I feel like this blog is under metamorphosis. Not only a place where I lay my thoughts to rest, but a place where ideas die, become obselete.
“Like Clavius Earbrass, she often sat in front of the keys, tapping out eloquent sentences that were completely devoid of meaning or context. She rubbed her right wrist in painful resentment. Perhaps this business wasn’t a good idea after all.
“That’s okay,” she said. “I’ll fashioning myself as a George Gissing of the noughties; perhaps we are ready for a second derivation?”
Literary fiction boils down to an association of ideas, grand and minute, esoteric, avante garde, classical. Will Self’s essay, Kafka’s Wound, is a kaleidoscopic multimedia frenzy of this sort of stuff. Self ravishes ideas like pyranas in a bathful of baby goats, a metaphor which I am sure he intended me to envisage.
But gone are the days when one must toil away under the glowing green array of banker’s lamps in order to fathom whether Kafka’s wife really did make him an egg sandwich for lunch on that cold January morning in 1914. What did that sandwich stand for, anyway? Google, if not Amazon, has many, if not all, of the answers to this and other burning questions.
Where does this leave the imagination? Perhaps it is a more treasured thing now. I made up the thing about Kafka’s wife by the way (Kafka famously hated the marriage of two slices of bread, deeming it “unholy” in his treatise on Primordial Degustation.)