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  •  Men's Stories (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cfk, Monsieur Georges

    I did some research on Hungarian folktale traditions and it seems that men would tell stories at the blacksmith's and in the barracks as soldiers.  Those were the places for male to male storytelling.  

    In Hungary there was also the spinning room where stories were exchanged among men and women as the women spun on winter nights.  It was also a place where the young ones courted.  Kodaly wrote an opera called "The Spinning Room" which is worth a listen.

    I believe there is also a male tradition of storytelling in public marketplaces and cafes but haven't examined that enough.  Perhaps that is more an Eastern tradition than a Western one.

    One well known source of "fairy tale" fodder is the Panchatantra from India, a complex knot of nested stories, mostly animal fables, Aesop on steroids.  Lots of juice there.

    Many of these fairy and folktales are simple motifs combined in a variety of different ways to produce new variations on old themes.  It is a little like the use of set-pieces and epithets as aide de memoir as postulated by Alfred Lord in The Singer of Tales.  Stith Thompson and his work with parsing folktale plots into numbered themes is also part of this tradition.  I don't know if there are only The Seven Basic Plots as the recent book puts it but I do know that there is one we all share:  we are born, we live, we die.

    Solar is civil defense. Video of my small scale solar experiments at solarray.

    by gmoke on Wed Aug 15, 2012 at 10:37:27 PM PDT

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    •  Kaku (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Limelite

      in Physics of the Future has been talking about humans someday not dying or living 500 years and it is very scary stuff.

      Join us at Bookflurries-Bookchat on Wednesday nights 8:00 PM EST

      by cfk on Wed Aug 15, 2012 at 10:42:02 PM PDT

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      •  Practical Immortality (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cfk

        One day, I happened to be walking through the Infinite Corridor of MIT with Marvin Minsky on one side and Eric Drexler on the other.  I asked them what they'd say if they had five minutes on nation-wide TV.  Drexler demurred but Minsky said he'd like to tell people about practical immortality, the ability to live as long as you wanted with diamond tendons and carbon fiber muscles, to be able to spend as much time as you wanted satisfying your curiosity and discovering new things.

        My stomach dropped away from me and I felt real disgust.  My reaction to Minsky's immortality was that this was his response to fear.  I can't imagine anything that would freeze the world in a contorted and constricted way more than practical immortality.  Ray Kurzweil is doing his best now to make it happen as are many Extropians.  Perhaps they'll do it but it will be a disaster.  The first people to become immortal will be the worst ones, the richest.  Imagine the Koch Bros as immortals, as they, I suspect, already do. Not a pretty picture.  Who would have babies in a world of immortality?  Where would new thoughts and ideas come from?  What would be the pace of change?

        When my father was dying, he looked at death as an adventure.  He wasn't in pain and had lived a good eighty plus years.  He'd always been a traveler and was excited by the idea of what this next, last journey would be.  "What was it going to be like?" he wanted to know.  I think death is a part of life, a necessity and hope that I will have my father's adventurous attitude when I come face to face with the Reaper.  I hope I'll be like ripe wheat.

        Solar is civil defense. Video of my small scale solar experiments at solarray.

        by gmoke on Fri Aug 17, 2012 at 09:51:36 PM PDT

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        •  I agree with you 100% (0+ / 0-)

          I hadn't thought of this:

          Imagine the Koch Bros as immortals, as they, I suspect, already do. Not a pretty picture.
          That is even scarier.

          Join us at Bookflurries-Bookchat on Wednesday nights 8:00 PM EST

          by cfk on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 06:55:20 AM PDT

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          •  Bug Jack Barron (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cfk

            Norman Spinrad's sf book about one attempt to achieve practical immortality.  It is also about TV and the media culture.  Costa-Gavras once optioned it for a movie but it never happened.

            Solar is civil defense. Video of my small scale solar experiments at solarray.

            by gmoke on Sun Aug 19, 2012 at 11:58:11 AM PDT

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