Welcome to Bookmarker!

This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading. Currently can only be used by a single user (myself), but I plan to extend it to support multiple users eventually.

Source code on GitHub (MIT license).

30

The truth behind these seasonally professed inadequacies of intelligence is the old obscurantist myth which holds that an ideais noxious if it is nor controlled by "common sense and "feeling": Knowledge is Evil, both grow on the same tree: culture is permitted, provided one periodically proclaims the vanity of its purposes and the limits of its power [...]; ideal culture should be nothing but a sweet rhetorical effusion, the art of words to bear witness to a transient moitening of the soul. Yet that old romantic couple, heart and head, has no reality except in an imagery of vaguely Gnostic origin, in those opiated philosophies which have always, ultimately, formed the backbone of strong regimes, the kind that get rid of intellectuals by telling them to run along and busy themselves with emotion and the ineffable. In fact, any reservations about culture is a terrorist position. To be a critic by profession, and to proclaim one doesn't understand a thing about existentialism or Marxism (as a matter of fact it is precisely these two philosophies which are declared incomprehensible), is to erect one's blindness or one's dumbness into a universal rule of perception--it is to reject Marxism and existentialism from the world: "I don't understand, therefore you are idiots."

—p.30 Criticism Blind and Dumb (29) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

The truth behind these seasonally professed inadequacies of intelligence is the old obscurantist myth which holds that an ideais noxious if it is nor controlled by "common sense and "feeling": Knowledge is Evil, both grow on the same tree: culture is permitted, provided one periodically proclaims the vanity of its purposes and the limits of its power [...]; ideal culture should be nothing but a sweet rhetorical effusion, the art of words to bear witness to a transient moitening of the soul. Yet that old romantic couple, heart and head, has no reality except in an imagery of vaguely Gnostic origin, in those opiated philosophies which have always, ultimately, formed the backbone of strong regimes, the kind that get rid of intellectuals by telling them to run along and busy themselves with emotion and the ineffable. In fact, any reservations about culture is a terrorist position. To be a critic by profession, and to proclaim one doesn't understand a thing about existentialism or Marxism (as a matter of fact it is precisely these two philosophies which are declared incomprehensible), is to erect one's blindness or one's dumbness into a universal rule of perception--it is to reject Marxism and existentialism from the world: "I don't understand, therefore you are idiots."

—p.30 Criticism Blind and Dumb (29) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
43

[...] What does it matter, after all, that margarine is nothing but grease if its efficiency is superior to that of butter? What does it matter, after all, that an Order is somewhat brutal, somewhat blind, if it allows us to live inexpensively? There we are, rid of a prejudice that used to cost us dear, too dear, that used to cost us too many scruples, too many rebellions, too many battles, and too much solitude.

I don't remember the larger point of this essay but I really like the closing sentence

—p.43 Operation Astra (41) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

[...] What does it matter, after all, that margarine is nothing but grease if its efficiency is superior to that of butter? What does it matter, after all, that an Order is somewhat brutal, somewhat blind, if it allows us to live inexpensively? There we are, rid of a prejudice that used to cost us dear, too dear, that used to cost us too many scruples, too many rebellions, too many battles, and too much solitude.

I don't remember the larger point of this essay but I really like the closing sentence

—p.43 Operation Astra (41) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
46

[...] Happiness, in this universe, is to act out a sort of domestic confinement: "psychological" questionnaires, shortcuts, household devices, and timesavers, that whole implemental paradise of magazines, like Elle or L'Express, which glorifies the closure of the hearth, its aproned and slippered introversion, everything which busies home life, infantilizes it, accentuates its innocence, and severs it from a widened social responsibility. "Two hearts, one hearth." The world still exists, of course, but love spiritualizes the hearth and the hearth masks the slum: indigence is exorcised by its ideal image, poverty.

for SJ: the idea of turning inwards in a relationship

—p.46 Conjugals (44) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

[...] Happiness, in this universe, is to act out a sort of domestic confinement: "psychological" questionnaires, shortcuts, household devices, and timesavers, that whole implemental paradise of magazines, like Elle or L'Express, which glorifies the closure of the hearth, its aproned and slippered introversion, everything which busies home life, infantilizes it, accentuates its innocence, and severs it from a widened social responsibility. "Two hearts, one hearth." The world still exists, of course, but love spiritualizes the hearth and the hearth masks the slum: indigence is exorcised by its ideal image, poverty.

for SJ: the idea of turning inwards in a relationship

—p.46 Conjugals (44) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
55

[...] I merely wonder at the enormous consumption of such signs that the public makes. I see people reassured by the spectacular identity of a morphology and of a vocation; in no doubt about the latter because it recognizes the former; having no more access to the real experience of the apostolate than by its bric-a-brac, and growing quite used to acquiring a clear conscience by merely looking in the shopwindows of sanctity; and I'm troubled that a society which so greedily consumes the posters of charity forgets to ask itself questions about its consequences, its uses, and its limits. And I begin to wonder if the lovely and touching iconography of the Abbé Pierre is not the alibi by which a sizable part of the nation authorizes itself, once again, to substitute the signs of charity for the reality of justice.

