" I don't want my writing to be any simpler or clearer than life
itself." John Updike
Most people have a map/model of the world which is kindergraden
simple. Believeing, for example, that a sort of ultimate Apha Male of
Alpha Males sits in a high place running things long distance or that
the Queen of England is worthy of especial respect for some reason.
Any text more complex than this map/model will seem incomprehensible.
This is good. the point is not to educate those who are rigidly
conventional in their thinking but to develop strategies which will
allow those of us who are not brain-dead to live the best life
possible in spite of them.
I don't have any interest in reading anything which would make
sense to the typical joe or jane on the bus. I am deluged with crap
intended to make sense to joe and jane in realtime and typically
filter out as much of it as possible just in the interest of avoiding
boredom and anoyance. Please tell me something I don't know. I find
easy listening music and easy reading text equally empty of interest.
The whole world has been dumbed down to accomidate the incuriousity
and limited cognitive capacity of the kind of person who votes
I am subbed to this line hoping to read something which rises above
the level of the common bullshit, not to get hit with a little more of
the same. Just as I prefer white noise to muzak, I prefer postings
that read like word salad to postings that read like anything that
might be said on/or by Kathy Lee and Regis. I'll take
incomphrehensible over predictable everytime and if the word salad
turns out, on closer inspection, to actually mean something I'm
delighted. I have not searched in vain. There are some kinds of shit
which are more worth wading through just because past experience shows
that some kinds of shit are more likely to be located in close
proximity to shinola, to something new and important I haven't heard
---Quentin Merritt <J.Q.Merritt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> > Divorced from a text and
> > context a great deal of writing suffers. In any case, I'm not
sure I want
> > my theory spoon-fed to me in easily digestible (read
> > Best wishes.
> > Stuart
> Is there an occluded middle here? I agree that writing can easily be
> made to appear absurd by removing it from its context, but what are
> you saying here: that most post-whateverist writing IS actually
> perfectly comprehensible when read in context - or that even in
> context it is incomprehensible (to all but the initiated), and that's
> how it should remain?
> If writing can be clear, why shouldn't it be so? I am not questioning
> the need for specialist terms, or doubting that some ideas are
> complex and require work - but is this really the only reason why so
> much writing is - to many people - nigh on unintelligible?
> Quentin Merritt
> School of Humanities, University of Greenwich
> Wellington Street, Woolwich, London, SE18 6PF, UK
> Tel. +44 (0)181 331 9065
> Fax. +44 (0)181 331 8805
> E-mail: j.q.merritt@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
"I am no doubt not the only one who writes in order to have no face. Do not ask me who I am and do not ask me to remain the same: leave it to our bureaucrats and our police to see that our papers are in order." Michel Foucault
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