Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving

Jennie Augusta Brownscombe, "The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth"

Monday, November 23, 2015

Apollo 14 Landing Site


















Please click HERE to view more Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter photographs of Apollo landing sites.

Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

"Poetic License: A Poesy Definer?"

Ebi Robert is a Nigerian poet whose work appears in Emanations: Foray into Forever and Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5.  Recently, he published an essay on "Poetic License: A Poesy Definer?" in the on-line  journal Tuck.  Please click HERE to read the article.
 
Ebi Robert


Friday, November 13, 2015

Theorizing 2 + 2 = 5: A Reality Outside of the Mind?

Suffice it to say the senses put us into contact (don't really know what contact means here, but anyway...) with a mind-independent reality.  Of course this begs the question: does 2 + 2 = 4 if there is no mind (or senses) coming into contact with the question (or the equation)?  That is, is someone perceiving (or thinking) 2 + 2 = 4 necessary for two and two to actually make four?  An affirmative answer should appear to depend upon some sort of separation of grammar, mathematics, and the stream-of-life where 2 + 2 = 4. This would have to be a place, however, where existence is cleared of all experience, a place beyond time, a place outside of space...  For as far as I can peer into this place, well, it seems to be a pretty odd environment.  That oddness itself smacks of non-existence. Really, what is it I am actually in contact with here?  Therefore, I conclude that two and two do not necessarily have to make four in a place that does not exist. But, conversely, could 2 + 2 = 5 be true in this place that does not exist?  The answer...  yes!  Two and two could make five in a place that does not exist, outside of space, beyond time, a place clear of all experience. For here--that is nowhere--anything might be possible. But as to the possibility of nothing at all, well--especially considering all of the above--that does seem absurd, doesn't it?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Theorizing 2 + 2 = 5: From Victor Hugo to Elizabeth Anscombe to G. E. Moore

At issue: the truth and majority opinions.

In Napoléon le Petit Victor Hugo writes:
Now, get seven million five hundred thousand votes to declare that two and two make five, that the straight line is the longest road, that the whole is less than its part; get it declared by eight millions, by ten millions, by a hundred millions of votes, you will not have advanced a step.
What can we do with this?  Most highbrows will immediately recall a remark by Elizabeth Anscombe in her essay on "Modern Moral Philosophy" concerning Kant's Duty Ethics and the legislative weight of philosophical opinions:
Kant introduces the idea of “legislating for oneself,” which is as absurd as if in these days, when majority votes command great respect, one were to call each reflective decision a man made a vote resulting in a majority, which as a matter of proportion is overwhelming, for it is always 1-0.  The concept of legislation requires superior power in the legislator.  His own rigoristic convictions on the subject of lying were so intense that it never occurred to him that a lie could be relevantly described as anything but just a lie (e.g. as “a lie in such-and-such circumstances”).  His rule about universalizable maxims is useless without stipulations as to what shall count as a relevant description of an action with a view to constructing a maxim about it.
To bring things full circle then, we might remark that asserting "2 + 2 = 5" is nothing but a lie, and that any relevant descriptions (outside of theoretical assertions) regarding the efficacy of the statement "2 + 2 = 5" are impossible, as surely the grammar of the statement  "2 + 2 =" must always result in "4". 

To add further interest to this line of inquiry, we might bring in G. E. Moore's naturalistic fallacy, which certainly lends no credence whatsoever to the proposition (i.e. "2 + 2 = 5"). Compare  "2 + 2 ought to = 5" which is patently absurd, for in the case of arithmetic equations, ought is never part of a legitimate statement or a sensible expression.  The question is rather one of identity.  2 + 2 is 4. 

Now, is the "truth" identical to itself? History will show that awkward thinkers have said "no" and impressed many. 

I have said very little here that needs to be said.  But that little ought to mean a lot.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Theorizing 2 + 2 = 5: psychology, sociology, political science, etc.

From 1984 by George Orwell:









From an interview with Theodore Dalrymple, author of Our Culture, What's Left of It: The Mandarins and the Masses.
Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One's standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to. 
A question arises. What sort of people are the functionaries who distribute this "propaganda"?  From the same interview, Dalrymple advances a description that agrees with scenes Nabakov presents in his dystopian novel Bend Sinister:
FP: You mention how 19th century French aristocrat, the Marquis de Custine, made several profound observations on how border guards in Russia wasted his time pushing their weight around in stupid and pointless ways, and that this is connected to the powerlessness that humans live under authoritarianism. Tell us a bit more of how this dynamic works in Russia.

