thissideofthetruth

NOT THE OTHER

Tag: tragedy

A Night To Remember

Titanic

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Hamlet

Hamlet

“Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rises at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? Your gambols? Your songs? Your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a roar?”

(Hamlet, V.i)

The Myth

Camus outlines the legend of Sisyphus who defied the gods and put Death in chains so that no human needed to die. When Death was eventually liberated and it came time for Sisyphus himself to die, he concocted a deceit which let him escape from the underworld. Finally captured, the gods decided on his punishment: for all eternity, he would have to push a rock up a mountain; upon reaching the top, the rock would roll down again leaving Sisyphus to start over. Camus sees Sisyphus as the absurd hero who lives life to the fullest, hates death and is condemned to a meaningless task.

Camus presents Sisyphus’s ceaseless and pointless toil as a metaphor for modern lives spent working at futile jobs in factories and offices. “The workman of today works every day in his life at the same tasks, and this fate is no less absurd. But it is tragic only at the rare moments when it becomes conscious.”

Camus is interested in Sisyphus’ thoughts when marching down the mountain, to start anew. This is the truly tragic moment, when the hero becomes conscious of his wretched condition. He does not have hope, but “[t]here is no fate that cannot be surmounted by scorn.” Acknowledging the truth will conquer it; Sisyphus, just like the absurd man, keeps pushing. Camus claims that when Sisyphus acknowledges the futility of his task and the certainty of his fate, he is freed to realize the absurdity of his situation and to reach a state of contented acceptance. With a nod to the similarly cursed Greek hero Oedipus, Camus concludes that “all is well,” indeed, that “[o]ne must imagine Sisyphus happy.”

“The only con…

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“The only condition of fighting for the right to create is faith in your own vocation, readiness to serve, and refusal to compromise.”

“Always with huge gratitude and pleasure I remember the films of Sergei Parajanov which I love very much. His way of thinking, his paradoxical, poetical . . . ability to love the beauty and the ability to be absolutely free within his own vision.”

“Art could be said to be a symbol of the universe, being linked with that absolute spiritual truth which is hidden from us in our positivistic, pragmatic activities.”

“For the first time in the history of the arts, in the history of culture, man found the means to take an impression of time…That is the sense in which the Lumiere brothers were the first to contain the seed of a new aesthetic principle. But immediately afterwards, cinema turned aside from art, forced down the path that was the safest from the point of view of philistine interest and profit”.

“I reject the principles of “montage cinema” because they do not allow the film to continue beyond the edges of the screen: they do not allow the audience to bring personal experience to bear on what is in front of them on-screen”

“Devoid of spirituality, art carries its own tragedy within it…..The true artist always serves immortality, striving to immortalise the world and the man within the world”.

“Art must transcend as well as observe”.

“A work becomes dated as a result of the conscious effort to be expressive and contemporary”.

“I think that one of the saddest aspects of our time is the total destruction of people’s awareness of all that goes with a conscious sense of the beautiful. Modern mass culture, aimed at the “consumer”, the civilisation of prosthetics, is crippling people’s souls, setting up barriers between man and the crucial questions of his existence, his consciousness of himself as a spiritual being.”

“The aim of art is to prepare a person for death”.

Andrie Tarkovsky (April 4, 1932 – December 29, 1986)

Punishment Park. Movie Poster.

Punishment Park. Movie Poster.

Life. Death at Kent University. 1970.

Life. Death at Kent University. 1970.