Log24

Saturday, March 18, 2017

News Search

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 12:30 PM

See also, in this journal, "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead."

Monday, November 16, 2015

Good Question.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 4:00 PM

YouTube 

Uploaded on Sep 17, 2009

Who'll love the devil?
Who'll sing his song?
Who will love the devil and his song?

"The pictures are understood to have been taken
just a few minutes before three gunmen burst into
the venue at 9.40pm (8.40pm GMT) as the
Californian rock band were launching into one of
their favourites, Kiss The Devil."

Read more: DailyMail.com.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The World as Myth

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 10:48 PM

Three approaches to The World as Myth

From Heinlein's 1985 The Cat Who Walks Through Walls

The World as Myth is a subtle concept. It has sometimes been called multiperson solipsism, despite the internal illogic of that phrase. Yet illogic may be necessary, as the concept denies logic. For many centuries religion held sway as the explanation of the universe- or multiverse. The details of revealed religions differed wildly but were essentially the same: Somewhere up in the sky-or down in the earth-or in a volcano-any inaccessible place- there was an old man in a nightshirt who knew everything and was all powerful and created everything and rewarded and punished and could be bribed.

      "Sometimes this Almighty was female but not often because human males are usually bigger, stronger, and more belligerent; God was created in Pop's image.

      "The Almighty-God idea came under attack because it explained nothing; it simply pushed all explanations one stage farther away. In the nineteenth century atheistic positivism started displacing the Almighty-God notion in that minority of the population that bathed regularly.

      "Atheism had a limited run, as it, too, explains nothing, being merely Godism turned upside down. Logical positivism was based on the physical science of the nineteenth century which, physicists of that century honestly believed, fully explained the universe as a piece of clockwork.

      "The physicists of the twentieth century made short work of that idea. Quantum mechanics and Schrodringer's cat tossed out the clockwork world of 1890 and replaced it with a fog of probability in which anything could happen. Of course the intellectual class did not notice this for many decades, as an intellectual is a highly educated man who can't do arithmetic with his shoes on, and is proud of his lack. Nevertheless, with the death of positivism, Godism and Creationism came back stronger than ever.

      "In the late twentieth century -correct me when I' m wrong, Hilda-Hilda and her family were driven off Earth by a devil, one they dubbed 'the Beast.' They fled in a vehicle you have met, Gay Deceiver, and in their search for safety they visited many dimensions, many universesand Hilda made the greatest philosophical discovery of all time."

      "I'll bet you say that to all the girls!"

      "Quiet, dear. They visited, among more mundane places, the Land of Oz-"

      I sat up with a jerk. Not too much sleep last night and Dr. Harshaw's lecture was sleep-inducing. "Did you say 'Oz'?"

      "I tell you three times. Oz, Oz, Oz. They did indeed visit the fairyland dreamed up by L. Frank Baum. And the Wonderland invented by the Reverend Mr. Dodgson to please Alice. And other places known only to fiction. Hilda discovered what none of us had noticed before because we were inside it: The World is Myth. We create it ourselves-and we change it ourselves. A truly strong myth maker, such as Homer, such as Baum, such as the creator of Tarzan, creates substantial and lasting worlds whereas the fiddlin', unimaginative liars and fabulists shape nothing new and their tedious dreams are forgotten. ….

Friday, November 6, 2009

Where Entertainment is God (continued)

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 1:06 AM 

Click to enlarge.

Ad, with army base shooter in video, for 'The Men Who Stare at Goats'

Colorado Springs Gazette
movie reviewer Brandon Fibbs yesterday:

“Much of this is genuinely amusing.
So why then am I not laughing?”

NY Times on the Fort Hood shootings that took place in the afternoon of Nov. 5, 2009

Saturday, April 5, 2014

A Princeton Half-Hour

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

"May you be in heaven a full half-hour
before the devil knows you're dead ."

