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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

7 kinds of relation

In a dream my students were doing an exercise where they had to compare Lorca to three other writers. When I got up and got in the shower I couldn't reconstruct their brilliant presentations, but I remember Chesterton figured in somehow. I've never read him so don't ask me.

In the shower I decided there were 7 kind of people you could cite in relation to Lorca. Imagine this charted on a huge poster, with Lorca at the center. I think I had 8 categories but one disappeared by the time I got to my office.

1. Influences flowing into him. Góngora, Darío, Nietzsche, Chekov...

2. People he influenced. Spicer, Motherwell, Valente...

You'll notice on your chart that there could be a huge spread in both directions.

3. Lorca's immediate contemporaries. Guillén, Cernuda, Neruda, Dalí, Falla...

4. Lorca's contemporaries that he didn't know about, or that didn't know about him. Pound, Pessoa, Cavafy... People engaged in a parallel enterprise.

So the chart expands horizontally too.

5. Writers with no direct relation of influence or simultaneity, but that you'd still want to compare Lorca to.

6. Lorca critics and scholars.

7. Other critics and theorists, who never thought about Lorca, that you might want to cite to make other points about Lorca.

Now put another writer at the center of the chart.


Andrew Shields said...

It's like the charts that outline the history of jazz.

Drew M. Loewe said...

Looks like a fruitful assignment and useful in other disciplines. For instance, I'd put Kenneth Burke at the center or Stephen Toulmin or.... Thanks for posting.