By Denis Diderot
"Antingen det är fult eller vackert väder så har jag för vana att promenera i Palais-Royal vid femtiden på eftermiddagen."
Rameaus brorson (1762) är en roman i dialogform mellan berättaren och Rameaus brorson, som inte uträttat något och heller inte har velat uträtta något. Han är en snyltare som lever på andra. Hans motprestation är cyniska kvickheter och illusionslösa sanningar, han är ett slags hovnarr i de fina Parishemmen.Rameaus brorson överhopar berättaren med drastiska iakttagelser om narrspelen och gesterna i människornas värld, de förljugna poserna och de verkliga intressen som styr bakom alla moraliska fraser, i häftiga kast mellan ironi och allvar.
Denis Diderot (1713-1784) var upplysningsman och redaktör för den stora Encyklopedien som han trots myndigheternas motstånd drev vidare med outtömlig energi. Vid sidan av detta skrev han filosofiska avhandlingar, romaner, dialoger och dramer
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In the NY hotel rm (they turn up again in Angst)—what good’s writing? ’’ Forgotten underlined three times, as if forgotten by three forgettings. To which add today the forgetting that followed upon these notes, interrupted for the time being by the finding of the ................. 16582$ $CH3 10-11-07 15:26:56 PS PAGE 35 post-it. Is this the fourth forgetting? How many forgettings does it take to forget, then to forget, then to forget about the forgetting? I remember the forgotten roses very well, backs straight him sprawled on the couch in room 91 them erect upright legs bunched together in the hotel vase saying we’ve been waiting for you red long-stemmed, showy, stout, vigorous roses, in the room I don’t see them as they are but for what they meant.
It was only many years later I noticed the Detail that gives us access to ‘‘The Metamorphosis’’ (‘‘Die Verwandlung’’) though it is perfectly obvious in the entryway where it vegetates and stinks, the eternal cadaver posted as a warning to the reader. But as it doesn’t call out or moan or squeak the avid visitor sweeps indifferently past the prophetic vignette and throws himself into the front room from which he doesn’t emerge alive. If only you’d read the warning Nothing wouldn’t have happened.
I wept. I should have taken out the lens. 27 the eye-patch ................. 16582$ $CH2 10-11-07 15:26:55 PS PAGE 27 * * * This whole story turns on an eye, now one of the eyes of one character, now one of the eyes of the other. This comment is totally extraneous to the story’s events. It belongs to the Tale. To the Tale, that is, version 2000. Before this date a thin sheet of soundproof glass slipped itself between the story’s events and the Tale. So long as I wore a contact lens (that is, one lens) I couldn’t tell.