Dalrymple: With regard to Russia, I am not an expert, but I have an interest in the country. I believe that it is necessary to study 19th century Russian history to understand the modern world. I suspect that the characteristic of Russian authoritarianism precedes the Soviet era (if you read Custine, you will be astonished by how much of what he observed prefigured the Soviet era, which of course multiplied the tendencies a thousand times).

I suppose that people who feel little control over their own lives or destinies can obtain a slight sense of agency by interfering in the lives of others, in tiny ways. I have noticed that many of the men who are violently dictatorial at home often count for little once they pass their own threshold. They are the Stalins of their own home.

Incidentally, Custine called Nicholas I an 'eagle and insect.' I think this is a brilliant characterisation of dictators which aspire world power but who also need to enter into the tiniest and most intimate details of their citizens' existence.
Source

Friday, November 6, 2015

Theorizing 2 + 2 = 5: strike it where you will, it rings like postmodernism













Nazi theory indeed specifically denies that such a thing as "the truth" exists. ... The implied objective of this line of thought is a nightmare world in which the Leader, or some ruling clique, controls not only the future but the past. If the Leader says of such and such an event, "It never happened" – well, it never happened. If he says that two and two are five – well, two and two are five. This prospect frightens me much more than bombs.
            -- George Orwell, "Looking Back on the Spanish War" (1943)

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Meaningless Innuendo; or, Lord Byron in Love












I know that two and two make four—& should be glad to prove it too if I could—though I must say if by any sort of process I could convert 2 & 2 into five it would give me much greater pleasure.
                 --Lord Byron to fiancée Anaabella Milbanke 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

2 + 2 = 5: C'est une péninsule!

L. Sterns Newburg has posted a review on Amazon. Please click the small image below.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Twice two...

Twice two makes four seems to me simply a piece of insolence. Twice two makes four is a pert coxcomb who stands with arms akimbo barring your path and spitting. I admit that twice two makes four is an excellent thing, but if we are to give everything its due, twice two makes five is sometimes a very charming thing too.
                   -- Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Notes from Underground, Part I. Chapter 9
 
Fyodor Dostoevsky metro station, Moscow

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Friday, October 30, 2015

Happy Halloween


It is an unfortunate fact that the bulk of humanity is too limited in its mental vision to weigh with patience and intelligence those isolated phenomena, seen and felt only by a psychologically sensitive few, which lie outside its common experience. Men of broader intellect know that there is no sharp distinction betwixt the real and the unreal; that all things appear as they do only by virtue of the delicate individual physical and mental media through which we are made conscious of them; but the prosaic materialism of the majority condemns as madness the flashes of super-sight which penetrate the common veil of obvious empiricism.
                             — H. P. Lovecraft, The Tomb

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

More Announcements: Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5

Vitasta Raina and Michael G. Chivers offer exuberant descriptions of Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5.  Click their names and view their impressions.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Trafika Europe 5: Slovenian Interlude

Trafika Europe 5: Slovenian Interlude is now available as a free download.  The latest edition of the quarterly, edited by Andrew Singer, features new Slovenian literature from Maja Haderlap, Aleš Steger, Goran Vojnović, Tone Skrjanec, and Barbara Pogačnik – plus writing from Gøhril Gabrielsen, Tomas Tranströmer, Aylin Graves and Gábor Schein.

Please click HERE to view the new issue.  Click HERE to view the Trafika Europe website.


Saturday, October 17, 2015

An Epistle to the Miltonists

This afternoon I posted the following message to Milton-L, a "listserve" hosted by the University of Richmond.
Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of International Authors, I am happy to announce that the anthology Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5 has been published.  Of interest to Miltonists is twelve pages from a new scholarly translation of Torquato Tasso's Creation of the World (Il mondo creato). Entitled "The Poem of the Phoenix", this selection is from Day Five of Tasso's long poem.  The translation is rendered in modern language, and great pains have been taken to include every "jot and tittle" of Tasso's original.  The translation and editorial committee--consisting of Salwa Khoddam, Dario Rivorossa, and myself--have taken extraordinary care in representing both Tasso's text and texture.  We think it will be of especial interest to people in this group who wish to gain an immediate sense of how Tasso's technique, philosophy, and sensibility could have influenced Milton.  It is a joy to read.

