Description: A review and summary of the key themes of this course, such as consensus narrative, organic form, and the multiplicity principle.
Instructor: David Thorburn
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PROFESSOR: I wanted to use this final time-- hour we have together to summarize a few of what I take to be the central themes of course, the organizing ideas that, at least have seemed to me, to structure our argument and our progress through these, through this almost 100 years of movies. The first idea, one that we've come back to, I think, again and again, has to do with what we might call film in its anthropological or sociological aspect. Film as a cultural form, as an expression of a culture, as something that grows out of a culture, that expresses the values and prejudices and well weirdness of a culture. From this angle, questions of aesthetic value, questions of artistic excellence, are irrelevant in some sense. From this angle, we're thinking about film simply as a central expression, as a central habit our culture. Itself and we might recognize that in the 20th century, where film was the dominant narrative form, the film performed functions in the 20th century that earlier forms of storytelling, of narrative end drama, had played in earlier cultures.
And one of my deep desires in the course, one of my implicit ambitions all the way through, was to encourage you to think about movies in this way, as an expression of the values and assumptions on the 20th century cultures, which might be in earlier times have been expressed in other media. And it was important for me to have you recognize that our 20th and 21st century, although it's somewhat different in the 21st century, because films are-- film is undergoing such a profound transformation in the digital age. Nonetheless, in the 20th and 21st century, audio, visual narrative is a dominant experience for virtually everyone in the world. In earlier societies, we didn't have this option, but it didn't mean that the functions played by the movies weren't played by earlier forms. So that's been one of the deep assumptions, one of the recurring principles to which I've recurred through the course.
And another aspect of this idea, something I've come back to, I think several times, has been the relationship between storytelling and culture. And drawing especially on certain anthropological and historical sources, I've tried to suggest to you that one way of understanding culture itself, is to understand culture through its stories, is to understand that the stories a culture tells reveal the culture in basic ways. Not necessarily reveal the culture at its best, although sometimes they may do so, but they reveal the culture in powerful and central ways. And some of our work in this course, as I hope you recognize, has been attempt in some ways to recover what might be called the cultural, or the anthropological, or the sociological assumptions and beliefs that are embedded in our movies.
One of the most important aspects of this principle of storytelling as intimately connected to the progress of culture has to do with an idea I suggested early in the term, the idea that culture itself-- and this is what I think, one of the great insights of 20th century cultural history, cultural analysis-- is the recognition the culture itself is a completely unfinished thing, that it's never a single fixed item. That culture itself is, society itself is always in the process of evolving and changing. That it's idea of itself is always in flux. This is an immensely productive way of understanding what society is, because what it allows us to do is recognize that the various expressive and other-- especially the expressive forms of a culture, play a central role in what we might call this ongoing attempt of a society to define and renew itself according to various values and assumptions, and historical inheritances. But also that the culture uses these stories as a way to react to disturbances and challenges to the social fabric.
And remember, borrowing on the great English cultural historian Raymond Williams, I suggested in an earlier course, in earlier class, that one of the ways to think about this process is to imagine culture itself as consisting of sort of three strands or voices. An emerging voice, which represents new ideas, the future, right? Emergent voices. Dominant or central voices, where the central values of a society are embedded and articulated. And on the other side, what might be quote traditional or vestigial voices. The voices or energies that are losing force, losing power, as society changes, that belong to a past, but are still part of the mix. And once we understand that culture is this constant sort of our ongoing, mixed conversation amongst traditional, dominant, and emerging voices, we begin to understand much more about the complexity of how a culture proceeds.
And of course, what this also does, once we make the link between the stories a culture tells and the cultures' idea of itself, we can recognize that this same process can work for understanding stories. It's immensely liberating, immensely illuminating, to recognize that of course films, like other forms of narrative, are going to do contain elements that are not completely coherent, not completely in agreement. That they actually may sustain contradictions. That films, like other forms of narrative, may very well articulate both emergent and traditional voices, and those two voices may be in conflict, or at least not in perfect coherence in a particular text. So, one of the advantages of this perspective is to allow us to recognize something of the complexity, even the dynamic and potentially partly contradictory elements that we may find in particular films.
