On account of her family moving from Italy to France and then to Switzerland Lucia became multi-lingual. With her father, she only ever spoke in Triestian Italian. The two became extremely close. Lucia worshipped him and longed for his attention. He was fascinated by her, describing this ‘fantastic being’ as a ‘wonder wild’ with a mind ‘as clear and as unsparing as the lightning.’ He was convinced that she was the true inheritor of his genius. This tall, pale and skinny girl sought to make her mark with humorous impersonations of Chaplin and then, at the age of 15, she began to dance. During the 1920s, the Parisian dance scene was going through a radically innovative and anti-balletic phase. Lucia became one of a group of experimental dancers who toured Europe. She excelled in sauvage roles. Her style was erotic rather than sensuous; one Parisian critic described it as ‘subtle and barbaric’. In 1927 she had a role as a toy soldier in Jean Renoir’s film ‘The Little Match Girl.’ The following year, a reporter for The Paris Times wrote: ‘When she reaches her full capacity for rhythmic dancing, James Joyce may yet be known as his daughter’s father.’
“For a smaller group of people, with palpably grandiose notions, it is up to everybody else to accommodate their new personality, often in a new place where they are free to be who they want to be without much question: great achievers from Bob Dylan and Oscar Wilde to Picasso and Andy Warhol have done this, often changing their name, their physical appearance, even (in the case of Joseph Conrad or Samuel Beckett) the very words they think in: how complete a remaking of oneself is replacing the Mother Tongue?”
He rose from years of hunger and disappointment to become the most renowned literary artist of the age. Walk into any bookshop or library worthy of the name and you are likely to find his work on the shelves. His candour, once censored, is now prized; his graceful prose cherished; and his struggle for recognition thoroughly documented: James Joyce was a one-off who changed literature forever.
He was also a man who, sent out by his hungry family to buy food, returned instead with a hand-painted silk scarf.
Xorandor, for example, concerns a sort of sentient silicon pebble which overdoses on Caesium, becomes convinced it is Lady Macbeth and threatens to destroy the world. The work is narrated in the form of an invented technological slang dialogue between a pair of twins and their computer.
Obituary of Christine Brooke-Rose 1923-2012 [Telegraph]
“The Descriptive Camera works a lot like a regular camera—point it at subject and press the shutter button to capture the scene. However, instead of producing an image, this prototype outputs a text description of the scene.”
Descriptive Camera, via Tom T
(Uses Mechanical Turk to create human descriptions of photographs.)
“The Quantative Easing policy of the Americans was to create a wall of money which fired up inflation in the developing world….
“in that year of asset price inflation [2008-2009]…about 1 billion people were pushed from $2 a day poverty to $1 a day poverty (or its equivalent) by inflation”
-Paul Mason, Start the Week, BBC Radio 4, 30 January 2012: Audio