Saturday, June 4, 2011

Loving and hating Julius

This seems to be the appropriate title for Ikhide's review of Teju Cole's "Open City."

"I loved Julius, I hated Julius. He is a Walter Mitty character, a creep even. Julius is eclectic, some would say too eager to appear so, precise, almost anally-retentive. knows his Chopin, Bach partitas, Beethoven sonatas and Shostakovich symphonies by heart. The peasant reader asks: Who are these people that Julius knows on a last-name basis? Who is Veláquez? Gilles Deleuze? Gaston Bachelard? Paul Claude? Julius comes across as a caricature of the African intellectual schooled in Western ways and loudly wearing his intellect like a pimp overwhelmed by his loud clothes."

I think I recognize some of these European guys. Will I be able to recognize a character who showcases his knowledge of them?

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