Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

Ten days to save Merkel? German leader under pressure over border policy

Read more

FOCUS

Alarmingly high rates of HIV among China's youth

Read more

ENCORE!

Samira Wiley, Darren Criss & Neal McDonough at Monte-Carlo Television Festival

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

Violence against trangender women in Indonesia, and more

Read more

IN THE PRESS

'The frozen heart of America': Condemnation as migrant families torn apart in US

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

'There are two policies towards Russia in the Trump administration'

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

Grandmas Project: 'Their history was passed down through food'

Read more

ACROSS AFRICA

Mali's basketball star: NBA top player Cheick Diallo makes hometown proud

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Trump threatens huge new tariffs on China

Read more

IN THE PRESS

An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

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

2018-06-19 Dheepthika LAURENT

'The frozen heart of America': Condemnation as migrant families torn apart in US

IN THE PAPERS - Tuesday, June 19: There's outrage from both sides of the political spectrum over Donald Trump's migration policy that's seen children separated from their...

Read more

2018-06-18 Dheepthika LAURENT

Celebrations after Mexico's win against Germany prompts 'fan-made' earthquake

IN THE PAPERS - Monday, June 18: We look at reactions in Colombia after the country elects conservative Ivan Duque as its new president. In the US, criticism grows from...

Read more

2018-06-15 Alison SARGENT

'As Saudis go to war, the crown prince attends a soccer match'

Friday, June 15, 2018: As Saudi paper Arab News celebrates military gains in Yemen, others condemn Saudi Arabia for creating a humanitarian disaster. The New York Times reminds...

Read more

2018-06-14 Dheepthika LAURENT

World Cup: Why footballers' haircuts show France has real chance of winning

IN THE PAPERS - Thursday, June 14: As the World Cup kicks off, we look at what the Russian papers are saying and the sports pages around the world. France and Italy's diplomatic...

Read more

2018-06-13 Dheepthika LAURENT

Social climber: Minnesota raccoon climbs skyscraper, becomes national hero

IN THE PAPERS - Wednesday, June 13: A war of words escalates between France and Italy after Rome refuses to take in a migrant rescue boat carrying over 600 people. In the UK,...

Read more