One of the ringleaders, a tailor, was hung for this attempt. The normal punishment for high treason was hanging, drawing, and quartering—hanging almost to the point of death, disemboweling, and dismembering. Matthew Wren, Bishop of Norwich, who had been zealous in the persecution of Puritans, was another. In , after what was evidently a flagrantly unfair trial by Parliament, Laud was beheaded on Tower Hill.
In the poems here, and in various others by Ronsard, we have love poems in which the context of ordinary ongoing daily life is present without strain—an adolescent lying in bed late, women sitting beside the fire spinning. Aussi pour recompense une haleine puante, Une glaire espessie entre les draps gluante, Un oeil have et battu, un teint palle et desfait.
And in return, a stinky breath, Goo like egg-white between sticky sheets, A sunken eye, a pale and wan complexion. Show what a base pleasure grips her all night. And the awareness of the body, even when unverbalized, may still be there in the relatively abstract classical tragedies of Corneille and Racine. But much was lost when the robust French classicism of the Renaissance was chastened into neo-classical propriety, and an important aspect of French Romanticism was the restoration of corporeality.
And a free spirit. Whenever I pull out the dildo, the end is covered in my cum. I forget where I acquired the Voices version of the poem, but it seems to me superior to the one that is generally printed. I mean, who needs a tacked-on moralizing couplet when the three stanzas have spoken so powerfully for themselves? It helps fill that gap that appears when one wonders what ordinary people back in that time were really like, given their heightened theatricality in the plays.
There were of course large differences in social structures and the behaviours that they required. But some of the intensities, particularly where questions of power, social order, marriages as adjuncts to politics, and religion were concerned, were probably confined to a fairly small minority. And in a number of the broadsides, the relationships between men and women at the level here was not one of masters and slaves. Has Margery, or whatever her non-classical name might be, simply written him off as a hopeless nerd?
The kinds of things that go on in traditional ballads, which mostly turn out tragically, are another matter, of course, another side of the sex coin. By the sound of it, Phillida, if of a practical turn of mind, could go further and fare worse. I love his taking pride in Doll splashing milk on him and Winifred playing with his nose, making him feel like one of the lads. Hyder E. Rollins Cambridge U. For this misrepresentation, censorship of the press rather than personal animosity of the author is, no doubt, responsible.
The poem, regardless of its accuracy, seems to me a moving piece of political writing displaying a good deal of sympathy for the sixty-six-year-old Raleigh. It had obviously been a major case. This curiosity is in volume 1 of The Roxburghe Ballads , ed. Charles Hindley , the introduction to which begins:. The Collection of Ancient Songs and Ballads, written on various subjects, and printed between the years MDLX and MDCC, and now known as the Roxburghe Ballads , consists of three volumes in folio, and embraces some thirteen hundred broadsides mostly in Black Letter, and are, with but few exceptions, all in a very good state of preservation.
So, between and The costumes in the woodcut illustrations seem Elizabethan or early Stuart. Apart from removing the capitalization of all but obvious proper names, and tweaking the spelling of a few words that would otherwise be mispronounced e. To judge from the final stanza, the kind of medley that we have here is what a street-singer might offer, maybe as an aid to advertizing his wares or skills. Some of the material may come from other broadsides. But could it, with a typo, be Jove here? The offender would merely be forced to sit in a strong chair the "cucking-stool" outside their house and would sometimes be carried around the town on it for people to stare and otherwise frown upon them.
The editor, L. Martin, reports that:. Herrick often assured himself that his work would bring him great fame, though perhaps with slow returns at first. In fact after the publication of his poems in he had no glory and very little attention for over years viii. There are over fourteen-hundred poems there, including over eight-hundred epigrams, all mixed together within the two general categories of secular and much smaller religious. Over and above changing taste, an unusual amount of work would have been required of readers trying to get their bearings there and taking, perhaps, the more or less classical epigrams as the true voicings of the poet, with a resultant lessening of attention to other kinds of poems.
Nor, given the variousness even among the religious poems, is there any obvious Herrick Story, any straightforward progression from, say, hedonism to austerity. He seems to have quit poetry for good after the collected poems. He was not an intellectual or a political writer, and his sympathies were with the losing side in the escalating struggle between King and Parliament.
The year before the book appeared, he was shut out from employment as a cleric for refusing to take the equivalent of a loyalty oath to the new government. The culture of the Commonwealth was not hospitable to the writing of epigrams like his, dependent as they were on the at times amused enjoyment of sophisticated readers and auditors. He was an exemplary craftsman, even when the results are not especially interesting. And bid the world goodnight. How many lie forgot In vaults beneath? And piece-meal rot Without a fame in death?
Pillars let some set up, If so they please Here is my hope, And my Pyramides. So I copied it out for inclusion in A New Book. A shorter, neater, and emotionally simpler rewrite of the poem done when and by whom? And the biographical information about an actual Lady Anne Bothwell is a distracting and intrusive irrelevance for my purposes. The poem is Anywoman speaking. Another Web page contains the first four stanzas, slightly tweaked, of the Watson version. The opening reads:. Baloo, my babe, lie still and sleep; It grieves me sore to see thee weep.
When thou art merry, I am glad;, Thy weeping makes my heart full sad. A thirteen-stanza version is in Francis James Child, ed. A bit of texture is lost here and there. But curse not him; perhaps now he, Stung with remorse, is blessing thee: Perhaps at death; for who can tell Whether the judge of heaven or hell, By some proud foe has struck the blow, And laid the dear deceiver low. Some of the stanzas are identical with Watson, but there are changes in the sequence and some tweaks. Grierson and G. Bullough , with no glossary. The greater inclusiveness of which Fowler speaks in his introduction seems in places to consist of finding marginal figures who are doing the same kind of art-respectable thing as better-known ones, but less distinctively.
The facsimile broadsheet text online seems an improvement, at least where intelligibility is concerned, though no doubt it has its own problems for expert eyes. Among its virtues is that the names of individuals and places are italicized, though not until I did a tweak the titles of tunes. There would have been no uncertainty for hearers and readers at the time. The poem, like lots of other New Book ones, is there to be enjoyed if one feels like it, even if, since this is partly a foreign language, with lacunae.
In contrast to the more common aabccb narrative stanza, the balancing of which permits of a steady advance, we have here each time, a three-line surge forward, and then a kind of check and diminuendo, which makes each stanza slightly more individual. I wish that I understood the poem at a literal level all the way through. But there are enough parts that I do understand for me to feel confident that the meaning is there for recovery in the others, enabling one to enter more fully into those recreated times and rituals and minds. Even if not absolutely the first outing for the stanza, it was the one that established it as the form that would be used by Ramsay, Fergusson, Burns, Stevenson, and no doubt others.
The facsimile is here: www. The text in W. Dixon ascribes the poem to Anonymous. Apart from a handful by Gay, Ramsay attaches no names to his picks. As is the aid provided by the great online Dictionary of the Scots Language. Ramsay makes the connection. For whatever reason, the poems in the General Books print-on-demand edition of it are not printed in stanza form, which shortens the book by over half and makes the page numbers in the Table of Contents useless.
It is on at least a couple of websites. And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many. Acts This powerful invective was directed at the notorious Frances Carr, Countess of Somerset — , the novelistic complications of whose life included seeking a marriage annulment on the grounds that she was still a virgin entailing a physical examination by a committee and a murder by poison, for which she and her second husband were imprisoned.
Judging from the refrain, the poem probably appeared around , when James I gave her a pardon. But as with various other satires, such as MacFlecknoe and Book IV of the Dunciad the allegorical figures take on larger-than-life lives of their own, thanks to a remarkable rhetorical richness. Here the anonymous writer has drawn on an intense creepy poem by Horace involving a Neapolitan witch, with snakes braided in her hair, engaged with her minions in a plot to bury a page up to his neck in a graveyard, with food set tantalizing out of his reach, so that his liver will dry up as he starves to death, and be used later for spells.
The insistences towards the end that there be no celebrations of her release from confinement, and the expressed hope that supernatural retribution will catch up with her, have the kind of intensity evoked in the later 20th-century by figures like Myra Hindley and Karla Homolka. In fact she lived for ten more years, no doubt with an untroubled conscience.
In the 17th- and 18th-century poems by woman here, we have the persistence of a genuinely classical realism about human behaviour, as witnessed in their own lives. I have transcribed exactly the capitalization, which signals nouns, and the italicization, whose function seems mixed, partly indicating technical legal terms, partly doing—what? None of this biographical information, apart from his dates, is of the slightest relevance to the poem, but having been enabled to find it, I may as well pass it on.
What is going on in it would appear to be a spring fertility festival on southern English downland. I imagine that gowns became green from wriggling around on the grass with someone on top of you. I have tweaked punctuation and spelling in the interests of narrative readability—e. Apparently the Achesons were one of several landed families with whom Swift would stay, recovering some of that spaciousness that he had enjoyed during his early years as secretary to Sir William Temple at Moor Park.
