Saturday, August 04, 2007

Quote of the Day

"A dialectical view of history strengthens us in the conclusion that our relationship to the past can never be that of univocal moral judgments but always involves what amount to structurally determinate ambiguities, historical mixed feelings. I have tried to articulate elsewhere the ways in which the kinds of judgments we make on works of art--as progressive or reactionary, as ideological document or formal artifact--vary themselves in function of our practical distance from the past and from history: a really complete act of historical apprehension would indeed involve all of these apparently contradictory judgments in turn, if not simultaneously, for the works of the art of the past are always all these things at once, class apologia just as much as sheer formal invention, and the realities they express involve both positive and negative impulses together, both "progressive" and "reactionary" elements."

--Fredric Jameson, introduction to the English edition of Henri Arvon's Marxist Aesthetics

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