communal feeling, a last line of defense for manifesting their social ideals. Active women, fighting women, field cooks, and nurses returned to guard their own districts, as did many National Guardsmen, who according to Roger Gould, debilitated a coordinated defense against the Versailles army. The sense of community came down to its essence: la patrie, Paris, their neighborhoods.” (Carolyn J. Eichner, Surmounting the Barricades: Women in the Paris Commune. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2004: 34.)


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“It is not enough to be against a cause, one must be in the service of one. I do not think that revolutionary action is to be recognized by the massiveness of victorious street demonstrations. The fascists knew more successful ones. Revolutionary action is first of all the action of the isolated man who plans revolution not only in danger but also in the agony of his conscience….in the double clandestinity of the catacombs and of conscience. In the agony of conscience that risks making revolution impossible: for it is not only a question of seizing the evil-doer but also of not making the innocent suffer. In this also is to be found the difference in Jewish thought between the police and revolutionary politics.” (Emmanuel Levinas, Nine Talmudic Readings, quoted in Creston Davis, John Milbank, and Slavoj Žižek, Theology and the Political: The New Debate. Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2005: 120.)

“Never, never now will we move back From our barricades, our piles of stone; Beneath their clubs our blond skulls crack In a dawn that was meant for us alone.” (Arthur Rimbaud (Translated by Paul Schmidt), “Parisians War Cry,” quoted in Complete Works. New York, London, and Toronto: Harper Perennial, 1975: 63.)

“The passage in question is his brilliant defense of orgies. According to Fuchs, “the pleasure of orgiastic rites is among the most valuable aspects of culture. It is important to recognize that orgies are one of the things that distinguish us from the animals. In contrast to humans, animals do not practice orgies. When their food and hunger are satisfied, animals will turn away from the juiciest food and the clearest spring. Furthermore, the sexual drive of animals is generally restricted to specific and brief periods of the year. Things are quite different with human beings, and in particular with creative human beings. The latter simply have no knowledge of the concept of ‘enough.’” Fuch’s sexual-psychological observations draw their strength from thought processes in which he deals critically with traditional norms. This enables him to dispel certain petit-bourgeois illusions, such as nudism, which he rightly sees as a “revolution in narrow-mindedness,” Happily, human beings are not wild animals any longer, and we … like to have fantasy, even erotic fantasy, play its part in clothing. What we do not want, however, is the kind of social organization of humanity which degrades all this.” (Benjamin, Walter Benjamin, Selected Writings, Volume 3, 1935-1938: 279.)

“This city of ours will never be destroyed by the planning


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of Zeus, nor according to the wish of the immortal gods; such is she who, great hearted, mightily fathered, protects us, Pallas Athene, whose hands are stretched out over our heads. But the citizens themselves in their wildness are bent on destruction of their great city, and money is the compulsive cause. The leaders of the people are evil-minded. The next stage will be great suffering, recompense for their violent acts, for they do not know enough to restrain their greed and apportion orderly shares for all as if at a decorous feast.” (Solon of Athens, 6th Century B.C.E., cited in Lattimore, 20.)

“Impudent bitch!’ he shouts again: a hint of a smile lightly puckers the contours of the divine one’s cheeks. And here it is as though Diana, without even making a move, had already pierced him with the subtlest of her arrows: with one hand he tears him with the subtlest of her arrows: with one hand he tears away her silver bow, with the other he seizes by the wrist the hand with which the goddess was reaching for her quiver, and now begins to strike her on the ears with the bow; while she is lowering her head to avoid the bulls, her tunic falls, the belt comes undone, the quiver scatters on the ground, and at last he begins to thrash her buttocks, administering such a flogging as if to break the bow, the silver bow seeming to dance over Diana’s nether cheeks by itself […].” (Klossowski, Diana at Her Bath: 71-72.)

“[…] skin stretched down towards pubis -, laughing head, diving at whore-mistress, fingers spread pressing nipples stuck to cloth ; leaning on woman, spinning around on belly, pressing head between highs of whore, into layers of crumpled cloth ; whore-mistress, pulling back flaps of dungarees, seizing, milking hardened member over lips; soldier uncovering woman’s vulva ; shaving pubic fleece – sprouted since full moon -, slow, distracted, lips licking pollen hid in soiled embroidery of dress, eye, veiled in orgasm, fixed on […] raised heel straining, tense ; girlwhores lifting up soldiers unbuttoned against wall of saloon, sucking up, spitting out last drops of jissom onto fingers stained with henna, each eating globules from hands of others ; sliders dozing, heads weighing on shoulders : blond soldier with shoulders marked green pissing – interrupting masturbation – over knees of whore, whore’s free hand – other hand, splashed with jissom, pressing sticky member -, smeared with excrements reeking of jackal scraped from between boy’s buttocks, panting, from corner of soldier’s mouth to ear-lobes, fangs, jowls of jackal; / at top of street, on steps of small butcher’s shop painted red, children, wrapped tight in


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sackcloth, drowning brood of short-eared owls in pool of mixed-blood: female, perched on corner terrace of brothel, screeching – piercing […].” (Guyotat, eden eden eden: 35.)

“The situation in Leningrad is hopeless. It is impossible to live on 200 grams of bread. So many people are dying of hunger. All cats and dogs have been eaten and now they are starting on people. Human meat is being sold in the markets, while in the cemeteries bodies pile up like carcasses, without coffins.” (Secret NKVD file, January 12, 1942, quoted in Jones, Leningrad: 194.)

“The pale skinny boys assembling the round magazines of machine-guns, what color should they have been but dead white? Between the reflections of long white military columns writhing in the Neva and the black trickles of people dwindling day by day on the frozen streets Leningrad, only two zones were needed: ultra-field grey, as exemplified by the squat darkness above the treads of the Panzerkampfwagen (specifically, a Pskpfw-IIIF), and ice-grey, the color of those Stalinist banners which the Panzers overpassed, the banners which said: LIFE HAS BECOME MORE JOYFUL.” (Vollmann, Europe Central: 750.)

“The cold in the street is so intense that it grips him. He feels nevertheless that it is doing him good. But he would nee to be sitting down. He has to be content with leaning his back against the stone wall, his feet on the strip of fresh snow left between the row of houses and the yellowish path trampled by the passer-by. In the pocket of the coat his right hand feels the large, hard, smooth marble.” (Robbe-Grillet, In the Labyrinth: 120-121.)

“Raimundo Silva goes on consulting the pages, mentally following the itinerary , and a stealthy glance at the dog suddenly reminds him of the historian’s description of the horrors of famine endured by the beleaguered for months on end, neither dog nor cat survived, even the rats disappeared, but if this was so, then surely the man was right who said that a dog barked that serene dawn when the muezzin climbed the minaret to summon the faithful to morning prayers, and the man was mistaken who argued that because the dog was unclean, the Moors could no


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bear to have the animal in their sight, now let us concede that they banned dogs from their houses and deprived them of their caresses and feeding-bowls, but never from vast Islam, for truly, if we are capable of living in harmony with our own impurities, why should we so vehemently reject the impurities of others, in this case, of the canine species, therefore, much more innocent than those of humans, who so thoroughly abuse the term dog, an insult hurled right and left at enemies, by Christians abusing Moslems, by Moslems abusing Christians, and by both parties abusing Jews.” (Saramago, The History of the Siege of Lisbon: 60.)

“The Consul found himself claiming to see an obscure relation, apart from any verbal one, between Taxila and Tlaxcala itself: for when that great pupil of Aristotle’s – Yvonne – Alexander, arrived in Taxila, Taxila’s king, who likewise had seen in an alliance with a foreign conqueror, an excellent chance of undoing a rival, in this case not Moctzuema but the Paurave Chenab? Tlaxcala…The Consul was talking, like Sir Thomas Browne, of Archimedes, Moses, Achilles, Methuseleh, Charles V, and Pontius Pilate. The Consul was talking furthermore of Jesus Christ, or rather Yus Asaf who, according to the Kashmiri legend, was Christ – Christ, who had, after being taken down from the cross, wandered to Kashmir in search of the lost tribes of Israel, and died there, in Srinagar--. But there was a slight mistake. The Consul was not talking. Apparently not. The Consul had not uttered a single word. It was all an illusion, a whirling cerebral chaos, out of which, at last, at long last, at this very instant, emerged, rounded and complete, order: ‘The act of a madman or a drunkard, old bean,’ he said.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 309.)

“Despair: At this moment, in fact, immense, as great as the hope which had just been aroused, sinking so suddenly and which will be reborn. I feel myself losing some of my assurance in the presence of the sexual meaning of the calla lily and of the handbag, which, although it tires to hide behind the delirious ideas of grandeur—the stars, “God’s godmother” (?)—is no less clear. The “flask of salts” in question here is moreover, at present, the only element of the poem which has eluded my patience, my interpretative constancy. I still remain hostile to the fourth and fifth lines, almost entirely responsible for the disfavor in which I have held this “Sunflower.” I have nevertheless, as we shall see later, all too many reasons for admitting that what becomes apparent most slowly from the analysis is what is simplest and what must be accorded greatest value, not to think here is an essential element, which will become transparent to me some day.” (Breton, Mad Love: 58.)


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“The peculiarity of the organic monster is that s/he is both Same and Other. The monster is neither a total stranger nor completely familiar; s/he exists in an in-between zone. I would explain this as a paradox: the monstrous other is both luminal and structurally central to our perception of normal human subjectivity. The monster helps us to understand the paradox of ‘difference’ as a ubiquitous but perennially negative preoccupation.” (Rosi Braidotti, “Signs of Wonder and Traces of Doubt: On Teratology and Embodied Differences,” Gail Weiss, Body Images: Emodiment as Intercorporeality. New York and London: Routledge, 1999: 108.)

“I can’t afford to look back, and I can’t figure out how to look forward. In both directions, I may see a Medusa, and I already feel the danger of being turned into stone. Betwixt and between, I am stuck and time is stuck within me. Time used to open out, serene, shimmering with promise. If I wanted too hold a moment still, it was because I wanted to expand it, to get its fill. Now, time has no dimension, no extension backward or forward. I arrest the past, and I hold myself stiffly against the future; I want to stop the flow. As a punishment, I existed in the stasis of a perpetual present, the other side of “living in the present,” which is not eternity but a prison. I can’t throw a bridge between the present and the past, and therefore I can’t make time move.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 116-117.)

“…All the victim’s movements are designed to excite the rat’s fury which is soon increased even more by the intoxication of blood… It’s sublime, milady! ‘And then?’ asked Clara, who had paled slightly, in a sharp, shaky tone. ‘And then—since I see that you are in a hurry to know the end of this admirable and jovial story and then… Menaced by the red-hot rod and thanks to the excitement of a few convenient burns, the rat ends by finding an issue—a natural but how ignoble an issue, milady!’ ‘How horrible!’ cried Clara. ‘Ah, you see! You don’t have to say it! I’m proud of the interest you are taking in my torture… But wait… The rat penetrates into the man’s body, by the way you know, and enlarges it with his feet and teeth… Frantically he digs himself a burrow as though in the earth and he dies suffocated in it at the same time as the victim who, after an half hour of inexpressible, incomparable tortures, also ends by succumbing to a haemorrhage if not an excess of suffering or even a stroke brought on by unbearable fright. In any case, no matter what the final cause of death may be, believe me when I say that it is extremely beautiful to see!’”


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(Mirbeau, The Torture Garden: 112.)

“DEATH Mine irony depasseth all others! There are convulsions of delight at the funerals of kings, at the extermination of a whole people; and war is made with music, with plumes, with banners, with harness of gold, --with vast display of ceremony that my due of homage may be greater. LUST My rage equals thine. I also yell; I bite. I, too, have sweats of agony, and aspects cadaverous. DEATH It is I that make thee awful! Let us intertwine! Death laughs mockingly; Lust roars. They clasp each other about the waist, and chant alternatively: --I hasten the dissolution of matter! --I facilitate the dispersion of germs! --Thou dost destroy for my renovations! --Thous dost engender for my destructions! --Ever-active my power! --Fecund, my putrefaction! And their voices, whose rolling echoes fill the horizon, deepen and become so mighty that Anthony falls backward as if thunder-stricken. A shock from time to time causes him to reopen his eyes; and he perceives in the midst of the darkness a manner of monster before him. It is a skull, crowned with roses, dominating the torso of a woman nacrously white. Below, a shroud starred with specks of gold forms something like a tail; and the whole body undulates, after the fashion of a gigantic worm erect on end. The vision attenuates,--disappears.� (Flaubert, The Temptation of St. Anthony: 178.)


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“The monster always represents the disruption of categories, the destruction of boundaries, and the presence of impurities and so we need monsters and we need to recognize and celebrate our own monstrosities.” (Judith Halberstam, Skin Shows: Gothic Horror and the Technology of Monster, cited in Paula Ruth Gilbert, Violence and the Female Imagination: Quebec Women Writers Re-Frame Gender in North American Cultures. Montreal & Kingston, London, Ithaca: McGill-Queen’s Press, 2006: 314.)

“Strange, isn’t it, how among the dead all sex is intercrural - a matter of penises placed in the crevices of the body, but never the vagina. Clive would put his stubby dick beneath my armpit, in the join of my thighs, between my breasts, or even lever apart two dewlaps of belly to interpose what might be him. It was as if, in attempting these contortions – which enabled us to see the afflicted portions – we believed we might achieve the least little bit of friction, of touch. But there was nothing, nothing nuzzling nothing.” (Self, How The Dead Live: 254.)

““That is my recovered memory and the accounting I owed. An accounting for my loss of self, an accounting for the danger of reversion to the animal that hangs over me and hangs over the world, for the world conditions me and I the world; the danger is common to both. […] I am responsible for the gruesome murders that may once have been committed in this house, I am responsible for the gruesome murders that will multiply all about us, committed by others through none of my doing. For our selves are dispersed in the limitless, they lost their limits, and precisely because of our lack of community we have become a cold magical unity, coldly welded together in thoroughgoing irresponsibility and indifference, so that guilt and atonement alike are shared by all. And in its coldness the new blood of vengeance is magical yet just, since none who of those it strikes has ever rebelled against it. I thought I was running away from irresponsibility; in reality I was running from responsibility. That was my guilt. I bow to justice, and even if my self-criticism comes late, I am ready.” A. had concluded his confession.” (Broch, The Guiltless: 264-265.)

“It is no longer a question of a polarity capable of being embraced by a generic concept such as memory, even when it is split into the simple presence of a memory—Greek mnēmē—and recall, recollection—Greek anamnēsis. The troublesome question is the following: is a memory a sort of image, and if so, what sort? And if it should prove possible through appropriate eidetic


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analysis to account for the essential difference between images and memories, how could their interconnectedness, even their confusion, be explained not only on the level of language but on the level of actual experience? The problem is not new: Western philosophy inherited it from the Greeks and from their variations on the term eikōn. To be sure, we have stated repeatedly that imagination and memory have as a common trait the presence of the absent and as a differential trait, on the one hand, the bracketing of any positing reality and the vision of something unreal and, on the other, the positing of an earlier reality.” (Paul Ricoeur (Kathleen Blamey and David Pellauer, Translators), Memory, History, Forgetting. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 2006: 44.)

“But what about the small bird we have left sitting immoblized? We will return to her after other practices have been looked at. But as an intervening reassurance, it can be said that, of course, radiant ignition will be among the mental practices that will assist her in her flight. We know this from Keats, whose goldfinches hang in midair “to show their black and golden wings / Pausing upon their yellow flutterings.” We know it from Wordsworth, whose swan swims forward into the night under a shower of “silver light,” leaving a “moon-illumined wake.” We know it from Whitman, whose mockingbird yearns to discover the upward motion of his mate in a rising star: “O rising stars! / Perhaps the one I want so much will rise, will rise with some of you.” And we know it from Homer, whose Priam prays for a sign that Achilles will receive him with mercy. Zeus sends down an eagle with black wings “flashing.”” (Scarry, Dreaming by the Book: 88.)

“SCIENCE MUST BECOME ART Now we have yet to consider one condition which is more necessary for the knowledge of the conduct of War than for any other, which is, that it must pass completely into the mind and almost completely cease to be something objective. In almost all other arts and occupations of life the active agent can make use of truths which he has only learnt once, and in the spirit and sense of which he no longer lives, and which he extracts from dusty books. Even truths which he has in hand and uses daily may continue something external to himself. […] Knowledge must, by this complete assimilation with his own mind and life, be converted into real power. This is the reason why everything seems so easy with men distinguished in War, and why everything is ascribed to natural talent.” (Clausewitz, On War: 93-94.)


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“In his Anatomy of the Body of God, p.42, Frater Achad talks of the “Horrors of ‘the Abyss’ between Chesed and Binah,” but he states quite definitely that it is bridgeable by wisdom and understanding. As Kilgallin notes […], citing Frater Achad’s The Chalice of Ecstasy, man is given freedom of will to ally himself with the divine will, and should he make the mistake (as the Consul seems to have done) of attempting to turn the divine will to merely personal ends, he must fail, cut himself off from the universal current, and slowly and surely be lost in the abyss.” (Ackerly and Clipper, A Companion to Under the Volcano: 68.)

“Consequently, the concept of drive makes the alternative “either get burned by the Thing or maintain a safe distance” false: for a drive, the “Thing itself” is a circulation around the void (or, thather, hole). The drive as such is the death drive—not in the sense of longing for a universal negation, or the dissolution of all particularity, but, on the contrary, in the sense of the “spontaneous” life-flow of generation and corruption becoming “stuck” on some accidental particularity and circulating endlessly around it.” (Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: 499.)

“Slab told Brett, “When you see our lasers over there, shift your fire.” Brett replied, “Roger that.” Brett started shooting from the top of the rock, kneeling down, pouring M-60 fire on the bunker. The hot brass from spent 7.62 mm cartridges hit Slab in the face. He waited to come out firing from behind the rock. Brett was kneeling down but stood up to get a better downward angle. He leaned into the gun, firing at point-blank range. Slab came out from behind the rock with Kyle to assault the bunker. At that instant a frag grenade thrown from bunker #2 exploded in front of Brett and wounded his foot. Slab looked up as an enemy fighter rolled out of bunker #2 with an AK-47 and shot Brett twice in the legs. The bullets pierced the flesh in this thigh without striking the bone, and Brett tumbled off the rock, yelling, “I’m hit!” “Are you hit in the chest?” Slab called. If Brett was wounded there, the odds were even that the wound would be critical. Slab knew what he was doing. If he had to break contact under intense fire, he could not take anyone with him who could not move under his own power. Brett replied, “No, I’m hit in the legs.” For the second time, Slab thought, this is not working.” (MacPherson, Roberts Ridge: 109.)


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“And even if he were not sober now, by what fabulous stages, comparable indeed only to the paths and spheres of the Holy Cabbala itself, had he reached this stage again, touched briefly once before this morning, this stage at which alone he could, as she put it, ‘cope’, this precarious stage, so arduous to maintain, of being drunk in which alone he was sober!” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 89.)

“When the gasoline and the mossy pubic hair have finally burned up, the flame suddenly vanishes. I turn the spotlights back on. Lovely Joan now seems quite revived. Her eyes are wide open and gleaming, and she still fixes me with the same candid, amazed, and unattached, rather childish gaze, and still has that same naively sensual smile on her parted lips, filled with promises, immutable and conventional both. The horseshair has vanished between her thighs, entirely consumed, and has left in its place a whitish viscous substance which covers the pubic area with irregular trickles which I suppose are the remains of the glue, melted in the heat of the flames; I touch it cautiously with my forefinger which I then bring to the tip of my tongue: it has a pleasant taste, sweet and musky like that of certain tropical fruits.” (Alain Robbe-Grillet (Richard Howard, Translator), Project for a Revolution in New York. Chicago, IL: Dalkey Archive Press, 2012: 151-152.)

“This desert, khôral, ankhôral religion stands or falls with radical evil, which Derrida characterizes as “perjury, lying, telecommanded murder, commanded at a distance even when it violates and kills with the naked hand.” Violence always crosses the distance of the other who commands a halt, violates the space of the other, whether it is carried out with smart missiles or hand-made tools. The messianic is destroyed, violated, by radical evil, even as it is instituted, called into being by the other who calls for respect. Of the khôral, desert place of this religion without religion, of this desertified, atheistic messianicity without messianism, of this ground without ground, Derrida writes in conclusion: This place is unique. It is the One without name. It gives rise to (donne lieu), perhaps, but without the least generosity, neither divine nor human. Not even the dispersion of cinders is promised there, nor given death. What did you expect to find when you went into the desert?” (John D. Caputo, The Prayers and Tears of Jacques Derrida: Religion without Religion. Bloomington & Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1997: 158-159.)


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“Fevvers sighed. ‘So you see how this lovely creature truly believed herself to have tumbled so far from grace that she could never climb out of the Abyss and she regarded her pretty, spotless self with the utmost detestation. Nothing I could say would make her feel she was worth more than a farthing in the world’s exchange. She would say: “How I envy the poor being – “pointing to the Sleeping Beauty” – except for one thing: she dreams.” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 68.)

“He had to have this hope in order to tolerate nature. Hateful nature, anti-poetic, ogress swallowing up all spirituality. As ogrish as beauty is greedy. Poetry is a vision of the world obtained by an effort, sometimes exhausting, of the taut, buttressed will. Poetry is willful. It is not an abandonment, a free and gratuitous entry by the senses; it is not to be confused with sensuality, but rather, opposing it…” (Genet, Our Lady of the Flowers: 226.)

“That test—though admittedly a trivial affair—confirmed me in the belief that I was working in the right direction and that (unless some hideous wound or excruciating sickness joined the merry pallbearers) the process of dying by auto-dissolution afforded the greatest ecstasy known to man.” (Nabokov, The Original of Laura: 171.)

