fool.vtheatre.net - и Кино-заметки.
Книги Дурака (Первая и Вторая).
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The full text is @ "Russian Page: Exile"
SummaryThe ex-Soviets, or the New Russians, including me, have the new post-ideological mentality, like the South and North after the American Civil War. What do you do now? To continue the fight in other forms, or simply to forget about the conceptual difference, which costed so much lives? We, the postmodern citizen of the world, more tolerant or cynical -- communists and anticommunists, right and left, the first to experiment with the pure ideology, we keep living with our former enimies on the same earth. Why did the great era of ideas and ideals is gone? We discover that our enimies are in us, that we all supported the Great Unitopia, serving totalitarism and fighing against it. The Soviet Period was the time of several decades beyond national, we learned that we all on the planet are "comrades"....
NotesЭтот "проект" стал частью "Века Антохиных" и будет продолжен по-русски, оставляя англоязычный вариант на старом месте... 2008 -- ? Когда-нибудь и кто-нибудь поймет (напишет) о двадцатом веке, второй половине, после последней мировой войны, о той неосознаной надежде поколения, что теперь все будет прекрасно, уж теперь-то... Так что же случилось?
The Possessed 2003
Записки эти я начинал, когда в Кремле был Ельцин.
Думал, что от девяностых я смогу добраться до семидесятых и даже детства.
Почему я потерял интерес -- и не только к этой книге -- интерес к предмету. Интерес к себе?
Интерес к жизни?
... Теперь больше не вернется. Смерть наступила.
Думал, что от девяностых я смогу добраться до семидесятых и даже детства.
Почему я потерял интерес -- и не только к этой книге -- интерес к предмету. Интерес к себе?
Интерес к жизни?
... Теперь больше не вернется. Смерть наступила.
History as a tale, or fairy-tale?
Contents: EPILOGUE AND PROLOGUE. FIRST LOVE THE ENDING: NEXT RUSSIA UNIVERSAL HISTORY DEFENSELESS POMO HOW POMO KILLED THE EVIL EMPIRE PM-ISM
A catchy title -- "Back to the future" -- I was on the plane back to America. Flying over the Atlantic -- the time stopped, I go west -- and I panicked. It was the same hour -- even as I was in the air for an hour! Did I achieve what Faust sold his soul for? When did it happen? I don't remember -- maybe when I bought a ticket? Got on the plane? I paid to sell my soul! I can't believe it! What did I do? If I would fly over Siberia I would lose a day.... wait! Do I try to reach America wrong way? Russians moved East to get to the Wild West....(The end of the book, as in the beginning, now going for the next, the American Book. Next to Epilogue? A part of it? WHAT IS THE STORY OF EPILOGUE? And from HOW -- on the book, the way I began it. The conclusion and the prelude to A-Book.)
I look around. Nobody noticed anything. The drinks were served, lunch, dinner, movie.... God! They have no souls to notice it! You know what was really wrong? The absence of accident. If the plane would crash, we all will awake. We'll scream, remember about life and death, we'll notice the miracle and mystery of us FLYING! I was waiting for it -- the catastrophe to escape the catastrophe of time. I wanted my mortal life back, my soul -- where was he, Lucifer? I tried to guess him -- not this one, too ordinary, could it be a woman, or even a child? Ah! The fly attendant! But it's just his job. I remember Goethe -- the smell. The reconditioned air and a perfume. What do I have to do? To pray? I can't get on my knees, not even in the bathroom. God help me! If I did it, Lord, I didn't mean it!
I was searching for my soul and couldn't find it. I had mind, yes, some body -- I was helpless on my back. My heart?...
EPILOGUE AND PROLOGUE. FIRST LOVEDid I tell you already that I spent two years writing my American Book in order for me to write about New Russia? Anybody who is interested in the future of Russia should think about the future of America. There are no Russian answers and no "Russian Question." I have to disappoint Solzhenitsyn and the conscientious Russians; there is no Russia out there to ask and answer.
Are there any new features in the new global history? Ideas? Innovations? (Moscow Institute for Social Innovations was very popular before 1991, there was a department with the same name in the St. Petersburg Committee of Culture). Do we need them when we have Internet? The political (social) revolution today has technological forms. Computerization of Russia is not an economic issue, as the electrification before -- it's the politics. How much could New Russia contribute to our future? In my Russian phone book many names have new addresses -- in English. That's the global village for you. Russia can't afford its future. Russia should be happy that it's still on the map. The global future is ruthless; the speed competition knows no mercy. Why do you think we have so much troubles with Iraq or Iran? They fight for their existence; the moment they open themselves to the world their traditional national identities will enviporate.
