Jane & the present
Posted by Valerie Mc. on January 09, 1998 at 20:46:35:
In response to Bridging the past, written by gkb on January 09, 1998 at 19:32:56
] When I have read the poetry of Walt Whitman and felt as if he were speaking directly across the distance to me, I have had the opposite feeling--that the visionaries of the past were way ahead of us--so divorced from their own time, that we are their true companions of the spirit....?
Well, I was thinking at first of the obstacles to her comprehending the physical reality of the whole thing. (Your first assignment - show Jane the keyboard. Explain why the letters are out of order.) But of course that could be overcome by a few years of intensive schooling (sorry, we old s.f. readers get awfully practical and pedantic about questions like this).
Though of course you are right that her intelligence and wit are not bound to any place and time. Her clear observation, balanced sense of irony, self-awareness and devotion to perfection put her way ahead of most of us and probably always will.
But I still have a delicious vision of Jane suddenly comprehending that she is worshipped by literally hordes of loose-living, atheistic (by her lights), berouged, loudmouthed, pants-wearing,working females...I don't think we were quite the audience she had in mind...
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