“Dorothy: [in the Wizard's Throne Room with the three others, having returned from the Witch's castle] Please, sir. We've done what you told us. We brought you the broomstick of the Wicked Witch of the West. We melted her! Wizard of Oz: Oh, you liquidated her, eh? Very resourceful.” (The Wizard of Oz, MGM, 1939, 1MDB)

“He who interprets by searching behind the phenomenal world for a world-in-itself which forms its foundation and support acts mistakenly, like someone who wants to find in the fiddle the reflection [Abbild] of a being which lies behind it, a being mirrored in the riddle, by which it lets itself be carried. Instead, the function of riddle-solving is to light up the riddle-Gestalt like


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lightning [blitzhaft] and to negate [and sublate, aufheben] it, not to persist behind the riddle and imitate it. Authentic [Echte] philosophic interpretation does not meet up with a fixed meaning that already lies, immobile, behind the question, but lights it up suddenly and momentarily [augenblicklich], and consumes it at the same time. Just as riddle-solving is constituted, in that the singular and dispersed elements of the question are brought into various groupings long enough for them to close together in a figure [Figur] out of which the solution springs forth, whole the question disappears—so philosophy has to bring its elements, which it receives from the sciences, into changing constellations, or, to say it with less astrological and scientifically more current expression, into changing trial combinations [Versuchsanordunungen], until they fall into a figure which becomes readable [lesbar] as an answer, while at the same time the question disappears. The task of philosophy is not to search for concealed and manifest [or present at hand, vorhandene] intentions of reality, but to interpret an intentionless reality.” (Theodor W. Adorno, “Die Aktualität der Philosophie,” quoted in de Vries, Minimal Theologies: 187.)

First, the Soviet authorities conscripted a half-million civilians, many of them women, to construct defense lines in depth around the city. As John Keegan notes in The Second World War, the workers dug 620 miles of earthworks, 420 miles of anti-tank ditches, built by 5,000 pillboxes, and strung 370 miles of barbed wire. Second, the Germans could not completely encircle the city. They tried but failed to force passage of the Neva River to join their Finnish allies, who stopped their advance north of Lake Ladoga and far short of German expectations. That left Lake Ladoga open, a veritable roadway which, when frozen over, allowed evacuees to leave the city and supplies and reinforcements to enter. Third, the German armored units taken from Army Group Center were recalled from Leningrad in the middle of an assault that was making good progress. So depleted were the remaining units that, once the 41st Panzer Group was gone, only twenty tanks were left for the final attack.” (Bruce Allen Watson, Sieges: From the Siege of Jerusalem to the Gulf War. Mechanicsburg, PA: STACKPOLE BOOKS, 2009: 9.)

“Some time before there had come to him the idea for a great picture. It was to be his first masterpiece, his salon picture when he should get to Paris. A British cavalryman and his horse, both dying of thirst and wounds, were to be lost on a Soudanese desert, and in the middle distance on a ridge of sand a lion should be drawing in upon them, crouched on his belly, his tail stiff, his lower jaw hanging. The melodrama of the old English “Home Book of Art” still influenced Vandover. He was in love with this idea for a picture and had determined to call it “The Last Enemy.” The effects he wished to produce were isolation and intense heat; as to the


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soldier, he was as yet undecided whether to represent him facing death resignedly, calmly, or grasping the barrel of his useless rifle, determined to fight to the last.” (Norris, Vandover and the Brute: 33.)

“The relief attempt of 9 January, conducted with great élan, was a pointless exercise doomed from the beginning. Kampfgruppe Wohler had pushed a salient to within six miles of Velikiye Luki. This salient was harassed by Russian fire at all hours and was barely tenable. The ground was frozen and could not be dug into; yet the snow cover was too sparse to allow for the making of snow walls or other means of protection. The frozen moors were devoid of natural cover and the scraggy woods that dotted the moors had been blown away by the fighting. […] At this moment almost twenty multi-ton vehicles were advancing in a tight wedge at full throttle. They churned out billowing wakes of dry dusty snow and as much resembled a flotilla of high-speed torpedo boats roaring across the snow-ocean to a single point. The Russians seeing them coming were too frightened to react. Soldiers in dun-colored overcoats threw their weapons aside and fled the impact point. The panzers hit without any great dash but with great violence nonetheless, mangling those who had fallen in their panic or who had remained frozen in their trenches, fouling the tank treads with these bodies. Sheaves of fire in wide sweeping arcs came from machine guns on the half-tracks and cut down fleeing men or men anywhere. The tank gunners though admonished to spare their ammunition could not restrain themselves from firing at targets everywhere, any more than they could restrain their own adrenaline. Destruction, wildness.” (Schneider, Siege: 368-371.)

“Die Hunde! Die Hunde!” Suddenly we heard the dull thud of an explosion; then another, and another. We saw two, three, five Panzers blow up, the steel plates flashing within a tall fountain of earth.” (Malaparte, Kaputt: 229.)

“[…] dogs pulling carcass out of veil of ashes, over beside soiled arse of youth covered by one bloody wing of vulture, articulation crushed against the hip by fangs of one-eyed bitch ; biting at knee covered with vulture’s membranous brain ; leaning on bone, straightening up,


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buttocks smeared with blood mixed with downy feathers ; planting white feather in hair, lifting rag over mouth, limping up slope, bitches, dogs devouring carcass enrobed in shit […].” (Guyotat, eden eden eden: 121-122.)

“One he stabbed with a bronze lance above the nipple, The other his heavy sword hacked at the collarbone, Right on the shoulder, cleaving the whole shoulder Clear of neck and back.” (Hughes, Helen of Troy: 211.)

“There now, Yvonne. Come along, darling…We’re almost home!’ ‘Yes.’ ’Strange-‘ the Consul said. A hideous pariah dog followed them in.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 68)

“The doctor unzipped Paco’s body bag—the sharp raw stench of Paco’s wounds, Paco’s bowels, rising fully in his face. He turned the bloody zippered flaps of the bag this way and that, reaching in to lift a scrap of cloth to inspect the festering wounds and the bone fragments that stuck through the skin. “Christ Jesus on a bloody fuckin’crutch,” he said under his breath, “how long was this guy left like this?—what’s his name?”” (Heinemann, Paco’s Story: 50.)


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“An infamous photograph of a “condemned man, “Fou-Tchou-Li” had been sentenced to be burnt alive for the killing of a Mongolian prince, but, finding the sentence “too cruel”, the Emperor commuted it to “slow death by Leng-Tch'e (cutting into pieces)… a torture [dating] from the Manchu dynasty (1644–1911).” As the victim was fed and smeared with opium, it was supposed that the pain was dulled. What was at stake was the spectacular nature of the torture, in which not only onlookers, but the victim himself was the witness of the slow dismemberment. It was a Chinese gaze that was addressed, and the photographer who took a record of the torture did it to show it to other Chinese.” The image was first used by Georges Bataille in his book The Tears of Eros. (Berenice Reynaud, “Cinema For/Against the Lure of Images,” The 23 rd Vancouver International Film Festival, September 23-October 8, 2004: http://archive.sensesofcinema.com/contents/festivals/05/34/vancouver2004.html)

“About this same time the Melians again captured another part of the Athenian lines where there were only a few of the garrison on guard. As a result of this, another force came out afterwards from Athens under the command of Philocrates, the son of Demeas. Siege operations were now carried on vigorously and, as there was also some treachery from inside, the Melians surrendered unconditionally to the Athenians, who put to death all the men of military age whom they took, and sold the women and children as slaves. Melos itself they took over for themselves, sending out later a colony of 500 men.” (Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War: 408.)

“DIVINE MISSIONARIES.—Even Socrates feels himself to be a divine missionary, but I am not certain whether we should not here detect a tincture of that Attic irony and fondness for jesting whereby this odious, arrogant conception would be toned down. He talks of the fact without unction—his images of the gadfly and the horse are simple and not sacerdotal. The real religious task which he has set himself—to test God in a hundred ways and see whether he spoke the truth—betrays a bold and free attitude, in which the missionary walked by the side of his God. This testing of God is one of the most subtle compromises between piety and free-thinking that has ever been devised. --Nowadays we do not even need this compromise any longer.” (Nietzsche, Human, All-Too-Human: 443-444.)

“Sometimes, why you try to peer too intensely into the gloom, your eyes make you see things which do not exist; Harry and Fleury presently began to have just this experience. If they had not known that it was possible they could have sworn that the distant melon beds were seething


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with moving shadows. Yet there was not question of an attack from that quarter across so much open ground. Their heads turned to each other uneasily, nevertheless; then they looked at the pensioners to see if they were noticing anything; they did not want to make fools of themselves in front of those veterans by ordering them to fire at shadows. But the pensioners sat there impassively; their eyes were too weak, in any case, to be much help in this situation. After some hesitation Harry, in a gruff and insecure tone, gave the order to light the portfire; the portfire, made of a mixture of brimstone, gunpowder and saltpeter, was sixteen inches long and would burn for fifteen minutes; that should be long enough to see them past this tricky twilight interval. ‘What on earth is that?’ It was the Padre’s voice floating eerily over the compound from the direction of the Cutcherry. ‘When war shall cease…in…all…the…world…’ concluded the Padre amid such a lugubrious howling of pariah dogs that in spite of their excitement the two young men experienced a sudden dread.” (Farrell, The Siege of Krishnapur: 143-144.)

“For the ship was sunk. All that could be seen was fingers of wood spread out and sticking up into, stinking up, the sky. Thus, the girls visited the dead pirates who lived under the water. Unnoticed, Ange disappeared in the direction her friend had gone. King Pussy interrupted the speech she was trying to give to mutter, “First ship I ever lost.” It was the first time she had ever been on a ship. Finally, Pussycat munched on a dead fish. Wearied beyond endurance, the pirate girls fell back into the world of mud.” (Acker, Pussy, King of the Pirates: 240-241.)

“An yet it is obvious that to be effective pain must attack the most active therefore the most vulnerable part of the central memory-image, the extremities once in touch with earth air fire and water, the soles that bear the whole weight of existence as man transmutes his structural archetypes from curled to lying to upright position and learns the shapes of time food light dark play by fingering breasts limbs balls cuddly animals.” (Brooke-Rose, The Foot, quoted in Lawrence, Techniques for Living: 13.)

“This woman,” gasps the doctor, “is still alive!”


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(Coover, The Public Burning: 516.)

“The bourgeois live on like specters threatening doom.” (Adorno, Minima Moralia: 34.)

“She will not fly. She has promised to die. What a clever corpse am I!” (Leonard Cohen, “Dead Song,” in Leonard Cohen: Selected Poems, 1956-1968. New York: The Viking Press, 1968: 57.)

“Interrogation Log of Detainee 063 Day 32, December 24, 2002 0001: Control entered booth, changed music playing, and hung binder of fitness models around detainee’s neck…. 1145: Detainee initially refused water so control poured a little on detainee’s head… 2100: The detainee is thinking a lot more on the themes when presented to him, seems to be on the verge of breaking…. Day 33, December 25 2002 0230: Interrogator poured one half bottle of water over detainee’s head and yelled that the detainee was not in control in the booth, that the interrogator decided everything that happened to him, but the detainee could take that power away by simply telling the truth. Detainee yelled back that the interrogator did this to him and the rest of the bottle was poured over the detainee’s head to illustrate the point that the interrogator was in control… 0300: Detainee offered water and refused. Interrogator poured some water on detainee’s head….Detainee started falling asleep so interrogator had detainee stand up for 30 minutes…. Detainee was subjected to white noise (music) waiting for his IVs to be completed…”


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(Sands, Torture Team: 130.)

“The definition of clemency is expanded so that it is not limited to the sparing of enemies in the recent civil war but so that it refers to the clement contest of Roman imperialism, the expansion of the state, and the incorporation of vast, happy, new subjects into the population of the Roman Empire. Augustus’s imagery created a link between clemency and the prosperity and success of the empire. Objects produced by both private and imperial patrons demonstrate Augustus extending clemency to all the new subjects of the empire, displaying the protection that Augustus and Rome offer, and focusing on the peace and clemency of Roman rule and not on the force that underlies it. The creation of the image of clementia as the cornerstone of Roman imperialism makes mercy the link between war and peace that integrates new members into the empire.” (Dowling, Clemency & Cruelty in the Roman World: 276.)

“The ironist—the person who has doubts about his own final vocabulary, how own moral identity, and perhaps his own sanity—desperately needs to talk to other people, needs this with the same urgency as people need to make love. He needs to do so because only conversation enables him to handle these doubts, to keep himself together, to keep his web of beliefs and desires coherent enough to enable him to act.” (Richard Rorty quoted in Roth, The Ironist’s Cage: 130.)

“The critical suppression of allegory is one legacy of romantic art theory that was inherited uncritically by modernism. Twentieth-century allegories – Kafka’s, for example, or Borge’s own – are rarely called allegories, but parables or fables; by the middle of the nineteenth century, however, Poe – who was not himself immune to allegory – could already accuse Hawthorne of “allegorizing,” of appending moral tags to otherwise innocent tales. The history of modernist painting is begun with Manet and Courbet, who persisted in painting “real allegories.” Even the most supportive of Courbet’s contemporaries (Proudhon and Champfleury) were perplexed by his allegorical bent; one was either a realist or an allegorist, they insisted, meaning that one was either modernist or historicist.” (Owens, Beyond Recognition: 58.)


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“I suggest that what follows from the feminist insight that embraced historically situated, mindful bodies as the site not just of first (maternal) birth but also of full life and all its projects, failed and achieved, is what human beings must learn to kill responsibly. And to be killed responsibly, yearning for the capacity to respond and ro recognize response, always with reasons but knowing there will never be sufficient reasons. We can never do without technique, without calculation, without reasons, but these practices will never take us into that kind of open where multispecies responsibility is at stake. For that open, we will not cease to require a forgiveness we cannot exact. I do not think we can nurture the living until we get better at facing killing. But also get better at dying instead of killing. Sometimes a “cure”for whatever kills us is just not enough reason to keep the killing machines going at the scale to which we (who?) have become accustomed.” (Harroway, When Species Meet: 81-82.)

“The prison and the shopping mall, the consumerism of preparedness and the militarization of everyday life, the selling of patriotism and the branding of the nation—these converge in contemporary American culture to maintain the notion of American innocence. The presence of the Hummer in the driveway masks the use of the Humvee in the war in Iraq, and the presence of the suburban big-box retailers allows for the erasure of the prison complex on the outskirts of town. The consumerism of comfort, whether it takes the form of kitsch or of preparedness chic, operates primarily to smooth over conflict and mask the consequences of the nation’s action. It is thus a primary aspect of the tourism of history, encouraging a tourist-consumerist relationship to the contemporary crisis of security in the United States. As the citizen-consumer has replaced the citizen, the maintenance of the innocence of that citizen is contingent on the effects of U.S. foreign policy and the U.S. prison industry being rendered invisible.” (Sturken, Tourists of History: 92.)

“He has now fully realized his vocation: forehead flattened, mouth stretched wide, jaws equipped with fangs: a dog himself! … between his teeth the crescent flows, slips, escapes and rises to the heights …, the slobber drowns the final insult … a dog for no reason? He barks—O glorious death of the stag! … when the luminous crescent rises over the mountain crests and assumes its place in the twilight’s emerald vault.” (Klossowski, Diana at Her Bath: 72.)


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“Torture and ‘strategic executions’ were particularly common in guerilla and counterrevolutionary work; the culture of the Special Forces explicitly presented themselves as containing the toughest, the most lawless, and the most aggressively masculine combatants; they frequently worked alone or in small cohesive groups where they were relatively independent from main command structures; and intergroup pride and intense dependency meant that any atrocities that did occur were less liable to be reported. Killing civilians would send a warning out to guerilla troops (and people suspected of helping them), that the troops would fight to win. It was ‘really a very good tactic if you stop to think about it’, retorted one officer in 1969 when asked his opinion about the My Lai atrocity, ‘if you scare people enough they will keep away from you…Aw, I’m not saying that I approve of the tactic…I think it’s an effective tactic.” (Bourke, An Intimate History of Killing: 188-189.)

“Closely connected with this perversion in the relationship between state and army is second the little-noticed but quite noteworthy fact that since the end of the First World War we almost automatically expect that no government, and no state or form of government, will be strong enough to survive a defeat in war. This development could be traced back into the nineteenth century when the Franco-Prussian War was followed by the change from the Second Empire to the Third Republic of France; and the Russian Revolution of 1905, following upon defeat in the Russo-Japanese War, certainly was an ominous sign of what lay in store for governments in case of a military defeat. However, that may be, a revolutionary change in government, either brought about by the people themselves, as after the First World War, or enforced from the outside by the victorious powers with the demand of unconditional surrender and the establishment of war trials, belongs today among the most certain consequences of defeat in war – short, of course, of total annihilation. In our context it is immaterial whether this state of affairs is due to a decisive weakening of government as such, to a loss of authority in the powers that be, or whether no state and no government, no matter how well established and trusted by its citizens, could withstand the unparalleled terror of violence unleashed by modern warfare upon the whole population. The truth is that even prior to the horror of nuclear warfare, wars had become politically, though not yet biologically, a matter of life and death. And this means that under conditions of modern warfare, that since the First World War, all governments have lived on borrowed time.” (Arendt, On Revolution: 15.)

“Today, now that the great State structures have entered into a process of dissolution and the emergency has, as Walter Benjamin foresaw, become the rule, the time is ripe to place the problem of the originary structure and limits of the form of the State in new perspective. The


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weakness of anarchist and Marxian critiques of the State was precisely to have not caught sight of this structure and thus to have quickly left the arcannum imperii aside, as if it had no substance outside of the simulacra and the ideologies invoked to justify it. But one ends up identifying with an enemy whose structure one does not understand, and the theory of the State (and in particular of the state of exception, which is to say, of the dictatorship of the proletariat as the transitional phase leading to the stateless society) is the reef on which the revolutions of our century have been shipwrecked.” (Agamben, Homo Sacer: 12.)

“For Benjamin, the French revolutionaries were able to engage in revolution precisely because they seized images from the past—from Rome. In making this argument, Benjamin engages in a polemic with the Marx of The Eighteenth Brumaire. Although it is true that for Marx the French Revolution did borrow a language from the past (and hence that is how he “understood the revolution”), Marx worried about these movements when people seem like they are revolutionizing but are borrowing from the past—it was precisely this borrowing that evidenced” the tradition of all the dead generations” weighing “like a nightmare on the brain of the living.” Marx suggested that we need to figure out how to mourn those losses and finally leave them in the past, to let “the dead bury their dead” in order to create a “poetry of the future.” The coming revolution, therefore, for Marx, would have performed its mourning already; it would not be trapped in the past any longer.” For Benjamin, however, contra Marx, the revolutionary, say Robespierre, rescues images from the past and resurrects them by imitating them: the French Revolutionaries are “Rome incarnate”; they bring Rome back form the dead. For Benjamin, the structure of revolutionary consciousness is necessarily melancholic; and conversely, melancholia contains within it a revolutionary kernel.” (Flatley, Affective Mapping: 74.)

“What Benjamin has in mind is the supremely profane insight that ethical universalism also has to take seriously the injustice that has already happened and that is seemingly irreversible; that there exists a solidarity of those born later with those who have preceded them, with all those whose bodily or personal integrity has been violated at the hands of other human beings; and that this solidarity can only be engendered and made effective by remembering. Here the liberating power of memory is supposed not to foster a dissolution of the power of the past over the present, as it was from Hegel down to Freud, but to contribute to the dissolution of guilt on the part of the present with respect to the past: ‘For every image of the past that is not recognized by the present as one of its concerns threatens to disappear irretrievably.’ (Thesis V)”


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(Jürgen Habermas (Translated by Frederick G. Lawrence), The Philosophical Discourse of Modernity: Twelve Lectures. Cambridge, Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 1990: 14-15.)

“No wonder that the standard political use of recognition as a key feature of Hegel’s social thought is limited to liberal readings of Hegel—Jameson has already noted that the ongoing focus on mutual recognition in such readings “reveals yet a third Hegel, alongside the Marxist and the fascist one, namely a ‘democratic’ or Habermasian Hegel”: the ontologically and politically “deflated” Hegel, the Hegel who celebrates bourgeois law and order as the summit of human development. Therein lies the common denominator of liberal readings of Hegel’s political thought (and not only the political thought): reciprocal recognition is the ultimate goal and at the same time the minimal presupposition of subjectivity, the immanent condition of the very fact of self-consciousness—“I am recognized, therefore I am.” (Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: 991.)

“During these cruel days we saw every imaginable form of heroism and cruelty. The insurgents massacred their prisoner, cutting off their hands and feet. Amongst a convoy of prisoners my company escorted to the Abbaye, there was one woman who had cut an officer’s throat with a kitchen knife, and a man whose arms were covered in blood up to his elbows after bathing his hands in the open stomach of a wounded garde mobile. On the barricades we saw dismembered heads and arms next to the red flag. […] Explain if you can these contradictions – heroism, ferocity, generosity and barbarism. The people display the same emotions as the melodramas and infamous newspapers which corrupt them with envy. Can anything be done with people who regard a riot as fun, ready to kill or be killed for senseless slogans? This last battle has given them a serious lesson, but the danger remains. The government has neither energy nor intelligence….I’ve nevere seen a city as distressed as Paris. A Cossack invasion would have been less horrible. I can’t write anymore, I’m collapsing from exhaustion.” (Letter from Prosper Mérimée to the Comtesse de Montijo, quoted in Price, Documents of the French Revolution of 1848: 92-93.)

“The Tiger of Michael Wittmann races into the enemy fire. I know his tactics during such situations, it is called: Straight Ahead! Never Stops! Get through and gain an open field of fire! All Panzers are hurtling into the steely inferno. They have to prevent the enemy attack, they have to destroy their schedule. Waldmüller and his grenadiers are right behind. The brave infantrymen follow their officers. An endless chain of bombers is approaching from the northwest, as town after town is being wiped out. There is only one answer: Get out into the


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open fields. We can observe the Canadians, too, are being dumped on by the American bomber fleet. The last waves of the 678 four-engined bombers, which had started out fly over the determinedly attacking Kampfgruppe Waldmüller without dropping a single bomb on the Panzers. The bombers are dropping on the targets as ordered, without taking notice of the changed situation. […] The grim duel of Panzer against tank is being conducted by the fighting vehicles of the 4th Canadian Armored Division and the Tigers of Michael Wittmann.” (Fey, Armored Battles of the Waffen-SS: 153.)

