Language, Truth and Logic

languagetruthlogic

(by A. J. Ayer) It is a pleasure to read Ayer’s demolition of metaphysics, even though it leaves an arid philosophical landscape. Written in 1936, a time when perhaps we might have done with a small dollop of silly spirituality, Ayer has the cracking lines:  ‘Our charge against the metaphysician is not that he attempts to employ the understanding in a field where it cannot profitably venture, but that he produces sentences which fail to conform to the conditions under which alone a sentence can be literally significant.  Nor are we ourselves obliged to talk nonsense in order to show…

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Klute

November 5, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classic Film, CRIME, Drama Film, FILM, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS |
klute

(dir. Alan J Pakula) (1971) Bree Daniels (Jane Fonda) aspires to act.  John Klute (Donald Sutherland) is a hick who comes to N.Y. to find his missing friend, who may have availed himself of Bree’s services.  Together, they make a strange town-and-country team, each taming the other. This very nifty thriller has a fine look and feel to it. The ‘hooker with a heart of gold’ is a (venerable) Hollywood cliché but Jane Fonda’s performance gives you a real person. Amongst the rest of a fine cast, Charles Cioffi as the sinister boss is a standout.

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I Shall Bear Witness

klemperer

(by Victor Klemperer) Despite some confusing Anne Frank with a Nazi (see: Rijksmuseum moments), her diary is mandatory reading and so should be this diary of German Jewish academic, Victor Klemperer. He lived in Germany throughout the Nazi reign and this volume, covering 1933 to 1941, reveals the incremental march to holocaust. Each little step led to the next and so on, quickening in pace: May ’33: Klemperer can still lecture in Romance languages and literature at Dresden but he complies with a ‘request’ to no longer conduct exams; by May ’35, he is dismissed from his post; by October…

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The Information

November 5, 2014 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Fiction, THUMBNAIL REVIEWS, WRITING & LITERATURE |
the informaiton

(by Martin Amis) A glittering specimen of that great archetype, the literary revenger’s tale.  Richard Tull toils in vain on his indifferent and overlooked novels – friend Gwyn Barry, at the same time, produces fraudulent, flatulent pulp and is venerated and enriched. Tull decides to ignore the sage words of Richard Nixon when he resigned in disgrace and despair: “others may hate you, but those who hate you don’t win unless you hate them, and then you destroy yourself.” Amis scores a direct hit here:  As his fraud’s best-seller sequel, Amelior Regained, is ‘barbarically plain’, this literary revenger’s tale is…

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I Like You

Image courtesy of the second funniest, creepiest hospitality book of all time - The Weber Cookbook.

Image courtesy of the second funniest, creepiest hospitality book of all time - The Weber Cookbook.

(by Amy Sedaris) Indubitably the creepiest, funniest book on hospitality ever written.    

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