JANE EYRE’S GOTHIC SHADOW AND WUTHERING HEIGHTS’ GOTHIC STONE

Gothic is a rather subjective term but the novels Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte) and Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte) transcend literary nit-picking. Both are the finest gothic exemplars of their generation. The two books evoke landscapes of gothic expressionism using wholly different palettes. The Bronte sisters published almost concurrently, but their masterpieces diverge on an elemental level from the first sentence of the opening chapter. Wuthering Heights is a novel howling at the gothic stone, Jane Eyre a faerie whisper from of gothic shadow.

A man walks along an empty street in the old town area of Salzburg on April 6, 2020 during the exit restrictions amid the new coronavirus / Covid-19 pandemic.

WALKING: MAP LOADS SLOW BUT CACHES AT THE SPEED OF THOUGHT

When you move through the world on foot it is slow, but the detail is unparalleled. Distilled into memory, the space and time become navigable at the speed of thought; the fastest speed you can imagine. We can call this taking possession and none of the 'faster' modes of travel take ownership of space in this way. Walking is therefore the fastest and the best and the most bohème way to move through the world.

COGNITIVE ASSONANCE

COGNITIVE DISSONANCE is a psychological state, observed when a brain holds onto a belief (about reality) in the face of persistent contradictory evidence; by somehow ignoring it. COGNITIVE DISSONANCE is stressful but not as disturbing as having to explode a belief. The brain's natural non-stress state, however, is COGNITIVE CONSONANCE, where belief is evidentially and consistently in alignment with reality. The less easily observed but nonetheless essential enabler of COGNITIVE DISSONANCE is known as COGNITIVE ASSONANCE. ASSONANCE recasts DISSONANCE with most of its stress removed so it feels almost as natural as CONSONANCE.

GINSBERG’S HOWL AND T. S. ELIOT’S THE WASTELAND

I've often heard Howl and The Wasteland paired before, in the smokeless midnight air of alt-coffee urban popups, listening for free as a mumbling hipster reads them aloud, back-to-back, in the same reverent cadence and double bass rhythm and nobody listening to the words...