“Bataille referred to what Klossowski called Sade’s “crimes” as the violence he saw at the very foundation of civilization itself, although human beings persist in seeing it as outside of culture. Violence exercised or justified in the name of the state, such as capital punishment or war (forms of legal murder), is simply not perceived as violence; all violence manifested in rational or institutional structures is dissimulated. Violence obviously exists in so-called civilized cultures, but as a secret. Violence, according to Bataille, is essentially a “profound silence…which never declares it exists, and never affirms the right to exist, which exists without declaring it exists.” Sade’s work deconstructs this cultural fantasy that violence is outside or elsewhere because it gives violence a voice. In so doing, Sade’s work refuses what Bataille called the “trickery” of the state because it names violence, refuses to pretend that it is somehow outside of the proper limits of what we refer to as civilization, and insists, on the contrary, that violence structures all our political and social institutions.” (Carolyn Dean, The Self and Its Pleasures. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1992: 187.)

“On 18 March Colonel De Castries ordered that in future those killed in action were to be buried on the spot. Inevitable delays in burying the dead in the designated cemetery had caused a horrifying stench and infestation of flies, and the graveyard and nearby open-air morgue area had been hit by shellfire with repulsive consequences. In future those who died in and around the hospital would be interred in mass graves scooped out by a bulldozer. The casualty rate even at quiet times was perhaps ten killed and 40 wounded each day by random fire…” (Windrow, The Last Valley: 429.)

“None could match the strength of him and the pride of his courage. Thus the tale of my fathers who saw him there Breaking the massed battalions of armored Lydian horsemen, Swinging the ashwood spear on the range of the Hermos plain.


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Pallas Athene, the goddess of war, would have no fault with this stark heart in its strength, when at the first-line rush swift in the blood and staggered collision of armies in battle all through the raining shafts he fought out a bitter path. No man ever in the strong encounters of battle was braver Than he, when he went still in the gleaming light of the sun.” (Mimnémus of Cólophon, c. 7th century B.C.E., cited in Lattimore, 17.)

“King of Swamp Castle: Please! This is supposed to be a happy occasion. Let's not bicker and argue over who killed who.” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, IMDB.)

“a bow, and, as he was reaching out his arm

young lady’s hand drop something white, fold o his hat. The gentleman, retrieving lady, ceremoniously; she thanked and made a show of inhaling the with quantities of Spanish soup and almond milk so cold meat set in a after the” (torn text fragment from Gustave Flaubert, Madame Bovary.)

“In the eyes of men who fear streams (because they seem “unclean”), the bodies of erotic women, especially proletarian ones, becomes so much wet dirt. In Rudolf Herzog’s novel Comrades (Kameraden), the hero, Volker, is clearing out some young female workers, who, by ensconcing themselves on an estate à la Sythen Castle, have come too close to Volker’s beloved, Hanna Westerland: ‘Shrieking loudly, the half-naked women leaped onto the back of his neck. He felt their slippery bodies pressing against him, felt their wine fumes enveloping


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him, felt their nails digging into his flesh. His skull was pounding: “Defilement! Defilement!” As if trying to shake off vermin, he arched his back and sprung up. Three screams shatter the surrounding space. The whores tumbled off, three themselves onto their backs, and began bellowing like animals. There, behind his superior, stood Niklas, stroking his steel rod. “I was just combing the animals’ backsides, Colonel. All I used was this soul-warmer, Sir, and now look at them tearing up the ground.” Volker shook himself. He could still feel the slippery bodies and smell the wine fumes of the women. “Poor you, my Germany,” he managed to cough out. “You….you! Oh, no…” He saw Hanna Westerland’s tear-streaked face, saw her arms coming toward him, saw her willowy figure stretching out, seeking the comfort of her breast. “Don’t touch me!” he stammered. “Don’t touch me! Can’t you see I’ve been defiled from top to bottom? No, not you! Not like this!’ He was to wash himself first. Later, one of Volker’s men tells him he’d have been happy to do that “dirty work” himself.” (Klaus Theweleit (Translated by Stephen Conway), Male Fantasies, Volume 1: Women, Floods, Bodies, History. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1987: 421.)

“Calley had just ordered the murder of several dozen people when he discovered a soldier trying to force a woman to perform oral sex. He had hold of her hair to keep holding her to her knees…I ran right over. “Get on your goddamn pants,” I screamed. “Get over where you’re supposed to be!”…Why was I being saintly about it? Because: if a GI is getting a blow job, he isn’t doing his job. He isn’t destroying Communism…Our mission in Mylai wasn’t perverted though. It was simply, “Go and destroy it”…If a GI is getting again, he isn’t doing what we are paying him for. He isn’t combat effective. Calley was one of the few who did not just describe their behavior but also interpreted it – and in the process revealed something fundamental: the murdering in Xom Lang and Binh Tay was seen in many ways as ‘killing work.’” (Greiner, War Without Fronts: 221-222.)


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“Finally, the executioner, Samson, said to Monsieur Le Breton that there was no way or hope of succeeding, and told him to ask their Lordships if they wished him to have the prisoner cut into pieces. Monsieur Le Breton, who had come down from the town, order that renewed efforts be made, and this was done; but the horses gave up and one of those harnessed to the thighs fell to the ground. The confessors returned and spoke to him again. He said to them (I heard him): “Kiss me, gentlemen.” The parish priest of St. Paul’s did not dare to, so Monsieur de Marsilly slipped under the rope holding the left arm and kissed him on the forehead. The executioners gathered round and Damiens told them not to swear, to carry out their task and that he did not think ill of them; he begged them to pray to God for him, and asked the parish priest of St. Paul’s to pray for him at the first Mass.” (Foucault, Discipline and Punish: 5.)

“The avant-garde – which is the “cadre” that has led the fight for aesthetic truth, high standards, continuity with tradition, and against the utilitarian ethos during the past century – tends to make a virtue of its isolation and identify this with high culture by definition. But it is no longer as easy as it was in Baudelaire’s and Flaubert’s day to be so militant in one’s isolation. The political convulsions of our time have revealed more immediate threats to culture than those of bourgeois routine. And the bourgeois public, for its part, has through the medium of middlebrow culture begun to make conciliatory overtures to the avant-garde. The more ashamed philistinism becomes of itself the less benefit does culture get from an attitude whose main point is anti-philistinism, and the less meaning does such an attitude in itself retain.” (Clement Greenberg, Commentary, June and July 1953, cited in John O’ Brian, Clement Greenberg: The Collected Essays and Criticism, Volume 3: Affirmations and Refusals, 1950-1956. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1993: 139.)

“OLSON: No, I wanna talk. I mean, you wanna listen to…a poet? I mean, you know, like, a poet, when he’s alive, whether he talks or reads you his poems is the same thing. (SLAPS TABLE) VOICE: RIGHT! OLSON: Dig that! (APPLAUSE). And when he – and when he – and when he is made of three parts, his life and his poem, then by god, the earth belongs to us. And like – and what I think has happened is that that’s – wow, gee, hmm, one doesn’t like to claim things, but god, isn’t it exciting? I mean, at least I’m – I mean, I can, I feel like a kid. I’m in the presence of an event, which I don’t believe, myself.”


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(Charles Olson, cited in Libbie Rifkin, “Making it/New: Institutionalizing Postwar Avant-Gardes,” Poetics Today, 21.1, 2000: 129.)

“To the last glimmering of daylight succeeded, for the combatants, the illumination of these three fires. It seemed as if the heavens were bent on adding to the horror of the scene. The day had been fiercely hot; a storm soon arose accompanied by gusts of wind from the south-west, which blew down the smoke and strewed burning brands over the combatants. At one time Anseric began to resume the offensive with his best soldiers by the barricade of the chapel; then transporting himself to the opposite palisade, he debouched along the western rampart upon the assailants, who on this side tried to get around the stable building. The direction of the wind was most unfavourable to the Burgundians; they received full in their faces both the smoke and the sparks from the western building. The attack languished, despite the efforts of the duke to obtain a decided advantage, and to bring his united force to bear on one point. A pouring rain and fatigue stopped the combatants about nine o’clock in the evening.” (Viollet-Le-Duc, Annals of a Fortress: 204.)

“How can one not be a fatalist after this? Yet who really knows if he believes a thing or not? How often our beliefs are mere illusions or mental aberrations. I prefer to doubt everything. Such an attitude makes no difference to a man’s determination – on the contrary, as far as I am concerned, I always go more boldly forward when I know nothing of what lies ahead. After all, the worst you can do is die, and you’ve got to die some time.” (Lermontov, A Hero Of Our Time: 157.)

“Lead Singer Crucifee: [Dying on the cross] Cheer up, Brian. You know what they say: some things in life are bad. They can really make you mad. Other things just make you swear and curse. When you're chewing on life's gristle, don't grumble; give a whistle, and this'll help things turn out for the best. And... always look on the bright side of life...” (The Life of Brian, IMDB: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0079470/quotes)

“… A great stag, white as snow separated Actaeon from the deity, and watching the back of the goddess of the forests, the horned king enters his kingdom. But his reign is brief: the nymphs


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have welcomed him with jubilation; he approaches them without fear and they stroke him in a thousand ways, caressing him between the horns, on the forehead, along his neck and down his flanks and under the belly; he shakes his head and paws the ground in innocence, and once they’ve crowned him with laurel, they bring him before the goddess; two nymphs prepare the Huntress, still at rest, and pull her dress up to her breasts: Diana opens her naked thighs; the nymphs bring forward the stag, whose ardor they now have to contain somewhat; and the goddess of the forests at last receives the horned king. But the glorious death of the hero completes its nuptial course: no sooner has he caused the Queen to moan than his pack of hounds has already filled the grotto with their baying; they sink their fangs into his fur and as they are tearing him to pieces, the king bathes the Maiden’s dazzling body with his blood.” (Klossowski, Diana at Her Bath: 68.)

“Hardly before I’d realized I’d begun, I’d found myself plunging away in her wet and eager body, the piercing of her formidable hymen already just a memory, her sweet cry of Charming! Oh dear dear Charming! She’d seemed to have a thousand hands, a mouth everywhere at once, a glowing furnace between her thrashing thighs, I’d sucked at her heaving breasts, groped in her leaping buttocks, […]. Those damned Dwarfs are all right after all, they’re all right…” (Coover, “The Dead Queen”: 61.)

“The scope of memory is vast, […], in some way scary, with its depths, its endless adaptabilities—yet what are they but my own mind, my self? Then what can that self be, […]? What is my makeup? A divided one, shifting, fierce in scale. In memory alone there are uncountable expanses, hollows, caverns uncountably filled with uncountable things of all types—some of them representations, like those of sensible objects, some present without need for representation, like the tenets of the liberal arts; while others are there by some mysterious registration process, like the mind’s reactions, which the memory retains though the mind is no longer experiencing those reactions—still, if in the memory, how not in the mind? I rummage through all these things, darting this way and that, plunging down as far as I can go, and reaching no bottom.” (St. Augustine’s Confessions, quoted in Wills, Augustine’s Confessions: 104.)

“There’s another metaphor of post-modernism, or of The Persistence of My Father in All Things, that nudges into my consciousness now, although it happened in 1989 on my drive back to New York from Lac-Mégantic. I spent that night, before heading home, with an old friend in


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Littleton, New Hampshire. I ran in the morning down his country road, saw a moose, felt myself in touch with a kind of vital spirit in the universe (if you know what I mean). As I was getting ready to leave, we walked around his property. A small hillock behind his house was a tangle of vines, flowers, and small fruit.” (Blaise, I Had A Father: 201.)

“And now, he has been confounded by this amiable Vancouver, by its civility and its shaved lawns. What is it, exactly, that prevents him from becoming rich and successful? It doesn’t help to know that we’ve come to inhospitable conditions, and that my parents aren’t exactly starting out the race even, with the odds fair and square. So many people have made good; if you don’t, it appears that you have only yourself to blame. This—corrosive logic—is the other side of the New World dream, the seemingly self-inflicted nightmare in which you toss and turn in guteating guilt.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 128-129.)

“Once there was a house--! someone cries out; then, still breathing heavily, that person firmly exclaims: Once there was a house…., and finally manages to whisper (and can be heard, as the clamorous dissent dies away at last as though drifting off into other rooms): …Once there was a house… built of water… Have we heard this story before? If so, we have forgotten it.” (Coover, “Playing House”: 73.)

“There she waited, in her eternal well-occupied leisure, in a straight-backed chair of scrubbed pine, the fearful, archaic thing at the core of this unnatural helix. She had been waiting for me all of my life, I knew it the moment I saw her; but nothing in my life had hinted she might always have been there, with her menacing immobility of a Hindu statue. One glance assured me she was sacred.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 58.)

“A WOMAN bends over the corpse.


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Her long hair, uncut, envelops her from head to feet. She sheds tears so abundantly that her grief cannot be as that of the others, but more than human—infinite. Anthony dreams of the Mother of Jesus. She speaks: Thou didst emerge from the Orient, and didst take me, all trembling with dew, into thy arms, O Sun! Doves fluttered upon the azure of thy mantle; our kisses evoked low breezes among the foliage; and I abandoned myself wholly to thy love, delighting in the pleasure of my weakness. Alas! alas—Why didst thou depart, to run upon the mountains? A boar did wound thee at the time of the autumnal equinox! Thou are dead; and the fountains weep,--the trees bend down. The wind of winter whistles through the naked brushwood. My eyes are about to close, seeing that darkness covers thee! Now thou dwellest in the underworld near the mightiest of my rivals. O Perseophone, all that is beautiful descends to thee, never to return! (Flaubert, The Temptation of St. Anthony: 137.)

“Everything she saw was some thing. In her and in a horse the impression was the expression.” (Lispector, The Besieged City, quoted in Benjamin Moser, Why This World: A Biography of Clarice Lispector. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009: 181.)

“I would like that in her actions, in her talking and her smiling, she would appear to me like a gentle force of nature, righteous and incorruptible; an element of grace, force and purity that are in the air, in the light, in the plants, in the stones and in the landscape. For her to resemble certain animals; for her to hold within the innocence and the nobility of the dog or of the horse. The sweet sound of a sad barking would occasionally echo in her voice. And her head, resting on the pillow next to mine, would at times, in the uncertain light of dawn, seem to me like a dog’s head. Listening to her breathing by my side, or moving in the dark room, I would recognize in her breath the deep panting of a horse, her hair would wave over her shoulders like a mane; and in her laughter and in her crying would resound the echo of a loving neigh.” (Malparte, Woman Like Me: 2.)

“This was a question of what price people were prepared to pay for America’s wars and where were the limits of what was tolerable. In other words, seventy percent of the population which in the following years described the Vietnam War as wrong and morally reprehensible had


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made no pacifist about-turn. The victory which had eluded them was the only unacceptable factor and it was unforgivable that the nation’s leaders had apparently shown a lack of political decisiveness to give the fighting troops the necessary support. ‘Get out or win’: in that lay the core of the so-called ‘Vietnam syndrome’. There was no question of dignified reserve, but a refusal to accept defeat; no question of self-restraint, but an aversion to handicapping oneself militarily, politically and legally. Seen like that, the Vietnam syndrome was a perpetuation of the traditional ‘victory culture’. Anyone arguing from that vantage point could dismiss the Vietnam War as amoral, without raising the amorality of atrocities or the suffering of others. Telford Taylor was thinking of this normative self-obsession and insistence on the United States’ lofty special position about everything and everybody, when at the end of his book Nuremburg and Vietnam he wrote: ‘Somehow we failed ourselves to learn the lessons we undertook to teach at Nuremburg, and that failure is today’s American tragedy.” (Greiner, War Without Fronts: 355.)

“I insisted, some days later, on confronting the memory I had retained of this malevolent place with reality…To my great surprise, the enclosure that had contained the foxes was closed, not, as I had thought I saw it the first day, by a metallic trellis, but by a cement wall to high to permit me to see what was on the inside. Standing on the seats of their cars, people who had obviously driven here for that purpose seemed to be more fortunate. Seen close up, the house was not at all different from the image I had kept of it, except that at the window of the first floor there were three women, Parisian in bearing, rather pretty. On the door of the pen, in white letters on a black background, I read: “Change of ownership. No trespassing.” After some gymnastic effort, I managed to see that all the cages, with metallic trellises, were leaned against the wall which had been facing me first. It was as if, on July 20, this wall had been transparent for me. The yellow stream was the same. An engraved plaque restricted itself to the evocation of the fort’s activity: “Fort du Loch 1746-1862.” (Breton, Mad Love: 111.)

“Prostitution had been the metaphor par excellence for social contamination in the nineteenth century; it had represented an identifiable symbol of danger that had to be swept away by the indiscriminate roundups and incarceration. Now [Dr. Leon] Bizard’s location of deviants in all milieus paradoxically linked it to the dissolution of clear marks of criminality. In fact, as Alain Corbin has noted, as the maison close declined, new more open, and yet hidden forms of prostitution were made possible, in part because women could now go out alone without risking scandal. The representation of danger thus shifted because the prostitute was fast becoming Everywoman.”


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(Dean, The Self and Its Pleasures: 69.)

“We spent a fortnight in these bitter conditions, and it proved fatal for many of our group….We had two cases of pneumonia,….we had frozen limbs and ….a kind of gangrene from cold, which first attacks the exposed portion of the face, and then other parts of the body….Two soldiers, driven mad by despair, left the convoy one night, and lost themselves in the featureless immensity of the snow. Another very young soldier called for his mother, and cried for hours….Toward morning….a shot jolted us all awake. We found him and a short way off, where he had tried to put an end to his nightmare. But he had bungled his effort and didn’t die until the afternoon.” (Frtiz, Frontsoldaten: 112-113.)

“So you are the hero that everyone has been talking about! I should have known!” “I’m a hero all right. Hero first class, with thunderbolts and an oak leaf cluster!” “That’s wonderful,” she said, kissing me while shoving me into bed. “Now shut up.” I shut up, and it was a few hours before we got back to the classroom. “Now that we’re finally all back together, we can begin the orientation lecture,” the professor said. “You may call me Professor Cee. It will be at least two months before the division that we command will be even partly trained, and we will be using that time to train you, the division’s officers, as well. Your course of training will be quite extensive and will take eight years to complete. Upon satisfactory completion of the course, you will each be granted a Ph.D. in Military Science.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 204-295.)

“The Monster in the Night of the Labyrinth “Being attains the blinding flash in a tragic annihilation. Laughter only assumes its fullest impact on being at the moment when, in the fall that it unleashes, a representation of death is cynically recognized. It is not only the composition of elements that constitutes the incandescence of being, but its decomposition in its mortal form. The difference in levels that provoke common laughter—which opposes the lack of an absurd life to the plenitude of successful being—can be replaced by that which opposes the summit of imperative elevation to the dark abyss that obliterates all existence. Laughter is thus assumed by the totality of being. Renouncing the avaricious malice of the scapegoat, being itself, to the extent that it is the sum of


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existence at the limits of the night, is spasmodically shaken by the idea of the ground giving way beneath its feet. It is in universality (where, due to solitude, the possibility of facing death through war disappears) that the necessity of engaging in struggle, no longer with an equal group but with nothingness, becomes clear.” (Bataille, “The Labyrinth,” quoted in Bataille, Visions of Excess: 177.)

“SUBMISSION FOR THE AWARDING OF THE OAK LEAVES WITH SWORDS TO THE KNIGHT’S CROOSS. (Awarded on June 22, 1944, as the 71st. soldier) Leibstandarte SS-Obersturmführer Wittman received orders on June 12 to secure the left flank of the Korps near Villers-Bocage. It was to be expected that English tank forces that had broken through would advance to the south and southeast. […] Wittman, sitting in cover 200 meters south of the road with his Tiger, recognized an English tank unit followed by an English armored personnel carrier battalion. The situation required the fastest possible action. Wittmann did not have time to issue orders to his men in the distant positions. Instead, he pushed immediately, firing on the move, with his Panzer into the English column. This quick action initially broke up the enemy column. Wittmann destroyed four Sherman tanks from eighty meters, then moved his Tiger into a parallel to the column and drove along the column at ten to thirty meters, firing in the direction of the march. He was able, in a very short time period, to knock out fifteen heavy enemy tanks. Another six tanks were hit, and their crews forced to bail out. The accompanying battalion in armored carriers was almost completely destroyed. […] With the count of today, Wittmann has achieved a total number of victories over 138 enemy tanks and 132 enemy Paks with his Panzer. Signed: Dietrich SS-Obergruppenführer and Panzer-general of the Waffen-SS” (Fey, Armor Battles of the Waffen-SS: 102-103.)


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“When another soldier in Vietnam went berserk and massacred many of the enemy, he remembered feeling suffused with joy, ’I felt like a god, this power flowing through me…I was untouchable.’” (Bourke, An Intimate History of Killing: 31-32.)

“Along this narrow pathway must he come, I think.” (Friedrich Schiller, William Tell, paraphrased in Walser, Microscripts: 111.)

“…durchquere ich eine Leere, die lange vor mir bevölkert wurde, und ich weiss nicht, wohin…fluchend, rechnend, obszöne Witz reissend oder was sonst. Vorwärts, voran zum nachsten Unfall....nachher sah alles wieder ganz anders aus, implodierende Philosophien...dies Massen bewegungsunfähiger Technik, ein alter Stahlstich. Kaum ausgesprochen, sinke ich shon in mein Fahrzeug zuruck...knozentriert auf...das Rumoren unter den Fussen. In der nachrichtenflut badend, nehme ich die Schrecken verbrannter Erde neugrierig zur Kenntnis....diese wohlüberlegten Nichswärtsfahrtne.“ “…I cross through an emptiness that was populated long before me, and I don’t know where to…cursing, counting, making obscene jokes, whatever. Forward, on to the next accident….Afterwards everything looked completely different, imploding philosophies…masses of technology incapable of motion, an old steel wound. Barely expressed, I sink back into my vehicle….obsessed with …the banging beneath my feet…Awash in a flood of information, I become curiously aware of the horrors of scorched earth…those carefully planned trips to nowhere.” (Grübein cited in Monroe, “Avant-Garde Poetries after the Wall,” 103.)

