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Bakker LVIII HITB: A Literalist Interpretation (Spoilers for all books)


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22 hours ago, larrytheimp said:

If you're really bored, the old threads on this board from 2010-2016 (and probably earlier) have some really good discussion speculation buried in them but there's also probably a lot of nonsense.  You'd also be looking at a lot of spoilers for The Judging Eye and White Luck Warrior.  There was a bunch of really cool riffing on math, philosophy, gnosticism, the metaphysics of Earwa, and a bunch of crackpot ideas, some of which were cooler than what actually happened in the books.  

SOME? :P

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10 hours ago, Rhom said:

Dammit... this thread has me distracted even when reading random sports tweets...

The Logos is the beginning and the end!

Truth Shines

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12 hours ago, Darzin said:

The thing about the Second Apacalypse is it was so close to being amazing 10/10 fantasy. If Bakker had an editor for the last bit and not been well Bakker things could have ended up much better than they did. 

Yes, other than the plot, characterization, dialog and ending he fuckin NAILED it

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  • 3 months later...

I think this is why the last two books were a bit of a disappointment around here. There was so much read into nuances that weren’t actually there.

that's part of the experience of serial publication--the production of secondary commentary far outweighs the production of primary installments--because so much of this commentary is competitively predictive, almost all of it is 'false' when read against the primary materials, though obviously these secondary fictions have an existence that runs parallel to the primary continuity but need not be considered inferior or extinguished simply because they have not been anointed with auctoritas or lack the commercial imprint.  we might consider the implications of this sort of monologic imperative that not at all insignificantly binds together theoretically untenable writerly authoritarianism with intellectual property rights when examining how the text's absences somehow overwrite the robust creativity that occurred here in between installments. this means that the nuances are there to the extent that readers created those significances--that the official narrative didn't follow up on those nuances may or may not be a weakness.

that said, i felt appropriately crushed by the second series finale--this was foreseeable: it is in the name of the series, after all. am very likely still not recovered from it. this is also appropriate and foreseeable.  

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12 hours ago, sologdin said:

this means that the nuances are there to the extent that readers created those significances--that the official narrative didn't follow up on those nuances may or may not be a weakness.

There is no outside-text, right?  If I follow where you are going, that is.

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46 minutes ago, sologdin said:

less derrida than iser or bakhtin.

Ah, ok, was not familiar (I'm still looking more into Hegel than anything else, personally), but a quick look seems to clear up what you seem to have been getting at.  I think I'd generally agree, even though it is still odd, to me, that these things seem to really bother people where it didn't bother me at all.  But, I already knew I am an odd person, so I'm sure this says more about me than anything else.

"Funny" enough, Iser's wiki has this line: "However, these gaps cannot be filled arbitrarily, but through interpretive limits given in the text by an author. Iser finds this experience to be the breakdown of the subject-object division, in that "text and reader no longer confront each other as object and subject, but instead the 'division' takes place within the reader himself".  Rings a bit familiar...

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it does seem familiar, yes--we can be hegelian about it, or it could be a germanic preference for faustian metaphors drawn from goethe--two souls war within my breast, &c..  he's coming out of husserlian phenomenology.  some essays here.  husserl kinda loathed hegel, but that's not to say that he wasn't influenced by some of hegel's more enduring ideas.  on reception theory, iser goes one direction--fixing the text with known gaps to be filled by variable readers, whereas someone like stanley fish places the variables in the text itself.  good times.

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1 hour ago, .H. said:

There is no outside-text, right?  If I follow where you are going, that is.

I don't think that follows, and i think this forum is a good example of why. 

ASOS and events in it hit hard because they were pretty big amazing things - but also because all the clues were set up beforehand. If the only thing you cared about was the second apocalypse thatd be one thing, but there was a whole lot more setup that did not go anywhere at all - and apparently that it was meant to signify going somewhere was done intentionally, as was the lack of payoff. I dont think this has as much to do with the weight of secondary textual analysis and and more to do with there being absolutely nothing. 

Also there was a incel dragon. That also sucked. 

