Sunday, September 25, 2016

HT Mockingbird, a Slate piece at Browbeat on how The Iron Giant is not about guns or war but about sin

Also on the film front, finally a confrontational headline from Slate we can all get on board with: “Everyone Misunderstood Brad Bird’s The Iron Giant: It’s Not About Guns. It’s About Sin.” Amen.

Indeed.  Slate has evolved over the last sixteen years into one of those publications with provocative titles that are declarative statements or rhetorical questions of the sort that reminds me of the polemics of ... Christian bloggers. :s

It's still amazing to consider that back in 1999 there was Toy Story 2, South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, Princess Mononoke, and the Iron Giant.

another incubation phase

There's not quite as much writing here at the blog lately but it's not because no writing is being done.  Some of the writing has shown up elsewhere.  Some of the writing will show up here eventually. There's a long-form analytical series that's been taking shape in the last month or so ever since I read Rod Dreher's interview with J. D. Vance about Hillbilly Elegy. I'll refrain from dropping any more hints as to the content and scope of the pending series of posts because the incubation process has just ended a phase.  What's in the egg is probably not yet ready to hatch.

There's other long-term incubations going on for stuff I've been meaning to write about scholarly approaches to 18th centur ymusic vs 19th century understandings of the same.  There's stuff I've been working on about problems I have with Francis Schaeffer's narrative approach vs an actual music history, or history of music. 

I've been meaning for months to discuss guitar sonatas again and get into more specific stuff but there's some secondary literature that I feel beholden to read that I'm not done reading yet. 

For now I'll just say that sonata form can't be considered obsolete if you can make a case that the entire 19th century conceptual framework for discussing sonatas misunderstood and misconstrued sonata as a form rather than as a kind of thought process that continued the developmental economy of the fugue within homophonic rather than polyphonic terms. The implications of deconstructing 19th century assumptions about sonata and fugue can have for the integration of vernacular American styles into 18th century developmental processes seem self-evident to me, but there's a point at which you have to make the case that ragtime and sonata form can be successfully integrated by abandoning stereotypical notions of what sonata "ought" to be in the terms of German idealism from the 19th century through some music itself. There are some experiments that are possible in the arts if the arts are not regarded as a substitute for traditional religion. That experiments with fusions of jazz and 18th century developmental processes that have been presented, rather unfortunately, as actually fixed "forms" have been going on over the last half century on both sides of the Iron Curtain/Cold War divide is something I've been meaning to write about.  But I haven't. 

So there's a lot of what you might call pre-writing going on before the writing that might show up here can take place.