Please view the new anthology on Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Emanations-2-5-Carter-Kaplan/dp/1514336693/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1444654663&sr=1-1

In Spring of 2016 the International Authors translation of Creation of the World, complete with illustrations, will be published in its entirety. 

Respectfully submitted,

Carter Kaplan

Friday, October 16, 2015

International Authors Website Update

The IA website has been updated to reflect the publication of Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5.  Please click HERE.
 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Emantions 2 + 2 = 5 is now available

Please click HERE to visit the printer's sales link (slightly faster delivery).

Amazon sales page, please click  HERE.






Sunday, October 11, 2015

Midwestern Traveler: wherever you go, there you are

This week watch for an announcement regarding the  publication of Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5.  In the meantime, Philip Murray-Lawson has posted an interview with American travel writer Christina Ammon.  As I also have Midwestern origins, I find that her description of breaking from the Midwest strikes a sympathetic chord.  Perhaps there is something about leaving the Midwest that is itself Midwestern, unique among the experiences of all those the world over who choose to leave their homes.  Perhaps the effect of the landscape is such that you can never really escape. Wherever you go, you take it with you. The flatness, the distant clouds, the sense that there is no where else to go--it stays with you.  Indeed, leaving the Midwest is psychologically impossible. Compare a figure in a Salvador Dali painting walking off that boundless plane.  Beyond the horizon there is nothing but another empty horizon, filled by different poetic metaphors, perhaps, but that broad horizon remains the defining characteristic of the place, and of the experience.  Our first fictitious Midwestern sister, Dorothy, is only half right when she says, "There is no place like home."  Oz is really just a figment of localized atoms swirling through an immense vacuum, and the truth of the matter is a Midwesterner is home everywhere.

Please click HERE to read the interview.

Dali, The Apothecary of Ampurden in Search of Absolutely Nothing, 1936

Friday, October 9, 2015

Emanations 5: the witching hour approacheth

















That look not like th' inhabitants o' th' Earth
And yet are on 't?—Live you? Or are you aught
That man may question?

        - Macbeth, Act I

Monday, October 5, 2015

A Happy Ending


Miracles Can Happen!
When kindhearted people unselfishly give of their time and resources to help an animal in distress...Miracles Happen!This is a story of a young fox that was left for dead on the side of the road. It's a story of hope and compassion and the amazing will of an animal to survive.It took a village to save her life, and she forever touched the hearts of...Jennifer who found her; fellow rehabber Diane in Stayner; volunteer drivers Elizabeth and Anne; Dr. Sherri Cox; Pawz 'N Clawz and Kelsey who donated foods for her; our supporters who help us make ends meet; and all our dedicated volunteers at WWS. So pat yourself on the back when you lend a helping hand and become an integral part of the bigger picture, because animals like Tammy wouldn't be here today if it weren't for you :-)<3 If you appreciate the work we do, please show your support here... https://www.gofundme.com/Tammy-ToddMiracle <3 This video is also available to share on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMykQDJ90kI
Posted by Woodlands Wildlife Sanctuary on Friday, August 28, 2015

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Project Apollo Photo Archive



















Please click HERE to visit the Apollo image gallery on flickr.

Friday, October 2, 2015

The Square and Stationary Earth

Click for larger view















Orlando Ferguson's map of the "Square and Stationary Earth" was meant to refute those arguing the Earth was an orb. Read about it HERE.

Meanwhile, Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5, which has nothing to do with flat earth theories, is coming out very soon.  Stay tuned.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Monday, September 28, 2015

Alexander Solzhenitsyn's Harvard University Commencment Address, June 8, 1978


If humanism were right in declaring that man is born only to be happy, he would not be born to die. Since his body is doomed to die, his task on earth evidently must be of a more spiritual nature. It cannot be unrestrained enjoyment of everyday life. It cannot be the search for the best ways to obtain material goods and then cheerfully get the most of them. It has to be the fulfillment of a permanent, earnest duty so that one's life journey may become an experience of moral growth, so that one may leave life a better human being than one started it.
Read the full text HERE.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Advisory

Truth burns but lies consume.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Gravity is a Cinematic Construction

Kubrick, engineering the illusion of artificial gravity, etc.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Editing continues, nearly there...