—p.55 Iconography of Abbé Pierre (53) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

[...] I merely wonder at the enormous consumption of such signs that the public makes. I see people reassured by the spectacular identity of a morphology and of a vocation; in no doubt about the latter because it recognizes the former; having no more access to the real experience of the apostolate than by its bric-a-brac, and growing quite used to acquiring a clear conscience by merely looking in the shopwindows of sanctity; and I'm troubled that a society which so greedily consumes the posters of charity forgets to ask itself questions about its consequences, its uses, and its limits. And I begin to wonder if the lovely and touching iconography of the Abbé Pierre is not the alibi by which a sizable part of the nation authorizes itself, once again, to substitute the signs of charity for the reality of justice.

—p.55 Iconography of Abbé Pierre (53) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
56

[...] But make no mistake: women must not suppose they can enjoy the advantages of this arrangement without first submitting to the eternal status of femininity. Women are on earth to give men children; let them write all they like, let them ornament their condition, but on no account must they leave it: their biblical destiny is not to be disturbed by the advantage which has been shared with them, and they must forthwith pay, by the tribute of their maternity, for this bohemianism naturally attached to the writer's life.

Therefore be courageous, be free: play at being men, write as they do; but never get far away from them; live under their gaze, compensate for your novels by your children; enjoy your freedom, but be sure to come back to your condition. A novel, a child, a little feminism, a little conjugality, fasten art's adventure to the solid pillars of the home: both will greatly profit from the reciprocation; where myths are concerned, mutual help is always fruitful.

[...] And so all is for the best in the best of worlds--Elle's world: women, be confident you can very likely accede as well as men to the superior status of creation. But husbands too should quickly be reassured: their wives will not be taken away from them for all that, but remain no less a natural and available genitrix. Elle puts on its nimble show right out of Molière, says Yes on one side and No on the other, careful to upset no one; like Don Juan between his two peasant girls, Elle says to women: you're worth just as much as men; and to men: your wives will never be anything but women.

At first men seem absent from this double parturition; children and novels appear to come by themselves, and both belong only to the mother; well, after seeing seventy editions of works and offspring in the same parentheses, you might suppose they were all fruits of the imagination and of dreams, miraculous products of an ideal parthenogenesis which would present a woman with both the Balzacian joys of creation and the tender joys of maternity. Where is the man in this family portrait? Nowhere and everywhere, like a sky, a horizon, an authority which simultaneously determines and limits a condition. Such is the world of Elle: here women are always a homogeneous species, a constituted body jealous of its privileges, even more enamored of its servitudes; here men are never on the inside, femininity is pure, free, powerful; but men are everywhere outside, exerting pressure on all sides, making everything exist; they are eternally the creative absence, that of the Racinian god: a world without men but entirely constituted by the male gaze, the feminine world of Elle is precisely that of the gynoceum.

In all of Elle's functions we find this double movement: close the gynocceum, then and only then release women inside. Love, work, write, be femmes de lettres or businesswomen, but always remember that men exist, and that you are not made they are: your order is free on condition that it depends on his; your freedom is a luxury, possible only if you first acknowledge the obligations of your nature. Write if you like, we shall always be quite proud; but don't forget, on the other hand, to produce children, for that is your destiny. A Jesuit morality: come to terms with the morality of your condition, but never compromise about the dogma on which it rests.

on Elle listing female authors along with the number of children they have

soooo good

—p.56 Novels and Children (56) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

[...] But make no mistake: women must not suppose they can enjoy the advantages of this arrangement without first submitting to the eternal status of femininity. Women are on earth to give men children; let them write all they like, let them ornament their condition, but on no account must they leave it: their biblical destiny is not to be disturbed by the advantage which has been shared with them, and they must forthwith pay, by the tribute of their maternity, for this bohemianism naturally attached to the writer's life.

Therefore be courageous, be free: play at being men, write as they do; but never get far away from them; live under their gaze, compensate for your novels by your children; enjoy your freedom, but be sure to come back to your condition. A novel, a child, a little feminism, a little conjugality, fasten art's adventure to the solid pillars of the home: both will greatly profit from the reciprocation; where myths are concerned, mutual help is always fruitful.

