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  • Currently Reading
    Started Deconstructing Postmodernist Nietzscheanism: Deleuze and Foucault by Jan Rehmann several days ago
  • Currently Reading
    That's something that has always fascinated me. I'll take a look.T Clark

    I've been interested in the Mongol's since I was a boy. Nearly finished with the book. The first third focuses mostly on the origins of the Mongol Empire via Chinggis Khan but then the narrative shifts primarily towards the Jochi Ulus (the Golden Horde) and the socio-economic impact and development it had on the world.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Unfortunately I'm far more cynical and predict that he'll serve no jail time. That said, I'm still leaning towards Biden in winning the election.
  • Currently Reading
    The Horde: How the Mongols Changed the World by Marie Favereau
  • Currently Reading
    Revolutionary Jews From Spinoza to Marx: The Fight for A Secular World of Universal and Equal Rights by Jonathan Israel
  • Currently Reading
    India: A History by John Keay
  • Currently Reading
    A History of Japan by R.H.P Mason and J.G Caiger
  • Currently Reading
    A History of China by John Keay

    Also been slowly reading the full One Thousand and One Nights
  • Currently Reading
    Yeah months and months later some prose still sticks with me.
  • Currently Reading
    Theory as History: Essays on Modes of Production and Exploitation by Jairus Banaji
  • Currently Reading
    The Early Chinese Empires: Qin and Han by Mark Edward Lewis
  • Currently Reading
    Time for my annual reading list 2023 edition. Far fewer books read this year than in prior years, no doubt a result of having read several books that were 700+ pages, in addition to simply having less time on my hands. Next year would like to delve into Asian history, so any recommendations are welcomed. Happy New Year everyone!

    • Liberty and Property: A Social History of Western Political Thought from the Renaissance to Enlightenment by Ellen Wood (reread)
    • Citizens: A Chronicle of the French Revolution by Simon Schama
    • The New Spirit of Capitalism by Eve Chiapello and Luc Boltanski
    • 1848: Year of Revolution by Michael Rapport
    • The Persistence of the Old Regime: Europe to the Great War by Arno J. Mayer
    • Caravaggio: The Complete Works by Sebastian Schutze
    • Mariners, Renegades and Castaways: The Story of Herman Melville and the World We Live In by C. L. R. James
    • The Long Twentieth Century: Money, Power and the Origins of Our Times by Giovanni Arrighi
    • Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
    • Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
    • A Mountain to the North, a Lake to the South, Paths to the West, a River to the East by László Krasznahorkai
    • The Myth of 1648: Class, Geopolitics and the Making of Modern International Relations by Benno Teschke
    • A World at Arms: A Global History of World War II by Gerhard L Winberg
    • Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
    • A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict by Mark Tessler
  • Currently Reading
    Massive props to you dude. That book, after it very rough first 240 pages, just goes nuts. Utterly crazy, fun and brilliant!Manuel

    Finished yesterday, quite the trip, in the hallucinatory sense.

    A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict by Mark Tessler
  • Currently Reading
    Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
  • Israel killing civilians in Gaza and the West Bank
    Holy shit Israel Tells U.N. that all of North Gaza (over 1M people) has 24 Hours to Move South
  • Israel killing civilians in Gaza and the West Bank
    I brought up the statistics to support my statement that a really, really large percentage of Palestinians do not want a two state solution. Obviously children and infants aren't counted in that, because they don't vote and they can't decide anyway.

    For a two state solution to be viable, Palestinians have to want it.
    flannel jesus

    The Israeli's have long abandoned the idea of a two-state solution, the Israeli government including Netanyahu, explicitly so. The idea of a two-state solution has not been serious for decades.
  • Israel killing civilians in Gaza and the West Bank
    Majority of Palestinians support Hamas, which lists in its charter a goal of eradicating the Jews entirely.flannel jesus