Walmsley and Whaley, like Jenny, were friends of the family in County Armagh. The rhyming, as in Swift elsewhere, is exact—el bows , Pan thay on, start-led, Jinny. But given her thinness and early death, is it possible that she was by nature of low energy, and that in his bullying way he was trying to stimulate her? P, Eliot famously said that true poetry can communicate before it is understood. This is nonsense, obviously, if the text on the page is in Hungarian or Cantonese, at least if you have no knowledge of those languages. Which, in the present instance, entails treating the spelling as relatively phonetic, and giving the sounds such Scottishness as you can summon up.
Ramsay, like Burns, could write standard English verse when he wanted to. And with dialect, and slang, and jargon, a certain caution is required with respect to sought one-to-one equivalents. In fact, I now see that the etymology of the word is: Middle English screwe , from Middle French escroue , hole in which the screw turns, from Latin scrofa , sow, influenced by—ta-dah! Dialect words and idioms are mostly more tactile, more physical than their received standard equivalents. They certainly are in this robustly humorous poem, Scots having retained a vitality that had dwindled down from the Renaissance in what was already standard English, and which Victorian poets like William Barnes, in his phonetic Dorset dialect poems a bit misguided in their eschewal of Latinisms , and Gerard Manley Hopkins , with his recourse to older or regional usages and at times his ad hoc coinages, would try to recover.
As would twentieth-century Scottish poets employing Scots for a variety of purposes, like Hugh MacDiarmid. So the glossary here, derived partly from the superb online Dictionary of the Scots Language , with its numerous examples, is an approximative aid and not a list telling you what each and every term really means. Particularly since idioms are often runs of words. I myself have no expertise in this matter. But the poem, with its linguistic richness, is splendid and reminds me of Villon.
Its humour arises out of a lot of three-dimensional social observation and a tolerant enjoyment of rogueishness. Robert Halsband and Isobel Grundy Oxford, One does, too, rather wonder how Swift had come to make the kinds of observations in them. The slacker kind is liable to be haunted by the Demon of the Binary—the premature closure on a praiseworth image of a self which then, as contrary facts emerge, is thought to crumble into an ignoble and really real image, as if the ignoble were always more real.
Relationships between texts could exist and be perceived, of course. But the relationships were between particular speech-acts, particular formal articulatings of grief, or love, or nostalgia, or indignation, or religious dread, or moral perplexity, and not, in the conventional sense of the terms, biographical or autobiographical ones. So maybe the flesh-and-blood and testicular Swift indeed behaved at times as foolishly as you or me.
In the summer of , having arrived there by boat from Dubrovnik, I prowled around Venice with a camera for a day, without a guidebook or map, and with only a general sense of the Piazza San Marco and the Grand Canal as landmarks. It was a comfortable experience. You felt safe everywhere, and threaded your way without any goal in mind, and with no signs announcing that this or that building or piazza that you happened upon had major importance. The well over four-hundred songs, so-called, are nameless and not arranged in any obvious sequences that I can see.
Some feel Cavalierish, some eighteenth-century. Which is to say that this is that uncommon thing, an anthology of poems, not of poets or periods. Tunes are named for some of the songs. No doubt contemporary readers would have known tunes for some of the others. Predominantly these are poems dealing with aspects of Eros—love and sex, sought and denied—and mostly from a male perspective, but without either swoonings from hopeless eternal passion or obscenity. As Ramsay puts it in his preface to the fourteenth edition,.
In my compositions and collections, I have kept out all smut and ribaldry, that the modest voice and ear of the fair singer might meet with no affront; the chief bent of all my studies being to gain their good graces…. The Miscellany , by and large, is a comfortable and mildly theatrical mulch of the social, without any romantic agonies.
But all offer their linguistic pleasures. One technically violates the principle of no excerpts in A New Book. It had become more of a tourist site, rather than a lived-in environment. But there is still a loss of hiddenness and remoteness and temporality, meaning the time that in pre-electronic days might be required for finding out about the arcane. The poems in Tea-Table Miscellany were obviously assembled to be shared, sung, enjoyed—not studied. I wonder what some of those things are that the Nurse is saying, though. For the purposes of A New Book , it belongs better here than back in the Renaissance.
It has a linguistic richness absent by then from English verse, and must have been challenging to English readers in its Rabelasian tactility and exuberant myth-making. But perhaps such a poem was also liberating for some in its underground fashion, the way the great horror and gangster movies of the early s had been when set beside portentous historical movies.
And even when a lot of the diction may have been Greek to them, there would still have been a welcome aura of the indecorous. His Tea Table Miscellany , which came out in the same year was mainly a very English and user-friendly assemblage of love-game and friendship poems extending the modes of the Cavalier poets, and presented anonymously. But to judge from James Kinsley, ed, The Poems of William Dunbar Oxford, , the attribution would have been among a number that have been rejected.
The roman-numeral dividers were provided by Ramsay for all the poems in the anthology.
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In fact the changes in the body of the text are almost all a matter of spelling. But while he spares female readers the, ahem! Some of which, it occurs to me, may have been nonce terms, as if someone nowadays were to refer to an inamorata as an iggly-wiggly sucksiebubble. The reference to Morpheus and poppies is obviously to laudanum opium dissolved in alcohol , on which see Alethea Hayter. In this poem from the mid-point of the century, we see, as it were, a chrysalis starting to break open. Laudanum will simply induce a voiceless calm of sorts. A BBC website reports that:.
The Goodwin Sands, a stretch of shoals and sandbars about 10 miles long, lie off the east coast of Kent. They are named after Earl Godwin or Goodwin, the father of King Harold, who is said to have owned what was then an island of 4, acres of fertile but low-lying land with a sea wall all around. William the Conqueror gave the land to the abbey of St Augustine at Canterbury.
It was the abbot who allowed the sea wall to collapse and the sea broke through in and flooded the island. Since then the Goodwin Sands have been a hazard to shipping and are littered with wrecks. The most famous events in their history were the Great Storm of when a number of vessels, including the man-of-war Stirling Castle , foundered on the Sands, and in when the South Goodwin Lightship there are no rocks that would support a lighthouse sank with considerable loss of life. I quote the passage for its general interest. We owe the critical foregrounding of this poem to F.
However, his discussion of it is one of his less satisfying critical performances—mostly information about the individuals and their relationships referred to in the poem, plus descriptions of its metrical and syntactical features. Nothing, on the other hand, that throws light on the talk about wills why would someone be bothered by receiving a bequest? And he blurs the distinction between actual personages as described elsewhere and how their names operate in the poem. The practice of providing fictive names for character-types—Lip, Bastides, etc,—has its advantages.
Here lies Sir Tact, a diplomatic fellow Whose silence was not golden, but just yellow. William Warburton, Bishop of Gloucester — , was living on the estate of his wealthy father-in-law, Ralph Allen. Well, words to that effect. Cash Thomas Potter, who was a rakish M. In the standard text, the eighteenth-century practice of capitalizing proper names suggests misleadingly that the ones here should be pronounced with special force.
There is no comfortable distance here between satirist and satirized, nor is the satirical tone consistent. One soon, as a sophisticated reader, takes the point that when Warburton is praised for something we should probably assume that the opposite is true, and that the character we are invited to construct for ourselves is without redeeming traits.
When, for example, Warburton waxes indignant in the House of Lords against Wilkes for having written blasphemously as well as libelously and obscenely, we are to see this as inconsistent with Warburton himself having argued in print on behalf of religious tolerance. But then, the lowly dedicator here was apparently for awhile, according to Winters, the best-known living English writer.
And far from being sexy, the acidulous Warburton was reported to be impotent in his marriage to a charming, vivacious, penniless eighteen-year-old girl, less than half his age— a marriage that Potter, and with him Wilkes and Churchill, may have viewed with disgust. There are layers below layers here. But by his own account he was an unsatisfactory clergyman whose parishioners disapproved of his morals and slept during his sermons, and who decided to quit the Church and try to make a go of it as a writer.
But maybe these features, and the slippages from and swerves back to a poised tone of conventional classical moralizing, help to give the poem its peculiar weight. Churchill, one might hazard, is trying to come to terms personally, in his head, with someone who is indeed more wealthy, more rich, more powerful, a better perceiver of career routes, and all-round more successful than himself, and who started life at the same modest social level. This is writing de bas en haut. But it is an intense poem, and the engagement here of one individual with another is dramatic. And intrinsic to the drama, as Winters shows us, are the long and complex sentences, with their departures from and returns to the balanced couplet norm, their interjections, their parentheses, their shifts in tone—.
We see thy mind at large, and through thy skin Peeps out that Courtesy that dwells within. Winters is generally thought to have disapproved of the mimetic. My take on that now is that what he disapproved of was the kind of generalized mimesis in which someone is furious and the whole poem or passage has the choppiness and incoherence of rage, or is depressed and the sentences and rhythms droop.
This is not satire in the eighteenth-century tradition. It is not epigrammatic and it does not endeavor to make stupidity ridiculous. Stupidity is the result of privation of being; privation is evil; and when a stupid man rises to power he becomes pompous, hypocritical, and dangerous. The phenomenon is a common one: I have seen it a good many times in the academic world, but here the evil man is operating on a national scene and becomes a major representative of evil.