The good work moves ahead.  If you need a Highbrow refresher, I suggest you look HERE.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

The City in Imagination

Vitasta Raina's novella Writer's Block (International Authors, 2011) has received some attention on RamblingInTheCity, a website that explores urban planning issues in India.  Please click HERE.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Poetry, Medecine and Mensa in Kosovo: Philip Murray-Lawson interviews Dr. Aziz Mustafa

Philip Murray-Lawson has published an interview with Aziz Mustafa of Kosovo. Dr. Mustafa is a physician and poet whose work has appeared in Emanations. In the interview, he describes his origins, the challenges of being an intellectual in modern Kosovo-Albania, and gives an account of the Balkan poetic tradition. He also explains the influence of the medical profession on his own poetry.

Please click HERE.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Editing continues...

Jeffery Hodges has posted photos of the proof copy, HERE.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5 cover art by Ruud Antonius

Emanations: 2 + 2 = 5 is now in the final stages of production. Here is a glimpse of the cover art by Ruud Antonius, taken from his painting The Fourth Plinth  (oil on panel, 100 x 80 cm).

Mr. Antonius is a Dutch painter who lives in the United Kingdom.  He has a large following in Europe where in the world of fine art surrealism enjoys greater support than it does in Britain and the United States.  Please click HERE to visit Mr. Antonius's web site.

Front Cover






















Back Cover






















Ruud Antonius      


Monday, August 10, 2015

International Authors Meeting in the IBM Atrium, Manhattan, August 9, 2015

On Sunday August 9, International Authors had its third meeting (for reports on previous meetings in London and San Gimignano, see below).

The location was the atrium between the IBM and Trump Tower buildings in midtown Manhattan. We selected the atrium because it affords ample space with tables, good food (click HERE to see our restaurant) and also--reportedly--the space has good wyfy.  Well, two out of three...

Our ambition was to connect with our partners around the globe, and we did make brief contact with Ruud Antonius, but otherwise, alas, our aspirations remained unfulfilled.  After fifteen seconds we lost contact with Ruud, and after further attempts proved fruitless we gave up.  In future we will use a distance education classroom in some university.  My apologies to Mike Chivers, Tessa B. Dick, Peter Dizozza, Tiziana Grassi, and Vitasta Raina for not being able to establish a connection.

In the meantime, we had a good meeting. The participants:

Marleen S. Barr is known for her pioneering work in feminist science fiction and teaches English at the City University of New York. She has won the Science Fiction Research Association Pilgrim Award for lifetime achievement in science fiction criticism. Barr is the author of Alien to Femininity: Speculative Fiction and Feminist Theory, Lost in Space: Probing Feminist Science Fiction and Beyond, Feminist Fabulation: Space/Postmodern Fiction, and Genre Fission: A New Discourse Practice for Cultural Studies. Barr has edited many anthologies and co-edited the science fiction issue of PMLA. She is the author of the novels Oy Pioneer! and Oy Feminist Planets: A Fake Memoir.

Jason W. Ellis, a member of the International Authors Board of Editorial Advisors, is Assistant Professor of English at the New York City College of Technology in Brooklyn, NY.  Jason's doctoral dissertation director, Mack Hassler, is another member of our board. Visit Jason's blog HERE. 

Carter Kaplan is no stranger to the Highbrow Commonwealth. 
 
Richard Kostelanetz: Individual entries on his work in several fields appear in various editions of Reader’s Guide to Twentieth-Century Writers, Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature, Contemporary Poets, Contemporary Novelists, Postmodern Fiction, Webster’s Dictionary of American Writers, The HarperCollins Reader’s Encyclopedia of American Literature, Baker’s Biographical Dictionary of Musicians, Directory of American Scholars, Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in the World, Who’s Who in American Art, NNDB.com, Wikipedia.com, and Britannica.com, among other distinguished directories. Website.
 
Kristine Shmenco is a fiction writer whose short-short stories have appeared in several volumes of Emanations.  She was in on the ground floor of the project back in the days when the journal Prototype X was emerging from the website of British fantasy writer Michael Moorcock. Click HERE for her website. 
 
Andrew Singer is a poet, prose writer, literary editor and critic presently in New York. He is Director of Trafika Europe, an initiative to showcase new literature from Europe in English translation, with an online quarterly digest, and preparing to launch Europe's first online “literary” radio station trafikaeurope.orgWith a university degree in writing poetry under the tutelage of Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott, he teaches university seminars in Anglo-American literature and literary translation. 