So the idea that culture is always unfinished, never a fixed or finished thing, and that the stories a culture tells are a part of this ongoing conversation, this dynamic, always unfinished conversation about the value he was and assumptions the society lives by. I suggested a number of times that one way to think about the central or the dominant narrative forms in particular cultures, film in the 20th century, the novel in the 18th and 19th century in certain European and in American society, the public theater of Shakespeare's day, the oral formulaic narrative in the ancient world of Homer. And what I've suggested is that these narrative forms might be labeled, can usefully be labeled as consensus forms, because they understand themselves to occupy a central space in the society. That they recognize, not necessarily that they're expressing a true consensus, no society has a perfect consensus, but that what they recognize is that they're expressing what is the imagined, or the accepted, or the presumed consensus of the culture. That consensus of values may not be bought into by everyone, certainly won't be. Nonetheless, even the people who don't accept the consensus values recognize what the dominant values of the culture are, and recognize those sites, like the movies in the 20th century, that are the carriers of what we might call that official or consensus meaning.
And one of things I tried to suggest to you in the course of our discussions is the way in which, in the 20th century form of film, the central role that genre forms play in this process. And can you see why that would be true? One reason is that there's an implicit principle of repetition within variation in genre forms, because they're so familiar. Different as a late Western and an early Western might be, they're still Westerns and they share a great deal. They share certain fundamental qualities that every viewer recognizes. The more literate the viewer or the reader is in the conventions of a particular genre, the richer the uses of that genre become, especially as the genre elaborates itself over time.
And one of the things I've tried to show you by talking, especially about the Western in American society, was to suggest that we can actually understand some of these genre forms as in some sense mirroring the debate a society may very well be having about its own nature. And that the way the Western changes over time in the history of film is a kind of distillation this process, whereby the stories of a culture help the story, help the culture to accommodate itself to changes, help the help of culture figure out how its past and its present can be brought into some kind of relation, help but help the society get used to change and dynamic challenges to its coherence.
One implication of the kind of argument I've been making about consensus narrative, as I've suggested a number of times, is that a consensus narrative always-- what I'm calling consensus narrative. We might use a simpler and less aggressive term, we might say various forms of popular culture share the same qualities with the particular form of popular culture I'm calling consensus narrative. And remember, one of the exciting things about this concept is that it shifts from culture to culture, or from era to era. The consensus narrative system of one society won't be the same as that of another society, but the systems will share certain-- in one case it might be the novel, in another case it might be the film, but both system will-- both of these forms, when there are consensus system, consensus forms, will share certain qualities.
And I've suggested that the central qualities they share are that they are always in some deep way conservative, right? They're both morally conservative, or conservative in terms of content, because they're trying to reach the whole of the society and they have to be careful about that, they can't be as advanced or as radical as the most radical, or avant garde parts of the culture, because certain elements of the culture would be alienated by it, and it's the cultural work of consensus narrative to address the center of society. So they're conservative in content and the moral values. And there are also conservative artistically. That is to say, they don't do a lot of sort of daring and shocking, technical or structural experiments. Again, because they want to be, because they aim to be understood by a large proportion of the population. They aim to be readable by everyone.
And that brings us to do a second item that's an aspect of, always a fundamental aspect of consensus narrative, they're accessible. That they are written or created in a language according to archetypes, or stereotypes, or shared tropes and conventions that are accessible, readable to the whole of the society. And a final feature that these texts always have is that they are collaborative. And I've suggested earlier in the course that one way to think about how collaborative the movies are is to recognize in every movie is itself a collaboration. That you can't make a movie-- one person can never make a movie. That a movie is always a collaborative form. But, I mean this idea of collaboration in a deeper way as well. Not only is the text, are the text of movies literally collaboratively created by many, many creators, but they're collaborative it another way, in a deep way.
Of course the most obvious one is the way in which you all genre forms collaborate with themselves, the way they're in a kind of conversation with all prior instances of the genre. And what that means is the genre forms are collaborating with their history, their collaborating with their-- and they're also implicitly collaborating with the audience's literate knowledge of what these genre forms are like, how they behave, what the expectations in them are.
And their collaborative in yet another way, and this aspect of their collaborative characters is one that I haven't emphasized too much, and I want to do it today in our final, in our farewell lecture. They're collaborative also because these text, in some deep way, are collaborating with what we might call the collective wisdom or values of the culture. And this is implicit in what I've been saying about the way these story forms draw on the histories, and stories, and conventions that are most widely shared in a culture. But I want to clarify what I mean by-- so there's that kind of collaboration, in which they're constantly borrowing forms, and arguments, and principles, and symbols from the vast body of shared knowledge that a culture might have.