    40% of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank are 14 years old and under. 60% are 24 and under. The oldest of this cohort would have been seven years old when Hamas came to power. Besides the fact that supporting a political organization shouldn't warrant death sentence or justify depriving an individual of fundamental human rights or any other form of dehumanization, as I stated early in this thread, what precisely is the onus of responsibility assumed by a territory comprised primarily of minors and young adults?
  • Israel killing civilians in Gaza and the West Bank
    This idea that Israel wants to push Palestine into the sea is a projection of what Palestine wants to do to Israel. If Israel wanted to fully annihilated Palestine, they could, but they don't. On the other hand, if Palestine could annihilate Israel, they would, but they can't.Hanover

    This is a typical argument whereby Palestine is being penalized for what they hypothetically could do, (regardless of any actual objective) while the Israeli government is excused for what they actually do. The Israeli government (and dutiful citizens) has been systemically cutting off population centers in the West Bank by creating illegal settlements that are off limits to Palestinians. Is this not a form of "annihilation" by kosher means?
  • Israel killing civilians in Gaza and the West Bank
    No serious critic of Israel is going to condone Hamas' targeting of civilians, but understand that the actions committed by Hamas - so often labeled as terrorist - have also been committed twentyfold by the Israeli government, which has indiscriminately killed Palestinian civilians, including children and the elderly, or knowingly murdered journalists and medics with impunity. According to UN's OCHA, from 2008-2023 (excluding the October 2023 Conflict) Palestinian causalities exceed Israeli by 21x, while Palestinian injuries exceed Israeli injuries by nearly 24x. It is equally unserious for discussion to exclude this essential context, in addition to the horrific apartheid conditions that Israeli has imposed including severe restriction on travel, an air, sea and land blockade, which placed restrictions on the goods and services that can enter including medical goods and services, food, water and energy. This is an undeniable form of quotidian violence. Furthermore, of the two million Palestinians approximately half are under 19 years old, with over half the entire population living under the poverty line - a direct result of Israel's blockade. What precisely is the onus of responsibility assumed by a territory comprised primarily of minors?
  • Currently Reading
    A World at Arms: A Global History of World War II by Gerhard L Winberg
  • Currently Reading
    It has always surprised? confused? me how often the Treaty of Westphalia is referenced (blamed?), 375 years later, in relation to current international relations. Let us know what you think when you're done.T Clark

    The book was very interesting and certainly worth a read. While the book's main thrust is to revaluate the Treaty of Westphalia's historical relevancy in modern International Relations in contrast to the (then?) dominate theories of IR, primarily Neorealism and Constructivism, Teschke goes beyond the Baroque period, analyzing Feudal and Absolutist modes of production and property relation in order to establish the Treaty of Westphalia as a outcome of continental European Absolutism, i.e. pre-modern. Modernity, or rather the modernizing process of IR, according to Teschke, begins with the uneven and combined development of the nascent agrarian capitalist Britain as it struggles with continental European powers. In addition to critiquing Neorealism and Constructivism, Teschke examines theories of Capitalist origin and development, siding with Political Marxism, which at the time of publication was at the apex of it's orthodoxy. He does a very good job of outlining Political Marxist viewpoints and contrasting them with World-Systems Theory, and the former's relationship with alternative International Theories. However, here Teschke, as with other Political Marxists (e.g. Wood, Brenner), falls into the theoretical limitations and historical narrowness of Political Marxism, as expounded by Neil Davidson, Alexander Anievas and Kerem Nisancioglu et. al. Certainly well worth reading.
  • Currently Reading
    The Myth of 1648: Class, Geopolitics and the Making of Modern International Relations by Benno Teschke
  • Currently Reading
    I also heard it will ruin you. Curious.Noble Dust

    Just finished it and the answer is yes.

    A Mountain to the North, a Lake to the South, Paths to the West, a River to the East by László Krasznahorkai
  • Currently Reading
    Heard this one is great. Been on my To-Read for a while.fdrake

    It's fantastic, the prose is breathtaking at times.
  • Currently Reading
    Finished Don Quixote a few weeks back.

    Over halfway through Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Any guesses how much bail the judge will set for Seditionist-Traitor-Rapist1 in Fulton County, Georgia?180 Proof

    Just got back from vacation, looks like 200K, I would have guessed 100K
  • Currently Reading
    Conspiracy Against the Human Race - Thomas Ligotti
    The Trouble With Being Born - Emil Cioran
    Nihil Unbound - Ray Brassier
    fdrake

    Hell yes
  • Currently Reading
    Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
  • Currently Reading
    Very cool! I'd heard that the quite long film version of Satantango was actually very well made and well received, but I've yet to see it.