Related material:
Yesterday's posts of 12 PM and 8 PM,
and the life of Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Say It With Flowers

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 6:30 PM

The title is a reference to the Jan. 4 post "Learning Guide."

Update of 7:59 PM ET Feb. 2 —

"… they entered the apartment together around 11:30 a.m."

— NY Times  today on the discovery of Hoffman's body.

Synchronicity:  Today's 11 AM (ET) Log24 post, as well as
a 2007 Hoffman film involving drugs, jewels, and a planned
​escape to Brazil —

"May you be in heaven a full half-hour
 before the devil knows you're dead ."

Friday, January 31, 2014

Diamond Star

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 1:00 PM

From The Diamond and the Star ,  by John Warden*
(London, Shepheard-Walwyn Ltd.,  June 1, 2009) —

(The quotation is from Kipling's "The Conundrum of the Workshops.")

IMAGE- The Devil's question - 'It's pretty, but is it Art?'

Answer — Some would say "Yes."

Part I: From a search for "Diamond Star" in this journal —

The Diamond Star

http://www.log24.com/log/pix11B/110905-StellaOctangulaView.jpg

Part II: From the Facebook photos of Oslo artist Josefine Lyche—

* Obituary link, added at 10:45 PM ET Jan. 31 after reading  a publisher's note 
  saying that "The author sadly died before the book was published."

  Perhaps sadly, perhaps not.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Heaven’s Gate

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:01 PM

Yesterday's post Devil's Gate provided a dark view of life and culture.

A more cheerful view is provided by the late Gail Levin,
a maker of PBS "American Masters" documentaries
that included, notably, Jeff Bridges and Marilyn Monroe.

Levin reportedly died at 67 on July 31, 2013.*

An image from an interview with Levin —

The date in the image, July 19th, 2006, is the broadcast
date of the PBS "American Masters" program on Monroe.
A check for synchronicity shows there was no Log24 post
on that date.

See, however, posts for the day before— "Sacred Order"—
and the day after— "Bead Game."

A related quote from an article linked to in the latter—

"First world culture, which is 'pagan and in the majority
everywhere,' has as its defining characteristic
a 'primacy of possibility,' or pop— a broadly inclusive
concept that covers everything from the Aboriginal
dreamtime to Plato’s Forms."

Review by Jess Castle of Philip Rieff’s 
Sacred Order/Social Order, Vol. 1: My Life among the
Deathworks: Illustrations of the Aesthetics of Authority
,
University of Virginia Press, 2006. 256 pages, $34.95.

This quote may serve as the missing July 19, 2006, post.

Related material:  Dreamtime,  Possibility,  and Plato's Forms.

* See that date in this journal for two less famous American
  masters, artist Edward Valigursky and writer Robert Silverberg.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Requiem for a Cat

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 8:28 PM

Cover art by Robert Goldstrom

From “Schrödinger’s Cat,” by Ursula K. Le Guin
(Buffalo Gals and Other Animal Presences )

….

There was silence then: deep silence. We both gazed, I afoot, Rover kneeling, at the box. No sound. Nothing happened. Nothing would happen. Nothing would ever happen, until we lifted the lid of the box.

“Like Pandora,” I said in a weak whisper. I could not quite recall Pandora’s legend. She had let all the plagues and evils out of the box, of course, but there had been something else, too. After all the devils were let loose, something quite different, quite unexpected, had been left. What had it been? Hope? A dead cat? I could not remember.

Impatience welled up in me. I turned on Rover, glaring. He returned the look with expressive brown eyes. You can’t tell me dogs haven’t got souls.

“Just exactly what are you trying to prove?” I demanded.

“That the cat will be dead, or not dead,” he murmured submissively. “Certainty. All I want is certainty. To know for sure that God does play dice with the world.”

I looked at him for a while with fascinated incredulity. “Whether he does, or doesn’t,” I said, “do you think he’s going to leave you a note in the box?” I went to the box, and with a rather dramatic gesture, flung the lid back. Rover staggered up from his knees, gasping, to look. The cat was, of course, not there.