But what this might actually lead to-- one thing this leads to is the recognition that these cultural forms are not always noble or wonderful, that they carry prejudices, that they carry racism, that they carry misogyny, that they're going to embody, that the study of these texts is not necessarily, never should be a totally celebratory experience, even though many of these texts are what valuable, and lasting, and speak to us in deep and powerful and useful ways. It's also true that these text carried the lies and prejudices of the cultures from which they come, as I've said a number of times in the course. Perhaps too many times.
But I mentioned again in this last lecture, because I want to also mention that there's a way in which, not just the evils and the limitations of a society that get expressed in the collaborative consensus forms that emerge from them, but also sometimes the wisdom of society does too. In other words, what I want to suggest to you is that the collaboration has to do not only with inherited values, and inherited beliefs, and inherited story forms, they also have also have to do with the kind of inheritance of wisdom.
And I have a particularly exciting way of distilling this for you. There's a passage, one of my favorite passages, from Shakespeare, from his from his great late play Cymbeline. From Act four, scene two, in which a group of characters gather around a body. They think the body actually comes alive later in the play, because there's a lot of wonderful magic in the play, it's a play about redemption and rebirth. But at this moment in the play, they think this person is dead, and they single dirge. It's one of the most-- a dirge, a song, a funeral song, a song or a poem to be sung or recited at a graveside. And there's, maybe the greatest of all such dirges is in English, is in Cymbeline.
And this is the first stanza and the greatest stanza, fear no more-- right there, people are standing over corpse. Fear no more the heat of the sun; Nor the furious winter's rages, Thou thy worldly task hath done, Home art gone and taken thy wages. Very interesting to image, to embrace a metaphor of working, a working class metaphor. You're dying, and the metaphor is, you've taken your last wages, you finished your work. Home art gone and taken they wages. And here comes the couplet that I think is most powerful. Golden lads and girls all must, as chimney sweepers, come to dust.
Let me say it again so you get the whole stanza, it's quite beautiful, I think. Fear no more the heat of the sun; Nor the furious winters' rages, Thou thy worldly task hath done, Home art gone and taken thy wages. Golden lads and girls all must, As chimney sweepers come to dust. Now think about those last lines for a minute. They're very powerful, even if you don't exactly get them. Golden lads and girls, the implication is high born, wealthy, golden in their youth, and in their energy and in their vitality. No matter how golden, whether in wealth, or a vitality, even golden lads and girls end up in the grave like all of us. And there's, the implication of course, is there's a kind of constellation in the fact that it's-- deaths is our shared fate. It's a consoling, an attempt to console us. Although the older I get, the less consolation I find myself taking from this insight.
Nonetheless, it is a great poem, and this stanza is a particularly remarkable poem because of one element in it, the phrase, golden lads. For those of you know-- very few Americans know this, but some Brits know this. In Shakespeare's native Warwick shire, the phrase golden lad referred to something very specific. It referred to the condition of the common ordinary flower that we call the dandelion. And it's a flower that has a gold cup when it's young, and then when it goes to seed, and you've all seen them, because they're native to North America as well as England. The top of the cap turns into a kind of rounded series of filaments, a beautiful round cap and when you-- a lot that children pick them and blow them, and the seeds blow all over.
One of the reasons that these common weedy flowers are so common, is that they're so brilliantly designed by nature to propagate, because the wind blows their seeds all over the place. Do you all have an image of this? So when you're young, the flowers have these golden caps, and then when they go to seed, they become these, they have these rounded filaments on the top. And these rounded filaments, in Shakespeare's day, were called golden lads when they-- were actually called, these flowers were called golden lads when they were in bloom, and they were called chimney sweeps when they went to seed, because they looked exactly like a chimney sweepers broom. Chimney sweepers we take these rounded brooms and put them up in chimneys to clean them.
