Hello Cruel World
Monday, January 19, 2009
History continues

From Making Light:
The true history of the Bush years
nielsenhayden.com/ makinglight/ archives/ 010952.html
"There will be histories written about the Bush administration. They’ll be privy to information we don’t have yet, because the future is like that. On the other hand, we have our own privileged knowledge: We know how the story looked like to people who didn’t know how it was going to come out.

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Saturday, January 03, 2009
Influence & plagiarism: myths, legends, folk stories, oral history, epics, sagas, literature, &c.
I think I've mentioned my theory/feeling about myths & folk stories & such traditions being mostly what we'd now call 'fanfic'. Here are two people dealing with some of the ideas in that. (Most of Jonathon's Harper's article isn't so sesquipedalian <ahem>)
The ecstasy of influence: A plagiarism,
by Jonathan Lethem
Harper's Magazine, February 2007
www.harpers.org/ archive/ 2007/ 02/ 0081387
consider the remarkable series of “plagiarisms” that links Ovid's “Pyramus and Thisbe” with Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and Leonard Bernstein's West Side Story, or Shakespeare's description of Cleopatra, copied nearly verbatim from Plutarch's life of Mark Antony and also later nicked by T. S. Eliot for The Waste Land. If these are examples of plagiarism, then we want more plagiarism.

Most artists are brought to their vocation when their own nascent gifts are awakened by the work of a master. That is to say, most artists are converted to art by art itself. Finding one's voice isn't just an emptying and purifying oneself of the words of others but an adopting and embracing of filiations, communities, and discourses. Inspiration could be called inhaling the memory of an act never experienced. Invention, it must be humbly admitted, does not consist in creating out of void but out of chaos. Any artist knows these truths, no matter how deeply he or she submerges that knowing.
Bellatrys at Nothing New Under the Sun started discussing a set of examples at the turn of 2008/2009 with the post
A Quest that begins in a Tavern...

bellatrys.livejournal.com/ 413660.html [longish description cut] … is best described as:
a) an example of "PC gone mad™" in the fantasy genre today;

b) the sort of insane mish-mash of cliches, anachronisms, mythology rip-offs and proper nouns improperly used that gives gaming a bad name;

c) taken directly from an internationally-bestselling work of serio-comic epic fantasy itself derived from earlier popular fantasy tales, which the author reworked and polished for decades, that was first published under the d'Estes in Renaissance Italy and ripped off subsequently by everybody from Edmund Spenser to Georg Friedrich Händel.
and continues with two more entries so far, with quite a bit of interesting discussion in the comments to them all.

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 / . Lives in Australia/New South Wales/Sydney, speaks English. Eye color is hazel. I am what my mother calls unique. My interests are photography, reading, natural history/land use, town planning, sustainability.

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Australia, New South Wales, Sydney, English, photography, reading, natural history, land use, town planning, sustainability.