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Giovanni Mantilla (Bogota, Colombia)

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Philosophy in a Time of Terror: Dialogues with Jurgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida
Philosophy in a Time of Terror: Dialogues with Jurgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida
by Giovanna Borradori
Edition: Hardcover
18 used & new from CDN$ 12.41

5.0 out of 5 stars A good overview of two great minds at work..., Jan. 17 2004
This book succeeds in two respects. First, both interviews are significant in that they address the subject matter in an analytically rigorous manner, enticing the reader to think-which is by no means a disposable end, in an era of CNN-inspired "analysis"-. The interview with Derrida is particularly enlightening, actually *forcing* you to think "otherwise", to quote another brilliant mind, Foucault. Second, Borradori accomplishes the difficult task of putting in place the reflexions of both philosophers in the context of their own philosophical work, tackling the most important issues relevant to their "way of problematizing", their views on reason, modernity, history, the international context, war & conflict, violence, etc.
This book, of course, does not suffice as a Habermas/Derrida "reader", but it certainly works as a practical exercise in trying to think about the present in ways and words that are not commonplace. Whether you actually agree with Habermas or Derrida is unimportant, what's important is that you have at least given the issue some thought.
I think this book is a small, yet thoroughly enjoyable and worthwile addition to anyone's collection, be it an intellectual or a regular person.

The History of Sexuality: An Introduction
The History of Sexuality: An Introduction
by Michel Foucault
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.80
68 used & new from CDN$ 1.18

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Foucault at work..., Jan. 10 2004
This book can be seen as a perfect example of a brilliant mind at work. Foucault surely considered this book as an introductory piece, a draft of brilliantly posed ideas and problems about sexuality as a dispositive, not in the traditional sense of the word that we have all become so acquainted with. This book works in many respects: Foucault succesfully makes his case for an open refusal of the "repressive hypothesis", explaining in a very precise manner why the discourse on sexuality in the XVIII and XIX centuries, far from being shy about it, positively promoted discussion... what he calls a "discoursive explosion". Foucault quite brilliantly introduces the two ways in which sexuality has come to be assumed by the human race: as an art (in ancient Greece) and as a science (in our present era). He also develops his own ideas (ideas that also appear in his courses at the Collège de France, particularly "Society Must Be Defended") about bio-power, disciplinary societies and biopolitical regimes. He successfully questions the fact that we have come to place sex under a veil of secrecy which must be undone... how sex has become the key to our personality, our "identity".
The last verses of the book are revealing: how is it that we still consider sex to be liberating when in reality we are always under its gaze, when it really has become a burden to be dealt with?
This book is astounding. Maybe not as brilliant as "Discipline and Punish" (which says a LOT about Foucault's creative nature)but certainly a key text toward understanding the problems Foucault tackled in final years of his life.
Note: the last two volumes of the History of Sexuality display a shift of focus and a leap back in "history"... you'll have to read the introduction to volume 2, "The Use Of Pleasure", to see what I mean. Still, it all makes sense if you dig deeper into the final developments of Foucault's work.

Discography : The Complete Singles Collection
Discography : The Complete Singles Collection
Offered by importcds__
Price: CDN$ 16.69
39 used & new from CDN$ 3.82

5.0 out of 5 stars Still impossible to match, Dec 31 2003
This album compiles all the hits the Pet Shop Boys had since their beggining until 1991. All of the tracks here are spotless pieces of pure pop magic: "West End Girls" is the first and, I'm happy to differ with most reviewers, decidedly not the pinnacle of the PSBs career. Tracks like "It's A Sin", "Suburbia", "Heart", "Being Boring", "Domino Dancing", "It's Alright" and "So Hard" truly portrait the utter brilliance and artistry that this group invested in its work. It's no wonder that they are still one of the most reveered pop acts of all times, truly up there with the likes of Abba and Depeche Mode. A new compilation has been released including all of their 1990s hits, but this one still remains unshadowed and an gem of pure 80s pop. You can do absolutely no wrong here... every track is delicious. Please do buy it... or else, get "PopArt" instead. That one has everything on here but "Was It Worth It?".

Remixed & Revisited
Remixed & Revisited
Price: CDN$ 14.34
44 used & new from CDN$ 1.38

