http://www.xs4all.nl/~brooklyn/artik...nielewski2.pdf. If so, what does it say?
http://www.xs4all.nl/~brooklyn/artik...nielewski2.pdf. If so, what does it say?
John B, what kind of response were you hoping for?
I am at work at the moment, but can give a small summary of the article later on, after I have escaped.
If you were hoping for a direct translation, I can have a go. However, this might take a while and, unless I can find a Dutch person who is willing to read the article and check my translation, I can't guarentee my accuracy.
Perhaps if I do my best with a translation, someone here might want to give it a read and correct me where necessary?
Do you know where the rest of the article is?
Though the ideal, of course, would be a full translation, I personally would be happy with a summary.
You ask where the rest of it is . . . good question. That's all that showed up when I clicked on the link. I also have a link to it on this thread. I'm curious to see whether the Dutch piece discusses the image in the article as though it actually pertains to something extant called The Navidson Record. I have a hunch about the article, but it's absurd of me even to entertain the hunch until/unless I know more about the text itself.
I have been trying to locate the rest of the article and have had no luck as yet.
Unfortunately, I can't see any direct reference to the image on the page we are looking at. The article does talk about the book being a visual (as well as textual) medium, however, so perhaps the image might be an illustration of this?
The text directly underneath the image is a translation of the text underneath the image on p 660 of the English edition.
Thanks for stealing away some time from work.
Once the sun came up here, I did some more looking. Here is the link to the full article. I'm looking forward to someone's telling the rest of us whether this is of any value.
Thank you, John B. Great find!
I found the article quite interesting, although I still haven't noticed any direct references to the images.
I'll see what I can do with it.
I'm wondering why the author chose the images from "Contrary Evidence" when there are other images from the novel s/he could have chosen. Maybe they are simply randomly selected; one of the article's goals is to imitate the layout of the book, after all. But those illustrations aren't actually integrated into the layout in that way.
It's probably no big deal; I'm just curious about the reasoning behind the choices.
I have made a rough translation of the article, but I'm not Dutch so I'm in the process of getting the content of my translation checked out by friends.
It might take a while ...
I won't post the translation here - it's far too long, and it's simply my interpretation. If you are interested in reading it, however, please contact me and I can send you a copy when it's finished.
I can give you a summary:
The article begins with a quick description of the book and explains that Jeroen van Bergelijk, the author of the article, spent a night on the town in Hollywood with MZD.
It describes MZD then goes on to give an account of the appearance of the book, concluding that HoL is not just a textual but also a visual medium.
The article mentions that the author and MZD visited The Hollywood Standard, the Sky Bar and The Viper Room, and quotes MZD talking about the Hollywood clubscene Johnny Truants world. This leads the article to describe the story about a dissertation about a documentary.
The definition in the American press of HoL as a literary Blair Witch Project is discussed how it is typical Hollywood to define one thing by comparing it to another thing, although MZD does see some similarities, for instance, both are scary and full of shadows.
The article turns to the layout of the book, and MZD explains that the typographical nature of language is important. He mentions that he is trying to investigate the theoretical concept of house and says that in the footnotes we will find explanations about architecture, the house of literature, the house as metaphor for the family, and so forth.
MZD explains that he tried to both increase and limit the experience of the reader through the typography of the book, and gives an example of the layout of chapter IX (where the text is maze-like and slows the reader down) compared to the layout of chapter X (which has few words per page and speeds the reader up).
The subject of film, and the influence of MZDs father is discussed. MZD talks about Spain and the confiscated film made by his father.
The article then turns to the footnotes, observing that the meaning of the footnotes is not always clear. MZD relates this to the story of Orson Wells when filming Citizen Kane he thought that the shadows werent substantial enough and stuffed them with dark curtains to give them a deeper feeling of darkness in the film.
MZD thinks what he stuffs his shadows with is relevant. People can be scared of what they might find in the shadows and can be frustrated that they dont understand some of the footnotes. MZD tells us not to feel dumb because its simply the nature of shadows...There are things about the book that we wont understand.
MZD explains the effect of the lists on how the reader experiences the book - an uncomfortable feeling that you havent read everything, that you havent understood everything
The article discusses the fact that MZD will not sell the film rights to HoL. MZD describes the experience of reading a book after having seen the film and explains how reading can promote empathy through having to imagine the thoughts and experiences of others.
