brianv wrote:Would the tree indeed fall, if there were no-one to observe it? Would there really be a sound, if there were no brain to process the tree's collapse as sound? And wouldn't their unnecessary inclusion greatly reduce on processing power in the Simulation?
nonhocapito wrote:Not to repeat myself, but I have to agree with fbenario (up until the "morons") that this alleged irony is really not meant and cannot be meant for Delillo's readers. Not just, or rather not at all, in my opinion, because irony is lost on some people -- but because I believe that that irony is really not there, at least as a general purpose.
In the examples you bring forward, pdgalles, I simply see that some characters or situations in a work of fiction can be ironic; they can deal with irony issues that others take seriously, and make that irony very visible and enjoyable for the reader too, since a lively, ironic, original character or situation is often enjoyable.
Irony embedded in characters or situations is undoubtedly a chief ingredient in fiction since it helps the writer from becoming too passionate or too involved in the issues the characters are involved in and passionate about.
But this doesn't mean the intentions of the whole book are ironic.
Nobody could deny that Franz Kafka used irony a lot in his books, and created a number of situations that are fantastically ironic -- but to define Kafka's works as "ironic" would be incredibly limiting, unjust and ultimately deceiving. Is "The Trial" describing something serious really meaning that it isn't serious? Or is it rather a deadly serious book that sustain itself thanks to the injection of some useful irony here and there?
And also, once again i don't think we are agreeing on what irony is. If DeLillo or Baudrillard or Godard really want to tell us that the news are simulated and that many tragic events including 9/11 are fictional, don't you think they, with all their artful techniques and brilliant minds, would make this message a little more transparent? A little more readable? Why "irony" should mean "not making things clear"?
One last example. An italian writer like Leonardo Sciascia has used in his books plenty of irony. For example he loved to describe the hypocrisy, the rule of denial in the secluded worlds of rural, sicilian towns with euphemisms that were meant as a mockery of the euphemisms used by his characters, usually to hide and at the same time reveal things from one another. This is a form of irony, but it would go rarely missed by the reader. When Sciascia, first among the italian writers after WWII, dared to write a novel about the crude, real face of mafia hidden from the general public ("Il giorno della civetta"), nobody had a doubt in Italy what that novel was about.
As I said, I firmly believe that there is not one reader of "Falling Man" out there who, by reading that book, had the revelation that the whole thing was fake. Not one.
If we do not 'come to our senses' soon, we will have permanently forfeited the chance of constructing any meaningful alternatives to the pseudo-existence which passes for life in our current 'Civilization of the Image.'
Jean Baudrillard wrote:To seek new blood in its own death, to renew the cycle through the mirror of crisis, negativity, and antipower: this is the only solution - alibi of every power, of every institution attempting to break the vicious circle of its irresponsibility and of its fundamental nonexistence, of its already seen and of its already dead.
Jean Baudrillard wrote:Power can stage its own murder to rediscover a glimmer of existence and legitimacy.
Jean Baudrillard wrote:Bergson felt the event of the First World War this way. Before it broke out, it appeared both possible and impossible (the similarity with the suspense surrounding the Iraq war is total), and at the same time he experienced a sense of stupefaction at the ease with which such a fearful eventuality could pass from the abstract to the concrete, from the virtual to the real.
We see the same paradox again in the mix of jubilation and terror that characterized, in a more or less unspoken way, the event of 11 September. It is the feeling that seizes us when faced with the occurrence of something that happens without having been possible.
CitronBleu wrote:I try to imagine what one of these men of knowledge from, say, Greek antiquity, were to think were he transported to our epoch and presented with our amazing technological feats in outer-Space.
Would he disassociate his own mythological beliefs with our own? I dare say no.
nonhocapito wrote:I see what you mean, yet the scientific advance is unequivocal. The desire to keep this new reality connected to mythology could have to do with something else: a polemic, active refusal of Christianity and other current beliefs that are seen as anti-scientific.
It is not about belief in ancient myths, rather about toying with them to push today's myths out of the window. As I look back at it, the whole experience of NASA seems to be rooted in a strong, definitive anti-christian stance, whatever its reason and goal (methinks, the ultimate goal being a new, improved control over humanity).
Not accidentally the picture you posted comes from the Russian context, a place where, I think, this anti-Christian energy has lost part of its collective force following the collapse of the Soviet system. It does not do justice to the actual mythological/pagan system of values the whole "Space race" has been immersed in.
CitronBleu wrote:What do you mean by "new reality"?
The whole space age appears as a new modern mythology. I don't see mythology and christianity as in opposition. Christianity is a form of of mythology.
I think many of the astronauts actually had deep Christian beliefs, and if they had to make some lies in order to beat godless communism then so what?
"We have now entered an era in which the only acceptable form of imagery is obtained through both alteration and manipulation.We now expect very little from the core-substance of the photograph / image itself as we now expect almost everything from the digital manipulation of the image "
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