I left Russia with a sense of deja'vu; I saw it all before. I saw it fourteen years ago -- in New York. Then they call themselves "Russian Americans"! How different are the American Russians? I do not claim that there is no difference between Japanese Americans and Japanese in Japan. There is a difference between Americans who live in New York and in L.A.; even between New Jersey and Connecticut, between East and West Side in Manhattan.... I try not to be radical, but the power of the American Idea is in acceptance of death of space, history and nationalities.
All right, when I went to Russia in 1992, I thought that perhaps Russia still has the mad radicalism to be a frontier of history. That Russia will open itself as a territory for anybody to walk in, that Russia with her passion for anarchy could become the New World. With no taxes, government, concerns for national identity, politics -- and the global business will move in from all corners of the globe. That likewise during the Peter's time Europeans will live in Russia and will be Russians. I thought that the nukes in the hands of the native Russians will be enough to keep them in control of their land and our history.
I was wrong. There was no Russia in Russia to be mad and radical. There were no Russians over there to go for a real future. The Russia, which threw itself in social experimentation of modernity and postmodernity, died. There is no Mother or Father Russia to stomach the next century. Perhaps, it's too much to ask from them. I don't ask from Swedes or Brazilians to lead the human kind into next millennium. They, my Russians, did enough of moving and shaking already. They in the Soviet uniform scared the West to point of extreme militarization and enormous accelerating of technological progress. Thanks to the Soviet threat we have the wonder of high tech! Every time I get on Internet, remember that it's the gift of the Cold War. Oh, they, the Russians, did a lot. They, under the name of Soviets, are the best chapter in American Age. They were true Americans, challenging the old world (they called it "capitalism"), immigrants to their own country (they renamed it) and revolutionary. They worked hard on history and I shouldn't ask for more. Let China drive us crazy, let them revolutionize the future. Let them challenge the American Idea with the Chinese Age....
This Russian prophet I lived next on Dostoevsky Street was right. The Russians taught the world of universal brotherhood, through the fear of the nuclear annihilation they taught us human comradely. If not for them America wouldn't enter the stage of communist history and Americans would still live in the USA. Thanks to the Russians we lost our provincial American citizenship. We became the producers of the global citizenry. We lost the country and gain the world. We are not afraid anymore of our communist future and we are the avant-garde of the world communist revolution. Of course, we don't know about it. The Pilgrims didn't know that are Americans. But this is the subject of another book.
I lived seventeen years (1999) as an American, most of it as a middle class. I worked, raised children, paid taxes. Yes, I thought of myself as a writer but never respected "writer" in me. It was a private life and should keep it. I never knew myself too well and my writing is a late shot at maturity. Each day adds miles to my distance from Russia. From time to time I myself see again in Moscow, but I also see myself in New York. I see myself driving in Virginia or in Vermont. I see myself in Europe.... Sometime I want to write in Russian. Or read a good Russian book. But so many other books I wish to read. Places to go....
I committed this unforgivable Russian sin, I left Russia. There is more, I cursed Russia. I sentenced them all. I did it many time -- in Russia and outside of Russia. Russia will never recover because of my spell. Nothing could change it, even myself. I did it in my heart, I can't reverse it. This book is my confession and my last word.
I was very Russian and I was Soviet, I didn't respect myself. I did to myself what Russia did to me. I never value ME.
.... Only memories are dramatic. The actual events are not....
How does Resurrection manifest itself in Post-Russia? Americanization? The Outside and Inside.
The resurrection of the world doesn't take place "outside" -- it's always inner process. All the changes we see are results of the changes taking place inside each of us. We cause them all, this machine of resurrection is called a soul. Our present or future determined by our moods no less than by the speed of technology. Our discoveries and innovations are possible because of new sensitivity. Technology rests on this invisible firmament of emotions. Our social conditions are of our desires, no matter how different they could look like next to our dreams.
My solitude is a fact, which has to be recognized at last. R(resurrection). Being is in being separated from everything, including myself (death), never was experienced to the full. Nothing new could be found in the fact, the new is my relations with the fact. Why was I shocked by the simplicity of the answer? Why didn't Jesus declare the death of God? Because there was another one for him to discover -- God was there, closer than ever. He was God.
