From my writing (main) tumblr.
- I’ve been thinking about deleting this Tumblr and starting to use my other account as central, as I’m tired of being a split personality between esthergreenwood/thehoodwink. I’m also getting commitment issues, if you can have that for a blog, and I feel like we might be breaking up. I surrendered my anonymity a long time ago, so using my real name won’t be a big deal.
- It’s my birthday drinks tonight, although it’s not my birthday until next Friday, it’s going to be weird being the centre of attention for a couple of hours. If my friends are mean to me through the abuse of alcohol, I will get them back eventually. However, if I drink enough I’ll start writing something interesting.
- As proved by an earlier post, My humour writing is terrible, as is my sarcasm, and therefore my wit.
- Wine is terribly, terribly good.
— Elliot, in Hannah and Her Sisters. dir. Woody Allen, 1986.
for lack of anything else to say and as a study tool, here is my vocabulary list for my nabokov final this afternoon. considering the works we have recently covered this list seems lacking in words both ornithological and lepidopterical and strangely concerned with anatomy. whatevs yo.
I am a mega Nabokov geek, and this is great.
Sunday Painting. (aka essay procrastination).
J.M.W. Turner ‘The Slave Ship’ or ‘Slavers Throwing Overboard the Dead and Dying - Typhoon coming on’. 1840.
I briefly studied this painting in my earlier years of University, as it inspired a poem-novel by David Dabydeen entitled ‘Turner’. In the foreground of the painting you can make out the figures of a few slaves thrown overboard, as the insurance for a ‘lost’ slave was greater than the money they would have received for an ill slave in an auction. Turner’s painting is so full of anger, so enraged with fire, and the tones of red are nothing less than blood-like. Although it was painted after the abolishment of slavery in the British Empire, it still serves as a powerful reminder of terrible times.
In Dabydeen’s poem, the postcolonial Other is given a voice with which to speak of the injustice against them; the slaver ‘Turner’ is shown to rape and abuse the slaves upon his ship, but also to teach them his language, like Prospero’s lessons to Caliban in The Tempest that is shown to backfire:
You taught me language; and my profit on’t
Is, I know how to curse. The red plague rid you
For learning me your language!
(The Tempest, Act 1 Scene 2)
Dabydeen’s poem is a great example of a voice that attempts to cling onto an identity, acknowledging the role of language in their captivity as it seeks to attack their mother tongue. In Dabydeen’s poem, the association between the introduction of a ‘new’ language and sexual violence is obvious, as both are effectively ‘raped’ by their oppressors:
‘Turner crammed our boys’ mouths too with riches,
His tongue spurting strange potions upon ours
Which left us dazed, which made us forget
The very sound of our speech. Each night
Aboard ship he gave selflessly the nipple
Of his tongue until we learnt to say profitably
In his own language, we desire you, we love
You, we forgive you. He whispered eloquently
Into our ears even as we wriggled beneath him
Breathless with pain, wanting to remove his hook
Implanted in our flesh.”
This is the most powerful aspect of Dabydeen’s poem-novel, and although the painting with which it is immediately associated implies a narrative which was previously hidden, it is the role of the postcolonial writer to fully reveal these horrors that Turner’s blood-red skies cry for.
Scenes from my Sunday walk.
Hove’s architecture is one big eccentric patchwork quilt. Beside these beautiful buildings are horrible 1970’s blocks, but when there are whole streets filled with structures like these it’s easy to ignore them. I had to go on an exciting solo mission to Wickes, and thought I’d take advantage of a day that wasn’t overcast or bitterly cold.
Note: I am shit at Photoshop. And this post is boring.
Note again: The building at top-left is actually a series of apartments, and the building is from 1893. Anyone want to go halves?