“The Commonwealth of the Future”: a new episode coming up in the slowLiterature web series
illustrations by Albert Robida (The End of Books by Octave Uzanne, 1894) | photo by José Tomé & tangiblemode | design by tangiblemode
Photo: Gerardo Garcia for tangiblemode
Who has ever really listened to a word?
When it comes to listening to words, ears commonly tend to focus on a limited range of decoding processes. From meaning to subliminal tone and intensity clues, most of the cognitive effort goes into ‘understanding’ the speaker. From a broader aural point of view, that’s quite a poor listening, even for a single spoken word. Spoken words are not just symbols –such as those flat, typed words on a screen or on paper– but real things, physical objects, living events in our 3-dimensional world.
Just a starting point. You shouldn’t fully trust the title. Not what it seems. You know it well: titles tend to be unfair, unfair to the overall content and misleading to people. Deceptive in both ways, whether enticements or turn-offs. Let’s just keep going.
Welcome to slowLiterature, an iterative trip from scattered atom-words to -somewhat- realised meaning.
Again, don’t think of ‘slow’ as necessarily slow and forget about the commonplaces ethically and aesthetically linked to it – just a title, a potentially misleading label like any other.
. . .
Written text can work either as core content or, at a more basic level, as a seed – a core-generator giving place to an utterly different kind of matter. Input-text would thus be transformed into a new type of hybrid content, quite often involving perceptual dimensions beyond the traditional act of reading. At this point, text understood as ‘core-content’ might just disappear or perhaps dynamically melt into a broader object. For the input-text itself, shifting from a central position within the content does not necessarily mean an irreversible loss of substance since it could potentially re-emerge as a neat text-object populating moments/regions/layers, either backgrounded or perceptually foregrounded within the new hybrid: a multimodal object.