Roland Barthes - The Philosopher as Outsider

Mid- December had arrived in South Kensington, and winter was descending upon buildings and streets, as if it could swallow up everything in its chilled maw. We were gathered in the Salons of the French Institute for a lecture and discussion on Roland Barthes, that confrontational French thinker who dared to undermine all our seemingly comfortable embedded assumptions. Someone on an adjacent chair spoke to me in French at the start, but I could not understand what she was say