I’ve been thinking about Linh Dinhs “The Most Beautiful Word” from class today. Although it never made it to the board, partly because I wasn’t sure that Image is something to be listed as distinct from everything else we used to define good writing, I do think that image is a separate quality in writing that ought to be recognized as imperative to good writing. Even the driest material evokes some kind of image (even if it’s just burnt toast). As humans I feel that we respond most quickly and honestly to image. Dinhs piece intrigued me at first, but just as we were returning to large group I saw the image of a man combing a dead man’s body, specifically tongue, for teeth as similar to a jeweler, miner, kid, studying a hunk of rock for it’s mineral content or for precious jewels embedded in the stony mess. That comparison provoked a strong reaction in me that opened up a bunch of new avenues for interpretation. There are a lot of places this could go, but their maps will be drawn elsewhere. I just wanted to throw out an idea I didn’t express but haven’t been able to shake since class.
Posted on February 15, 2008 by Eleanor Johnstone