“A tank, you see, had four gas inlets, and each one was filled with high octane. If any one of those were hit, the whole machine would go up … When that gas got hit, your options were, to say the least, limited. Oh, we had fire a extinguisher, but that was for overheated motors; it was useless for an unexploded tank. Now, there were two ways to get out. One via the turret; the other was through a trapdoor on the opposite side of the driver from the bow gun. Often the turrets would be inaccessible to anyone inside the tank; if the machine was hit badly, particularly if it was knocked on its side, the trapdoor would jam as well. At best you would have ninety seconds to get out that door; if it jammed, you would need fifty of those seconds to push it open. That would leave forty seconds for three men to squeeze out. Tick, tick, tick, boom! And what


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would happen if both the turret and the trapdoor were inoperative? What would happen is, that you would die! It takes twenty minutes for a medium tank to incinerate; and the flames to burn slowly so figure it takes ten minutes for a hearty man within to perish. You wouldn’t even be able to struggle, for chances are both exits would be sheeted with flame and smoke. You would sit, read Good Housekeeping and die like a dog.” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 313-314.)

“In the slackening thunder something was approaching with a noise that was not the rain. It was an animal of some sort, terrified by the storm, and whatever it might be – a deer, a horse, unmistakably it had hooves – it was approaching at a dead run, stampeding, plunging through the undergrowth: and now as the lightning crashed again and the thunder subsided she heard a protracted neigh becoming a scream almost human in its panic. Yvonne was aware that her knees were trembling. Calling out to Hugh she tried to turn, or order to climb back down the ladder, but felt her footing on the log give way: slipping, she tried to regain her balance, slipped again and pitched forward. One foot doubled under her with a sharp pain as she fell. The next moment attempting to rise she saw, by a brilliant flash of lightning, the riderless horse. It was plunging sideways not at her, and she saw its every detail, the jangling saddle sliding from its back, even the number seven branded on its rump. Again trying to rise she heard herself scream as the animal turned towards her and upon her. The sky was a sheet of white flame against which the trees and the poised rearing horse were in an instant pinioned – “ (Lowry, Under the Volcano, 335.)

“’I have seen her before!’ he told the Shaman eagerly when the Shaman caught up with him. ‘I know her very well!’ The Shaman thought it very likely, but not that it necessarily boded well, for his apprentice was well on the way to overtaking him and could already drum out the secrets of the spirits. ‘Woman, bird, star,’ babbled Walser. ‘Her name is – ‘” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 270.)

“I continue my walk along the Prospect, which now cannot be distinguished from the endless plain, deserted and frozen. There are no more walls as far as the eye can see, no mountains or hills; not a river or a lake or a sea: only a flat, grey expanse of ice, as compact as basalt. Renouncing things is less difficult than people believe: it’s all a matter of getting started. Once you’ve succeeded in dispensing with something you thought essential, you realize you can also


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do without something else, then without many other things. So here I am walking along this empty surface that is the world. There is a wind grazing the ground, dragging with flurries of fine snow the last residues of the vanished world […].” (Calvino, If on a winter’s night a traveler: 247-248.)

“A second girl, naked except for very high-heeled plastic black boots, walks onto the stage. Holds a black seemingly leather dildo at cunt lips. Moves dildo circularly a few times, hand holding dildo moves away from cunt, walks up to first girl who’s still in dog position and motioning at men. Together, they motion at men. Trying to get one. On the stage. Finally they get a young sausage who doesn’t seem to know what sex he is. He does whatever they say. Get the blubber down on his back. Wiggle off his light blue pants. Wearing white boxer shorts. They don’t look dirty. Kneeling girl puts the black leather dildo slightly up his asshole. Standing woman wiggles a white plastic dildo across his lips. Perhaps a comedy routine, for the man can’t get his cock up. Workers need decent working conditions […].” (Acker, In Memoriam to Identity: 245-246.)

“Willie Garza: Thought you were off the liquor. Liquor is bad. Weakens your character. How can a man like me trust a liar like you? I can't.” (Dialogue from The Naked City, quoted from IMDB.)

“And suddenly I remembered my name, Molloy. My name is Molloy, I cried, all of a sudden, now I remember. Nothing compelled me to give this information, but I gave it, hoping to please I suppose … Is it your mother’s name? said the sergeant, it must have been a sergeant. Molloy, I cried, my name is Molloy. Is that your mother’s name? What? I said. Your name is Molloy, said the sergeant. Yes, I said, now I remember. And your mother? Said the sergeant. I didn’t follow. Is your mother’s name Molloy too? Said the sergeant. I thought it over. Your mother, said the sergeant, is your mother’s -- Let me think! I cried.” (James Joyce, cited in Asja Szafraniec, Beckett, Derrida, and the Event of Literature. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2007: 47.)

“Horrors! I remember! Yes, I remember!”


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(Charles Baudelaire, (trans. by Louis Varése), Paris Spleen. New York: New Directions, 1970: 6.)

“This account of the relation between a negative moment of redemption, which is a mimesis of deadened life, and the glimpse of a possibility of reconciliation, is premised upon two moments. First, there is the recognition of life as deadened, a recognition that in itself only arises as the culmination of a heightened process of conceptually mediated self-reflection. This proceduces the second moment, which is experienced as a loss, as a realization of a different mode of relating to objectivity within the decay of experience itself. There is no outline of a reconciled state here, but only the trace of a different way of being outlined in the horror of a mimesis of deadened life.” (Morgan, Adorno’s Concept of Life: 123.)

“I hurt then and I still hurt today, but it is from the pain that I have gained an awareness of war’s real change. The real pain is not on the battlefield, it is on the land and the people afterwards. Nothing can extinguish the horror of war….As a small boy I looked upon war as glamorous, without pain, no one hurt, returning home a hero. That’s the way I went to Nam. The biggest realization that affected me…was when I realized that the person who I considered a monster, one to be destroyed, was another person, one who also had feelings, friends who got killed, a family who loved him….In that moment all my childhood dreams and myths lay shattered. The real enemy in war I feared was not my enemy, but myself….Blatant warfare and hatred—where death was the solution to a problem that did not exist….Now innocence was replaced by knowledge. How short, how deceitful, how surprising, life’s promises can be.” (Anonymous commentary from a Khe Sanh veteran quoted in Prados and Stubbe, Valley of Decision: 522-523.)

“In 1935 secret congressional hearings for air bases to launch a surpise attack on Canada, based on War Plan Red, were mistakenly published by the Government Printing Office and reported by the New York Times and the Toronto Globe. […] The United States would start the war, and even if Canada declared neutrality the United States would still invade and conquer it, planning to “hold in perpetuity” all territory gained and to abolish the Dominion government. The plan was approved in May 1930 by the Secretary of War and the Secretary of the Navy in expectation of “consequent suffering to the [Canadian] population and widespread destruction and devastation of the country.” In October 1934 the Secretaries approved the strategic bombing of Halifax, Montreal, and Quebec City “on as large a scale as practicable.” A second amendment, also approved at cabinet level, directed the U.S. Army to use poison gas from the


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outset as a supposedy “humanitarian” action that would cause Canada to surrender quickly, and thus save American lives.” (Jon Latimer, 1812: War with America. London and Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press, 2007: 407-408.)

“Pessimists see in the lethargic teenagers of the affluent American suburbs seeds of decay. But I am not so sure we are yet at the point of collapse. As long as Europe and America retain their adherence to the structures of constitutional government, capitalism, freedom of religious and political associations, free speech, and intellectual tolerance, then history teaches us that Westerners can still field in their hour of need brave, disciplined, and well-equipped soldiers who shall kill like none other on the planet. Our institutions, I think, if they do not erode entirely and are not overthrown, can survive periods of decadence brought on by our material success, eras when the entire critical notion of civic militarism seems bothersome to the enjoyment of material surfeit, and an age in which free speech is used to focus on our own imperfections without concerns for the ghastly nature of our enemies. Not all elements of the Western approach to warfare were always present in Europe. The fumes of Roman republicanism kept the empire going long after the ideal of a citizen soldier gave way to a mercenary army.” (Hanson, Carnage and Culture: 450.)

“All is reducible then, and to nothing, to “nothingness”: passing through my consciousness, the infinitely small crushes the infinitely vast and vice versa: those two movements cancel each other in their mutual crash. Words themselves, that bind everything, are caught, explode in that refusal, that disgust of the present-bound—so they must be transformed, saved from their fixity, from their un-depth: facing the real—itself not so—they are all liars: they must be shaken down, made to cry, since they are made for crying, singing: as for the “rest,” they do not express the slightest truth: only their assemblage allows them to get closer to the “real” (emptiness?)—and the true that touches us; so, perhaps numbers alone …? There are no such climaxes in times of deep depression, and if their memory returns to our wasted body and what remains of our mind, they seem like moments of inaccessible joy.” (Guyotat, Coma: 203-204.)

“[…] it is difficult to really accept that the long period of post-World-War-II progress and stability in the developed Western world is approaching its end. What makes the situation


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especially volatile is the fact that the disavowal is supplemented by its opposite, excessive panicky reactions: in the fragile domain of financial speculations, rumors can inflate or destroy the value of companies—sometimes even whole economies—in a matter of days. Since the capitalist economy has to borrow from the future, accumulating debts which will never be fully repaid, trust is a fundamental ingredient of the system—but this trust is inherently paradoxical and “irrational”: I trust that I can get access to my bank account at any time, but while this can hold for me individually, it cannot hold for the majority (if the majority effectively test the system and try to withdraw their money, the entire system will collapse). Crises are thus simulataneously disavowed and triggered out of nowhere, with no “real” causes. Can we even imagine, along these lines, the economic and social consequences of the collapse of the US dollar or the Euro?” (Žiźek, Less Than Nothing: 998.)

“The Ferris wheel came into view again, just the top, silently burning high on the hill, almost directly in front of him, then the trees rose up over it. The road, which was terrible and full of pot-holes, went steeply downhill here; he was approaching the little bridge over the barranca, the deep ravine. Half-way across the bridge he stopped; he lit a new cigarette from the one he’d been smoking, and leaned over the parapet, looking down. It was too dark to see the bottom, but: here was finality indeed, and cleavage! Quauhnahuac was like the times in this respect, wherever you turned the abyss was waiting for you round the corner. Dormitory for vultures and city Moloch! When Christ was being crucified, so ran the sea-borne, hieratic legend, the earth had opened all through this country, though the coincidence could hardly have impressed anyone then! It was on this bridge the Consul had once suggested to him he make a film about Atlantis. Yes, leaning over just like this, drunk but collected, coherent, a little mad, a little impatient - it was one of those occasions when the Consul had drunk himself sober – he had spoken to him about the spirit of the abyss, the god of storm, ‘huracán’, that ‘testified so suggestively to intercourse between opposite sides of the Atlantic’. Whatever he had meant.” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 21-22.)

“The purpose of maintaining a colony is to exploit it, economically or for some political end. The purpose of supporting one political or economic system against another is to derive some benefit from it. The purpose of governing within a state is to enjoy the fruits of political authority, whatever they may be. Yet in the modern era it is not possible to colonize or to govern profitably or to keep a subservient native government in power—in other words, to exploit—without the consent of the


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exploited. To kill them is self-defeating. To enslave them is, in the light of modern political and economic realities, impractical where it is not impossible. This is the dilemma that will confront American policymakers wherever they come to grips with anti-American guerilla movements. In the United States of the last century, the government was able to crush the rebellious North American Indian tribes—because the Indians had no political or economic leverage. They were an inconsequential minority, alien in every way to the burgeoning white population, and what was wanted was their lands—not their labor, their trade, or their good will. Consequently, they could be exterminated wholesale at no appreciable cost. Indeed, it was economically and politically desirable that this be done—and it was done.” (Taber, The War of the Flea: 177-178.)

“At about six in the evening I was on the hill leading down from Ménilmontant, almost opposite the Jolly Gardener, when some people walking in front of me suddenly stepped aside and I saw a Great Dane rushing at full tilt towards me, followed by a carriage. It saw me too late to be able to check its speed or change its course. […] It was nearly night when I regained consciousness. I was in the arms of two or three young men who told me what had happened. The Great Dane, unable to check its onrush, had run straight into my legs and its combined mass and speed had caused me to fall forward on my face. My upper jaw bearing the full weight of my body, had struck against the extremely bumpy cobblestones, and my fall had been all the more violent because I was on a downhill slope, so that my head finished up lower than my feet. The carriage to which the dog belonged was directly behind it and would have run right over me had not the coachman instantly reined up his horses. So much I learned from those who had picked me up and were still holding me when I came to. But what I felt at that moment was too remarkable to be passed over in silence. Night was coming on. I saw the sky, some stars, and a few leaves. This first sensation was a moment of delight. I was conscious of nothing else. In this instant I was being born again, and it seemed as if all I perceived was filled with my frail existence. Entirely taken up by the present, I could remember nothing; I had no distinct notion of myself as a person, nor had I the least idea of what had just happened to me. I did not know who I was, nor where I was; I felt neither pain, fear, nor anxiety. I watched my blood flowing as I might have watched a stream, without even thinking that the blood had anything to do with me. I felt throughout my whole being such a wonderful calm, that whenever I recall this feeling I can find nothing to compare with it in all the pleasures that stir our lives.” (Jean-Jacques Rousseau, “Reveries of the Solitary Walker,” quoted in Agamben, Infancy and History: 45-46.)


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“Let’s not hide the fact, this allegorical dog that becomes witness to the dignity of man is an other without alterity, without logos, without ethics, without the power to universalize maxims. It can witness to us only for us, being too other to be our brother or neighbor, not enough other to be wholly other, the nakedness of whose face dictates to us “Thou shalt not kill.” In other words, what we are reading through the unconscious of these exclamatory disavowals is the fact that it is not sufficient to subvert the traditional subject by making it a subject-host or hostage of the other in order to recognize in what continues to be called “the animal,” in the singular (“a transcendence in the animal!” “animal faith,” etc.), something other than a deprivation of humanity. The animal remains for Levinas what it will have been for the whole Cartesian-type tradition: a machine that doesn’t speak, that doesn’t have access to sense, that can at best imitate “signifiers without signified” […] a sort of monkey with “monkey talk,” precisely what the Nazis sought to reduce their Jewish prisoners to.” (Derrida, The Animal That Therefore I Am: 117.)

“The war, or rather war, was odd, he told himself a little inanely. But he knew what it meant. It was all covered with tedium and routine, regulations and procedure, and yet there was a naked and quivering heart to it which involved you deeply when you were thrust into it. All the deep dark urges of man, the sacrifices on the hilltop, and the churning lusts of the night and sleep, weren’t all of them contained in the shattering screaming burst of a shell, the man-made thunder and light?”

(Norman Mailer, The Naked and the Dead, Carter, The Final Frontier: 68.)

“They followed the edge of the trees in what he judged to be a southwesterly direction. He looked for patterns of stars he had seen earlier, while crossing the plain, constellations whose names he didn’t know but which he had studied carefully. But there was too much cloud cover now; he couldn’t find any markers up in the sky. They kept on going regardless, inertia, momentum, pushing them along at the edge of trees. It seemed it should be near dawn but they trudged on for a long time still in the blackness of night.” (Schneider, The Siege: 414.)

“Another step of the ritual was to ascend with closed eyes. “Step, step, step,” came my mother’s voice as she led me up and sure enough, the surface of the next tread would receive the blind child’s confident foot; all one had to do was lift it a little higher than usual, so as to avoid stubbing one’s toe against the riser. This slow, somewhat somnambulistic ascension in self-en


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gendered darkness held obvious delights. The keenest of them was not knowing when the last stop would come. At the top of the stairs, one’s foot would be automatically lifted to the deceptive call of “Step,” and then, with a momentary sense of exquisite panic, with a wild contraction of muscles, would sink into the phantasm of a step, padded, as it were, with the infinitely elastic stuff of its own nonexistence.” (Nabokov, Speak, Memory: 83-84.)

“Pin is sitting all alone on a mountain crest; sheer away at his feet drop rocky slopes furry with bushes, and then valley folding into valley down to where the black rivers coil in the depths. Long wisps of cloud are moving up the slopes and blotting out the scattered villages and trees.” (Italo Calvino, (Archibald Colquhoun, Translator), The Path to the Spider’s Nests. New York, NY: Ecco Press, 2000: 175.)

“I feel so far away from them, on the top of this hill. It seems as though I belong to another species. They come out of their offices after their day of work, they look at the houses and the the squares with satisfaction, they think it is their city, a good, solid, bourgeois city. They aren’t afraid they feel at home. All they have ever seen is trained water running from taps, light which fills bulbs when you turn on the switch, half-breed bastard trees held up with crutches. They have proof, a hundred times a day, that everything happens mechanically, that the world obeys fixed, unchangeable laws.” (Sartre, Nausea: 158.)

“There was a thick wood ahead, so I lay flat on the saddle and gave myself in the hands of Allah. For the first time in my life I insulted my horse with a touch of the whip. He went like a bird between the branches. Sharp thorns tore my clothes, dead elm branches hit my face. My horse leaped over tree-stumps and charged its way through bushes. I should have left him as we came into the wood and taken cover among the trees on foot, but I couldn’t bear to part with him – and the Prophet repaid me! A few bullets sang over my head and I heard the Cossacks running after me, on foot now. Suddenly before me there was a deep ravine.” (Lermontov, A Hero Of Our Time: 14.)


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“But, although we trudged long and far, we stayed in the forest, seemed to get no nearer to the railway track than when we’d started out, and the Escapee adopts a worried look. Has he taken a wrong turning, out here, where there are no turnings? Or, rather, in this trackless waste, at any single point one stands at an imaginary crossroads, at the confluence of all directions, one of which might be the right direction. And on we go, for fear of freezing to the spot if we stand still.” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 245.)

“HAMM: Give me the dog. CLOV: Quiet! HAMM (angrily): Give me the dog! (Clov drops the telescope, clasps his hands to his head. Pause. He gets down precipitously, looks for the dog, sees it, picks it up, hastens towards Hamm and strikes him violently on the head with the dog.) CLOV: There’s your dog for you! (The dog falls to the ground. Pause.) HAMM: He hit me! CLOV: You drive me mad, I’m mad! HAMM: If you must hit me, hit me with the axe. (Pause.) Or with the gaffe, hit me with the gaffe. Not with the dog. With the gaffe. Or with the axe. (Clov picks up the dog and gives it to Hamm who takes it in his arms.) (Beckett, Endgame: 76-77.)

“How does newness come into the world? How is it born? Of what fusions, translations, conjoining is it made? How does it survive, extreme and dangerous as it is? What compromises, what deals, what betrayals of its secret nature must it make to stave off the wrecking crew, the exterminating angel, the guillotine?


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Is birth always a fall? Do angels have wings? Can men fly?” (Rushdie, The Satanic Verses: 8.)

“All four of us just kept banging away, cutting ‘em down, watching them fall, slamming a new magazine into the breech, somehow holding them at bay. But this was impossible. We had to give up this high ground, and I had to get close enough to Mikey to agree on a strategy, hopefully to save our lives. I started to move, but Mikey, like the brilliant officer he was, had appreciated the situation and already called it. “Fall back!” Fall back! More like fall off -- the freakin’ mountain, that is; a nearly sheer drop, right behind us, God knows how far down. But an order’s an order. I grabbed my gear and took a sideways step, trying to zigzag, down the gradient. But the gravity made the decision for me, and I fell headlong down the mountain, completing a full forward flip and somehow landing on my back, still going fast, heels flailing for a foothold.” (Luttrell, Lone Survivor: 214.)

“’The sublime is the ignoble above.’ This sentence—which is nonsense if taken literally, proves to us in any case that the elusively evoked symmetry does not exist. Certainly, there is an “above” since we talk about a “below”; furthermore, we have seen that Flaubert’s mental space is structured according to the absolute vertical. Yet we find nothing above but the bitterest disillusionment: above, the sublime, the object of the most legitimate desire, is revealed to be a diabolical mirage; he who wants to be an angel becomes a beast; he who aspires toward the “noble” region, missing a firm foothold, trips and falls, breaking his neck amid laughter. Suffered, this fall is merely ridiculous; it will be ignoble and sublime if the victim knows how to transform it into a spectacular plunge into the mud. Ignoble—it is the radicalization of baseness, of cowardice, of sadism, of a flabby and cruel cynicism; it is the deliberate choice to be a subman out of a hatred of the human condition, the decision to portray great emotions in order to ridicule them one by one, either by showing that they are impossible—and grotesque in their serene seriousness—or by exposing the stupidity and egotism concealed by their boasted idealism.” (Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 183-184.)

“We now hiked in single file, clinging to the side of the cliff. According to the map, one circled this convex wall of limestone for perhaps half an hour, then ascended through relatively


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easy terrain before making a final sharp ascent to the summit. I let Benjamin go first, with Henny Gurland and her son behind me. It seemed only right for him to set the pace, given the circumstances, though I planned to switch into the lead when we got safely through this particular stretch. We kept perhaps ten or twenty paces between us. The accident happened in slow garish color. Benjamin suddenly began to lose his footing and veer away from the cliff. I watched in horror as he began to teeter toward the precipice, sway on the lip of the cavern, regain his balance, then waver again. Instinctively I lurched to him, but I was too late. I was just in time to watch him skid down the steep cliffside, rolling and turning upright part of the way, grabbing with his free hand for roots and branches. He dropped about thirty yards and landed on a lower ledge, hitting a pine shrub that stopped him from pitching into the ravine. Had he missed that shrub, he’d still be falling now.” (Jay Parini, Benjamin’s Crossing: A Novel. New York, NY: Holt, Henry & Company, Inc., 1998: 215.)