[...] And so all is for the best in the best of worlds--Elle's world: women, be confident you can very likely accede as well as men to the superior status of creation. But husbands too should quickly be reassured: their wives will not be taken away from them for all that, but remain no less a natural and available genitrix. Elle puts on its nimble show right out of Molière, says Yes on one side and No on the other, careful to upset no one; like Don Juan between his two peasant girls, Elle says to women: you're worth just as much as men; and to men: your wives will never be anything but women.

At first men seem absent from this double parturition; children and novels appear to come by themselves, and both belong only to the mother; well, after seeing seventy editions of works and offspring in the same parentheses, you might suppose they were all fruits of the imagination and of dreams, miraculous products of an ideal parthenogenesis which would present a woman with both the Balzacian joys of creation and the tender joys of maternity. Where is the man in this family portrait? Nowhere and everywhere, like a sky, a horizon, an authority which simultaneously determines and limits a condition. Such is the world of Elle: here women are always a homogeneous species, a constituted body jealous of its privileges, even more enamored of its servitudes; here men are never on the inside, femininity is pure, free, powerful; but men are everywhere outside, exerting pressure on all sides, making everything exist; they are eternally the creative absence, that of the Racinian god: a world without men but entirely constituted by the male gaze, the feminine world of Elle is precisely that of the gynoceum.

In all of Elle's functions we find this double movement: close the gynocceum, then and only then release women inside. Love, work, write, be femmes de lettres or businesswomen, but always remember that men exist, and that you are not made they are: your order is free on condition that it depends on his; your freedom is a luxury, possible only if you first acknowledge the obligations of your nature. Write if you like, we shall always be quite proud; but don't forget, on the other hand, to produce children, for that is your destiny. A Jesuit morality: come to terms with the morality of your condition, but never compromise about the dogma on which it rests.

on Elle listing female authors along with the number of children they have

soooo good

—p.56 Novels and Children (56) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
66

First of all, nothing is more irritating than heroism without an object. It is a serious matter for a society to start developing the forms of its virtues gratuitously. If the dangers incurred by young Bichon (floods, wild animals, diseases, etc.) were real, it was simply stupid to impose them, on the sole pretext of going to Africa to paint and to acquire the dubious distinction of spreading on canvas "a debauch of sun and light"; it would be even more reprehensible to pass off such stupidity as a fine piece of audacity, so decorative and so touching. One sees how courage functions here: it is a formal and hollow act (the more unmotivated it is, the more respect it inspires); we are at the heart of Boy Scout civilization, where the code of sentiments and values is completely detached from concrete problems of solidarity or progress. It is the old myth of "character," in other words, "training.” Bichon's exploits are of the same sort as spectacular feats of mountain climbing: demonstrations of an ethical order, which receive their ultimate value from the publicity they are given. In our culture, there frequently corresponds to the socialized forms of collective sport a superlative form of star sport: here physical effort does not institute man's apprenticeship to his group, but instead an ethic of vanity, an exoticism of endurance, a minor mystique of risk, monstrously severed from any concern with sociability.

—p.66 Bichon Among the Blacks (66) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

First of all, nothing is more irritating than heroism without an object. It is a serious matter for a society to start developing the forms of its virtues gratuitously. If the dangers incurred by young Bichon (floods, wild animals, diseases, etc.) were real, it was simply stupid to impose them, on the sole pretext of going to Africa to paint and to acquire the dubious distinction of spreading on canvas "a debauch of sun and light"; it would be even more reprehensible to pass off such stupidity as a fine piece of audacity, so decorative and so touching. One sees how courage functions here: it is a formal and hollow act (the more unmotivated it is, the more respect it inspires); we are at the heart of Boy Scout civilization, where the code of sentiments and values is completely detached from concrete problems of solidarity or progress. It is the old myth of "character," in other words, "training.” Bichon's exploits are of the same sort as spectacular feats of mountain climbing: demonstrations of an ethical order, which receive their ultimate value from the publicity they are given. In our culture, there frequently corresponds to the socialized forms of collective sport a superlative form of star sport: here physical effort does not institute man's apprenticeship to his group, but instead an ethic of vanity, an exoticism of endurance, a minor mystique of risk, monstrously severed from any concern with sociability.

—p.66 Bichon Among the Blacks (66) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
69

We still live in a pre-Voltairean mentality; that is what must be constantly repeated. For since the time of Montesquieu or of Voltaire, if we were astonished by the Persians or the Hurons, at least it was to grant them the benefits of ingenuity. Today, Voltaire would not write the adventures of Bichon the way Match has done: instead he would imagine some cannibal (or Korean) Bichon contending with the napalmed puppet show of the West.

