01/13/2011 02:12 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Bernard-Henri Levy With Stephen Colbert: Congratulations For Looking Like A Public Intellectual! (VIDEO)

"You are something of a rarity in America," Stephen Colbert told his guest on "The Colbert Report" last night Bernard-Henri Levy. "You are a public intellectual!"

Colbert continued to describe his guest, the author of over a dozen books. "You are perhaps the most famous, most popular, philosopher in France. Do you win that in a reality show over there? 'So, You Think You Can Philosophize'? Why is public intellectualism popular in France? Because we don't like it -- We think of public intellectualizing as the same as public urination ..."

"You are a sort of public intellectual," Levy exclaimed.

"You shut up!" Colbert warned.

But Levy continued: "I watched you about Sarah Palin. I listened to all you said -- that is being a public intellectual."

Levy's new book "Public Enemies: Dueling Writers Take On Each Other and the World" takes the form of letters between Levy and another famous philosopher Michel Houellebecq. On the show last night, Levy and Colbert traded shots at Palin and America and democracy.


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