Am I mad not to wish best to Russia? Why should she live and prosper? Even if it's just Russian corner of the world. A thousand years from now I would like to cross the stone bridge to the Red Square, down and up to the St. Basil. Maybe the big hotel on the right won't be there, but the Kremlin will stand. Even the Mausolem, the reminder of the Soviet years.
Make your peace with Russia and life. Resurrection is a labor of life.
.... I left Russia as I did it first time, without saying goodbye. Just got on plane and left. The first time around I thought that I never be back and there was pain. This time my heart was empty. "Yes, yes, of course," I lied, knowing that I do not want to be back. Maybe I am wrong again, I can't trust myself anymore. Of course, this is possible. Everything is possible.
THE ENDING: NEXT RUSSIAFrom Utopia to Virtual Future? Here's a solution for you -- the ideal could exist as long as it's not real. I don't have it, the utopian vision. Utopia is something we have together. I can't have my personal utopia. what would I do with it? There is nothing wrong with utopia, as long it knows that it's just utopia. FUTURE OF THE FUTURE is in question.
Utopia? Why can't I feel this about my future anymore? Why can't I be in love with life? I want to close this book, to put it away. To forget? If I wouldn't have the past, I would crave for future again. I must leave Russia behind me, and wait for a tomorrow, because I have no past, only future.... Russia? What Russia? Utopia.
What do I say? What future? I remember too much....
Why should I remember? Who else? You don't have to remember, you are young, so many of you, you have so much time. And you who is not born yet. You take it away from me. Make it your Russia, your past, your pain.
I guess, I'm an incurable communist to finish the book with the appeal to others, to all. They say it's a nostalgia, very postmodern feeling. But I don't think so. There must be some medicine against it. Something to make the pain to go away....
Oh, this freaking Russian "either/or mentality"! Don't curse it; it's bad only in the mortal world of living. It's good outside of it.
Of course, they are afraid of the West. They better stick together because they are Russians only in group, among the Russians. Take one of them out and see how much Russia will be on him. Only the garbage, the dust of Russia. (Brodsky was from Russia. He died as a poet, a Russian poet as well. That's a Russian man for you).
.... I look back. Of course, I look back. I do not know what I could done differently. Maybe I should stay with my writing, the other plays. But what did I have? Only the promises, not real plays. The real ones live without writer. And the real writer can't live without writing. I look back and I do not understand. I write and than I read what I wrote -- and I still don't understand. Maybe I am not supposed to understand what happens with me. Maybe this is impossible. There are many impossible things in this world.
I was wrong too many times. St. Petersburg, the Spring of 1992. No, I do not look (I didn't look) for a Western imitation by Russia. The Russian and I thought that something else, besides the known, is possible. Not the "third way" -- but the OTHER way.
What did you expect? I wanted them, not even me, to take a new step.... I lie. I wanted to be one of them.
I came back to Russia, expecting to go beyond my American experience. Whatever was new to them, so-called "New Russians," was my reality and my past. You, stupid, what did you expect from them, who never travel, who never had it? The difference between the Russian and the Soviet intellectual in tremendous. I was continued to travel a decade ahead of Russia.
Yes, I expected that Russia would be the place where they will listen. Where else could I go? To China? I wanted to listen and learn? What was there I didn't know before I left to live my American life? I didn't find it. I heard it then in the seventies when I was young. What did I think, expecting discoveries? Where did they have to come from? The generation after me? Our own generation was as powerful as the one before us, the sixties. (In Diary on reading -- Shepenko, rehearsing "Van Hallen").
So, I did the only thing which was left. I went back home. To myself. I write those pages in hope that I can find what I didn't find in my travels.
Why didn't I do it before? I tried. Sort of. But I never tried to write a book. Not "working" on a manuscript, but the book, the way Marquez spent twenty years writing his book. Even now I do not write a book, not really. The book's supposed to demand its own space, dictate its shape.... The only excuse I have that it's a new kind of book and I have to be patient. Well, the time is now. Each day I return to my notes (see "nts"), and at the end of the day, after hours of writing, I don't know where I am. I see nothing in the mirror. "Just keep going," I whisper.
I don't know what scares me more, the size of the work done, or the labor ahead. I try to see the blessing of being in a total isolation.
Next? Oh, you should know it by now. The total denouncement of the people, crowds, classes and masses! Future belong to you, man, not to them! As long as you can claim yourself as your property. The American book is next. I ask myself to be radical -- be simple. Marx was a communist, somehow he felt good in giving himself to the masses. Heroes of the history, they all sacrificed themselves for others. Not immortals, not Olympian gods! For yourself. Learn to love yourself. Next? Next is a super-American. You will be force to be social, don't put your heart into it. Just your mind. Be a flower. Take care of yourself, without concerns for me. Don't ask what country did for you, ask what you did for yourself.
