Saturday, May 03, 2008

The Three Musketeers

That is, Umberto Eco, Mario Vargas Llosa and Salman Rushdie, happily riffing away on as Rushdie said, good bad books that (as Eco said) make great myths, until the moderator curtailed their amazing improvised banter.
Note to the organizers for next time: Writers of this caliber do not need a moderator. They can have an amazingly enlightening, jazzy discussion all by themselves without the need of someone who sounds like he has painstakingly done his homework. It is to the credit of these three guys that even when the moderator threatened to abscond with all the fun and sparks, they gave a very spirited talk and still kept it light, engaging and relevant.
It was about language (Europanto, anyone?), the political relevance of writers, the flexibility of English, the death of Latin and birth of romance languages, the bad/good novels of Alexandre Dumas, and the fledgling movie career of Salman Rushdie, among other things.
A delightful evening, but one that should not have been moderated at all.

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