Schliesser’s latest response in an ongoing discussion:
‘A philosopher walks into a bar and tells a novelist...
“I’m your dentures and your cane, please treat me well. You need me more than anything else in the world.”’
Well, everything ends in a joke.
Perhaps Schliesser is telling me that the melancholy of powerlessness is never far away from the melancholy of collaboration.
And yes, there is something suspicious about the novelist who is in love with his own weakness and powerlessness.
But I remain doubtful whether the novelist can be today’s magician and mediator.
It’s unlikely but let’s imagine for the sake of argument that there are still readers who look to literature for wisdom and redemption in the secular sense of the word.
In my world the novelist would say: “I don’t do redemption. That’s my colleague behind the curtain. She isn’t cheap but she is a lovely lady.”
And Schliesser answers: “There is nobody behind the curtain. You are alone in your shop.”