Again -- the FINAL QUESTION: What's next?
Of course, I want to know what is next! Silly you! ... Don't I know? I am the next!
Oh, the West will get involved one way or another in Russia's problems. Will get sucked in. Like in Bosnia. Even if the situation would stay the same. Can't the trouble stay "balanced"?
Soon they won't able to sell the arms; technology wouldn't be there -- the Soviet science is destroyed. Next?
Is it a society or an individual in question? Time doesn't die even after the end of history; in paradise it accelerates. We are the biggest danger for us.
I would view the humanity situation differently, if not for children. That's how little I'm concerned about the humankind. I lost all my attachments. The trust between man and men is violated. Not a conflict but a war against an individual. Today news -- that's how the victory looks like.
UNIVERSAL HISTORY into UTOPIA?
The growing pains of COSMIC civilization? The Global Village is a threat. Not only its reality, but the non-vision future for all of us.
Paradise doesn't challenge. But we are not only occupants of paradise, we're its makers!
Is Paradise self-destructive? Deconstruction theories were born recently.
.... I know that I will think about it again. About Russia, about myself. I know that much. I know that I write more. About Russia as well. Not the Russia in Russia, another Russia. I do not like the "historical" pages in this book, the chapter "1991" and the politics (Zhirinovsky, Yeltzin). I do not understand it, I guess, the history. Or maybe I am not interested in this kind of history....
America has no answers to Russia's questions. They have no answers to their own problems. Hey, do you have the courage to ask questions? Solzhenitsyn never asks, always answers. Are there really "Russian" questions? Russia's future takes placenot in St. Petersburg or even Moscow, but outside of Russia.
What? The political stagnation is ahead, till inner deterioration of American society would force the change. How long would it take to get to the point of changes? Changes with no changes. They are not in control and can't be in control. They are controlled by the flow of events. Nobody is in control, only pretending. Like here.
.... Oh, I am in my "PostAmeriKa" book already, the story about the Good Empire, not the Evil Empire. Well, Russia wasn't the Evil Empire, even the Soviet Russia. Maybe she wasn't "good" or not that "good" -- but she wasn't evil. She only acted this way. She wanted to be the Great Empire and that was the problem. Who doesn't want to be "great"? Great is better than good, right?...
There are "Russians" everywhere, "Russians" in a general sense. Like humans. I see them in America. I see more and more of what I left behind. I wrote the Russian book to understand America, its future. In fact, my American book is about a higher level of communism. That's why Russia could afford a life without the state communism. I have a difficult time calling it "new Russian revolution" -- there was no fight, almost none. Even if the communists will come to power there will be no reverse in general direction of Russian reforms. So what is this American Age which arrived to Russia? (There are several features of American communization we all know about. PC -- when everybody spy on everyone. I remember letters to the Editor in Pravda)....
....They talked to me and I understood them. I answered them. It wasn't Russian! I know it, I know how Russian language sounds. Oh, the miracle! God let me speak in tongue I don't know! English? Yes!...
I broke the tradition. I'm the first male in my line who hadn't kill other human being. My father and men before him killed people of behalf of the country. I hadn't I thought about it and I think that the only reason why I didn't do it because I wasn't borne.
I was a young man when I lived with the thought that I'm no more than a compost for the future. What a Russian smell! It was painful. To be a transition, a modem? I wanted to be the goal, not the means.
When I was a child, I didn't know that I am a Soviet. When I was a Soviet, I didn't know that I am trespassing. I didn't know that the space is public property, Russian SPACE. I walk in the forest without driving license.
I guess, the Anti-Russian Book asks for the Anti-American counter-part.
DEFENSELESS POMOTo insist that pomo exists is a bad taste. What do I say -- that computer isn't a machine? Or that there's a difference between a laptop and a steam engine? Since pomo is rooted in the present, it must be "modern," but there is a span of two centuries between the fall of Bastille and the Berlin Wall. This "modern" has to stop its tyranny, if history and progress (the modernism's favorites) indeed do exist! If we have to abolish time to put the end to it, we'll kill the history and progress in order to have them -- the changes.
So, we did. Now what? An imitation of history and time? That's postmodern for you. The total After.