“Having decided the route he must take, Raimundo Silva gets to his feet, shakes the dust from his breeches and begins to descend the steps. The dog has followed him, but keeps his distance, like someone accustomed to being stoned, and the man only has to bend down and pretend he is picking up a stone and the dog takes fright. At the bottom of the steps, the dog hesitated, and appeared to be asking himself, Should I or should I not go any further, but decided to carry on following the proof-reader, who is making his way down the Calçada do Correio Velho.” (Saramago, The History of the Siege of Lisbon: 60-61.)

“WHAT ELSE CAN BE DONE IN THE ABYSS BUT TO TALK Sixteen years tell in the subterranean education of the émeute, and June 1848 understood it far better than June 1832…. There were no longer giants against colossi. It resembled Milton and Dante rather than Homer. Demons attacked, specters resisted…. A voice from the most obscure depths of the groups, cried…”Citizens, let us offer the protest of corpses….” The name of the man who thus spoke was never known….that great anonymous always found in crises and in social births…. After the man of the people, who decreed, “the protest of the corpses,” had spoken and given the formula of the common soul, from all lips arose a strangely satisfied and terrible cry, funereal in meaning and triumphant in tone: “Long live death! Let us stay!” “Why all?” said Enjolras.


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“All! All!”…. (Victor Hugo, Les Misérables, quoted in Derrida, The Specters of Marx: 96.)

“The survey concluded—plausibly, but only for events prior to August 6, 1945—that “probably more persons lost their lives by fire at Tokyo in a 6-hour period than at any time in the history of man….The largets number of victims were the most vulnerable: women, children and the elderly. How many people died on the night of March 9-10 in what flight commander General Thomas Power termed “the greatest single disaster incurred by any enemy in military history”? The Strategic Bombing Survey estimated that 87,793 people died in the raid, 40,918 were injured, and 1,008,005 people lost their homes. Robert Rhodes estimating the dead at more than 100,000 men, women, and children, suggested that probably a million more were injured and another million were left homeless. The Tokyo Fire Department estimated 97,000 killed and 125,000 wounded. The Tokyo Police offered a figure of 124,711 killed and wounded and 286,358 buildings and homes destroyed. The figure of roughly 100,000 deaths, provided by the Japanese and American authorities, both of whom may have had their reasons of their own for minimizing the death toll, seems to me arguably low in light of population density, wind conditions, and survivors’ accounts. With an average of 103,000 inhabitants per square mile and peak levels as high as 135,000 per square mile, the highest density of any industrial city in the world, and with firefighting measures ludicrously inadequate to the task, 15.8 square miles of Tokyo were destroyed. An estimated 1.5 million people lived in the burned-out areas. Given a near total inability to fight fires of the magnitude produced by the bombs, it is possible to imagine that casualties may have been several times higher than the figures presented on both sides of the conflict. The single effective Japanese government measure taken to reduce the slaughter of U.S. bombing was the 1944 evacuation to the countryside of 400,000 children from major cities, 225,000 of them from Toyo.” (Mark Selden, cited in Tanaka and Young, Bombing Civilians: A Twentieth-Century History: 85.)

“As darkness approached, I envisioned the end. I had kept one fragmentation grenade under the radio table. If still alive when enemy soldiers came through the doorway, I would have the pin already pulled and the grenade pressed to the side of my head; painless, I thought. No capture, no torture, maybe even a “dink” or two bleed a bit for the cause. It wasn’t the best idea I had ever had, but at least it was a plan. I was relieved to have an alternative to simply not knowing what I would do. In reality, however, no one can be sure what they will do until they actually face death.”


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(Archer, A Patch of Ground: 91.)

“And now the profound depth of the sky dismays me; its purity irritates me. The insensibility of the sea, the immutability of the whole spectacle revolt me … Ah! Must one eternally suffer, or else eternally flee beauty? Nature, pitiless sorceress, ever victorious rival, do let me be! Stop tempting my desires and my pride! The study of beauty is a duel in which the artist shrieks with terror before being overcome.” (Charles Baudelaire, (trans. by Louis Varése) Paris Spleen, 3.)

“Baudelaire’s poetic sensibility…bears the mark of an experience of dehumanization, of reification or the transformation of the self into a dead object…”Spleen” refers specifically to the mode of melancholia in which the subject can no longer mournfully “observe” the permanent catastrophe of the natural history, but rather in a quite literal sense, is this catastrophe.” (Benjamin cited in Gunster, Capitalizing on Culture: 141-142.)

“Although it was a painful decision for the Allies, the two atomic drops, with the concomitant loss of an additional 150,000 Japanese citizens, combined with a rapidly worsening war situation, largely precipitated by the area bombing of the industrial cities, convinced the Japanese that further resistance was pointless. Defending against the massed fleets of formidable, heavilyprotected B-29 Superfortresses was difficult enough, but the atomic drops on Hiroshima and Nagasaki convinced them that they were powerless to define the entire nation from the high and fast-flying, singly-penetrating B-29s that could be bombing anywhere in the nation. This underscoring of the futility of further resistance spared the Japanese people from the obligation of being killed to the last available fighting man and woman. Therefore, strategic bombing undoubtedly ultimately prevented many casualties, both Allied and Japanese, by eliminating the need for an armed invasion of the Japanese mainland, the costs of which, measured by any yardstick, would have been horrible. It is perhaps appropriate that the area bombing policy’s most dedicated champion, Sir Arthur Harris, should have the last word on the moral justification of command policy. In one of his famous newsreel speeches of the war, he reminded his audience that it was the Nazis who had “sown the wind,” and that, in return, they would “reap the whirlwind.”” (Bashow, No Prouder Place: 482-483.)


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“According to a presentation given by former Harvard sociologist Patricia Case, reports authorized by the U.S. government in 1939 suggested that meth had “psychotic” and “antisocial” side effects, including increased libido, sexual aggression, violence, hallucinations, dementia, bodily shaking, hyperthermia, sadomasochism, inability to orgasm, Satanic thoughts, general immorality, and chronic insomnia. Nonetheless, Japanese, American, British, and German soldiers were all given methamphetamine pills to stay awake, to stay focused, and to perform under the extreme duress of war. Methedrine, according to Case, was part of every American airman’s preflight kit.” (Reding, Methland: 45.)

“The doctrine of Kriegsraison should be rejected, because victory is hardly ever an ultimate, all-justifying, necessity. To be sure, in ancient wars, being conquered sometimes meant the murder, rape, and enslavement of the entire population. Faced with a genuine existential threat of this sort, warriors could plead military necessity. Michael Walzer calls it “supreme emergency” and he believe Great Britain faced a supreme emergency in 1940 when Churchill ordered the terror bombing of German cities. But supreme emergencies are few and far between, and Walzer takes pains to “set radical limits to the notion of necessity”; in his view, the need for terror bombing had already passed by 1942. The United States never faced an existential threat in its war with Japan, whose war aim was merely control of the western Pacific. It faces no existential threat in its current conflict with Al Qaeda. In the grips of war fever or war panic, the costs of defeat are easily inflated into supreme emergencies, and only this gives the doctrine of Kriegsraison whatever plausibility it seems to have.” (David Lubon, “War Crimes: The Law of Hell,” in Larry May (ed.), War: Essays in Political Philosophy. New York and Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008: 269-270.)

“It is true that the economic and technical environment of the West is as much the natural element of the new brand of terrorists as the rural populations of the Third World were for earlier generations. The nation attacked, though, is still limited to a traditional response: to nominate another nation as a terrorist or rogue state so as to locate the specter of terrorism within a concrete territorial enemy, a target. Thus the United States responded by taking action against Afghanistan, much as thirty years earlier when, tired of fruitlessly battling the Vietcong guerillas, the United States trained its sights on North Vietnam. Indeed, the Bush doctrine of preventive military strikes eerily resembles the anti-Communist domino theory, that earlier expression of the horror of falling. Could it be that the decades of relative America peacefulness and readiness to cooperate that followed the defeat in Vietnam were merely an interim period, akin to the Weimar Republic, with its pleasant illusion of a pacified Germany? Or, as with the French cries


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for revanche for Sadowa, that America’s post-September 11 war fever is really a response to an earlier and unresolved defeat?” (Schivelbusch, The Culture of Defeat: 294.)

“In fact, since 1945, nothing has gone right for us. The war in Korea was a draw. The war in Vietnam was a defeat. Our constant meddling in the affairs of countries has made us not only widely hated but, rather more serious, despised.” (Gore Vidal, August, “The State of the Union Revisited,” Esquire, 1980, quoted in Nichols, Against the Beast: 259.)

“Don Quixote, walking down some narrow dark street somewhere, turned around to the dog, She wasn’t even sure it was the dog. The dog woofed. ‘Can’t you actually bark?’ Don Quixote asked the dog. ‘It’s Christmas. Can’t you, just for once, give me something?’ She wasn’t contented with her lot. The dog, being doggish, that is guilty or Catholic, decided it couldn’t give Don Quixote anything because Don Quixote wanted. Nevertheless, the doggish unknown dog was all Don Quixote had.” (Acker, Don Quixote: 126.)

“Bankrupt corporate capitalism is on its way to bankrupting the socialism that is trying to save it,” he added. “That is the end stage. If they no longer have socialism to save them, then we are into feudalism. We are into private police, gated communities, and serfs with a twentyfirst century nomenclature.” (Hedges, Empire of Illusion: 187.)

“For its subjects to participate in the body of the empire, their waste need not be subjected to microscopic scrutiny. The patrolling and controlling of orifices are sufficient strategies. It is enough to enforce a code of shitting—the master’s code, the code of he who knows; namely, he who know how to hold it in. In the long run, “sustained custom would make them all almost the same,” as De Seysell said to the king, when he called on him to follow in the footsteps of those “illustrious conquerors,” the Romans, “when they were keepers of the greatest kingdom on earth and they wished to expand it and make it eternal.” […] A compulsion to make all things almost


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the same cannot fully account for the workings of a power that conflates shit and speech, and seeks to ensure the master’s grip on his soul.” (Laporte, History of Shit: 63-64.)

“The guardians—the twelve are there but not at full muster. Well! Above all not understand. Simply note now those still faithful have moved apart. Such ill seen that night in the pastures. While head included she lies hidden. Under on closer inspection a long greatcoat. A man’s by the buttons. The buttonholes. Eyes close does she see him?” (Beckett, Ill Seen Ill Said: 74.)

“We bounced along an ill-kept coast road. A tide full of broken beams, cars floating with their wheels in the air, spars and coffee tables, television sets, refrigerators, loudspeakers, turntables, hulks of little pleasure boats smashed against the rocks, cast carapaces of mobile homes—the ignoble detritus of the civilization of half a state tumbled into the water from bombed-out waterside developments further up the coast lapped and knocked at the breakwater. I remember particularly a monstrous dog’s head, in brown plaster, head of a dachshund in a bow tie and a chef’s cap—it had rotated on a pole, I recalled from my spell on the road, outside a chain of hot-dog stands, the eponymous sign-board of the Doggie Diner, now consigned to the enormous refuse bin of the ocean.” (Carter, The Passion of New Eve: 176.)

“I marvel at how much more colorful and compelling man’s imagination is than reality. I had just seen the monarchy fall; since then I have witnessed the most terrible and bloody scenes; well! I tell you, none of these tableaux caused then or later an emotion as poignant or profound as I experienced that day at the sight of the ancient home of my fathers and the memory of the peaceful days and happy hours that I passed there without knowing their price. I can say that it was there and on that day I really understood the full bitterness of revolutions.” (de Tocqueville, Recollections, quoted in Shiner, The Secret Mirror: 126.)

“And perhaps it is then he see the heaven of the old dream, the heaven of the sea and the earth too, and the spasms of the waves from shore to shore all stirrings to their tiniest stir, and the so different motion of men for example, who are not tied together, but free to come and go as they


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please. And they make full use of it and come and go, their great balls and sockets rattling and clacking like knackers, each on his way. And when one dies the others go on, as if nothing had happened. I feel.” (Samuel Beckett, “Malone Dies,” quoted in Three Novels By Samuel Beckett: 233.)

“The wave I thought I was controlling sweeps me away and the triumphant course I had thought to achieve is transformed into a common shipwreck whose very site no one will ever know.” (Gustave Flaubert quoted in Sartre, The Family Idiot, Volume 2: 338.)

“The sea fight had been severe, and many ships and lives had been lost on both sides; the victorious Syracusans and their allies now picked up their wrecks and dead, and sailed off to the city and set up a trophy, while the Athenians, overwhelmed by disaster, never even thought of asking leave to take up their dead or wrecks, but wished to retreat that very night. Demosthenes, however, went to Nicias and gave it as his opinion that they should man the ships they had left and make another effort to force their passage out next morning; saying that they had still left more ships fit for service than the enemy, the Athenians having about sixty remaining as against less than fifty against their opponents’. Nicias was quite of his mind; but when they wished to man the vessels, the sailors, who were so utterly overcome by their defeat as no longer to believe in the possibility of success, refused to go on board.” (Thucydides cited in Keegan, The Book of War: 15.)

“For the ship was sunk. All that could be seen was fingers of wood spread out and sticking up into, stinking up, the sky. Thus, the girls visited the dead pirates who lived under the water. Unnoticed, Ange disappeared in the direction her friend had gone. King Pussy interrupted the speech she was trying to give to mutter, “First ship I ever lost.” It was the first time she had ever been on a ship. Finally, Pussycat munched on a dead fish. Wearied beyond endurance, the pirate girls fell back into the world of mud.” (Acker, Pussy, King of the Pirates: 240-241.)


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“He stood leaning on the gritty concrete rail. Perhaps in the world’s destruction it would be possible to at last see how it was made. Oceans, mountains. The ponderous counterspectacle of things ceasing to be. The sweeping waste, hydroptic and coldly secular. The silence.” (McCarthy, The Road: 274.)

“That which lies here in ruins, the highly significant fragment, the remnant, is, in fact, the finest material in baroque creation. For it is common practice in the literature of the baroque to pile up fragments ceaselessly, without any strict idea of a goal, and, in the unremitting expectation of a miracle, to take the repetition of stereotypes for a process of intensification. The baroque writer must have regarded the work of art as just such a miracle. And if, on the other hand, it seemed to be the calculable result of the process of accumulation, it is no more difficult to reconcile these two things than it was for the alchemist to reconcile the longed-for miraculous ‘work’ and the subtle theoretical recipes. The experimentation of the baroque writers resembles the practice of the adepts. The legacy of antiquity constitutes, item for item, the elements from which the new whole is mixed. Or rather: is constructed. For the perfect vision of this new phenomenon was the ruin.” (Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama, 178.)

“Finally he put his spade aside, gently lifted the unknown dog and placed it in the grave. What a strange face that dog had. When, with a shock, he had discovered the dead dog on a street corner, the idea of burying it had made his heart so heavy and surprised that he had not even had eyes for that hard snout and congealed saliva. It was a strange, objective dog. The dog was a little bigger than the hole he had excavated, and after being covered with earth it would be a barely perceptible mound of earth on the plain. This was exactly as he wanted it. He covered the dog with earth and flattened the ground with his hands, feeling its form in his palms with care and pleasure, as if he were smoothing it again and again. The dog was now merely a part of the land’s appearance.” (Clarice Lispector, “The Crime of the Mathematics Professor,” in Clarice Lispector (Giovanni Pontiero, Translator), Family Ties. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1984: 142.)

“Yes: it sounds less erotic than homicidal. Forget Renaissancemblances between fucking and death. In today’s diseased now, everything’s literal; and Mark admits this sounds deeply nuts. Like slam-dancing, serial killings, Faces of Death Parts I-III, civilian populations held hostage


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by their fear of foreign target areas. It is neither romantic nor clever, Mark knows. It’s cold. Far colder than today. Colder than killing people because you need what they need. Colder than paying someone just what the market will bear.” (David Foster Wallace, Girl With Curious Hair: 323-324.)

“It was this cluttered abyss from which Baudelaire conjured up his images of beauty and evil, of the moment of hushed transcendence swelling in rot and decay, or the lush, literal contours of sin and grace, of eroticism and monstrosity contained in the glance, or the sound of a footfall, or the motion of fog in the abandoned city. Baudelaire’s allegory is, like that of the baroque, most striking when it ruthlessly combines the most insistently graphic images of the tormented, isolated, or dismembered body with the description of evil. It is a connection whose result, the allegorical image, renders the appearance of the new urban landscape into its Ur-old form. The myth of the modern as infinite progress slides into its true appearance, the repetition of the horrors of existence, in all their “beauty.” (Pensky, Melancholy Dialectics: 165.)

“Interrogation Log of Detainee 063 Day 50, January 11, 2003. 0230: Source received haircut. Detainee did not resist until the beard was cut. Detainee stated he would talk about anything if his beard was left alone. Interrogator asked detainee if he would be honest about himself. Detainee replied “if God wills.” Beard was shaven. A little water was poured over the detainee’s head to reinforce and wash the hair off. Interrogator continued the futility approach. The detainee began to cry when talking.” (Sands, Torture Team: 154.)

“Photo Journalist: One through nine, no maybes, no supposes, no fractions. You can't travel in space, you can't go out into space, you know, without, like, you know, uh, with fractions - what are you going to land on - one-quarter, three-eighths? What are you going to do when you go from here to Venus or something? That's dialectic physics.” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)


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“Fear is the glimpse into the abyss when meaning flows out of phenomena. The allegory and the sublime both group around the experience of vertiginous depth or emptiness. […] This horror is arrived at through the withdrawal of nature, ‘privation of light: terror of darkness; privation of others: terror of solitude; privation of life: terror of death.’ This is the horror of abject emptiness.” (Geyer-Ryan, Fables of Desire: 117.)

“One of the smashed dolls was a Quixote, not the usual Quixote looking for love and purity in a society in which there weren’t. In a society where language (the expressions of ideals) and acts had no relation to each other. But a Quixote writhing, like one of Capitol’s guts, into thinness from anger. A Quixote hating everything that he knew, not out of loneliness, but in a world in which love and community had been so forgotten that the absence of love no longer occurred, was known. It wasn’t actually anger, but a longing unto hunger which had eaten up all the bones. The bare bones resembled bestiality.” (Acker, In Memoriam to Identity: 240.)

“We see the wounded knight laid upon the ground, his wounds examined, washed and bandaged, often with a wimple from a woman’s forehead; the various practices of giving a stimulating wound-drink to relieve faintness, of pouring oil or wine into wounds, of stanching hemorrhage or relieving pain by sundry herbs, of wound-sucking to prevent internal hemorrhage; the mumbling of charms over wounds; the many balsams, salves and plasters used in wounddressing; the feeling of the pulse in the cephalic, median and hepatic veins to ascertain the patient’s chances of recovery; the danger of suffocation or heat-stroke from the heavy visored and coat of mail; the eventual transportation of the patient by hand, on shields or litters, on horseback or on litters attached to horses; the sumptuous chambers and couches reserved for the high-born, and the calling in of physicians, usually from the famous schools of Palermo or Montpellier in grave cases.” (Stephenson, The Last Full Measure: 393-394.)

“But will it always be the fate of seers to utter idées by definition reçues from everysomewhere suspended in some black cloud of news enveloping the earth and ever replenished, at which kings and counselors will shrug and talk of wave troughs silver linings bright tunnel-ends and chrome eldorados for all? The clichés of the future will develop however, framed in big surprise as value added such as dynamic structures for instance that will change


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while passing through the minds of their observers, seers, readers, cyberneticians, historians, pigfarmers and such.” (Christine Brooke-Rose, Amalgamenon, quoted in Lawrence, Techniques for Living: 110.)

““Si recte calculum ponas, ubique naufragium est: “If you add it up aright, everywhere is shipwreck.” Everything is shipwreck, and then we start moving. We start moving because we have to. It is a matter of life against death.”” (Petronius, Satyricon, quoted in Brown, Apocalypse –And/Or- Metamorphosis: 163.)

“Like one who keeps afloat on a shipwreck by climbing to the top of the mast that is already crumbling. But from there he has a chance to give a signal leading to his rescue.” (Walter Benjamin in a letter to Gerhard Scholem dated April 17, 1931 cited in Hannah Arendt (ed.), Walter Benjamin: Illuminations, 19.)

“It is true that Fevvers had won the admiration of many men of science. Walser recalled how the young woman had entertained the curiosity of the entire Royal College of Surgeons for three hours without so much as unbuttoning her bodice for them, and discussed navigation in birds with a full meeting of the Royal Society with such infernal assurance and so great a wealth of scientific terminology that not one single professor had dared to be rude enough to question her on the extent of her personal experience.” (Carter, Nights at the Circus: 60.)

“I stopped. I thought, this map has taken you to an otherwhere, not a somewhere. I thought, you do not need to “go” or “arrive” either as a self or a character necessarily. “Now I understood that my actions had not followed an hourly pattern spliced by minutes. They had moved organically in rhythms and patterns like blood, corpuscles, breathing, or digestion. Or even matter in space or amniotic fluid. I understood—after the fact—since I had moved intuitively—that I had moved in bursts and ruptures, in sounds and motions sometimes more infinitesimally small than atoms, in the spaces between things, or in and out of motions like a train-hopper or a parasite—so that my journey had no origin or purpose or end.”


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(Lidia Yuknatvitch, “Toward the Edge of the Hermetic: Notes on Raising Fiction from the Dead,” R.M. Berry and Jeffrey R. Di Leo (eds.), Fiction’s Present: Situating Contemporary Narrative Innovation. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2008: 124.)

“The people as a whole are not perfect; but no special group of the people is more perfect: that is the moral and rationale of democracy. Consistent pessimism about man, far from promoting authoritarianism, alone can inoculate the democratic faith against it. “Man’s capacity for justice makes democracy possible,” [Reinhold] Niebuhr has written in his remarkable book on democratic theory; “but man’s inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary.” (Arthur Schlesinger Jr., The Vital Center: 170.)

