Tuesday, October 02, 2007


"Lacking illusions, lacking shelter, today's universe is divided between boredom (increasingly anguished at the prospect of losing its resources, through depletion) or (when the spark of the symbolic is maintained and desire to speak explodes) abjection and piercing laughter" (Powers of Horror, p. 133). Illusions are in fact ubiquitous, but what about shelter? (As I think about this, I find it necessary to note that I don't mean romanticize homelessness in modern societies or the plight of refugees.) Is the thinking person today without shelter? Does the poet find shelter in poetry, the astronomer in the stars, the psychoanalyist in analysis, the reader in books? Are these shelters more like temporary workspaces and less like homes away from home? What kind of forces is today's thinker exposed to? Is indifference a force? Is symbolic discourse a force? Is today a force? In a world of enduring grievous violence what are we to make of such forces? Must the situation of today's intellectual be either boring or risible and abject? I respect the capacity to take shelter.

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posted by Fido the Yak at 4:33 PM.


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