The article ends with MZD stating that Reading and writing will change the world
Can't believe I forgot to include my disclaimer last night:
The summary of the article is simply a reflection of what I see.
The phrases in italics are taken from the text, but they are from my translation of the text, which is entirely subjective.
Thanks for that, Merouda.
One question: what on earth is the bit about the porno actress's first ever fist-fucking scene? Sorry, it just caught my eye.
The porno actress appears in the article in the context of some of the people that were introduced by MZD to Jeroen van Bergelijk (author of the article)
Theres also a drugged up Finnish bassist with a mohican and an actor who played a small role in a soap opera and is now working as a gardener.
Edit: Sorry - to be more clear - the reference to the fist fucking scene was that one of the people introduced to the author of the article was a porno actress who had just finished her first fist fucking scene. The article didn't go into further details.
Hey.. that very piece of art is what first attracted me to " of Leaves" .. I'm Dutch and to be honest I hadn't heard from Danielewski or his book before the Dutch version was released. The article is from Jeroen van Bergeijk (http://www.vanbergeijk.com/artikelen/houseofleaves.html) who wrote it for the VPRO Gids (a Dutch television guide), actually the only Dutch tv-guide which does put some work in the design of the magazine..
I read here that somebody already translated the article.. However, if anyone has any questions regarding the text just let me know.
Here is a little translation from a part of the interview, for those interested... it is from the moment the author meets Danielewski.
'The blue hair has another advantage: it makes the author easily recognisable in (the bar) 'The Hollywood Standard' - THE Hollywood hotel to be - where Danieleski and I meet to talk about his book. In the restaurant of The Hollywood Standard, Danielewski gets a waitress to give him her phone number and makes her promise to come to The Viper Room later that night. W
We continue the evening with some martini's in 'the sky bar', one of Danieleski's usual hangouts of the main character 'Johnny Truant' and finish the night with a gig of a local band in The Viper Room. Once inside Danielewski seems to be a well known guest. Here and there he shakes some hands and introduces me to his friends, who are somehow all inside his book as well.
'What fascinates me about Hollywoods clubscene are the broken lives', Danieleski will tell me the next day, during breakfast, with a hangover. 'I love the masquerade which takes place there. Hollywood still has the glamour. Many people are attracted to it. But the majority of them will never realise their dreams. This is the domain of misfits and freaks, people who do not fit in anywhere.´ And indeed, during the night Danielewski introduces me to an actor who had a part in an soap/opera but now makes his living as a gardener, a Finnish bass player with a
punk-hairlook (don´t know the translation for ´hanekam´) who used so much drugs he has problems staying awake, and a pornactrice who just did her first fistfuckscene, as Danielewski can tell me.
.. So far... It´s sorta a speedtranslation, just reading and blindtyping the English the same time so please don´t mind the fucked up grammar...
Nice translation valorian666.
hanekam = mohican
Thanks... yeah.. I guess Mohican will do.. :)Originally Posted by Merouda
So, Merouda, what's your story? Since your Dutch seems to be quite well developed may I assume you have been living in Holland for quite some time now? Born in the U.S.A.?
I wrote a little about myself in Dutch here:
nederlanders? of engelse mensjes in NL?.
As I mentioned above, I wrote a rough translation of the article. However, I wouldn't call my level of Dutch "well developed" (but thank you valorian666) and would hate to spread misinformation if I have not interpreted the text correctly.
I split up my translation and send it in pieces to different friends for accuracy checking, but I haven't received all of the pieces back yet.
valorian666, would you be interested in checking my translation for accuracy if I sent it to you?
Depends if you're British or American, actually. (The name not the hair.)Originally Posted by John B.
