Sunday, March 30, 2014

No Estrangement

In Tropic of Cancer, Henry Miller wrote “What need have I for money? I am a writing machine. the last screw has been added. The thing flows. Between me and the machine there is no estrangement. I am the machine……”

In a completely different context, those of us who work on computers for a living can appreciate this too. There may not be any estrangement between the machine and us either. Take away the machine from us for a few days and we might start to miss a phantom limb. In that sense we are the machine too. 

Maybe that lack of estrangement is also why there is such a nervous almost delirious energy about this book. It would make sense that the machine and he are interchangeable and producing chaotic prose. I wonder if that is what happens when we cannot separate ourselves for our machines - we produce at a frenetic pace and not all of it is truly us.

No comments: