Wednesday, May 26, 2021

How stories work …

… George Saunders on Story | Joshua Hren | First Things. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

His readings are attentive to both the ethical-religious elements of the stories and their organizational and practical mechanics. Only a former engineer and cradle Catholic could invent what he calls the “Ruthless Efficiency Principle” and explain it by means of the liturgy. “We might think of a story as a kind of ceremony, like the Catholic Mass,” he writes. Because “we understand the heart of the Mass to be communion,” all “those other parts (the processionals, the songs, the recitations, and so on) will be felt as beautiful and necessary to the extent that they serve the heart of the ceremony.” 

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