Edit: In fact, Collins (I haven't got the OED handy) offers the following for 'mohican':
1 a punk hairstyle in which the head is shaved at the sides and the remaining strip of hair is worn stiffly erect and sometimes brightly coloured
2 a person wearing such a hairstyle
1 (plural: -cans, -can)
a member of a North American Indian people formerly living along the Hudson river and east of it
2 the language of this people, belonging to the Algonquian family
But this for 'mohawk':
(Ice skating) a half turn from either edge of either skate to the corresponding edge of the other skate
[ETYMOLOGY: 19th Century: after Mohawk1]
1 (plural: -hawks, -hawk)
a member of a North American Indian people formerly living along the Mohawk River; one of the Iroquois peoples
2 the language of this people, belonging to the Iroquoian family
a river in E central New York State, flowing south and east to the Hudson River at Cohoes: the largest tributary of the Hudson. Length: 238 km (148 miles)
Jamais personne na perdu un chat
You know how there are things that Mama tells you (literally) that you just take to be so without questioning them?
My dictionary confirms what yours does, Mr. Syzygy. Thanks for providing me with my Daily New Thing Learned.
But you're not wrong. As fearful_syzygy pointed out, it's simply a matter of differing US / British usage.Originally Posted by John B.
Cut 'n pasted from the OED:
Mohawk n and a
4. orig. U.S. Also in form mohawk. A haircut in which the head is shaved except for a brush-like strip of hair running centrally from the middle of the forehead to the back of the neck, supposedly resembling that worn by Mohawk Indians. Cf. MOHICAN a. 2, and note there.
1950 Wisconsin Eng. Lang. Survey Suppl. in Dict. Amer. Regional Eng. (1996) III. 631/2 Different kinds of men's haircuts..Mohawk. 1982 A. LANE & M. CRAWFORD Vals (film script for Valley Girl) (rev. draft) 36 There's Harvey. He's got his Mohawk now. 1983 Miami News 7 July 1/4 Mr. Elijah Akeem, a menacing black mountain beneath an intimidating mohawk. 1986 New Yorker 2 June 25/2 Punks with stiff green Mohawks. 1996 City Paper (Baltimore) 27 Nov. 37/1 A much better way to revisit the mid-to late 70s than wearing some idiotic pair of flares or getting a mohawk 20 years too late.
And here's the note at 'Mohican':
The Mohican hairstyle imitates a traditional deer-hair topknot worn by males of certain north-eastern American Indian peoples; the specific attribution to the Mohican peoples probably derives from the writings of J. Fenimore Cooper, either through conventionalized illustrations in certain editions or through film adaptations of the novels.
The Mohican is now usually distinguished from the Mohawk (MOHAWK n. 4) by the fact that the strip of hair is grown long and stiffened to stand erect or in spikes (a style associated particularly with punks in the 1970s and 1980s); however, in earlier use the two terms appear to have been more or less synonymous (Mohican being more usual in Britain, Mohawk more usual in the United States).
I love the OED.
Me too. But as I said, I didn't have one handy ... and I'm not an online subscriber :cry:Originally Posted by pwhite
And, judging by what the OED has to say on the matter, I'm the one who's wrong.Originally Posted by I
Jamais personne na perdu un chat
uhhh...i checked the link, and saw all the dutch...so i thought, i've been using an online spanish to english translator for all my spanish homework ( ) and tried to take the text and put it into the translator for english. Well not all the words got translated, but i thought i'd toss in what i got out of it, and then one of the other folks out there could decipher/translate the rest...Oh yeah, the way it translated makes it so that some of the words seems out of place, cause it translates word by word, not sentences, but maybe someone could figure it out from here...sorry.
Leaves appeared, becomes that in blue printed. It is but one of the many typogra- Þsche singularities of the book. or Leaves stands full
footnotes that sometimes horizontal, then again vertical on the paginaÕs placed be. Sometimes the footnotes in separate windows on the page, again
they walk appeared from below then to above or has been printed the text in mirror image. In a number of chapters but single words resists stand on
a page, then paginaÕs barstensvol with text. Danielewski uses in its book a half dozen different letter types. Some senses have been crossed out,
stand others diagonal, upside down or vertical on the page. Yet but to not to speak of the be springy [i] g paginaÕs counting INDEX1 and the three
appendixes with signs, letters, collages and fotoÕs. In short, it book not only as a tekstueel only also as visual medium. The blue hair has yet an
additional advantage: it makes the author easily recognizably in the caf. by The Hollywood Standard Ð the hipste hotel of Hollywood Ð true
Danielewski and I arranged over be book, to talk. In the restaurant of The Hollywood Standard true Danielewski the phone number of our waitress know
lynx to pick and her want to promise later on the evening to The Viper Cream to come. 2 We continue the evening with a few martini Õs in the trendy
Sky Bar, one of the fixed hangouts of central figure Johnny Truant and we decide the night with an action of a local tie in The Viper. Once within
Danielewski a fixed guest appeared. Left and right shakes he hands and puts he me for at its friends Ð that otherwise all in its novel its gestrand.