4.0 out of 5 stars Ultimately winning..., Dec 20 2003
This review is from: Remixed & Revisited (Audio CD)
It's become trendy to diss "American Life", the album, as one of Madonna's worst. While there ARE a couple of duds on that album (I'm So Stupid, Nobody Knows Me and maybe even Hollywood), "American Life" is, in many respects, superior to its sucessful predecessor, "Music" (which was actually choppier in its production and didn't stand tall coming on the heels of "Ray Of light) and stands proudly among Madonna's other "good" (read: not excellent) productions. Maybe Madonna needs a club anthem for every single album she puts out to actually set the mood and have her album sell decently? Anyway, "American Life" is a good enough effort with more than a few sparks of brilliance. Among those are "Love Profusion" and "Nothing Fails". The former is a pop ditty with much to offer (decent lyrics, joyful vibe, good beats) whereas the latter is a wonderful ode to love with a climax to die for. That is, in their original form.
Here, remixed, both work in different ways. "Love Profusion" still sounds pop, while "Nothing Fails" is recreated more dramatically and sounds like an early pre-Madonna trying to rock out. It's an interesting experience. Granted, the songs are excellent as they are, but the remixes do offer something different to those who felt Madonna should have dropped the beats and bleeps and replaced them with guitars.
On the other hand, I never really liked "Nobody Knows Me" (see above). Preachy lyrics that sound more contrived that honest, "Nobody Knows Me" works better remixed than on the album, with the rockier sounds making it sound fuller than it did before. The problem I had was with the lyrics, which of course still appear, but at least sonically, it's decent.
The controversial "threesome" with Britney (gag) and Christina is also here... which is a nice addition, because, as someone else pointed out, Madonna's not one to release live tracks.
The remixed "Into The Groove" doesn't the top the original and kinda makes me cringe... because as much as I love M and Missy Elliot... I think that song is PERFECTION and didn't need to be tampered with. But, hell, I can't say it's bad.
Last but not least is, I think, the treat we're all in for with "Remixed & Revisited": "You Honesty", a toss-off from the Bedtime Stories-era. You couldn't tell that song was from any other time, as everything that was good (and to some, bad) about BS is there: fun lyrics, catchy melody, carefree attitude, happy vibe, zero spirituality (unlike on "Ray Of Light"). That's why I love it so much... it's actually much better than some of the stuff on the actual album, the infamous "Don't Stop", for instance.
This remix album of sorts is successful because it achieves its purpose by offering a varied set of things which will appeal to different listeners... and, of course, the hardcore Madonna fan like myself will approve.
Give this a try if you, like me, beg to differ with those who think it's cool to diss Madonna these days. This CD has plenty to offer.
4.5 stars!

Tales of a Librarian
Tales of a Librarian
Offered by USA_Seller_4_Canada
Price: CDN$ 27.81
23 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Delicious Compilation from Tori..., Dec 8 2003
This review is from: Tales of a Librarian (Audio CD)
This compilation CD is well-worth the purchase, even for the long-time rabid Tori fan. Most songs have been slighty modified for the better ("spark" stands out in this respect) and the new songs are classic Tori. This CD is also a good reminder of why we fell in love with Tori in the first place... it's nice and odd to hear the songs from "Little Earthquakes" and still get chills sent up your spine.
Missing, of course, is the stuff from "Scarlet's Walk"... and "Caught A Lite Sneeze" should have been on here. But still, even with those minor quibbles, this CD cannot be skipped!
The DVD could have been more generous but its inclusion is wonderful enough to make you forget about anything else. The performances are magical, of course... Tori never loses it. And the new versions of Zebra and Putting The Damage On must sound great (I can't tell myself as I don't have a 5.1 audio output!).
Get this. You'll enjoy it

Lisa Stansfield: Biography - The Greatest Hits [Import]
Lisa Stansfield: Biography - The Greatest Hits [Import]
DVD ~ Lisa Stansfield
Offered by Warehouse105
Price: CDN$ 19.99
10 used & new from CDN$ 19.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Lisa in all her glory... fabulous DVD!, Dec 6 2003
Lisa has done it again. This DVD is about as comprehensive as it gets, there's only one video I know is missing, "The Line", which wasn't very good in the first place. Anyway, this DVD serves as testament that Lisa has a trademark way of doing videos and that it works time after time. The best videos are the most recent, for songs like "The Real Thing" (what a magical video and song BTW) and "Never Never Gonna Give You Up". My personal favorite, and that's just because I'm rediscovering the song, is "Set Your Loving Free". Wow! Anyway, the interview segments work as a good introduction to each video.. the bonus videos are also priceless. All in all, this compilation tops most DVDs out there... and is a must have for Lisa fans! Your collection simply isn't complete without this. Amazing. 5 Stars.

If I Could Turn Back Time: Cher's Greatest Hits
If I Could Turn Back Time: Cher's Greatest Hits
Price: CDN$ 16.68
26 used & new from CDN$ 1.49

5.0 out of 5 stars Still the best Cher compilation around..., Nov. 26 2003
Don't get me wrong. Of course I'm aware that the delicious tracks from "Believe" and "Living Proof" are not on this CD, and the same goes for "Walking in Memphis" or "One by One". However, this is the only compilation that really pleased me, at least until now that the new Very Best Of Cher CD has come out.
All of the tracks on this CD are bombastic, fun, and amazing in a big way. There's not a song on this CD that I feel could have been left out. That's why I love it and think it's the best. The "Cher + bubbles" international Greatest Hits is not as good a representation of Cher's work as this is. I would suggest you get this if you already have "Believe" and "Living Proof" and can live without "One By One" and "Walking in Memphis".
Another good choice would be to get the INTERNATIONAL 2CD version of the new Cher "Very Best Of" album. The US version is only one CD whereas the international one includes another CD filled with the hits that are missing... that IS the DEFINITIVE and most up-to-date Cher compilation that has appeared.
Unfortunately that version is not yet available for purchase in Amazon...
Note that the 2CD version I'm mentioning is NOT to be confused with the so-called "Special Edition" that includes a second, live CD. No... the international version I've seen is a 2-CD compilation including over 40 studio hits by the one and only Cher. Get that one if you can... if not... get this one!

