2 of 3
2
Why is a brief brief? Kafka quote sought
Posted: 18 September 2008 06:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  291
Joined  2007-02-17

Is there a reason why you’re being so coy about the identity, or supposed identity, of this philosopher? This sounds interesting.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 18 September 2008 10:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  429
Joined  2007-02-14

This sounds interesting.

Kafka-esque, I’d say.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 19 September 2008 06:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3411
Joined  2007-01-29

Yes, what is the name of this alleged philosopher?

Profile
 
 
Posted: 19 September 2008 06:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
Administrator
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4597
Joined  2007-01-03

Reminds me of de Selby in Flann O’Brien’s The Third Policeman.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 25 September 2008 10:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  291
Joined  2007-02-17

It’s hard to be coy about anything on the internet. The alleged philosopher is ‘Eli Khamarov’.

It does rather look like a hoax, but it’s rather odd. Whoever devised it must have put an awful lot of effort into coming up with all those appallingly banal quotes, but the only picture available is one that doesn’t really look like it’s of someone allegedly born in 1948. And why choose the name ‘Khamarov’, which doesn’t seem to exist apart from the name to judge from a brief look at the Google evidence, unless you count one reference to a ‘Nikita Khamarov’ on somebody’s geocities page, which I can’t open but looks like another banal, invented quotation.

I keep trying to pronounce the name in a way that would reveal an appalling pun, or to make an anagram out of it, but I’m not having much luck.

Edit: Curiouser and curiouser. Apart from Myridon’s other board, I can’t find anybody doubting his authenticity, just references to this ‘Juvenal of our time’ and a few of his choicest phrases. They could best be described as Vogon aphorisms. But they do seem to have taken in those budding legal geniuses at Harvard Law School: at http://www.law.harvard.edu/students/orgs/action/ a student organisation called Direct Action Against Poverty takes as its motto his trenchant observation that: ‘Poverty is like punishment for a crime you didn’t commit.’ Bless.

I’d love to know how it was done.

[ Edited: 25 September 2008 11:13 PM by kurwamac ]
Profile
 
 
Posted: 25 September 2008 11:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  590
Joined  2007-02-22

Couldn’t “Eli Khamorov” be a nom de plume?  Has anyone who can be bothered tried e-mailing him?

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 12:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2297
Joined  2007-01-30

I have a strong feeling this film is the source of the whole hoax. No traces on Amazon of either of his supposedly popular and influential works, Lives of the Cognoscenti and Surviving on Planet Reebok, which is a powerful indication that there are no such books.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 05:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3411
Joined  2007-01-29

Khamarov (Хамаров) is a real, if rare, Russian name, but “Eli Khamarov” is clearly (in my opinion) a hoax.  Interesting that nobody seems to have pointed this out before, though, at least on the internet.

Edit: I’m curious as to why Myridon was so coy about the name.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 06:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
Administrator
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4597
Joined  2007-01-03

And why choose the name ‘Khamarov’, which doesn’t seem to exist apart from the name

Perhaps it was chosen precisely because it was unique. Makes tracking on Google easier and the inventor can easily see how successful the hoax has been.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 07:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  311
Joined  2007-02-17

1) I wanted to give an example without sidetracking the thread.  That plan failed - in two different ways now.
2) Frankly, I have a fear on this board of making a statement about anything that can be researched.  If I had said it, someone would turn up saying “I have lunch with Eli every Friday.  How dare you accuse him of being a fraud!” How much trouble could I have saved myself in the other thread if I had said regardless instead of “come hell or high water”?

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 10:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2776
Joined  2007-01-31

From the transcript of that film:

Eli Khamarov has injected his thoughts on society mainly through his books “Lives of the Cognoscenti” and “Surviving on Planet Reebok” and occasional articles in leading contemporary journals.

And yet, no publications by him are listed in major bibiliographic databases such as ISI Web of Knowledge, Lexis-Nexis, or Academic Search Premier (EBSCOhost).  And as has been noted, these books do not appear to exist either.

I agree with Aldi that that student film is the likely source of the whole thing.  Call it a hoax, a mockumentary, a conceptual art project, or what you will, they seem to have invented Khamarov out of whole cloth, and the predilection of people to believe and repeat what they see on the web without any fact-checking has done the rest.

There’s even a sly hint of Khamarov’s non-existence hidden in the film:

Narration:

In his own words, Eli Khamarov has spent his life observing it rather than living it.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 11:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2776
Joined  2007-01-31

Oh, and the original topic reminds of of this thread: Faux Shakespeare Quote

Profile
 
 
Posted: 26 September 2008 09:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  291
Joined  2007-02-17

There are loads of them out there. There was the Caesar one about banging the drums of war a few years ago. More recently there was one that frustratingly I can’t remember, but right-wingers were saying it a lot. More depressingly, when I pointed out to one who was, I thought, not an idiot that none of the alleged sources of the quotation ever gave any indication as to where in the works of the alleged author the quote could be found, he pointed me to an internet collection of quotations, obviously thinking that it was sufficient evidence.

The internet isn’t completely to blame - I was rather disconcerted fairly recently to find out that there’s no evidence that Edmund Burke ever said anything about evil triumphing when good men do nothing, and I’ve heard that one all my life - but it does facilitate the spread of this sort of thing. And what’s worse is that if it does get picked up by various sites, people see that as evidence, at least until Snopes or someone exposes it, and sometimes even then.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 27 September 2008 12:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2297
Joined  2007-01-30
kurwamac - 26 September 2008 09:40 PM

I was rather disconcerted fairly recently to find out that there’s no evidence that Edmund Burke ever said anything about evil triumphing when good men do nothing, and I’ve heard that one all my life

Well, I’ll be! I’ve never questioned that attribution either. There’s an interesting piece on it here.) (Related link here).

The much-quoted triumph-of-evil statement appeared in the 14th edition of Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations (1968), with a letter Burke wrote William Smith on January 9, 1795, given as the source. But the letter to Smith was dated January 29, 1795, and it said nothing about the triumph of evil. When New York Times columnist William Safire asked Emily Morrison Beck, editor of the 15th edition of Bartlett’s, about the source, she acknowledged she hadn’t located the statement in Burke’s writings ‘so far’, but suggested it might be a paraphrase of something Burke said in a speech he gave in Parliament, ‘Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents’, on April 23, 1770: ‘When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall, one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.’ Safire thought her suggestion was a ‘pretty long stretch,’ but she included it in her introduction to the new edition of Bartlett’s.

And oh the irony in that instruction from the ‘model essay’ in the second link.

The Henrik Hudson School District Library Media Centre provides a model essay for students which ends with the words,

Perpetrators, collaborators, bystanders, victims: we can be clear about three of these categories. The bystander, however, is the fulcrum. If there are enough notable exceptions, then protest reaches a critical mass. We don’t usually think of history as being shaped by silence, but, as English philosopher Edmund Burke said, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing.’ (this is a commonly known quote and does not need to be cited)

[ Edited: 27 September 2008 01:06 AM by aldiboronti ]
Profile
 
 
Posted: 27 September 2008 06:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]
RankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3411
Joined  2007-01-29

Ha!  That last bit is priceless.

Profile
 
 
   
2 of 3
2
 
‹‹ Team GB      Stepfather ››