An interrogation of art’s ability to face unpleasant truths. Michel Houellebecq, author of five novels including Atomised and Platform, has become possibly the world’s most famous literary pessimist. His work declares. Ben Jeffery’s Anti-Matter is the kind of intelligent, sophisticated response to provocative work that affirms criticism’s value as art in itself.

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Anti-Matter || Zero Books || Book Info

Language for Those Who Have Nothing. Will Self and Contemporary British Society. Jul 28, Christopher Condit rated it it was ok. Most compelling were Jeffery’s dissection houellebecqq modern materialist malaise, the cynicism very much in vogue at present, and of art’s role in a w Fascinating stuff here, folks. His work declares that life is painful and disappointing, death is terrifying, and the human condition is a nasty sort of joke.

Mortality, Immortality and Other Life Strategies. Not recommended unless you are writing a thesis on H. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Chi ama i libri sceglie Kobo e inMondadori. Booth recognizes why these dogmas are seductive—they play into a disaffected worldview based on alienation from religion and politics—but he offers good reasons to reject them.

Ratings and Reviews 0 0 star ratings 0 reviews. Lovecraft to the Speculative Realist philosophers. Sharp and short on Houellebecq, DFW et alart, criticism, existance and the futility of life. The Meaning of Life. A more rigorous, less stylized version of the kind of long critical essay usually associated with writers like Geoff Dyer and Pierre Bayard, Anti-Matter is a work of criticism that honors—and occasionally exceeds—its source.


Trenchant essay that highlights the tensions in Houellebecq’s work, namely what’s the point of producing art or doing anything really if his pessimistic vision of life – nothing matters in a cold, indifferent universe – is true. These writings chart Harman’s rise from Chicago sportswriter to co founder of one of Europe’s most promising philosophical movements: Books by Ben Jeffery. Sort of an argument against cynicism, but for a pessimism kept in check by the obviousness that pessimism itself is a form of logical inconsistency.

In lots of wayscynicism and by extension, pessimism about art is not only very easy now, it’s reasonable. Aug 16, Alex rated it really liked it. Ben Jeffery Ben Jeffery lives in Chicago. James Hughes rated it really liked it May 11, Or, get it for Kobo Super Points!

Houellebecq and other French writers like Virginie Despentes seem to be on one side of an interesting conversation taking place in France right now.

What you won’t have got in the televised debates, party manifestos, campaign trail propaganda and media coverage, portaining to Cameron the cipher and the social forces he represents.

Anti-matter: Michel Houellebecq and Depressive Realism

Return to Book Page. His work declares that life is painful and disappointing, death is terrifying, and the human condition is a nasty sort of joke. His work declares that life is painful and disappointing, death is terrifying, and the human condition is a nasty sort of joke. Returning to those quotations: Don’t have an account yet?

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On the Human Condition. How to write a great review Do Say what you liked best and least Describe the author’s style Explain the rating you gave Don’t Use rude and profane language Include any personal information Mention spoilers or the book’s price Recap the plot.

His writing has appeared in the Times Literary Supplement and the Guardian. Psychoanalytic Accounts of Consuming Desire. Ranging over work by David Foster Wallace, Susan Sontag, Fredric Jameson and Margaret Atwood, Anti-Matter surveys the case for pessimism, asks how a mass culture rooted in sentimentality and trivialisation manages to produce so much cynicism and apathy, and hunts for the space that remains for serious, life-affirming art.

How to Be Free. Buy this e-book at these online retailers: It’s a fantastic read.


You can remove the unavailable item s now or we’ll automatically remove it at Checkout. Along the way, most of his energy is spent trashing The Possibility of an Island, which I consider H’s houellehecq novel.

We need literature and criticism that seeks ways out, rather than allowing artists to wallow in bleak solipsism.

I’m making my way through Houellebecq’s work and am looking forward to reading Jeffery’s take on it. For such a short book, Anti-Matter elegantly makes its case about l’enfant terrible of French letters.

Buy this Paperback at these online retailers: Michel Houellebecq and Depressive Realism is literary criticism at its best.