—p.69 Bichon Among the Blacks (66) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

We still live in a pre-Voltairean mentality; that is what must be constantly repeated. For since the time of Montesquieu or of Voltaire, if we were astonished by the Persians or the Hurons, at least it was to grant them the benefits of ingenuity. Today, Voltaire would not write the adventures of Bichon the way Match has done: instead he would imagine some cannibal (or Korean) Bichon contending with the napalmed puppet show of the West.

—p.69 Bichon Among the Blacks (66) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
74

Still, in that deified countenance, something sharper than a mask appears: a sort of deliberate and therefore human relation between the curve of the nostrils and the superciliary arcade, a rare, individual function between two zones of the face; the mask is merely an addition of lines, the face is above all a thematic recall of the former to the latter. Garbo's fate represents that fragile moment when cinema is about to extract an existential beauty from an essential beauty, when the archetype will be inflected toward the fascination of perishable figures, when the clarity of carnal essences will give way to a lyric expression of Woman.

I think the sentiments are kinda BS but the writing is lovely

—p.74 Garbo's Face (73) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

Still, in that deified countenance, something sharper than a mask appears: a sort of deliberate and therefore human relation between the curve of the nostrils and the superciliary arcade, a rare, individual function between two zones of the face; the mask is merely an addition of lines, the face is above all a thematic recall of the former to the latter. Garbo's fate represents that fragile moment when cinema is about to extract an existential beauty from an essential beauty, when the archetype will be inflected toward the fascination of perishable figures, when the clarity of carnal essences will give way to a lyric expression of Woman.

I think the sentiments are kinda BS but the writing is lovely

—p.74 Garbo's Face (73) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
111

[...] the grandiloquent designation of the Bible held at arm's length like the universal can opener of a quack peddler [...]

on Le Grand Robert

—p.111 Billy Graham at the Vel' d'Hiv' (109) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

[...] the grandiloquent designation of the Bible held at arm's length like the universal can opener of a quack peddler [...]

on Le Grand Robert

—p.111 Billy Graham at the Vel' d'Hiv' (109) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago
149

There are still people for whom a strike is a scandal: i.e., not only a mistake, a disorder, or a misdemeanor, but a moral crime, an intolerable action which in their eyes is an offense to Nature. Inadmissible, scandalous, revolting are the words used by certain readers of Le Figaro about a recent strike. This is a language which dates, in fact, from the Restoration and which expresses its profound mentality; that was the period when the bourgeoisie, only recently in power, operated a kind of crasis between Morality and Nature, giving the one the protection of the other: fearing they would have to naturalize Morality, they moralized Nature, pretended to identify the political and the narural order, and ended by declaring immoral everything which contested the structural laws of the society they were determined to defend. To Charles X's prefects as to Le Figaro's readers today, a strike seemed first of all a challenge to the inscriptions of moralized reason: to strike is "to defy the world," i.e., to infringe less a civic than a "natural legality," to attack the philosophic basis of bourgeois society, that mixture of morality and logic which is common sense.

For the scandal proceeds from an inconsistency: a strike is scandalous because it affects precisely those whom it does not concern. [...] to set striker against taxpayer is to constitute the world into a theater, to derive from the total man a special actor, and to oppose these arbitrary actors to each other in the lie of a symbolic structure which pretends to believe that the part is merely a perfect reduction of the whole.

—p.149 The Man in the Street on Strike (149) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago

There are still people for whom a strike is a scandal: i.e., not only a mistake, a disorder, or a misdemeanor, but a moral crime, an intolerable action which in their eyes is an offense to Nature. Inadmissible, scandalous, revolting are the words used by certain readers of Le Figaro about a recent strike. This is a language which dates, in fact, from the Restoration and which expresses its profound mentality; that was the period when the bourgeoisie, only recently in power, operated a kind of crasis between Morality and Nature, giving the one the protection of the other: fearing they would have to naturalize Morality, they moralized Nature, pretended to identify the political and the narural order, and ended by declaring immoral everything which contested the structural laws of the society they were determined to defend. To Charles X's prefects as to Le Figaro's readers today, a strike seemed first of all a challenge to the inscriptions of moralized reason: to strike is "to defy the world," i.e., to infringe less a civic than a "natural legality," to attack the philosophic basis of bourgeois society, that mixture of morality and logic which is common sense.

For the scandal proceeds from an inconsistency: a strike is scandalous because it affects precisely those whom it does not concern. [...] to set striker against taxpayer is to constitute the world into a theater, to derive from the total man a special actor, and to oppose these arbitrary actors to each other in the lie of a symbolic structure which pretends to believe that the part is merely a perfect reduction of the whole.

—p.149 The Man in the Street on Strike (149) by Roland Barthes 1 year, 4 months ago