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Peter Burke, 16 September 1982

Le Roi-Machine: Spectacle et Politique au Temps de Louis XIV 
by Jean-Marie Apostolidès.
Les Editions de Minuit, 164 pp., £4.50
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Le Portrait du Roi 
by Louis Marin.
Les Editions de Minuit, 300 pp., £5.60
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... Louis XIV can hardly complain of being neglected by posterity. The stream of books about him shows no sign of running dry. Even so, the simultaneous appearance of two studies of Louis from Les Editions de Minuit is a little surprising: did the right hand know what the left hand was publishing? What is more, both books are concerned with the King’s public image, rather than his policies or his private life ...

Viscounts Swapping Stories

Michael Wood: Jacques Derrida, 1 November 2001

The Work of Mourning 
by Jacques Derrida, translated by Pascale-Anne Brault.
Chicago, 272 pp., £16, July 2001, 0 226 14316 3
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A Taste for the Secret 
by Jacques Derrida and Maurizio Ferraris, translated by Giacomo Donis.
Polity, 161 pp., £13.99, May 2001, 0 7456 2334 4
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... Paul de Man, Max Loreau, Jean-Marie Benoist, Edmond Jabès, Joseph Riddel, Michel Servière, Louis Marin, Sarah Kofman and Emmanuel Levinas. Six of the pieces are published here in English for the first time. The editors, Pascale-Anne Brault and Michael Naas, are sensitive to what might be ‘impolitic’ or ‘morbid’ about such a collection, but ...


Malcolm Bull, 23 March 1995

Nicolas Poussin, 1594-1665 
by Pierre Rosenberg and Louis-Antoine Prat.
Réunion des Musées Nationaux, 560 pp., frs 350, September 1994, 2 7118 3027 6
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Nicolas Poussin 
by Anthony Blunt.
Pallas Athene, 690 pp., £24.95, January 1995, 1 873429 64 9
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Nicolas Poussin 1594-1665 
by Richard Verdi, with an essay by Pierre Rosenberg.
Zwemmer, 336 pp., £39.50, January 1995, 0 302 00647 8
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Roma 1630: Il trionfo del pennello 
edited by Olivier Bonfait.
Electa, 260 pp., July 1994, 88 435 5047 0
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Poussin before Rome 1594-1624 
by Jacques Thuillier.
Feigen, 119 pp., £40, January 1995, 1 873232 03 9
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The Expression of the Passions 
by Jennifer Montagu.
Yale, 256 pp., £35, October 1994, 0 300 05891 8
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L’Ecole du silence 
by Marc Fumaroli.
Flammarion, 512 pp., frs 295, May 1994, 2 08 012618 0
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To Destroy Painting 
by Louis Marin, translated by Mette Hjort.
Chicago, 196 pp., £31.95, April 1995, 0 226 50535 9
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... now partly obscured from the viewer, has become the sole focus of the shepherds’ attention. As Louis Marin argues in To Destroy Painting, the Paris Arcadian Shepherds invites us to identify with the shepherds who are trying to decode the inscription as we are trying to decode the painting. But they and we do not necessarily have the same response: the ...

Jacques Derrida

Judith Butler: Commemorating ‘one of the greatest philosophers of the 20th century’, 4 November 2004

... in 1983, Michel Foucault, who died in 1984, and a host of others, including Edmund Jabès (1991), Louis Marin (1992), Sarah Kofman (1994), Emmanuel Levinas (1995) and Jean-François Lyotard (1998). In the last of these essays, for Lyotard, it is not his own death that preoccupies him, but rather his ‘debts’. These are authors that he could not do ...

What’s the problem with critical art?

Hal Foster: Rancière’s Aesthetics, 10 October 2013

Aisthesis: Scenes from the Aesthetic Regime of Art 
by Jacques Rancière, translated by Zakir Paul.
Verso, 272 pp., £20, June 2013, 978 1 78168 089 6
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... on the other, to theoretical expositions of the ‘classical episteme’ by Michel Foucault and Louis Marin. (In The Order of Things Foucault defines this episteme as one in which words intersect with representations to provide a ‘spontaneous grid’ for knowledge, as in the botanical classifications of Linnaeus.) The description of the shift from ...

In and Out of the Panthéon

Thomas Laqueur: Funerals, politics and memory in France, 20 September 2001

Funerals, Politics and Memory in Modern France 1789-1996 
by Avner Ben-Amos.
Oxford, 425 pp., £55, October 2000, 0 19 820328 4
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Monumental Intolerance: Jean Baffier, a Nationalist Sculptor in Fin-de-Siècle France 
by Neil McWilliam.
Pennsylvania State, 326 pp., £58.95, November 2000, 0 271 01965 4
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... new death rituals. This magnificently domed Neoclassical building was designed, in the reign of Louis XVI, by the architect Jacques-Germain Soufflot. (It sits at the head of the eponymous rue Soufflot, which runs from the Place du Panthéon to the Luxembourg Gardens.) It was intended to be a church dedicated to Ste Geneviève, but it wasn’t consecrated as ...

Consider the lions

Peter Campbell, 22 July 1993

The House of Gold 
by Richard Goy.
Cambridge, 304 pp., £60, January 1993, 0 521 40513 0
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The Palace of the Sun 
by Robert Berger.
Pennsylvania State, 232 pp., £55, April 1993, 0 271 00847 4
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... Around 1421 Marin Contarini – a member of one of the ruling Venetian families – began building a house on a site across the Grand Canal from the Rialto. This new palace replaced another, on the same site, which he had bought from his wife’s family. More than twenty years later the scaffolding came down to reveal the most resplendent domestic Venetian-Gothic façade of them all ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘Blue Jasmine’, 24 October 2013

Blue Jasmine 
directed by Woody Allen.
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... to have got exceptionally lucky. She meets a handsome young diplomat with a vast new house in Marin County, tells him a pack of lies about herself – her late husband was a surgeon, they had no children, she is a practised interior designer – and is on her way to marrying him when a chance encounter with Ginger’s ex-husband, still resentful about ...

Touchez-pas à mon de Gaulle

Douglas Johnson, 19 February 1987

De Gaulle. Vol III: Le Souverain 
by Jean Lacouture.
Seuil, 870 pp., frs 145, August 1984, 2 02 006969 5
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... La France Libre,’ de Gaulle wrote to Jean Marin, who’d been his companion in London from the summer of 1940 and was now the Director of the Agence France-Presse, ‘that was the finest thing we ever did.’ He believed this. Many of his closest associates believed it too. But as the leader of la France Libre (and la France Combattante), de Gaulle was hardly a free man ...

One French City

Lydia Davis, 12 August 2021

... the statue of Venus which was found in the Roman theatre and which Arles reluctantly gave to King Louis XIV, so that it was taken away to Versailles, and walk straight out the other side, through what used to be the main entrance, onto the Plan de la Cour, which, though narrow and short, and small now, compared to the place de la République, used to be the ...

The Man in the Clearing

Iain Sinclair: Meeting Gary Snyder, 24 May 2012

... coast of North America to Europe or Asia. ‘But coming from Asia is easier.’ In 1889 Robert Louis Stevenson, in the final chapter of a wandering life, settled on a hillside above Apia, the Samoan capital. He bought three hundred acres of jungle, and built a two-storey timber house. He was 39 and accompanied by his American wife, Fanny, her two ...

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