The meeting was informal and relaxed.  As with our other meetings, we took the opportunity to develop ideas and build professional friendships.  We discussed poetry, books, our projects, and the relationships among the arts, writing, and the academy. It was very enjoyable to engage these areas from an interdisciplinary perspective, and as many of us have academic vocations, we were keen to not only discuss these subjects as subjects and activities, but also as figures in a sort of cognoscenti shorthand that allowed us to explore the nature and character of academic culture, and at stratospheric levels. It was one of the most rewarding philosophical conversations I've ever been engaged in.  (And here of course I mean philosophical in a highbrow sense; that is, a project of inquiring into what the teachers are saying and feeling.)  Richard Kostelanetz was a terrific resource, providing us with engaging anecdotes about his experiences and projects.  For instance, as an undergraduate at Brown University, Richard was the student of S. Foster Damon, whose books on William Blake are well known.  What I did not know about Damon was that he was also a student of the avant-garde. Marleen described her roman à clef novels. Andrew described his Trafika Europe project, and related his experiences living and teaching in Hungary. Jason described a concept he is developing which approaches the study of literary genera from an anthropological perspective. He plans to work the idea into an article for Emanations. Kristine described how her short fiction is evolving into longer projects, and informed us about the writing groups she's involved in.  I reported on the forthcoming volume of Emanations (all 600 pages) and showed the group the cover featuring a painting by Ruud Antonius (stay tuned to Highbrow for a peek at the cover soon).

We entertained notions about alternative models for editing Emanations, perhaps assigning each part--fiction, poetry, essays--to a separate editor.  We discussed the forthcoming International Authors translation of Torquato Tasso's Il mondo creato (Creation of the World), Mack Hassler's recent work bringing the Michael Butterworth show to Kent State University, the history of International Authors (beginning on Michael Moorcock's website,  Darren Partridge's, Prototype X, then the emergence of Emanations and International Authors...), plans for further networking, and we also discussed possibilities for locating grants to support an expansion of the International Authors project.

AS, KS, RK, MB, JE

RK, MB, JE, CK, AS
























See also: 
International Authors Meeting at the St Pancras Hotel, London, July 31, 2011 
International Authors Meeting in San Gimignano, Italy, August 9, 2014 
Kristine Shmenco's impressions of our meeting, HERE.

Spring High: Thunderchiefs vs. the SAMs that weren't there

Decades later pilot and filmmaker Vic Vizcarra learned that the SAMs had been pulled out and the AA guns moved in, creating a "flack trap" for American forces.  See the "Summation" that begins at 22:47. It might be observed (perhaps cynically) that the "ruse" achieved in this incident is an allegory for the entire war, characterizing the way the US was drawn into a conflict that was not what it appeared to be.  Click HERE for general conclusions by Robert McNamara.  And click HERE for additional Highbrow assessment.


Animated documentary of "Spring High", the first counter-air Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) mission in history of aerial combat from Victor Vizcarra on Vimeo.

