Full text: The little review (9 (1923), 4)

29 
WHICH WAY? 
T WENTY years ago visitors came to Paris for Sarah 
Bernhardt, the Sole Marguery and the Eiffel Tower. 
Sarah Bernhardt, dead and buried and her clothes sold 
at auction; Marguery is only a vulgar eating house 
keeper but the Eiffel Tower has not lost a bit of its 
prestige. The painter, Delaunay, finds it so fascinating that he 
puts it in all of his pictures; the morning paper announces that 
a cyclist has descended its stairway; spring before last Jean 
Cocteau staged a ballet, a wedding party, whose scene was laid 
on the first platform; recently we saw again the bride, the 
groomsmen, the maids of honour, the general, who, thanks to a 
mirage, after showing us the cyclist of Chatou and the bather 
of Trouville, was devoured by a lion. Remarks: this honest 
general . . . this brave general ... a child with too big a 
head because he wishes to live his life; the wedding party is 
photographed and the group is admired by the old picture 
dealer. Everyone laughs and the Eiffel Tower is the tower of 
Paris as the leaning tower is the tower of Pisa. 
But for one comedy ballet which keeps all its gayety how 
many works are there in the new manner of 1921 which are 
already demode? 
The puns on the subsidized theatres and the Academy are no 
better than the theatres and the Academy; one laughs at tradi 
tions, but too often the revolutionary spirit only contradicts 
itself and seeks different traditions, but traditions all the same; 
so many a person has manufactured a bomb to destroy detestable 
monuments and then has been content simply to place his bomb 
on the mantlepiece, make a thousand copies of it which he puts 
on sale like the Venus of Milo in cheap plaster. 
In fact men too easily justify themselves in thinking that they 
are no longer victims of the political mania and of the deplor 
able party spirit if they have replaced one system by another. 
One should denounce the danger of this opportunism, by which 
some so-called poets speak of modernism, like merchants of 
those creations which make their clients look like twins.
	        

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