Screenshot from 悪い奴ほどよく眠る (The Bad Sleep Well) by A. Kurosawa (1960)
To be honest, I am not fully sure where I am going with this first of two articles on potential Applied Spinozism; the possibility to read the bodies depicted in the cinema of Akira Kurosawa through the philosophy of Spinoza is not necessarily obvious (he is usually more associated with authors like Dostoevsky or Shakespeare) and my interpretation of it might be somehow shallow and incomplete. I suppose however that good ideas are based on intuitions and, for this reason, the latter should be explored!
Having watched an important amount of films made by Kurosawa these last four years, I noticed that we often see in them one or two characters who are struggling to climb up an earth slope. That is the case in The Bad Sleep Well (see above), The Hidden Fortress (1958), Rashomon (1950), High and Low (1963) and probably in more that I forgot or did not watch. The almost obsessive care that Kurosawa takes to film those scenes that vary in their length, lead us to think that there might be something important to be observed in them. These scenes do not bring anything to the plot in terms of additional information and an inattentive reading of them could let us think that a flat land would pretty much depict the same action but again the slope seems to be a crucial element in Kurosawa’s cinematographic (and therefore conceptual) toolbox.
A few months ago, I was fortunate enough to have access to the short film “…Would Have Been My Last Complaint” created by Camille Lacadée (see her guest writer essay as an inventory for this project) and François Roche for their [eIf/bʌt/c] (Institute for Contingent Scenarios) with the collaboration of Ezio Blasetti, Stephan Heinrich and a small team of people from all over the world (see the credits at the end)
The film is now visible online (see also at the end of this article) which will allow many viewers to consider a work in which neither architecture nor cinema is “enslaved” to the other, but rather they collaborate at their best. The architecture itself has been thought and built by the film’s team, but could not really unfold its essence without the narrative and expressive means developed by the film.
Photograph of the exhibition The Crystal World by Cyprien Gaillard at PS1
The Crystal World is the first-solo exhibition in New York of French artist Cyprien Gaillard. It is currently displayed at MoMA PS1 and gathers a very interesting collection of films, photographs and artifacts, all of which deserve to spend an important amount of time on. I wanted however to focus on one specific film that occupies the largest room of the exhibit. Entitled Artefacts (2011), this short movie was shot on a phone then transferred to a 35mm film. The cinematographic projector and its mythical sound, placed in the middle of the room, already participate to the composition of a landscape of artifacts both inside and outside the screen. The film itself is a document filmed in occupied Iraq on the tracks of the ancient and the new Babylon. The difference of scale between the gigantic ziggurats and the American soldiers discovering the architectural treasures of the old Babylon is striking. Iraq is somehow anthropomorphizes through its heritage and the occupation soldiers cannot help but to be humbled by its grandeur.
In Artefacts, the ancient ziggurats also dialog with the monumental symbols of Saddam Hussein’s reign. Baghdad looks like the new Babylon and again, brings a scale that is unknown to the spectator of the American militarized spectacle of rockets in the city’s night sky. Similarly C.Gaillard develops a visual correspondance between old Babylonian museum artifacts with a multitude of bulldozers and aggregated broken cars. The repetitive score reinforces the quasi-hypnotic characteristics of the film and adds an ambiguous dimension as the sound is part of the song Babylon by David Gray that U.S. soldiers were using on some Abu Ghraib prisoners as a form of torture.
3d reconstitution of Israeli intelligence data from The Gatekeepers (2012)
I recently watched the documentary The Gatekeepers by Dror Moreh (2012), which gathers six former heads of the Shin Bet, Israel’s domestic secret service agency in a sort of reconstitution of Israel’s military operations in the West Bank and Gaza since 1967. Remarkably enough, the six of them are extremely critical of the policies they had to implement as they evidently constitute punctual tactics rather than long term strategies. The interesting twisting moment in this regard since to be Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination in 1995 when it became clear that an important part of Israelis were not open to any form of compromise vis a vis the Zionist colonialist dream.
However satisfactory and probably helpful it is to listen to those six gentlemen who embodied one of the most powerful position in the realms of Israeli military operations from 1980 to 2011 (only one director is missing in the film within this period), it is actually tragic to observe that such opinions from them come after their retirement or worse, that they do not have any impact on the government’s policy when they were in office. From here, what seems to be a hopeful message of mind evolution can be interpreted, in the contrary, as a tragic perpetuation of an unacceptable situation regardless of the protagonists’ opinion on it.
