[lit-ideas] Re: Interpretation and Elision

> [Original Message]
> From: Eric Yost <mr.eric.yost@xxxxxxxxx>
> To: Lit-Ideas <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Date: 12/6/2005 6:37:04 PM
> Subject: [lit-ideas] Interpretation and Elision
>
> Was thinking about the relationship between elision and 
> interpretation.
>
> If I say, "Brahms is too serious for my taste," I'm stating an 
> opinion that is in part an *elision* of Brahms, omitting 
> compositions like the Hungarian Dances, the waltzes, the string 
> serenades.  Or if I say, "Chris Rock's comedy is racist," I'm 
> stating an opinion that elides all the nonracist Chris Rock 
> comedy. To be even more extreme, if I say the second George 
> Herbert poem, "Love" is about love, then I'm eliding all the 
> other parts of the poem, for example, the fire symbolism.
>
> Can you really interpret anything without eliding part of it?
>

There's no way to assume or see the whole of anything so I would say it's
impossible to interpret anything without omitting part(s) of it.  I
recently read three stories by Hemingway.  In all three stories, plus one I
know of, the protagonist dies.  Obviously death was on Hemingway's mind,
given his suicide.  Even so, the deaths of the protagonists (of himself)
are only a part of what Hemingway was working out.  I can't imagine a
complex work that is entirely graspable, including real people and life in
general.  




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