Friday, December 07, 2007

Clearly a mistranslation

Via somewhere (apologies) to el Beeb:

the grand old man of French letters, 89-year-old novelist and French Academy member Maurice Druon, who in a blistering retort accused Mr Morrison of confusing "culture and entertainment."

"Culture is not determined by this week's box-office returns. Culture takes place over the duration," said Mr Druon, who noted that it was the "fourth or fifth" occasion on which he's taken up arms over the years to disprove an alleged "Death of French Civilisation".

"Disprove"? I don't see any "proof" here. I see a statement - possibly (iff you are French) an authoritative statement. Bit like the Pope speaking ex cathedra, I think or, if you wish to be logical about it, the fallacy of the "argument from authority".

I have to say that I agree with Mr Druon that commercial value does not equal culture (but then neither is brass rubbing.) On the other hand, Mr Morrison clearly has a point that, even if you allow for those starving in garrets in Montmartre, there doesn't appear to be too much recently of lasting artistic or cultural merit from across La Manche.

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