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The Education of Gore Vidal

 
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Dec, 2003 10:12 am
WFB is a novelist to exactly the same extent that Mel Gibson is a producer of biblical movies . . .
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Dec, 2003 10:13 am
Editorial Reviews
From Publishers Weekly
Author, columnist and National Review founder Buckley offers a sentimental bildungsroman about a young man's initiation into the mid-century American conservative movement. In 1956, a 19-year-old Mormon missionary, Woodroe Raynor, is assigned to fieldwork in Austria, near the Hungarian border. He loses his virginity to a Hungarian woman and is wounded as he watches Russian tanks quell the Hungarian uprising. The bullet wound is nothing, however, compared to the psychic pain of learning that his paramour is a Communist sympathizer. Woodroe later attends Princeton and begins working for the John Birch Society. He has a love affair with an Ayn Rand acolyte, leading to some heady epistolary debates about whether Rand or Birch Society founder Robert Welch is better prepared to eradicate Communism. Rand is unmasked (yet again) as a sexually and intellectually manipulative egomaniac, and the wisdom of the National Review and its staff is affirmed regularly. Vivid historical passages about the Cuban missile crisis and the Kennedy assassination, as well as cameo appearances by John Dos Passos and Alan Greenspan, are a welcome diversion from the mostly stilted prose (a sex scene between Rand and a lover is described this way: "Today her lover was being welcomed with synaesthetical concern for all the senses.... But as he lay and later groaned with writhing and release, he brought the full force of his mind to transmuted, voluptarian elation in this physical union..."). Between the self-congratulatory tone and the flat characters, the novel will appeal primarily to Buckley's devoted fans.
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Mon 1 Dec, 2003 10:31 am
Buckely's excursion into writing novels is just simply laughable -- I offer the short descriptive description of sex, obviously not trying to emulate the articulate and inspired descriptions in "Myra Breckenridge!" Just goes to show what happens when a whimpering sycophant tries to write hysterical fiction.
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kjvtrue
 
  1  
Reply Wed 4 Feb, 2004 04:49 pm
Gore dose not have much Education, instead he just got passed on.
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hobitbob
 
  1  
Reply Wed 4 Feb, 2004 07:46 pm
kjvtrue wrote:
Gore dose not have much Education, instead he just got passed on.

Okay, can someone please translate this comment from illiterate into English?
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 02:36 pm
You're bet is as good as mine. I have no idea.
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 02:37 pm
(Must be President Bush with an anonymous online handle).
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dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 02:43 pm
hobitbob wrote:
kjvtrue wrote:
Gore dose not have much Education, instead he just got passed on.

Okay, can someone please translate this comment from illiterate into English?


Hmmm - I wonder if it is supposed to mean that he failed grade after grade in school - but got promoted anyway?
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 02:45 pm
And not true.
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 06:06 pm
Quote:
Gore dose not have much Education, instead he just got passed on.


A brain-twister, to be sure.

It's not likely the hopeful beginnings of a limmerick thread, as the first of the two lines is awkwardly metered.

Neither, apparently, is it a famous quotation from some thoughtful and celebrated writer, for Barletts and google both deny having bumped into it before.

An erudite exercise in ironic deconstruction? Mayhaps. Note the singular term which gains inappropriate capitalization..."Education".

Perhaps, considering the substituion of "dose" for "does", we might read it is a sneaky homophobic allusion of a slick in-the-backdoor variety.

Lastly, turning our attention to the final two words, "passed on", we face a double-barrelled clue. Did our writer, perhaps a theologican of some sophistication, who ought to have followed the more acceptable construction of "passed over", intend to imply, mischieviously, something of moral morass, and thus, the man's mortal molting, maybe? On the other hand, the "passed on" construction could merely be the consequence of our writer having had his or her hands in some butter or other lubricant, then a slip of the fingers, and a typographical error somehow missed in the editing process? Or - let's err on the side of the author's humility (after all, I count on this with my readers) - and toss up the thesis that she or he is intentionally directing the reader's attention back upon himself or herself, and telling us precisely how we ought to engage this wonderful sentence...might the writer have meant to suggest the delightful literary phrase, "pissed on".
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dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 06:58 pm
Er - I don't think it fair to lampoon someone's written English - presumably we all express ourselves as well as we can.
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Letty
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 07:46 pm
and, Deb. Some of the most beautiful expressions come in low places.

As I once said, words and the semantics thereof have to do with the sound....That's why poetry...Mark Twain...folks who write in the vernacular ..are particularly silver tongued.
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 07:47 pm
When you presume to criticize someone for a supposed lapse of their education you can't expect not to be criticized for your own lapses even though the attempt is somewhat obscure.
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Letty
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 07:51 pm
Don't get it, Mr. Wizard. To whom are you speaking? Razz
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dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 07:55 pm
Me, I believe. I get the point, but still see aiming twin cannons of erudition at a pop gun a tad unchivalric...lol....
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Letty
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 08:04 pm
and I shall leave you with a smile:



Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree


1) Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree,

Merry, merry king of the bush is he,

Laugh, Kookaburra, Laugh, Kookaburra,

Gay your life must be.



2) Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree

Eating all the gumdrops he can see

Stop, Kookaburra, Stop, Kookaburra

Leave some there for me.

Goodnight, my friends.
0 Replies
 
hobitbob
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 09:51 pm
What's a kookaburra, and with therapy would it become a sane-oburra?
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Lightwizard
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 10:10 pm
Let's suppose Gore Vidal might get kick out of this -- since Exeter considers him one of their most accomplished alumni and where he received very high grades.
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 10:38 pm
deb

This wasn't the first encounter. Previous instances have been equally...um...disruptive.
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Feb, 2004 10:41 pm
ps

LW... did you catch this lovely little piece
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/02/05/movies/05LIBR.html
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