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Lhoffman
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« Reply #420 on: August 26, 2007, 02:15:57 AM »

Quote
Then there is a special feature on “Magic and Myth: The Meaning of Carnivàle”—a half-hour documentary exploring the apocalyptic writing and mythology behind the show. Interviews with the creator, executive producer, and writers and directors of the show to get their take on the magic realism, as well as independent contributors who have examined the show's characters and the archetypal roles they represent.

Thanks for the reminder.  I think I'm going to have another look at those special features. 
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pugetopolis
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« Reply #421 on: August 26, 2007, 05:43:02 AM »


Question:  Is the element of the fantastic or miraculous intrinsic to the concept of magical realism? 
 

Magic realism to me is a kind of storytelling.

How to tell a magic realism story—that’s a story in itself.

It’s easier to show and tell—than theorize about it.

It’s not Carnivàle special effects like the Dust Storm or Professor Lodz’s mind-reading tricks.

It’s something else—it’s hard to explain…

Let me give you an example:

Message #593 is a string of Absalom, Absalom quotes .

They're about the Quentin Compson-Shreve McCannon narrative.

There in their Harvard dormitory room—delving back into the Sutpen Dynasty.

Quentin and Shreve discussing the relationship between Henry Sutpen and Charles Bon...

http://forums.escapefromelba.com/index.php/topic,34.msg26991.html#msg26991

The Quentin-Shreve relationship makes the storytelling real.

The dialog = the frame.

It makes the story real, believable, creditable and indistinguishable from what’s being told.

I did a magical realism spin on these quotes.

I used them to tell a new story.

Absalom Absalom—in a new way.

We’ve been doing this over in the Creative Writing forum.

Reconstructing Absalom along the lines of the Parton Dynasty suggested by Desdemona and Barton.

The magic realism involved is morphing these quotes into a new storyline.

About the Parton Family, Gordon Snopes and Jehosephat Parton.

Jehosephat = pinhead child idiot = Benjy in The Sound and the Fury.

Gordon Snopes = Flem Snopes etc.

It's called Go Down Jehosephat.




« Last Edit: September 02, 2007, 10:22:09 PM by pugetopolis » Logged

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« Reply #422 on: August 26, 2007, 05:51:14 AM »



Go Down Jehosephat

“And now,” Gordon said, “we’re going to talk about money.”

Young Jehosephat was learning from Gordon how to lounge around a bedroom in a gown and slippers like women wore—with the faint though unmistakable effluvium of perfume like women wore— smoking a cigar almost like a woman might smoke—with an air of indolent and lethal assurance…

Jehosephat was becoming a kept boy—there in cosmopolitan New Orleans. Amidst the Florentine lamps and gilded toilet seats and tufted mirrors…

Sipping champagne in octoroon boudoirs…aping Gordon’s clothing, carriage, speech and all…

The cosmopolitan Jehosephat, lounging in one of the silk robes the like of which he’d never seen before and believed that only women wore…

Gordon watched young Jehosephat blush fiery red yet still face him, still looking him straight in the eye while he fumbled, groped, blurted with abrupt complete irrelevance: “NYUH-NYUH-NYUHHHHHHHHH!!!”

“Well, well…” Gordon said to himself. “This young pinhead clodhopper numbskull is worth plenty. I’m going to get rich off him.”

And who’s to say he couldn’t—the possibility of lust in the Big Easy was boundless. Anybody who’s been to New Orleans—knows how much the vain evanescence of the fleshly encounter is worth…

Gordon knew what it was worth in New Orleans—but he knew how much it was worth in Memphis too…

Gordon looked at Jehosephat in bed and thought—this little Pinhead stud has my skull, my brow, my sockets, the same shape and angle of my jaw and chin—and yet there is no thinking in there—the kid can’t see in my face what I see in his…

And it was true—young Jehosephat was even more a child idiot than Benjy Compson was back in Mississippi—standing there nude in front of Gordon in their luxurious apartment in the French Quarter—a long list of avid admirers lined up to appreciate this latest young primitive discovery from the backwoods.

