Who would win in a knife fight between all the philsophers. Unlike the United States Presidency, Philosophy has been going on for thousands of years, so instead of 44 contestants there are a whopping 89. Don’t be afraid of the numbers, for I guarantee you won’t get bored; philosophers are a very interesting bunch of people, and the most rewarding part of this post has been researching their lives and finding out how crazy they all are. This will be a wild knife fight. [more inside]
Camus' Web. by Jacob Eugene Horn [McSweeney's Internet Tendency]
Wilbur the pig was unhappy. In the two short months that he had been alive, Wilbur was certain he experienced the peaks and valleys of happiness and despair. When he was but a runt, he was free to prance about, but now that he was under the care of Farmer Zuckerman he was confined to a simple pig pen.
The FBI files on being and nothingness. "From 1945 onwards, J Edgar Hoover’s FBI spied on Camus and Sartre. The investigation soon turned into a philosophical inquiry…" [Via]
By Heart is a series on The Atlantic's website where writers speak about their favorite passages, each illustrated by Doug McLean. Here are a few of the entries so far: Stephen King on two opening lines, Hanan Al-Shaykh on One Thousand and One Nights, Susan Choi on The Great Gatsby, Jessica Francis Kane on Marcus Aurelius, Fay Weldon on The Myth of Sisyphus, Adam Mansbach on Montaigne, Ayana Mathis on Osip Mandelstam, Anthony Marra on Jesus' Son, and Mohsin Hamid on Haruki Murakami.
Rethinking "Mother died today": Translating a work requires a surprising amount of thought to avoid leading readers into contextual pitfalls, and The Stranger is no exception. "Within the novel’s first sentence, two subtle and seemingly minor translation decisions have the power to change the way we read everything that follows."
Why do people hate mimes? First you should get to grips with the history then get into a mime version of 9/11. Follow it up with an interpretation of Camus's The Outsider and Daniel Reyes's Mimes of the Caribbean. End your lesson with Mime World.
Kruschen Salts and Camus' Stranger: "A bit later, for want of anything better to do, I (Mersault) picked up an old newspaper that was lying on the floor and read it. There was an advertisement of Kruschen Salts and I cut it out and pasted it into an album where I keep things that amuse me in the papers." Dave Till has collected some other advertisements that Meursault might like.
Friday Flash Fun -- This is one of those Sisyphussian games where the point is to push a certain object towards a goal, but once you reach the goal (and advance to the next level), you find you have to do it all over again. As Camus says,
The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man's heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy.You be the judge.
"I have realized that the traditional omelet form (eggs and cheese) is bourgeois. Today I tried making one out of a cigarette, some coffee, and four tiny stones."
Jean-Paul Sartre - A Tribute to Camus A eulogy for a man we all knew well...