“Hamm: Am I right in the center? Clov: I’ll measure it. Hamm: More or less! More or less! Clov: (moving chair slightly): There! Hamm: I’m more or less in the center? Clov: I’d say so. Hamm: You’d say so! Put me right in the center! Clov: I’ll go get the tape. Hamm: Roughly! Roughly! (Clov moves the chair slightly.) Bang in the center! Clove: There! (Pause.) Hamm: I feel a little too far to the left. (Clove moves chair slightly.)


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Now I feel too far to the right. (Clove moves chair slightly.) Now I feel too far back. (Clov moves chair slightly.) Don’t stay there, (i.e. behind the chair.) you give me the shivers. (Clov returns to his place beside the chair.) (Samuel Beckett, Endgame: A Play in One Act. New York: Grove Press Inc., 1958: 26-27.)

“At this moment her thoughts were interrupted by a loud shouting of ‘Ahoy! Ahoy! Check!’ and a Knight, dressed in crimson armour, came galloping down upon her, brandishing a great club. Just as he reached her, the horse stopped suddenly: ‘You’re my prisoner!’ the Knight cried, as he tumbled off his horse. Startled as she was, Alice was more frightened for him than for herself at the moment, and watching him with some anxiety as he mounted again. As soon as he was comfortably in the saddle, he began to once more ‘You’re my – ‘but here another voice broke in ‘Ahoy! Ahoy! Check!’ and Alice looked round in some surprise for the new enemy. This time it was a White Knight. He drew up at Alice’s side, and tumbled off his horse just as the Red Knight had done then he got on again, and the two Knights sat and looked at each other without speaking. Alice looked from one to the other in some bewilderment. ‘She’s my prisoner, you know!’ the Red Knight said at last. ‘Yes, but then I came and rescued her!’ the White Knight replied. ‘Well, we must fight for her, then’ said the Red Knight, as he took up his helmet (which hung from the saddle, and was something the shape of a horse’s head), and put it on. … Another Rule of Battle, that Alice had not noticed, seemed to be that they always fell on their heads, and the battle ended with their both falling off in this way, side by side: when they got up again, they shook hands, and then the Red Knight mounted and galloped off. ‘It was a glorious victory, wasn’t it?’ said the White Knight, as he came up panting.” (Lewis Carroll, 84-85.)

“When people talk about the psychological war of ideas that takes place in conflict, they are often not talking about merely about the effects on the field of battle, but also among the broader populace. Geopolitics is not a popularity contest, but it is dangerous to disregard international public opinion to such a degree as to assist the recruitment and growth of radical, anti-American


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groups. If you lose your credibility and reputation, you alienate your allies, reinforce your foes, and shoot your own ideas in the foot. General David Petraeus, the commander in Iraq, once described these aspects as 80 percent of the fight. Unfortunately, by most metrics, the United States is losing this war. In a few short years, America went from being viewed as the beacon on the hill of freedom, Coca-Cola, and blue jeans that won the cold war to the dark home of Abu Ghraib, Gitmo, and orange jumpsuits. Already at the bottom of a deep hole, we can’t afford to dig much deeper. Hence, former assistant secretary of defense Larry Korb argues, “Unless you are refighting some form of World War II, your warfighting must include some part of trying to sway the people…..If the U.S. doesn’t handle robotics right, it will undermine [our] moral standing, and the U.S. can’t be a global leader without such standing.” John Pike of the Global Security organization concurs, “This [the robotics revolution] opens up great vistas, some quite pleasant, others quite nightmarish. On the one hand, this could make our flesh-and-blood soldiers so hard to get to that traditional war—a match of relatively evenly matched peers—could become a thing of the past. But this might also rob us of our humanity. We could be the ones that wind up looking like Terminators in the world’s eyes.” Noah Shachtman sums it up with another sci-fi reference: “The optics of the situation could look really freaking bad. It makes us look like the Evil Empire [from Star Wars] and the other guys like the Rebel Alliance, defending themselves versus robot invaders.” (Singer, Wired for War: 309-310.)

“[Holding the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch] King Arthur: How does it... um... how does it work? Sir Lancelot: I know not, my liege. King Arthur: Consult the Book of Armaments. Brother Maynard: Armaments, chapter two, verses nine through twenty-one. Cleric: [reading] And Saint Attila raised the hand grenade up on high, saying, "O Lord, bless this thy hand grenade, that with it thou mayst blow thine enemies to tiny bits, in thy mercy." And the Lord did grin. And the people did feast upon the lambs and sloths, and carp and anchovies, and orangutans and breakfast cereals, and fruit-bats and large chu... Brother Maynard: Skip a bit, Brother... Cleric: And the Lord spake, saying, "First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin. Then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it. Brother Maynard: Amen.


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All: Amen. King Arthur: Right. One... two... five. Galahad: Three, sir. King Arthur: Three.” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, IMDB)

“What is needed is to escape all forms of dogmatism, be they religious or political. To trust in the Party or the Church is to trust in ossified institutions that cannot withstand the shock of the new. Thus openness to that which has not yet become, the dynámei on, the being-in-possibility, gives us the possibility of transcending without recourse to the transcendental.” (Ernst Bloch (J.T. Swann, Translator), Atheism in Christianity. New York and London: Verso, 2009: xxviii-xxviv.)

Chapter Four: Black Nights Without Redemption.

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“Blessed citation! Among all the words in our vocabulary, it has the privilege of simultaneously representing two operations, one of removal, the other of graft, as well as the object of these operations—the object removed and the object grafted on, as if the word remained the same in these two different states. Is there known elsewhere, in whatever other field of human activity, a similar reconciliation, in one and the same word, of the incompatible fundamentals which are disjunction and conjunction, mutilation and wholeness, the less and the more, export and import, decoupage and collage? The dialectic of citation is all-powerful: one of the vigorous mechanisms of displacement, it is even stronger than surgery.” (Antoine Compagnon, “The Second Hand or the Work of Citation,” quoted in Perloff, unoriginal geniurs: 3-4.)

“The artist, he imagined, standing in the position of mediator between the world of his experience and the world of his dreams—“a mediator consequently gifted with twin faculties, a selective faculty and a reproductive faculty. “To equate thses faculties was the secret of artistic success: the artist who could disentangle the subtle soul of the image from its mesh of defining circumstances most exactly and “re-embody” it in artistic circumstances chosen as the most exact for it in its new office, he was the supreme artist. This perfect coincidence of the two artistic faculties Stephen called poetry.” (James Joyce, Stephen Hero, quoted in Peters, The Mutilating God: 84.)

“These things are only the uprush from the void, The wings angelic and demonic, the sound of the abyss Dedicated to death. And this is you.” (Conrad Aiken, “Three Preludes,” cited in Ackerley and Clipper, A Companion to Under the Volcano: 415.)


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“One always hears in the writings of a hermit something of the echo of the desert, something of the whisper and shy vigilance of solitude; in his strongest words, even in his cry, there still resounds a new and more dangerous kind of silence and concealment. He who has sat alone with his soul day and night, year in year out, in confidential discord and discourse, and in his cave – it may be a labyrinth, but it may be a goldmine – become a cave-bear or treasure-hunter or a treasure-guardian and dragon, finds that his concepts themselves at last acquire a characteristic twilight colour, a smell of the depths and of must, something incommunicable and reluctant which blows cold on every passer-by.” (Friedrich Nietzsche (Translated by R.J. Holingdale), Beyond Good and Evil. London and New York: Penguin Books, 1973: 216.)

“The only philosophy which can be responsibly practiced in the face of despair is the attempt to contemplate all things as they would present themselves from the standpoint of redemption. Knowledge has no light but that shed on the world by redemption: all else is reconstruction, mere technique. Perspectives must be fashioned that displace and estrange the world, reveal it to be, with its rifts and crevices, as indigent and distorted as it will appear one day in the messianic light. To gain such perspectives without velleity or violence, entirely from felt contact with its objects—this alone is the task of thought.” (Theodor W. Adorno, Minima Moralia, quoted in Richard Wolin, Labyrinths: Explorations in the Critical History of Ideas. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2004: 53.)

“pitch black powder black


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wood black coal black carbon black lamp black stove black ink black


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smoke black jet black sloe black smut black shoe black ivory black


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Japan black lead black chrome black silver black platinum black tar black


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tear black road black gas black rat black bag black stone black


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stone black bone black bone black” (David Antin, “The Black Plague,” quoted in Rasula, Modernism and Poetic Inspiration: 176-177.)

“[…] rigidly fixed words, expressions, verses that, like a malleable mass, which has later cooled and hardened, preserve in me the imprint of the collision between a larger collective and myself. Just as, when you awake, a certain kind of significant dream survives in the form of the words though all the rest of the dream content has vanished, here isolated words have remained in place as marks of catastrophic encounters.” (Walter Benjamin quoted in (eds. Radstone and Schwarz), Memory: 129.)

“And Milton said, I go to Eternal Death! The Nations still Follow after the detestable Gods of Priam; in pomp Of warlike selfhood, contradicting and blaspheming.” (Blake, “Milton: Book The First,” in Blake, The Complete Poetry & Prose: 108.)

“There will be no future, I am saying finally, without war, poverty, Malthussian panic, tyranny, cruelty, classes, dead time, and all the ills of the flesh is heir to, because there will be no


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future; only a present in which the left (always embattled and marginalized, always—proudly—a thing of the past) struggles to assemble the ‘material for a society’ Nietzsche thought had vanished from the earth. And this is a recipe for politics, not quietism—a left that can look the world in the face.” (T. J. Clark, “For a Left With No Future,” in New Left Review 74, (March/April 2012): 75.)

“I take as my starting point the small nonsensical hope.” (Walter Benjamin, The Correspondence of Walter Benjamin and Gershom Scholem, 1932-1940, quoted in Gerhard Richter, Thought-Images: Frankfurt School Writers’ Reflections from Damaged Life. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 2007: 71.)

“We are reliving the false-starts and illusionments of those who, as children of the nineteenth century, tried to mount a revolt against socio-symbolic unity.” (Julia Kristeva, Revolution in Poetic Language, quoted in Starr, Logics of Failed Revolt: 165.)

“[the Black Knight continues to threaten Arthur despite getting both his arms and one of his legs cut off] Black Knight: Right, I'll do you for that! King Arthur: You'll what? Black Knight: Come here! King Arthur: What are you gonna do, bleed on me? Black Knight: I'm invincible! King Arthur: ...You're a loony.” (Monty Python and the Holy Grail, IMDB)

“Nothing is true, and it is possible that something else will happen.” (Karl Kraus, quoted in Steven Harris, “The Chain of Glass: Rethinking Breton’s Concept of Objective Chance,” Collapse, 4, May 1999: 49.)

“Why is this messianic power so weak (schwach)? As Giorgio Agamben has suggested, we might see this as a reference to the preachings of Christ according to St. Paul in 2 Cor. 12: 9: for


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the Messiah ‘my strength is made perfect in weakness’ (in Luther’s translation: ‘mein kraft ist in den schwachen mechtig’). But the expression also – probably – has a present political signification: the melancholy conclusion Benjamin draws from the past and present failures of the struggle for emancipation. Redemption is anything but assured; it is merely a slim possibility, which one has to know how to grasp.” (Löwy, Fire Alarm: 33.)

“The judges said, “You missed it by a fraction. Rise up and brace your troops for the attack. The dreamers ride against the men of action, oh see the men of action falling back.” (Cohen, “The Traitor,” in Stranger Music: 304.)

“The situation is worse now than it was in the period from the beginning of modern art (in the last third of the nineteenth century) to the ascent of fascism. The revolution in the West was defeated, fascism was shown a way to institutionalize terror in order to save the capitalist system, and in the most advanced industrial country which still dominates this system on a global scale, the working class is not a revolutionary class. Though the classical bourgeois culture is no more, the development of an independent post-bourgeois (socialist) culture has been arrested. Without soil and basis in society, the cultural revolution appears as the abstract negation rather than the historical heir of bourgeois culture.” (Marcuse, Counterrevolution and Revolt: 93.)

“327 The novel is dead. Long live the antinovel, built from scraps.” (David Shields, Reality Hunger: A Manifesto. New York: Alfred A. Kopf, 2010: 115.)

“Sokrates calls Eros a Sophis, but Sappho calls him “weaver of fictions” [mythoplokton].” (Sappho quoted in Carson, Eros: 170.)


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“Grey as usual. Black soot creeping in around casement windows. Papers scattered. Reams of curly fax pages. Filling corners. Also growing chaos in the street. Last night explosive demo. Nearly making me miss avant-garde party. At last invited to! Having run down for bottle of wine. Barricades everywhere. Rows and rows of cops. Helmets. Sticks. Pavés flying. Cops’ ranks growing thicker. Preventing marchers from approaching nearby ministerial buildings. And me from returning. Chez moi.” (Scott, My Paris: 122.)

“In the East, Taoist mysticism, […], seeks to recover the androgynous self: one of the famous texts of the Tao Te Ching says: He who knows the male, yet cleaves to what is female Becomes like the ravine, receiving all things under heaven (Thence) the eternal virtue never leaks away. This is returning to the state of infancy. And since poetry, as well as psychoanalysis, is the modern heir of the mystical tradition, the hermaphroditic ideal is central, for example, in the message of Rilke. In Letters to a Young Poet he writes: “And perhaps the sexes are more related than we think, and the great renewal of the world will perhaps consist in this, that man and maid, freed from all false feeling and aversion, will seek each other not as opposites, but as brother and sister, as neighbours, and will come together as human beings.” But deeper than the problem of the relation between the sexes is the problem of the reunification of the sexes of the self. In Rilke as artist, according to his friend Lou Andreas Salome, “both sexes unite into an entity.” And Rilke, in his call to God to perfect him as an artist, calls on God to make him a hermaphrodite: Mach Einen herrlich, Herr, mach Einen gross, bau seinem Leben einen schönen Schooss, und seine Scham errichte wie ein Tor in einem Wld von jungen Haaren.“ (Brown, Life Against Death: 134.)

“Toute la valeur de mon livre, s’il a une, sera d’avoir su marcher droit sur un cheveu, suspendu entre le double abîme du lyrisme et du vulgaire.


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The entire value of my book, if it has any, will consist in my having known how to walk straight ahead on a hair, poised between the twin abysses of lyrism and vulgarity.” (Gustave Flaubert, letter to Louise Colet, March 20, 1852, quoted in Ramazani, The Free Indirect Mode: 55.)

“Each of Globalization’s strengths has somehow turned out to have an opposing meaning. The lowering of national residency requirements for corporations has morphed into a tool for massive tax evasions. The idea of a global economic system mysteriously made local poverty seem unreal, even normal. The decline of the middle class—the very basis of democracy— seemed to be just one of those things that happen, unfortunate but inevitable. That the working class and the lower middle class, even parts of the middle class, could only survive with more than one job per person seemed to be expected punishment for not keeping up. The contrast between unprecedented bonuses for mere managers at the top and the four-job families below them seemed inevitable in a globalized world. For two decades an elite consensus insisted that unsustainable third-world debts could not be put aside in a sort of bad debt reserve without betraying Globalism’s essential principles and moral obligations, which included an unwavering respect for the sanctity of international contracts. It took the same people about two weeks to abandon sanctity and propose bad debt banks for their own far larger debts in 2009.” (John Ralston Saul, The Collapse of Globalism, quoted in Hedges, The World As It Is: 286-287.)

“The whole cannot be put together by adding the separated halves, but in both there appear, however distantly, the changes of the whole, which only moves in contradiction. […] Between incomprehensibility and inescapability, there is no third way; the situation has polarized into extremes which actually meet. There is no room between them for the ‘individual.’” (Theodor Adorno, “On the fetish character in music and the regression of listening,” in J.M. Bernstein (ed.), Theodor W. Adorno: The Culture Industry. London: Routledge, 1991: 31.)

“And loftiest of all my snares, You protect all hearts from knowing That the universe is merely a blot On the pure void of non-being!” (Paul Valéry, quoted in Derrida, The Animal That Therefore I Am: 66.)


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“However, the idea of the absolute unpredictability of Redemption does not take account one of the most central theses of traditional Jewish historiography, that is, that the history of humanity is the result of an original plan inherent in the very structures of Creation. Even admitting that man can glimpse the nature of this plan only in its most abstract and general form (for Jewish mysticism, this formula is revealed […] in the four letters of the Divine Name), and that, on the human scale, this extreme generality leaves a vast empty space for the random play of historical contingency, it is still true that human history must be guided, in its depths, by the invisible law of this original plan. Moreover, the idea of historical discontinuity, which no doubt allows the freedom of each individual to interrupt the progression of time at any moment, does contradict the conception, so fundamental in Judaism, of a collective effort of humanity, of a transmission from generation to generation of the same redemptive plan.” (Mosés, The Angel of History: 143.)

“A foul smelling goo was squirted into my mouth. It tasted a lot like the excrement it was made of. “Field rations,” Agniesaka said over my ear phones. She sounded nasty, as though she was still wearing those fangs. “Chow down. Physical training starts in two minutes.” There were no lovely forests, unicorns, or bouncing bimbos today. I was suddenly on a bleak, concrete plain in the cold grey dawn with a thousand troops in ranks around me, doing jumping jacks, pushups, and situps until they hurt. Then we did some more of the same with rude people shouting at us, and took a three kilometer run. I was in a lot of pain when it was finally over.” (Frankowski, A Boy and His Tank: 58.)

“The Y-fronts fell down to her ankles and Carol stood as Nature intended her. She took the penis in her hand. It was small, brown-pinkly insignificant. She looked at it and thought, What’s all the fuss? But then it began to swell, to pump itself up, to inflate. And what a magnificent sight that was! For it didn’t lift itself up in any ungainly fashion, there was nothing mechanical in its sudden growth, nothing wooden. Rather, like a flower opening in a stop-action film, the penis grew all at once, every part of it moving together, in concert, in harmony.” (Self, Cock and Bull: 73.)

“….Cave of the Winds, seat of all great decisions, little Cythère of childhood, eternal library, sanctuary bought for a penny or nothing, where else could man absorb and divest himself of so


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much at the same time? […] ‘Cervantes,’ he called, and Cervantes, surprisingly, appeared half round the corner—there was no door to the stone tomb—with the fighting cock, pretending to struggle, under his arm, chuckling: ‘-Tlaxcala!’ ‘-or perhaps it was on his rump-‘ After a moment, comprehending the Consul’s plight, Cervantes advised: ‘A stone, hombre, I bring you a stone.’ ‘Cervantes!’ (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 295.)

“It is only in this sense that we are pessimists: i.e. in our determination to admit this revaluation to ourselves without any reservations, and to stop telling ourselves tales—lies—the old way. That is precisely how we find the pathos that impels us to seek new values. In sum: the world might be far more valuable than we used to believe; we must see through our naiveté of our ideals.” (Friedrich Nietzsche, The Will to Power, quoted in Day, Dialectical Passions: 106.)

“AND is neither one thing nor the other, it’s always in-between, between two things; it’s the borderline, there’s always a border, a line of flight or flow, only we don’t see it, because it’s the least perceptible of things. And yet it’s along this line of flight that things come to pass; becoming evolve, revolutions take shape.” (Gilles Deleuze quoted in Raunig, Art and Revolution: 237.)

“She is bisexual: What I propose here leads directly to a reconsideration of bisexuality. To reassert the value of bisexuality; hence to snatch it from the fate classically reserved for it in which it is conceptualized as “neuter” because, as such, It would aim at warding off castration. Therefore, I shall distinguish between two bisexualities, two opposite ways of imagining the possibility and practice of bisexuality. 1. Bisexuality as a fantasy of a complete being, which replaces the fear of castration and veils the difference insofar as this is perceived as the mark of a mythical separation— the trace, therefore, of a dangerous and painful ability to cut. Ovid’s Hermaphrodite,


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less bisexual than asexual, not made up of two genders but of two halves. Hence, a fantasy of a unity. Two within one, and not even two wholes. 2. To this bisexuality that melts together and effaces, wishing to avert castration I oppose the other bisexuality, the one with which every subject, who is not shut up inside the spurious Phallocentric Performing Theater, sets up his or her erotic universe. Bisexuality—that is to say the location within oneself of the presence of both sexes, evident and insistent in different ways according to the individual, the nonexclusion of difference or of a sex, and starting with this “permission” one gives oneself, the multiplication of the effects of desire’s inscription on every part of the body and the other body.”

(Hélène Cixous and Catherine Clément, Sorties, in Caws, Manifesto: 623-626.)

“Mr. Brown: Now, Benny, who runs the world? Do you have any idea? Bennie Smith: Not me, Mr. Brown. Mr. Brown: That's right, not you, but a funny thing, they're not so much different from you, but they've got something. They've got it, and they use it. I've got it; [pointing to McClure] Mr. Brown: he hasn't. What is it, Benny? What makes the difference...? Hate! Hate is the word, Benny! Hate the man that tries to beat you. Kill 'em, Benny! Kill 'em! Hate him till you see red, and you'll come out winning the big money, and the girls will come tumblin' after. You'll have to shut off the phone and lock the door to get a night's rest.” (Dialogue from The Big Combo, (1955), 1 MDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047878/quotes)

“…Unterwegs mit dem Auto später war alles anders….Ein Tachometer liess die Beschleunigung leuchten…und du sitzt nicht mal am Steuer….Jede Logistik hat ihren Ursprung im Hirn, jede Semantik ihren Abgrund im Arsch….Und das Beste hier sind die Träume, das tehnische Innenleben des Panzers, sein Unbewusstes, Mechanik, Hydraulik und Elektronik. Praziser als alle Affekte, sind sie es, die ihn insgeheim steurern. Ihre Motorik bringt ihn voran, ihre geländegängige Geometrie – die nur selten euklidisch war- hilft ihm sich zurechzunfinden, wo nichts zu finden ist ausser Zeichen und Dreck. Sollte ich stillsein jetzt, nachdem die Worte ortlos im Raum verstreut sind, jedes entlassen zu seiner Zeit, einzeln augesetzt. Ist alles gesichtet, abgehandelt und phopgraphiert?....Denn diesmal steht mehr auf dem Spiel...die Frage, wer spricht hier, metallische Glottis.“


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“…Later, on the road, everything was different….A tachometer made speed visible…and you’re not even sitting at the steering wheel….Every logistic has its origin in the brain, every semantic abyss in the ass….And the best here are the dreams, the technical inner life of the tank, its unconscious, mechanics, hydraulics and electronics. More precise than all emotions, they’re what secretly guide it. Their engineering move it forward, their all-terrain geometry—which was seldom Euclidean—helps it get its bearings, where nothings to be found but signs and mud. I should be quiet now, now that the words have been dispersed, without location, each word timereleased, individually exposed. Has everything been scanned, checked out, photographed?....Because this time, the stakes are higher…the question, who’s speaking, metalglottis.” (Grübein cited in Monroe, “Avant-Garde Poetries after the Wall”: 102-104.)

