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From: "J. Schultz" <jschultz@wcnet.org>
Subject: re:(Urth) Eco's tic
Date: Fri, 28 Aug 1998 02:22:30 

Apples and Oranges
or if I may say so....   Golden Apples and Oranges

Illuminatus is "garbage" only if you are looking for an Eco book or a Woolfe
book.  Or if your looking for anything other than what it is.

I'm a huge fan of RAW.  Do I think he has the command of language that
Woolfe has?  Not on your life.  RAW's purpose in his 1000 pages is to play
with ideas and he invites you along.  The book DOES NOT continually rehash
things that the reader has already been told WITHOUT looking at the events
with a different world view.

As to your comment that all the women are present only to have sex....
All the main female characters are aspects of the Godess.  Whose religious
role is one that is sexual (as the first mother-goddess religions arguably
were)  ---This doesn't get him off the hook completely because he still is
refusing to deal with women as other individuals.

The story in Illuminatus is secondary, the characters are simply vehicles
for ideas.
RAW has the ability to write a book that causes many readers to question
their own dogmas and beliefs.  RAW deals with how we cope with the confusing
world around us by constructing our philosophies.

Eco's 'trip' is the study of 'how' we attack the unknown.  What we as humans
employ to understand the confusing world around us.  There is a slight
difference here.  The moral of Focault's P is a simple one.  If we act as if
there is a huge and ancient conspiracy then it becomes reality.  The BIG
mystery in FP is that THERE IS NO BIG MYSTERY!  However, since all those
involved BELIEVE and ACT as if there is a huge conspiracy it might as well
be true.  (If you believe there is a monster in the basement it doesn't
matter if there really is one or not.  You will act as if there is a monster
in the basement.  You will never enter the basement.  If you ever got the
courage to go in the basement every shadow would be that monster comming to
get you.  Any noise you heard would be the monster shuffling his feet.)  FP
simply says that if we believe that there is a deep, dark secret that people
will kill for---  then, people will start killing to find out the deep, dark
secret-- wheter it really exists or not.  To put it in RAW's terms  -  if
everyone believes that paper money is really worth something, then it
becomes so.  If everyone thinks that RED means stop.  Then it does.  I don't
know if Eco is asking us to question the government's authority over us, or
question the Federal Reserve, but both writers are approaching the same

Focault's P. and Illuminatus! are both warnings against dogma.
FP is not satisfying because we want to know the truth.  FP tells us what it
is not.  Illuminatus fabricates an ellaborate story that we know is not
true, but it's an answer.

Our drive to know the truth, even when applied to fiction, is so strong that
we even set up discussion groups to analyze and over analyze a piece of
fiction as if it were something in the real world that could be tested with
the Scientific Method.  : )
(last statement is not an insult, I include myself in this group)

*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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