13 abr. 2011


Aphorisms, proverbs, the other kind of texts that I am becoming interested in can have a sententious, apodictic, self-assured, or didactic tone. I can understand someone who doesn't like the genre at all for this reason. The poet Jorge Riechmann told me once that he didn't distrusted aphorisms because of their apodictic nature. I was a bit confused because he had just handed me a copy of his book of original aphorisms.

I can understand not likely the particular sensibility behind a certain author of aphorisms. As with any genre, there are differences in sensibility. I just ordered a copy of Christopher Maurer's translation of Gracián. This book (Maurer's translation) actually became a best seller, because people love pithy didacticism. Not everyone, of course, but a lot of people.

Everyone has proverbs in his or her vocabulary, even if they are only mottoes from the world of sports of advertising or the self-help culture, or jokes from Mark Twaiin like "Golf: a good walk spoiled." It would be interesting to do some experimental research on this, to see what people know actively and passively.

1 comentario:

Andrew Shields dijo...

Jonathan goes all empirical! :-)