As happens at times in his criticism, what Winters gives us here in eighty-two words is more powerful than what is manifest in the words of the poem itself. Was the poem left unfinished, as an early editor suggested? Let not thy Brain as Brains less potent might, Dizzy, confounded, giddy with the height, Turn round and lose distinction, lose her skill And wonted powers of knowing good from ill, Of sifting Truth from falsehood, friends from foes But maybe there could have been more infill, more consolidation of what is there already?
But Wilmot, as Lord Rochester, had his estate and rank to buoy him up, and an intimate acquaintance with the doings of Court and Town. This charming poem and the glossary items without question marks come from James Hogg, Selected Poems , ed. Douglas S. Mack Like John Clare, Hogg, who was scraping a hard living as a young shepherd when an intelligent employer gave him the chance to become literate, with subsequent encouragement by Scott, knew the harsh rural realities. But the yearnings expressed here seem grounded in not impossible actualities he knew country things , which probably helps account for the popularity of the poem as a song.
Hogg was obviously tougher-minded than Clare, but he also had the advantage of a popular Scottish poetic tradition to tap into, starting with ballads collected by his mother, whereas Clare had to work out his own wonderful poetic discourse on his own. I first encountered Don Leon in August in a gloomy used bookstore in the northwest corner of the Palais-Royale arcade in Paris. The proprietor was unfriendly, and no, no Ulysses or Gautier. But Don Leon —by Byron?? The edition, in its orange hardback, with quality pre-war paper, was that of the Fortune Press, that curious one-man operation, as described in Wikipedia , that, with its mixed offerings of gay erotica and slim first volumes of poetry, was a tiny chink in the boundary wall of English literary respectability.
But the pound was worth much more back then, and the franc less. None of the handful of persons to whom I mentioned the book had heard of it, or wanted to know more about it, or to borrow it. Wilson Knight, best known for his somewhat dithyrambic books about Shakespeare. But it had stayed somewhere in my mind. But there were energetic passages in it that stayed in the mind. So now I have the Fortune Press edition again, only with black covers and far from cheap. And the text, thanks to an online site, is now in A New Book of Verse. I mention these things for their bearing on the question of canon formation.
Some parts of it are better than others. The earlier stretches in which Byron, as speaker, is recalling his boyish and early-manhood fumblings towards entry into mysterious and excoriated practices, lack tension, since we of course have now passed collectively way beyond that kind of innocent-ignorance—as did, it would appear from Googling, Byron himself. But the action picks up with his affair with the lovely Greek boy Giraud, and does again with his account of the conversations in bed with the heavily pregnant Arabella that led to her letting him use an alternative route—from which activity, it appears, came his subsequent legal problems, the divorce and, since sodomy was a capital offence, his permanent exile from England.
The most vigorous parts of the poem are the angry assaults on the draconian laws against sodomy the notes tell us of an otherwise respectable gentleman hanged in for the offence , and the hypocrisy of an establishment in which sodomy was widespread and high-class brothels flourished. Thou ermined judge, pull off that sable cap! Peep thro the casement; see the gallows there: Thy work hangs on it; could not mercy spare? What had he done?
Ask crippled Talleyrand, Ask Beckford, Courtenay, all the motley band Of priests and laymen, who have shared his guilt If guilt it be then slumber if thou wilt… 1—8. H— D— paws, and red-haired Charlton sips, Tip-tongued, the nectar from vaginal lips. Some take a flogging, till the smart supplies Incentives to their dormant energies. Some hoary captains oft their yards have braced Where Jean Secundus only basia placed: For Mother Wood has maidens complaisant, With mouth-piece ready foe each old gallant; And Mother Windsor plies her dirty work, To suit the taste of Hebrew, Greek, or Turk.
Professors there peep through the wainscot hole, And watch the needle dipping at the pole. Or nicely solve by observations found, The problem of the oval and the round. Yes, London! Are you a soldier? Pace the barrack-room, Just as the morning dawn dispels the gloom. See where the huddled groins in hot-beds lie, Each fit to be a garden deity.
The provincial farmer who comes to the capital on business, and seasons his business with pleasure, would scarcely think he had his full measure of enjoyment if he did not visit the famous Chelsea Gardens. In the country he is perhaps a strict Puritan … but he feels that when in Rome he must do as Romans do. Cremorne Gardens were at their peak of popularity when Vauxhall closed down in They ran along the Thames at Chelsea, just south of Battersea Bridge.
But as the evening wore on, the character of the Gardens changed, and more worldly relaxations were pursued. It ran parallel to the Strand from St. Clements Danes, and disappeared, with Wych Street, when the Strand was widened at the beginning of this century. I quote that last sentence with pleasure, since elsewhere in Jottings I engaged in my own descent into another underworld, the so-called Mushroom Jungle of British crime pulps in the s and early 50s, only to find that the sensationalist terms in which it had been condemned were unwarranted.
And to have had the opportunity, via Pearl, to recall the social and psychological impoverishment that had gone on in the later Victorian years in the name of good morals and social order. There are indeed elements here and there in A New Book of the carnivalesque. Eros is more alive in them, at least in translation, than in the poems of Cavafy. This was near the outset of their tour of Scotland and the Hebrides. Andrews, in the county of Fife on the east coast of Scotland, was the third-oldest university in the English-speaking world.
The River Eden flows into the sea there. His career, rightly viewed, was a saga of crippling handicaps heroically overcome after strings of failures. He was in his mid-sixties, overweight, and with various ailments, when he allowed Boswell to lure him into the discomforts and potential dangers of their quasi-sociological journey around darkest Scotland. There is a dangerous energy to the poem. But it had been a land of Jacobite risings, most recently the rebellions of and , the latter being put down with a savagery that ensured that there would never be a another.
Like Ireland, it had been, in part, an occupied country. And in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries it had had one of the great literary cultures of Europe to look back on with pride. Including the over-the-top ferocious Flyting of Dunbar and Kennedy. The texts of To the Rev.
James Kinsley Oxford U. His professed method was to construct his version strictly by the rearrangement or combination of other versions, or by following mainly one version but correcting and improving it by the selection of words, lines, phrases, or stanzas from other versions. This, however, was often not to be done, without the introduction, as well, of words, phrases, lines, and occasionally even stanzas of his own. Moreover, he often found it impossible to resist the impulse to improve the phraseology, and he hardly ever resisted the impulse to improve the rhythm or the rhyme. Thirteen of those, in among others that fill out the narrative, are, with a few minor differences, the poem as it has come to figure in our own general anthologies.
The poem was communicated to me by Charles Kirkpatrick Sharpe, Esq. Ritson, in his Ancient Song ; and that, at the same time, there should exist such a difference, as to make the one appear rather a counterpart than copy of the other. With its literally impossible action, its stylized symbolism, its supernaturally benign creatures, and its traditional religious overtones, it is quasi-medieval in feeling, and according to Francis James Child in his monumental English and Scottish Popular Ballads — was first printed in Allardyce, i. If they were so written down, the verses have clearly been much improved either by Sharpe or Scott.
When we came in by Glasgow town, We were a comely sight to see; My love was clad in the black velvet, And I myself in cramasie,. With scornful ee she looked downe, Her cheeke with laughter swellin; Whilst all her friends cryd out amaine, Unworthy Barbara Allen. Informed scholarly-critical opinion would appear to be that insofar as there are certainties, they are the dates of first print publication, and that the ballads that are automatically on short-lists now largely appeared for the first time in print in the eighteenth century.
The mounting fear and despair below the understated dialogue is lost, and those eels boiled wriggling and slimy in broth are prosaically fried in a pan. From a small manuscript volume, lent to Professor Child by Mr. William Macmath, of Edinburgh, containing four pieces written in or about , and this ballad in a later hand probably of the beginning of the 19th century. Charles Mackie, August, , is scratched upon the binding. From Mrs. What like were your fishies, my jollie young man? A self-correction, though.
The number of traditional border ballads that are memorable as poetry when standing alone and without musical accompaniment seems to be pretty small, unless one enjoys reading about endless feuds, frays, sexual relationships often political resulting in violence, and the like. The same names keep coming up. I first came upon this moving earlyth-century poem in , in W. The heaviest fighting there was with the kingdom of Kandy in the interior in The Kandian forces were equipped with firearms, including canon, and repulsed the British, eventually surrendering peacefully a dozen or so years later.
But for the poem all that really matters is that, in the words of another poem , Johnny had gone for a soldier and come back. There were lots of Irish in the armies of Europe. Yeats, have tweaked the poem to its present crispness? Yeats himself, in his own poems, was no pacifist. Addressed to the Queen on behalf of the silk-weavers of Lyons who had been imprisoned after a labour conflict in the s, the poem is in a ballade-like mode, with a repeated refrain, that would not have been out of keeping in the fifteenth century of Villon. But there is nothing anachronistic or fustian about it, and in the middle of the French High Romantic period, it has a verbal and moral clarity, and a sense of the speaker and the auditor as both being under the governance of the same values, for which there was no equivalent in English Romanticism.
