Thursday, January 27, 2005

Today's Fight: Bird vs. Tree

Assyriologist Jean Bottéro delves deeply into the emergence of writing, sifting through the numerous fragments of texts to understand how writing structured thought and allowed for complex scholarship to emerge. Among the inventories, school books, official communications and literary myths are disputations, a device used to explore the essence of things:
[T]wo objects that were clearly taken as the prototypes and the representatives of their species and that were of similar sort and were given a human personality and [confronted each other in a literary tournament]. By turns each of them presented its own qualities, advantages, and prerogatives until one of them was declared the winner ... behind the mental games and the endemic passion of the ‘duel of prestige’ there lies a real analysis of the objects presented.


At 2:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...



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