Thursday, September 28, 2023
Wednesday, September 27, 2023
Photographs from recent expeditions suggest the Moon's surface has eroded considerably over the course of the past three-hundred years.
Monday, September 25, 2023
Saturday, September 23, 2023
Friday, September 22, 2023
Thursday, September 21, 2023
From around the web, a collection of remarks on this curious painting:
“The presented painting of Kosolapov 'Genetics', 1983 refers to saying 'Genetics is imperialistic whore', that was really popular among Soviet intellectuals. There was a legend that impudent phrase belongs to academic Trofim Lysenko while contribution he denounce categorically and proclaimed 'reactionary-idealistic Morganism-Mendelism' as antiscience—in favour of Michurin agrobiology. But, in fact, this phrase belongs to satiric writer Alexander Khazin and first time appeared in his play 'Magicials live next to us' (1964). In his painting Alexander Kosolapov literally visualize devaluate phrase by depicting naked acrobat 'girl' looking in microscope and governmental department at the background. Making a parody of aesthetic of order propaganda painting Kosolapov decorates the painting with life affirming symbols: bird on the green branch, piles of books, pioneers who are visible between the legs and red flags of course with the clear blue sky as a background."
“The painter was an emigrant. The picture is a reference to the popular expression of the Stalinist biologists: ‘The genetical “science” is a slut of imperialism!’ In the times of Stalin, genetics was considered a ‘false science’ and was dismissed by the official biology, which preferred to believe in the ‘inheritable changes.’”
ten years after Lysenko, the powerful Soviet pseudo-scientist who rejected
Mendelian genetics and set biology in the USSR back a hundred years, died.
Maybe his spirit lived on.”
“1983? In fact, in the Brezhnevian Era such representation would have been censored and considered ‘degenerate art.’”
1983, Kosolapov lived in the US, presumably stripped of Soviet citizenship.
It’s a satirical sots-art movement painting.”
Tuesday, September 19, 2023
Monday, September 18, 2023
Sunday, September 17, 2023
Thursday, September 14, 2023
Wednesday, September 13, 2023
Authors colleague, Japanese artist Nobxhiro Santana, provides the following:
The title is written from the right side and is written in katakana as "コドモノクニ". Meaning: Children's Country.
The bottom left of the title is "September," and the bottom right is Volume 10, No. 10.
At the bottom left, it says "three-page large appendix included".
"Kodomonokuni" was a children's magazine published by Tokyosha (currently Hearst Fujingahosha) from January 1, 1922 to March 1, 1944. It is a representative pictorial magazine of the Taisho era that contributed to the establishment of the genre of children's pictures drawn for children." Source
Tuesday, September 12, 2023
Monday, September 11, 2023
Sunday, September 10, 2023
(Click the cover images for descriptions)
The Man in the High Castle TV series. Click here and view the first episode free.
Saturday, September 9, 2023
Here I shall make some "English" remarks (and the distinctions some make between the "English" and the "British" notwithstanding).
We all know Wittgenstein wrote in German. Could his roots in the German language be his motivation for making such statements? In English, these are--culturally, linguistically, from a literary perspective--SILLY remarks. And "silly" is a kind way to put it. Nor do I mean this in an anti-intellectual sense. The fact of the matter is, in English, there is a well-established intellectual position that says... Erm... Well, it suggests, "something is not quite right here. Yes?"
Or put it this way... Is the German language--as a medium of philosophical disposition and activity... a "loci" of obtuse self-importance, stiff-necked acerbity, obnoxious intrusiveness, and awkward seriousness--a source of conceptual confusion"?
I recall Peter
Hacker once telling me, "The problem with American English is that it has
been corrupted with abstract nouns, because of German immigration." And I
suppose he has a point, as a matter of linguistic and historical fact. I recall
taking an English friend though a train station in the metro NYC area, in New
Jersey. She laughed: "'The Journal Square Transportation Center!' Pfft! Do
they mean rail and bus station! Ha! Ha! Ha!"
In a recent discussion of such matters, Luigi la Via remarks, “I've read in a Kundera novel that each common noun when said in German acquires a terrific metaphysical strength.” In English, we call this reification, treating an abstract noun or an abstract concept as if it was a real thing... Or, as Kundera suggests (I have not read this passage, nor do I know how it comes across in the original language), in German there is something monumental, or "mythological" about philosophical nouns, as if they've been valorized in some terrific national epic fraught with sturm und drang, rock and roll heroes playing guitars with violin bows, fist-raising mobs, goose-stepping hosts, slave labor camps, and thunder-belching gods.
Along these lines, recall the frequent use of the definite article in the Greek language, and reflect the linguistic imprecision that causes philosophers to reify abstract nouns into concrete, as it were, metaphysical conceptions. The field of Ontology, for example, was in its genesis enhanced by the use of the, as in the being. The definite article--the--enhances the illusion, for Parmenides that being is a thing. A property (or a part, an abstraction) becomes a thing. Example, the coldness, the damp, the colorness (and whatever that is, ahem); if we call it the colorness, then it must be something. And so on.
To put it in a
more forceful--but I think English--way: "Now here is an insight into
why in the 1940s we found it necessary to build Lancaster bombers and take the
business to the skies over Germany." And, yes, I wish this was simply a
joke, but it is not.
But let's end this on a lighter note.
As to the question heading the post on September 7: is Wittgenstein writing satire? Is Wittgenstein engaged, like Nabokov, in using parody to convey amusing philosophical insights?
I think so. For an example, see the quote from his On Certainty that serves as an epigraph in Emanations: I am Not a Number (click the title, then click the "Look Inside" feature and scroll to the epigraph at the beginning of the book). Also, see my post from August 27, "If White was a sound... If White was a color..." in which I set out to make some philosophical points but was somewhat surprised--and amused--to perceive myself writing a kind of parody.
Want to go deeper? Click here.
|Philosophical pith or Wagnerian dreck? You decide!|
Thursday, September 7, 2023
The question is: is constructing a 'transparent white body' like constructing a 'regular biangle'?
I can look at a body and perhaps see a matt white surface, i.e. get the impression of such a surface, or the impression of transparency (whether it actually exists or not). This impression may be produced by the distribution of the colours, and white and the other colours are not involved in it in the same way.
(I took a green painted lead cupola to be translucent greenish glass without knowing at the time about the special distribution of colours that produced this appearance.)
And white may indeed occur in the visual impression of a transparent body, for example as a reflection, as a high-light. I.e. if the impression is perceived as transparent, the white which we see will simply not be interpreted as the body's being white.
Nor can we say that white is essentially the property of a--visual--surface. For it is conceivable that white should occur as a high-light or as the colour of a flame.
A body that is actually transparent can, of course, seem white to us; but it cannot seem white and transparent.
But we should not express this by saying: white is not a transparent colour.
'Transparent' could be compared with 'reflecting'.
An element of visual space may be white or red, but can't be either transparent or opaque.
Transparency and reflection only exist in the dimension of depth of a visual image.
- Remarks on Colour, III, 138-140, 145-150
Wednesday, September 6, 2023
Monday, September 4, 2023
Sunday, September 3, 2023
Friday, September 1, 2023
Curious about UFO's? A new US website dedicated to studying such phenomena is under development. Click the following image to visit the site:
As for the Latin on the seal...
Universum mutao est
"The Universe is Changing."
nostra est quod cogitations nostra facere est
"Our life is what we make of it."
Rather than the study of evidence for extra-terrestrial life, does the language on the seal announce the advent of an era of transhumanism?