Rover neither barked, nor fainted, nor cursed, nor wept. He really took it very well.

“Where is the cat?” he asked at last.

“Where is the box?”

“Here.”

“Where’s here?”

“Here is now.”

“We used to think so,” I said, “but really we should use larger boxes.”

He gazed about in mute bewilderment, and did not flinch even when the roof of the house was lifted off just like the lid of the box, letting in the unconscionable, inordinate light of the stars. He had just time to breathe, “Oh, wow!”

I have identified the note that keeps sounding. I checked it on the mandolin before the glue melted. It is the note A, the one that drove the composer Schumann mad. It is a beautiful, clear tone, much clearer now that the stars are visible. I shall miss the cat. I wonder if he found what it was we lost?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

For All Hallows Day

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 11:07 AM

The following was suggested by the Sermon
of October 30 (the day preceding Devil's Night)
and by yesterday's Beauty, Truth, Halloween.

"The German language has itself been influenced by Goethe's Faust , particularly by the first part. One example of this is the phrase 'des Pudels Kern ,' which means the real nature or deeper meaning of something (that was not evident before). The literal translation of 'des Pudels Kern ' is 'the core of the poodle,' and it originates from Faust's exclamation upon seeing the poodle (which followed him home) turn into Mephistopheles." —Wikipedia

See also the following readings (click to enlarge)—

Hans Primas on Pauli's 'des Pudels Kern'

Suzanne Gieser on Pauli's 'des Pudels Kern'

Note particularly…

"The main enigma of any description of a patternless
unus mundus  is to find appropriate partitions which
create relevant patterns." —Hans Primas, above

"In general, the partition of into right cosets
can differ from its partition into left cosets. Galois
was the first to recognize the importance of when
these partitions agree. This happens when the
subgroup is normal." — David A. Cox,
Galois Theory , Wiley, 2004, p. 510

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Rift Designs

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 8:28 PM

From the current index to obituaries at Telegraph.co.uk—

Teufel is also featured in today's New York Times

"Mr. Teufel became a semicelebrity, helped in no small part by his last name, which means 'devil' in German."

From Group Analysis ,  June 1993, vol. 26 no. 2, 203-212—

The Problem of Good and Evil

by Ronald Sandison, Ledbury, Herefordshire HR8 2EY, UK

In my contribution to the Group Analysis Special Section: "Aspects of Religion in Group Analysis" (Sandison, 1993) I hinted that any consideration of a spiritual dimension to the group involves us in a discussion on whether we are dealing with good or evil spirits. But if we say that God is in the group, why is not the Devil there also? Can good and evil coexist in the same group matrix? Is the recognition of evil "nothing but" the ability to distinguish between good and bad? If not, then what is evil? Is it no more than the absence of good?

These and other questions were worked on at a joint Institute of Group Analysis and Group-Analytic Society (London) Workshop entitled "The Problem of Good and Evil." We considered the likelihood that good and evil coexist in all of us, as well as in the whole of the natural world, not only on earth, but in the cosmos and in God himself What we actually do with good and evil is to split them apart, thereby shelving the problem but at the same time creating irreconcilable opposites. This article examines this splitting and how we can work with it psychoanalytically.

This suggests a biblical remark—

"Now there was a day… when the sons of God
came to present themselves before the Lord,
and Satan came also among them."

Job 1:6, quoted by Chesterton in The Man Who Was Thursday

Sandison died on June 18. See the Thursday, August 5, Log24 post "The Matrix."

Teufel died on July 6. See the Log24 posts for that day.

The title of this  post, "rift designs," refers to a recurring theme in the July 6 posts. It is taken from Heidegger.

From a recent New Yorker  review of Absence of Mind  by Marilynne Robinson—

"Robinson is eloquent in her defense of the mind’s prerogatives, but her call for a renewed metaphysics might be better served by rereading Heidegger than by dusting off the Psalms."

