Anne Carson wrote, in the fourth part of a three part essay called Decreation: How Women Like Sappho, Marguerite Porete and Simone Weil Tell God:
"It is no accident that Marguerite Porete calls her book a Mirror. To be a writer is to construct a big, loud, shiny centre of self from which the writing is given voice and any claim to be intent on annihilating this self while still continuing to write and give voice to writing must involve the writer in some important acts of subterfuge or contradiction."
Elizabeth Bishop wrote of the Baroque writers, that their purpose was to portray, not a thought, but a mind thinking. They knew that an idea separated from the act of experiencing it is not the idea that was experienced.
TJ Clark wrote this about Edouard Manet's 1873 painting Chemin de Fer: "The governess is reading and dreaming. For a moment she may be all outwardness and facingness, but she still has two fingers keeping her place in her book."
And Lionel Trilling’s definition of a literary idea: When two conflicting feelings are placed together and find a relationship to one another, this relationship can properly be called an idea.
An idea or two will be encouraged to emerge in this talk.