Café Mouffe: Miss Tic & The Ethics of Love

One consequence of succumbing to the flu and avoiding the office this week has been letting my febrile mind go wherever it wanted. I’ve wandered from Wall Street to the House of Dior, and unexpectedly, I returned like a prodigal son to the poetry of my misspent youth. What was it Delacroix said? “To be a poet and twenty is to be twenty. To be a poet and forty is to be a poet.” Delacroix didn’t take the trope beyond fifty, so he’s no help in guessing my next state of being. I’ll turn to Miss Tic instead.

Another strange consolation has been time to re-read Alistair Horne’s history of the Algerian revolution, A Savage War of Peace. That’s what I thought I’d blog about this week, not movie stars and princesses. Horne provides a radically refracted lens for viewing Paris in the 1950s and early 60s. Some of the dashing French paratroopers who made savage war in Algeria must have felt the contradiction when they returned to make love in Paris.

All this comes together for me in the art of Miss Tic — sex, politics, poetry, Paris, the life of the street. I am mesmerized by the Ethics of Love montage presented here. Miss Tic’s visual imagery is provocative but deceiving, a tease before her deft linguistic counter-punch. As she proclaimed on Rue Mouffetard, “La poésie est un sport de l’extrême.” Each of the images stenciled on these Paris walls is a poem. Her words fly by faster than I can absorb. The effect here is like speed-reading a page of Finnegans Wake when you know you need a lifetime to unpack the puns.

The soundtrack is a song by Rodolphe Burger and Erik Marchand. It comes from an album called “Before Bach” — I haven’t found it yet on the web, does anyone know anything about it? To Lunethique, who produced the montage, I say Bravo!

Café Mouffe opens every Friday at 3:00 p.m. Please drop by for a listen and a chat. Sometimes the embedded videos don’t work here due to bandwidth constraints, but you’ll always find links to video sources in the set notes. Try them. If you’re curious about the Mouffe, here’s the original idea behind it’s creation.

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