ÔWat me fascinates are broken will at the clubscene of Hollywood the lives, Õ he me the next day Ð under the ONTBIJT3 and hung over Ð tell. ÔIk am
mad on the maskerade that there takes place. Hollywood has really still the promise of glamour. Many men feel attracted self through that through.
But for the large majority counts natural that they their dreams can never realize. This is the domain of the misÞts and the freaks, the men that
nowhere bijhoren. Õ And indeed, during the evening let Danielewski me knowledge make with an actor that a roll has had in a soap-opera only now in
its maintenance foresees as gardener, a Finse bassist with a hanekam, that through the drugs scarcely more out its eyes can look, and a porno-actress
that it Ð so Just her first Þstfucking- scne on has sit. This is Johnny TRUANTS4 world. If he not through drugs has been clouded tries Johnny a
manuscript to reconstruct of which he the remnants in the apartment of a certain Zampan. have found. This manuscript is a kind of dissertation over
the documentary The Navidson Record, a Þlm that otherwise insofar as Johnny can work out do not exists. A story over a dissertation over a
documentary, in short. The Navidson Record tells of a house that at the inside a few centimeter larger is then at the outside. The house is
inhabited Want Navidson, its woman and two children by photographer. Navidson hits you. ntrigeerd through the paradoxical house and subjects the
house at an accurate investigation. He discovers a course that leads to a labyrinth. Navidson rest a forwarding from and begins be the talloze
rooms, courses and vaults of house to explore. How that ends will I do not give away, but the fact that or Leaves in the American press
everywhere as a Ôliteraire Blair Witch ProjectÕ were described gives an indication that the story properly gruesomely is. What finds Danielewski of
that definition? ÔAch yes, it is typical Hollywood which they of it hold compete to deÞni. run through they with others compete to compare. ItÕs
Honey I Shrunk the Kids marks The Blair Witch Project! But the comparison with The Blair Witch Project will be go in certain sense well on: both
they frightening, both they over found Þlmmateriaal and both be they deep black, gruesome and shady. Õ De most in the eye jumping quality of
or Leaves is the lay-out of the text. The question that self after single pages already presses is natural: about which that bizarre typograÞe?
ÔHet traditional, let we say academic, idea is that it do not constitutes how text there looks forward. Language is language. It makes not from how
it is pronounced, it makes not from in which form it is, which colors the letters have. That find I simplistic. The image, the typograÞsch take
after of language is important and that try I in this book to examine. Round the reader there not is them to me to to become estranged tell them to
me a traditional, stretching them to me, but I try them to me also the theoretical draft house to to examine. Consequently in the footnotes find
your expositions over architecture, over the house of the literature, over house as metaphor for the family et cetera. That combination of story and
theory is otherwise as old as the way to Rome. The best example is possibly the bible that as well a story as a ÞlosoÞe is. Where I me against
resistance am that the ÞlosoÞe
I know I said I wouldnt post my translation to the whole article. Ive changed my mind.
Its still possible that I may have mistranslated on occasion. If someone more fluent in Dutch than I am happens to wander past, I would welcome any corrections.
Cult Novel of Leaves
In America, of Leaves, the debut of the American writer, Mark Z. Danielewski, has already reached cult status. Recently, the Dutch translation, Het Kaartenhuis has also appeared. A scary book, which is set in the night life of Hollywood. The unorthodox layout is remarkable, such as the blue highlighted word house, Danielewskis leitmotif. Jeroen van Bergelijk spent an evening in Hollywood with the writer.
The paragraph with the strikethrough text on the first page reiterates the above.
