Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Pleasure, joy, and end of all things

Zadie Smith limns the line between pleasure and joy, a bit of an unclear distinction, for sure, but one that she characterises as the difference between the background melody of life and the high crescendo. For clarity, joy is the latter, pleasure the former.

The special particle of 'joy' she experienced six times - half in states of love and twice on drugs - and she meanders a bit after that, and does not pass judgement on one or the other, except to say that her take on the collapse of joy into mourning after a loss (she quotes Julian Barnes, 'it hurts just as much as it is worth') made me think of the Harvard Brain Scientist (mark the Capitals) who under a joyful coma came to copy and paste the vague ether he felt into a fuzzy faith.

Quite why 'final joy' tends to lead to strange cold arms is unclear to me, but I'm sure Harvard have their best brains on it. Russia is preparing, are you?

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