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A Dictionary of Idiocy

A light-hearted guide for the perplexed to all things absurd and idiotic. What is stupidity? Not as easy as it may seem, argues Stephen Bayley in his provocative study of the subject, Dictionary of Idiocy. Britain's grasp of stupidity lags far behind that of other nations such as Spain, Germany, Holland, and, particularly, France. There have been incidental attempts - such as a recent book on stupid white men and a popular programme on self-mutilation, a Swedish film by Dogma 95 - but not nearly enough for a sustained effort for Anglo-Americans to regain the lead once held under Alexander Pope. Returning to the original meaning of an idiot as a private man with opinions, Stephen Bayley draws a firm line between opinions and the stupid mass-produced views one can pick up anywhere. It was Nietsche who said that if people never did silly things, nothing intelligent would ever happen. Investigating further, Stephen Bayley finds the reason for illegal substances in Beatrix Potter's Peter Rabbit, unveils the mysteries of Italian cuisine, what Foucault and Barthes have in common, what Princess Diana meant when using the word 'tidy', and why everyone hates accountants with a vengeance. Ine
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Table of Contents

A Dictionary of Idiocy; - Opinionmakers.

About the Author

Stephen Bayley regularly appears on television as a commentator on the arts and is a contributing editor for Esquire. He currently has a column in the Independent on Sunday and the Saturday Telegraph.


'I am fascinated' Andrew Marr, Start the Week, Radio 4 'Wonderful' The Times 'Intelligent' Independent

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