Monday, January 21, 2008

Fragments and Comedy in Lists

I really liked how Anne Carson blended poetry and prose into this story. I also liked how she took a mythic tale and put it in modern time. But, for me, the most interesting parts, and probably the most creative, were pgs. 9-14 and 18-20: the sections called "Fragments of Stesichoros" and the "Appendix C." In the "Fragments" section, there was no punctuation, rather a capital letter of a word in the middle of the sentence signified a new line/thought. In grade school we're taught that fragments are something to avoid, but in the creative world they're embraced. I thought pgs 18-20 were interesting how it was in a list format, making it easier to follow the story. I also thought this section was comical because of the continuing inner debating by the speaker. The way I heard this section in my head reminded me of a modern crime report.

Although my overall opinion of the book is still to be determined, I appreciate the research the author did to turn this mythic tale into a modern idea.

For my creative piece, I want to use a theme of this book that is about how the main character is red living in a black and white world, and the contrast that creates.


Jenni Saathoff said...

I also really enjoyed the back and forth subjectivity of Appendix C. I think this section added to the theme of subjectivity in the book, for throughout this entire section Anne Carson says things could be one way and then gives its antonym and states that could be true as well. I think this forces the reader to decide what to believe on their own terms.

Lily Hoang said...

I have to admit, the first time I picked up _Autobiography of Red_, the Stesichoros section did not wow me, particularly the opening. It took a couple more reads for me to get past the first few pages, but once I did, once I reached "Red Meat" and the Appendices, I was in love.

But, about Appendix C, what I understood from this section was the notion of contingency and arbitrarity, which isn't a real word, but I'm a writer and so I deem this a new word.

Furthermore, I find that Appendix C is almost an instruction guide for this book, as if to say that at each moment, there will be a decision and that decision will change the course of Geryon's world. We, as readers, after reading this appendix, are left wondering "what if?" at the edge of every line, every pause, every space between words.