In prison or in the tekkes, the rebetes did not have the luxury of a small orchestra. In prison this would have been forbidden, and in the tekkes it would have attracted the unwanted attention of the police.
As a Roman citizen I decided to notify the civil power and rescue myself from my dreadful predicament by appealing to the Emperor....I managed to shout 'O' loudly and distinctly, but that was all; I was unable to pronounce the word 'Caesar'. My discordant bray so annoyed the bandits that they whacked and poked at my miserable hide until it felt hardly fit even to make one of those leather sieves for bolting corn.
Somatic jolts and intellectual stability -- two conflicting interpretations, to be sure, but perhaps also two extremes on the continuum of mid-eighteenth-century culture and aesthetics. But above all, it is in the specific formulation of violently clashing sounds as antidotes to ennui, in the perceived ability of dissonance to jolt bodies and at the same time keep in check the effects of such violence through aestheticization, that mid-eighteenth-century concepts of auditory perception transcended the obsolete aesthetics of affect and began to articulate a concept of the listener as an ego.
“I should have thought,” said Murphy, “that the radiator was secondary to the gas.”
He had brought the radiator to the garret, set it down on the floor and stood back to imagine it lit. Rusty, dusty, derelict, the coils of asbestos falling to pieces, it seemed to defy ignition. He went dismally away to look for gas.
He seemed illuminated by his discovery, but undecided: was he going to transform it into uncontrollable laughter, or into oratorical procedures?
"What an idiot I am!" said he, choosing the second course.
This seems a fairly plausible view of the status of the arts and sciences in human society. The occurrence of a supply independent of Corpus demands, its possibility or presence, is a question that the social limitations of our critical language prevent us from raising with any degree of humane intelligibility.
(And what is perfect English?) Its strange lurches of idiom and vocabulary remind us, as "A"-18 did, that dictionaries are poor guides to a language. "Overcome" in "have not / overcome the / age of / 35...." (p. 412) probably seemed a logical synonym for "attained."
Like a tropical storm,
I, too, may one day become "better organized."
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Apuleius, tr. Robert Graves. The Transformations of Lucius Otherwise Known as The Golden Ass. NYC, Farrar Straus & Giroux, 1984.
Erlmann, Veit. Reason and Resonance: A History of Modern Aurality. NYC, Zone Books, 2010.
Beckett, Samuel. The Grove Centenary Edition: Volume 1: Novels. NYC, Grove Press, 2006.
Queneau, Raymond, tr. Barbara Wright. The Sunday of Life. NYC, New Directions, 1977.
Riding, Laura, ed. Lisa Samuels. Anarchism Is Not Enough. Berkeley, University of California Press, 2001.
Ahearn, Barry. Zukofsky's "A": An Introduction. Berkeley, University of California Press, 1983.
Davis, Lydia. The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis. NYC, Farrar Straus & Giroux, 2009.