“With a unique geography that was as suited for military defense as any medieval European keep, the Shah-i-Kot consisted of steep ridgelines overlooking a turbulent and hostile highaltitude terrain along a north-south axis that measured no more than 9 miles by 9 miles. As a battle space, it compared in size to the Civil War battlefields at Chancellorsville. The Shah-i-Kot was the Afghans’ Masada, their final defensive place, and it had served them for more than two thousand years—against the forces of Alexander the Great in 327 B.C., against British colonial troops in the 1840s, and against the Soviet Union in the late 1980s, when they annihilated 250 Russian soldiers in a day, making the Shah-i-Kot the Russians most costly field of battle since World War Two.” (MacPherson, Roberts Ridge: 99.)

“[…] Ambrose held that there are numerous types of potential futures flapping and honking in man’s conceptual pond. Specifically that there’s a difference between the trinity of: a future within time (history & prophecy); a future beyond time (resurrection & eternity); and a future that ends time (eschaton & apocalypse). Which did we find most attractive? he’d asked rhetorically, finally wiping the nastily critical poem off his green blackboard. Three other things Dr. Ambrose told the workshop (that Mark Nechter doesn’t have in his tiny crabbed notes because his attention had strayed to the loveless pathos of the postmodern Drew-Lynn Eberhardt and the thing she’d scrawled before blowing off the class): “The subject of a story is what it’s about; the object of a story is where it’s going”; “Do not confuse sympathy for the subject and empathy with it—one of the two is bad.” “Yes, he, Ambrose, the author, is a character in and the object of the seminal Lost in the Funhouse; but he is not the main character, the hero or the subject, since the fictionists who tell the truth aren’t able to use real names.”


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(David Foster Wallace, The Girl With Curious Hair: 260-261.)

“I am not such an optimist as to expect that a society with such foundations should straightaway arrive at perfect harmony. But it is my profound conviction that two or three generations will prove enough to wrest man away from the influence of the artificial civilization to which he is subject today and return him to the state of nature, which is the state of kindness and love. But if this ideal is to succeed, and an anarchist society is to be erected upon solid foundations, we must start with the work of destruction. The old, worm-eaten structure must be cast down. Which is what we do. The bourgeoisie claims that we shall never reach our goal. The future, the very near future, will teach it differently. Long live anarchy!” (Emile Henry, “Letter to the Governor of the Conciergerie Prison”, quoted in Guérin, No Gods, No Masters: 402.)

“Ernst: [scolding an employee] I don't care what you *meant* to do- it's what you *did* that I don't like!” (Lines from the movie The Wild Bunch: IMDB, http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0065214s.)

“VULCAN “[…] The world is growing cold.” (Flaubert, The Temptation of St. Anthony: 150.)

“The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even. Pausing outside the entrance to the tea terrace, [she] noticed the tall figure of Captain Webster watching her from the sculpture room. Duchamp’s glass construction, on loan from the Museum of Modern Art, reminded her of the ambiguous role she might have to play. This was chess in which every move was a countergambit. How could she help her husband, that tormented man, pursued by furies more implacable than the Four Riders—the very facts of time and space? She gave a start as Webster took her elbow. He turned to face her, looking into her eyes. ‘You need a drink. Let’s sit down—I’ll explain again why this is so important.”


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(Ballard, The Atrocity Exhibition: 35.)

“It is not enough to be against a cause, one must be in the service of one. I do not think that revolutionary action is to be recognized by the massiveness of victorious street demonstrations. The fascists knew more successful ones. Revolutionary action is first of all the action of the isolated man who plans revolution not only in danger but also in the agony of his conscience….in the double clandestinely of the catacombs and of conscience. In the agony of conscience that risks making revolution impossible: for it is not only a question of seizing the evil-doer but also of not making the innocent suffer. In this also is to be found the difference in Jewish thought between the police and revolutionary politics.” (Emmanuel Levinas, Nine Talmudic Readings, quoted in Davis, Milbank, and Žižek, Theology and the Political: 120.)

“I tried to find my way in and out of this labyrinth without asking anyone, again only directing myself by the points of the compass. Finally one does disentangle oneself, but it is an incredible maze, and my method, which is to acquaint myself with it directly through my senses, is the best.” (from Goethe’s Italian Journey, cited in John Zilcosky, “Sebald’s Travels: The Impossibility of Getting Lost,” in J.J. Long and Anne Whitehead, W.G. Sebald: A Companion. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2004: 103.)

“Shall I to him make known As yet my change, and give him to partake Full happiness with me, or rather not, But keep the odds of knowledge in my power Without copartner?” (John Milton, Paradise Lost quoted in Mintz, Threshold Poetics: 154.)

“[…] This past Is now here: the painter’s Reflected face, in which we linger, receiving Dreams and inspirations on an unassigned Frequency, but the hues have turned metallic, The curves and edges are not so rich. Each person


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Has one big theory to explain the universe But it doesn’t tell the whole story And in the end it is what is outside him That matters, to him and especially to us Who have been given no help whatever In decoding our own man-size quotient and must rely On second-hand knowledge. […].” (John Ashberry, “Self Portrait in a Convex Mirror,” http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/self-portrait-in-a-convexmirror/)

“Let no one tax me with being a dangerous innovator; let no one say that by my writing I seek to blunt the remorse in evildoer’s hearts, that my humane ethics are wicked because they augment those same evildoers penchant for crime. I wish formally to certify here and now that I have none of these perverse intentions; I set forth the ideas which, since the age when I first began to reason, have identified themselves to me, and to whose expression and realization the infamous despotism of tyrants has been opposed for uncounted centuries. So much the worse for those susceptible to corruption by any idea; so much the worse for them who fasten upon naught but the harmful in philosophic opinions, who are likely to be corrupted by everything. Who knows? They may have been poisoned by reading Seneca and Charron. It is not to them I speak; I address myself only to people capable of hearing me out, and they will read me without any danger.” (Marquis de Sade, Philosophy in the Bedroom, quoted in Klossowski, Sade: My Neighbor: 64.)

“Perhaps the solution resides in an eschatological apocalyptism which does not involve the fantasy of the symbolic Last Judgment in which all past accounts will be settled; to refer to another of Benjamin’s metaphors, the task is “merely” to stop the train of history which, left to its own course, leads to a precipice. (Communism is thus not the light at the end of the tunnel, that is, the happy final outcome of a long and arduous struggle—if anything, the light at the end of the tunnel is rather that of another train approaching us at full speed.) This is what a proper political act would be today: not so much to unleash a new movement, as to interrupt the present predominant movement. An act of “divine violence” would then mean pulling the emergency cord on the train of Historical Progress.” (Žižek, First As Tragedy, Then As Farce: 148-149.)


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“What I have called a ‘disappearance of history’ concerns the possibility that reality – as modernity – itself makes ‘history’ an increasingly archaic connection; nonetheless, as language, this relation belongs to a semantic control code, whose purpose is the historicization of experiences, their verbal reduction to the games and rules of the existing players. I have not minimized how difficult it is to engage in a critique with this formation, but it is disappearing. As it does, so appear possible transformations without ‘history’.” (Sande Cohen, quoted in Jenkins, At the Limits of History: 289.)

“Is not utopia – this leap outside – the way in which was radically rethink what is family, what is consumption, what is authority, what is religion, and so on? Does not fantasy of an alternative society and its exteriorization ‘nowhere’ work as one of the most formidable contestations of what is?” (Paul Ricoeur cited in William Katerberg, “History, Hope, and the Redemption of Time,” in Miroslav Volf and William Katerberg (eds.), The Future of Hope: Christian Tradition amid Modernity and Postmodernity. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Erdmans Publishing Co., 2004: 68-69.)

“However, the idea of the absolute unpredictability of Redemption does not take account one of the most central theses of traditional Jewish historiography, that is, that the history of humanity is the result of an original plan inherent in the very structures of Creation. Even admitting that man can glimpse the nature of this plan only in its most abstract and general form (for Jewish mysticism, this formula is revealed […] in the four letters of the Divine Name), and that, on the human scale, this extreme generality leaves a vast empty space for the random play of historical contingency, it is still true that human history must be guided, in its depths, by the invisible law of this original plan. Moreover, the idea of historical discontinuity, which no doubt allows the freedom of each individual to interrupt the progression of time at any moment, does contradict the conception, so fundamental in Judaism, of a collective effort of humanity, of a transmission from generation to generation of the same redemptive plan.” (Mosés, The Angel of History: 143.)

“All these stones, all this sadness, all the light, shards of night-hours and noon-dust, all the twisted pipework of sanctity, wall and towers and rusty haloes, all the prophecies that couldn’t hold in like old men,


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all the sweaty angel-wings all the stinking candles, all the peg-legged tourism, dung of deliverance, gladness and gonads refuse of nothingness bomb and time, all the dust, all these bones in the course of resurrection and in the course of the wind, all this love, all these stones, all this sadness.” (Yehuda Amichai, “Behind All This A Great Happiness Is Hiding,” (1974), quoted in Robert Alter, Defenses of the Imagination: Jewish Writers and Modern Historical Crisis. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publications Society of America, 1977: 262.)

“It has recently been pointed out how Benjamin’s theory of the ‘phantasmagoria’ and the collective ‘dream-sleep’ of capitalism itself draws on this theory of the unconscious production of history, and thus on a teleological, divine, or natural force operating in history to bring it to a close. “Capitalism was a natural phenomenon, with which a new dream-sleep came over Europe, and with it, a reactivation of mythical forces” […], Benjamin writes. According to some commentators, the task is thus for Benjamin, as for Marx, to awaken from this slumber in the formation of the class consciousness of the proletariat […]. Our analysis, however, demonstrates that Benjamin rejected the concept of a latent meaning of history to be freed in a supreme moment of awakening. Against the assimilation of Benjamin to the philsophy of history, one should note that, as I have argued, he rejects the idea of progress and of a historical teleology. Further, the connection between the unconscious production of history and the ‘dream-sleep’ remains unclear in Benjamin, as he saw himself. What is clear is that Benjamin associate the theory of awakening –which for him is an awakening from the nineteenth century and its mistaken ideas about history—with the “now of recognizability” in which a historical constellation of past and present, formed as in a dream, becomes legible and demands interpretation.” (Fritsch, The Promise of Memory: 43-44.)

“THE YOUNG WOMAN Hermit! hermit! thou wilt find diamonds among the flints, fountains beneath the sand, a delectation in all the hazards thou dost despise; and there are even upon the earth places of such beauty that the sight of them would make thee desire to press the whole world against thy heart with love.


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THE OLD WOMAN Each evening that thou liest down upon the earth to slumber, thou dost hope that it may soon lie upon thee and cover thee! THE YOUNG WOMAN Yet thou dost believe in the resurrection of the flesh—which is but the translation of life into eternity! Even as she speaks, the Old Woman becomes still more fleshless; and above her skull, from which the white hair has disappeared, a bat circles in the air. The Young Woman has become fatter. Her robe gleams with shifting colors; her nostrils palpitate, her eyes roll softly. THE FORMER opening her arms, exclaiming: Come to me!—I am Consolation, repose, oblivion, eternal calm! and THE OTHER offering her breasts. I am the sleep-giver, life, happiness inexhaustible! Anthony turns to flee from them. Each lays a hand on his shoulder. The Shroud parts, exposes the Skeleton of Death.” (Flaubert, The Temptation of St. Anthony: 176.)

“Shrieking for help and light across the stagnant water of his dark sick soul, St. Anthony receives as an answer the echo of his fear: the laughter of the monsters created by his visions.” (Text written by Max Ernst accompanying the reproduction of the painting in the exhibition catalog, quoted in Suleiman, Risking Who One Is: 118.)

“Madame Death! Madame Death!”


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(Leopardi, from a “Dialogue Between Fashion and Death,” quoted in Benjamin, The Arcades Project: 68.)

“She took me by the hand and, together, we traversed several rooms. Then she opened the door of a room that offered me an extraordinary spectacle, worthy of a fairy tale. The walls were no longer visible, so covered they were with toys. The ceiling disappeared under an efflorescence of toys that hung down like marvelous stalactites. The floor scarcely yielded a small path on which to walk…It is because of this adventure that I cannot pause before a toy shop and scan the inextricable medley of the bizarre forms and disparate color without thinking of the woman, dressed in velvet and fur, who appeared to me as the Toy Fair.” (Charles Baudelaire, “The Moral of the Toy,” quoted in Agamben, Stanzas: 57.)

“Ah, here in this empty room where she had felt such impassioned happiness, such freedom, such release, she was already feeling exactly as she had felt before she loved Minna, and wrapping herself as of old in that coward’s comfort of irony, of cautious disillusionment! How soon her blood had run cold, how ready she was to slink back into ignominy of thought, ignominy of feeling! And probably only the pleasure of disagreeing, the pique of being thought shabby and deplorable, had kept her from returning to the Place Bellechasse. She looked around her, dragging her gaze over the empty, the soiled and forlorn apartment. There was the wine that Minna had left for her, the slippers she had tossed off, sprawling, one here, one there, and on the table where she had thrown it down and forgotten it, the fifth of the packets which Ingelbrecht (yes, he was dead too), had entrusted her. She took up on of the copies, fingered the cheap paper, sniffed the heavy odor of printers’ink, began to read. “A spectre is haunting Europe…” She seated herself; and leaning her elbows on the table, and sinking her head in her hands, went on reading, obdurately attentive and by degrees absorbed.” (Sylvia Townsend Warner, Summer Will Show, quoted in Love, Feeling Backward: 144.)

“When our own nation is at war with any other, we detest them under the character of cruel, perfidious, unjust and violent: But always esteem ourselves and allies equitable, moderate, and merciful. If the general of our armies be successful, ‘tis with difficulty we allow him the figure and character of a man. He is a sorcerer: He has a communication with daemons; as is reported of Oliver Cromwell, and the Duke of Luxembourg: He is bloody-minded, and takes a pleasure in death and destruction. But if the success be on our side, our commander has all the opposite good qualities, and is a pattern of virtue, as well as courage and conduct. His treachery we call


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policy; His cruelty is an evil inseparable from war. In short, every one of his faults we either endeavor to extenuate, or dignify it with the name of that virtue, which approaches it. It is evident that same method of thinking runs thro’ common life.” (David Hume, “A Treatise on Human Nature (1740),” quoted Hedges, War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning: 19.)

“On the eve of the Revolution, it was said of Paris that “it is impossible to live in this big city without being splattered by the shovel of the garbage collector or by the foul language of the streets.” This only confirms that hygiene’s true drive is located far from its purported aim. The goals of the waste police are directed elsewhere; and, even at the level of discoures, we cannot identify goals per se. If something like a goal can be said to be achieved, it is always at the price of a certain loss of the object (in this case, shit), which is bypassed in favor of its symbolic substitute. Furthermore, it is less subject in question that counts than the subject’s relationship to it. The loss of the object enfolds a shift in the subject’s relationship to his shit, a relationship that now includes his dangling and dependent position vis-à-vis the absolute state.” (Laporte, History of Shit: 48.)

“There is no progress….What we call progress is immured on each planet and vanishes with it. Everywhere and always, the same drama, the same décor, on the same narrow stage, a clamorous humanity, infatuated with its greatness, believing itself to be the entire universe and living in its immense prison, soon about to sink with the globe that has brought the burden of its pride into such a contemptuous state. The same monotony, the same immobilism on the other stars. The universe repeats itself endlessly and runs in place. Eternity plays imperturbably in the infinity of its representations.” (Auguste Blanqui, L’éternité par les asters, quoted in Wolin, Labyrinths: 81-2.)

“Christmas 2001 Even when adults make the greatest effort they can’t imitate the handwriting of small children – or our drawings either. They can’t fake the wonky strokes, botched loops and exaggerated serifs, nor the curiously prosaic orthography. It would be neat if adults, when imitating children’s handwriting, ended up with something that looked like children’s imitation of adult handwriting – but they don’t. There is no mirroring here – only a vast strangeness.” (Self, How The Dead Live: 245.)


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“When on 28 January 1871 the official governmental organ published details of the armistice, the siege of Paris was over-nearly four and one-months after it had commenced. Much had occurred from the day Napoléon III officially surrendered at Sedan and the Republic was declared at the Hôtel de Ville. France’s tempestuous political culture virtually assured that the third attempt at a republic would be no less difficult than the first two attempts. (Shafer, The Paris Commune: 54-55.)

“Whose Paris. B saying. Haunted by lyric dancing towers. Cathedrals kneeling before sepulchers. Monuments combining columns of golden hair. On shoulders.” (Scott, My Paris: 27.)

“Reading Reclus’s Evolution and Revolution or Peter Kropotkin’s Anarchist Morality, Paroles d’un Révolté, or The Conquest of Bread; or Sebastien Faure’s Authority and Liberty, or Machinista and its Consequences; or Grave’s The Moribund Society and Anarchy; or Malatesta’s Between Peasants; or read many pamphlets, or countless manifestoes which, over the past fifteen years, have appeared one by one, each of them expounding new ideas as you suggested to their authors by study or circumstance. Read all that, and then you can formulate a fairly comprehensive opinion of Anarchy. And yet, beware of thinking that Anarchy is a dogma, an unassailable, incontrovertible doctrine, revered by its adepts the way Muslims venerate the Koran.” (Emile Henry, Letter to the Governor of the Conciergerie Prison, quoted in Guérin, No Gods, No Masters: 397.)

“In the rational principle of the Enlightenment, according to Adorno, lies hidden a violence comparable to the diffuse power of myth: “Ideology’s power of resistance to enlightenment is owed to its complicity with identifying thought, or indeed with thought at large [Denken überhaupt]”. In general we can characterize the Western philosophical tradition as the thinking of identity and totality, in whose terms all that is not identical is forced into line with the unambiguous meaning of the Cartesian clare et distincte percipere. Adorno rejects any such prima philosophia, philosophy of origin, philosophy of consciousness, or transcendental philosophy. In his eyes these modes of thinking ontologically and epistemologically reduce the “nonidentical” to the self-same.”


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(de Vries, Minimal Theologies: 234.)

“Those who want to overcome the old established order in all its aspects cannot attach themselves to the disorder of the present, even in the sphere of culture. One must struggle and not go on waiting, in culture as well, for the moving order of the future to make a concrete appearance. It is its possibility, already present in our midst, that devalues all expression in known cultural forms. One must lead all forms of pseudocommunication to their utter destruction, to arrive one day at real and direct communication (in our working hypothesis of higher cultural means; the constructed situation). Victory will be for those who will be able to create disorder without loving it.” (Guy Debord, “Theses on Cultural Revolution,” cited in Tom McDonough (ed.), Guy Debord and the Situationist International Texts and Documents. Cambridge and London: The MIT Press, 2002: 65.)

“I ought to have a special hell for my anger, a hell for my pride—and a hell for sex; a whole symphony of hells! I am weary, I die. This is the grave and I’m turning into worms, horror of horrors! Satan, you clown, you want to dissolve me with your charms. Well, I want it! Stab me with a pitchfork, sprinkle me with fire! Ah! To return to life! To stare at our deformities!. And this poison, this eternally accursed embrace! My weakness, and the world’s cruelty! My God, have pity, hide me, I can’t control myself at all! I am hidden, and I am not. And as the Damned soul rises, so does the fire.” (Rimbaud, “A Night in Hell, quoted in Rimbaud Complete Works: 227.)

“Get up! Get moving! We’ve got to push on now! The division has broken through. If you don’t hurry, we’ll be caught in a trap, so get the hell up! We’re the last ones left.” (Sajer, The Forgotten Soldier: 252.)

“Someone took the glass out of his face. The man talked throughout, using an instrument he called a pickup to extract small fragments of glass that were not deeply embedded. He said that most of the worst cases were in hospitals downtown or at the trauma center on a pier. He said that survivors were not appearing in the numbers expected. He was propelled by events and could not stop talking. Doctors and volunteers were standing idle, he said, because the people


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they were waiting for were mostly back there, in the ruins. He said he would use a clamp for deeper fragments. “Where there are suicide bombings. Maybe you don’t want to hear this.” “I don’t know.” “In those places where it happens, the survivors, the people nearby who are injured, sometimes, months later, they develop bumps, for lack of a better term, and it turns out this is caused by small fragments, tiny fragments of the suicide bomber’s body. The bomber is blown to bits, literally bits and pieces, and fragments of flesh and bone come flying outward with such force and velocity that they get wedged, they get trapped in the body of anyone who’s in striking range. Do you believe it? A student is sitting in a café. She survives the attack. Then, months later, they find these little, like, pellets of flesh, human flesh that got driven into the skin. They call it organic shrapnel.” He tweezed another splinter of glass out of Keith’s face. “This is something I don’t think you have,” he said.” (Don deLillo, Falling Man: 16.)

