Friday, January 12, 2007

Back 2 Business

After the inanities of the two previous posts (although, as always, they contain a lot of truth too; which part is truth, which is fiction you decide. As The Spaceape already stated: "the truth lies somewhere between a lie and a fiction"), I decided to reinject some sérieux into my mental household.

With that in mind I went out and bought my first ever German book. Over the last few years I think I have succeeded in mastering the English and French languages up to a point that I can express myself, in writing as in speaking, quite fluently in both. And I have always promised myself that it would not stop there. Before I leave this vale of tears I will at least be able to express myself fluently in Spanish and German. And if there is still some time left after that, as I am pretty sure there will be, I would like to acquire at least some notions of Portugese, Italian , Russian and Japanese too. Chinese will be for the next life, because it is well known that you will never truly master Chinese unless you start when you are very young. But hey, maybe if I limit myself to pidgin Chinese I might actually arrive there too.

German comes first, because last week I grabbed, rather incidentally, a Dutch translation of Elfriede Jelinek's 'Lust' and even through the bias of the translation I was totally astonished by the language that she employed. It was a kind of writing I had not read before. Very poetic, but also cool, very hard and laconic at the same time. Fascinating stuff, as is her always a little dark and perverted subject matter too. She asks questions about authority and those are incredibly important questions to ask. As Zizek frequently states, but Orwell already knew: authority and the control of sexuality are narrowly intertwined.

And then I thought: "Why not read it in German? You might learn something." And thus German entered the book case. It is only a start of course, but I cannot wait until the day that I will be able to read Kafka in German, as I hope one day to read Tolstoi in Russian. One can only understand the soul of a people if one understands its language, not?


OMC said...

Fuck Zizek, gotta go with the original nuttah: Wilhelm Reich - Massenpsychologie Des Faschismus.

Fire in the Mind said...

yeah, read about him, fascinating figure. as usual scandalously treated by the americans...