So when Shakespeare writes in the end there, he says, golden lads and girls all must, as chimney sweepers, come to dust. He's describing literally the phases of life in a flower. Why is that wonderful? Can you see why that's wonderful? Why that's what art is? Because of course, what's happened is that, what Shakespeare did was create a brilliant metaphor out of something that's profoundly concrete. So the phrase golden lad and chimney sweeper actually refers to the life cycle of a flower. Well think of how much more consoling, how profoundly brilliant the lines become, when actually Shakespeare's metaphor is literally linked to the passages of nature, to the progress of nature. So what I'm calling your attention to is a brilliant piece of poetry, a piece of poetry that has a kind of richness and complexity that almost couldn't be better. And even when we don't know that about the flower, we get the meaning of the lines, but think how the lines come alive once we recognize that the progress of human life in those couplets is being explicitly associated with the life cycle of a natural object of a flower.
Now this is a great act of poetic geniuses, isn't it? But where does the genius lie? Where does it come-- Shakespeare is collaborating with the wisdom of his culture. It takes Shakespeare to figure it out, I mean I'm not saying that it is an act of genius for Shakespeare to realize the metaphoric implications of this, he did, but the metaphor is embedded in the way ordinary people named that flower for hundreds and perhaps thousands of years. Shakespeare is collaborating there with the wisdom of his culture, with the shared understanding of his society, in order to make that brilliant line of poetry. So we can take that idea that, the notion of golden lads, as a kind of emblem for the collaborative energies that are sometimes released when artists collaborate with the traditions of their culture, with the traditions of naming, with the traditions of understanding, that are embedded-- and so therefore the collaboration is a deep one. It's an intellectual, and an expressive, and a creative collaboration between the societies understanding of things, the cultures understanding of things, and the artists interaction with those. And that's an aspect of, an even deeper aspect of what I mean when I say, that consensus narrative, and that movies are a collaborative art form.
I've also tried to suggest, again and again in the course, that there are films and many of, most of the films we've seen in the semester, also deserve the designation art. And I don't want, I've not really wanted to turn the term art into a kind of elitist category from which we must sort of retreat in awe, and sort of before it. I want us to think of art in a simpler and, I think more useful way, as a form of intelligence and competence. In other words, when things are done well in a work of art, when a movie as well made, when a poem is well made, we admire it and we respect it, and we don't have to get mystical about the qualities of art in order to recognize that intelligence and competence are qualities that we value in other aspects of experience, as well as an art itself.
What do I mean specifically by intelligence incompetence? The most profound way of understanding this argument has to do with what I've spoken about a number of times in the course, I've sometimes used the phrase organic form to explain what I meant in this regard. But essentially the idea has to do with the sense, with a recognition that a serious artist will use instruments that further his or her intentions effectively and fully. That is to say, that there's a connection between the formal or stylistic choices that an artist makes, and the content that is part of the art work. That is to say that there's a link or a connection between the formal choices that a writer or a filmmaker makes and the content intended to be communicated.
And we can think of the term competence as having to do simply with the idea of technical mastery. In other words, a competent poet is a master of language, is a master of metaphor, is a master of grammar. You can't be a great poet if you have no understanding of grammar whatever, because you be you'd be throwing away one of the great technical resources of the language, which is the complexity that grows out of a mastery of grammar. By the same token, you couldn't have a serious filmmaker who didn't have a deep profound sense of what it meant to create a visual story, what it meant to try to embody meaning in audio, visual ways. You couldn't have a great filmmaker who is oblivious entirely to the visual nature of his experience. The filmmaker would-- any serious filmmaker has to be always aware of the special qualities and properties of the medium in which he or she is working.
So if we think or art then, not as a mystical category, but as an expression of intelligence and mastery, intelligence and competence, perhaps we've demystified it a bit, and given us grounds for actually making judgments about particular films, and particular passages, and moments in film. And let me remind you again, that a second version of this argument about the relationship, at least in part about the relationship between art and what I had sometimes called entertainment, the greater complexity or richness of art, can be embodied also, not only in this first principle of a connection between the stylistic and formal choices and the content. But in this second way, in the second category or second perspective as well, in terms of what I've called texture or multiplicity. The multiplicity principles.
Let me just quickly remind you of a couple of examples we've looked at in the course, just as a way of giving you some instances from which you can-- from which you can extrapolate your own responses to other texts. Do you remember for example the scene of that, that we looked at fairly closely, in McCabe and Mrs. Miller, that disturbing ironic shoot out on the bridge? In which had me murderous young killer goads a young former into taking the gun out of his holster, and shoots him down in cold blood, right?
