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Incidents (The French List) Paperback – September 15, 2010
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From Library Journal
Barthes (1915-80) was one of France's most influential literary theorists, whose works, such as S/Z ( LJ 8/74), The Pleasure of the Text ( LJ 6/1/75), and Writing Degree Zero (Farrar, 1977), had a profound impact on generations of Anglo-American critics. This recent volume, first published in France after the author's death, includes notes on a trip to Morocco in 1969, a brief essay on the Parisian disco Le Palace, and a lengthier "intimate" journal, Soirees de Paris , begun in 1979. The theme as such is desire, specifically gay male desire. In these texts we don't have the renowned writer whom we discreetly know to be gay, as Leo Bersani notes on the book's cover, "but the gay man who happens to be a writer." It is enough to send one back for a rereading of A Lover's Discourse: Fragments ( LJ 8/78). In his essay, critic Miller uses his intellectual/erotic crush on Barthes, whom he never met; his imaginings of Barthes; fragments of Barthes's texts; and incidents from his own life to explore the theoretical and sometimes not so theoretical issues of contemporary gay male life. In the process we get a wonderful, humorous reading of Barthes that sends the mind leaping in hundreds of directions while repeatedly resting on the relationship between gay male identity and the literary text. Both of these books are recommended for all academic collections and for public libraries with strong literary or gay studies collections.
-Brian Kenney, Pace Univ. Lib., Manhattan Campus, New York
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Incidents is replete with prowling boys, and Barthes is completely frank in describing his desires. (The book is, after all, a journal.) Even if Incidents fails to get you in a thoughtful mood, it should get you in a cruisy one. And there's always the something in between, which is the place that Barthes seems most often to be: the boys supply him a spark of provocation that spurs him to thought, but thought is something more successfully pursued alone. Samaddar's photos, though only a handful of them are overtly erotic, are a perfect accompaniment to the text on that front, stolen glances that capture the sensuality of fleeting encounters."--Bookslut.com (Bookslut)