Cover image for Notes on the death of culture : essays on spectacle and society
Notes on the death of culture : essays on spectacle and society
Vargas Llosa, Mario, 1936- author.
Uniform Title:
Civilización del espectáculo. English
First American edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2015.
Physical Description:
227 pages ; 22 cm
"A provocative essay collection that finds the Nobel laureate taking on the decline of intellectual life. In the past, culture was a kind of vital consciousness that constantly rejuvenated and revivified everyday reality. Now it is largely a mechanism of distraction and entertainment. Notes on the Death of Culture is an examination and indictment of this transformation-- penned by none other than Mario Vargas Llosa, who is not only one of our finest novelists but one of the keenest social critics at work today. Taking his cues from T. S. Eliot-- whose essay "Notes Toward a Definition of Culture" is a touchstone precisely because the culture Eliot aimed to describe has since vanished-- Vargas Llosa traces a decline whose ill effects have only just begun to be felt. He mourns, in particular, the figure of the intellectual: for most of the twentieth century, men and women of letters drove political, aesthetic, and moral conversations; today they have all but disappeared from public debate. But Vargas Llosa stubbornly refuses to fade into the background. He is not content to merely sign a petition; he will not bite his tongue. A necessary gadfly, the Nobel laureate Vargas Llosa, here vividly translated by John King, provides a tough but essential critique of our time and culture"--

"New essays attacking the precipitous decline of contemporary culture by the Nobel Laureate Mario Vargas Llosa"--
Metamorphosis of a word -- The civilization of the spectacle -- A brief discourse on culture -- Forbidden to forbid -- The disappearance of eroticism -- Culture, politics, and power -- The opium of the people -- Final thoughts.
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