    I didn't know Werckmeister Harmonies existed, nor that it was an adaptation of the novel. I'd think that Melancholy of Resistance would make a better movie than Satantango, so I might check it out. Thanks for the heads up.
    Manuel

    After being mostly unavailable Werckmeister Harmonies has a new 4K restoration with a limited theatrical release around the United States. Not sure where you live, but I would recommend seeing it in theaters if possible. Otherwise, it should be out in blu ray sometime this year I imagine. However, unlike Satantango, Werkmeister does not cover the entire book from which it's based.

    Satantango has an excellent 4K restoration that was released on blu ray a few years back. The runtime is daunting but I highly recommend you attempt to view it in one sitting (obviously with pee breaks as nature demands). It's how Tarr wishes it was viewed, and the runtime itself is part of the film's overall atmosphere and mood. It's one of my favorite films, would love to see it in theaters one day.
  • Currently Reading
    Just finished The Melancholy of Resistance - it took longer than I would have liked, I lost a bit of focus towards the last 3rd of the book, with the exception of the concluding chapter.Manuel

    You might be interested to know I just saw Bela Tarr, Laszlo Krasznahorkai's cinematic collaborator, in-person in NYC on Monday in a very rare US appearance (his last visit to the states was 12 years ago). He introduced 4 of his movies, followed by a Q&A, which included Werckmeister Harmonies, which is based on Krasznahorkai's The Melancholy of Resistance, and he helped write the screenplay. He signed my DVD of Satantango! Very friendly (and pretty funny!) man.
  • US Election 2024 (All general discussion)
    My fairly incautious guess, at this point, is thatDeSantis beats Trump in the primary, the latter forms his own independent party sabotaging the Republican vote in the general and Biden cruises into another four terms.Maw

    lol what a dumbass
  • Currently Reading
    Don Quixote might be up next
  • Currently Reading
    The Long Twentieth Century: Money, Power and the Origins of Our Times by Giovanni Arrighi
  • Currently Reading
    Mariners, Renegades and Castaways: The Story of Herman Melville and the World We Live In by C. L. R. James
  • Currently Reading
    Caravaggio: The Complete Works by Sebastian Schutze
  • Currently Reading
    The Persistence of the Old Regime: Europe to the Great War by Arno J. Mayer
  • Currently Reading
    Just finished The Melancholy of Resistance - it took longer than I would have liked, I lost a bit of focus towards the last 3rd of the book, with the exception of the concluding chapter.

    I can only compare it to Satantango, his only other novel I've read. It's hard to pick one, without spoilers, it seems to me that Melancholy is richer in general content than Satantango, and yet, and yet, the way the ending of Satantango went, tuned it from a decent book to a complete masterpiece, essentially focusing on a simple, yet very powerful philosophical idea/literary trick.

    I struggled less with Satantango, and I felt it was somewhat more coherent, but again, Melancholy was richer in plurality of ideas... I suppose that Satantango's execution was just too good, so I'd give it the edge.

    How does Baron Wenckheim's Homecoming compare with these two works?

    I'll probably read one or two easy novels, then go back to a challenging one, then on to Baron - it requires some effort.

    Any general thoughts?
    Manuel

    Melancholy of Resistance and Satantango are my two favorite books of Krasznahorkai, I'm not sure if I could pick my preference between the two. The concluding chapters for both are sublime. Baron Wenckheim's Homecoming was his only work I didn't fully enjoy. I think it was overly long. I do also recommend Seiobo There Below, which is composed of a number of shorter stories, and War & War. I also loved Chasing Homer which incorporated a music element via QR code. Very interesting. If you enjoy film, and how can anyone not, I recommend his collaborative work with director Bela Tarr.
  • Currently Reading
    1848: Year of Revolution by Michael Rapport
  • US Election 2024 (All general discussion)
    Let's see in 2024 if you are a fortuneteller, Maw.ssu

    we'll see, my DeSantis 2024 stock is decreasing week by week although it's also not clear what Trump's future holds.