Friday, May 11, 2007

A Fine and Private Place

A hurried postscript to L.A. Store Windows (May 3): only in retrospect am I noticing the self-reflexive description of this space in the last line about the liveliness of the inner space of the overlooked window. There are figures of the party in the crypt (done nicely in Corpse Bride, most recently). Melanie Klein's psychic space of internal good and bad objects is very crowded, and suggests the black comedy of transferring more and more interest to the inside. For Lacanian psychoanalysts the liveliness of undead space is what's really dead and disturbing about it, and of course manic, unwilled liveliness is no fun. Klein also offers a way of imagining the civilized population of internal space, however, although she doesn't explore this as much or provide many adjectives for it: for her such a space would be stable, symmetrical dynamically, something to return to. (The image is of Persephone and Hades dining in.) If a dinner party is possible, maybe a cocktail party--for a few--would be possible too.


etc said...

i've been thinking the question of writing that is posed in your blog and how it is reflected in each of the writings. i would say, it is tough. i think that too about the less-tended store windows in LA. There is one on Temple, i think, that is more like a house but has a row of satin-like slippers in the window with a sign that says 6.99. The shop, from what i can tell, is more like a seamstress; sometimes the door is open and inside there are machines and sometimes people. it's a small space; they are sewing in. tough, as in, it's hard to say. as a friend used to say, delighfully, about things that were not really that hard to say about at all. but i love this type of indecision (the "yes and no" that surely can't mean both at the same time) that it seems the crypt also holds. "the satin shoes, they're for sale?" --"well, yes and no."

RT said...

It's a gray area, for sure. The ideal thing would be if it doesn't matter whether people come in or not (meaning, it's good and uncoerced if they do--cf. Anne-Lise).

For some reason, while reading your description of the seamstress's place I remembered an example which might be the opposite. I think of Boston as an intensely territorial city (anyway, it used to be). I once got off the train at the wrong place on the way to my mother's and took the opportunity to walk into a pharmacy for eyedrops. On the outside it was simply a pharmacy, but as soon as I walked in I got the sense that the five people inside (pharmacist, clerk, customers) knew and perhaps hated each other as family, and were in the middle of various arguments that I shouldn't hear and could never understand. As the door closed behind me they all looked at me as though I were crazy to have walked in, as if I should've known. But it's always possible to feel that way in a "public" place, one that has the open sign unambiguously up. But open for whom? --and so on.

RT said...

p.s. some would say that it's the indecision that's creating the space at all...?