Young Jehosephat’s pinhead existence was soon in demand there in Sin city—decadent sophisticates were totally obsessed with such newly discovered and excruciatingly reptilian sexuality—they loved young dumb Alabama manhood—obscured totally by that primitive mindlessness whose admixing was necessary in order that the kid could give them what they wanted—shaped out of that blind chancy darkness which we call the Okefenokee Swamp…

There—there—at any moment, second, Jehosephat could evoke it—the primeval prehistoric past that lurks in every man—the ultimate whitetrash transubstantiation only swamp consciousness can incite in wicked hearts—all that cheesy intensity and dreadful zoology— stripping away any thin veneer of civilization that the wicked may have still possessed—this young pinhead hustler who never missed a beat—from the shadowy depths the absence his spirit’s posthumeity never escaping…”

That’s what Gordon Snopes wanted—he wanted Jehosephat stupid forever—he didn’t want the kid to acknowledge anything—he wanted him to understand nothing—the sooner the better just as quickly as possible—he didn’t want the kid to expect anything—all he wanted the kid to be was himself—like he found him back in Alabama—with just a fine touch here and there for the rich clientele—like a bath now and then—some fine clothes—a well-oiled fancy coiffure—the looks of a young man about town—but once the clothes come off and the lights go down low—that’s when Gordon wanted the real Jehosephat to come out—the ultimate shockingly gauche Swamp Creature…

Gordon looked into the face of the boy whose father could just as well have been a gnarly old cypress stump—oozing, overflowing with Okefenokee sensuality and rude swamp lust—no shyness, no politeness, just hot communicated flesh that speech would have been too slow even to impede—the most gawdawful throbbing Alabama animalesque thing one could imagine…

Gordon watched Jehosephat and listened to the kid— saying to himself “It’s because I’m so smart and such a good businessman that I’m going to do what I’m going to do—I’m going to make this Jehosephat even more undecided about who he is than he is already—and even more knowing about his instinctual subhuman Okefenokee you-know-what . Even if I told him now what I’m going to do—he wouldn’t understand it. But that’s not enough—I want him to understand absolutely nothing at all—I want him brain-dead dumb.

““NYUH-NYUH-NYUHHHHHHHHH!!!”

“That’s the way, kid” Gordon said.

It will happen now. It will happen my way—he’s young, dumb and full of squirrel ice cream—and he’s gonna stay that way—like a deep-down ripe oil well pumping Alabama crude—I’ll get rich…

And so Jehosephat spent six months there in New Orleans—lorded over and pimped by the esoteric, the sybarite, the steel blade in the silken tessellated sheath while Gordon hauled in the big bucks from the  French Quarter…

So that Jehosephat became as object of art—the mold and mirror of pure young animality and fashion. Then Gordon disappeared, taking Jehosephat with him—they took the Delta Queen up to Memphis to do what rich Delta Bourbons did so well. Live it up…all the way.

Then once the frozen December ruts of Christmas Eve appeared—the two vagabonds showed up back at the Parton Plantation. The two of them—except something had changed. Jehosephat must have now understood with complete despair the secret of his whole affair with Gordon—from the first instinctive moment when they met six months ago.

Gordon had failed—the kid was getting smarter. He could even drive a car now and mix martinis for wealthy guests—so that it was a different twosome who rode in the fast sleek Cadillac through the night and across the bright frosty North Alabama Christmas day.

Gordon knew but still didn’t believe—the Alabama-born boy of the Parton clan had changed. Jehosephat was still an Okefenokee pinhead—but something else had happened…

The blue winding wood smoke hanging above the plastered chimney of the Parton Plantation—they were far from the River and New Orleans. The gimpy hair-lipped youth he’d taken under his wing—the child-idiot who aped him only months ago was more than just a dumb naked ape anymore…

Two embattled spirits—struggled inside Jehosephat now. The spirit of the swamp and the spirit of the Big Easy. There was no peace between these two embattled spirits—one ancient and chthonic like an alligator gar gliding through the cypress swamp. And the other an incontrovertible cosmopolitan craving for Carnivàle and freedom.

