The term “lightness” with regards to philosophy and literature was not always a postmodern concept as Italo Calvino defines it. Lightness on. In , Italo Calvino was invited to give the following year’s Charles (This is the subject of the first lecture, “Lightness”; the other titles are. Lightness: Italo Calvino’s hope for the future of literature. A guest post by Gio Clairval July 30, Gio Clairval is an Italian-born refugee who lives in Paris and.

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At this point we should remember that the idea of the world as composed of weightless atoms is striking just because we know the weight of things so well. In Nietzschean terms, weight is life-affirming in that to live with positive intensity is to live in a way you’d be prepared to repeat.

This is defined in relation to Pullness or Garimawhich concerns worldly weight and mass. Faced with the precarious existence of tribal life—drought, sickness, evil influences—the shaman responded by ridding his body of weight and flying to another world, another level of perception, where he could find the strength to change the face of reality. The two lines are almost identical, but they express two completely different concepts. Then there is the thread of writing as a metaphor of the powder-fine substance of the world.

As I said, it is short, but there is a universe in here. To forget this, to not make time an ally, is to relinquish a weapon from a limited armoury. That’s why I try to talk as little as possible. Lightness Clare D says: He died before leaving Italy. It was as if no one could escape the inexorable stare of Medusa. Asimov imagined immense computers. In Cavalcanti the conjunction e and puts the snow on the same level as the other visions that precede and follow it: Cavalcanti is not popular with them because, although wealthy and elegant, he has refused to join in their revels—and also because his mysterious philosophy is suspected of impiety.

Being concise is different to being precise.

Lightness (philosophy) – Wikipedia

To push this contrast perhaps too far, I might say that Dante gives solidity even to the most abstract intellectual speculation, whereas Cavalcanti dissolves the concreteness of tangible experience in lines of measured rhythm, syllable by syllable, as if thought were darting out of darkness in swift lightning flashes.


Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Also, the virtue of having this as a physical book is that you can jot down your own reactions as they occur in the margins. Today every branch of calviino seems intent on demonstrating that the world is supported by the most minute entities, such as the messages of DNA, the impulses of neurons, and quarks, and neutrinos wandering through space since the beginning of time. The term “lightness” varies in usage but is differentiated from physical weight, such as “the lightness of balsa wood”.

Voyage dans la lune,Garnier-Flammarion edition, pp. This is what Milan Kundera has done with great clarity and immediacy.

When I get time whenever that is! So the title of this book is doubly misleading: But here the resemblance ends. I ligjtness relied on Cavalcanti for examples of lightness in at least three different senses. Sam Cooney is a writer of fiction and nonfiction pieces that have been published around and calgino. It seems to me that language is always used in a random, approximate, careless manner, and this distresses me unbearably. Then we have computer science.

Email required Address never made public. His point of view, he says, explains the existence of the dark matter that is supposed to hold galaxies together from an article by Dennis Overbye for the New York Times. This site uses cookies. Such ambition — or overambition — is central to literature, if we are to believe that writing is an attempt to represent the multiplicity of connections in the universe: That is, how nearly man missed being man, and life, life, and the world, the world.

The images of lightness that I seek should not fade away like dreams dissolved by the realities of present and future. I tried to find some lkghtness between the adventurous, picaresque inner rhythm that prompted me to write and ligytness frantic spectacle of the world, sometimes dramatic and sometimes grotesque.

However, at the same time, the insignificance of our decisions – our lives, or being – is unbearable. Something which does not forever recur has its brief existence, and, once it is complete, the universe goes on existing, utterly indifferent to the completed phenomenon.

You are commenting using your WordPress. This is a very short story written in in the first person, and its point of departure is plainly a real situation in that winter of warfare, the worst for the Austrian Empire: Here also we find the equality of all existing things that I spoke of in regard ihalo Lucretius and Ovid.

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Literature remains alive only if we set ourselves immeasurable goals, far beyond all hope of achievement.

Soft and clear is the night and without wind, and quietly over the roofs and in the gardens rests the moon, and far away reveals every peaceful mountain. He saw the world divided into pairs of opposites: We might say that throughout the centuries two opposite tendencies have competed in literature: Clarke let enormous lkghtness fall from the sky.

Please don’t think that my reaction is the result of intolerance towards my neighbor: But ligghtness is the software that gives the orders, acting on the outside world and on machines lihtness exist only as functions of software and evolve so that they can work out ever more complex programs. Second, there is the narration of a train of thought or psychological process in which subtle and imperceptible elements are at work, or any kind of description that involves a high degree of abstraction.

Lightness: Italo Calvino’s hope for the future of literature

Then we have computer science. His novel The Unbearable Lightness of Being is in reality a bitter confirmation of the Ineluctable Weight of Living, not only in the situation of desperate and all-pervading oppression that has been the fate of his hapless country, but in a human condition common to us all, however infinitely more fortunate we may be.

This is not about technology; it is far older. Lightness, for example, whose virtues I have tried to illustrate here. Now he prepares to do what any of us would do after such an awful chore—he wants to wash his hands. The strength is not in the object itself, but in what it embodies.