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Musil and meta-Musil: The inevitable World War I

The West wasn’t pregnant in August 1914, only constipated. Rather than give birth to the future, it emptied its bowels of rancor. No disaster in world history was more predictable or longer in preparation. Robert Musil’s great novel The Man Without Qualities depicts Vienna’s elite in the months before the war, pursuing petty concerns unaware that their […]

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