Saturday, December 09, 2006

A little about my Blog

Mainly kept to record my weekly readings for Clio Wired, I hope to expand it into a catch basin for my ranting ideas about history and myth. Because I truely think the two are very related. Because people understand narratives best, and history and myth are just two styles of narratives. It's just that we normally reserve history for those events for which we have evidence, while myth captures those qualities which cannot be measured, like aspirations and beliefs. They are two sides of the same coin, and who can tell where the back of the coin stops and the front begins?
The picture of me is from the Saint Lawrence Cathedral in Nuremburg, Germany. Before I traveled to Europe the first time in 1992, I had alot of ideas about medieval architecture, the most prominent was that these massive stone structures were made by faceless hordes of peasants. Yes, many people worked on the cathedrals. But just like the Egyptians who built the pyramids, they were NOT faceless wretches struggling under the lash. We have records that list their names. And they themselves left their own signatures. Like this guy next to me, Adam Kraft. Kraft was a master stone cutter who worked on several projects for the Parler family of architects, including the St. Lawrence Cathedral. One of his greatest works was this stone tabernacle I am kneeling next to. This massive structure is seventy-five feet tall. And even at that height does not get very close to the cieling. You just have to take one look at the pride on Kraft's face to understand how the workers felt about their masterpiece. I would like to bring that kind of understanding to my students, that feeling of understanding two aware people--even though they may be separated by hundreds of years or different languages can have share a human experience. Even though we may walk into a building with preconcieved notions, it is quite possible to walk out with new attitudes. Takes a little bit of looking, a little bit of research, and a very open mind.

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