I recently came across an amazing book. And it changes my whole view about American civilization and culture. In fact, American culture as a hegemonic linguistic code is seldom discussed in the public forum. Any culture that comes in contact with American popular culture (and literature) is forever transformed. American music, fashion, technology, and political ideas instantaneously disintegrate the indigenous culture that makes contact with us. For good or ill, American literary influence is unmistakable and unstoppable. China, India, Japan, Russia, and Brazil shamelessly reproduce all the signature elements of Western Civilization. The American genre of Science Fiction is the medium by which the future is discussed and constructed. This America is permanently enshrined as the medium of the future. There can be no future that does not pass through the prism of the American idiom. That’s a powerful and privileged position to be in. Only Greece enjoyed a similar cultural supremacy.
Chandos Ring, the title of the book, illustrates the central position of English (American) culture and language in the human achievement. At the same time the author shows that since poetry is the highest form of language in our civilization, the poetry itself is the highest achievement of the Western world. This is as much to say that our linguistic achievement directly determines our achievement in genetics, space exploration, social engineering, military strength, or even human reproduction.
Mark Chandos corrects the misunderstanding of materialist civilization – and clearly presents the argument that poetry – as the evidence of our highest linguistic achievement – is central to any cultural or scientific progress. Science is thus a form of poetry. Science has verified this thesis as far as the highest concepts of modern science is phrased in poetic terms – as String Theory, the Event Horizon, Black Holes, quarks, quantum mechanics, etc. Each of these theoretical (and unprovable) concepts are forms of poetry – not materialistic science.
In his book Mark Chandos proposes his new Theory of Poetry hoping to restore the high value of American poetry in modern overly materialistic world.
To illustrate his theory, here are his main ideas:
- Poetry must tell a narrative of power. Human consciousness operates only by story. Lyric poetry, that does not make narratives, in consequence, has failed to sustain the prestige of the human singularity: that is, poetry.
- Future poets must manipulate the vernacular with strength sufficient to outclass the alternate poem of hegemonic science to create a new human mind. The common language must challenge the asserted superiority of the linguistics of math and physics.
- The human mind must be addressed as operating on the astral plane. This perspective necessarily privileges the information of relative cosmology – and corrects the faulted assertion of terrestrial causation.
- The epic poems are star maps. The epic trope, as all sacred myth, verifies the human mind operates on the astral plane – and not the terrestrial. It is thus irrelevant to search for archeology of the sacred myth and epic poems. The epic poems are record the original source of human life – reflecting a source of spiritual cosmology. All civilizations, all archetypes of the human mind are found in narratives and texts of the epic trope.
- Consciousness is still unfinished, and How to construct great arguments thus, the poet can modify life to meet the condition of human consciousness he seeks. The poet creates the linguistic code for this new consciousness.
- The human mind is central as the supreme manipulator of consciousness.
- All human speech is prophecy.
Easy to say – hard to perform. Let’s hope that the American language takes full advantage of its position of supremacy – to make conquest of all future life.