Gordon took Jehosephat to see a doctor—perhaps a lobotomy would help. The doctor looked at Gordon and said, “Ain’t he enough for you? Why do you want less of him?”

The Parton family couldn’t believe it—Jehosephat was actually a pretty goodlooking young man now. He didn’t say “Nyuh” anymore—he didn’t have that glazed stupid look in his eyes.

“Jaysus, just look at you,” said Aunt Mildred. “A gentleman.”

Jehosephat didn’t retreat from people anymore—he could even play Poker, Pinochle and Bridge. It was as if he lived in a state of deliberate flagellant exaltation—his physical deformity transmogrified into the spirit of a young man now.

No matter how much Gordon tried—he found it impossible to evoke that condemned and excommunicated Okefenokee shade to tell him in person that everything was all right. Surely it was just a lapse of decadent teenage frivolity—sooner or later Jehosephat’s glands would assert themselves—and he could be had again in time for another lucrative Mardi Gras.

The two faced one another in the living room of the Parton home—Jehosephat the Southern moron—the morose and delicate offspring of swamp, rain and steamy heat. And Gordon Snopes—worried like all Snopes about his investment.

“There’s no escape,” Gordon said. “Your pinhead fate is part of you—like your bones and flesh and memory.”

“That old mindless sentient undreaming meat that doesn’t even know any difference between despair and victory—it’s still you and it won’t ever go away…”

Gordon wanted to keep believing that Pinheads were sometimes created for the sole purpose of selling secret private endowments—to rich Delta Bourbon aristocrats and decadent French Quarter queens who needed it…

Jehosephat could have spoken but he didn’t.. There was a quality of delicacy about Jehosephat now—even at sixteen in the middle of the last faint echo of his Alabama adolescence…”

“C’mon now,” Gordon said. “It’s time we left for Mardi Gras now,”

But Jehosephat didn’t move beneath the gripping hands—he sat  motionless in the parlor. A faint fixed grimace on his face—yet his breath gentler than that first breath when the pine branches begin to move a little…

“I don’t know,” Jehosephat said.

“You don’t know! You don’t know? You don’t know nothing, kid!!!” Gordon shouted with a mean look.

“I don’t know,” Jehosephat said.

It was then that Gordon realized the awful truth—he’d lost his pinhead goldmine…
« Last Edit: September 02, 2007, 10:22:53 PM by pugetopolis » Logged

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martinbeck3
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« Reply #423 on: August 26, 2007, 01:54:18 PM »

Theroux´Millroy the Magician.An example of a USAmerican novelist writing magic-realism which is now considered by some SouthAm leftist critics like 3rd. world stereotyping. 
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« Reply #424 on: August 26, 2007, 01:58:13 PM »

Ahhhhh....and now it seems I have lost my book!  But, after a sleepless night reconstructing the thing in my head, I'll wing it and anyone who cares to, feel free to jump in with corrections.  Hopefully I'll find it sometime time today as there are a few things I want to re-check.

I see what you're getting at regarding Absalom and magical realism....and I may just agree (although I think I prefer the idea of AA as a meditation on memory, going along with The Sound and the Fury as a meditation on time).  There are several aspects that would place it in the realm of magical realism.  

Thomas Sutpen, at the beginning of it all, is painted as near mythic.  He comes into town, having mysteriously acquired his land.  Brings along a band of twenty slaves....who knows from where....and a FRENCH architect bound to him by who knows what.  He tears (I believe the phrase Miss Rosa used was "tore violently a plantation") Sutpen's Hundred from the earth itself.  His life is guided by destiny or "design."   Just when he seems to be well on his way to achieving the "design," landed, married to a respectable woman, son, daughter, the gods roll the dice.

Then there is the mythical kingdom of Yoknapatawpha County, mapped by William Faulkner, Sole Owner and Proprietor.  Area 2400 Sq. Mi., Pop, Whites 6298 Negroes 9313.

Add to that the concept of the South as constructed by Faulkner through Shreve and Quentin.  Shreve asks Quentin to tell about the South, what it's like, what do they do there.....Why they live at all.  Quentin answers along the vein of "You can't understand it.  You would have to be born there,"  and  gives Shreve the story of Thomas Sutpen...a man who (like the South) dreamed high and failed grandly.  

