liv: alternating calligraphed and modern letters (letters)
[personal profile] liv
No real theme, just people being interesting:

  • [personal profile] jack posted something really thinky about formal logic and common sense.

  • [personal profile] sovay posted a really interesting review of a 1944 film, There are a lot worse things in this world than losing one's beauty. The film involves a Jewish character losing his sight as a result of being tortured by the Nazis, and [personal profile] sovay discusses how awful it is that this is mostly portrayed as back story and support for the non-Jewish, non-disabled heroine's emotional arc. But at the same time it's a really interesting analysis of a film which directly references the Nazi genocide in 1944, while it was still ongoing. Some really interesting discussion in the comments on LJ side about very early media portrayals of the Holocaust.

  • [personal profile] rachelmanija is posting a lot of really fascinating Hamilton meta lately. In the comments to one of her recent posts, [personal profile] brainwane linked to this really thoughtful, profound analysis of Iago in Shakespeare's Othello by Max Gladstone: What the f*ck, Iago?

(no subject)

Date: 2016-03-03 01:43 pm (UTC)
jack: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jack
Ooh, you read my post. I think I need to iterate on it some more, I'd intended it to be pretty straightforward, but I don't think it came across that way.

What the f*ck, Iago?

Date: 2016-03-03 02:03 pm (UTC)
jack: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jack
That's really interesting. It feels like both explanations "he was too proud of his omniscience and resented the world for not appreciating him and became consumed with jealousy at the slightest provocation" and "he became consumed with jealousy at the slightest provocation, and wanted promotion, and for all the people to fancy him, and hence kept seizing justifications for why he deserved them" could be equally said to be valid, they sort of complement each other.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-03-03 02:44 pm (UTC)
seekingferret: Word balloon says "So I said to the guy: you never read the book yet you go online and talk about it as if--" (Default)
From: [personal profile] seekingferret
The Iago post is fascinating, and does a better job of explaining Iago than I've ever seen, but I still find Iago and Othello somewhat dissatisfying because Gladstone still doesn't offer a sufficient exploration of why, as he notes "Reading Shakespeare one starts to feel that, even if the systematic mind is lonely and less romantic, it’s also strictly better." The plot of Othello is on rails. Iago declares that something is going to happen and then it happens exactly as he says it will. Iago's systematic mind is presented with no meaningful obstacles.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-03-03 03:40 pm (UTC)
rysmiel: (Default)
From: [personal profile] rysmiel
I have a kind of half-formed response to that post of Max's, about Iago and Prince Hal/Henry V, because it seems to me that the best performances I have seen of either have been as people who do not really understand their own internal workings at all but are compelled by them. (The Kate scene at the end of Henry V never made a blind bit of sense to me until I saw Robert Hardy and Judi Dench in Age of Kings in which Hal is played as an instinctive gameplayer who can't actually stop even when it would be beneficial to him to do so.) And given that Shakespeare is kind of on a cusp between "humans always have the same fixed character and it just becomes more clearly visible as circumstances change" and "humans start off as blank slates and character is formed by experience" as philosophical positions, that might have been a thing he did deliberately.

I still think the absolute most sense it is possible to make of Othello is to regard Desdemona's handkerchief as behaving like the One Ring, in exaggerating people's existing character traits to their doom, but that may just be my own emotional wiring balking at people behaving in such otherwise incomprehensible ways.
Edited Date: 2016-03-03 03:41 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2016-03-03 04:21 pm (UTC)
jack: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jack
people who do not really understand their own internal workings at all but are compelled by them

Maybe that applies to most people, but those are people whose default behaviour is baroque it's a lot more evident when they get caught up in it? As opposed to someone who's default is a simpler emotion, where one mgiht not examine it.

regard Desdemona's handkerchief as behaving like the One Ring, in exaggerating people's existing character traits to their doom

That makes a lot of sense :)

(no subject)

Date: 2016-03-03 08:22 pm (UTC)
rysmiel: (Default)
From: [personal profile] rysmiel
people who do not really understand their own internal workings at all but are compelled by them

Maybe that applies to most people, but those are people whose default behaviour is baroque it's a lot more evident when they get caught up in it?


People in general or people in Shakespeare ?

The thing that I think Hal and Iago may have in common is being very smart in some directions of emotional intelligence when applying them to other people (Iago destructively, Hal more ambiguously) and I do not have the problem [personal profile] seekingferret alludes to above with everything working out as Iago expects because I have seen how well people with really good emotional intelligence can predict or direct the behavior of others on similar scales. Iago iirc explicitly refuses to turn that on himself at the end of the play. Hal as somebody lacking in ability to do that is to my mind an interesting interpretation.

regard Desdemona's handkerchief as behaving like the One Ring, in exaggerating people's existing character traits to their doom

That makes a lot of sense :)


Strawberry-spotted hankywraiths would make a great group costume, but way too few people would get it.

Soundbite

Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

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