IS FICTION DEAD?
The Poetry of Information
Gulpy consumption, but never headache?
Experiences from our daily agenda are a bricks for our dreams in night. A laboring man may not be interested in cultural artifacts; whiskey is maybe nearer to his normal, biological needs. Intellectual work, however, increases our appetite for information, and we cannot switch off our brains after working hours. Like at a power plant where the turbines cannot be turned off because returning to peak operating efficiency would take two days, we maintain our mental equipment in the stand-by position (including sleeping-time, i.e. dreams) for ready access.
Consuming information means consequently lower perception and improper perception of information. This improper reading could lead to consuming of incorrect information. Note the famous mistakes in describing history such as the legend about founders of the city of Rome, Romulus and Remus. They weren't suckled by real animal wolves "lupa". "Lupa" was at that time nickname for a prostitute. A bordello was called "lupanar". And the stepmother of these two founders of Rome made very good money in the bordello, they say, that she was able to buy to her stepsons enough land to establish the eternal city. Regardless of these fact completely false legend about wolf-mother is still good selling story.
The allure of stories, removed from our everyday life and real facts, is immemorial. Remember, what we can find in ruins in the never-finished Citadel by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry: "Sure, you said about sons how one grows up and the other is sick, and you spoke about house, but not very urgently. And you start to live when some traveller from a distant caravan unfolds mysteries, speaking about white elephants, this and that prince, and about the marriage of a woman thousands of miles away whose name you hardly knew. Or about the movement of enemies. Or, about some comet, offence, love or courage in the face of death, or about some hate against you, or about big worries. You were suddenly full of space and connected with many things and your tent -- loved and hated, threatened and saved -- gained immediate meaning. And you were in captivity to a miraculous web, which also changed you to something more spacious than you were before..." This is the secret of literature.
Talk, which puts us in touch with a thousand other things, makes us an inextricable part of the overall human construction. Never completed, always threatened with collapse. And each part depends on human individuality, that's why it is so fragile. Talk of a story is usually more interesting than experiencing the story in real life. That's why some stories are so strong that they become immortal epics and legends. And pilot of long-distance post-lines Saint-Exupéry proved that these great stories pull us away from the banalities of everyday life and our surroundings.
The non-fiction offers higher concentration of information, unlike to other forms of literature.
(to be continued)