Monday, May 18, 2009

Fictional input

I've stumbled across a bunch of really interesting stuff, beginning with the online blog/journal OnFiction. Not all up my alley, but...

I enjoyed the entries (1 and 2) by on dérives and psychogeography as exercises in geographic freeing-from-preconception. Or something. Still not clear what the things are for, but it feels like they relate to my earlier discussions of pilgrimage as a possible metaphor for a modern performative cartography:

However much these mechanisms may be associated with a particular way of exploring places, they are really merely the training wheels of psychogeography: tools to break the habits of everyday automatic interactions with place and perceptions of place as real and given. Disrupting such habits leaves mental resources for more exploratory stances toward the environment, in which explorers tune in to the behaviors or emotions that the situation and setting most afford.

Also enjoyed Keith Oakley's essay on art, which in turn referenced a really interesting (and obvious, in a good way) article in Greater Good magazine, on, essentially, the functional benefits of fiction. This in a way turns me back full circle to things I was reading 20 years ago about children's literature and the "uses of enchantment," to use Bruno Bettelheim's phrase. I ought to go back an read Jane Yolen's Touch Magic, Bettelheim, and some other stuff I have sitting on a shelf downstairs...

So much to learn, so little time.

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