The ballade- or quasi-ballade form is repetitive and incremental rather than linear and developmental, and hence more impersonal and public than sonnets or couplets, which have to get somewhere and which had dominated in the English Renaissance. You could address the Queen of Heaven in a ballade if you wished, without being either disrespectful or servile, conscious also of owing loyalty to, and being sustained by, the traditional values of art as craft. George monbiot has written about Clere here. Heine lived in Paris nearly half his life, from April to his death in February at the age of fifty-eight.
Many of his finest poems were written in this period of exile, and particularly in the last eight years, when he was bedridden and consciously dying of tabes dorsalis , a spinal degeneration which is now known to be a form of tertiary syphilis. His mind remained unaffected and he was witty and usually cheerful right to the end. Keine Messer wird man singen, Keinen Kadosch wird man sagen, Nichts gesagt und nichts gesungen Wird an meinem Sterbetagen.
Je reviens tout de suite. Pourriez-vous me donner dollars sur vos gains? C'est l'histoire d'un gars qui prend le train Paris-Frankfort. Voici francs. Le gars s'endort Vous vous foutez de ma gueule? A son retour sur terre, une meute de journalistes l'attend. Les autres jours, c'est vraiment mort Mais pour danser, c'est bien!
Une deuche tombe en panne sur l'autoroute. Palabres entre les deux conducteurs et ils se mettent d'accord : "Je vais vous remorquer. Une banlieusarde vient raconter au commissaire de police de son quartier : - J'ai vu se poser, devant ma maison, une soucoupe volante dont ont jailli trois extraterrestres.
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Dans un bar un gars arrive joyeux : - Moi j'ai un QI de !! Ta montre est Suisse. Ta chemise est Hawaiienne. Tes vacances sont Turques, Tunisiennes ou Marocaines. Tes chiffres sont Arabes. Ton Christ est Juif. Anny, quel son fait un chat? Samuel, quel son produit un chien?
Jennifer, quel son produit une souris? Toto : De la compote monsieur!! L'optimiste est un homme qui pense qu'elle n'essayera pas. La question est : Quelle est la chose la plus rapide du monde? Le directeur : - Pourquoi? Le directeur est ravi. Excellent pense le directeur. Un jour un monsieur rentre chez un droguiste : - Bonjour je voudrais un insecticide. J'ai le cafard!
C'est deux hommes, assis au bar, au sommet de l'Empire State Building. Le second consommateur dit : - C'est impossible! Le premier client lui dit qu'il va prouver ce qu'il dit. Vous voulez la bonne ou la mauvaise d'abord? Et quelle est la mauvaise?
Bien Oui! Faucon ramasse les feuilles mortes. Faucon plante nos bulbes de tulipes. Faucon range les chaises de jardin. Faucon vide la piscine. Faucon serre le bateau. Faucon lave les vitres. Joyeux automne. Sentant ses doigts glisser, il demande : - Il y a quelqu'un? Je prends mon otoscope et j'inspecte votre oreille Le vieil homme qui parlait uniquement le Navajo, posa une question que son fils traduit. Il refusa. Voici la traduction qu'il fit du message : "Surveillez bien ces gars, ils sont venus pour vous voler votre territoire!
Les filles, c'est l'inverse Comme mon papa!! Un Gaulois, un Romain et un Grec se retrouvent en haut d'une falaise. Le Romain s'avance, regarde le ciel et lance un cri triomphant Alors le Gaulois crie "Par l'escalier! C'est un homme d'affaire qui est en vacances. Il admire sa prise et lui dit : - C'est le bonheur. Tu retournes en chercher? Je vais avec toi. Je vais t'accorder un voeu parmi trois propositions. C'est un pain au chocolat qui rencontre un croissant et qui lui dit : - Eh, pourquoi t'es en forme de lune toi? Est-ce que j'te demande pourquoi t'as une merde au cul?
Blague qui fait mal au cerveau Deux chevaux, un bai brun et un alezan. Un homme, une femme, deux enfants avec affaires dans chariot'. Les bouchers sont des sales amis, mais ce sont des gens bons Navrant hein? Le Sergent lance : - Rompez! J'ai dit rompez - Je ne peux pas, Sergent! Interroge Laurent. Je ne sais pas. S'exclament ses potes. Lui demande Laurent. Faut-il vraiment faire du sport? Donc, commencez tout de suite Je n'ai pas perdu un kilo. Deux hommes discutent: - Et bien que t'arrive-t-il? Il y a Bizou dans l'Orne. Un patient lui demande de quoi il souffre.
Je suis le facteur. C'est pour les mouches! A Monaco il y a de superbes voitures. Un peu plus tard: - Une Jajajajaja Jaguar! Encore plus tard: - Une memememe Lorsque tu me parles, tu dois toujours dire Monsieur! Allez, recommence. Ce n'est pas une excuse. Quand on aime, on a toujours 20 ans!
Un homme saoul entre dans un bar de motards, s'assoit au bar et commande un verre. Le motard regarde l'homme saoul et ne dit pas un mot. La pression monte chez les copains du motard, mais ce dernier ne dit toujours rien. Pchitt orange, pchitt citron? Un nouveau peintre fait courir le Tout-Paris. La petite dame la rassure en lui affirmant qu'il n'y a rien dans la boite qui pourrait la blesser. Et surtout, n'oubliez pas Des watts plein la gueule, il finira bien par parler! Un couple de japonais en vacances. La femme : - Ouf!!!.. Ensuite, je vais boire un autre coup au bistrot d'en face Et je recommence Mais au bout de deux heures, ne trouvant rien, ils finissent par renoncer.
Mais la semaine prochaine, c'est ton tour. J'ai besoin que quelqu'un vienne retourner mon potager. Comment pouvez-vous le savoir? J'y vais tout de suite! Je savais bien que tu allais oublier C'est au jambon que je le voulais! Maintenant, on dit : - Allez-y! Et le loup s'enfuit sans demander son reste. Black et Decker! Le meilleur moyen de vivre vieux Au bout de plusieurs heures, il trouve enfin une habitation. Insiste notre homme. Ici c'est les WC. Elle se manifeste ainsi : La brioche augmente et la baguette diminue.
Quelques jours plus tard, le chef de la tribu organise un pow wow. Et plus tard le petit George Washington devint le plus important dirigeant de cette nation. Le lendemain le jeune homme revient voir le gourou : - J'ai suivi vos instructions. La pluie coulait le long de mon cou et je me suis vraiment senti stupide. Dans un roman d'Agatha Christie!?! Il est 8h C'est alors qu'il leur dit: - Alors, on jardine?? C'est une pauvre petite religieuse comme vous Anne essaye un nouveau maillot de bain.
Elle se contemple longuement devant un miroir en faisant la moue. La vendeuse : "Vous savez le prix aussi est ridicule. Apportez-moi un homard". Cependant, fait remarquer le consommateur, il manque une pince. Et, malheureusement, il arrive parfois, au cours d'une bagarre, que l'un d'eux se fasse arracher sa pince. Maximes 1 - Quand un verre est plein, on le vide. Et quand il est vide, on le plaint. Et tu sais pourquoi?
Tu as compris? Ce n'est pas tout maman, je suis enceinte! Ne crains rien maman, j'ai 15 ans et je sais comment prendre soin de moi. Je suis chez les voisins. Je voulais juste que tu saches qu'il y a pire que mon bulletin scolaire, que tu trouveras dans le tiroir de mon bureau Je t'aime. El sombrero! Il y a deux minutes, je ne croyais pas non plus au monstre du Loch Ness Ensuite, pendant que vous faites cela, dessinez le chiffre "6" dans les airs, avec votre main droite. Vous allez voir, votre pied va changer de direction! C'est con, mais c'est vrai! C'est pour rester belle.
Albert quitte la chambre et revient deux minutes plus tard. Qu'est-ce que vous avez quand vous tenez deux grosses boules vertes dans les mains? Chez Mattel, la Barbie brune est sortie! Nicolas Sarkozy veut savoir qui, des trois organismes qu'il finance, la DST, le GIGN et la police nationale, est le plus efficace pour attraper les criminels. Le GIGN arrive, encercle le bois, fait une sommation rapide et mitraille tout, fout le feu au bois, saccage toute trace de vie. Le docteur : - Il est encore en vie? Le patient: - il a 92 ans et il se porte comme un charme!
Le docteur : - C'est incroyable! Le patient : Il a ans et il se porte tellement bien qu'il va se marier la semaine prochaine! Et pourquoi un homme qui a ans veut se marier? Le patient : - Qui vous a dit qu'il voulait se marier? Il travaille dans un bar gay comme gogo-dancer". Ne pouvez-vous pas annuler cette contravention? Cela continue encore un quart d'heure, et le flic, sans sourciller, accumule les contraventions sous l'essuie-glace.