If you think modernism had its problems, let me tell you about the problems of pomo. PM is a strange end and a bizarre beginning. You don't know what to do with it. Before we had nice negations, you know, from the low to the higher, bearded Marx and Darwin, the evolution and revolutions, we were going somewhere.... We still moving with ever increasing acceleration, but now we are in a cold sweat of realization that the machine of glorious humanity has no breaks. We are in control of everything except for ourselves.
I have a practical concern over this black cat of pomo in the dark room of modernity. I'm working on the Grand Idea for New Russia. It has to go beyond the postmodern, way further. Since I can't live in Russia, I could do something for motherland from abroad. Russians will never buy anything Russian, sausages or theories. They don't trust the quality of Russian made products. It has to be imported, translated and misunderstood.
THE TOP SECRET PROJECTWhen Yeltsin called for a development a new ideology for Russia, I decided to submit my PPM proposal. I thought that I am best qualified to offer Russian a new grand idea, a meta-narrative, as we say nowadays. I was Russian, I have been an American, I should know the future. To be convincing I started with Russian history and the West, then marxism, communism and Soviet era, I wrote about the late capitalism in America and discussion of the postmodern. That was the most difficult part, keeping in mind that Yeltsin hasn't read much Foucault and Deleuze. I had to make it simple and easy for him to explain to the Russians. I knew that a lot of my ideas will be lost in his capricious mind, then twisted by the media and, finally, misunderstood by the people. I had to make my proposal of the New Ideology for New Russian very appealing. Something like Zhirinovsky's presidential campaign with the offer of a free vodka bottle for every adult.
Russians were different, they couldn't live in peace and comfort like Americans unless they understood the purpose of living. Their life before the revolution wasn't bad, at least, better. Even their Soviet life wasn't that bad, but they didn't feel it. We are humans; one could be rich and healthy but unhappy. The idea makes all the difference. Americans put their canned laughter and, a lot of little smiles everywhere, because they have no Grand Idea and none of the American presidents ordered to develop it. Two century ago there was the Constitution, but today it's the old news (?). The new must be fresh....
Russians like to be original, they can't just take American model and be happy. They are not Japanese. They could brake their neck with the wrong idea, but it has to be new and theirs exclusively. Traditionally, it has to be radical and excessive. Russians respect something they don't understand. In the country where being an Orthodox Christian was an equivalent of being Russian, they crashed the churches and burnt icons, becoming instant atheists. (I have to come with something like that. Only the outrageous will do the trick. Something very stupid which makes perfect sense).
They have to be ahead of the world and it has to be above their heads. So, what is after the postmodern, which Americans still do not study in high school? I am not talking about the future, I need a theory from the after-the-future. Something to look at and say -- what the hell is that?!
My problem was not the lack of ideas but the abundance of them. They have crowded my mind, yelling like on a stock market floor, especially after my announcement that I am about to construct the grand theory. Each wanted to be in, to take a lead.
I knew that I have to deal again with the KGB, because such matters are in milieu of the state security. I assumed that they will be oversee the development of the super-ideology for strategic needs of Russia. Writing my proposal I saw the future trajectory of my project, when it will travel through offices and departments till it will reach the plateaus of Russian competence in that building I knew very well. I wanted to impress them, to make them reach the phone and call the office above. "Listen, Vanya, I got something I want to show you. Yes, the thing. I'll be right there." I wanted them to get exited.
Of course, I had to keep my research secret. Untill now.
.... I'm joking, joking.
POMO needs no defence. Apolitical and non-social, pm is not interested in attacking anybody or proving anything. I like this relax California style of pomism. Pomo is a cool costumer. You can scream and insult pomo in his face, but the dude will only smile with the left side of his mouth. He is fine, not like his parents, who would sacrifice themselves for every stupid idea they could find in some self-published books. I don't have to defend pomo, it rules.
I was Russian for too long not to write about it. "For every image of the past that is not recognized by the present as one of its own concerns threatens to disappear irretrievably." And I did. Boris, sorry that the proposal is so big.
.... No, this is not how it works, friends. This is not how I see it. It has to be big, great, for eternity, you know. It has to be beyond, understand? That's the preconditions of resurrection, which we call the "postmodern conditions." Resurrection! The big thing!....
I was a postmodernist when I was Soviet. How much I was radical in my postmodernist conditions, I understood only in America.
I have to seek help from pomo, because the modernity methods exhausted themselves. I'm sure that the Russian diet plays no less role in shaping reality than all the political parties of New Russia. The beating the dead horse of politics and sociology is a thankless occupation. Not only the complexity of life can't be reduced to politics, but after a close observation politics isn't even the most important aspect of reality in contemporary Russia (or America). Without declaring the end of history, we can safely assume that the political forms of history lost its mighty powers.