I am waiting at the entrance of The Viper Room, the Hollywood nightclub owned by Johnny Depp. On Sunset Boulevard, the sports cars and cabriolets rage past. Beautiful people walk past the doorway. I suddenly realize: This pavement is the very spot where River Phoenix died of an overdose seven years ago. It is pertinent that I stand here in the queue with Mark Z. Danielewski, author of the cult book of Leaves. One of the main characters in his book is, in fact, the tattoo artist Johnny Truant, whose life consists of the Hollywood night life and fanatical use of recreational drugs. Preferably both at the same time. To get an impression of the environment in which of Leaves is set, the author took me for a night on the town.
Danielewski (34) has a striking appearance. His short hair is dyed very blue, his beard is platinum blond. He is dressed in a velour shirt and tight white trousers. That blue hair is not just a meaningless fashion statement. The colour blue is in fact a leitmotif in Danielewskis debut novel (on which he worked for approximately ten years). Every time the word house appears in the 700 odd pages of of Leaves, it is printed in blue. This is just one of the many typographical singularities of the book. of Leaves is full of footnotes, some of which are printed horizontally across the page, others vertically. Some footnotes appear in separate windows on the page, others read from bottom to top, or are printed in mirror image. A few chapters contain just one or two words per page, while other pages are bursting full of text. In his book, Danielewski uses half a dozen different lettertypes. Some sentences are struck through, others are diagonal, upside down or vertical on the page. Not to speak of the foury pages containing the index and three appendices with drawings, letters, collages and photos. In short, the book is not only a textual, but also a visual medium.
The blue hair has an additional advantage: it makes the author easily recognizable in the café of The Hollywood Standard the hippest hotel in Hollywood where Danielewski and I have arranged to meet to talk about his book. In the restaurant of the Hollywood Standard, where Danielewski gets hold of the telephone number of our waitress and makes her promise to come to the Viper Room later in the evening. We continue the evening with a few martinis in the trendy Sky Bar, one of the local hangouts of protagonist Johnny Truant, and we conclude the evening with a performance by a local band in The Viper Room. Once inside, Danielewski appears to be one of the locals. He shakes hands left and right and introduces me to his friends, all of whom ended up in the book.
What fascinates me about the clubscene of Hollywood is the broken lives he was to tell me the following day over breakfast, and hungover. I love the masquerade that takes place there. Hollywood still has the promise of glamour. Many people are attracted to that. But of course the vast majority cannot realize their dreams. This is the domain of the misfits and the freaks, the people that dont belong anywhere. Indeed, throughout the evening, Danielewski introduced me to an actor who had played small part in a soap opera but is now is currently working as a gardener, a Finnish bassist with a mohican, who is almost blinded by drugs, and a porno actress who has just finished her first fist-fucking scene.
This is Johnny Truants world. When he is not clouded by drugs, Johnny tries to reconstruct a manuscript, the remnants of which he found in the apartment of a certain Zampano. This manuscript is a kind of dissertation about the documentary The Navidson Record, a film that otherwise, as far as Johnny can see, does not exist. A story about a dissertation about a documentary, in short. The Navidson record tells of a house which is a few centimeters bigger on the outside than the inside. The house is inhabited by photographer Will Navidson, his wife, and two children. Navidson becomes intrigued by the house and subjects it to an accurate investigation. He discovers a hallway which leads to a labyrinth. He equips an expedition and starts to explore the rooms, hallways and shapes. I shall not give away how it ends, but the fact that the American press defines of Leaves as a literary Blair Witch Project gives an indication that the story is pretty scary. What does Danielewski think of the definition? Oh yes, it is typical Hollywood to define things by comparing them with other things. Its Honey I shrunk the Kids meets the Blair Witch Project! But the comparison with The Blair Witch Project it is applicable in a certain way: They are both terrifying, both are concerned with film material which has been found, and both are very black, scary and full of shadows.
The most eye catching quality of of Leaves is the layout of the text. The question that arises after a few pages is of course: why the bizarre typography?
