Last omnivorous readings | Babelia

Last omnivorous readings | Babelia


1. Crisis

I needed a break after finishing the last part of Crash; how a decade of financial crisis has changed the world (Review), the monumental and demanding study of Adam Tooze about the biggest financial crisis that my generation has experienced, and that already appears in my list of the most important books published in 2018. Only a decade after the crash, Tooze, liberal in the sense that the Anglo-Saxons give to the term, and celebrated author of The flood; the great war and the reconstruction of the world order, 1916-1919, analyzes with rigor of historian and tools of economist the crisis and its tremendous political consequences, demonstrating to what extent the European and North American financial systems were deeply ill and expounding on the consequences of the collapse: from the Greek outbreak (2010) to the Brexit, from the repercussions in China to the unstoppable explosion of populisms.

Last omnivorous readings

Tooze analyzes the causes for which the economic crisis and the democratic deterioration in the United States brought about "a reaction of furious nationalism" that had as consequence the arrival to the power, against all prognosis, of a real estate tycoon and media star in fascistoid ways that had managed to convince a vulnerable electorate with the most infallible of populist recipes: "Put America first. Our creed will be Americanism, not globalism. "

Last omnivorous readings

The reading rest to which I referred was obtained thanks to Portrait of a murderer (Sunrise), a little conventional (the "who did it" is revealed to us soon) christmas crime of Anne Meredith published in 1933, in full Age of Gold of the criminal novel. The kind literary tradition of the Christmas story (invented by Dickens and developed in almanacs and magazines for the whole family), in which the feelings of goodwill typical of the time of Advent were exploited, soon turned around to become his nemesis : Christmas was also an area conducive to crime; The corpses of the murdered ones lurked next to the tree or under the branch of mistletoe. Anne Meredith was one of many pseudonyms (such as Anthony Gilbert, used to conceal her genre from readers) of the prolific Lucy Beatrice Malleson (1899-1973), a long-forgotten author. The argument of Portrait of a murderer It is very simple: Adrian Gray appears dead one Christmas day in his isolated mansion, to which he had invited all his children. The murder and the family reunion allow the author not only to become entangled in the psychology of the criminal, but also in interpersonal tensions. To me so much intrigue that reflotates brought to mind the novels of Ivy Compton-Burnett, one of my Edwardian weaknesses.

2. Requiem

When The last Tango in Paris (UTP) premiered at the New York Film Festival (1972), critics Pauline Kael wrote in The New Yorker that the event could be a milestone for the history of cinema, comparable to what in 1913 marked the premiere of Spring consecration for the music. I am not very fond of those apodictical enthusiasms, but I can say that UTP is one of the films that have marked me the most. I carried out my duel for Bertolucci in two times. First, listening to the soundtrack composed by Gato Barbieri (1932-1916) and directed by Oliver Nelson: I still feel a centipede running down my spine when I hear the groan of that sax, torn and compact, that underlines the rhythm of ballad, tango or waltz, the melancholy despair of what is on the screen.

Then, I will pay tribute to my way by rereading for the umpteenth time the prodigious Theme of the traitor and the hero (in Ficciones, 1944), of Jorge Luis Borges, a very brief and complex anti-narrative full of intertextual references in which the Italian filmmaker was inspired to The strategy of the spider (1970), one of your key movies. It was not the only literary work in which Bertolucci was inspired: Dostoevsky (The double, for Partner), Moravia (The nonconformist), Bowles (The protective sky) or Gilbert Adair (Dreamers) They are the first "inspiring" authors that come to mind. But the story of Borges, as strange as a brown dwarf (read Brown dwarfs, of María Cruz Gálvez, in Libros de la Catarata) and as difficult to imagine as the nationalization of Amazon, is my favorite.

3. Survivor

I have no doubt that Julián Viñuales (junior) is a true survivor in the stormy ocean of the independent edition. Kindred of Julián Viñuales Solé, a fundamental figure in the seventies and eighties edition (he was in charge of Salvat at the time of boom of the fascicle and the kiosk book), the "young" Viñuales has not stopped putting one foot (and, when they left him, both) in the stirrup of the most renovating edition. Summing up and simplifying: gave shape and catalog since the beginning of the millennium to Global Rhythm, a label very attentive to popular music and the most groundbreaking narrative.

Last omnivorous readings

Then he got (2013) in Malpaso, where he worked with Malcolm Otero and Patricia Escalona until the bloated globe of entrepreneur Bernardo Domínguez made ¡pum! and was forced to leave by feet. And, not chastened, now it returns with its own stamp, Kultrum Books (eye, "kultrum" is a kind of drum), in which, from the beginning, its brand is distinguished. His new editorial, greeted with enthusiasm in social networks, also starts with books about popular music and those who make and process it. Of the two published so far I'm left with Victim of my spell, the wonderful autobiography of the pianist, singer and social activist Nina Simone (Eunice K. Waymon by his real name). Good luck and sailing, Viñuales.

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