French intellectual life has, in my opinion, been turned into something cheap and meretricious by the ‘star’ system. It is like Hollywood. Thus we go from one absurdity to another – Stalinism, existentialism. Lacan, Derrida – some of them obscene ( Stalinism), some simply infantile and ridiculous ( Lacan, Derrida). What is striking, however, is the pomposity and self-importance, at each stage.