Interpreting the problem based on opinions, polls, compromises, efforts etc. as it is usually considered (especially in Europe where people keeps considering this conflict in a very strict symmetry) might therefore be the wrong way to look at things. Similarly, getting indignation from videos or news of IDF soldiers punching a Western activist or a Palestinian kid being beaten up by some Israeli bullies in East Jerusalem and other various unjust punctual events is simply not enough as this same indignation did not nothing to change the status quo of the last forty-five years. What we need to understand and act upon is the system that makes those events possible if not encouraged.
El ángel exterminador (1962) is a film by Luis Buñuel in which the group of main characters are stuck for weeks in a living room after a urbane dinner. Nothing visually seems to prevent them from actually exiting the living room but for a mysterious reason none of them seems to try to actually get out despite the fact that they are close from dying from hunger.
This narrative is a good subject of investigation for the theory often attempted here (thank you Nick for pointing that out) according to which architecture has a fundamental power on the bodies. Of course, in that case the living room does not appear as a prison as the large double door at its entrance remains open all along the film but we can, once again, interrogate ourselves about the power that the line drawn by the architect carries in itself.
What is a door after all? Isn’t it simply an apparatus that organize architecture’s porosity or, in other words, a device that control the carceral characteristics of a room. After all, a prison always have a door. A locked door is nothing else than a wall for which (most of the time) the human body cannot develop a sufficient effort to modify or destroy it. Each interior space (aka room), traced by the architect as a continuous closed line is a prison en puissance (“in power”, “potentially”). On a side note, I recently learned that the word “prisoner” has the interesting characteristic to be written 囚 in Chinese and Japanese. Whoever has been learning the very basics of Chinese characters will recognize 人 i.e. a person, surrounded by a continuous and closed line. As often, those characters are fascinating by their minimal representation of their meaning.
Leos Carax in his own film, Holy Motors (2012)
An intuition I (too) briefly explored in May 2011 though an article entitled The Paradigm of Modern Cinema: The Cinematographic Introspection (Godard, Fellini, Truffaut, Assayas & Hansen-Love) was attributing (again this is just an intuition) the key element of modernity in art to the ability it had to introspect itself thought its very existence. The examples I then gave were quite literal as they were films that were dramatizing the very act of film making. A more recent movie motivates me to attempt to explore this topic a bit more: Holy Motors by Leos Carax (2012). Because this film approaches the introspection in a more indirect way than the previously quoted others, it might give us a clue about what makes this modern method interesting and expressive.
In Holy Motors, the main character embodied by Denis Lavant is followed during one (evidently typical) day of his life in which he goes from “appointment” to “appointment”. The latter constitutes as many roles he incarnates like an actor would in front of the camera. However, there is no other camera here than the one that we find in each film, invisible, and which allow us, the spectator to watch the movie. That is how L.Carax progressively blurs the limits between reality (in the film) and fiction (again, in the film) in a clear manifesto for this ambiguity. In doing so, we are not only wandering/wondering in the realms of representation but, more importantly, we are being questioned about our very human condition. This is not to say, of course, that we all play a role thus perpetually hiding of our “true self”. Rather, it questions the fact that what we really are might be the sum of the point of views that the otherness develops on us.
La Commune (de Paris, 1871)
by Peter Watkins
(see also an old article
about Punishment Park) filmed in 1999 is the absolute reference for the NY Commune project as it addresses the question of the Paris Commune through a cinematographic work being itself a democratic construction. This film is basing its plot on a historical event and its reconstitution in order to question the contemporaneity of the class struggle. In order to do so, it limits its setting to a warehouse in the North of Paris, films the action through an anachronistic documentary crew and construct itself in very long shots during which the (mostly non-professional) actors express themselves in a contemporary language while improvising for most of it. Using this method, the film, in its totality, almost reaches 6 hours long (see the full version on youtube below).
