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This is the BM Labyrinth, I THINK

Barbara's picture

For the second time, I returned to the Bryn Mawr Labyrinth to observe. I planned to devote myself to the surrounding itself. I wanted to record the vision, the feel, the smell and the sound. I brought so much curiosity with me when I went. I wanted to figure out if there was anything new? What was different as I went at a different time of the day? Any changes happened during the past seven days? However, as soon as I stayed for just a couple of minutes, I could not help thinking about the word "anthropocentric". This is a word that was accused by one of the writers we had read (I can't specify because I don't remember exactly). As I walked around the Labyrinth, sat on the bench, lay in the hammock, the instinct that - what I saw, felt, smelt, heard was really my own perception only - became stronger and stronger. Every time I moved, my experience was different. Even two places were only one meter apart, the fact that one was in the shade, the other was in the sun changed their property drastically. If there was a writing assignment that asks people to describe the lawn under their feet. One might say the grass was wet, it was true because the area was in the shade. The other person could say the grass was dry, which is no less true as well if the area was in the sun. In most cases, what is recorded is determined by the writer's stand point.

Language is a carrier and promoter of thoughts and thoughts are generated by perception. But if the perception itself is doomed to be subjective, is it ever possible to create a new language form in order to represent the world more accurate to what it is? We are trying to. We experimented with rheomode in class and we made progress each time. We want to use language to represent the world we know objectively. This is just paradoxical! Anyway, there are some more absolute truth that are described by language. Mostly they are in maths and physics textbooks and I have to say those sentences don't look so attractive to me (They are cute when you think in the context of the discipline though). They successfully killed the liveliness of "laughter" by saying something like "a mechanical wave that is an oscillation of pressure transmitted through a solid, liquid, or gas, composed of frequencies within the range of hearing".

It's not just limited to language that is subjective. Because I failed to organize my observation into orderly words this week. I adopted another method as inspired by this week's favorite Fun Home. I remember the frame that Bechdel showed herself overuse "I think" in her journal just to emphasize the fact. Drawing is very subjective and just like language it depends very much on the skills that one has. To this point, I think since I am not a camera, it is quite acceptable to scribble and express subjectively and to foreground and background so as to represent what I feel and see.