By Eliot Weinberger
Across the world acclaimed as the most cutting edge writers this present day, Eliot Weinberger has taken the essay into unexplored territories at the borders of poetry and narrative the place the single rule, in line with the writer, is that each one the knowledge needs to be verifiable.With An Elemental factor, Weinberger turns from his celebrated political chronicles to the timelessness of the topics of his literary essays. With the knowledge of a literary archaeologist-astronomer-anthropologist-zookeeper, he leads us via histories, fables, and meditations in regards to the 10000 issues within the universe: the wind and the rhinoceros, Catholic saints and folks named Chang, the Mandaeans at the Iran-Iraq border and the Kaluli within the mountains of latest Guinea. one of the thirty-five essays integrated are a poetic biography of the prophet Muhammad, which used to be praised via the London occasions for its "great good looks and grace," and "The Stars," a reverie on what's up there that has already been translated into Arabic, chinese language, Hindi, and Maori.
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Translated by Nicholas Heron Notes 1. Franz Kafka, The Trial, trans. Breon Mitchell (New York: Schocken Books, 1998), p. 3. qxd:Andy Q7 K 5/9/08 08:27 Page 27 27 2. The Trial, p. 14. 3. The Trial, p. 224. 4. Franz Kafka, ‘He: Aphorisms from the 1920 Diary’, in The Great Wall of China and Other Short Works, ed. and trans. Malcolm Pasley (London: Penguin Books, 1991), p. 110; translation slightly modified. 5. The Trial, p. 213; translation slightly modified. 6. The Trial, p. 94. 7. Franz Kafka, The Castle, trans.
Agamben, Idea of Prose, p. 41. Agamben, Idea of Prose, p. 41. Giorgio Agamben, Idee der Prosa, trans. D. Leupold and C. Härle (Munich: Hanser, 1987), p. 21. ‘All language communicates itself in itself; it is in the purest sense the “medium” of the communication,’ Walter Benjamin, ‘On Language as Such and the Language of Man’, trans. E. Jephcott, in Selected Writings, vol. 1 (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 2004), p. 64. Martin Heidegger, ‘Words’, in On the Way to Language, trans. J. Stambough (New York/Evanston/San Francisco/London: Harper & Row, 1971), p.
The idea of prose is not an idea among others but the idea itself. The idea is always the idea of prose. 3. It is impossible to remember the idea (of prose), for the idea does not signal the presupposition of a past. Rather, it is the immemorial and unforgettable thing, or the nothingness that precedes both the present and memory, and that only turns into some thing, into a being or a substance, when it is transformed into a presupposition. A passage in ‘Idea of the Immemorial’ reads as follows: ‘The immemorial, which skips from memory to memory without itself ever coming to mind, is, properly speaking, the unforgettable.
An Elemental Thing by Eliot Weinberger