Saturday, February 04, 2006

Olga

Most of my ventures into fiction and screenwriting have wrapped around the exploration of the affect of context on meaning, how the meaning one derives from information can change given a new understanding of its context. As an example: Olga Corbet's gymnastic dance at the '72 (?) Olympics was a brilliant display of youthful innocence. She danced, looked and smiled like a talented sweet child of twelve, perhaps pushing thirteen. She became the darling of the world. If one adds to this the knowledge that she was seventeen, that her coach kept her on a starvation diet and heavy smoking to keep her weight trim, and that he raped her on the night before the performance, one can never see the footage again without a wholly new meaning. It changes forever. This was a desperate woman, likely completely disturbed by the events of the night before, prisoner to her country and predicament.
Another: I was intrigued by Francis Ford Coppola's movie "The Conversation". The movie opens with a couple on the street, talking. The same footage is played at the end, with the context of the story in between, and the meaning of their conversation entirely changes.
There are 39 different meanings for the word 'set' in the Oxford dictionary. Meaning cannot exist without context.
The issue comes when we all come to the understanding of communication with our own value loaded contexts. Just as sight requires previous experience of distance to comprehend depth, we each interpret data to fit within our own framework of knowledge. The variability is vast, and there an be no real definitive consensual single meaning.

2 Comments:

Blogger michell said...

ok, I thought the discussion of what you did with the palindromes and the gaps therebeteween was excellent, but here, addressing the duality (plurality) of meaning as it is interpreted by the lsteners' individual circumstance, experience, and breadth of knowledge is a thought truely worth expressing, and eloquently and succinctly put at that! Word play is fantastic, I look for it everywhere, all the time. I love what you wrote.
Have you seen "What the Bleep do We Know?"" More than once the idea that the observer directly effects that observed is discussed; if you havent seen it you may ejoy it. Waking Life also. Just randon recommendations from a strange stranger :D
well done you
~ se moi

8:34 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Thanks. Welcome. I will check them out.

11:31 PM  

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