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Live from Panera

Where I scored an outlet, which I'm using to get a full charge on my netbook as well as on the emergency power thingie, which remains one of our best impulse buys EVER.

Why, you ask? Oh, that would be down to the HUGE HONKIN TREE LIMB that made a rat's nest of the power lines just down the street from our house around 4 pm yesterday, during a fairly impressive storm that apparently did quite a lot of that sort of thing in a brief span of tiime. ComEd's current estimate for restoring our service is 11 pm tomorrow. Yay. (At least we didn't get the tornados here.)

Murphy's Law, of course, dictates that brainiacfive just made a Sam's Club run a few days ago, so the freezer runneth over. *sigh* Some of the stuff will refreeze okay, but we really weren't planning on going through the turkey burgers quite this fast. Of course, since the only way we can cook is on the grill, they're also the easiest meal to make.

Needless to say, there will be no "Dance With the Angels," or any other vid by me, submitted to the Premieres show at VividCon. Well, maybe not quite needless to say, since the deadline is midnight Friday, but, y'know, Y HALO THAR TECH WEEK, so the only way to do that would have been to finish the vid by tomorrow morning. And since Media Encoder was still in the middle of cropping the last few clips when the power went... Um. No. Weighing whether I want to finish it for the reel, and skip sending it to the con. I did get "Cut" in for Nearly New, so this will still be the first time I actually have a vid in a show when I'm attending the con.

Speaking of tech week, I think we might actually have a show I want people to see, come next weekend. Stay tuned. :-)

The good news is I've had plenty of non-electricity-having time today to get about 2/3 of the way through A Victorian Muse, which is well worth the reading but decidedly NOT something to drop $120 on unless your professor doesn't give you a choice. Obviously the chapters on the Rossetti family are of the most interest to me -- one that examines Gabriele senior's critical (and Masonic-underpinned) writing and the controversy over it, segueing into an overview of responses from each of the kids, including Maria, who I didn't even know had written anything of the kind; then another taking a closer look at Christina's Monna Innominata (which isn't about Beatrice per se, but is relevant because it speaks from the perspective of an idealized muse and the problems that creates for her) and at several of Gabriel's numerous Dante-themed paintings and poems. She notes the tendency for biographers and art historians to emphasize the autobiographical in the latter, but mostly avoids doing so herself. So the mention of Lizzie is limited -- even though the very first sentence in the book is a description of Beata Beatrix -- but it's kind of refreshing.

I'm intrigued that she's included a chapter on Tennyson's In Memoriam, which goes into some moderate depth on Arthur Henry Hallam (the subject of the elegy), including his criticism of Rossetti pater's approach and touching on the significance of the Cambridge Apostles, most of which is new information to me, though I'm noddingly familiar with Hallam and of course more so with Tennyson. The argument that Hallam is presented as a male Beatrice-analogue is well constructed and interesting, even if it is tangential to my primary interest. Ditto the chapter on George Eliot's Romola, which I haven't read and now think I need to.

The construction is obviously academic -- right down to "this chapter will argue blah-blah-blah" -- and thus can seem a bit repetitive, but overall it's very readable and straightforward. There are a few points where I've had to read back over a sentence to parse it properly; she could have benefited from a more careful copy-editing by a native English speaker, though there's very little wrong with her English. Mostly it's the occasional wrong preposition or doubling of adverbs around what they're modifying. (I keep thinking of Heidi Klum telling the models on Project Runway that "this is also a competition for you as well," so I assume that's a German syntax thing.)


( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 20th, 2010 02:16 am (UTC)
I'm sorry about the timing of this power outage! You've been so inspired and diligent with your vid.

The idea of Hallam as a Beatrice-analogue is new to me, as well. I must go beef up my Tennyson knowledge, and see what there is to see there!

I hear this author on the tendency toward genetic criticism on D.G.R.! Sometimes I just want to ask critics whether they think he had any creative imagination at all, the way they attribute every line and pose to his real life.

>"George Eliot's Romola, which I haven't read and now think I need to."

I own two copies of it (both older than I am). I think that it is one of her less successful novels -- but of course all her novels are very good! -- probably because she wrote it serially, unlike the others. That WIP thing worked marvelously well for some people (e.g. Dickens) but not so much for her. Romola includes Real Historical Figures. :-) If you decide to read it, let me know, and I will try to reread it in tandem; it's been many years since the one time I read it, and I'm sure I would get more out of it now.
Jun. 21st, 2010 12:38 pm (UTC)
You've been so inspired and diligent with your vid.