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was an incel dragon. That also sucked. 

i've forgotten, but what was the aesthetic objection to the inclusion of the perspective of aggressive internet virgins in the dialogue of a villain?

in writing that, i realize it may be a rhetorical question.

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3 minutes ago, sologdin said:

was an incel dragon. That also sucked. 

i've forgotten, but what was the aesthetic objection to the inclusion of the perspective of aggressive internet virgins in the dialogue of a villain?

in writing that, i realize it may be a rhetorical question.

...

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2 hours ago, Arakan said:

Any news about a sequel series? 

No comments from Scott in well over a year at this point, and the last thing he said was that he'd put projects on hold for well over a year before that to do a barn-into-mancave conversion.

Yeah, I'm not holding my hopes up for any more books. The publishers don't seem remotely keen (the existing books seem to be getting hard to find in print editions) and he's ruled out any kind of crowdfunding or self-publishing into the void, so I think that's about it unless he changes his mind.

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2 hours ago, sologdin said:

it does seem familiar, yes--we can be hegelian about it, or it could be a germanic preference for faustian metaphors drawn from goethe--two souls war within my breast, &c..  he's coming out of husserlian phenomenology.  some essays here.  husserl kinda loathed hegel, but that's not to say that he wasn't influenced by some of hegel's more enduring ideas.

Yeah, I mean, I personally just find Hegel interesting.  But there are some lines one can draw back to Bakker, from the Husserl to Heidegger line (who both "fought" Hegel in some sense), to Derrida (the 3rd opening quote is from Hegel in Of Grammatology) and Foucault (with the famous line: "A large part of my indebtedness is to Jean Hyppolite. I know that, for many, his work is associated with that of Hegel, and that our age, whether through logic or epistemology, whether though Marx or through Nietzsche, is attempting to flee Hegel....But truly to escape Hegel involves an exact appreciation of the price we have to pay to detach ourselves from him. It assumes that we are aware of the extent to which Hegel, insidiously perhaps, is close to us; it implies a knowledge, in that which permits us to think against Hegel, of that which remains Hegelian. We have to determine the extent to which our anti-Hegelianism is possibly one of his tricks directed against us, at the end of which he stands, motionless, waiting for us.")

Coincidentally (i.e. not at all, to me) Heidegger, Derrida and Foucault are all named by Bakker as influences.  In my head-canon though, Hegel is the unnamable influence, too large to be spoken explicitly.  Surely though, as always, this says more about me than it does about tSA, Bakker, Hegel, or hermeneutics most probably.

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1 hour ago, .H. said:

Yeah, I mean, I personally just find Hegel interesting.  But there are some lines one can draw back to Bakker, from the Husserl to Heidegger line (who both "fought" Hegel in some sense), to Derrida (the 3rd opening quote is from Hegel in Of Grammatology) and Foucault (with the famous line: "A large part of my indebtedness is to Jean Hyppolite. I know that, for many, his work is associated with that of Hegel, and that our age, whether through logic or epistemology, whether though Marx or through Nietzsche, is attempting to flee Hegel....But truly to escape Hegel involves an exact appreciation of the price we have to pay to detach ourselves from him. It assumes that we are aware of the extent to which Hegel, insidiously perhaps, is close to us; it implies a knowledge, in that which permits us to think against Hegel, of that which remains Hegelian. We have to determine the extent to which our anti-Hegelianism is possibly one of his tricks directed against us, at the end of which he stands, motionless, waiting for us.")

Coincidentally (i.e. not at all, to me) Heidegger, Derrida and Foucault are all named by Bakker as influences.  In my head-canon though, Hegel is the unnamable influence, too large to be spoken explicitly.  Surely though, as always, this says more about me than it does about tSA, Bakker, Hegel, or hermeneutics most probably.

I am sorry, I do appreciate your knowledge about German (amongst others) philosophers but this is the problem with analyzing Bakker here or in the other forum. It is over-analyzing and the text simply doesn’t justify it. It isn’t there or not to the extent that people thought it were (which comes back to @Kaligator and his criticism). I started reading the books thanks to this forum and the very interesting discussions on here. But I never got sucked into the hype or fan psychosis ;). Good books, PON even outstanding in parts, but not more. I am telling you all: you saw things which never were there in the first Place. 