P. Watkins pushed the democratic process of making a film to the point of hiring actors opposed to the Paris Commune to play the Parisians who flew the capital city or remained hidden during the three months of its existence. It does not forget either the important faults of the Commune, the execution of the clerical hostages, the cowardice of some members of the Central Committee (elected group of decision in all districts of Paris and from every professions), the strong lack of organizations in front of the Versailles Army, the crowd syndromes etc. This antagonism of facts reflects the antagonism in the numerous debates showed on the screen with actors who reach a very high level of passion as they have no problem identifying with their character who has a lot of similitude with their own person. In this regard, the pseudo-documentary crew go as far as asking those same actors if they would also risk their lives today if confronted to the same situation while they act the fight on the barricade (see the 31st chapter on the video).
The film was badly received when it was released on TV, even by its own producer, Arte (probably the only channel that is worth watching in France) as P.Watkins himself explains on his website
. The reasons for that are probably numerous and the first one is of course the institutional form of censorship that never gave to the 1871 Commune the place in history that it deserves. However, another interesting reason for it can be seen in the very means of this film. We could think of an alternate film from a liberal filmmaker who would have the favors of the industry to gather an important budget in order to create a glorious aesthetic film that would narrate an individual (love) story within the history of the Commune (a grotesque example of this form an aesthetics can be seen in the videoclip No Church in the Wild as I wrote about
earlier) . The liberal media would applause this work and through it, self-congratulate for their open-mind.
Following the narrative I created around the question of the New York Commune as an interesting scenario to investigate what would be a contemporary equivalent of the 1871 Paris Commune, I am now starting to prepare a medium length film on this very same story. I will therefore regularly publish articles about useful references on that matter.
The two first ones that has been already published here could be found through the metaphorical map I drew during the last siege on Gaza as well as the short reportage done in post-Sandy powerless Brooklyn. Of course, I am definitely interested in any additional reference my readers would find useful in this exploration.
When I first watched Alex Rivera’s Sleep Dealer about four years ago, I wrote an article about it that would have deserved a deeper analysis. That is why I decided to re-watch it today and write a bit more about it.
This film introduces a near future in which a young Mexican farmer facing the militarized privatization of water resources on a daily basis and who see his house destroyed by a drone piloted from the United States. He then moves to Tijuana where he earns in life by working in a sleep dealer, a factory in which the mind and energy of Mexican labor workers are being used through body-plug connections linked to various working machines in the US.
The views of the factory are the most striking images of the film as they fully reconstruct the imagery of the assembly line factory as we currently know it while having the object of production disappeared from this same imagery. The workers’ bodies still endure the physical labor and its repetition, yet the product of their work is situated on the other side of the border. The connection cables are the only link from the laborer to this product and the violence with which they penetrate his body expresses the power of the exploitation. It is probably not innocent that those cables make the workers appear as puppets in a literal illustration of the dispossession of their body.
District B13 Ultimatum, directed by Patrick Alessandrin (2009)
After a photographic and an historical interpretation of what I called for this series’ purposes, Fortress Paris, this third part introduces its cinematographic (literal) adaptation of this topic. The film Banlieue 13 (District B-13) and its sequel Banlieue 13 Ultimatum materializes to the extreme, the policies of exclusion of the Parisian proletarian suburbs. In these movies, the suburbs are surrounded by a high wall which leave the inside population to its own fate in a similar way than the film Escape from New York created by John Carpenter in 1981 in which Manhattan was walled, thus imprisoning its criminal inhabitants.
In this interpretation the suburbs incarnate a perfect example of Michel Foucault’s notion of heterotopia (see previous article and the cinematographic series). It is the other space, delimited with access filters and which applies its specific rules different from the milieu that surrounds it. Similarly to many institutional heterotopias, the suburban one does not leave any choice to its inhabitants to leave it through the militarization of its border. Just like the psychiatric hospital or the prison (one might add the school and the factory to a certain extent), it thus constitutes an authoritarian heterotopia and acts as a mechanism of control for society.
