Faust Pas

Faust Pas

Do you enjoy enemas? I don't. But I would get 3 in a row instead of reading more gibberish by Derrida clones. There are so many, and they're so nauseatingly ubiquitous, that I cannot figure out if these humans-come-keyboards are emulating that white-haired, pompous turd conscious or unconsciously.

Case in point: that What the Myth of Faust Can Teach Us piece on the BBC Culture webpage or, as it is also known, Fancy-Pants Pravda, i.e. FPP. It is not that the author, in his unparalleled magnanimity, is not interested in extracting pearls of wisdom from the depths of such an obscure and complex opus to then spoon feed them to us (ignorant peasants) for moral edification. It is that, well, it's kind of douchey to copy paste stuff from Wikipedia and then add some political message at the end, and try to lube it up in order to sell it as some ivory tower analysis.

Listen up: Faust is simple. It is about the possibility of choosing between moral tranquility and worldly fulfillment, and, if so, about actually taking that step, its possible consequences, and the tradeoffs involved. That simplicity is precisely where its power resides. Like all enduring folklore that is used ad nauseam without losing its oomph, it is the sum of thousands of years of observing and pondering about behavior, telling and retelling stories about it, acting it out, referring to it, and seeing the everyday existence of the individual within the community through that prism. The culture(s) from which the folktales emanate show, through them, what are its canonical emotions and motivations. That is why that Anderson guy was unto something with his "law of auto-correction", i.e. that in the process of telling and retelling stories, locals will immediately boo and throw tomatoes at any version that deviates too much from the core story they know and expect.

What this dude of the article I referred above does is, after walking through some Wikipedia entries on Faust, pluck a withering flower from the garden of Derrida. Commonplaces aside, mostly about infinite meanings and that jazz, the writer goes immediately into the contradiction-based dialectics of Marxism and, since binary oppositions aren't capable of producing a synthesis (as per the Le Douche), it concludes that Faust is about the (of course irreconcilable) choice where, on one side, we have the evil West with its civilizing grand plans and obsession for progress, its Mephistophelian destruction of the environment (because fuck it who loves trees anyway, right?), demonic smartphones, and conservative politicians; and, on the other... well, on the other there's nothing. Yeah, correct, faithful to the indeterminacy and sterile deconstruction, Western binaries are vomited but also there's no meaning at all, no solution.

Frankly, this is as close as it gets to a big, flabby cake of mental masturbation with coitus interruptus icing on top (no pun intended).