“Joe Parkson: Sure, I was in the hospital, but I didn't go crazy. I kept myself sane. You know how? I kept saying to myself: Joe, you're the only one alive that knows what he did. You're the one that's got to find him, Joe. I kept remembering. I kept thinking back to that prison camp. One of them lasted to the morning. By then, you couldn't tell his voice belonged to a man. He sounded like a dog that got hit by a truck and left him in the street.” (Dialogue from Act of Violence, (1948), quoted in 1MDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0041088/quotes)

“recapitulated all his memories of childhood, The optimum wound profile. As part of a continuing therapy programme, patients devised the optimum wound profile. A wide variety of wounds was imagined. Psychotic patients showed a preference for facial and neck wounds. Students and filling station personnel overwhelmingly selected abdominal injuries. By contrast suburban housewives expressed a marked preocuupation with severe genital wounds of an obscene character. The accident modes which rationalized these choices reflected polyperverse obsessions of an extreme form.” (Ballard, The Atrocity Exhibition: 98.)

“’Show ‘em your feathers, quick!’ urged Lizzie.


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Fevvers, with a strange sense of desperation, a miserable awareness of her broken wing and her discolored plumage, could think of nothing else but to obey. She shrugged off her furs, and, though she could not spread her wings, she spread one – lopsided angel, partial and shabby splendor! No Venus, or Helen, or Angel of the Apocalypse, not Izrael or Isfahel…only a poor freak down on her luck, and an object of the most dubious kind of reality to her beholders, since both the men in the god-hut were accustomed to hallucinations and she who looks like a hallucination but is not had no place in their view of things…She was hesitant, uncertain, at first; but then her plumage-yes! it did! -her plumage rippled in the wind of wonder, their expelled breaths. Oooooooh!” (Angela Carter, Nights at the Circus, cited in Andrew Hock-Soon Ng, Dimensions of Monstrosity in Contemporary Narratives: 169.)

“The crowd was as restless as a dog. Someone announced that Death had been delayed by a derailment. It grew dark all at once. Finally, the judge called upon the expert alienist. It was he who, really and truly, sprang up through an invisible trap door of an invisible box. He had been sitting among the audience, which had not suspected him. He stood up and walked to the bar. He read his report to the members of the jury. From the winged report dropped such words as the following: “Unbalanced…psychopathy…unbalanced…splanchnic system…schizophrenia…unbalanced, unbalanced, unbalanced, unbalanced…equilibrist,” and all at once, poignant, bleeding, “the sympathetic nerve.” He did not pause: “…Unbalanced…semiresponsibility…secretion…Freud…Adler…Jung….secretion…” But the perfidious voice was caressing certain syllables, and the man’s gestures were struggling against enemies: Father, watch out on the left, on the right.” Certain words finally ricocheted on the perfidious voice (as in pig Latin words where you have to unscramble other words that may be naïve or nasty: edbay, oorday).” (Genet, Our Lady of the Flowers: 285.)

“The dog is war about crossing, the world best known to him are those streets further up the hill, and although he can see the man looking back as he descends the rue da Padaria, along which the walls of the rampart would have extended, centuries ago, as far as the Rua dos Bacalhoeiros, he does not dare to go on, perhaps the fear he now experiences is too unbearable as he recalls some terrifying events in the past, cats doused with cold water take fright, and dogs as well. The dog returns by the same route, returns to the Escadinhas de Sāo Crispim, waiting for someone to else to turn up.” (Saramago, The History of the Siege of Lisbon: 61.)


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“The members of an ambulance crew moved slowly through the crowd, using their gurney to clear the way. Sirens were blowing in the cross streets. The body had stopped burning by now and was still rigidly set in a seated position, leaking vapors and haze. The stink came and went with the wind. The wind was stronger now, stormbearing, and there was thunder in the distance.” […] “They covered the burnt body and wheeled it away, semi-upright, with rats in the street and the first drops of rain coming down and the light changing radically in the preternatural way that’s completely natural, of course, all the electric premonition that rides the sky being a drama of human devising.” (De Lillo, Cosmopolis: 101-103.)

“There were those who made something of the fact that a dog had lain the day before on the grass where the fire had been, had been chased away several times, and had always returned. But it is not difficult to understand that an animal found this place warmer than elsewhere.” (Foucault, Discipline and Punish: 6-7.)

“The entire dialectic which I have given you as an example under the name of the mirror stage is based on the relations between, on the one hand, a certain level of tendencies which are experienced—let us say, for the moment, at a certain point in life—as disconnected, discordant, in pieces—and there’s always something of that that remains—and on the other hand, a unity with which it is merged and paired. It is in this unity that the subject for the first time knows himself as a unity, but as an alienated, virtual unity. It does not partake in the characteristics of inertia of the phenomenon of consciousness under its primitive form, on the contrary, it has a vital, relation with the subject.” (Jacques Lacan, Seminar II, quoted in Alex E. Blazer, I Am Otherwise: The Romance Between Poetry and Theory After the Death of the Subject. New York, NY: Dalkey Archive Press, 2010: 180.)

Hymn to Beauty O Beauty! do you visit from the sky Or the abyss? infernal and divine,


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Your gaze bestows both kindnesses and crimes, So it is said you act on us like wine. Your eye contains the evening and the dawn; You pour out odours like an evening storm; Your kiss is potion from an ancient jar, That can make heroes cold and children warm. Are you of heaven or the nether world? Charmed Destiny, your pet, attends your walk; You scatter joys and sorrows at your whim, And govern all, and answer no man's call. Beauty, you walk on corpses, mocking them; Horror is charming as your other gems, And Murder is a trinket dancing there Lovingly on your naked belly's skin. You are a candle where the mayfly dies In flames, blessing this fire's deadly bloom. The panting lover bending to his love Looks like a dying man who strokes his tomb. What difference, then, from heaven or from hell, O Beauty, monstrous in simplicity? If eye, smile, step can open me the way To find unknown, sublime infinity? Angel or siren, spirit, I don't care, As long as velvet eyes and perfumed head And glimmering motions, o my queen, can make The world less dreadful, and the time less dead. (Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil: 44-45.)

“What we have to say to you is this. Liberty, equality and fraternity are at risk, and a frightful struggle may be joined in the name of this sacred motto for the sake of which you have twice endured martyrdom.


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The reaction against which you spoke a few days ago…grows in strength hour by hour. The Republic of Privilege, purblind handmaiden of royalty, rears up, threatening to block the road along which for three score years democracy has striven to advance by means of words, the pen, and the sword. A new social crisis is at hand: responsibility for it will fall on those who have provoked it. Thanks to the stupidity of some and the ill-wind of others, that February victory which should, from the humanitarian view point, have been the glorious culmination of our fathers’ labors will perhaps only be recalled in history as a passing breeze in the interval between two storms.” (Address voted by the Club de la Révolution to A. Barbès, its president; published in La Presse, 19 June 1848, quoted in Price, Documents on the French Revolution of 1848: 85-86.)

“The nineteenth century has in many ways satisfied and has in even more ways deceived the optimist….It has compelled him to transfer most of his hopes to the twentieth century….And now that the century has come! What has it brought with it at the outset? In France—the poisonous foam of racial hatred; ….in South Africa—the agony of a tiny people which is being murdered by a colossus….Hatred and murder, famine and blood….It seems as if this new century…were bent at the very moment of its appearance to drive the optimist into absolute pessimism…Death to Utopia! Death to faith! Death to love! Death to hope! Thunders the twentieth century….Surrender, you pathetic dreamer. Here I am, your long-awaited twentieth century, your “future.” --No, replies the unhumbled optimist: You—you are only the present.” (Leon Trotsky (1902), quoted in John G. Hutton, Neo-Impressionism and the Search of Solid Ground: Art, Science, and Anarchism in Fin-de-Siècle France. Baton Rouge and London: Louisiana State Press, 1994: 237.)

“Know what I think, guys? I think that if you think that the twentieth century was a goddamn horror show – two catastrophic world wars plus Korea and Vietnam plus assorted multimillionvictim genocides, purges, and pandemics plus the Cold War’s three-decade threat of nuclear apocalypse plus whatever other goodies. I’m forgetting to mention – then you ain’t seen nothing yet, pals, ‘cause the twenty-first is gonna be worse: no “infidel” city safe from jihadist nuking, ‘resource wars’ for oil and water as China and India get ever more prosperous and supplies run out, the ruin of the planet by overpopulation, the collapse of America’s economy when the dollar-bubble bursts, and right here in […] the sea level’s rising from global warming even as I speak, while the peninsula sinks under our feet and the hurricane season gets worse every year. So really, I mean: What the fuck?” (John Barth, The Development. New York, NY: Mariner Books, 2010: 25.)


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“Photo Journalist: This is the way the fucking world ends! Look at this fucking shit we're in, man! Not with a bang, but with a whimper. And with a whimper, I'm fucking splitting, Jack.” (Lines from Apocalypse Now: IMDB.)

NOT EVER

EVEN

WHEN

FLUNG

IN ETERNAL

CIRCUMSTANCES

AT THE BOTTOM OF A SHIPWRECK.” (Stéphane Mallarmé, “A Throw of Dice Not Ever Will Abolish Chance,” (1897), in Caws, Manifesto: 31.) (formatting is by the author.)

“But the main idea is the first one, staying alive. Canadians are forever taking the national pulse like doctors at a sickbed: the aim is not to see whether the patient will live well but simply whether he will live at all. Our central idea is one which generates, not the excitement and sense of adventure or danger which The Frontier holds out, not the smugness and/or sense of security, of everything in its place which the Island can offer, but an almost intolerable anxiety. Our stories are likely to be tales not of those who made it but of those who made it back – the North, the snowstorm, the sinking ship – that killed everyone else.” (Margaret Atwood, Survival, Toronto: Anansi, 1972: 32)

“I want to tell Canadians about how boring they are. “Canada is the dullest country in the world,” I write in the notes for my speech, “because it is the most conformist. “People may pretend to have liberal beliefs, I go on, but really they are an unadventurous lot who never dare


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care to sidestep bourgeois conventions. With the hauteur that can only spring from fourteen-year old innocence, I take these observations to be self-evident, because they are mine. And it doesn’t occure to me, of course, that my audience might be offended at being read such stern lessons; after all, I am simply telling the truth.” (Hoffman, Lost in Translation: 133.)

“Timber softened, and the wood Was changed to flesh, the curved prows turned to heads, The oars to toes and swimming legs, the sides Remained as sides; the keels that underlay The centre of the ship became a spine, The rigging soft sleek hair, the yards were arms, The colour sea-blue still, and in the waves They used to fear, they played their girlish games.” (Ovid, Metamorphoses, quoted in Fantham, Ovid’s Metamorphoses: 19.)

“This is the place. And I am here, the mermaid whose dark hair streams black, the merman in his armored body We circle silently about the wreck we dive into the hold. I am she: I am he.” (Adrienne Rich, “A Long Conversation,” in Alex B. Blazer, I Am Otherwise: The Romance Between Poetry and Theory After the Death of the Subject. Urbana-Champaign: Dalkey Archive Press, 2007: 75.)

“The old and the new, the liberal touch and the patriarchal one, fatal poverty and fatalistic wealth got fantastically interwoven in that strange first decade of our century.” (Nabokov, Speak, Memory: 30.)

“The picture of the broken world is a morbid symbol for the total ruin of all; it is a somber myth about the descent and the downfall of a spiritual world that falls into the material abyss. It


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is the myth of annihilation and pain; the myth of cosmogonial crisis and of cosmological failure; it symbolized the exile of the Jewish people, the exile of the physical cosmos, and the exile of the Divine Presence, known in Hebrew as Galut ha Shekhinah.” (Shimon Sholek, Kabbalah and the Art of Being. London: Routledge, 2001: 44.)

“The Pentecostal darkness: the sun shall be turned to darkness. To overcome the opposition of darkness and light, cleanliness and dirt, order and chaos; the marriage of heaven and hell. To seduce the world to madness. Christ is within the wall of paradise, which is the wall of the law of contradiction; and the destruction of the law of contradiction is the supreme task of higher logic.” (Cusanus cited in Cranz, “Saint Augustine and Nicholas of Cusa in the Traditions of Western Christian Thought,” quoted in Brown, Love’s Body: 242.)

“There will be computers for self-fulfilling prophecies for what will prophecy be but instant history diluted with tiered generalizations and a margin of terror, add half a databank of crowing achievement and six face-saving devices finely chopped. As for election results they will be divulged in less than no time by galloping vote projections so that the speedier the media the slower but surer will be the disenfranchising by disenchantment what, nine months of crap for three minutes of suspense? And what if the third millennium after the third world war refuse this confuturism, what if it predefer that the great deeds of men should after all be forgotten, whether Greeks or foreigners and, especially, the causes of the wars between them? For since the father of fibstory will be relegated with all his descendants to the planet’s garbage-satellite and pollute the ionosphere we’ll only have the world as bookend to look to.” (Christine Brooke-Rose, Amalgamemnon, Champaign and London: Dalkey Archive Press, 2010: 113.)

“He must not be consoled. He coldly searched for a way of destroying the false burial of the unknown dog. He bent down, and, solemn and calm, he unburied the dog with a few simple movements. The dark form of the dog at last appeared whole and unfamiliar with earth on its eyelashes, its eyes open and crystallized. […] The man then looked around him and up to the skies, pleading for a witness to what he had done. And, as if that were still not enough, he began to descend the slopes, heading toward the intimacy of his home.” (Lispector, “The Crime of the Mathematics Professor,” in Lispector, Family Ties: 146.)


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“Leonard Diamond: I know his name. The name of a man who will pick up a phone and call Chicago and New Orleans and say "Hey Bill, Joe is coming down for the weekend. Advance him fifty thousand," and he hangs up the phone and the money's advanced, protection money. A new all night bar opens, with gambling outside city limits. A bunch of high school kids come in for a good time. They get loaded, they get irresponsible, they lose their shirts. Then they get a gun, cause they're worried, they want to make up their losses. And a filling station attendant is dead with a bullet in his liver. I have to see four kids on trial for first degree murder. Look at it. First degree murder, because a certain Mr. Brown picked up a phone.” (Dialogue from The Big Combo, (1955), from 1MDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047878/quotes.)

“Eventually, in July 332, after some months of unrelenting effort, Alexander succeeded in breaching the Tyre fortification. He synchronized the assault with diversionary attacks elsewhere on the circumference, dropped bridges from his assault ships into the breach and poured troops into the city. A massacre ensued. Some 8,000 Tyrians died in the siege, presumably most by atrocity, since Macedonian losses throughout were only 400. The 30,000 Tyrians who survived were sold into slavery.” (Keegan, The Mask of Command: 75.)

The Sea Marke “Aloofe, aloofe; and come no neare, the dangers doe appeare; Which if my ruine had not beene you had not seene; I only lie upon this shelfe to be a mark to all which on the same might fall, That none may perish but my self.” (John Smith quoted in Brown, Apocalypse –And/Or – Metamorphosis: 176.)

“What a strange caricature of the maternal womb this sunless hole is, a waiting room for my impending execution, for I am well aware that I will be condemned to death for reasons of implosion. I look out of a small, inaccessible square opening high up in the wall with a new intensity and an emotion that I now accept: I catch every single shade of color in the sky at


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nightfall, and I “devour with my eyes” every detail of this beautiful clear sky turning imperceptibly pink, mauve, jade green, this time recognizing Latin tranquility: on the other side of my mocking window (the side lost forever), Goethe beckons me once more.” (Robbe-Grillet, Ghosts in the Mirror: 131.)

“This means that the contemporary is not only the one who, perceiving the darkness of the present, grasps a light that can never reach its destiny; the contemporary is also the one who, dividing and interpolating time, is capable of transforming it and putting it in relation with other times. He is able to read history in unforeseen ways, to “cite it” according to a necessity that does not arise in any way from his will but from an exigency to which he cannot not respond. It is as if this invisible light that is the darkness of the present cast its shadow on the past so that the past, touched by this shadow, acquired the ability to respond to the darkness of the now.” (Giorgio Agamben (Translated by David Kishick and Stefan Pedatella), Nudities. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2011: 18-19.)

“’Only the poor, only through God, only the people you wipe your feet on, the poor in spirit, old men carrying their fathers and philosophers weeping in the dust. America perhaps, Don Quixote – ‘ he was still brandishing the sword, it was that sabre really, he thought, in María’s room – ‘if only you’d stop interfering, stop walking in your sleep…” (Lowry, Under the Volcano: 372-373.)

“Violence is an ever-expanding category in our contemporary critical climate. “Stretched beyond its former clearly demarcated boundaries, meaning ‘the use of physical force’ (a characterization still to be found in standard English dictionary definitions), violence now includes such phenomenologically elusive categories as psychological, symbolic, structural, epistemic, hermeneutical and aesthetic violence,” Beatrice Hannssen writes. Rather than attempt to provide an exhaustive definition, I shall for now maneuver around one important distinction between trauma and violence: whereas the psychoanalytic, literary view of trauma posits the subject as site and victim of an epistemological violence, the term “violence” generally designates a relation between subjects, indicating a more encompassing, energetic and relational structure involving intersubjective relations and multiple positionalities. As a category for literary analysis, violence enables a consideration of the relationship between poetry, history, and critique by exploring how a text both occupies and opens up for the reader and a range of positions toward the violence that is represented, including those of executioner, accomplice, and bystander.”


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(Debarati Sanyal, The Violence of Modernity: Baudelaire, Irony, and the Politics of Form. Baltimore: The John Hopkins University Press, 2006: 28.)

“America was lost, the scabs ruled everything, the skyscrapers of chrome would never budge, but Canada was here, infant dream, the stars high and sharp and cold, and the enemies were brittle and easy and English.” (Cohen, The Favourite Game: 76.)

“It was a very young boy’s story, he knew, when he had finished it.” (Ernest Hemingway, The Garden of Eden, quoted in Wolfe, Animal Rites: 126.)

“Child on the carousel.—The platform bearing the docile animals moves close to the ground. It is at the height which, in dreams, is best for flying. Music starts, and the child moves away from his mother with a jerk. At first he is afraid to leave her. But then he notices how brave he himself is. He is ensconced, like the just ruler, over a world that belongs to him. Tangential trees and natives line his way. Then, in an Orient, his mother reappears. Next, emerging from the jungle, comes a treetop, exactly as the child saw it thousands of years ago—just now on the carousel. His best is devoted: like a mute Arion he rides his silent fish, or a wooden Zeus-bull carries him off like an immaculate Europa. The eternal recurrence of all things has long become child’s wisdom, and life a primeval frenzy of domination, with the booming orchestrion as the crown jewels at the center. As the music slows, space begins to stammer and the trees to come to their senses. The carousel becomes uncertain ground. And his mother appears, the muchhammered stake about which the landing child winds the rope of his gaze.” (Benjamin, “One Way Street,” in Selected Writing: Volume 1: 464-465.)

“THEN IT WAS THAT THE GREEKS DEVISED THE PLAN OF BUILDING THE WOODEN HORSE…HIDING IN IT, IN ORDER TO EFFECT THEIR ENTRY INTO THE CITY, THINKING IT WAS AN OFFERING TO THE GODS. THUS THE GREEKS, EMERGING FROM THE HORSE FINALLY TOOK THE CITY IN THE TENTH YEAR OF THE SIEGE.” (Homer (Illustrated by Alex A. Blum), The Iliad. New York: Gilberton Company, 1966.)


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“I once saw a blind horse: nature had erred. It was painful to feel him so restless, aware of the slightest sound caused by the breeze amongst the grasses, with his nerves ready to bristle in a shudder running throughout his alert body. What does a horse see so that not seeing his kind leaves him as if having lost his very self? It’s just that when he looks, he sees outside himself what is inside himself. He is an animal who expresses himself through form. When he sees mountains, meadows, people, the sky—he takes dominion over men and over nature itself.” (Lispector, “Dry Point of Horses,” in Lispector, Soulstorm: 107.)

“[…] Nine less two, Seven Were the diggers, seven sang, danced, the paces Seven, Seven Saviours went to heaven – Their tongues, hands, feet, eyes, ears and hearts, each face as […] […] The imagination…And the seven came To horses seven (of wood – who will? – kissed their stomachs) Bent knees as these rose around them – trot – trot – Spoke: words, words, we are words, horses, manes, words.” (Zukofsky, “A”: 42.)

“But in the meantime I would like to raise the question whether in the end the whole issue of the positive and the negative is inhabited by a pseudos, by something overproportioned that for the sake of its abstractness allows what is most important to slip away. After all, utopia is the concrete rather than being itself a general theory or a concise instruction for praxis, and every truly saturate contemplation, to which conceptual being certainly belongs, is the guarantee of


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precisely what is ground up between the principles. Telling you, the artist, about this means carrying owls to Athens [Eulen nach Athen tragen] who begin their flight at dusk.” (Theodor W. Adorno, Minima Moralia, quoted in Richter, Thought-Images: Frankfurt School Writers’Reflections From Damaged Life. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2007: 157.)

“In vain did the chiefs of the enemy sound a retreat. The bulk of the assailants, who were massed between the rampart and the entrenchment, could neither advance nor recede. Very few succeeded in joining their companions. Fatigue alone stayed the defenders; it was no longer combat but a massacre.” (Viollet-Le-Duc, Annals of a Fortress: 58.)

“Oh! there in the middle of the dance of Death Leaps into the red sky a great mad skeleton Carried off by his impetus, like a horse rearing. Oh! viola qu’au milieu de la danse macabre Bondit dans le ciel rouge un grand squellete fou Emporté par l’élan, eomme un cheval se cabre.” (Arthur Rimbaud, “Bal des pendus,” quoted in Poulet, Exploding Poetry: 128.)

“Anti-pragmatists [and anti-postmodernists and anti-relativists] fool themselves when they think that by insisting … that moral truths are ‘objective’ – are true independent of human needs, interests, history – they have provided us with weapons against the bad guys. For the fascists can, and often do, reply that they entirely agree, that moral truth is objective, eternal and universal … and fascist … Dewey made much of the fact that traditional notions of ‘objectivity’ and ‘universality’ were useful to the bad guys, and he had a point.” (Richard Rorty quoted in Jenkins, At the Limits of History: 52-53.)

“[…] negative dialectics seeks the self-reflection of thinking, the tangible implication is that if thinking is to be true—today, in any case—it must also think again