Iain Cameron's Diary
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2005-09-07 - 7:26 a.m.
Capt P came into the office earlier in the week - we arranged to meet at the Command Centre next week. I showed him the first Short Story which he seemed to like. On Monday the boss suggested a trip to Brussels later this month and I have mailed Gilbert to tell him of my likely movements and the possibility that I will bring a CD of material for Stories 2.
This morning I drove up the M1 to Nottingham to Djangoly City Academy for a strategy meeting with Steve, Keith, Betty and Francis. It seems this is one of the first colleges of its kind - it looks pretty impressive. Betty had written two useful papers for the meeting which everyone enjoyed. I left about midday and went back down the M1 then across on the A50 to the Toyota factor and then via the usual route to Bham. I was feeling quite tired by this time and so I stopped for a pub lunch - German whiter beer and duck wrap - reading the Stevenson Plath biography - esp the bit where she has been in the US with Hughes for a while and they go on a trip to the West Coast. At this time she is going to creative writing classes with Lowell and Anne Sexton - and also working hard on her own internal landscape.
Itís at this point that she writes the Birthday Poem set - which is discussed in some detail in Prof Roseís body of writing chapter in her haunting book. I need to go back over this - in fact I also thought I ought to get hold of some of the prose writing pieces. The Stevenson bio is a pretty good read.
I mailed Paul W about some of this and its connection to Queer Theory esp the idea of the lesbian phallus in J Butler -one of my favourite pieces just now. I think its possible that Butler institutes a post-human aesthetic at this point. This is an idea which may be linked to Hegelís conception of the end of art - but I am waiting for a book of essays to arrive from the US before he can really develop this.
My aspiration is to show that Huxley through the Savage anticipates post-human aesthetics - and that these intermediary figures like Hughes , Plath and Beuys - maybe some of our other chums - are making the transition - or parts of the transition. It really does seem to me that the trouble with SP was that she was slightly ahead of her time so that she couldnít act out enough. In another 10 years if she had been in New York and has been reciting her poems and (say) getting an accomplice to throw animal intestines at her or to threaten her with a Skilsaw not only would she have felt better but we would regard as even more of a visionary than we do now. Her aesthetic and expressive needs were just slightly ahead of the game globally and rather too far ahead socially in early 60s England.
People complain about the detachment of the last last poems - as if it was a weakness. Maybe its just their visionary post-humanity coming through.