And if we’re speaking about philosophical aspects, I am constantly missing the most important name of all when it comes to Earwa: Mister Schopenhauer. 
 

„A man can surely do what he wills to do, but cannot determine what he wills.“
—> topic: the darkness that comes before 

„You are free to do what you want, but you are not free to want what you want.“
—> topic: self-moving soul 

Anyway, someone should recommend the fabulous Netflix series „Dark“ to Bakker. Might give him new inspiration.

Edited by Arakan
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4 minutes ago, Arakan said:

It is over-analyzing and the text simply doesn’t justify it.

Probably, but personally, if I can't over-analyze something, honestly I don't find it interesting enough to give much attention.  A totally straight-forward, unambiguous, and clear thing seems like the least interesting thing I can think of.  Which, of course, is why I read far more Continental philosophy than physics books (or even fiction).  In the end, I am not exactly sure if I care too much if something is there in the phenomenological sense or the noumenal sense, interesting ideas are interesting.  If there was an Absolute/Objective manner of reading/writing, there would only be one book worth reading (the one which the Correct View).  Maybe it's just that I personally lack a rigorous theory of justification, or again, maybe some personal defect or psychosis, if you like.

14 minutes ago, Arakan said:

Good books, PON even outstanding in parts, but not more.

I mean, I agree, but I guess some might think I have a different view than this?  So be it, but it's never been the case.  I do find them more interesting than most fiction I try though, still.  (But again, I don't read much fiction now, as I find few that appeal to me (no, not an Objective value statement, just personal preference)).

17 minutes ago, Arakan said:

And if we’re speaking about philosophical aspects, I am constantly missing the most important name of all when it comes to Earwa: Mister Schopenhauer. 

I think it is likely that Bakker read Schopenhauer, but I haven't as much as I should, probably because I tend to find Idealism a bit more interesting, personally.  One of these days, just wish I actually knew German.

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It is over-analyzing and the text simply doesn’t justify it. It isn’t there or not to the extent that people thought it were 

am doubting the viability of over-analysis as an grievance.  under-analysis, maybe.

it's a bit odd to claim that something isn't there when people are actively discussing it.  the assumption is apparently that the text has things inside it, either inherently or placed therein by the author--and only those things may be there, which means that the reader has no creativity or agency--reading in this view is not a productive labor, but is merely consumptive.  that strikes me as an erroneous linguistics, and a fairly docile theory of how literacy functions.

i like the schopenhauer thesis.  it works with the adorno epigraph in one of the books, as the frankfurt school is paradoxically a schopenhauerian marxism, pessimistic optimists, or so.  crazy.

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17 minutes ago, sologdin said:

It is over-analyzing and the text simply doesn’t justify it. It isn’t there or not to the extent that people thought it were 

am doubting the viability of over-analysis as an grievance.  under-analysis, maybe.

it's a bit odd to claim that something isn't there when people are actively discussing it.  the assumption is apparently that the text has things inside it, either inherently or placed therein by the author--and only those things may be there, which means that the reader has no creativity or agency--reading in this view is not a productive labor, but is merely consumptive.  that strikes me as an erroneous linguistics, and a fairly docile theory of how literacy functions.

i like the schopenhauer thesis.  it works with the adorno epigraph in one of the books, as the frankfurt school is paradoxically a schopenhauerian marxism, pessimistic optimists, or so.  crazy.

Sorry, lost in translation ;) . I meant over-analyzing in the sense of building up way too high expectations which Bakker never could fulfill. One could always feel that he had some great ideas, I admit, but to transform great ideas into prose (which people still would like to read) is a different beast altogether. Let’s not forget, Bakker is no mad genius like Dostojewski or someone who spent decades to fine tune his thoughts (Tolstoi) but a part-time author with a full-time job. Considering the circumstances, he did good. 

 

Edited by Arakan
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