In September 1940, Walter Benjamin devoted suicide in Port Bou at the Spanish-French border while it seemed that he and his traveling companions will be denied passage into Spain of their try and break out the Nazis. In 2002, one in all anthropology’s—and certainly today’s—most distinct writers, Michael Taussig, visited Benjamin’s grave in Port Bou. the result's “Walter Benjamin’s Grave,” a relocating essay concerning the cemetery, eyewitness money owed of Benjamin’s border travails, and the conditions of his death. it's the most up-to-date of 8 revelatory essays amassed during this quantity of an identical name.
“Looking over those essays written during the last decade,” writes Taussig, “I imagine what they proportion is a love of muted and faulty storytelling as a sort of study. unusual love certainly; love of the wound, love of the final gasp.” even though thematically those essays run the gamut—covering the monument and graveyard at Port Bou, discussions of peasant poetry in Colombia, a pact with the satan, the peculiarities of a shaman’s physique, transgression, the disappearance of the ocean, big apple urban police officers, and the connection among flora and violence—each stocks Taussig’s hugely person model of storytelling, person who relies on a deep appreciation of items and issues to be able to retrieve even deeper philosophical and anthropological meanings. no matter if he unearths himself in Australia, Colombia, big apple, or Spain, in the course of a booklet or a seashore, no matter if speaking to acquaintances or watching a monument, Taussig makes transparent via those outstanding essays that materialist wisdom deals an important substitute to the more and more summary, globalized, homogenized, and digitized international we inhabit.
Pursuing an experience that's half ethnography, half autobiography, and half cultural feedback refracted in the course of the item that's Walter Benjamin’s grave, Taussig, with this assortment, presents his personal literary memorial to the 20th century’s maximum cultural critic.