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[Xmca-l] Re: Verismo and the Gothic



Hi David!

No apology necessary! I actually watched a little of your opera. But I thought it was funny that it was a 2 hour opera following a 600+ book. And also...we are long posters!  And! And! And! This thread is about temporality!  :)

Unfortunately I am not a multi-tasker, I fail miserably at that. If I watch opera I must watch it with all five senses. Unless it's a recording then with all my ears, while perhaps drawing or journaling. Unless I decide to lip synch and my living room becomes my stage, then it's all five senses again.

The most multitasking I can do is maybe read a few papers and a few pages in a few books in short spurts, to put one down and pick up another until eventually I've read all what I set out to read. This never happens that I read what I set out to read, however.

[An aside: I wonder if others would share their reading habits? How do you read, paper or pixels? And when do you read? And how do you like to read?]

But actually I cherish opera David, I have fallen away from it for the past several years, but would gladly return were I near an opera house. I really like your observation of opera for cleaning the mind, that sounds really fab, and I think you are right. 

I love the idea of Madame Butterfly as my ear worm!  :) 

Silky ears!

Pertaining to the Verisimo (and plastic surgery which I find somewhat gothic, actually), I have always considered the Gothic to be dark and brooding, yes, but because of a lack of hope in changing times where there is nothing but uncertainty, especially if one is an aristocrat. Heads rolling and all that. I don't know if it is possible for anything modern to be gothic, meaning 20th century. Is there? I can only think the of the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Metropolis, and Nosferatu. There's Film Noire which is dark, but that doesn't seem brooding or full of self loathing, like the silent pictures from Germany. Hitchcock maybe, but then again, he was German too! 

Is it possible though, that Vygotsky seemed romantic because when he wrote Psychology of Art he was at the beginning of his career and not the end? 

Intriguing idea to take consciousness as my hero! Say more on that?

Atemporality vs temporality has to do with inability to measure versus ability to measure, in that something that is atemporal is neither an instant nor an eternity(though might be both) since within the atemporal nothing seems to change, time stands still. The present moment can have that aspect of complete stillness. 

Temporality, on the other metronome, is measurable, it has a rhythm perhaps. There is a beginning a middle and an end (narrative?), but that also can be in the present moment. What differs is there is a sense of time passing, like sitting in a train with the landscape scuttling by, or watching Koyaanisqatsi.

Next: I'm thinking of an old-fashioned slide lantern that spins on its vertical axis with the picture is viewed through a slot which remains stationary. The animation occurs from the images spinning past the slot with the lantern projecting that image onto a far wall. We don't see the images coming or the images past, just the one projecting outward from the slot.

My interpretation of The Vygotsky Moment is the moment of change, but this may not at all be instantaneous; it develops, it may be logical as you say. But how do we measure change if not from a stationary point in time? Yep, you guessed it, the present moment! 

I do not know any point in time that isn't stationary, except the present moment. If there is a sense of change in the present moment, that change is based upon attention, not upon time. So that's why I can be sitting here and then suddenly go to the Bahamas and then come back and realized I've burned my popcorn. 

Nothing happened to the present moment, just my attention shifted.

See and this is the thing! In modern cultures, typically, the present moment passes us by because frequently we do not attend to it. However, it never leaves us, rather, we leave it with our attention even though we are in it (always), it is our minds that are thinking of the past or of the future, but rarely tending to in the present. In cultures that are more intertwined with nature or being in relationship with others without being in a hurry, I find the opposite is the case, that the present moment is all there is. There is a lot of leisure in this conception of time, or this attending to time.

What is interesting about Verismo is that it is like a layering of concentric lanterns that provides a sort of psychedelic experience in which my attention is asking, "Will the real present moment please stand up?" And then all of them do (because there's only one).

Kind regards,

Annalisa