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How it evolved, what we do with it, futures; And otherwise interesting stuff
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The Believer - The Codex Seraphinianus

The Believer - The Codex Seraphinianus | cognition | Scoop.it
From the Believer magazine.
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from text:

 

Endowed with the power to evoke a world in which the syntax of things is subverted, the Serafinian writing must hide, beneath the mystery of its indecipherable surface, a more profound mystery touching on the internal logic of language and thought. The lines that connect the images of this world tangle and cross; the confusion of the visual attributes gives birth to monsters, Serafini’s teratological universe. But the teratology itself implicates a logic which appears to us to, turn by turn, flower and disappear, at the same time giving us the sense that the words are carefully traced back to the point of the quill. Like Ovid, and his Metamorphoses, Serafini believes in the contiguity and permeability of all the domains of being.

 

Translation to English from French (translating Italo Calvino's Italian Introduction to an edition of THE CODEX SERAPHINIANUS
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Surrealist-Expressionist Mash-Up: Alfred Kubin, Decadents, Max Brod, Franz Blei, The First Hour After Death, and Last Drink Bird Head

Surrealist-Expressionist Mash-Up: Alfred Kubin, Decadents, Max Brod, Franz Blei, The First Hour After Death, and Last Drink Bird Head | cognition | Scoop.it
"The characteristic feature of this strange art is that it attempts to depict the extrasensory, to provide symbols for the mysterious forces to which we are subjected in our daily lives but which w...
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Thi s short "story" by Jeff Vandermeer, included in City of Saints and Madmen is a gem (as is the whole book).

 

"In the first hour after death, the room is so still that every sound holds a terrible clarity, like the tap of a knife against glass. The soft pad of shoes as someone walks away and closes the door is profoundly solid—each short footstep weighted, distinct. The body lies against the floor, the sightless eyes staring down into the wood as if some answer has been buried in the grain. The back of the head is mottled by the shadows of the trees that sway outside the open window. "

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codex seraphinianus

codex seraphinianus | cognition | Scoop.it
in the late 70s italian architect, illustrator and industrial designer luigi serafini made a book, an encyclopedia of unknown, parallel world. it's about 360-380 pages. it is written in an unknown language, using an unknown alphabet. it took him 30 month to complete that masterpiece that many …
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more here: http://codexseraphinianus.weebly.com/

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Novel Finding: Reading Literary Fiction Improves Empathy: Scientific American

Novel Finding: Reading Literary Fiction Improves Empathy: Scientific American | cognition | Scoop.it
The types of books we read may affect how we relate to others
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When they read excerpts of genre fiction, such as Danielle Steel’s The Sins of the Mother, their test results were dually insignificant. However, when they read literary fiction, such as The Round House by Louise Erdrich, their test results improved markedly—and, by implication, so did their capacity for empathy. 

 

...Literary fiction, by contrast, focuses more on the psychology of characters and their relationships. “Often those characters’ minds are depicted vaguely, without many details, and we’re forced to fill in the gaps to understand their intentions and motivations,” Kidd says. This genre prompts the reader to imagine the characters’ introspective dialogues. This psychological awareness carries over into the real world, which is full of complicated individuals whose inner lives are usually difficult to fathom.

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