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Posts tagged "storytelling"

Interesting new direction for Glen Hansard, whose first solo album comes out at the end of june. Back in a 2005 interview with TMO, he told us:

For me singing a political song is like me trying to sell you a Volvo, only because it’s like selling an idea. If I write a song about a situation, some people can do that very convincingly, but I don’t think that I can. It’s something I admire. I admire Damien Dempsey for example. It’s not even that he writes political songs, he writes songs about social situations and his people. You have to be very strong to write and sing songs like that. If you can see someone like that as a troubadour or a herald, that’s not what I am. I’m more like a little cinema. I’m a little world cinema in the corner of the town square, inviting you in to look at something. Follow the story and forget about the politics for a little while

The lead song from his up coming  Rhythm and Repose  album sounds very much like that art-house cinema (in a good way) in the corner, inviting you in for a strange and intriguing story.

Italian novelist Domenico Starnone's First Execution is one of those novels where the author intrudes regularly, reminding the reader that she’s reading a novel. It’s a largely European tradition of storytelling, according to German film-maker Michael Haneke, which has its roots in the post-war period and an implicit distrust of fiction and the uses to which straight storytelling had been put by fascists

Those who escaped to America were able to continue the storytelling approach to film — really a 19th-century tradition — with a clear conscience, since it hadn’t been tainted by fascism. But in the German-speaking world, and in most of the rest of Europe, that type of straightforward storytelling, which the Nazis had made such good use of, came to be viewed with distrust. The danger hidden in storytelling became clear — how easy it was to manipulate the crowd. As a result, film, and especially literature, began to examine itself. Storytelling, with all the tricks and ruses it requires, became gradually suspect. This was not the case in Hollywood.” At this point, Haneke asked politely whether I was following him, and I told him that I was. “I’m glad,” he said, apparently with genuine relief. “For Americans, this can sometimes be hard to accept.”

from an interview with American novelist John Wray

It’s an interesting insight - even if questionable, particularly in the case of literature where there was plenty of structural intrusion prior to the Holocaust and WWII (take for example Flann O’Brien's classic 1939 novel At-Swim-Two-Birds); certainly in an Italian or German context it seems to carry weight - and Starnone's novel is a good example.

(full review here)