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Reflections of a working writer and reader



Presque vu XXI

Thirteen reasons why you should read Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys.


Neocons on a cruise. Johann Hari, in The Independent, sets sail with America’s swashbuckling neocons:

From time to time, National Review – the bible of American conservatism – organises a cruise for its readers. I paid $1,200 to join them. The rules I imposed on myself were simple: If any of the conservative cruisers asked who I was, I answered honestly, telling them I was a journalist. Mostly, I just tried to blend in – and find out what American conservatives say when they think the rest of us aren’t listening.


This sounds like an interesting read; Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. The story of a woman who decided to reverse the assumptions and choices in her life and become someone closer to the person she wanted to be. Starting off by eating her way around Rome . . .

4 Responses to “Presque vu XXI”

  1. Lee says:

    Reason no. 14: I cite it in Corvus.

    jb says: (sigh) more reading . . .

  2. Robert says:

    A chilling little read in The Independent, John. But the roots of sentiments like “The civilised countries should invade all the oil-owning places in the Middle East and run them properly” lie in Manifest Destiny, and the roots of that American movement lie with selfsame attitudes of the British Empire. While American neocons may seem more unvarnished than their Tory counterparts, bigotry hardly limits itself to one side of the pond.

    jb says: Hi Robert. While the article concentrates on a specific group I was most struck by the attitudes than by the nationality of those quoted. Thanks for reminding us, though. I’ve come across similar attitudes to this in every country I’ve visited and among all creeds and races and it always tastes just as nasty.

  3. Pearl says:

    (waves vote placard) another vote for Eat Pray, Love. The first chapter I found irksome as I recall but pressing past that (but not skipping it because it does give some context of person) it was quite memorable and useful.

  4. Robert says:

    Agreed, John, the general attitudes are a global phenomenon. I just think sometimes English journalists can seem so shocked at radical American views while conveniently forgetting the origins of such views – or perhaps because it is a latent memory, it becomes all the more horrifying.