In a less ‘spectacular’ aesthetics but with a more solid and touching scenario/directing/acting, I cannot not recommend Mathieu Kassovitz’s first film La Haine (1995) in which the walls are not as visible but evidently exist.
all images are screenshots from Romain Gravas’ fim: Jay Z & Kanye West “No church in the wild” (2012)
The new videoclip of Jay Z and Kanye West, No Church in the Wild, directed by Romain Gavras is problematic to many extents. During 5 very aesthetic minutes of film, a slowmotion of a scene involving a violent fight between an angry mob (composed strictly of men) and a less angry -yet much more methodical in its violence- group of suppressive geared policemen. The scene is recognizably occurring in Prague and Paris, thus offering us a modern version of the various European revolutions and insurrections of the 19th century. The ‘aesthetization’ of violence is optimal in order to directly to address our testosterone which then helps us to identify to this hyper-male insurrectional standard which correspond in nothing to the various 2011 Arab revolutions or civic movements in various countries in the world. The society of spectacle is not interested in long pacific democratic construction and, through its various media (including the most serious and so called ‘liberal’ of them like the perfidious New York Times), prefers to capitalize on the violent side of the revolt imaginary in order to both discredit and co-opt a movement that was originally anti-capitalist. In this regard, it is not innocent that the rioters, in this video, do not seem to seek anything else than a simple fight with the police force (almost like a sport). It is Capitalism’s great strength to be able to include within itself its own antagonism, and furthermore to be able to capitalize on the latter. Jay Z and Kanye West are the perfect example of such phenomena as they represent the nec plus ultra of the anti-pro system components of a hip-hop music that was originally invented as a pure form of resistance against this very same system.
However, this short film is still interesting to look at, as it might touch a line of risk that capitalism is taking against itself. Capitalist’s cinema has been aesthetizing violence for quite a long time now; nevertheless when doing so, it is always careful to subject this violence against a tangible and specific form of otherness, whether the latter is embodied by aliens, enemy armies, gangsters, cops (but always corrupted and individualized in one way or another) or any other instance characterized by its binary mode of existence -it is either alive or dead, victorious or defeated. What a film like No Church in the Wild participates to, is the construction of an imaginary in which an intangible yet ubiquitous system is being fought against. Of course, the society of spectacle is still strongly present and the policemen are contributing to the anthropomorphism of an antagonism; nevertheless, it is clear that something outside of this visible fight is engaged and is therefore developed in our imaginary.
También la Lluvia (Even the Rain) (2010) by Icíar Bollaín
I think that for many of us the choice of being a leftist versus a rightist does not cause many existential problems. It is inconceivable for us that a person can rationally be racist, xenophobic, chauvinist, homophobic, colonialist or more generally (many rightists are not any of those) that one’s way of life could be actively detrimental to another, and somehow, we think much of ourselves for such attitude. The problem comes when our comfort is challenged by our ethics. The film También la Lluvia (Even the Rain) by Icíar Bollaín invites us to question this challenge. The plot introduces Sebastian, a film director who comes to a pre-Morales Bolivia (2000) in order to shoot a movie illustrating the horror of the Spanish colonialism after Christopher Columbus arrived in the ‘new world’ in the late 15th century. The beginning of the film (the real one) shows Sebastian’s generosity and passion to (re)write history through a strong anti-colonialist verve. Soon enough however, the Cochachamba water conflict occurs and oppose the governmental privatization of water distribution against the anger of the people. For several reasons developed in the movie, Sebastian is confronted to a series of choices between his film and his ethics which should push him to stop his project and join the protesters one way or another. Each time, nevertheless, he favors his film more than anything else and without actively helping the violent suppression, he makes compromises betraying the spirit in which he was making his film in the first place.
Sebastian is a film director but the problem remains the exact same for an architect. Designing shelters for the third world in Western architecture school is good and certainly takes essence in honorable feeling we have, us, their creators; but doesn’t it satisfy us a little bit too quickly without contributing to a practical help to the people it was supposed to be addressed to in the first place? And, before even starting such projects, which are never far from being patronizing, don’t we have everything to learn from the people it claims to be serving? No need to go too far from the place we live to be confronted with the same issues, only manifested in more subtle ways. Because we are passionate by architecture and that we are convinced that our design can make a stand, we think of it as an end in itself ignoring the means and compromises that it would have taken to be achieved. Of course, nothing happen without compromises but to who or what are they detrimental?
