RARA-AVIS: Re: Super Heroes, Comics, and Noir

From: jacquesdebierue (jacquesdebierue@yahoo.com)
Date: 24 Jul 2008

  • Next message: jacquesdebierue: "RARA-AVIS: Re: Super Heroes, Comics, and Noir"

    --- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, "davezeltserman" <davezelt@...> wrote:
    > Mario, this is where we diagree, and I guess we'll have to agree to
    > disagree. Not every book where the protagonist is fucked is noir. Not
    > every tragedy is noir. I'll stick with my definition thatthere's a
    > choice involved, a line that is crossed. Let's look at the following
    > situation where a character has two choices, one which fucks him but
    > is the morally right choice, the other saves him but is having him
    > give into his worst instincts (betraying a loved one, etc.). A book
    > written as a tragedy would have him getting fucked, a noir book could
    > have him saving himself but leaving him psychically ruined.

    That's fine, but it implies a belief that people have choices... I am not joking. Somebody who doesn't believe in that would say that in both cases the guy is just sleepwalking. By which I mean to say that the idea of "free will" and "choice" can be played out in very different degrees. An author can make it seem like the protagonist has no choice -- without losing verisimilitude. Like Josef K., for example.

    I noticed this device of skirting (or hiding) the choices in Puzo's magnificent _The Last Don_, especially the long episodes that take place in Hollywood. He stays away from any judgement while relentlessly driving the story forward.



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