The traditional, shall we say, academic, idea is that it doesnt matter how the text looks. Language is language. It doesnt matter how the words are pronounced, it doesnt matter in which form it is, or what colour the letters are. I find this simplistic. The image, the typographical nature of language is important, and I try to investigate that in this book. So as not to estrange the reader, there is a traditional, exciting story, but I am also trying to investigate the theoretical concept of house. Therefore, in the footnotes you find explanations about architecture, the house of literature, the house as metaphor for the family, and so forth. The combination of story and theory is otherwise as old as the road to Rome. The best example is perhaps The Bible, which is just as much a story as a philosophy. What I fight against is that the philosophy on a certain moment has said Piss off with the story element, we are only talking about theory So you could say that in a sense, I am very traditional.
That possibly sounds floaty, but through his strange typography Danielewski intends to create a thoroughly concrete effect. I have tried increase the experience of the reader and then limit it again. For instance, take the chapter where the labyrinth under Navidsons house is explored. The text here also looks literally like a maze, with vertical footnotes which read from back to front. That is meant to slow the reader down. In the following chapter, where the story reaches a climax, you suddenly have just a few sentences per page. That speeds up the reader: in twenty minutes you have suddenly read a hundred pages. That gives a feeling of excitement.
Danielewskis ideas are borrowed from the language of classical film. According to Danielewski, his typography has the same effect on the reader as the combination of close ups and totals and of static long shots and fast short shots have on the film viewer. It is not surprising that Danielewski is so influenced by film. He studied at the Los Angeles film school and his father a Polish immigrant was an experimental film maker. The influence of his father is clearly tangible throughout the whole book. Will Navidson is loosely based on his father, the experimental character of his work translates itself to the experimental character of the book, but above all the story of the non existent documentary is taken directly from his own life.
We moved to Spain during the Franco regime because my father wanted to make a documentary there. He had filmed Salvado Dali while he was filming, he had brilliant material of bull fighters. The initial intention was to make a politically neutral film, but while we lived there he became indignant about what he saw around him and began to meddle with politics. Now, I dont know this for certain because I have never seen the film. The film was confiscated by Franco before my father could finish.[
] My father had invested a lot of money in the film and from one day to the next he lost everything. This story has left its mark in the family: I grew up with a film that I had never seen.
Aside from the typography of the book is another remarkable aspect of this novel (reword): the 450 footnotes. While it is often very clear why Danielewski puts a footnote in the text, the meaning in some places is pretty untransparent. So, for instance, we come across endless lists in which hundreds of building materials, houses or architects are enumerated. Are the lists a gimmick, or must we really seek more behind them?
I shall give you an example. During the filming of Citizen Kane, Orsen Wells was not satisfied with the way the shadows looked in the film. He thought that the shadows needed to have more substance and depth. His solution was to crumple a deep red velvet theatre curtain into the shadowy corners. That provided a deeper feeling of darkness. Note that you dont see the curtains consciously. Like Wells, I also stuff my shadows full.I think that its also relevant what I stuff my shadows with, but most people are possibly scared off by what is to be found in the shadows. [
]Many people think: I am not going to read all of these endless footnotes. Or they are impressed and think I dont understand this. That is frustrating. Why? Because you become scared. You are scared that you dont get it. You think that you are dumb. Well, you arent. It is simply the nature of shadows. There are things that you wont understand about this book. Just like there are shadows through which you cannot look. The lists create a feeling that influences your view on the book: An uncomfortable feeling that comes over you that you havent read everything, that you havent understood everything.
Seeing the role that films have played in his life and work, it is remarkable that Danielewski wishes to avoid the filming of his debut novel at all costs. Despite various offers, he definitely refuses to sell the film rights. Cinema overwhelms the imagination. I recently asked the daughter of a friend if she would like to read the Borrowers No she answered, Ive already seen the film Many people are like that. But that way, you deprive yourself an important mental activity: that you must imagine what happens. If you read a book of which you have seen the film, its impossible to not constantly think of the images in the film. I guarantee that if you watch Perfect storm and then read the book, you will think of George Clooney an awful lot. I think that we must constantly stoke the fire of our imagination. This is an important moral and cultural activity. Only when we can imagine how someone else is, what kind of misfortune and disaster someone may have known in their life, can we begin to feel with someone. To put it another way, without reading, without imagination, there can be no empathy. And without empathy, we have no hope at all of some kind of social harmony. It is infinitely easier to go to war with the stranger. It is much more difficult when we realise that the enemy is equal to us. Do you see: Reading and writing will change the world.