Let me simply remind you about the way in which, part of what gave that scene it's power had to do with the fact that there was a psychological dimension to it. The young murderer who was committing the murder had been frustrated because he tried to show off earlier and not succeeded. And that imparted a terrible, horrible irony to the scene, because you realize that this murder is completely fortuitous, it's completely accidental. If that little murderer had succeeded earlier in shooting the bottle that was floating around on the frozen pond, he probably would not have challenged, he definitely would not have challenged this young farmer to try to get back his mojo and show the people around him that he knew how to handle a gun.
So what made this-- and of course, and then that already created a kind of complexity and texture. But then, when we add in the fact that this scene itself is one of the central iconic scenes in all Westerns, two males facing off against each other, ready to shoot we, come to realize that the various anti-heroic and ironic ways in which this shoot out is handled, throws a profoundly critical and disturbing light on dozens, and perhaps hundreds of earlier such scenes that have occurred in Westerns. That the very basis of the Western's embrace of violence, it's notion that you could achieve regeneration through violence, is put in question by that scene. So there's a texture or multiplicity the scene. It forwards the story, it shows a violent act, it tells us something about the psychology of the murderer, but even more than that, it resonates through the whole history of the Western, because the shoot out itself has been shown in such an anti-heroic, such an ironic light.
Texture, multiplicity. Remember the moment in Cabaret where the Joel Gray character, the interlocutor, at one point kneels down while he's talking during the mud wrestling scene, picks up a piece of mud on his finger, rubs it on his face like this, and gives himself with Hitler mustache. I mean it's a rich comic moment, but is more than that, especially in the context of, as the film proceeds. We understand from that moment that the Nazis are objects of fun and mockery. Not that dangerous, it would seem, at least at that the cabaret feels superior to it. And of course, when we think about the course of the film, when we think about how the Nazis moved from the periphery to the center of the movie, we come to recognize that that moment, especially in retrospect, that moment has a particular kind of ironic original richness, that's partly a function of the obliviousness that everyone in the cabaret, and even the Joel Gray character, despite his apparent cynicism and worldliness seems to have about-- they're innocent, they're naive about the power and danger of the rise of the Nazis.
And let me give you one last example, although there are many others that we mentioned. Do you remember the moment in the passage I showed you from the De Sica movie, Umberto D? That very brief moment where we see a man get on a tram, a bus, and sit next to someone on the bus, and the bus moves. It's a completely wordless sequence, and there's a character we've never seen in the film before who sits down next to the protagonist, no words exchanged. When our protagonist gets up and gets off the bus, the camera lingers briefly on the man he left behind, and we see that man go like this. And what I suggested to you, again, I suggested that this was a moment of richness and complexity, of multiplicity in a way. Because one implication of that scene is that the man, this stranger that we'll never meet again, that we only saw for one brief instant in the course of the film, might have concealed the story as deep as rich and as moving as that of our hero Umberto D., who is now leaving the tram, and we will shortly be following him. Again, a moment of complexity or richness that embodies central meanings, helps us to see central meanings in the text.
Well I have a final example of this kind of texture or multiplicity. It's an example I had hoped to show you what we talked about Kurosawa last week, but I didn't quite make enough time in my lecture, and I want to show it here, as a kind of final homage to that great director, and as a way of reminding you of the variety of performances that the great actor Toshiro Mifune, who plays the rapist in Rashomon, was capable of. So here is a scene, a very minor scene, actually, from the film, from the Kurosawa film, Seven Samurai, which I mentioned last time. Let me set the context for you, before I show it to you. It's a very brief scene.
Seven Samurai, which I've sometimes shown in this course, I actually toyed with the idea of having to watch both Rashomon and Seven Samurai, but Seven Samurai is a very long movie, and I sometimes warn students about it when I show it in the class. I decided not to do it, but I hope all of you over your Christmas break, soon, will look at Seven Samurai. It will resonate, especially for you, since you've just seen an earlier Kurosawa film.
Well, this immensely long film has a wonderful epic amplitude. And the long first section of the film involves, essentially, the assembling of a group of samurai who are going to go to a village to defend this village of farmers from the deprivation of bandits. When the film opens, some farmers aren't make their way to a great city, trying to find samurai who will come and defend them. And the first section of the film shows this group of samurai slowly coming together, but only six of them are in the group, because there was a seventh who tried to join them, the Toshiro Mifune character, but he was rejected in the earlier part of the film that we haven't yet seen. That we have seen, but when you look at the clip, you will not seen yet, because he's not really a samurai, he's is a commoner who was trying to fake that he was a samurai. He grew up top knot, he can handle a sword, but they could tell in various ways, he didn't know the poetry that samurai knew, a lot of ways in which they figured out that the Mifune character really was not a samurai. So they didn't let them join them.
