Do you think much about the audience for your books?
Don’t dare. Don’t want to. But, anyway, I don’t write because there’s an audience. I write because there is literature.
– Paris Review, The Art of Fiction No. 143
Read the book, then watch this doc if you can get your hands on it.
“All great art contains at its center contemplation, a dynamic contemplation.”
This is classic Gore all the way. A video in which Vidal names the 1%, calls for the legalization of drugs, excoriates the prison pipeline, and wonders, why, after terrorizing so many, we haven’t been bombed yet.
P.S. If you’re not patient, “fast forward” past the introductions.
So, I could get into detailing all of things i disagree with, but RR is just sort of great unto himself – and who doesn’t love listening to an academic with a strong southern accent discuss Baudrillard. Of course, enduring questions will always be relevant – and unfortunately, questions of virtual reality and the real will be relevant long after we are dead and gone… For those lit crit masochists out there, this is probably around twenty years old, so it’s like a little theory and america time capsule. You can see RR struggling with the definition of the – or The – Post-modern…There is a lot of overreach here, but with perspective it’s easy to pick out questions and subjects for further discussion.
So, have at it. It’s a fun ride (if you’re into this kind of thing…).
“Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own.”
– Jonathan Swift
Click picture above to read Sam Sacks’ fine review of “Stay Illusion! The Hamlet Doctrine”
This is what I have to say about it:
Well done man.
I like the approach of the authors as well as your approach to the review. The psychology of human action (or non-action) is an inexhaustible subject because we will never know precisely why we do things (or do not). This may be at the root of the brilliance of the play. It gives us a question to which there is no answer. Human beings are rational and irrational, and never the twain shall meet. While this is true, we are cursed at the same time with the need to know. We want certainty about why someone acts they way they do – and we are cursed again with a need to control how others act. Maybe that is at the root of some people’s need to create robots – and to make them appear more and more human.
I’ve always thought the question of whether Hamlet was crazy or not was as strange as the idea of temporary insanity. If one has little or no insight into choices one makes that hurt others and one kills and plots to kill, what is one? Sane? Is one sane if one has a good reason for committing condemnable acts? Is Obama sane for killing children with drones and bragging that he is, “good at killing people”? Insanity (or at least irrationality) and human actions often seem one and the same to me.
I enjoyed the Slings and Arrows clip – and that last brilliant clip as well. Erudite actors! Fun and edifying. And how fitting that Wells says, “…the first point about Hamlet is that he is a genius.” Well, of course that is what he would say! As your piece observed, Wells reading of the play revealed as much about Wells as it did Hamlet.
Thanks to Patricia @opheliasings for turning me on to this series (festival).
Click picture to watch video
Click to read a bit of commentary about Zizek and his movies at Open Culture
Coincidentally, not long ago I posted a link to They Live on this site. Just scroll down or search to watch.