Following this advice, we find—

"Propriation gathers the rift-design of the saying and unfolds it  in such a way that it becomes the well-joined structure of a manifold showing."

p. 415 of Heidegger's Basic Writings , edited by David Farrell Krell, HarperCollins paperback, 1993

"Das Ereignis versammelt den Aufriß der Sage und entfaltet ihn zum Gefüge des vielfältigen Zeigens." 

— Heidegger, Weg zur Sprache

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mysteries of Faith

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 9:00 AM

From today's NY Times

http://www.log24.com/log/pix10/100216-NYTobits.jpg

Obituaries for mystery authors
Ralph McInerny and Dick Francis

From the date (Jan. 29) of McInerny's death–

"…although a work of art 'is formed around something missing,' this 'void is its vanishing point, not its essence.'"

Harvard University Press on Persons and Things (Walpurgisnacht, 2008), by Barbara Johnson

From the date (Feb. 14) of Francis's death–

2x2x2 cube

The EIghtfold Cube

The "something missing" in the above figure is an eighth cube, hidden behind the others pictured.

This eighth cube is not, as Johnson would have it, a void and "vanishing point," but is instead the "still point" of T.S. Eliot. (See the epigraph to the chapter on automorphism groups in Parallelisms of Complete Designs, by Peter J. Cameron. See also related material in this journal.) The automorphism group here is of course the order-168 simple group of Felix Christian Klein.

For a connection to horses, see
a March 31, 2004, post
commemorating the birth of Descartes
  and the death of Coxeter–

Putting Descartes Before Dehors

     Binary coordinates for a 4x2 array  Chess knight formed by a Singer 7-cycle

For a more Protestant meditation,
see The Cross of Descartes

Descartes

Descartes's Cross

"I've been the front end of a horse
and the rear end. The front end is better."
— Old vaudeville joke

For further details, click on
the image below–

Quine and Derrida at Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Tuesday February 10, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 7:11 PM
Coming Soon!

National Treasure logo

Trailer:

FinancialStability.gov site at 7 p.m. ET Feb. 10, 2009

“Now, here’s my plan…”

“‘What plan?’ asked Bert Ely, an Alexandria, Va., banking consultant. ‘The devil is in the details, and the details are hiding in the bushes or deep underground.’

The Dow, which was down only about 70 points before Geithner’s speech, fell sharply as soon as he began talking.”

Walter Hamilton in The Los Angeles Times today

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wednesday November 19, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 2:56 AM

Sympathy for Baird Bryant

"Pleased to meet you
Hope you guess my name
But what's puzzling you
Is the nature of my game"

The Rolling Stones

"'Don't you want to
hear him call your name
when you're standing
at the pearly gates?'
I told the Preacher 'Yes, I do,
but I hope he don't call today.'"

— Kenny Chesney, song at the CMA Awards on Wednesday, November 12, quoted here at 9:00 AM on Thursday, Novermber 13

Related material:

LA Times obituary for the experienced bohemian writer and filmmaker Baird Bryant, who died at 80 on Thursday, November 13. Bryant filmed parts of "Easy Rider" in 1968 and of the Altamont concert in 1969. He was apparently a member of the Harvard College Class of 1950.

A more complete account of Bryant's life

Thirty references to the Devil in a book by Bryant

Solace With Interruptions

(Log24 entries for November 12, 13, and 14 — the day before Bryant's death, the day of his death, and the day after)
 

Friday, January 19, 2007

Friday January 19, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:11 AM

Twisted Honeycomb

From a review in today’s New York Times by Janet Maslin of Norman Mailer’s new novel, The Castle in the Forest:

“The wise beekeeper does not wear dark clothing, lest it pick up light-colored pollen. Italian bees are gentler and more chic than the Austrian variety. The mating box, capping fork and spur-wheel embedder are essential tools for apiculture. And all power in the beehive rests with a treacherous but fragrant bitch.