Puisqu'il le faut Tant que mon chef donnera l'illusion de beaucoup me payer, je donnerai l'illusion de beaucoup travailler. Il descend et lui crie : " Excusez-moi, pourriez-vous m'aider? Quel horreur! Ce n'est plus possible, je ne dors plus depuis plusieurs mois en raison de ses ronflements. Un chef de renom prend le train pour partir en vacances. S'il prend la bible, il rentrera dans les ordres. S'il choisit l'argent, ce sera un homme d'affaires et s'il prend le magazine X, ce sera un voyou Le recruteur fait entrer le premier candidat.
Que faisiez-vous avant? C'est une femme, un peu niaise. Il fait entrer le dernier candidat. Nous n'avons pas de travail pour vous. L'entreprise en sortira grande gagnante. Un berger et ses moutons traversent une route rurale. Si je devine le nombre de moutons que vous avez, est-ce que vous m'en donnez un? Tu peux avoir ton mouton. Le jeune homme prend le mouton et le met dans le coffre de la Jeep. Le berger s'approche et lui demande C'est fort?! Vas-y mon fils pose ta question! Il n'y a pas de quoi pleurer La nouvelle GameBoy Advance?
On simplifie et on obtient Pi. Ce dernier monte sur le bar, ouvre sa braguette et arrose le barman de pisse. Observez-vous soigneusement dans un miroir Vous avez compris, non? Je marchais sur le trottoir avec ma petite fille de 4 ans. Comment connais-tu toutes ces choses, maman? Tu dois savoir ces choses, sinon ils ne te laissent pas devenir une maman. Et venant du fond de la classe, on entend la voix de Maxime, le petit dur de service qui fait : - M'dame, hier soir, j'ai vu un super film avec Sylvester Stallone et il y avait trois types qui lui montaient dessus Ben non Tu es vraiment un pro!
Deux amis se rencontrent pendant le crash boursier. Et comment fais-tu? Un homme marche dans la rue quand subitement quelqu'un l'accoste en criant : - Eh! Ca fait super longtemps que je ne t'ai pas vu! Il se dit alors: "Pas question que je me laisse rattraper par une voiture de poulets". Alors, si vous me donnez une excuse que je n'ai pas encore entendue, je vous laisse aller. Vous comprenez, je suis directeur de casting pour Ali Baba et les 40 voleurs L'institutrice donne son cours de vocabulaire.
En automne, les feuilles des arbres deviennent rouges ou marron et ensuite elles tombent par terre. Toto intervient du fond de la classe : - Est-ce qu'un pet peut contenir des morceaux? C'est parce que je suis jongleur dans un cirque. Ce sont mes outils de travail. Alors le jongleur sort quelques couteaux, se campe solidement sur ses jambes, prend un moment de concentration, et commence son spectacle. Une chance que je ne bois plus. Elle arrive au paradis et elle est accueillie par Saint-Pierre : - Bienvenue au paradis! Les portes s'ouvrent et elle se retrouve sur le green d'un terrain de golf magnifique.
Ils s'approchent, l'embrassent et parlent du bon vieux temps. Elle passe un si bon moment qu'avant qu'elle ne s'en rende compte, il est temps de partir. Tout le monde lui serre la main, lui dit au revoir, et elle monte dans l'ascenseur. Celui-ci retourne au paradis et elle retrouve Saint-Pierre. Maintenant, vous devez choisir Alors comment fait-il?
C'est quoi ton truc? Ce matin qu'est-ce que vous me donnez? Du lait ou du steak? On lui propose de peindre des bandes blanches tout le long de la route. Il accepte. Qu'est-ce qui provoque l'arthrite? Depuis combien de temps, souffrez-vous d'arthrite mon fils? Mais je viens de lire un article sur le pape et lui apparemment, il en souffre depuis vingt ans!
C'est le tour du second alpiniste. Le pape meurt, il monte au Paradis, un ange s'approche de lui - oui bonjour monsieur, quel est votre nom? Mais je suis le pape! L'ange - Permettez moi je reviens de suite! Il se retrouve aussi sec devant Saint-Pierre. Pendant quelques temps, le golfeur fait le tour du Paradis et regarde un peu comment les gens s'occupent, mais il ne voit rien pour le tenter.
Alors pourquoi vous surmener? Alors, venez ici que je vous montre comment on tient un balai. La fille continue de le regarder en coin. Deux corses sont assis sur un banc normal. La banque qui leur fait face se fait plastiquer re normal. Demande le professeur. Il est venu la nuit, il m'a fait un cadeau, et on ne l'a plus revu! Tu ne te ronges plus les ongles? Vous avez entre 20 et 25 ans? Vous voulez un gros salaire? Fernandez psg. Lisez un peu ce que votre chef peut dire sur vous au grand patron : 1er mail : M. Laquelle doit-elle nettoyer? Quand la serveuse arrive, il se concentre et passe le commande: - Bbb La serveuse lui demande alors: - Blonde ou Brune?
Ce qu'il fait. Pendant qu'il est parti, l'avocat prend une de ses chaussures et crache dedans. C'est une vieille femme qui prend rendez-vous avec un portraitiste. Qui m'a fichu une andouille pareille? On ne peut pas vraiment dire qu'elle soit dans le coup 18 ans: Elle? Qu'est-ce qu'elle est vieux jeu! Redemande la petite fille. Et je sais combien tu mesures. Sans quitter la contravention des yeux, le policier pointe le doigt vers le ciel. Une famille vient de se faire mener en bateau par un agent immobilier. Ils sont furax!
Et lesquels? Ce nain-nain lui demande : - Que fais-tu le nain, je peux venir avec toi?
Alors le nain, le nain-nain partent ensemble. Plus loin, ils rencontrent un nain-nain-nain qui leur dit: "Bonjour, que faites-vous, puis-je venir avec vous? Alors le nain, le nain-nain et le nain-nain-nain partent ensemble. Le nain-nain saute et meurt comme le premier. Toute la France? Alors elle le prend. Elle lave, elle lave, mais le sang ne part toujours pas. Utilisez Mir-Express!!!
Sois infatiguable au repos. Oublie les vieux travaux et laisse les nouveaux devenir vieux. Ne reste pas debout lorsque tu peux t'asseoir, ne reste jamais assis lorsque tu peux t'allonger. Si tu es victime d'une farce, surtout ne marche pas, reste assis. Il repart. Cherchez une autre wouteille de bisky. Versez un wherre de visky autre. Faites cuire le whisky encore une petute minite. Boutez encore une autre whisky cherche. Saviez-vous que : le 1er mai est un samedi Tu auras ton scooter" Le second demande : "j'aimerais une play-station 2 car je n'ai pas d'argent pour m'en acheter une et mes parents ne veulent pas C'est l'histoire de Youri Gagarine, premier homme dans l'espace Je vais essayer une autre porte".
Mais quand le fermier revient, le fonctionnaire n'a absolument rien fait, il tient une grosse patate dans une main et une petite dans l'autre. Le fermier lui demande ce qui se passe car il ne comprend plus rien. Avec mon nouveau chef, il m'est impossible de dormir au bureau. Il te surveille? Sa femme lui dit : - Profite que tu aies la gueule ouverte pour appeler le petit! Un Corse a un copain qui est maire du village.
Il lui demande s'il n'aurait pas un petit boulot pas trop dur. Tous les autres ont quelque chose: une pelle, une pioche, une brouette, et moi je n'ai rien pour me reposer dessus! Vous pouvez avoir du chocolat quand vous conduisez, et ceci est prudent. Vous pouvez avoir du chocolat aussi longtemps que vous voulez. Si vous mordez les noix trop fort, le chocolat ne se plaindra pas. Le mot "grossesse" n'effraie pas le chocolat. Vous n'avez pas de poil dans la bouche avec du chocolat. Avec le chocolat, pas besoin de faire semblant. Le chocolat ne vous fait pas tomber enceinte.
Vous pouvez avoir autant de sorte de chocolat que vous voulez. La grosseur du chocolat importe peu Une violette discute avec une marguerite.
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La marguerite se plaint : - Moi je n'ai pas de parfum, je suis fragile, je ne peux pas me cacher.. L'empereur Bokassa est en visite officielle en Grande-Bretagne. Son voisin, voyant cela, en fit un lui aussi : Quoiqu'on dise, quoiqu'on fasse, Ceux qui sont ici viennent d'en face. Hier, j'ai fait l'amour 19 fois avec ma femme! Fallait bien que je le dise a quelqu'un! Un gars se rend au Vatican pour entendre le pape. Le lendemain, il revient vers 8h. Il le revoit gesticuler, mais il est encore trop loin et entend seulement un faible marmonnement.
Alors le surlendemain, il revient vers 6h, le pape sort encore. Allez-vous en de mon parterre!!! T'es tout le temps en train de l'emmerder Si tu es poli et respectueux avec ton papa, je n'ai aucune raison de te gifler La charade qui tue. Mon premier est un accapareur. Mon second est un accapareur. Mon tout est une maladie, qu'elle est-elle?
