Results tagged “politics” from ARTicles

Without getting too heady about it, look at Hillary and Barack's heads and apply a little dance criticism and some Marshall McLuhan and Martha Graham.The latter said, "movement never lies." I take that as gospel. McLuhan talked about how the eye can edit, pick and choose what it wants to see. But the ear must take in the whole sound of the symphony. It cannot be selective about trumpets over oboes, if both are playing at the same time.

Why is Barack making such in-roads with people even when what he is saying may be "empty rhetoric"? It is the tilt of his head, the timing of the tilt, the breakout of a smile, the way his head receives the information and listens. He is mouth and eyes. She is forehead and jaw. He is sensual and spiritual -- and, to apply further Francois Delsarte's ideas about faces and heads -- she is intellectual and physical. He seems more honest, more transparent, less calculated. Her head dodges and, then, goes on the offensive chin first to (re)butt. He only lifts his chin to her when she stretches the truth about him. 

Next debate, turn off the sound and watch their ballet. But then, to honor McLuhan, turn yourself around and just listen. It is he who stalls ever so slightly on "ums" and "ers," while she is more dependably smooth. 

Playing with the difference between eye and ear as if your life depended on it is an arts journalist's gig. Barack's making global inroads because our eyes overrule our ears and that, for the moment, shapes the way many perceive the world. Seeing is believing. It favors a particular point of view...and Barack Obama. Don't you think?

February 27, 2008 10:54 AM |


Creative Commons License
This weblog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.


    ARTicles ARTicles is a project of 
    the National Arts Journalism Program, an association of some 500 journalists in the United States. Our group blog is a place for arts and cultural journalists to share ideas and information, to celebrate what we do, and to make the case for its continuing value.

    ARTicles Bloggers Meet our bloggers: Sasha Anawalt, MJ Andersen, Alicia Anstead, Laura Bleiberg, Larry Blumenfeld, Jeanne Carstensen, Robert Christgau, Laura Collins-Hughes, Thomas Conner, Lily Tung Crystal, Richard Goldstein, Patti Hartigan, Glenn Kenny, Wendy Lesser, Ruth Lopez, Nancy Malitz, Douglas McLennan, Tom Moon, Abe Peck, Peter Plagens, John Rockwell, Werner Trieschmann, Lesley Valdes and Douglas Wolk. more

    NAJP NAJP is America's largest organization dedicated to the advancement of arts and cultural journalism. The NAJP has produced research, publications and discussions and works to bring together journalists, artists, news executives, cultural organization administrators, funders and others concerned with arts and culture in America today. more

    Join NAJP Join America's largest organization of arts journalists. Here's how more

see all archives



Recent Comments