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Embodiments of the British penchant for role-playing, Fleming's James Bond novels also enshrine the self-flattering national conviction that Britain is an incomparable force for good.
And so I find myself enmeshed in the contradictions and complicities, ambitions and ambivalence that institutional critique is often accused of, caught between the self-flattering possibility that I was the first person to put the term in print, and the critically shameful prospect of having played a role in the reduction of certain radical practices to a pithy catchphrase, packaged for co-optation.
Liberals offer self-flattering explanations for the imbalance: The academic atmosphere of open-minded inquiry fosters and accommodates liberal ideas.
Overall, while Jordan-Bychkov and Bychkova Jordan mention the problematic nature of European ethnocentrism and prejudice, they could do more to debunk the self-flattering Eurocentric construct of Europe being the cradle of civilization and progress.
If you look, for instance, at the reviews of David Brock's book Blinded by the Right--wherein Brock laments the moral and intellectual decline from Norman Podhoretz to homo-hating son John--even die-hard liberals take the old guys on their own self-flattering terms, as if the neocon parents were men and women of profound idealism while the "minicon" children can muster only attitude.
The tableau furnished by this life-transforming "epiphany" is discomfittingly close to that experienced by a raw Party recruit before the towering authority of a Great Leader; we should remember, in the face of such self-flattering cant, that the final horror of Nineteen Eighty-Four was that Winston Smith loved Big Brother.
And "This was where my narcissism lay, I suppose, in my desire to insert myself in self-flattering discourse which required that England be guilty and decadent, instead of playing my part as well and as silently as Pocahontas.
Scott Fitzgerald, John O'Hara, Djuna Barnes, and Charles Jackson, his seven chapters take us from the lumpen-middle-class fatuousness of 19th-century American theories and attitudes concerning alcohol to the self-flattering evasions of these early 20th-century writers.
He enters the literary and historical interiors of both real and fictional houses, from the architectural and theoretical origins of Roman villas, through the concurrent rise of self-flattering house and flattering text in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, to the decline of the house qua house and the rise of the self-indulgent text--the imaginative in memorium of a paradise lost.
She scolded rude sales clerks, and created her signature style: teasing, with self-flattering references, color and gossip.
The address on Basil, too long and with too much self-flattering reference for an actual commemorative sermon, bears probably some loose relationship to what Gregory may have uttered at Caesarea perhaps on 1 January 382.
All of the above, plus her own ambition and determination to rise to the top, are described in this somewhat pretentious memoir, which offers up a number of amusing anecdotes and stories but is marred by an overabundance of self-flattering tributes, letters, and comments.