Vic Vizcarra


Tuesday, August 4, 2015

"An assuagement of life's vibrations": Conrad's Heart of Darkness, continued

Here is M-A Berthier's response to the remarks I made yesterday on Conrad's Heart of Darkness:
I wondered when they used the term "ambiguity" if they were thinking of one of Empson's "7 Types of Ambiguity," but I doubt it. The work is written with irony, of course, but that doesn't make it all that ambiguous. There is one part of the novella that has always seemed problematic to me, but a lot of criticism I've read on the subject treats this part with a heavy hand. The passage I am thinking of is the final interview with Kurtz's "Intended." Marlow goes to speak with her as an attempted act of "closure." He at one point clearly gets pissed off that she is so blissfully and idealistically unaware of what Kurtz was "really like," and Marlow reacts by making a series of sarcastic replies that are very thinly veiled double entendre. But he makes a mistake, and it triggers a flashback for him that is like the onset of post-traumatic stress syndrome. He realizes that he is blaming her at some level, and circles back, and does penance (in a sense) with a piece of violence to his own principles. Early in the novella, he said that he could never abide lies, because there was a scent of death about them -- but he then escapes the interview with Kurtz's Intended by telling her a lie; and the lie restores the balance of the universe for her, and keeps the "darkness" of his experience from contaminating the poor woman's life further. But Marlow's goal of obtaining closure with the interview is shattered, and now, like the Ancient Mariner, he tells his story to a bunch of financier types on a private yacht in an attempt to get the albatross off his neck. And you know that it never works, and he probably does this again and again and again to people who don't understand the work. (High school students and bad critics and readers.) At least a few critics of the work have taken Conrad to task about that last interview. I think you can criticize it legitimately for the dialogue he gave to the lady, because it's somewhat maladroit, and gives the impression that she has a brain not much larger than a petit pois. But Conrad often had a few characterization issues with female dialogue, so this is hardly a surprise, and I regard it as a small blemish. But to criticize the scene for what happens, or for Marlow's unreasonable anger seems to me to be a failure to come to grips with his psychic burden. Marlow didn't want that burden. He just wanted to go to the heart of deepest, darkest Africa, one of his childhood dreams. It became a nightmare, and it permanently darkened his view of the world. And he had to do that final task for Kurtz, and he wished to god that someone could stop the voices in his head. (The horror… etc.) When I hear Leavis et al. suggest that this is a satire on colonialism, I wonder what the hell he was reading instead of Conrad.
To which I respond: I remember reading a letter in which Conrad expresses disapproval of men who marry when they are young. I recall his saying such a move is driven by insecurity. My sense is that Marlowe is part of that sentiment. That is, Marlowe is Conrad's bachelor avatar, as well as a way to play off the English chap persona, which, in its wilder, cowboy form (a la Marlowe) could be about as good as it gets for expressing irony in our language. As a type, you could compare Marlowe to those Victorians who explored the American west just for the sport of it. Compare our own Francis Parkman. Restlessness. Expectations. But as for the bachelor persona... Conrad married after he became wealthy ( I seem to recall seeing pictures of her, and she express the kind a beauty an artist or a poet finds attractive, indeed the kind of beauty that attracts a deep, active, and vulnerable desire). In contrast to Marlowe, I think Conrad was "larger" in his ability to engage the world as a worldly and wise person, while Marlowe remains that footloose bachelor, which carries with it a heavy onus in terms of accepting the world as it is. Cowboys never have to grow up, and it is a jolly good time, but by the same token, if I am making any sense here, they also never do grow up, which is a lonely place, and a regrettable outcome indeed.   Marlowe's psychic burden is driven by his bachelor scruples, and his "code of truth."  But altogether, life is not so much a problem of resolving ambiguity or remaining loyal to some code; it is a matter of acceptance and compromise. That is, it's a matter of growing  up.

Jesse George, Mrs. Joseph Conrad


















According to Wikipedia:
Jessie was an unsophisticated, working-class girl, sixteen years younger than Conrad. To his friends, she was an inexplicable choice of wife, and the subject of some rather disparaging and unkind remarks. However, according to other biographers such as Frederick Karl, Jessie provided what Conrad needed, namely a "straightforward, devoted, quite competent" companion. Similarly, Jones remarks that, despite whatever difficulties the marriage endured, "there can be no doubt that the relationship sustained Conrad's career as a writer", which might have been a lot less successful without her. SOURCE
Lady Ottoline Morrell offers the following observation of Jesse, which is perhaps significant insofar as it directly follows her description of the importance of the Congo experience to Conrad's view of the world:
He was dressed very carefully in a blue double-breasted jacket. He talked... apparently with great freedom about his life – more ease and freedom indeed than an Englishman would have allowed himself. He spoke of the horrors of the Congo, from the moral and physical shock of which he said he had never recovered... [His wife Jessie] seemed a nice and good-looking fat creature, an excellent cook, as Henry James [had] said, and was indeed a good and reposeful mattress for this hypersensitive, nerve-wracked man, who did not ask from his wife high intelligence, only an assuagement of life's vibrations.... He made me feel so natural and very much myself, that I was almost afraid of losing the thrill and wonder of being there, although I was vibrating with intense excitement inside; and even now, as I write this, I feel almost the same excitement, the same thrill of having been in the presence of one of the most remarkable men I have known. His eyes under their pent-house lids revealed the suffering and the intensity of his experiences; when he spoke of his work, there came over them a sort of misty, sensuous, dreamy look, but they seemed to hold deep down the ghosts of old adventures and experiences – once or twice there was something in them one almost suspected of being wicked.... But then I believe whatever strange wickedness would tempt this super-subtle Pole, he would be held in restraint by an equally delicate sense of honour.... In his talk he led me along many paths of his life, but I felt that he did not wish to explore the jungle of emotions that lay dense on either side, and that his apparent frankness had a great reserve.  SOURCE