Of all the French cultural exports over the last years or so, ‘pataphysics–the science of imaginary solutions and the laws governing exceptions–has proven. In this account of the evolution and influence of ‘pataphysics, Andrew Hugill offers an informed exposition of a rich and difficult territory, staying aloft on a. 13 Nov Frenchman Alfred Jarry (–), a diminutive queer alcoholic raised on Rabelais and steeped in Symbolism, could be called the John the.

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The apostrophe denotes the missing piece of information that would allow for a concrete definition, hence it is intrinsically pataphysical. I enjoyed the reverse timeline structure. Follow comments here with pataphysics a useless guide RSS feed.

The Current Principal Articles. A respectable case for Brexit. Cazz Anders rated it liked it Jul 05, Jul 28, Kate rated it liked it Shelves: It is generally agreed that it lies around the roots of many of the key artistic and cultural developments of the twentieth century, including absurdism, Dada, futurism, surrealism, situationism, and others.

‘Pataphysics: A Useless Guide by Andrew Hugill

The full definition, of course, reads: It’s purpose is, of course, precisely to lead the mind to a state of heightened pataphysical awareness. It is certainly serious, but in its seriousness is its humor. An objective theory of Modernist aesthetics For much more, please consult our partial archivebelow on this page. Les Herbiers vs PSG, The many colorful stories about Jarry tend pataphysics a useless guide give the impression that he was some kind of experiment in living-as-art.

Morton Feldman and the listening body at the Hugh Lane, Dublin. In fact, that would be a worthwhile subject for a detailed study, assuming one hasn’t been made, already.

pataphysics a useless guide Had it not been for a handful of people who carefully tried to balance the rest of pataphysics with the enormous mass of Ubu, Jarry would have survived simply as the creator of that singular character and nothing more. Taken as a whole, they represent an indispensable collection of literary and critical documents still active patapphysics this day.

Lovecraft is also quite pataphysical. It is profoundly useless or, as pataphysicians prefer to say, inutilious, but nevertheless manages to inform and inflect the world. Both men seem to have treated their lives as an experiment in living, an experiment driven not so much by a traditional scientific spirit of inquiry, but more by an overwhelming subjectivity that produced an indifference both to themselves and to the material world.

But I think it is due that the author is British, and the U. Stronger cases could be made for those two writers. Escapism, whether from oneself or from the banalities of daily existence, does seem to be a feature of pataphysics. Joshua Buhs rated it liked it Jun 24, The relentless fury of Ed Dorn 1. Pataphysics a useless guide cites cult classic Donnie Darko Kelly, as an example of pataphysical film it isbut neglects Being John Malkovich Jonze,which is suffused with Jarryisms: Friday, 27 June at The writing is generally clear, in contrast to much deliberately obscure writing by pataphysicians, but Hugill inevitably struggles with the delicate balance of the comic and the serious which lies at the heart of the entire pataphysical enterprise.

Andrew Knox rated it really liked it Dec 28, When I finished the book, I immediately reread the start, pataphysics a useless guide it made more sense. The reinvention of a Dada spirit of nihilism, which had so well captured the sense of futility of World War I, seemed dangerously trivial at this time. He offers many substantial excerpts in English translation from primary sources, intercalated with a thorough explication of key themes and events of ‘pataphysical history.

Pataphysics represents the intellectual sucessor to Derrida and his epigones. Not everyone’s cup of tea, but if you are a Pataphysician, which you are, either aware or unaware: Especially the 1st chapter that deals with the present was very useful to me: Pataphysics a useless guide will lead us out of the present intellectual wilderness?

In this account of the evolution and influence of ‘pataphysics, Andrew Hugill offers an informed exposition of a rich and difficult territory, staying aloft on a tightrope pataphysics a useless guide between the twin dangers of oversimplifying a serious subject and taking a joke too seriously. Prominent non-members such as Gilles Deleuze pataphysics a useless guide Harold Bloom have written admiringly about Pataphysics.

Apr 24, Clinton rated it really liked it. Originating in the wild imagination of French poet and playwright Alfred Pataphysics a useless guide and his schoolmates, resisting clear definition, purposefully useless, and almost impossible to understa Of all the French cultural exports over the last years or so, ‘pataphysics–the science of imaginary solutions and the laws governing exceptions–has proven to be one of the most durable.

However, it should be noted that pataphysics a useless guide word “pataphysics” itself was infrequently used even by these individuals. The word is often used quite loosely to evoke anything that seems wacky, weird, or bizarrely incomprehensible.


Pataphysics will examine the laws governing exceptions, and will explain the universe supplementary to this one. The chapters are rough-and-loose; subheadings and pataphysics a useless guide quotations abound which receive little-to-no analysisso much so that one feels Hugill wants to make an anthology, not a book. The imaginary Paris was particularly important for those artists, thinkers, and pataphysicians who were displaced by the war, an idea summed up pataphysics a useless guide Marchel Duchamp’s ready-made, Air de Paris.

Sergio rated it really liked it May 11, A Useless Guide Guiide Hugill. Hugill rightly albeit briefly discusses the slippery realities of Philip K. Drawing on more than twenty-five years’ research, Hugill maps the ‘pataphysical presence partly conscious and acknowledged but largely unconscious and unacknowledged in literature, theater, music, the visual arts, and the culture at large, and even detects ‘pataphysical influence in the social sciences and the sciences.

Guidw some of the connections to non-pataphysical figures, such as Joyce and Borges, are too vague or strained to be fully convincing or meaningful.

My problem with the book is that it is at times very academic, yet there pataphysics a useless guide wonderful stories within the pages. Following the fascination of painters since Bonnard, Rouault, and Picasso with the monstrous figure of Ubu, many of them pahaphysics been drawn to surrealism in the patqphysics and s.

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