4.0276 Responses: Codex Bibliography; IPA Fonts; Usher (3/80)

Elaine Brennan & Allen Renear (EDITORS@BROWNVM.BITNET)
Thu, 12 Jul 90 17:39:09 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 4, No. 0276. Thursday, 12 Jul 1990.

(1) Date: Wednesday, 11 July 1990 1806-EST (37 lines)
From: Bob Kraft <KRAFT@PENNDRLS>
Subject: Codex/Scroll Bibliography

(2) Date: Wed, 11 Jul 90 23:08:38 PDT (8 lines)
Subject: 4.0247 Qs: IPA Fonts

(3) Date: Wed, 11 Jul 90 17:41 PDT (35 lines)
Subject: Re: 4.0263 On Recursive Fiction

(1) --------------------------------------------------------------------
Date: Wednesday, 11 July 1990 1806-EST
From: Bob Kraft <KRAFT@PENNDRLS>
Subject: Codex/Scroll Bibliography

A forthcoming CNRS Colloquium (10-11 October 1990, Paris) should perhaps
be added to Marc Bregman's bibliographical list on Scroll/Codex, etc.,
in anticipation of the publications that will be associated with the

The title is Tablettes a ecrire de l'antiquite a l'epoque moderne
[Writing Tablets from Ancient Times to the Present]

and the papers include
Beatrice Andre and Jean-Louis de Cenival (both of the Louvre) on Tablets
from the Middle East (in French);
Colette Sirat on Wooden Tablets in the Jewish Tradition: Texts and
Documents (in French);
Joseph van Haelst on the development from a codex of tablets to the
short codex, and on Greek and Latin terms used to designate writing
tablets (in French);
John Sharpe on "The Dakhleh tablets and some codicological
considerations" (English);
William Brashear on Magical Tablets (French);
Francisca A. J. Hoogenduk on "School Exercises on Wax Tablets" (English);
David Thomas on "The Wooden Writing Tablets in Latin from Vindolanda in
North Britain" (English);
and so on to a closing paper on electronic tablets!

Write to Elisabeth Lalou, Secretary, IRHT,
40 avenue d'Iena 75116 Paris (tel 47 23 61 04).

I'll try to keep the program handy, if any HUMANISTs need more
information. Looks interesting. Most papers in French, a few in
English, and one each in German and Italian. Mostly on the ancient

Bob Kraft, Penn
(2) --------------------------------------------------------------16----
Date: Wed, 11 Jul 90 23:08:38 PDT
Subject: 4.0247 Qs: IPA Fonts

Gamma Productions of Santa Monica put out Multi-Lingual Scholar
and also offer an IPA font. Write to Gamma, 710 Wilshire Blvd, STe 609,
Santa Monica, CA 90401, Tel 213-394-8622.
Curtis Rice
(3) --------------------------------------------------------------177---
Date: Wed, 11 Jul 90 17:41 PDT
Subject: Re: 4.0263 On Recursive Fiction

Dear John: My reading of USHER is different, and after decades I
thought I had found its secret, when I was advised to give up the main
consolation of my life, my giant $5.00 cigars. I discovered that the
story was really about addiction and withdrawal, about the structure of
personality. I havent written a note, because only ex-smokers (or
poppy addicts) will understand subjectively that Roderick Usher is the
esthetic faculty (his wild improvisations on the guitar) and the person
addicted to the inspiration of...what? laudanum? morphine? and his twin
sister is Madeline, she, the substance and addiction itself, which is
laid down in the nerves. She is renounced, killed, buried, but can claw
out of her tomb and come for her "brother." (Cf Cocteau's remarkable
description of the power of opium to recall in the very bloodstream as
it were, itself, from renunciation. The ego, the personality, the
rational part of the self is the narrator, who finds usher and his body
sadly decayed. For the ego and reason never suffers change, and
cannot. After all, what is it that saves the doomed drunk or drug
addict who is strung out from the next, and fatal binge or shot...? If
the ego and reason are weak, well, then, fare thee well. read
Berryman's unfinished novel on that head, and see how his reason itself
said farewell, in despair, what is it that despairs? who? the soul? the
narrator of the story? and then leaps onto the ice from 60 feet after
blessing the world in farewell. As for recursive fiction: it is good
for a one time shot, a curiosity, like much of Hofstadter's gee whiz
logicking. It suffers from what Whitehead termed the fallacy of
misplaced concreteness. IN this case, taking the surface, the story as
told, as the object of esthetic attention. That is the trouble with the
esthetic of minimalism that has so many excited: it is on the surface
only, and yields its whole self at the first go. It has nothing more
to say, because it mea ns nothing more than its saying. Good for chat
and fun and critics who think they have found something new, but...also
vacuous, and immediately so, not in the longer run. Kessler