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  1. Subscribershavixmironline
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    19 Feb '21 05:55
    @duchess64 said
    Teinosuke replied to Shavixmir.

    To look at it from another angle, Richard Wagner was anti-Jewish in his life.
    Israel has asserted that's enough reason to ban his music from being played there.
    But I don't perceive any evidence of anti-Jewishness in his music itself, though
    I suppose that some critics will do their utmost to stretch to claim that it's there.

    Most pe ...[text shortened]... because he
    wrote (he may have denied it) anti-Jewish articles while living under Nazi occupation.
    Oh. Nice.
    I mean, we’re on about Heart of Darkness, you bring up Wagner, who’s music is pumped over the attacking helicopter’s speakers in Apocalypse Now.

    If you didn’t do that deliberately, then this is one step closer to proving cosmic alighning.

    No. I don’t know if that’s a thing. But it sounds like it could be.
  2. Subscribershavixmironline
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    19 Feb '21 05:56
    @teinosuke said
    While my point is, the actual attitudes of the historic Joseph Conrad are irrelevant! He left us a body of work, and when Chinua Achebe said that Joseph Conrad was racist, he primarily meant "Joseph Conrad" in the sense of the books associated with that name. Achebe made this quite explicit:

    "Whatever Conrad's problems were, you might say he is now safely dead. Quite tru ...[text shortened]... ist. And that is something I can deduce from the novel; indeed, I could deduce it from nothing else!
    Does it matter that Heart of Darkness portrays racist attitudes?

    In hindsight, from out enlightened perspective, does that not actually make the book better? Like looking into the darkness of past attitudes to see where we are now and how far we still must go?

    Is it not symbolic of a journey each of us must take before discovering the rot beneath the glamour of self-created narratives? Pricking through our own biases to accept we’re just a pawn in the game?

    If you seek racism, sexism, etc. in literature, you will find it. That doesn’t make the work less powerful and it doesn’t reflect on anything but our own morality.

    And in that, already, awaits great moments of learning.
  3. SubscriberEarl of Trumpsonline
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    19 Feb '21 08:35
    @Duchess64 - So if there's a discussion about a new Chinese aircraft, someone might joke,
    "Which Western or Russian aircraft is this supposed to be a copy of?"


    Actually, the new joke would be about how many Uighur slaves it took to build it.
  4. Zugzwang
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    19 Feb '21 10:392 edits
    @earl-of-trumps said
    @Duchess64 - So if there's a discussion about a new Chinese aircraft, someone might joke,
    "Which Western or Russian aircraft is this supposed to be a copy of?"


    Actually, the new joke would be about how many Uighur slaves it took to build it.
    Note that Earl of Trumps has NOT objected to capitalism profiting from forced labor in US prisons.

    The extremely ignorant Earl of Trumps likely believes that Egypt's pyramids were
    built by Jewish slaves because that's what American pop culture tells him.
    In reality, the pyramids were built by skilled workers who usually took pride in what they made.

    Modern aircraft are very complex and typically require careful work by highly skilled workers.
    It would be absurdly counterproductive to turn loose any unskilled workers,
    particularly if under compulsion, upon anything as demanding as a modern aircraft.

    Many racist white people find it far too painful to accept that the hated 'racially inferior'
    Chinese could do anything better than they, so they resort to desperate self-deceptions.
  5. Joined
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    19 Feb '21 11:242 edits
    @duchess64 said
    To look at it from another angle, Richard Wagner was anti-Jewish in his life.
    Israel has asserted that's enough reason to ban his music from being played there.
    But I don't perceive any evidence of anti-Jewishness in his music itself, though
    I suppose that some critics will do their utmost to stretch to claim that it's there.

    Most people don't care that much about wha ...[text shortened]... he died in 1883).
    The only reason why people care about Wagner at all is because his music endures.
    I agree that it's hard to find evidence of anti-Semitism in Wagner's music, or even mostly in the plots of his operas. A number of critics now seem to take it as an article of faith that Beckmesser (in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg) is supposed to be an anti-Semitic stereotype, and the recent Glyndebourne production actually made the character up to look like Wagner's Jewish contemporary, Meyerbeer (who assisted Wagner at an early stage of his career, and whom Wagner later turned spectacularly against). But on a literal level, the character of Beckmesser is a member of a guild in medieval Nuremberg, and thus must be Christian.

    Israel never actually "banned" Wagner's music. There is a taboo on performing his operas there due to their associations with Nazism.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wagner_controversies#Wagner's_music_in_Israel

    Wagner's operas have never been staged in the modern State of Israel, and the few public instrumental performances that have occurred have provoked much controversy.

    Despite Wagner's known writings against Jews, there was no opposition to his music in the early Zionist movement and its founders; Theodor Herzl, the founder of Zionism, was an avid admirer of Wagner's music. The Palestine Orchestra, founded in 1936 by Bronisław Huberman in what is now the state of Israel (and which became the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra), 'during its first two years ... programme[d] several works by Richard Wagner who was recognised as one of the great Western composers despite the well-known fact that he had been a fanatical anti-Semite'. However the orchestra banished his works from its repertoire after Kristallnacht in 1938 (to be followed shortly after by the exclusion of works of Richard Strauss).

