By E. M. Cioran
During this selection of essays and epigrams, E.M. Cioran provides us photos and evaluations—which he calls "admirations"—of Samuel Beckett, Jorge Luis Borges, F. Scott Fitzgerald, the poet Paul Valery, and Mircea Eliade, between others. In alternating sections of aphorisms—his "anathemas"—he offers insights on such themes as solitude, flattery, self-importance, friendship, insomnia, track, mortality, God, and the entice of disillusion.
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Extra resources for Anathemas and Admirations
Most countries in the world are not contemplating reversions to socialism. The arguments of this book, taken alone, cannot determine which side is correct in the American political debates over government funding of the arts. Rather, I wish to challenge the common premise of cultural pessimism behind both sides. Funding critics argue that the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) is corrupting American culture, while funding advocates claim that eliminating the NEA would critically damage American culture.
I concur with Robert Hughes, who notes that sev32 The Arts in a Market Economy eral hours of American television provide the best argument against market-supplied culture. The inﬂuence of the television market also has had some consequences for other cultural media, such as motion pictures. Today a considerable percentage of the proﬁts from a movie come from the sale of television rights. Moviemakers, to some degree, have shifted their attention away from more specialized moviegoers to the more general television audience.
Forster published his last novels in the 1920s, even though he did not die until 1970. “I have nothing more to say,” was his explanation. 23 New innovations do not always eclipse older, more established artistic forms, but they do inevitably change them. Outside competition shakes up older forms and spurs ingenuity. Renaissance sculpture communicated the idea of depth perspective to painters, jazz crept into the rhythms of classical music, and movies have sped up the pacing of the best-selling novel.