The overarching idea behind the book would match ideas found in magical realism that altered reality is more real and reveals deeper truths than the original reality, and that the past exists only as the present, and is never actually the past.   True reality and true past exist only in perspective.
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« Reply #425 on: August 26, 2007, 02:05:08 PM »

Martinbeck...Theroux is one of those authors I've been meaning to read, but haven't yet.   When you read Marquez or Borges, though, does it seem a stereotype? 

Faulkner's South seems stereotyped, but when I come across this sort of writing, the big question for me is "Why."  What would the book have to tell us if it had been presented in another fashion? 

It occurred to me that the earliest example of magical realism I've seen is to be found in the book of Job, wherein an innocent man going about his business is turned into a plaything of the gods.

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« Reply #426 on: August 26, 2007, 02:07:55 PM »

JohnR...I'm reading Raintree County and enjoying it very much.  Thanks for the great suggestion!
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martinbeck3
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« Reply #427 on: August 26, 2007, 02:15:26 PM »

HOFFMAN, no way! If I read Isabel Allende and other minor writers it feels like Danielle Steele though.
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« Reply #428 on: August 26, 2007, 02:17:19 PM »

BTW, don´t miss Theroux. Millroy is my favourite.
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pugetopolis
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« Reply #429 on: August 26, 2007, 04:44:26 PM »

An example of a USAmerican novelist writing magic-realism which is now considered by some SouthAm leftist critics like 3rd. world stereotyping. 



Well, Hollywood ain’t that bad, I suppose.

I get to clean up Raymond Chandler’s The Big Sleep.

I get to go hog-hunting with Nathanael West on Catalina Island.

I get to get away from Estelle for awhile.

I get to date beautiful Meta Carpenter.

The booze ain’t bad either—better than the corn back home.

What more can a man want…dontchaknow.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2007, 10:23:32 PM by pugetopolis » Logged

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« Reply #430 on: August 27, 2007, 09:35:38 PM »

Puget,

Why is it that as I roam through the forums, I see the same post from you, over and over. Do you not realize you have posted it once? Or do you want to cram it down our throats? I, for one, do not bother if the first line or two are unintesting. I just scroll down and look for something interesting. But, it is rather annoying to see the same post repeated, wasting band space that is being provided to us free of cost.

Pick an appropriate forum for what you want to say, and leave it at one post.
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Lhoffman
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« Reply #431 on: August 27, 2007, 10:09:30 PM »

I don't know much about band width usage, but now I find myself wondering, if there truly is a "shortage" or danger of overuse, ought any of us to be using it up in these forums? 

I have noticed that many Japanese artists have posted notices on their works, that when you try to post them, they will only link to the original.  The reason?  Saving bandwidth. 

So now I wonder....if art is not important enough to overuse bandwidth on, is it ethical for us to use it to participate in forum chattiness? 
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« Reply #432 on: August 27, 2007, 11:22:24 PM »


Pick an appropriate forum for what you want to say, and leave it at one post.

Some forums aren't visited as frequently as others, Weezo.

The Poetry Forum and the Gay Rights Forum don't get the same attention as Meandering or Creative Writing.

The Ashbery message I posted was a Gay Rights Fourm message basically.

Not everybody is like you -- curious enough to read all the Forums.

That's why I posted the Ashbery message in Meandering and elsewhere.

The same with poetry. Only a few go there. Madame Mad and a few others.

Therefore, I posted the "Miss Ashbery" poem in Meandering and Fiction so people who might miss it would see it.

I'm sorry if I've offended you...or irritated you. I seem to do that with quite a few people.

Bandwidth and boredom...definitely two things at the top of my Agenda.  Cool


« Last Edit: September 02, 2007, 10:18:33 PM by pugetopolis » Logged

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« Reply #433 on: August 28, 2007, 02:10:32 AM »

I deleted the Ashbery messages in Fiction and SA Lit.

I'm leaving them up elsewhere.  Smiley
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« Reply #434 on: August 28, 2007, 10:26:24 PM »

I think it's something like penis envy
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