Monday, September 15, 2014

In re Rice v. Rice

Or rather -- not that spat in and around the elevator, but in re the personal affairs of those who, subsequent to those unfortunate events, became Mr. and Mrs. Rice (may Providence smile upon their union).    Far be it from me to barge into the marital matters of those who would rather be left alone;  but near is it to every other Net-head and Senator and her cousin, to sound off about it, to demand action, to propose this, to demand that.

There are wheels within -- layers beneath -- spirals around,  that case.  It is -- a noumenon, unknowable -- a Ding-an-sich (as Kant put it so nicely -- really, Flaubert could not have phrased it better).  Accordingly, I would not comment -- save that, by merest chance, just a moment ago  I read a vignette by the extraordinarily deft and perceptive writer Langston Hughes, “Who’s Passing for Who?” (apparently written during the entre-deux-guerres; first collected in Laughing to Keep from Crying, 1952; reprinted in the Langston Hughes Reader), which shoots like a shaft through the case.   And enchases it in a much more curious setting than you will readily find online.  Check it out.

It's a-a-l-l-ll good ...

[For a review of the original collection, by another fine writer of the time, try this: ]

[Bescheidene Randbemerkung:  The proposal to fix the matter, by adding yet a third Rice to the mix, as some have proposed, would be perhaps to overseason the ragoût.]


[Update]  Ann Hornaday notices the underbelly of the current public obsession.

In movies, violence against women  lets filmmakers indulge toxic fantasies
“A Walk Among the Tombstones” also pivots around a plot device that has become as troublesome as it is overused in Hollywood: an inciting incident of sexualized violence against a woman so heinous that it demands nothing short of a brutalizing rampage to avenge. It’s a trope trotted out with similar making-the-doughnuts roteness in “The Equalizer,” due out next Friday, in which Denzel Washington plays a freelance crime-fighter determined to bring rough justice to a group of thugs who have nearly beaten to death a teenage prostitute he recently befriended.

Incidentally … It is a good rule of thumb that, if a Hollywood movie features a teenage prostitute, it is a reeking crock of mauvaise foi.

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