Current Events — April Showers & May Flowers

This topic contains 63 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  Glass 2 years, 10 months ago.

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  • 05 Jul 2012 at 11:56 pm #1687

    Richard L.
    Member

    The wonderful thing about McCarthy’s work is that it contains the recalcitrance for such interpretations. Some of these things may have been conscious, worked out in revision, but most of them were probably just written unconsciously, inspired by McCarthy’s genius or savant or both. I suspect that McCarthy sticks to the human universals and lets his unconscious dreams hold sway–or at least that was the way he used to write. Nowadays, sometimes the magic works, and sometimes it does not.

    The allusions to MOBY DICK and such were consciously written in, but some of those things must have appeared out of the blue–which is to say, inspired from his unconscious synthesis.

    Like Melville with MOBY DICK, McCarthy undoubtedly consciously put a cipher joke or two in BLOOD MERIDIAN. We batted this around no end in the old forum. The blank page which equals the Judge’s weight would have been thrown off if the pages were numbered differently. Perhaps no one is left alive to tell us whether the pagination of BLOOD MERIDIAN was arranged and insisted upon by McCarthy–except McCarthy himself, and thus far he has not been forthcoming.

    Such elaborate mirroring as Chris points out, now, that’s another thing. Chris doesn’t even mention such things as the mirroring of the sky with what happens below to the scalphunting party. Other mirroring also comes to mind, such as the mirror sequence on the opening page of ALL THE PRETTY HORSES.

    Part of this is the reader’s art. It is what makes McCarthy’s work so fascinating to those with the gift for such interpretations. It is the twilight zone, I-hate-to-see-that-evening-sun-go-down syndrome, the synchronicity of a Dolly Parton with a Dalai Lama in a Dali illustration. It’s not the same thing, but our eyes bend the light and blink it in, our ears make it rhyme.


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    • This reply was modified 5 years, 6 months ago by  Richard L..
    06 Jul 2012 at 9:55 am #1689

    Ken
    Member

    Soon to be published for the first time: A Farewell To Arms plus all 47 of Hemingway’s alternate endings, plus other deleted materials from the final version: NY Times: “To Use and Use Not”.

    Looking forward to same for McCarthy’s novels.


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    14 Aug 2012 at 7:00 pm #1794

    aden
    Member

    You have to love Bibi.


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    04 Sep 2012 at 12:27 pm #1845

    Anonymous

    This place is very quiet since the switchover to the highfalutin new webdesign. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this place is a ghost town now. You all can retort with your sophistry proclaiming me a tosspot or ignoramus. What I observe is this, this place and the regular posting it once enjoyed has gone the way of the Do Do bird and the Hallowed Passenger Pigeon.
    A real shame to my mind.

    I have a conspiracy theory, it is this…that in switching over it was the agenda of the President or Honcho of this page – Not Rick Wallach – to cause just such an interruption in communication. Dare I suggest that said decision was based around limiting posts by contributors who were, according to the manifesto on the main page – “extreme layreaders” or “unclean lepers” and not lettered men and women , surely I dare.
    And I don’t buy that jazz about Oswald being the only shooter in Dallas that day either. Perhaps there is even a connection between the two events…


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    04 Sep 2012 at 3:48 pm #1847

    Richard L.
    Member

    Well, I can only speak for myself, and I’m grateful to still be here. We’ve lost so many voices since the Society began, and more all the time. And our boy, Cormac, has changed some since then too. He is no longer poor and obscure; no longer thought to be a complete recluse; no longer a deadbeat dad; no longer so controversial, thanks to the great wealth of critical literature that has grown up around his works, explaining his ideas.

    It’s like the turn-the-page riff at the end of CITIES OF THE PLAIN. He is no longer young and hungry, literally and figuratively–and of course, neither are we. I’m thankful for the Webmaster’s continued indulgence. Otherwise, we’d be like Cormac McCarthy’s fictional characters (as per Jay Ellis): No place for home.


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    04 Sep 2012 at 7:09 pm #1850

    Anonymous

    Grateful for your words Richard. You seem to be the most frequent contributor to these threads. Cheers to you and the Webmaster. Just my thoughts on the matter. No bad thoughts against the Webmaster or the Suzerains but maybe someone would be interested in hearing a non-scholar’s opinion. Probably that’s a silly thought.

    I remember much more activity on the forums post No Country and The Road – the tail end and propulsion into Oprah interview “fame” obviously.

    Cormac has changed but his letters remain.

    One question about CM’s no longer a deadbeat dad …what developments were unearthed about that? Are you speaking to the fact that he has a current son whom he has not walked out on? Understand, I make no moral judgement against Cormac or anyone else for abandoning bad scenes. Hell, I’d deadbeat a dozen crapping rugrat slavelaborers for a bottle of good whiskey and a Buick with a decent engine.

    Respectfully, your response seems a little sad to me. I read it as essentially you saying that Cormac is no longer exciting or worthy of debate because of his financial success and because the scholars have written books about his books that provide something the original texts did not, or rather were not clear about.

    Best,
    SMEV


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    05 Sep 2012 at 2:39 pm #1854

    Richard L.
    Member

    Again I speak only for myself. It is a natural thing. Knowledge satisfies the hunger for it. There is no need to beat down doors searching for answers, as we used to do in this forum. The door stands open at the nearest university library, there in the McCarthy crit-lit section. The bookshop here is filled to the brim with insights.

    Re: Deadbeat Dad

    There was a time when McCarthy admitted in an interview that he had no money to pay for child support for his first son. Jay Ellis quotes the interview and discusses this in NO PLACE FOR HOME.


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    05 Sep 2012 at 8:44 pm #1855

    Anonymous

    Many thanks again Richard. I was not aware of that McCarthy interview or Mr. Ellis’ No Place For Home. I will seek out a copy as soon as possible.


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    06 Sep 2012 at 1:37 am #1856

    cantona
    Member

    Smeaevans: For a very neat account of McCarthy’s journey from culthood to critical canonization I’d recommend reading Senor Wallach’s foreward to David Holloway’s ‘The Late Modernism of Cormac McCarthy’. Why? Well the changing critical reception of McCarthy (whether this was the championing of him as a supreme ‘local colourist’ or the now dominant view that he is a masterful post-structural ironist)is reflected perhaps ( I wasn’t there at the forum’s beginning) in the more dominant ideological positions of the forum itself. I was at a literature conference last year where the keynote speaker said – after a long speech celebrating the presumed supersession of the Marxist paradigm – that “we are all Deleuzians now.’ This desiring machine desired only an end to such smugness.

    There are, thankfully, enough dissenting positions here to keep things lively. Perhaps the silence has something to do with people being a litte exhausted with defending their positions; are now quietly finding a way back out of the cul-de-sac. Changing one’s mind in order to consider different approaches: I know that’s why I shut up from time to time.

    By the way, I’d recommend Holloway’s book in its entirety. Bloody expensive, though.


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    29 Sep 2012 at 5:58 pm #2055

    Ken
    Member

    This week’s NY Times Book Review has a brief Q&A with Michael Chabon:

    You can suggest three books to a literary snob who believes genre fiction has no merit. What’s on the list?

    “The Turn of the Screw.” “Heart of Darkness.” “Blood Meridian.”


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