All this bee talk crops up in ‘The Castle in the Forest,’ Norman Mailer’s zzzzz-filled new novel about Adolf Hitler’s tender, metaphor-fraught and (in this book’s view) literally bedeviled boyhood. So it is not a stretch for the book’s jacket copy to insist that ‘now, on the eve of his 84th birthday, Norman Mailer may well be saying more than he ever has before.’ More about beekeeping– absolutely.”

Related material:

Twisted Honeycombs

Twisted Honeycombs

and Geometry for Jews

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Thursday June 23, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:00 PM

Mathematics and Metaphor

The current (June/July) issue of the Notices of the American Mathematical Society has two feature articles.  The first, on the vulgarizer Martin Gardner, was dealt with here in a June 19 entry, Darkness Visible.  The second is related to a letter of André Weil (pdf) that is in turn related to mathematician Barry Mazur’s attempt to rewrite mathematical history  and to vulgarize other people’s research by using metaphors drawn, it would seem, from the Weil letter.
 
A Mathematical Lie conjectures that Mazur’s revising of history was motivated by a desire to dramatize some arcane mathematics, the Taniyama conjecture, that deals with elliptic curves and modular forms, two areas of mathematics that have been known since the nineteenth century to be closely related.

Mazur led author Simon Singh to believe that these two areas of mathematics were, before Taniyama’s conjecture of 1955, completely unrelated — 

“Modular forms and elliptic equations live in completely different regions of the mathematical cosmos, and nobody would ever have believed that there was the remotest link between the two subjects.” — Simon Singh, Fermat’s Enigma, 1998 paperback, p. 182

This is false.  See Robert P. Langlands, review of Elliptic Curves, by Anthony W. Knapp, Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society, January 1994.

It now appears that Mazur’s claim was in part motivated by a desire to emulate the great mathematician André Weil’s manner of speaking; Mazur parrots Weil’s “bridge” and “Rosetta stone” metaphors —

From Peter Woit’s weblog, Feb. 10, 2005:

“The focus of Weil’s letter is the analogy between number fields and the field of algebraic functions of a complex variable. He describes his ideas about studying this analogy using a third, intermediate subject, that of function fields over a finite field, which he thinks of as a ‘bridge‘ or ‘Rosetta stone.'” 

In “A 1940 Letter of André Weil on Analogy in Mathematics,” (pdf), translated by Martin H. Krieger, Notices of the A.M.S., March 2005, Weil writes that

“The purely algebraic theory of algebraic functions in any arbitrary field of constants is not rich enough so that one might draw useful lessons from it. The ‘classical’ theory (that is, Riemannian) of algebraic functions over the field of constants of the complex numbers is infinitely richer; but on the one hand it is too much so, and in the mass of facts some real analogies become lost; and above all, it is too far from the theory of numbers. One would be totally obstructed if there were not a bridge between the two.  And just as God defeats the devil: this bridge exists; it is the theory of the field of algebraic functions over a finite field of constants….

On the other hand, between the function fields and the ‘Riemannian’ fields, the distance is not so large that a patient study would not teach us the art of passing from one to the other, and to profit in the study of the first from knowledge acquired about the second, and of the extremely powerful means offered to us, in the study of the latter, from the integral calculus and the theory of analytic functions. That is not to say that at best all will be easy; but one ends up by learning to see something there, although it is still somewhat confused. Intuition makes much of it; I mean by this the faculty of seeing a connection between things that in appearance are completely different; it does not fail to lead us astray quite often. Be that as it may, my work consists in deciphering a trilingual text {[cf. the Rosetta Stone]}; of each of the three columns I have only disparate fragments; I have some ideas about each of the three languages: but I know as well there are great differences in meaning from one column to another, for which nothing has prepared me in advance. In the several years I have worked at it, I have found little pieces of the dictionary. Sometimes I worked on one column, sometimes under another.”

