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Dr. Silverman is not a bad teacher. All the readings are interesting, from Ruskin to Morris. However, she completely misreads Baudelaire and this is coming from a native French speaker. Baudelaire is the most complex poet of the 19th century, he doesn't have a 'vision' for society. He was a syphylitic opium addict who would rather have seen the whole world vaporised than believe in some idiotic utopia.
Great writers and poets are usually miserable SOBs. Baudelaire was the greatest French poet of all time, yet I can't be sure that Dr. Silverman can even read French correctly. Anyone with even cursory knowledge of French literature would know that Baudeaire, like Balzac, was a cynical quasi monarchist.
All contemporary French novelists would agree with me, especially Houellebecq and even Celine.
Again, Dr. Silverman is not a bad teacher, she should just admit that her reading of Baudelaire is simply nonsense. Back off of French literature when you can't even appreciate the gorgeous nuances of the French language.
It is disingenuous to claim that Baudelaire was some sort of drooling post-modern idiot. He was pissy, reactionary and just plain angry.
Can I talk about the discursive deconstructionist ethics contained within the simulacrum of Baudelarian modernity?
Sure, that is a guaranteed A.
It means nothing, but it says a lot.
-Signed, a pissed off Frenchman.