47006Re: [CostaRicaLiving] Re: Move into new life
- Sep 3, 2006Hey there Thor...interesting thoughts and references.
Someone wrote that the word romantic has acquired so many meanings
that it now can mean everything and nothing, so perhaps I left that too
open to refutation by using the term. In your context, basically a
literary one (which is valid considering the original meaning of the
word as referring to translation of books into the vernacular...leading
to the concept of a "romance" or a popular novel) romaticising is free
of its negative implications. To me the main negative implication
derives from the common belief that the Romantic movement was either a
reaction to or a revolt against the ideals of the Age of Enlightenment.
I'm voting for enlightenment, I suppose. I was using the word (upon
reflection) in the context of its meaning of idealizing myths and the
mythologizing of historic events. It wasn't just Thoreau and Baudelaire
who fell into that school...German nationalism is also widely seen as
derived from romantic thought. My personal fave is Blake ("The road of
excess leads to the palace of wisdom."), but that's neither here nor there.
I use the word myth in the sense of an unreal or imaginary story,
sometimes employed to explain history. I realize that that definition
is culled, and that there are other, higher-sounding, definitions, and
that mythologizing is a popular occupation these days, but it still
carries the meaning of untruth. So sure, idealizing or romanticising
may have its uses. Politicians, demogogues, and spin docs have noticed
this as well. Still, I suspect that "romanticising indigenous cultures"
is more about untruth and selective perception than it is about a useful
paradigm (in the sense of model) to apply for the supposed good of a
We've never had a TV, and we have only 3 kids. I think it's birth
control and economics:)
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