Hugo by Martin Scorsese (2011)
Today’s guest writer essay, written by Ryan Pierson explores the visual relationships between Georges Méliès‘ pioneer cinema in the beginning of the 20th century with its re-reading more than a century later by Martin Scorcese in his Hugo thanks to the new 3D technology. Cinema is indeed a not so young art anymore and encountered along the years, various technological inventions which expanded its means of production. Few months ago, I attended to a small Q&A with Wim Wenders after the visioning of his film Pina, during which he explained that he had to wait to discover the 3D technology to eventually dare to transcript Pina Bausch’s art in a film after thirty years of hesitation. Ryan compares this new tool, thanks to which the two-dimensional representation of space seems to unfold itself out of the screen, to the ‘train effect’ that scared so much the first spectators of Cinema history. Stereoscopic films share indeed something similar to the origins of cinema as they construct their pictoriality through the spatialization of two dimensional planes from foreground to background the same way than Méliès was physically building some of his settings which did not have much thickness either.
Méliès in Stereopsis
by Ryan Pierson
Still from the film Fahrenheit 451 by Francois Truffaut
I resume my short literary series of references texts whose object within the narrative (and therefore within the book) is precisely the book as an object. I will eventually articulate them together in a forthcoming article. After Jorge Luis Borges’ Book of Sand (see previous post), today is the turn of Fahrenheit 451 written by Ray Bradbury in 1953 and then adapted for cinema by Francois Truffaut in 1966. I already dedicated an article about the latter within the context of the series of the heterotopias in cinema. It addressed the end of the narrative when Montag discovers the forest of the human books, each man and woman embodying one book of their choice.
The following text is oppositely the beginning of the story in which Montag is a fireman, i.e. a man who burns books. The latter have been indeed forbidden for their ability to describe another world, and therefore, their invitation to embrace subversive (dis)orders. When Bradbury writes his book in 1953, the Nazi ‘autodafés ‘ (book burning ceremonials) still belong to a close history. In our own very recent history (this last year), the Koran has been burnt twice in a disturbing media coverage (no media, no drama). In Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche’s new historical film, Les Chants de Mandrin (Smugglers’ Songs) set in 18th century France, the police forces burn the contraband manifesto that smugglers attempt to spread around and that was printed clandestinely – as an anecdote, philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy plays the role of the pirate printer !
Books are very poetic objects. By being embodied by paper, they carry their own fragility and constitute their own combustible when a power decides to annihilate them. Books are the medium through which ideas acquires a virtual eternity and for this reason deserve to be passionately salvaged. But this eternity is indeed only virtual as a small sparkle can inflame them and destroy them forever.
Fahrenheit 451 (excerpts)
By Ray Bradbury
Der Golem, wie er in die Welt kam by Carl Boese & Paul Wegener (1920)
A short article today, in order to link four narratives (coming from science fiction or not) which shares a common link in which they express the power of the word or/and the sound.
The first one is the myth of the Golem (which much later inspired Mary Shelley to write her Frankenstein), this creature who, from a model of clay became alive when his creator, Rabbi Loew inscribed the word Emet (reality in Hebrew) on his face. When later, the Golem went berserk, Loew simply erased the first letter of the word and thus killed him (Met means death). This episode is illustrative of the Kaballah, this branch of Judaism that dedicates all its efforts to the research of God through the esoteric holy scriptures and their mathematics.
Teaser poster for Michel Gondry’s upcoming adaptation of Ubik (Heath Killen)
In an obsessive sense of categorization, one might divide science fiction in few types. The machinist fascination would be tutored by Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, the epic interstellar narratives as well as the speculative robotic would be lead by Isaac Asimov, the descriptions of what could not be possibly described (!) would follow the work of Stanislaw Lem…etc. finally the co-existence of overlapping worlds and the entropy that those worlds are subjecting to would recognize the paternity of Philip K. Dick.
P.K. Dick’s novels and short stories have indeed this common link; they dramatizes the absolute uncertainty of the main characters for their identity as well as the tangibility of the world that surrounds them.
L’Origine by Marc-Antoine Mathieu (Delcourt, 1991)
This article is the first one of a short series I will do about the worlds dramatized by science fiction which gives me the opportunity to create a new category ‘science fiction‘ on the blog which already counts 42 articles.
To describe those worlds, we can use the notion of dystopia, thus following Liam Young’s example, but what is important to consider with these future situations that appear to us as horrible is that they only consist in the exacerbation of the present ones. In other words, the present as we experience it could probably be described in a narrative read in a ‘better world’ (following Philip K. Dick’s belief for the existence of other worlds) and appear as particularly horrible.
