"I cannot live without books." -- Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

"The Map and the Territory" by Michel Houellebnecq


"The Map and the Territory" by Michel Houellebecq

His best novel.  The themes are basically the same, but Michel Houellebecq tells the tale again with great energy and in a large tongue in cheek manner.  On one level it is about the rise of an artist who doesn't really want to participate in the art market.  He has nothing against it, but his character is not one where he follows the market place.  Yet he's extremely successful in what he does.  The other textual parts are Houellebecq's fascination with what people do on their 'free' time - the need to be a tourist in 21st Century life as well as the issue of aging, fame, and the beauty of maps.  in many ways, of all his novels, this is the most Situationist like.  Houellebecq is for sure not Guy Debord, but he shares his sense of love (disgust?) at looking at culture and what that means to an artist/writer as well

There are major plot turns that makes this narrative into a policer.  The twists in the plot makes this a really fun read.  "The Map and the Territory" is the best novel of the year and its January 3, 2012.

Old BBC interview in English

Iggy Pop and Michel Houellebecq

"Paris" by Michel Houellebecq and Bertrand Burgalat

Houellebecq pop singer 4:33

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