Clive James

I've only read a few pieces here & there by Clive James, but if this is an accurate review, Cultural Amnesia looks to be worth both the price & the heft:
In many cases the portrait of the individual in question is simply a launching pad for the author’s free-associative musings, which tend to spiral around several recurrent themes: the shattering legacy of Nazism and Communism, the two totalitarian movements that overshadowed the 20th century; the dangers posed by ideologies that try to reduce the world’s dazzling complexity to simplistic formulas; and the preciousness and fragility of humanism as a cultural ideal.
Humanism has gotten a good & sometimes deserved drubbing from post-modernism & from scientism, but what the hell else have we got? I aspire to a capacious & generous humanism -- I'll do without the capital H.

Author: jd

Joseph Duemer is Professor of Literature Emeritus at Clarkson University in northern New York state. His most recent book of poems is Magical Thinking from Ohio State University Press. Since the mid-1990s he has spent a good deal of time in Vietnam, mostly Hanoi. He lives with his wife Carole & five terriers (four Jack Russells & one Patterdale) on the stony bank of the Raquette River in South Colton.

1 thought on “Clive James”

  1. You may have already heard about this, but Clive James is doing a special video series to tie into the book.

    It’s 3 x 15 minute web-only films, and the first is up tomorrow on Coco Chanel & the Nazis, Albert Camus and Mao. You might enjoy it.

    It should appear here: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/clivejames by tomorrow.

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