Why would we need a holistic meta-theory at the time when everything became one system? "Respect differences" (Foucault) -- Bosnia? We are sick of the universal. Are we?
Women in Russia smell bad. I suffered as a teenager. They don't know about it. They don't sense it. Lack of feelings? They are different. They smell different in Africa. Is this the difference? When we do not smell, we are the same? What Russia do you miss? Oh, why don't you shut up! Write about America!
HOW POMO KILLED THE EVIL EMPIRE
Students who never took my classes usually ask: "Who is this pomo he is talking about?"
Pomo is not a man. Nor a woman, neither an animal. It's real and it exists. Pomo is everywhere; outside and inside. Pomo rules. One might say that pomo is a phenomena.
.... Well, we can say that Pomo is a man, a "Sovietman" -- yes, he exited, he exists and most likely you saw him today. In fact, you see many of them around. They look like humans, because they evolved from the humans. Not only they look like humans, they act as humanized humans. Like the aliens they try so hard to be humans. They learn all the emotions humans have and they know how to act in all humans situations. What they do not have -- the emotions. They are human machines. While the IBM corporation tries to teach computers how to feel, PMs already know how to live without emotions. Of course, they have the emotions of the machines, the emotions that come from the brain. In computer industry we call it programs. Do you know them?
Postmodern technologies killed the biggest project of modernity -- the Soviet Utopia. copy machines, tape recorders, radio transmitters and full color mass print destroyed the Party, the KGB and the Red Army with its ballistic A-bombs. Don't tell me that pomo doesn't exist.
This geek, nerd, the weakest so, knocked dead the mighty father. It wasn't the Western ideology we were afraid of, not the ancient capitalism which was defeated by the Great Revolution, but the real ideas, the postmodern! The Polaroid camera, the instant, in hands of an ape, the technology which was so easy to operate that it becomes impossible to control. The post-industrial was the real danger. The world were the workers become obsolete, where machine work and produce and I consume. The workers' kingdom were nobody worked was waiting behind the red curtain for the arrival of the consumer society. Oh, we knew about it long before you! We were promised to have it -- communism, when I eat according to my needs.
The dreamy Russians were ahead of themselves. Well, don't we always wish what we don't have? Russian orthodox mind went beyond the modern, into the glorious After. Not having Ford factories we dreamt of Toyota plants, where the robots work and we drive the cars. We look down at Europe with her petty values and laughed at the Germans with their dedication to craft and labor. We knew that behind the steam engine is not the rail roads but the cyber-highways. Why should we invest ourselves into possible?
I had to think hard before I wrote this book. First, about the Soviet times. This experience was too exotic, too faraway from "normal and known" history. I had to step out of the space of modernism not to repeat the same marxist formulas which were useless to help me. I didn't know that the French marxists had to do the same after 1968.
Second, I didn't know how to talk about Post-Soviet Russia. I was happy to have the support of the French ex-marxists turned postmodernists. I believe that New Russia is a product of the postmodern history. Of course, the West (America) is the machine of pomo, but Russia was the one to receive this schizophrenic capitalism.
PM-ISMI felt good. I had a over the shoulder bag with two books and pair of underwear. It was more than I needed. I left my life behind. The unthinkable! Why did I think so hard about it? What did I think was about to happen? That I will get lost? Die of desperation?
I wanted to give my life to my country. Or something like that. My heart, not the body. Not anymore. Not even my mind. Not because I treasure my life, I don't value the country. It's not mine. What did they feel, the generation before? I remember that in the eighties I was sure that in the conflict between USA and USSR I would fight Russia. Now the evil Empire is gone. To fight Iraq? Iran?
Only a child could be afraid to get lost in the forest. Or the city. It was alright to lose. I grew up to learn that for a friend I have to live through thousand jerks. Why should I stick around the crowd? What can they offer me? And I have nothing for them. What country? What country could be without a national god? Without its own culture?
ODM -- you haven't learn yet about man. He will surprise you, Zarathustra. He is happy. And his happiness will make you sick and mad.
Sentimental and nostalgic? Not me, them, before, in modernity. They treasure their little ideas so much, as if they have no life of their own. They were no less brainwashed with god, they believe not, and the leaders they knew nothing about. Our self-slavery of the crowd around celebrities is a freedom next to our fathers, the slaves of history. Look at their love and how many dead they left behind because of their passions.
