A Modest Challenge

Jeffrey St. Clair sitka at home.com
Wed Nov 17 22:04:25 PST 1999

Well, there are quotations and riffs on Empedocles throughout the whole book. But I can't remember if he is named directly. In fact, I'm pretty sure he isn't. Which is one of the many inside jokes. I mean the whole book is chatter, chatter, chatter and, yet, Empedocles, who is vital to the meaning of the book, is not named. I'll dig around for my copy of JR and give some examples. Empedocles was quite a character. Something of a revolutionary, leading the democratic factions on Sicily. He refused the crown that was offered to him. His philosophical dialectic set up a historical tumble between chaos and harmony. He also invented the Heisenberg Principle (or something pretty damn close), 2,400 years before that guy lived.


Michael Pollak wrote:

> On Wed, 17 Nov 1999, Jeffrey St. Clair wrote:
> > The narcissism of the Left (epitomized by statements such as: "I am
> > the REAL humanist!") would be funny, if it weren't so pathetic.The
> > Left as a political force is in a state of maximum entropy, a
> > condition reminiscent of the Ur-Chaos Theory laid out by the
> > pre-Socratic philosopher Empedocles, and parodied so savagely in
> > William Gaddis' amazing novel JR.
> I'm a super _JR_ booster, but I think I've forgotten this part. Can you
> tell me where it is?
> Michael
> __________________________________________________________________________
> Michael Pollak................New York City..............mpollak at panix.com

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