The Nature of "Movements"

Daniel Kuehn recently asked about the "libertarian movement."

Here is a way to understand "movements":
"Shit" for [Milan] Kundera represents both literally and symbolically our categorical disagreement with being. Its denial produces kitsch, a sappy and sentimental view of the world that is responsible for tacky art, like garden gnomes or paintings of cute furry kittens.

Kitsch is present in politics, too. Kundera saw in the leftist politics of his homeland the same mawkishness, a parallel propensity to assume the "Grand March" toward socialist equality and freedom was just a rally away. The Grand March for Kundera is a fantasy premised on the denial of the real. It is the political equivalent of a porcelain kewpie doll, and like all expressions of kitsch, in denying shit – in this case, by denying that certain forces might forever prevent the realization of the socialist ideal – kitsch veers toward totalitarianism.


  1. Are the two references to "sh*t" due to Siri or you? Because there's bowel movements.

    1. Neither: they are due to Milan Kundera.

  2. Oh, I didn't read it carefully. I thought Siri was occasionally mishearing you say "kitsch."

  3. Wasn't Baudrillard a post-modernist?


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