Here is another statement of the Rosetta-stone metaphor, from Weil’s translator, Martin H.  Krieger, in the A.M.S. Notices of November 2004,  “Some of What Mathematicians Do” (pdf):

“Weil refers to three columns, in analogy with the Rosetta Stone’s three languages and their arrangement, and the task is to ‘learn to read Riemannian.’  Given an ability to read one column, can you find its translation in the other columns?  In the first column are Riemann’s transcendental results and, more generally, work in analysis and geometry.  In the second column is algebra, say polynomials with coefficients in the complex numbers or in a finite field. And in the third column is arithmetic or number theory and combinatorial properties.”

For greater clarity, see  Armand Borel (pdf) on Weil’s Rosetta stone, where the three columns are referred to as Riemannian (transcendental), Italian (“algebraico-geometric,” over finite fields), and arithmetic (i.e., number-theoretic).
 
From Fermat’s Enigma, by Simon Singh, Anchor paperback, Sept. 1998, pp. 190-191:

Barry Mazur: “On the one hand you have the elliptic world, and on the other you have the modular world.  Both these branches of mathematics had been studied intensively but separately…. Than along comes the Taniyama-Shimura conjecture, which is the grand surmise that there’s a bridge between these two completely different worlds.  Mathematicians love to build bridges.”

Simon Singh: “The value of mathematical bridges is enormous.  They enable communities of mathematicians who have been living on separate islands to exchange ideas and explore each other’s  creations…. The great potential of the Taniyama-Shimura conjecture was that it would connect two islands and allow them to speak to each other for the first time.  Barry Mazur thinks of the Taniyama-Shimura conjecture as a translating device similar to the Rosetta stone…. ‘It’s as if you know one language and this Rosetta stone is going to give you an intense understanding of the other language,’ says Mazur.  ‘But the Taniyama-Shimura conjecture is a Rosetta stone with a certain magical power.'”

If Mazur, who is scheduled to speak at a conference on Mathematics and Narrative this July, wants more material on stones with magical powers, he might consult The Blue Matrix and The Diamond Archetype.

Monday, October 4, 2004

Monday October 4, 2004

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 4:15 PM

Today’s birthday: Anne Rice.

Vampire Quality

To Jacques Levy, cont. 

and

to Richard Avedon, cont.

 Levy directed “Red Cross,”
a Sam Shepard play that is
said to be about
the vampire quality
of language
.”
_____________________

From Under the Volcano,
Chapter II:

Hotel Bella Vista
Gran Baile Noviembre 1938
a Beneficio de la Cruz Roja.
Los Mejores Artistas del radio en accion.
No falte Vd.

Jesse McKinley in today’s New York Times:

“In a surprise entry to the fall season, Sam Shepard – actor, playwright and sexagenarian heartthrob – has written a new, sharp-elbowed farce….

The play, ‘The God of Hell,’ was written over the summer by Mr. Shepard, 60, who wanted to stage it before the Nov. 2 election….

In a telephone interview on Friday, Mr. Shepard said that the play was ‘a takeoff on Republican fascism, in a way,’ and that he thought it would be more pertinent if seen during the presidential campaign.”

John Kerry by
Richard Avedon

 
Devil’s
Advocate

See The Script:
“Vanity is definitely my favorite sin.”

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Wednesday September 22, 2004

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 2:38 PM

Tribute

In memory of Russ Meyer, who "made industrial films for Standard Oil and lumber companies before making his own films," a picture that might aptly (see Pi continued) be titled

The Magic Schmuck:

Aluminum puzzle by Niek Neuwahl.

By the same designer:

Game: Auf Teufel komm raus

Click on picture for details.

Object of game:
Connect the devils
with their tail ends
.

Manufacturer:

Click on logo for details.

