Sacre Bleu!

Bernard Henri-Lévy Falls for Hoax

What’s French for “Google”? The celebrity French philosopher Bernard Henri-Lévy—he of the unbuttoned white shirts and coiffed hair—has backed up the arguments in his latest book, On War in Philosophy, by citing the work of a fake philosopher. In arguing that Imanuel Kant was a madman, Henri-Lévy quoted from the lectures of Jean-Baptiste Botul—the creation of the journalist Frédéric Pagès. Botul has a rabid following—which recognizes that he’s not real—and debates his metaphysics of flab and his ideas on cheese, sausages, women’s breasts, and the transport of valises in the 1930s. Botul’s Wikipedia entry makes clear that he does not exist. Said Henri-Lévy, “My source of information is books, not Wikipedia.”