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This report is taken from PN Review 195, Volume 37 Number 1, September - October 2010.

A Flying Visit to the Writing Fellow Frank Kuppner

No, listen. An absolutely huge amount of human behaviour, when it comes right down to it, is clearly, more than anything else, about manufacturing evidence for one’s own utter personal centrality. You know? Evidence that one is as thoroughly central to everything – just as important, really as significant – as one feels oneself to be. As one’s life, etcetera, tells one one truly is, if we’re going to be honest about it. Though we so rarely are, of course. Which, needless to say, as a matter of fact, existentially speaking, one isn’t. I mean to say, one isn’t really that central – all those vast and incessant intuitions to the contrary notwithstanding. No one is – not even our children. I dare say males are slightly worse in all this. Are we two, for instance, central to each other? But it’s not as if it’s a failure of personality! If the galaxies could think – and I assume they can’t – then the same would be true of galaxies. Indeed, not to keep you in the dark, I very much hope they don’t.

You know what I’m saying? An urgent necessity to feed this universal, voracious and unending impulse: one’s widespread ab initio feeling that the vast amount of it – practically everything, in fact – really is about me; me, the unquestioned (or it ought to be unquestioned) numero uno. Everything from scoring petty points off people who might cross us at work – all ...


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