Related material:
The Crimson Passion
 

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Tuesday June 22, 2004

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 9:00 AM

Dirty Trick

Some quotations in memory of philosopher Stuart Hampshire, who died on June 13, 2004.

From the Hampshire obituary in The Guardian:

I

He frequently told the story of how, towards the end of the war, he had to interrogate a French traitor (imprisoned by the Free French), who refused to cooperate unless he was allowed to live. Should Hampshire, knowing the man was condemned to die, promise him a reprieve, which he was in no position to give, or truthfully refuse it, thereby jeopardising the lives of Resistance fighters?

“If you’re in a war,” said Hampshire, “you can’t start thinking, ‘Well I can’t lie to a man who’s going to be shot tomorrow and tell him that he isn’t.’ ”

But what the whole anecdote, and its incessant retelling, revealed was that Hampshire had, in fact, thought precisely what he said was unthinkable, and that whichever of the two decisions he finally took lay heavy on his conscience ever afterwards. Indicatively, too, it was especially loathsome to him because, although he did not say this in so many words, the traitor was almost a mirror image of himself – a cultivated young intellectual, looking like a film star, much influenced by elegant literary stylists – except that, in the traitor’s case, his literary mentors were fascist.

II

It is hard to know how Hampshire’s academic career was vitiated by the scandal over his affair with Ayer’s wife Renee, whom he married in 1961 after a divorce in which he was named as co-respondent. Even if less a matter of the dons’ moral conviction than their concern over how All Souls would appear, the affair caused a massive furore….

From a log24 entry on the day before Hampshire’s death:

I

“Hemingway called it a dirty trick.  It might even be an ancient Ordeal laid down on us by an evil Inquisitor in Space…. the dirty Ordeal by Death….”

— Jack Kerouac in Desolation Angels

II

The New Yorker of June 14  & 21, 2004:

…in ‘The Devil’s Eye,’ Bergman’s little-known comedy of 1960. Pablo seduces the wife of a minister, and then, sorrowful and sated, falling to his knees, he addresses her thus:

‘First, I’ll finish off that half-dug vegetable patch I saw. Then I’ll sit and let the rain fall on me. I shall feel wonderfully cool. And I’ll breakfast on one of those sour apples down by the gate. After that, I shall go back to Hell.’ “

Whether Hampshire is now in Hell, the reader may surmise.  Some evidence in Hampshire’s  favor:

His review of On Beauty and Being Just, by Elaine Scarry, in The New York Review of Books of November 18, 1999.  Note particularly his remarks on Fred Astaire, and the links to Astaire and the Four Last Things in an earlier entry of June 12, which was, as noted above, the day before Hampshire’s death.

As for the day of death itself, consider the  following  remark with which Hampshire concludes his review of Scarry’s  book:

“But one must occasionally fly the flag, and the flag, incorrigibly, is beauty.”

In this connection, see the entry of the Sunday Hampshire died, Spider Web, as well as entries on the harrowing of hell — Holy Saturday, 2004 — and on beauty —  Art Wars for Trotsky’s Birthday and A Mass for Lucero (written, as it happens, on June 13, 2002).

Sunday, July 13, 2003

Sunday July 13, 2003

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 5:09 PM

ART WARS, 5:09

The Word in the Desert

For Harrison Ford in the desert.
(See previous entry.)

    Words strain,
Crack and sometimes break,
    under the burden,
Under the tension, slip, slide, perish,
Will not stay still. Shrieking voices
Scolding, mocking, or merely chattering,
Always assail them.
    The Word in the desert
Is most attacked by voices of temptation,
The crying shadow in the funeral dance,
The loud lament of
    the disconsolate chimera.

— T. S. Eliot, Four Quartets

The link to the word “devilish” in the last entry leads to one of my previous journal entries, “A Mass for Lucero,” that deals with the devilishness of postmodern philosophy.  To hammer this point home, here is an attack on college English departments that begins as follows:

“William Faulkner’s Snopes trilogy, which recounts the generation-long rise of the drily loathsome Flem Snopes from clerk in a country store to bank president in Jefferson, Mississippi, teems with analogies to what has happened to English departments over the past thirty years.”

