Was he a madman, then? Or a hoaxer who poked fun at his readers? Or a humorist appealing to a crafty reader? Or was it all a smokescreen to help him smuggle in the real content, the radical critique of society? Maybe none of these definitions is exact.

– Italo Calvino, “On Fourier, II: The Controller of Desires,” The Uses of Literature: Essays (1980)

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