Two Biographies : #Manet

What’s better than a good dive into knowledge, into the life of an important artist, or character? I did it with Brahms, with Faulkner, with Chekhov, with Lincoln, Churchill…

It’s like a travel, an inner one, into history, into a life.

And of course, your choice reveals something about yourself. Why this person?

This winter, I travel with Edouard Manet, a French painter.

I use a few tricks I know.

First : two biographies.

Eric Darragon is a French Art Historian, and James Henry Rubin an American Art Teacher in the State University of New York. I am currently reading these two books at the same time…

Manet “by Zola” is a text from a writer who knew him, and L’Œuvre a novel about this period and this area (artists in Paris in XIXth Century).

I should add the souvenirs of Antonin Proust, Manet’s best friend, and probably the Manet lectures of Bourdieu, a sociologist, in the Collège de France.

I won’t and I can’t tell you why Manet. I’ll only say one aspect : he is on the fence. He’s the first modern. He’s an impressionist, but he’s not. A rebel, but not at all. And so on. It’s so amazing that I explore it very slowly.

Two good biographies is a good knack. You can do it with a battle (the D-Day?), with an event (a revolution?), with a a theme.

Choose one specialist. Then another one from the other side. Then a book from inside.

 

Thanks for reading!

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Freedom & Hungriness : exploring a domain “in a roundabout way”

Imagine you want to explore the life of Abraham Lincoln, or the D-Day. You can do that the proper way, reading a biography or watching a good documentary. But I like to find other path, in a roundabout way, finding another door, another color, being a little casual and inappropriate.

Take the Lincoln example. You can :

  • Read about someone’s around : his wife, a general, his murderer.
  • Read about what happened after him, or the American life before him.
  • Find pictures on the web about him, his life, his handwritten letters.
  • Read a diary of somebody who knew him.
  • Find everything about his opponents.
  • Explore one month only of his life and the country’s life too.
  • Find a Lincoln forum on the web and spend months exploring, reading questions and answers of specialists.

Tool :

Casualness in knowledge exploration is a possible way.

Thanks for reading!

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