The first chapter of this series will explore four worlds dramatizing over-populated cities which offers a new look at the way we inhabit our urban environment. Those four worlds are depicted in the two short stories, The Concentration City and Billennium by James Graham Ballard, in the graphic novel L’Origine by Marc-Antoine Mathieu and in the film Soylent Green directed by Richard Felischer.
“audiocassette“ cover for i-phone 4
I am always happy to have non-architects participating to this guest writers series (see the essays by Lucy Finchett-Maddock, Maryam Monalisa Gharavi and Raja Shehadeh) and that is the case again this week thanks to Linnéa Hussein and her essay Old Media’s Ressurection. She recently finished her Master in Film Studies at Columbia University and will soon start a PhD in the same discipline. She was also a teacher assistant at the Jacob Burns Film Center in Westchester (New York).
Her essay investigates the medium that the tape (audio and VHS) constitutes and its return in contemporary cinema. However, instead of only questioning the medium in its form, she explores two films, Omar Gatlato and La Bocca del Lupo in which the tape is both the main object of the narrative and the provider of the plot.
Old Media’s Ressurection
by Linnéa Hussein
In October 2011 The New York Times published an article on the revival of the VHS tape in the horror film genre. What makes these so-called neo-VHS tapes different from their outdated VHS companions is the fact that their role transformed from being technical to being esthetic. Whole magazines such as for example Lunchmeat or Fangoria are devoted to the subject of the VHS now. For these horror fans, the neo-VHS is not preferred for functional reasons, but because the grainy picture quality – i.e. the signs of usage that made the DVD and BluRay replace the VHS in the first place – became an indispensible trope of the bad horror film genre.
Factory Fifteen (see previous post) just released their new film that they shot during Liam Young and Kate Davies’ Unknown Fields 2011 in Chernobyl (Ukraine) and Baikonur (Kazakhstan). Gamma is a sort of short pseudo documentary depicting a future in which numerous zones of the earth needs to be deradiated after a decade of nuclear war. As always in a capitalist world, this kind of public health operations are achived by private actors, here a company called Gamma which developed a type of roots that would absorb radioactivity. The film introduces the testimony of a survivor who describes how, very quickly, this root became autonomous and out of control, invading little by little his city.
The witness’ testimony talks about war machines to describe the vessels sent by Gamma, thus assimilating their action on the city as a sort of military invasion. In 1985, Ronald Reagan was claiming that the nine most terrifying words of the English language were ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help‘, we might want to paraphrase his claim against him saying that the most terrifying words are ‘I’m from a company and I’m here to help‘. The Fukushima experience clearly showed how private interests mixed with political corruption were leading to this kind of catastrophes.
GAMMA from Factory Fifteen on Vimeo.
You can watch the making-of video by following this link.
I recently posted a note about the Béla Tarr retrospective that the Lincoln Center organized in New York. This occasion gave me the opportunity to add to Damnation and the Harmonies Werckmeister, a third movie from him that fascinated me both for its content and its technicality: The Turin Horse.
The Turin Horse refers to the horse that Nietzsche one day saw being beaten to death by its master and that he hugged before sinking in prostration for few days. This event is said to have been the trigger to Nietzsche’s madness from which he will never recover. This film is suggesting the life of this horse ‘s life as well as his master and his master’s daughter’s life before this event. The setting never changes: a small stone house in the middle of a Beckettian landscape in which the father and the daughter repeat the same routine every day that Béla Tarr shows in his beautiful long sequence shots that has been creating his style since Damnation.
The films starts with the beginning of a storm that will never stops to increase. Leaves, trees, clothes, fabrics are all subject to this heavy wind; even the light itself changes drastically from quasi-monochromatic whites to the darkness of the end of the movie. Everything seems submitted to a sort of entropy in which all means of subsistence got affected. The Horse refuses to move, then to eat and drink, the water of the well disappear, the words of the book the daughter reads resounds as pure meaningless sound and eventually the light itself dies. Nietzsche is never evoked (although the prophet who visits them at some point does recall Zarathustra to some extent), but one might want to see this entropy of matter as a parallel of the entropy of the mind he experiences. I would even be keen to propose an interpretation in which this whole film consists in the vision that Nietzsche had when he saw this horse being beaten to death. The long sequences of Béla Tarr would therefore contrast with the sudden and punctual event Nietzsche experiences in a paradoxical parallelism of time scale that I remain fascinating by. (see my similar interpretations of The Trial and Enter the Void)