Why should I miss history? The wars, the blood, the terror? To lead them and to be in power? What a weak heart and a small mind! What a boring entertainment to be a king! Did you see their fashions? Before I would walk around with a single medal on my chest, I must lose my mind. Their little lives thrown away for some cause, they value themselves not much, -- why should I respect them? Oh, they had passions and feelings? What kind?
You still don't know that there is more truth in screams of a rocker than in their melodic carols. That much for a true feeling of living. Not me, their didn't live, they existed.
....Disappearence of the Real? What Real? What was their real? Why for generations were they impressed with Colliseum or Pantheon? Why should I be fasinated with the St. Paul in Rome and not with the Grend Central in New York? Thirty years ago I was moved by Rembrant, but I have to work very hard to appreciate it. I have to envoke my historical imagination. I have to help myself to remember the superiority of the Battleship Potemkin over Terminator....
Father or Mother Russia, what do you have? Are you ready to have a son? My parents were looking at me without much attempt to understand, they watched me. Their love had a quality I never understand. One would think that the older generation has all the advantages to be ahead of the young. How about this famed wisdom? Forget it, we have "senior citizens," not sages. We keep them around because of mercy. They weren't ahead, but behind.
Did you read the classics recently? You should. Open the big books and see for yourself how primitive their subjects and even more so their subjectivity. No, postmodern doesn't quote -- they have to be corrected! The crowd does it, we both have the same past, the same sky.The postmodern would be that which, in the modern, puts forward the unpresentable in presentation itself; that which denies itself the solace of good forms, the consensus of taste which would make it possible to share collectively the nostalgia for the unattainable; that which searches for new presentations, not in order to enjoy them but in order to impart a stronger sense of the unpresentable. A postmodern artist or writer is in the position of a philosopher: the text he writes, the work he produces are not in principle governed by preestablished rules, and they cannot be judged according to a determining judgment, by applying familiar categories to the text or to the work. Those rules and categories are what the work of art itself is looking for. The artist and the writer, then, are working without rules in order to formulate the rules of what *will have been done*. Hence the fact that work and text have the characters of an *event* (AA); hence also, they always come too late for their author, or, what amounts to the same thing, their being put into work, their realization (*mise en oeuvre*) always begin too soon. *Post modern* would have to be understood according to the paradox of the future (*post*) anterior (*modo*). (Lyotard 1984, 81)
I was a postmodernist before I learn the word. Because pm is a state of mind, a mood-frame.
What, "paralogism"? Around the logic. Logic and math I was tought. Why not patalogical? I have no time for logic. Logic can't be instant.
I do not dismiss the past. I stand on it. I do not worship the present. Everything is good for a god and, nothing is perfect enough. Oh, a small soul....Postmodernism, then, is a mode of consciousness (and *not*, it should be emphasized, a historical period) that is highly suspicious of the belief in shared speech, shared values, and shared perceptions that some would like to believe form our culture but which in fact may be no more than empty, if necessary, fictions. (Olsen 143)
I don't have to write a manifesto. No need to claim and declare. I am already there. Look at yourself and you should notice that you have no desire for me or the others. Perhaps, some, but as strong a your need to be alone. To be in your own bed, in your car, in your shower. What are you talking about when you're telling yourself and me how much you miss me? Leave it, I know you better. I know myself. I know us.
I am tired of modernism under the name of the postmodern. I see you naked. Your primitive revolt to do the opposite, what is so new in it? Don't expect that I will join a movement or even an intellectual revolution; I have nothing to protest against. There are so many enthusiasts, so many to debate good and evil, right and wrong. You don't need me and I not there. I have myself to be busy. 'Fear not emenies, fear the indiffrent" was a topic for a free composition in my HS. Why didn't they tell me how the difference is born?
Of course, I heard it before, the warnings. How "non-productive" this attitude is! Let me be a judge. Let me be, be my own self.
Don't use "this" word anymore; it's not "postmodernism" -- just a wisdom....
I wait for a few seconds, because I said this word -- wisdom. I know too many words which are of no use for me. The words without objects and subjects. The ancient words, from the times before resurrection. What my words do I have?
What is so pomo about me? If by being alive I have a status of being modern, the post-modern means that I'm after myself, from my own future. Pomo is my uniqueness, the only feature which separates me from the before. My story is simple. I'm tired of false complexities. Einstein becomes complicated when we assume that Newton is simple.