    Although Wagner's works are broadcast on Israeli government-owned radio and television stations, attempts to stage public performances in Israel have raised protests, including protests from Holocaust survivors. In 1981 Zubin Mehta, as an encore at an orchestral concert in Tel-Aviv, played extracts from Tristan und Isolde, after offering those who wished (including two members of the orchestra who had asked to be excused) the opportunity to leave. Despite a few vocal protests, most of the audience stayed to the end of the piece. In 1992, Daniel Barenboim programmed works by Wagner at a concert of the Israel Philharmonic, but this was cancelled after protests, although a rehearsal was opened to the public. The first documented public Israeli Wagner concerts were in 2000, when the Holocaust survivor Mendi Rodan conducted the Siegfried Idyll in Rishon LeZion, and in August 2001 when a concert conducted by Barenboim in Tel Aviv included as an encore an extract from Tristan und Isolde, which divided the audience between applause and protest. A concert with works by Wagner was announced for 18 June 2012 in Tel Aviv; however these plans were abandoned after protests.


    I once met a doctoral student whose PhD thesis had been on productions of The Merchant of Venice in the modern state of Israel, focusing on the circumstances in which it appeared permissible to stage the play there. I thought at the time that this was one of the most fascinating topics for a thesis in the arts that I'd ever heard of!
  6. Zugzwang
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    19 Feb '21 11:40
    @teinosuke said
    I agree that it's hard to find evidence of anti-Semitism in Wagner's music, or even mostly in the plots of his operas. A number of critics now seem to take it as an article of faith that Beckmesser (in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg) is supposed to be an anti-Semitic stereotype, and the recent Glyndebourne production actually made the character up to look like Wagner's Jewi ...[text shortened]... me that this was one of the most fascinating topics for a thesis in the arts that I'd ever heard of!
    "Israel never actually "banned" Wagner's music. There is a taboo on performing
    his operas there due to their associations with Nazism."
    --Teinosuke

    I already knew that Wagner's music has been played in public a few times in Israel.
    I wrote 'banned' because I was in a hurry and did not feel like taking more time
    to write a detailed nuanced explanation.

    For whatever it's worth, my former voice teacher (who had been an opera singer in Italy)
    liked to suggest (in jest) that I consider training to become a Wagnerian singer (which fach?).
    I have (or had) a big voice for my physical size, but I don't have that much size.
    So I doubt that I have enough heft to sustain a Wagenerian role without losing my power of speech!
  7. Joined
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    19 Feb '21 11:524 edits
    @shavixmir said
    Does it matter that Heart of Darkness portrays racist attitudes?

    Well, I think it does matter, but not in the sense that it invalidates the work or means that we shouldn't read it now. It matters in the sense that the implicit or explicit ideological perspective of a work of literature is one of the things that readers ought to try and understand.

    In hindsight, from out enlightened perspective, does that not actually make the book better? Like looking into the darkness of past attitudes to see where we are now and how far we still must go?

    That's one way of looking at it; however, I don't want to look at the past merely to explore "the darkness of past attitudes" either. Sometimes I look to past attitudes in the hope that they will shed light!

    In general, one of the reasons I read books or poems or plays written a hundred or four hundred or seven hundred or two thousand years ago is in part to access different perspectives on the world. In some cases (as when I encounter in classic literature the racism or sexism that was widespread in the past), that does indeed make me think that in some ways we have progressed.

    But in other cases, I feel that we fall short of the values incarnated in the classics. I wonder if anyone in the modern world has so strong a sense of duty as Dorothea Brooke in George Eliot's Middlemarch, or Newland Archer in Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence. I wonder how Dante, with his loathing of hypocrisy, venality and corruption, would have skewered the politics of the Western world in our time. I wonder what Sophocles, the first person to dramatise the struggle of the individual conscience against the dicates of state authority, would have said about Putin or Erdoğan or Xi.

    Sometimes the most way to approach the great writers of the past is not to judge them, but to reflect on how they would have judged us.
  8. SubscriberEarl of Trumpsonline
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    19 Feb '21 20:26
    @Duchess64
    The extremely ignorant Earl of Trumps likely believes that Egypt's pyramids were
    built by Jewish slaves because that's what American pop culture tells him.


    Well, you're just a damm fool and a liar. American pop culture says no such thing

    There were no slaves, least of all Jewish slaves. Pyramid building took place in a span of two thousands of years, not 100 years of Jewish slavery.

    what a maroon.
  9. SubscriberEarl of Trumpsonline
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    19 Feb '21 20:29
    @Duchess64 - Modern aircraft are very complex and typically require careful work by highly skilled workers.
    It would be absurdly counterproductive to turn loose any unskilled workers,


    Yeah but Chinese aircraft aren't that complex. The Chinese can let unskilled laborers build them.
  10. Zugzwang
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    19 Feb '21 21:221 edit
    @earl-of-trumps said
    @Duchess64
    The extremely ignorant Earl of Trumps likely believes that Egypt's pyramids were
    built by Jewish slaves because that's what American pop culture tells him.


    Well, you're just a damm fool and a liar. American pop culture says no such thing

    There were no slaves, least of all Jewish slaves. Pyramid building took place in a span of two thousands of years, not 100 years of Jewish slavery.

    what a maroon.
    Earl of Trump shows his utter ignorance of the Hollywood epic film 'The Ten Commandments',
    where Egypt's pyramids are depicted as being built *exclusively* by Jewish slaves.
    US major network television shows that long film every year (usually around Easter).
  11. Zugzwang
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    19 Feb '21 21:24
    @earl-of-trumps said
    @Duchess64 - Modern aircraft are very complex and typically require careful work by highly skilled workers.
    It would be absurdly counterproductive to turn loose any unskilled workers,


    Yeah but Chinese aircraft aren't that complex. The Chinese can let unskilled laborers build them.
    Earl of Trump keeps showing that he's a racist idiot.

    China's the first country outside the USA to develop a fifth generation fighter, the Chengdu J-20.
    Russia developed the fifth generation Sukhoi Su-57 later.
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