work in progress in social theory and cultural sociology


01.28.2013 · Posted in Uncategorized

Timbuktu has often been invoked as a symbol of the most distant place on Earth, as a mysterious and exotic, but unreachable, attraction. Yet, it is a real city with a history.”



only three hours after putting this up news is in that the Ahmad Baba library has been burned down


The horror of book burnings does not come from an immediate injury done by the violation of a material object, but through the display of intent that it conveys: the annihilation of plurality, dissent, imagination – and in the last consequence of those who dissent, who imagine. As the Romantic poet Heinrich Heine commented in his play Toleranzstück – indirectly referring to the burning of books by German nationalist students 1817 on the Wartburg:

“This was only an prelude. Where one burns books / In the end one well burn men as well.”


update 4th February 2013

most of the manuscript seemed to have been saved

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