[lit-ideas] Re: The life of Walter Benjamin, not very well told

  • From: Omar Kusturica <omarkusto@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 17 Mar 2014 13:10:14 -0700 (PDT)

Compare with the death of Alexander Alekhine:

While planning for a World Championship match against Botvinnik,[66] Alekhine 
died in his hotel room in Estoril, Portugal on March 24, 1946. The 
circumstances of his death are still a matter of debate. It is usually 
attributed to a heart attack, but a letter in Chess Life magazine from a 
witness to the autopsy stated that choking on meat was the actual cause of 
death. At autopsy, a three-inch long piece of unchewed meat was discovered 
blocking his windpipe.[79] Some have speculated that he was murdered by a 
French "death squad". A few years later, Alekhine's son, Alexander Alekhine 
Junior, said that "the hand of Moscow reached his father".[80] Canadian 
Grandmaster Kevin Spraggett, who has lived in Portugal since the late 1980s, 
and who has thoroughly investigated Alekhine's death, favors this possibility. 
Spraggett makes a case for the manipulation of the crime scene and the autopsy 
by the Portuguese secret police PIDE. He believes that Alekhine
 was murdered outside his hotel room, probably by the Soviets.[81]


On , Omar Kusturica <omarkusto@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
It wasn't a suicide, but then he was a Soviet spy. This looks like some 
elementary school textbook.


On Monday, March 17, 2014 8:37 PM, Robert Paul <rpaul@xxxxxxxx> wrote:
Review of a book on Walter Benjamin in today's Wall Street Journal


'Benjamin is here as much a flesh-and-blood representative of
the modern as its theoretician. Modernism was all about the peripheral, the
ephemeral, the accidental, the transient. It was about plurality, not
singularity; ambiguity instead of certainty. Walter Benjamin traveled this
off-road, and his thought was consistent with his experience. He was an
incessant gambler, a serial adulterer, an experimenter with drugs and a refugee
in every sense. In discarding traditional intellectual categories and seeking
new kaleidoscopic sources of inspiration, he showed parallel urges in his

This paragraph alone should win its authors some sort of prize.

Robert Paul

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