by R.U. Sirius & Carmen Hermosillo
Wired, June 1994
Pol Pot was educated in Paris. Years later, back home in Cambodia, he ordered his Khmer Rouge to execute all people with glasses — part of his war against intellectualism. Was Pol Pot’s hostility displaced? Or was it a perverted irritation, shared by so many, with the convoluted thought processes and obfuscatory language peculiar to French intellectuals? The latter seems, at least, a good guess.
Don’t get me wrong. I have a soft spot for French writers. Back in my college days, I would argue with the fans of the Spanish-language surrealists like Federico Garcia Lorca and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Sure, the Latins were deeper, more subtle, better writers. But those original Dada guys, Breton and Tzara — blithely tossing firecrackers of dense language, contradictory words striking against one another in paroxysms of pleasurable non sense — now that’s what I call an afternoon’s fun.