Monday, February 15, 2010

Eleanor Wilner on the Past

A thought from poet Eleanor Wilner that I have been mulling for several years:

"As we change the past, so we are changed."

(From her late 1990s essay, "Playing the Changes," for which I need of course a more precise citation-- I am not sure from whence it fetched up in my commonplace book.)

A truism...but much more than that, as Wilner explores the nature of history, change, historicity.

Which drives at the heart of narrative, storytelling, the coming-at of the truth of things.

Reminds me of the work of Reinhart Koselleck, Hayden White, Roger Chartier and other historians who have sought the origins of historical phenomena in terms of rhetorical strategy.

Borges's "Circular Ruins." The Sun Stone by Paz.

Battlestar Galactica.

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