Romania, still rotten to the core (and gore)
I have received some recent issues of Romanian cultural magazines from my colleague, Radu Bogdan, and I discovered that the intellectual impostor Sorin Antohi is still around, writing articles books, participating in conferences about nonsense, as usual in Romania.
This probably shouldn’t be surprising, as it is well known that in Romania there is a constant, unchanging bunch of people – friends, comrades– who publish, and call themselves philosophers, political scientists, cultural anthropologists, or whatnot. They are the cultural establishment, and Antohi used to be one of them, and it seems friendship defeats honesty.
What I find surprising is how the nonsense these people, in general, write could catch these foreign academics’ attention. Remember that Antohi had a high position at CEU, at a research institute dealing, among other things, with „symbolic geographies”, and other Continental nonsense like this.
But, again, I shouldn’t be surprised. I remember I bought a book by Levinas, Totality and Infinity, in the early years of my philosophy education, because I was curious what the heck is all this Levinas fashion about. I could read the first two pages, after which, literally, I felt like vomiting, so I stopped reading it. Now I see the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy has an article about Levinas’s „philosophy”. So, you see, I shouldn’t be surprised.
One final thought. I very much hope there is a Purgatory where people like Levinas are forced by God to explain each and every sentence of their books, so that the resulting explanation is acceptable for publication in Analysis. That would be the best punishment, the greatest torture for them. Here is just a random passage of nonsense:
The exteriority of being does not, in fact, mean that multiplicity is without relation. However, the relation that binds this multiplicity does not fill the abyss of separation; it confirms it. In this relation we have recognized language, produced only in the face to face: and in language we have recognized teaching. Teaching is a way for truth to be produced such that it is not my work, such I could not derive it from my own interiority. In affirming such a production of truth we modify the original meaning of truth and the noesis-noema structure, taken as the meaning of intentionality.
Emmanuel Levinas, Totality and Infinity, 295