Possibly incoherent morning post on “words”

I keep pondering how images (via advertising and movies and tv) tend to drown out words (via books, newspapers, poems).

As I listen to Proust and think about his descriptions of his experience of awaking after sleep, I suspect that no series of images can provide the intricate and resonant meanings he wrings from his prose. There is something about language that leaves room for thought. And there is something about images that can reach into our brains and grab our attention and limit our response.

Maybe this is just my own anachronistic impulse not to give up words for images.

I still like images of course. I’m just wondering what the zillions of visual messages I receive daily do to my meager ability to think a more complicated idea through.  As well as what they do to my ability to appreciate the visual arts and the visual nature of my life in general.

I think this bombardment makes me more suspicious of  strictly visceral visual attempts to communicate. (Did you know they have developed illuminated signs for the sides of busses now?)

I like the visual which can pull my attention deeper (that would be a good movie or work of art). But visual messages that are designed for me to “consume” (like ads or bad movies or tv shows) either numb me or cause me to react stubbornly and attempt to resist their impact.

I manage this resistance by talking to myself about what is happening.

You know. Talking with words.

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