A Riot in Bordeaux

Our dubious doctor reflects on the mass protests and rioting in France over the raising of the retirement age by presidential diktat in this week’s Takimag article.

Civilization is a veneer, it is often said, as is the facing of a building. But the facing of a building is what can make the difference between a beautiful and a hideous construction. The cult of authenticity, or truth to materials and underlying structure, that has been assiduously promoted by driveling modern architectural theorists has led to the visual nightmare that is most modern cities. Destruction is always authentic, because it appeals to a kind of joy that is waiting patiently to emerge from every human breast, or at least from many of them.

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