Little Earthquakes
Little Earthquakes
Price: CDN$ 15.15
135 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars the work of a god(dess), July 10 2003
This review is from: Little Earthquakes (Audio CD)
There is truth in what others have said. Nothing could come close to ever describing this accurately. This is an untouchable stone, the best in Tori's catalog and will, quite possibly, prove to be her most reveered effort in years to come.
This is Tori's most autobiographical album, tackling topics from sexuality to religion, ranging from unusual love songs to heartbreaking ballads and joyful tunes that will cheer you and move you like few others. "Crucify" is a song about liberation, the way that others (in this case, your family) affect you in a negative manner and the way that you choose to act upon yourself as an act of liberation (from them). "Girl" works in the same vein, although this time Tori uses the third person singular and talks about going to work and not being able to break a power relation that's holding you down. "Silent All These Years" also exposes a power relation, this time in a romantic contex, which is sometimes raw, often sweet, and quite enchanting. "Precious Things" is about painfully ridding yourself from your past ghosts, at least that's how it reads to me. "Winter" presents a difficult father/daughter relationship, talking about the fear of change and about growing old and apart. "Happy Phantom" is a happy, care-free song about coming back from death and having a blast. "China" is a heartbreaking, wisely-constructed ballad, one of Tori's most heartbreaking songs. "Leather" is a clever song about sex and deceit. "Mother" is a sad song where daugher & mother get to have their say, it resembles "Winter", but it's slightly more "up". "Tear In Your Hand" is a beautiful song. Makes me cry. Talks about the "pieces of me you've never seen". Maybe she's the pieces of me you've never seen.
"Me & A Gun" talks about an evenement in Tori's life, her rape. It's liberating song, which aims to reverse a negative power relation. "Little Earthquakes" sums up the rest of the tracks.
Tori said at the time this album was released that it was about finding her "true voice". I say this album is about what has led her to having a voice, which maybe her own but was shaped by many others. And yes, it's as beautiful as it gets!!
I didn't do "Little Earthquakes" justice. I can't believe this album is as good as it is. Listen to it!

Sarah McLachlan: Video Collection 1989-1998 [Import]
Sarah McLachlan: Video Collection 1989-1998 [Import]
DVD ~ Sarah Mclachlan
Offered by 5A/30 Entertainment
Price: CDN$ 66.60
11 used & new from CDN$ 8.04

4.0 out of 5 stars Good to have, July 7 2003
Sarah Mclachlan is not a great video artist. As a matter of fact, this DVD proves that she didn't actually find her own style (a good one too, I must add) until 1997's Surfacing. Her earlier videos are all low-budget affairs, ranging from the boring (Path Of Thorns) to the cheesy (Steaming) & amateurish (Vox); all seem repetitive and uninventive. Admittedly, most of the music couldn't be better. To be fair, the songs are excellent throughout, especially the singles released from "Solace" and on, but the imagery, the style (the whole modern ballet style gets old after the first minute of "Path Of Thorns", which is still a beautiful song, BTW) of the video work leaves a lot to be desired. That said, "Building A Mystery" and "Sweet Surrender" showcase a much mature-looking Sarah, who looks her age while still singing top-notch material ("Adia" is not my favorite song but the video is OK). This collection is not particularly outstanding, but it is certainly a good thing to have on DVD.
Here's the breakdown.
The good: Drawn To The Rhythm, Hold On, Building A Mystery & Sweet Surrender.
The not-so-good: Vox (out of the two versions, the better is the US one), Path Of Thorns, Into The Fire, Possession (Canadian Version).
The rest are all OK.
A good one for hardcore fans to get, otherwise, skip this!

Bjork - Greatest Hits
Bjork - Greatest Hits
DVD ~ Björk
Offered by 5A/30 Entertainment
Price: CDN$ 68.08
11 used & new from CDN$ 11.72

5.0 out of 5 stars Wow, July 5 2003
This review is from: Bjork - Greatest Hits (DVD)
Every expectation I had of this DVD was met. It's quite a wonderful event to see all of Bjork's amazing videos for the first time on a DVD, the older version of "Volumen" didn't seem like enough for me, and I guess the wait was worth it. Every video here is a work of art... Bjork's music is brought to the screen by some masters of visual arts... Michel Gondry's videos are the most impressive of the bunch, of course, but honorable mentions go to Stephane Sednaoui (Possibly Maybe), Chris Cunningham (All Is Full Of Love) and the guys that directed her newer (Vespertine era) videos. The new songs (It's In Our Hands & Nature Is Ancient) are gorgeous as well, and their respective videos are excellent too, even if Bjork is absent from the latter. All in all, a remarkable body of work from someone who can truly call herself a video artist... she brings her craft to unexpected heights in filmed format! Viva la Bjork!

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