Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

After Blatter: Can FIFA Clean Up Its Act? (part 1)

Read more

FACE-OFF

Sarkozy's 'The Republicans' party: Disunited they stand?

Read more

ENCORE!

Film Show: 'In the Shadow of Women' and 'San Andreas'

Read more

FOCUS

Greenpeace struggles after India freezes bank account

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Shiite militias on the frontline in Iraq

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

FIFA's Blatter steps down amid South Africa 2010 World Cup bribery claims

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

FIFA's sponsors welcome Blatter's resignation

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

'No wrongdoing' in 2022 World Cup bid, says Qatari FM

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Blatt's all folks!'

Read more

Live from the newsroom, we provide an overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

IN THE PAPERS

IN THE PAPERS

Latest update : 2010-02-09

“France’s greatest thinker fooled by Kant hoax”

The Times’ Paris correspondent Charles Bremner is in gleeful mood this morning recounting the woes of famous French philosopher Bernard-Herni Lévy. “BHL” as he is known is “the laughing stock of the Left Bank” having referenced a philosopher who does not exist in his latest book.

“Existential problem of the philosopher who did not exist,” says the Times headline and indeed Bernard-Henri Lévy might be going through an existential crisis after a massive gaffe in his new book “On War in Philosophy”. France’s most dashing philosopher took aim at Immanuel Kant calling him “raving mad” and a “fake” in his new book and to support his attack, he cited a little-known 20th century thinker Jean-Baptiste Botul.
 
The problem: Botul was invented by a journalist in 1999 as an elaborate joke. He even has a Wikipedia page which explains that he is a “fictional French philosopher.” Yet Lévy referred to Botul’s faked book “The Sex Life of Emmanuel Kant” saying the fictitious philosopher had proved once and for all “just after the Second World War in his series of lectures to the neo-Kantians of Paraguay that their hero was an abstract fake, a pure spirit of pure appearance.”
 
Aude Lancelin, a journalist at Le Nouvel Observateur, says that this was a “nuclear gaffe that raises questions about Lévy’s methods.”
 
She said she burst out laughing when she read the extracts from the book. Indeed, it is a particularly embarrassing episode for the prominent thinker who was a founding member of the “nouvelles philosophes” movement in the 1970s and is a regular guest on French television talk shows.
 
Other stories in today’s international papers:
 
Kommersant: Transitive start for Yanukovych
 
The Moscow Times: “Yanukovych wins, calls on rival to concede”
 
The Financial Times: “Oranges and lemons in Ukraine”
 
International Herald Tribune: French mosque vandalized
 
The Guardian: “Battle of the PM’s snacks”
 
Daily Sport: “Feeling fruity”
 

By James CREEDON

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2015-06-03 FIFA

'Blatt's all folks!'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Weds. 03.06.15: Sepp Blatter is once again in the spotlight. The man who has been at the helm of FIFA for the past 17 years announced yesterday he was...

Read more

2015-06-03 FIFA

Cornered, Blatter calls it quits

FRENCH PAPERS - Weds. 03.06.15: Sepp Blatter is once again in the spotlight. The man who has been at the helm of FIFA for the past 17 years announced yesterday he was calling it...

Read more

2015-06-02 Islamic State (IS) group

'Will snoop for food'

We look at coverage of the Paris meeting of anti-IS group coalition partners. The New York Times is asking: Can victory over ISIS ever be more than a mirage? On Syria, a former...

Read more

2015-06-02 French economy

'Is she trying to keep me from using my scooter?'

Leader writers in the right-wing press slam the Hollande government as unemployment hits 3.5 million. We look, too, at coverage of the Paris conference of coalition partners...

Read more

2015-06-01 Nicolas Sarkozy

Sarkozy: 'A new era'

Politics dominates with the UMP name buried following a conference by Nicolas Sarkozy's party on Saturday. The new-look Republicans party is, papers say, a vehicle for Sarkozy to...

Read more