And in this scene we're going to see, it's two or two and a half minutes long, and this is one reason I wanted you to look at it, because it's so brief, and its basic function is so simple. The point of the scene is to get the samurai to the village where the central aspect, where the central adventure of the film will take place. So we could almost think of part one as a kind of prologue, or at least an introductory preparation, and the film really isn't going to get going in one sense until after this transition moment. So the sequence we're looking at has a very simple narrative function, it's to get the samurai from the city to the rural village, and we see them making this trip. But as you'll see, the scene has a much greater multiplicity, a much greater significance than simply this simple narrative significance of moving the actors to a new location. Here we go.
And see he's following them in the back there and they say go away.
PROFESSOR: Alright, so a scene of unexpected comedy, but what else? Can you see how much is going on there? If we think about the scene for a moment, we can see, OK, the first function of the scene is to get them to the village. But it's a wonderful example of the multiplicity principle, it seems to me. It forwards the story in some simple sense, but what does it also do? It defines the samurai in some basic way. First of all, the legitimate samurai have a sense of humor. But even more than that, as we're watching this scene, what do we see, among other things? A wonderful very brief dramatization of the conflict between man and nature. Think of a raw those natural environments are in that sequence. And the extent to which we also-- the film itself is in many ways-- a sub-theme in the film is the relationship between human beings and natural forces, this scene implicitly sets that them up without doing anything fancy or calling our attention to it.
What else does it do? It defines the Mifune character really richly and fully. He's something of a clown, isn't he? He likes attention, there's something deeply theatrical about him. See the way he, he knew the other samurai were watching him when he caught the-- What else did we learn about him? He's also unbelievably competent. He jumps in that freezing water and he catches a fish with his bare hands. And one implication of this scene may very well be that one the things to the Mifune character is trying to do is show the samurai how competent is. And you see, he ends up leading them to the village. And of course, you might guess, do you think he remains excluded? No of course not, he ends up joining. He is the seventh samurai, and becomes the seventh as the film goes on.
So we, Mifune's nature is defined for us in action more than in words, we have the theme of nature versus man, we have the broader definition of the nature of the samurai group itself, and we get an action that also moves the story to a new location. And one reason that I find this example such a powerful one, is that many people watching this movie never even remember this scene, because it's hardly-- even though it is very dramatic scene, isn't it? The fact is there's so many astonishing, dramatic, visually memorable scenes in the film, that most viewers who don't have the advantage of having this scene singled out for them would never even remember it. And that's exactly why it's so valuable, it seems to me, because if it plays a relatively minor role in the film. Its role in the film is fairly simple and structural, but even in that simple two and a half minute sequence, a great deal is going on. It's a wonderful instance, it seems to me, of what we mean by texture or multiplicity.
If you are aware of this principle when you look at other forms of art, not just films, I think you'll find your sense of what is going on in a particular text, or a particular expressive form, will be immensely enlarged. And I hope you apply these ideas not just to movies in the future, but to other but to other forms of expressive experience as well. I also, at the end of this course, as at the end of every semester, am afflicted by a sense of gratitude that I can't always fully express to my students. I've been doing this for a long time, I was thinking as the class opened this afternoon looking out at your faces, I realized that one of the most amazing things about being a professor is that your basic clients stay young, and they keep you young, they keep you young, even though they also, in some ways make you more and more conscious of the gap between you and your students in some respects.
I have no doubt that part of what has made my career a satisfying one, and certainly what has made me a much, much better teacher than I might otherwise have been, has been the enthusiasm and welcoming interest that I've felt from virtually every student I've ever taught. And that's especially true in this course, and it's been especially true in the semester. So I want to end then, by saying thank you. In a way, symbolically, I'd like to say thank you to the students I've been teaching for more than 35 years at MIT, for whom you are stand ins. But most of all, I want to thank you. You make me, teaching makes me, feel serious. Being able to introduce students to these astonishing works of art has always seemed to me to be a privilege for which I was unable to express, fully, my gratitude . So thank you very much. Have a wonderful life.
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