Against the Day Weblog

December 7, 2006


Filed under: Notes — basileios @ 11:14 am

‘Only hayseeds walk into mirrors kid’.

Well here’s a coincidence. A couple years back I wrote a short story based around the idea that hoi polloi a century ago did not have access to mirrors – large mirrors especially – so the image of the self was totally different from the one we have access to now.

Could it be that its no coincidence that psychoanalysis started just around the period when mirrors started getting accessible to all?



  1. I went to a lecture by Paolo Soleri, where he commented about how humans, for most of our earliest civilization, did not have mirrors.
    They could not see their face-and this made them less egotistical
    and self-centered.
    Our present relationship to mirrors is based on a class division
    that forces us to primp before a mirror to present ourselves to the world as a physical appearance.
    I think Pynchon uses this refraction, and duality of our image, as a device to show how our identity is formed, and how his characters
    reflect this mirroring process.

    Comment by sevenpointman — December 7, 2006 @ 7:32 pm | Reply

  2. that’s what i thought as well that is why i mentioned it. The amazing thing is that this duality actually existed in other Pynchon works as well – in millions of bipolar situations that seem to be blamed for many things – but i must say i never noticed it before like that.

    Comment by Basileios — December 8, 2006 @ 9:48 am | Reply

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