Ah, well. It's waited six or seven years; it can wait a little longer. %-} Thanks!

I hear this author on the tendency toward genetic criticism on D.G.R.!

I understand the temptation to read anyone's work as autobiographical, if nothing else as an attempt to understand Where This Stuff Comes From by people who don't necessarily live with that process. But there are several stock observations of the sort that get trotted out with little or no further examination about all the PRB and their associates, and it gets tiresome. Of course, the temptation to go that route is stronger with DGR and Dante/Beatrice, since it's encouraged by references in his own letters, but if you're paying attention, you know that's a matter of casting his life against the framework that was already in his head, not the other way around. He had a very defined philosophy on Dante and its figures long before he met the flesh-and-blood people he partially identified them with.

Probably the most interesting observation Straub makes about him -- and it comes up as a point of comparison/contrast in later chapters -- is the notion that he felt that neither painting nor poetry alone was sufficient to get across what he had in his head, which is why he so often did both on a single subject. It's the centerpiece of her argument regarding intermediality/transmediality as analogous to Beatrice's status as both historical person and idealized figure. Serendipitously, having just finished this book, I've gone back to the Marsh biography in the midst of the early/mid-1850s semi-paralyzed waffling between the two disciplines. :-)

But boy, I don't envy her the task of coming up with clear and consistent designations to refer continually to Gabriele Rossetti (senior), Dante Gabriel Rossetti (wisely not bothering to get into his having been christened Gabriel Dante Charles!), and Dante Alighieri. Not to mention a chapter full of FIVE Rossettis! The period on her keyboard got a workout with all the first initials.

Romola includes Real Historical Figures. :-) If you decide to read it, let me know, and I will try to reread it in tandem

Will do, though I doubt it'll be any time soon.

Edited at 2010-06-21 02:20 pm (UTC)
Jun. 20th, 2010 03:45 am (UTC)
Aw, crap on the vid timing. :-/

(Do keep after it when you get a chance, though, I want it for this year's reel! :)
Jun. 21st, 2010 12:41 pm (UTC)

I'm determined to do (at least?) one more vid for this year's reel. Hopefully DWTA, but possibly something less technically frustrating, depending on the vagaries of life. %-}
Jun. 20th, 2010 01:43 pm (UTC)
You are going to be so sick of turkey! :(

Jun. 21st, 2010 12:42 pm (UTC)
Little bit, yeah.
Jun. 20th, 2010 08:06 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it is indeed a German thing. "I remember." translates to "Ich erinnere mich." which in turn is "I remember me/myself."

It's starting to come back to me....

Edited at 2010-06-20 08:06 pm (UTC)
Jun. 21st, 2010 12:44 pm (UTC)
Yeah, French does that too - "Je me souviens." This was the exact same word repeated in different places in the sentence, so I'm thinking there must be some sort of split construction for those expressions in German.
Jun. 21st, 2010 04:05 pm (UTC)
Aw. I'm very sad about the vid. :(
Jun. 21st, 2010 04:20 pm (UTC)
It's still going to happen, just not for showing at VividCon. Frustrating, but I'll live.
Feb. 8th, 2011 07:17 pm (UTC)
Ohhh, that sounds fascinating. Especially since the Rossettis and their quasi-Renaissance dynamics fascinate me. Also, I just checked and it's in the college library so I should be able to find this pretty easily. My dad works at Smith, so I have very easy access to all obscure feminist literature in the land.

(Also, thanks for pointing me to this entry. I promise I would not have found it otherwise.)
Feb. 8th, 2011 07:26 pm (UTC)
Hooray for easy access! And yeah, I realized belatedly that scanning back through my tags doesn't necessarily mean one will actually find something in the midst of some kitchen-sink post.

I'm similarly all over the place with the tagging on my actor-blog, but there's still a lot of Lizzie babble over there, if you're curious.
Feb. 8th, 2011 07:29 pm (UTC)
My god, why did I never look her up at the Smith library before? I'm like a kid in the candy store now. Novels, plays, biographies...

Out of curiosity, have you read White Rose and the Red? I have not and it seems to draw most people more because of HD but it's at Smith and I'm really intrigued.

I'll look over there.
Feb. 8th, 2011 07:31 pm (UTC)
I vaguely think I might have heard of it? But I don't know why...
Feb. 8th, 2011 07:32 pm (UTC)
Apparently it's an unpublished HD novel about Lizzie. Beyond that I know nothing.
Feb. 8th, 2011 07:33 pm (UTC)
*unpublished during her lifetime.

Obviously it's at the library so it's published now.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )


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