Monday, August 01, 2016

Form and function …

 Nigeness: In the Pulpit. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Blogging at its best is essentially an extension of the essay form: brief and provisional, feeling its way through a subject, written with care but relaxed and not over-polished. One difference is that a blog post is published instantly and by the author; it takes its place in a conversation (with luck) and the blogger establishes his place in a community of taste and thought (ditto). This has its risks, but there is something deeply satisfying about it. Another difference is that the technology enables a blog post to open out in ways not possible with the printed essay: for instance, through hyperlinks embedded in the text, or through pictures, video and audio. And it can evolve into quite mind-boggling forms: take a look at Anatomy of Norbiton – a blog elaborating fantastically on the ‘ideal city’ and the ‘failed life’. A favourite game among literary bloggers is to speculate about which writers from the past might have taken to blogging – Montaigne, Sir Thomas Browne, Lamb, Hazlitt, Chesterton, Orwell…
It is worth noting that the sort of blog Nige writes require a special kind of talent and a special kind of person.

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