Quand la femme se tait, c'est qu'elle va dire quelque chose! Celui d'une blonde aussi! Le capitalisme, c'est l'exploitation de l'homme par l'homme. Le syndicalisme, c'est le contraire! Cinq minutes plus tard, le gamin s'agite et sort un brochet de trois livres non sans mal Le vieux pense que c'est de la chance et prend son mal en patience. Puis un saumon, et encore un brochet! Comment tu fais!!? Alors le gamin crache un truc dans sa main, puis dit - Faut garder les vers au chaud!
Alors le mec, il se dit qu'il va aller le changer!! Le gars, super chaud : - Je dois dire que moi aussi! Le policier demande : - Qu'est-ce que c'est que tous ces couteaux dans votre voiture? Eh bien! Physicien : Pi vaut 3, plus ou moins 0, Le gars en reste comme deux ronds de flan, puis il se reprend : - Oh Johnny, t'es mon idole, j'ai tous tes disques. Ensuite Fred regagne sa table. Le premier commence: "Mon Papa, c'est le plus grand du monde parce que quand il pose un pied sur le quai de la rive gauche de la Seine, il peut poser l'autre pied sur le quai de la Rive Droite de la Seine!!! Tu tombes merveilleusement bien!
Au bout de plusieurs heures, ils voient enfin arriver un saint-bernard avec son tonneau d'alcool autour du cou. Fait l'Irlandais. Je savais que je pouvais compter sur vous! C'est une histoire qui compte beaucoup!!!! Le militaire : Un, deux, Le fonctionnaire : Un, deux, trois, quatre, cinq, six, sept, huit, neuf, dix, Femmes: 1. Essayer de garer la voiture. This theory of will as power enabled Guyau to argue that obligation or duty should not be conceived as a constraint on action, in the manner of religious morality. Rather, the feeling of obligation is a positive experience of a compulsion to act.
Obligation is a form of intensely lived Ibid. Greenstreet , p. This enabled Guyau to make direct lived experience the principal source of his vision of a radical new form of social authority. Authority, for Guyau, was to derive from an amplification or intensification of inner experience rather than from an augmentation of experience through tradition, as with transcendent models of authority. For this reason, he placed high value on categories such as risk and peril, where life is raised to its greatest intensity.
Those who confront risk and peril acquire authority because they have moved outside their safe milieu and hence force themselves to adapt and grow stronger. Guyau insisted that far from leaving society groundless, the decline of religious authority makes room for life immanently to create its own ground. Since the essence of life is to reproduce itself, he believed, this means that the intensification and amplification of life is inevitably accompanied by a vast expenditure of charity and social sympathy. Eventually, individual experience will achieve perfect harmony with social solidarity, meaning that obedience to the authority of lived experience will result in the most generous, life-affirming and sympathetic forms of human sociability.
Guyau captured here something of the architecture of an emerging form of authority where obedience would not be tied to stable and permanent foundations and traditions, but to the inherently unstable and dynamic nature of socio-biological life. Second, legitimate authority derived from life as a force that was essentially self-grounding, a force of gravity that came, not from a distant force, but from itself. Experiential authority was a variety of biopolitical authority: a form of authority that stems from having experienced, touched upon the limits of, life.
Biopolitical authority is not, then, exactly the rule of scientific truth — or of a despotic, totalising life force, collectivisation or sovereign. It is, rather, the power and attraction that congeals around a diversity of performances and manifestations of experiencing life. To be biopolitically authoritative is to mediate experience of life, to be a conduit to the force by which life objectivity pushes back. To know life, to make life manifest, to make a promise that life is real … to provide a link to life is to generate biopolitical authority.
Louis S. Friedland and Joseph R. Piroshnikoff New York, Experiential authority permitted new forms of resistance as well as supporting the continuing bourgeois conquest of the city. Hurley London, , p. Opium will expand beyond all measures, Stretch out the limitless, Will deepen time, make rapture bottomless, With dismal pleasures Surfeit the soul to the point of helplessness.
But that is nothing to the poison flow Out of your eyes, those round Green lakes in which my soul turns upside-down … To these my dreams all go At these most bitter gulfs to drink or drown But all that is not worth the prodigy Of your saliva, girl, That bites my soul, and dizzies it, and swirls It down remorselessly, Rolling it, fainting, to the underworld! According to Foucault, modern biopolitical authority is closely tied to knowing and liberating desire.
In this respect, Baudelaire is characteristically modern. James McGowan Oxford, London, His approach to modern living focuses upon desire as the element of the self that has been most completely commodified and objectified, lost even to itself. Indeed, his attitude towards desire is frequently one of rage and violence. Sometimes within a park, at rest, Where I have dragged my apathy, I have felt like an irony The sunshine lacerate my breast. And sweetness that would dizzy me! In these two lips so red and new My sister, I have made for you, To slip my venom, lovingly!
It expresses a revolt against the natural world, as idealized in the stereotypical figure of the eroticized female body. Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil, p. Becoming capable of capturing the experience of modernity requires exposing himself to its most violent extremities.
Allegory is a form of expression that sucks the life out of its object and reveals it in a spatial image of decay and loss. It drains the life from its object, and in this way mimics the power of the commodity. Life, desire and subjectivity itself are reduced to skeletal form: Her eyes, made of the void, are deep and black; Her skull, coiffured in flowers down her neck, Sways slackly on the column of her back, O charm of nothingness so madly decked!
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You will be called by some, 'caricature', Who do not know, lovers obsessed with flesh, The grandeur of the human armature. You please me, skeleton, above the rest! Do you display your grimace to upset Our festival of life? Baudelaire, The Flowers of Evil, pp. In this way, Baudelaire can lend truth the affective density of a lived experience of suffering. Experience, in Baudelaire, is the measure of an age in which the possibility for genuine experience has been all but destroyed.
As we will see in later chapters, this subversive mobilization of experiential authority was a formative influence on much of the radical urban culture of the following decades. Conclusion In this chapter I have explored the ways in which, during the s and s, the political culture of the Third Republic of France became dominated by narratives of a threefold crisis: a crisis of Walter Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama, trans.
At stake in these debates was the role of tradition, religion and evolution in the preservation of social order and private property. Its paradigmatic figures were the father, the notable, and the priest. It derived authority from an augmentation of experience through the accumulation over time of wisdom, knowledge and wealth. It was based on the certainty of truths that were revealed by God through his appointed intermediaries. The experimental method was intended to replace personal authority with wholly objective, scientific authority. The increasing emphasis over the course of the nineteenth century on inhabiting urban space as a storehouse of momentary, intense experiences led to an increasing valorization of the power of experience to help order society.
Theorists such as Guyau looked to biological life to find the principle of morality and social authority, and saw corporeal experience as the most intense expression of biological life. Experience, as the most authentic expression of life and vitality, was to become the most powerful form of biopolitical authority in the modern metropolis. In the writings of Baudelaire, for example, we see an attempt to ground the authority of violent challenges to the nature of modern life in the alienated, fragmented, irredeemably damaged nature of modern experience.
In the following chapter of this study, we will see how such a project of contesting biopolitical authority through the invention of new, rebellious forms of bio-cultural authority were enthusiastically adopted by the bohemian artists and political activists who took up residence in the working-class area of Montmartre during the last 20 years of the nineteenth century.
Bodily, lived experience was becoming a viable competitor to the authority of the church and the state as a guide for action. Following the example of Baudelaire, it was the cultural radicals taking up residence in Montmartre during the s and s who explored this aspect of experiential authority with the greatest intensity. In order to do so, they used humour as a way of ridiculing and challenging dominant authority structures and exploring new forms of experiential life. This chapter explores the emergence of a novel relationship between authority, humour and biological life that started to be practiced in late nineteenth-century Montmartre.
Following the Paris Commune of , Montmartre became a powerful spatial figure of urban autonomy, cultural critique, and bohemian anti-authoritarianism. The vitality of humour became both the medium and the message.
Breath, Breeze, Wind, Tempest, Thunder, Snow, Flame, Fire, Volcano ...
With the collaboration of high level politicians as well as police agents, Montmartre emerged as a new site of experimental freedom within the Third Republic. The Commune was seen as a powerful challenge to established authority and a utopian experiment with building new forms of municipal autonomy. On 26 March , a week after the start of the Paris Commune uprising, the first edition of a periodical called Le Mont-Aventin: Echo des Buttes Montmartre went to press.
Only two editions of the journal were published, and it is now largely forgotten. Its significance lies in its place as the first of a flood of small, independent journals that were published in Montmartre after — over 50 periodicals were established in the area between and It proclaimed Montmartre as the symbolic home of the Commune. Combining genuine revolutionary fervour with a hyperbolic celebration of the role of Montmartre in the uprising, it at once celebrated and parodied the language of the revolution.
The hill was first known as a volatile working class district of Rome, but later became an aristocratic area. The French revolutionary tradition had long modelled itself on Ancient Rome. Yet the demands it voiced were serious enough: The people are fed up of twenty years of monarchy, twenty years of lies, thefts, scandals, oppression and robberies. When a people rise up with a sacred goal, when a people, having for twenty years groaned under the cane of a despot, rise up and summon the strength to claim their unprescribable rights, inalienable and sovereign, can one in good faith accuse them of wanting to foment civil war, when all hearts blessed with true citizenship are ready to unite?
