XCVII- (Re)leituras - Crise no Castelo da Cultura - Das estrelas para as telas, of Moisés Lemos Martins - Comments by André Bandeira

This book, written by one of the most important Academics, in Portugal, in the Sociology of Media, is probably the best and most far-reaching report, on the subject, I ever read in my mother tongue. Nevertheless, the author should not long for any litany on such a controversial theme. He describes himself as an hermeneut, because, all his career, he has mostly dealt with texts. Of course he deals with the Media themselves, too, at the receiving end, as citizen and expert in the Politics of Media regulation. He spends half of the book, with a philosophical foundation, and one recognizes there the influence of the French school of «Cultural Studies», as well as the shadow of Bourdieu, who used to boast studying philosophical subjects with a sociological imprint. That is what I don't know: where does Sociology begin and reflection ends? Probably nowhere. Everything is Sociology and being aware of it, that is Media. The saying he hits the most, all the book long, that is the depiction of Giorgio Agamben of a society «with means and without ends». All things considered, in a blend of french and american thinkers, where famous names (who didn't got tainted by Bricmont and Sokal's «Intelectual Impostures») surface with their famous latest sayings but we remain in a situation of flux. At this point, one cannot not avoid transliterating the books's subtitle as follows: from moviestars to starring screens. In other words (maybe Shakespeare's) we stared too much to a starsystem, looking for what was lying under our noses. Therefore, we cannot unveil the traps and poisons of any Mediasystem, without harvesting a completely new language, and a new set of references, way far from the sociological buzz. Nevertheless, the author holds to a very sound ethical base, he calls «judeo-christian». I guess it is because of that, he manages to point out to what all this media orgy is about: melancholy and, as a consequence, it leads to the noon day demon, called, in Latin, «acedia». Too much media means too much harassment and that's it, no matter in broadcasting or in social media. At some point, I do not agree to the author: he still believes in a restoration of Democracy, by means of Rhetoric. That was a well mediatic myth, taken from the classical Democracy. In a World populated by 7 billion souls, Democracy evolves to what it once was: a mediation of throngs of citizens, who arogate to rule as judging, even on each individual soul and who simply don't understand a word of those who live outside the city's walls. And I mean the walls we build and carry every step of our daily way. Yes, we are a building race, the same who built Sodoma and Gomorrah. There should have been, in those two cities too, a neverending blend of sicophants and sophists, before Lot was advised to walk away fast and never look back.


XCVI (Re)leituras - Ni Droite, Ni Gauche, da Zeev Sternhell, Romantisme fasciste, da Paul Sérant, Fascismo Monarchico, da Francesco Perfetti e Mussolini - una Biografia, da Renzo de Felice - Commentari di André Bandeira

