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Without a language we could not tell much. Even silent films have subtitles.Do you recall the movie Amistad about the Africans kidnapped for sale as slaves? The africans had a language barrier to fight thru before they could make sense out of their new "reality". All fiction is tales we tell expressing conscious reactions to dangers in an invented language that works.When you listen to a Beowolfe spoken in language of 900 AD and you will be fascinated by what the experience has in common with much of our 2009 Drama experiences, such as Kill Bill vol.2.
I can't think offhand of any fiction I like, excepting humor categories.
I'm glad to see Chi Chi LaRue on Bloggingheads!
I can't get past her big mouth bass mouth.
Rh...Try John Steinbeck.
Facts are sterile. Fiction is interesting and useful because it fleshes out facts.Take Ancient Evenings, for instance. Mailer creates a scene on the Pharaoh's palace balcony where the guest puzzles over the source of strange light emanating from papyrus paper lamps positioned around the perimeter of a defined dining area. The guest deduces the light is produced by thousands of captive fireflies. He realizes in that moment of insight the effort required and imagines hundreds of palace slaves dedicated in the afternoon to capturing the flying bugs necessary to produce the light for one brief evening worth of eerie lighting. Entirely contrived. That's one of several scores of such contrivances and there is nothing, and I mean nothing, that can bring you as close to the mythology, the religion, the magic, the arbitrariness, the ridiculousness, and the majesty of ancient Egyptian life as it must have been like as that one single book by Norman Mailer, no matter how long you study it, or how many scholarly sources you study. Another scene of a boy falling asleep in an elaborately painted room and that room coming alive in that half-asleep state, is simply the most astounding pandect on all known Egyptian art all on the walls of a single room. If ever in need of an idea for an Egyptian painting that is a scene of everyday life and not a glyphic representation of section of Book of the Dead I have only to reference those pages by Mailer. Say what you will of the man, but that particular work of his is brilliant.The same can be said of Aztec by Gary Jennings, also The Raptor by the same author, a book about the Visigoths and the Ostrogoths at the time of Roman decadence as told by a cross-dressing hermaphrodite. The daily life at a Medieval abbey is learned on the pages of The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco. Jean Auel, Suzannah Dunn, Ken Follet, Mary Renault, Robert Graves, Mika Waltari, Anne Easter Smith, Margaret Atwood, Henryk Sienkiewicz, Jean Plaidy, to name a few off the top, the list of great historical authors is simply too extensive and too good to exhaust. Good Lord, even Thomas Harris can scare the pants off you with his horrible and excellent novel about his insight into the mind of a psychopathic murderer precisely because it is based on fact. These outstanding writers and others like them are why we are attracted to fiction.
Way back in the 18th century, Samuel Johnson complained about how easily he wasted his time in trivial endeavors (in his case, chemistry experiments). He observed that to be human is to be bored most of the time.Economic historian Gregory Clark describes hunter-gatherer cultures who are able to obtain enough food for survival in just a fraction of a day's work. Then they sit around complaining about how hungry they are.The famously sex-crazed bonobo monkeys don't indulge in anywhere near as much copulation in the wild. In zoos, they're bored out of their minds and don't know how to read.People are lazy monkeys and fiction fills the time.
People like horror films because it allows them to feel an emotion they rarely feel in modern society: fear. And they get to feel it while actually safe.
Pandect: 1) a comprehensive digest or complete treatise 2) a complete body or code of laws.Okay, so I got a new word out of Chip Ahoy's post. But to say that anything Mailer wrote has value, or is even bearable to read -- no.
What is it with these women and their three names? Is a first name and last name not good enough anymore and now you have to make yourself stand out by having 3 names. How about just one catchy name, you know, like Charro.
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