This proved a highly durable image. It was repeated endlessly within Montmartre over the following decades see for example Figure 4. But some aspects of it were also adopted by the anti-Communard writings which caricatured the Commune as a grotesque outpouring of uncontained, corrupt and uncivilized natural forces. The energy of the revolution was represented as a violent flow of diseased and decayed life. Georges Clemenceau, at the time the mayor of Montmartre, described the outbreak of the revolt by agents who were inhuman and pathologically deranged: All were shrieking like wild beasts without realizing what they were doing.
I observed then that pathological phenomenon which might be called blood lust. A breath of madness seemed to have passed over this mob … women, dishevelled and emaciated, flung their arms about while uttering raucous cries, having apparently taken leave of their senses. On their return, many Communards settled in Montmartre. Montmartre stood out as a symbol of independence and claims for spatial justice. It was this symbolic legacy that the bohemian and anarchist groups who gathered in Montmartre during the s and s capitalized on.
Moreover, the passing of a law on the liberty of the press in July guaranteed a much broader capacity to explore cultural expressions of dissent and discontent. From the s, a large number of small, ephemeral and often short-lived publications started to be produced in Montmartre by groups of bohemians keen to challenge established authority and moral standards.
A New Book of Verse
These publications were offered humorous, irreverent, and artistically experimental. Yet they voiced serious discontent concerning the nature of urban living in the Third Republic. The revolt expressed anger at a devastating housing crisis. This crisis started to be felt again with particular force from , as France slipped into economic depression, wages decreased, and rents dramatically increased.
Between and rents increased by 30 to 35 per cent at the same time as salaries decreased and 10 per cent of the working population were affected by unemployment. At the same time, a number of anarchist groups started to organize resistance against landlords. Launched by a group of Montmartre artists, it raged against the small humiliations and violations of liberty — as well as the wider economic hardships — suffered daily by tenants.
These authority figures, occupying a difficult mediating position between tenant and landlord, and not much wealthier than the tenants, were hugely unpopular, along with related characters such as doormen, porters and property managers. The Anti-Concierge directed a great force of anger against them. The opening article of the first issue, in a daringly avant-garde typographical format, announced its programme Figure 4.
Finally, create all the misery for him that the indignation of the oppressed tenant suggests to you. Do you hear, gloomy orchestra, These cruel chatterboxes mooing? They are coming with their brushes, To demand the money for the quarter … To arms, townsmen! Stand upright on the landing! Until impure blood is running in the stairwell! Would these terrible Cerberuses Make the law in our homes? Would mercenary caretakers claim from us our rents? Good God! The hands of these door-shutters rummaging in our pockets! Tremble, porters, and all your wives, Spouses worthy of their husbands; Tremble!
All your infamous plans will finally receive their due. Everyone is a soldier to fight you: children, women, young and old; You will find them all in place, Feady to fight you! To arms, townsmen! Debout sur le palier! Frappons, frappons! Dreadful references. Bis Grand dieu! This latent violence of humour has in fact often been observed in philosophical and social scientific writings on the topic. In this sense, he writes, laughter is the opposite of tears, which arise from the recognition of an inferiority or weakness in oneself.
Based on a reversal of established hierarchies, it celebrated the moral and aesthetic superiority of tenants over those who exerted illegitimate authority over them. Gaskin ed. A more convincing reading is to interpret such forms of humour as a momentary, bitter and reactionary compensation for the misery of social injustice and inequalities.
Rather than making any serious cultural challenge to wider social, political and economic structures of domination, the writers of the journal simply found an easy scapegoat in the authority figure closest to them: the concierge. Rodrigues and D. Cumming London and New York, , p. Yet this is not the whole story. Later Montmartre urban culture, I propose, added a new ingredient to their humour that demands more sophisticated analysis. This element was the use of humour to reproblematize one of the most controversial social processes of late nineteenth-century society: the life of the city.
Humans become comic when they give the impression of being a mere thing rather than a living being. The comic arises from moments where people find themselves unable to adapt organically to their environment — such as when a man trips over a paving stone. Kaufmann and R. Hollingdale New York, , p. Humour is an affirmation of creativity, suppleness and novelty, but at the same time a powerful means of social control, a way of punishing a failure to conform to social norms. This is because it is not just physical misfortunes that betray a lack of organic suppleness; it is also social awkwardness — a failure to belong adequately to the group.
Humour, that is, becomes a force that acts against life rather than for it. Its role is to ensure conformity. Humour thus functions, here, as a device for excluding diversity and difference. What these arguments also imply, however, is that humour might have played a novel kind of epistemological role in making life available to knowledge and experience.
Humour, I want to suggest, offered an alternative cultural vehicle for making the limits and boundaries of socio- Ibid. Ashton London, , p. If humour is a means of affirming particular forms of life and excluding others, then it is also a means of identifying and testing the limits of life. In other words, far from necessarily being a mere distraction form the real world, humour can also function as a powerful technique for truth-telling.
Humour, by testing the limits of life, can dramatize and critique established knowledge claims concerning the nature of healthy life. Indeed, the enthusiasm of the Montmartre counter-culture for developing new forms of humour, I wish to suggest, was closely linked to an aesthetico-political project of finding novel means for making visible the life of the city — and, perhaps, challenging accepted knowledges and experiences of urban vitality. Humour could lend the authority of embodied, vital, living experience to new truth-claims concerning the true life of the city.
Humour, as the most powerful expression of affective life, was the most effective authority through which to test the limits and thresholds of experiential life. Something of the atmosphere of the Montmartre cabarets is captured by Charles Rearick: As a refuge from the workaday world, the cabaret imparted the illusions of theatre, but with much more spontaneity and interaction between audience and spectacle, clients and performers … When not performing, the artists mingled with the customers; a kind of festive fraternity took the place of rigid roles and hierarchies entrenched in everyday society outside.
Indeed, the highly experimental nature of the Montmartre cabarets invites comparison with the spaces of scientific experimentation that came to prominence during the same period. Motifs of disease, madness, and degeneration were central to the style and content of the cabaret performances.
The cabarets were spaces in which pathologies could be performed, made visible, and experientially lived. As Rae Beth Gordon has explored, central to the performance style in the cabarets artistiques was the humorous imitation of pathological diseases such as hysteria and epilepsy. Paulus adopted a frantic, disjointed movement that was seen as distinctively epileptic and puppet-like. Angles everywhere on this weak body; something automatic in the gestures […] a mouth which is split in a tormented grin; an astonishing mask ending at two points: on top, the cranium, below, the chin: […] planted by the devil on a bundle of nerves.
Figure 4. Poster, They were associated above all with the pantomime figures such as Pierrot with whom Montmartre bohemians strongly identified see Chapter 5. Georges Montorgueil, cited in ibid. The Montmartre cabaret was emerging as a space for playing with and testing emerging knowledges of the limits of life in the modern city. It is tempting, then, to make connections between cultural experiments with testing the limits of life in the Montmartre cabarets, and the kinds of experimental authority that were being deployed in theatres of truth associated with scientists such as Pasteur and Charcot.
There was a strong emphasis in Montmartre cabarets on humorous parody of the positivist theatre of truth. The actual scientific laboratory is a highly controlled, experimental environment. The Montmartre cabaret, I am proposing, acted as a popular cultural vehicle for examining new and deeply disturbing knowledges of urban life and disease, by parodying and creatively reworking hegemonic spaces of scientific discovery. Indeed, the Montmartre cabaret can be interpreted as a kind of parody of the scientific laboratory itself, one that enabled the knowledges emerging from the opaque space of the laboratory to be experienced and reinterpreted.
This parody with the scientific laboratory functioned in at least three ways. First, just as experimental laboratories set out to create ideal environments for nurturing pathological elements under controlled conditions, the Montmartre cabarets represented themselves as spaces in which diseased, decadent or corrupt vital energies, rather than being repressed as they were in the everyday spaces of normal life , could instead be accentuated, exaggerated, and hence made visible and experienced.
Parodic performances of hysteria and other perceptual diseases see Chapter 7 created alternative theatres of truth in which dominant framings of biological health might be tested and contested. Second, just as the authority of the scientific discoveries of figures such as Pasteur and Charcot derived from elaborate sets of performances that dramatized his new discoveries about the nature of life, the Montmartre cabarets offered a space in which emerging knowledges of life, vitality and disease could be displayed in spectacular and entertaining cultural performances.
These parodic performances, however, also made it possible for audiences to participate, for a short while and in a safe environment, in modern experiences of diseased social and cultural life. Part of the reason for the huge popularity of the Montmartre cabarets arguably derived from their ability to invent highly participatory cultural experiments in which audiences could test emerging socio-biological discourses concerning the city at the level of their own lived experiences.