I don't have to defend my choices. I need no approval or even an advise. What do you know about me to answer my questions? What do I know to pretend that I can answer them?
I love a woman, a child, an animal for this decisive difference. There is no pretense that we are the same. We can relate because the most important thing we have in common is our difference. Oh, how radical I must be with myself! Why do I greaf over my life? Why can't I look at myself with indifference I react to a stanger's death? Is it really the biggest issue for me? Do I have to remember about death when I live in a new environment where everything is a reminder of time? Why do we keep the old questions which have no relevence to my experiencies?
.... Of course, America has no need for the Gulag, the country is full of PMs. Often I understand the envy of the communists in the Kremin; that's the dream country! What a material! They couldn't have them, the Americans, because they were good pomos themselves, they were Russians, they were in between. They didn't know that you do not have to shoot people to change their minds. They were primitive modernists. Uneducated and hungry. They didn't know what a revolutionary times they live in! They still do not understand.
Of course, I bitch about my life. I told you that a Russian is always a Russian. I bitch about people because I don't believe in God. It was prohibited by the law of resurrection. It took me a while to understand why in the KOG everyone must be a communist.
I have a simple explanation for everything what took on Earth place during my life. The existencial idea was the last breath of modernism. The moment we stopped talking generalities and noticed a single individual, we rediscovered that he is mortal. He was neglected, with his fears and moods, the little human. Forget, the fiction, look at me -- do you want me be exited about things which have no relevancy to me. Progress, future, humanity. I'm a son of my times too, like them, the customers and consumers, I am preoccupied with myself. With my insignificant and unknown to history presence. I notice myself, I discovered that I existed. It was a surprise.
It was a shock. I never recovered from it.
Get out you photos, look at them and tell me why do you have it? Why do we need them? Talk now about Proust.
.... Oh, we pomos remember it, the life, the feelings. We traded souls for comfort, but miss ourselves, the humans.
Are you surprised that my weight and diet matter to me? That I am concerned with my looks? And would like to have good teeth? Why are shocked? Only because this primitive existentialism is so different from the high modernism of Camus? How did you expect me to take the news of the great minds?
.... No, we are not to go back. We made our minds. Thanks, but no thanks. We, the pomos, have no country, no gender, no family. You can find it all in the writings of the Socialist Realism. It was done for the future generations, for us. That is us!
I spend so much time talking about history and humanity because this *my own experience*! I told you, a pomo lives on ideas. He is super-human ("super-man" is factually and polically incorrect term, there are only man and woman in appearence in our world). Listen, the world revolution was the goal of the Bolshevicks, this revolution took place and their regional super-power became obsolete.
I am finishing this last part, the "After-Russia" and it's time to speak not about Russia? Isn't my Russian life and those WASTED YEARS in Russia are not enough of a lesson? Precisely. That's why I can't let it go, because I think it was an investment. I have to get the knowledge out of the memory. I have to tell you know what I know about your future, my fellow Americans. Not the Post-Americans, but the ones who are not pomos yet.
Look, perhaps, somebody else has his own story and thinks that his life is the history. It's his story. This one was mine.
Oh yes! My First Love? Yes, I remember that I promissed your this story. I told this story. I love Russia because she is gone. Almost gone. The past has this interesting similarity with the future; it's never present, and -- doesn't exist. But if the future is something we have to find, the past has this quality of being lost. (Do I have a nostalgia for the future?) I write about the past because of this feeling in my chest, the pain. I know, it's my heart. I know how love feels and I don't know what to do with it. Not as if I want to return there, not even to visit. I don't want to preserve it forever, this annoying habit of modernity to take photographs. Than what do I want? I don't think that the answer is in the past. I suspect it's the future which makes my heart feel pain.
Perhaps I hide it from myself, the modernist desires of Faust. Maybe, I do want time to stop and keep the moment forever. But not the actual time (I was suffering then), no, I want to preserve the MEMORY of it, free from the reality of living. Only the best, selected and edited -- the dreams, the hopes, my future life which was so big and unknown.
I haven't change time on my watch. I arrived to NY as if I still was in Moscow. It was the same hour -- there was no difference between Russian and American time! I don't know why they insist that there's the time difference between two countries. I WAS THE TIME. For the Russians I disappeared like the last light of this day. I was gone, seized to exist. How would they know am I alive or dead? That's why we need telephone.
PS. Boris, sorry that the proposal is so big. (I never send this manuscript to Yeltsin.)
@1999-2004 film-north * Next: postAmeriKa *