Sunday, July 30, 2006

Boil 1.98

Geist's videos here

Sunday, July 23, 2006

File 1.61 addendum

Geist's happiness this week: Q to 12.

File 1.61

It is now possible to quantify people's levels of happiness pretty accurately by asking them, by observation, and by measuring electrical activity in the brain, in degrees from terrible pain to sublime joy.
Polly Toynbee, Guardian Weekly, June 23-29, p. 15.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

From behind 2.03

Geert Wachtelaer's short films. A melancholic's guide to film?

See a last impression or underpass

Friday, July 21, 2006

Spoil 1.77

Der Geist ist hiemit das sich selbst tragende absolute reale Wesen...Der Geist ist das sittliche Leben eines Volks, insofern er die unmittelbare Wahrheit ist ; das Individuum, das eine Welt ist.

Spirit [Geist] is therfore the self-supporting, absolute, real being...spirit is the moral life of a people, in so far as it is immediate truth; [and/or] the individual that is a world.
Transl. mine.
I think we can safely say that this is not the case.

(more here)

Boil 1.97 continued

After ten weeks, Caraboo's former employer read about, and recognized, her. She was Mary Baker, an unemployed servant who could read and write a little and possessed a vivid fantasy life (she was recalled as a teller of alarmingly exciting bedtime stories for children). Adrift and workless, she had noticed some French lace-makers with a "peculiar head-dress", and had emulated them by putting a shawl on her head. Prompted by this "turban", the rest had followed. Baker was forgiven by her hosts, travelled to America (where she appeared on the public stage as "Caraboo", her imposture now accepted as dramatic performance), and wrote an autobiography doubtless as unreliable as the conjectures of the literati about her Oriental origins. Portraits drawn after her unmasking show an ordinary woman with full lips, dark eyes and a large nose. The fascinating, angelic countenance had been a product of the cross-cultural mystery evoked by her masquerade.
G. Lindop, ibid.

Boil 1.97

..."Caraboo", a mysterious lady, who appeared at Almondsbury near Bristol in 1817, unable to speak any known language but distinguished by a strange black turban. Described as "a most beautiful woman", "surprisingly fascinating" and "an angel", "Caraboo" supplied little more than her own name, but taken up by the local gentry and confronted with a succession of scholars and Orientalists proceeded to assent to various bits of the theories they offered about her; thus, as in some psychological parlour game, she constructed an identity which was a projection of her interviewers' fantasies. It was soon agreed that she was a "person of consequence" from an island near Sumatra. The daughter of a Chinese father and a Malay mother, she had been abducted by pirates, from whose clutches she had escaped by jumping into the English channel.
Grevel Lindop, TLS June 6 2006, p.8

Saturday, July 15, 2006

From behind 2.02

...als ploetzlich der groesste Teil der Stadt, mit einem Gekrache, als ob das Firmament einstuerzte, versank, und alles, was Leben atmete, unter seinen Truemmern begrub.

...when suddenly a large part of the town sunk, with a thunder as if the firmament was crashing down, and buried all life beneath its rubble.
H. v. Kleist, Das Erdbeben in Chili

Spoil 1.76

We cannot know the extent to which Cardoso experimented with the more obvious kinds of Baroque style, since all his polychoral music was destroyed in the Lisbon earthquake of 1755.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Boil 1.96

He wrote, I've been around the world seven times, now only banalities interest me.
Chris Marker, Sans Soleil

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

From behind 2.01

Je suis un passéiste
J.P Melville: Portrait en 9 Poses

Monday, July 10, 2006


A most peculiar man

Saturday, July 08, 2006


Es sei von grosser Wichtigkeit fuer die Studie, dass sie ihm antworte, aber sie antworte ihm nicht. Daraufhin ginge er ans Fenster und liesse frische Luft herein, tatsaechlich sei nach stundenlanger Arbeit mit der urbantschitschen Methode die schlechteste Luft im Zimmer. Aber auch in frischer Luft reagiere sie nicht, antworte sie ihm nicht. Auch wenn ihr Zimmer vollkommen ausgekuehlt sei, antworte sie ihm nicht. Er mache das Fenster wieder zu und fange an, ihr aus dem Kropotkin vorzulesen, darin glaubte er angeblich immer ein Mittel zu haben, sie zum Sprechen zu bringen, Auflehnung, Protest erwarte er, aber selbst anch laengerem Vorlesen aus dem Kropotkin keinerlei Reaktion. Das gehasste Buch bewirke in ihr nur noch groesseres Schweigen, soll Konrad gesagt haben. Er koenne ihr aus dem Ofterdingen vorlesen, denke er, aber er liest ihr nicht aus dem Ofterdingen vor, das bedeute ja Selbstaufgabe, soll er zu Wieser gesagt haben.

It was of major importance to the study that she should answer him, but she would not answer him. Thus he would go to the window to let some fresh air in, indeed, after hours of work with the Urbantchite method the room was always filled with the stuffiest air. But even when the room had cooled down thoroughly she would not answer him. He would close the window again and begin to read to her from Kropotkin which he always considered a means to get her to speak; he would expect resistance, protest, yet no reaction even after reading to her at length from the Kropotkin. The hated book would only increase her silence, Konrad allegedly said. He might read to her from the Ofterdingen, he would think, but he does not read to her from the Ofterdingen, this would mean capitulation he allegedly said to Wieser.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

From behind 2.00

Erstes Kapitel
Allgemeine Betrachtungen ueber die Entstehung der Erde, ueber ihre wichtigsten Revolutionen, und ueber ihren vormahligen und gegenwaertigen Zustand.

§. I.
Nach all den grossen Entdeckungen, die man in unserm Jahrhundert gemacht, und nach allen den scharfsinnigen Untersuchungen, die man vorzueglich in unserm Zeitalter angestellt hat, ist die Geschichte der Bildung der Erde, und ihrer vornehmsten Revolutionen doch immer noch mit undurchdringlichen Finsternissen bedeckt.

Chapter One
General observations on the development of the earth, on its major revolutions, and on its past and present condition.

§. I.
Even following all the great discoveries of our century, and after all the astute investigations embarked upon in our age, the history of the formation of the earth and of its primary revolutions remains shrouded in impenetrable gloom.
(transl. mine)

Christoph Meiners, Grundriss der Geschichte der Menschheit, Lemgo, 1793.
Christoph Meiners, Outline of the History of Mankind, Lemgo, 1793.