Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Leading human rights activist shot in Burundi's capital

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Migrant Crisis: The Blame Game

Read more

THE DEBATE

Kerry Middle East Tour

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Greek shares plunge as trading resumes in Athens

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Gulf countries need proof and guarantees'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'The deadly French-English border'

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Experimental Ebola vaccine could stop virus in West Africa

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#CecilTheLion : Hunter Becomes The Hunted

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Erdogan’s gamble: Turkey launches offensives on PKK and Islamic State Group (part 2)

Read more

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.

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

2015-08-03 migrants

'Gulf countries need proof and guarantees'

INTERNATIONAL PRESS - Mon. 03.08.15: John Kerry's visit to Qatar does little to reassure the Gulf press on the Iran nuclear deal. The migrant crisis continues to dominate the...

Read more

2015-08-03 migrants

'The deadly French-English border'

FRENCH PAPERS - Mon. 03.08.15: Migrants top the agenda with a harrowing list of those killed this year attempting the crossing from Calais to the UK. Online petitions are the new...

Read more

2015-07-31 Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Indian execution like a 'Hollywood courtroom drama'

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Fri. 31.07.15: Newspaper websites begin to react to an attack that left a Palestinian baby dead in the West Bank. Yesterday's attack on a gay pride march in...

Read more

2015-07-31 Syria

A new player in Syria's war

FRENCH PAPERS - Fri. 31.07.15: A new group fighting both Assad and the Islamic State group in Syria is at the heart of an in-depth investigation by Libération. Also, François...

Read more

2015-07-30 Calais

'Close down Calais until the French get a grip'

INTERNATIONAL PRESS - Thurs. 30.07.15: Newspapers on both sides of the Channel react to a fresh migrant crisis in Calais - with startling headlines. Also, the Pakistani press...

Read more