We will explore in more detail the ways in which Montmartre cabarets played on this spatial separation in Chapter 5. Here, however, it is interesting to observe the extent to which the government and police, through their careful monitoring of the Montmartre cabarets, unwittingly participated in this parody of the controlled scientific experiment.
By policing Montmartre as an experimental biopolitical space for governing through freedom, the police, as we will see in the following section, themselves contributed to a performance of the Montmartre cabaret as a space not wholly dissimilar to a laboratory in which dangerous biological forces could be allowed to multiply and make themselves visible whilst being contained within a spatially delimited, safe space. Contained Freedom The police were inevitably troubled by the emergence of these spaces of disorderly, diseased, troublesome urban life. Rather than controlling them more tightly, however, there is clear evidence to suggest that police took the exact opposite approach, offering the Montmartre cabarets an unprecedented degree of freedom.
In a fascinating letter from the Prefect of the Police to the Minister for Education and the Arts, the Prefect acknowledges the extraordinary liberty that had been granted to Montmartre cabarets. So whilst some of the artists and spectators who spent time in Montmartre perceived the area as a quasi-utopian space in which new forms of morality, politics, and cultural expression could be practised free of outside interference, the cultural politics of Montmartre should be seen in terms of wider state strategy of managing social, political and cultural dissent by confining it to specific areas that were seen to be less likely to adversely affect potentially rebellious youngsters.
The life of the city in the newly liberalized Republic was not to be controlled through the disciplinary grids and techniques seeking to define the precise nature of desirable behaviour, but through biopolitical mechanisms that could leave room for a proliferation of contingencies, surprises and petty disruptions. The experimental freedoms allowed to the district of Montmartre, that is, can be seen as experiments in the liberal art of governing through freedom. And like a laboratory, the activities there were closely monitored and carefully recorded.
First, police agents were careful to note any possible political activities in cabarets, such as private meetings, seditious songs, or political speeches. Until the flowering of the anarchist movement in the s, however discussed in Chapter 8 , on the whole they found little to trouble them unduly. Performers at most Montmartre cabarets knew full well that they monitored with undercover police spies recording being identified and gently mocked by the performers and were careful to stay on the right side of the law.
Seditious activities recorded by the police were very minor. On 14 June , for example, a highly suspicious agent reported that an evening event illegally requiring letters of invitation had been held in the Chat Noir. He saw that our true happiness is For him to buy another one, Beginning again the five billion That was taken from us by the Germans.
The unusual mixture of bohemians, prostitutes, and pimps sharing the same space as curious bourgeois revellers and students created an intoxicating yet often inflammatory atmosphere. Salis clearly faced up uphill struggle in keeping criminal elements out of the cabaret, and often summoned police officers to help him eject troublemakers. The most dramatic episode recorded by the police, however, which received widespread coverage in the press, occurred after Salis had ejected a pimp from the cabaret.
When the pimp returned with 20 companions demanding entry, Salis refused to let them in, and a brawl broke out in the street. During the brawl, one of the Chat Noir waiters received a blow to the head and died some hours later with a fractured skull. In a judicial inquiry, it was decided that the mortal blow had come from none other than Salis himself, with a misdirected blow inflicted shortly after Salis had regained consciousness subsequent to been knocked out by a blow from a chair. Salis was prosecuted for involuntary homicide but, in another show of leniency to Montmartre figures, was not jailed, and the cabaret was allowed to remain open.
Many newspapers hinted that in fact the pimps were responsible for the death, but had clubbed together to form a united front against Salis. Police agents merely pointed out that there was nothing surprising in the incident. One wrote: The Chat Noir affair has nothing extraordinary about it. There have been twenty brawls in this establishment. Salis is certainly not at all interesting. A report on the 17 June , when the cabaret at the height of its popularity, described the scene: The establishment the Chat Noir, on rue de Laval, attracted an enormous multitude of revellers and visitors all yesterday evening.
ACHAT / VENTE DE DISQUES VINYLS 33 T / 45 T / MAXI / PICTURE
Among them were numerous well-heeled people in good company, many of whom had come from far away, and hackney carriages and chauffeur-driven cars brought members of society. All this commotion, the police agent reported, was causing significant irritation amongst the local population. The street was blocked by carriages; the crowds pressed in and for the whole evening traffic was impeded.
It is undeniable that such a state of affairs, if allowed to continue, will only exacerbate the weariness and prejudice of the inhabitants of the area, as well as of the people whose leisure or business take them to rue Laval. Nevertheless, Montmartre became a symbol of free speech, and whenever this was threatened, such as when the Pierrot Noir was shut down by police, supposedly for flouting safety regulations, furious protests were voiced in several major newspapers. Indeed, as I will explore further in following chapters, Montmartre artists were aiming precisely to uncover new forms of urban vitality and liveliness.
Montmartre, that is, was the privileged site in the experimental elaboration a new diagram of urban government. In the following three chapters, I wish to unpack this argument in more detail by exploring the ways in which Montmartre cabarets explored the pinning down of urban vitality through three connected modes of experience: affect, representation and perception. In these three chapters I offer a detailed exploration of the urban culture, the forms of authority, and use of humour in the literature and performances at the Chat Noir.
The three chapters tackled, respectively, the affective, representational, and perceptual life of the city in the cultural experiments of the Chat Noir. The foundation of this ethos was an interest in creating a new, dynamic experience of place by means of humour, irony and buffoonery. Laughter had a particularly powerful place in the late nineteenth-century urban politics of affect, and was a means by which the tragic elements of modern life could be re-appropriated in creative and productive new ways.
Through humour, Montmartre could be transformed from a deprived, lifeless neighbourhood, far removed from the supposed benefits of modernization, into a lively, dynamic neighbourhood possessing a powerfully felt sense of place. In seeking to understand this, the chapter contributes to an understanding of the social role of humour in producing space, place and landscape.
In humour, as we will see, the Montmartre avant- garde found a way of bringing new life to the urban environment and experimenting with new ways of creating an experience of place. The Free and Proud City of Montmartre In a poster for the municipal elections could be seen displayed throughout Montmartre. This is no mistake!
It must be a free and proud city. Separation of Montmartre from the state; 2. Abolition of the local area tax and replacement of this hurtful levy with a tax on the lottery, reorganized under the direction of Montmartre, which would allow our district to meet its needs and to help the nineteen mercantile, miserable districts of Paris. Protection of public food. Protection of workers nationwide. One thing that the poster reveals, however, is a fierce attachment to the neighbourhood of Montmartre.
Montmartre was not just a place, but the expression of an ethos, a style of life. It had become an emblem of autonomy, freedom and creativity. The Chat Noir, and the artistic groups attached to it such as the Fumistes, the Hydropathes and the Incoherents, was at the heart of attempts to re- imagine the possibilities of urban community and to engineer a deeply felt experience of place. Their use of humour in order to achieve this sense of place is particularly striking. Romanticist Montmartre and the Destruction of Place For the Romantics of the mid-nineteenth century, the village of Montmartre, not yet annexed by Paris, had been imagined as a rural idyll: an authentic refuge from the alienation of the Metropolis.
Anne Carter Oxford, The processes of modernization and urban expansion, however, quickly led Montmartre to acquire less idyllic characteristics. The area, largely proletarian, was formally annexed into the city in By the s, Montmartre, through its association with poverty and the insurrection of the Paris Commune, was widely considered an unhealthy milieu in which natural life had become dangerously excessive or perverted.
It seemed to be isolated from the healthy economic flows of the modern city — a neighbourhood in which any genuine sense of place or natural vitality had been destroyed. Nonetheless, owing to cheap rents and remnants of a village-like feel, during the s Montmartre had become a fashionable area for Impressionist artists to work. The art world was undergoing a rapid change during this time, as the collapse of the Second Empire in precipitated the end of the close relationship between artist and state.
For all Gerard de Nerval, Promenades et Souvenirs. Lettres a Jenny Pandora Paris, Cited in Jullian. Margaret Mauldon Oxford, , pp. Eventually they found their home in the Chat Noir, which soon became the loudest public voice of the spirit of Montmartre. Through humour, these artists sought a means by which to regenerate the life and vitality of the neighbourhood. From the start it aggressively promoted a new, modern myth of Montmartre. New York, In opposition to the new spiritual outlook envisioned by the state, it sketched the first elements of a different urban imaginary, one involving a rejection of traditional authority, an experiment of new, creative forms of modernity, and a celebration of the creativity and authority of embodied experience.
The article evoked an interestingly ambiguous imaginative geography. As well as portraying it as a place of anti-clericalism and anti-traditionalism, it also depicted Montmartre as the exact centre of the new modern world. The Biblical tradition, the article claimed, had erroneously neglected to identify Montmartre as the original soil of humanity. Montmartre was to be the centre of a new, anti-authoritarian world. The humour of the Chat Noir journal portrayed it as a dynamic, centripetal force, drawing the rest of the world inexorably towards it.
An illustration in the journal shows a line of bourgeois people, depicted as farmyard animals, waiting to be photographed outside the Chat Noir Figure 5. Tout le monde y passera!