Monday, July 18, 2011

Reading a Little bit of Robert Penn Warren

The novelist looks at the world and he sees something big there and grand. And there is something important, too, about economics, in the way this world turns 'round. At least there is to us. We feel our concept of "economics." Many words have been written about economics. Meanwhile the nation amasses what former Sec. of State Condoleeza Ricey-Dicey calls "treasure." This country, however, also: oddly claims that this treasure is amassed only to be held in private hands.
     The novelist sees a story there. And it is going to take at least 300 or 500 pages, you know, because all the details are so rich.

Everything we see or feel or touch we believe in. We do not feel the world is going to crumble at our fingers. It is not allowed to crumble in our fingers. It has to be there. For another day.
     And that day will be chronicled, in New York, or, in the U.S.A. Today.
The first section of the newspaper is national and world news. Later there will be the sports, the only section normal persons care about, and then something usually called the business section or the financial pages, which businessmen mostly read.
     The first section is there for the politicians because, after all, we need to know why we vote sometimes. The newspaper really is a creation of the elite classes, for they need to know we have a genuine world. And for this they create the/a newspaper.
     It also makes for a good front corporation, for example in Chicago, for other goods such as the local baseball team (The Cubs), or, the television station (WGN). All of that is owned by the Tribune corporation. Forgive me for not using a capital "C."
     And, it makes for a grand building --- so-called "Tribune Tower," that beautifies the place on the lake where the river breaks into the city and canyons of buildings are there but the Tribune building does not quite break my heart the way the Wrigley building across the street, does. The Wrigley building is white, and even more yummy, like chewing gum.
     And the evidence of our senses is  that this world is real. What binds it together does not crumble, and must not.
     In a grand effort at novelizing, Robert Penn Warren's "World Enough and Time", it is the yellowed newspaper, its scraps "huddled" together like  November leaves or else some letters, "also yellow", that are "bound in neat bundles" with the tape so "stiffened and tired" that it parts "almost unresistingly at your touch."
     It is the tape that crumbles not the newspaper -- I don't know that it makes a difference. We may define a metaphor as both a physical and a verbal gesture, but always created with words. Why did this writer choose the metaphor that invokes, naturally with both materiality and idea, that what binds together can disintegrate? I'm not saying that Robert Penn Warren intended to say just that, and he still had another 511 pages to write, but he used a metaphor for something crumbling. Is something crumbling? I do not know but he believed in the world and he wanted to knit together a novel about it.

     Capitalism has to hold together.

     Each piece cannot be conceived as totally independent or individualist.

     What is capitalism? Well, this is a question I am usually always thinking about and capitalism seems a kind of social network, and one that functions despite anything that anyone says about it.
     But how does capitalism take care of human needs?
     Well, as for that ---
     It does not do so independently. It needs to be guided, and regulated. That is not a wrong idea, and there is not something bad or evil about it.

                                               THE END

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