For more, see

The Word in the Desert,
by Glenn C. Arbery
.

See also the link on the word “contemptible,” applied to Jacques Derrida, in my Logos and Logic page.

This leads to an National Review essay on Derrida,

The Philosopher as King,
by Mark Goldblatt

A reader’s comment on my previous entry suggests the film “Scotland, PA” as viewing related to the Derrida/Macbeth link there.

I prefer the following notice of a 7-11 death, that of a powerful art museum curator who would have been well cast as Lady Macbeth:

Die Fahne Hoch,
Frank Stella,
1959


Dorothy Miller,
MOMA curator,
died at 99 on
July 11, 2003
.

From the Whitney Museum site:

Max Anderson: When artist Frank Stella first showed this painting at The Museum of Modern Art in 1959, people were baffled by its austerity. Stella responded, ‘What you see is what you see. Painting to me is a brush in a bucket and you put it on a surface. There is no other reality for me than that.’ He wanted to create work that was methodical, intellectual, and passionless. To some, it seemed to be nothing more than a repudiation of everything that had come before—a rational system devoid of pleasure and personality. But other viewers saw that the black paintings generated an aura of mystery and solemnity.

The title of this work, Die Fahne Hoch, literally means ‘The banner raised.’  It comes from the marching anthem of the Nazi youth organization. Stella pointed out that the proportions of this canvas are much the same as the large flags displayed by the Nazis.

But the content of the work makes no reference to anything outside of the painting itself. The pattern was deduced from the shape of the canvas—the width of the black bands is determined by the width of the stretcher bars. The white lines that separate the broad bands of black are created by the narrow areas of unpainted canvas. Stella’s black paintings greatly influenced the development of Minimalism in the 1960s.”

From Play It As It Lays:

   She took his hand and held it.  “Why are you here.”
   “Because you and I, we know something.  Because we’ve been out there where nothing is.  Because I wanted—you know why.”
   “Lie down here,” she said after a while.  “Just go to sleep.”
   When he lay down beside her the Seconal capsules rolled on the sheet.  In the bar across the road somebody punched King of the Road on the jukebox again, and there was an argument outside, and the sound of a bottle breaking.  Maria held onto BZ’s hand.
   “Listen to that,” he said.  “Try to think about having enough left to break a bottle over it.”
   “It would be very pretty,” Maria said.  “Go to sleep.”

I smoke old stogies I have found…    

Cigar Aficionado on artist Frank Stella:

” ‘Frank actually makes the moment. He captures it and helps to define it.’

This was certainly true of Stella’s 1958 New York debut. Fresh out of Princeton, he came to New York and rented a former jeweler’s shop on Eldridge Street on the Lower East Side. He began using ordinary house paint to paint symmetrical black stripes on canvas. Called the Black Paintings, they are credited with paving the way for the minimal art movement of the 1960s. By the fall of 1959, Dorothy Miller of The Museum of Modern Art had chosen four of the austere pictures for inclusion in a show called Sixteen Americans.”

For an even more austere picture, see

Geometry for Jews:

For more on art, Derrida, and devilishness, see Deborah Solomon’s essay in the New York Times Magazine of Sunday, June 27, 1999:

 How to Succeed in Art.

“Blame Derrida and
his fellow French theorists….”

See, too, my site

Art Wars: Geometry as Conceptual Art

For those who prefer a more traditional meditation, I recommend

Ecce Lignum Crucis

(“Behold the Wood of the Cross”)

THE WORD IN THE DESERT

For more on the word “road” in the desert, see my “Dead Poet” entry of Epiphany 2003 (Tao means road) as well as the following scholarly bibliography of road-related cultural artifacts (a surprising number of which involve Harrison Ford):

A Bibliography of Road Materials

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