Ho riletto questi quatro volumini, in cerca di un ricordo esatto in torno al senzo del «Futurismo». Una indagine veloce sul «Futurismo» lascia chiaro che ci sono vari tipi, doppo il «Manifesto futurista», apparso sulle pagine dal «Le Figaro» in 1909, e sottoscrito da Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, natto nella «barca rossa» di Alessandria d'Egitto e figlio di un ricco uomo d'affari. In testa, ci sono due tipi, notevolmente il russo, protagonizzato da Mayakovsky, e l'italiano, protagonizzato da Marinetti. Si può vedere che il Futurismo è una buona occasione intteletuale di provare che strema destra e strema sinistra sono cuccioli della stessa lupa. Ed, infatti, la paùra che brucia nel fuoco del palcoscenico spinge la fretta di nascondere questa genealogia commune. Nonostante,anziché esposta alla luce, quella è una verità alla mettà. Il programa del Partito Futurista, cotto in un'epoca dove soldati, arditi delle trincee della Prima Guerra Mondiale, avevano l'inspirazione per diventare artisti (perché le classi aggiati fornivono volontari per il fronte) parlavano di «uomini nuovi», di un Parlamento di tecnici, di uguaglianza tra uomini e donne, di suffraggio universale, di Guerra come igiene della società. È vero che il Fascismo si assomiglia molto al Comunismo, però il Fascismo è morto appena nato, mentre che il Comunismo è passato della Guerra civile universale, alla rivoluzione permanente, per finire nel colpo di stato senza fine. Il Fascismo aveva un personnagio superiore nel pensiero, però magari scivolante nella morale: Giovanni Gentile. Invece, Gentile era un liberale e, per lui, il Fascismo era una transizione per una societá liberale oppure, in somma, una modernizzazione del'Italia e la vendetta del Risorgimento riuscito. Secondo loro stessi, i futuristi erano «Contra Gentiles» e la migliore Arte prodotta del Fascismo veniva da Ezra Pound, chi era norteamericano e magari un neo-classico, e Pirandello, chi era un romantico. Il Futurismo è inferiore à Pirandello, nella Letteratura, ed inferiore al Cubismo, o al Surrealismo, nella Pittura e la sculptura. L'Architettura fascista è neo-classica, non è futurista. Che voglio dire con tutto questo? Che il futurismo aveva una onestà degli atti, parecchio all'imaturità delle idee, mentre che il Fascismo ed il Comunismo se ne servirono, molto coscenti de quello a che venivano. È il Futurismo colpevole? Certo che è. Idee che si svolgono nel'eter degli effeti propagandistici non sono idee, sono aggressioni. E la violenza è mala consigliera della Belleza. Oggi si è attualizato, nel senso del'«atto puro» di Gentile, il Governo dei tecnici, però l'idea è venuta dei futuristi. Ci sono idee che anzichè sottolineate da agressioni, non hanno niente a vedere con gli atti. Anzitutto si nascondono in dietro per non essere sfidate.


XCV - (Re)leituras -- Ressurreição, by Machado de Assis, comments by André Bandeira

Superb novel. Easy to read, the first relevant novel of the Godfather of brazilian literature, combines a XXth Century style with a romantic content. But is it that romantic? Of course not. It tells the story of a die-hard bachelor who leaves his lover because he cannot proceed with a relationship more than six-months and finds himself being pushed to a new relationship with a beautiful widow, thanks to the artful widow's brother. Once the acquaintace has been made, love labour comes all from the widow, both in building it up, as well as in cutting it out. When the heavy bachelor has already the marriage marked in the calendar, he opens an anonymous letter, in the middle of a tricky conversation with a high-society intrigant, who apparently dropped by for a veteran's advice on his current mistress. One never gets to know that it was the intrigant who wrote the letter. Never mind: the content is more important than the container, the narrative never gets arrested by the characters. The letter says that, if the bachelor consents in marrying the beautiful widow, he will die as her late husband, counting the cheats till the top of the Golgotha. The letter unfolds anonymous but the warning goes straight to bachelor's discernment and he briskly cancells the marriage. Machado de Assis ends up, undoing the intrigue, but giving the final plot to a widow, who, despite standing for her love, still decides to live the rest of her life, alone. She could never marry a beloved, who fireworks in second thoughts. The narrator concludes in saying that the bachelor wanted to benefit from the happiness around him and long, intimate relationships, at the same time. Therefore, the bachelor was «essentially» marked as unhappy, despite being named Félix. He never emerged from his mistrust because he could never get contentment in the other's wedding crowns, especially those ones weaved by women. He wanted to be loved the way he felt to be loved and not the way society wanted him to deserve love. That is why he ressurected indeed, from the dead at heart, but he lost both trust and the sweet memory of illusions while in the grave of untouchability. This means that the romantic bachelor never managed to fool himself long enough,in order to live beyond death with something similar to life. This is very brazilian and not romantic at all: in the land of love, you get a beautiful widow and you don't ask questions about the past. If you want to count real love, you are not entitled to enjoy the pleasures of love. Anything else --that is what the social superman Machado de Assis means -- would irreversibly show the nudity of women who are beautiful, but who widowed while one was bacheloring around, pricking and never being pricked. This is not social critique. This is a thrilling cynicism, so thrilling as the limpid Assis's prose. So limpid as fresh water springing, or as a razor blade, glazing in the middle of a tropical wrackle.