Gaelan D'costa's Reviews > Lipstick Traces: A Secret History of the Twentieth Century

Lipstick Traces by Greil Marcus
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Feb 01, 09

bookshelves: philosophy, music, culture, post-modern
Read in June, 2008

What a bastard! Greil Marcus sucked me in with 70s punk trivia and turned out to be an introductory text on Dadaism, Situationist International and the May '68 riots that shaped contemporary France.

But, if this book as anything to say, it shaped punk too. By bookending philosophy with punk histories it convinced me that listening to protest music was not enough; it uncovered a philosophy that demonstrates the true danger and disruptive joy that should have informed the instruments and ears of everyone under the punk tag. Assuming, of course, that all punks were academic at heart.

The book is definitely rewarding but, given its spirit, tends to gleefully confound the reader just as its focus organization once did.

The question is: being not a punk but mere punk listener 20 years too late, how do I take my new understanding of SI, '68 and continue their good work in business casual and the grocery?
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