gsmonks, on 21 May 2015 - 12:23 AM, said:
I'm the same way. My house is a mixture of the old and the very new. I've got the latest recording technology, but my pie-anna was made in 1886, I have a green pressed-glass fruit bowl made in 1898, I've got lots of 19th century brass instruments, I rescued a huge old beast of a Hammond church organ, which dominates my livingroom, I have lots of antiques (washboard, ice box, clay pottery ware, mechanical hand-crank meat slicer, dome clocks with spinning mechanisms, sextants, Roman coins, you name it) and endless other odds 'n' sods. I get boxes of candles from thrift stores and garage sales for heap-cheap, so I rarely switch on an electric light- only when I actually have to see something.
Perfect. That's exactly as it should be. I always say that I only add to myself, I never subtract-- and civilization should be the same way. There's nothing wrong with a modern skyscraper, but there's nothing wrong with an 18th-century farmhouse either. This is one reason that I always loved Arthur C Clarke; most of his stuff has that thread of past, present, and future running through it.
Omega, on 21 May 2015 - 12:50 PM, said:
True. But the new limerick may also be of artistic merit, and that merit may be greater to some beholders than that of the original work. I suppose "improved" is a vague term when talking about things the quality of which is impossible to objectively quantify.
The new limerick may indeed have merit, which is why I always say that people should write their own limericks and not re-write somebody else's haiku.
Omega, on 21 May 2015 - 12:54 PM, said:
Sometimes I wonder how much of that is survivor bias. Maybe 95% of it was crap, just like today, but all that has been trashed in the intervening decades. If it's lasted a hundred years, it's clearly indestructible! Of course, from our standpoint it makes no difference.
Sure, Sturgeon's Law. There's a lot of truth to that. But the point is not that the past was better than the present, but that the worst of the past is no worse than the worst of the present and the best of the past is just as good as the best of the present. Humans haven't changed in tens of thousands of years-- only their tools have. As for survival-- there are forgotten wonders out there that you wouldn't believe. And one good thing about the technology of the present is that it gives us access to it. Tons of great literature of past centuries is now available for free for your e-reader or pretty cheap through small presses. I just recently bought a collection of turn-of-the-century (20th century, that is) fiction that has not seen the light of day in over a hundred years and it's wonderful. On the other hand, the past definitely had its share of crap-- Varney the Vampire
is practically unreadable.
G-man, on 21 May 2015 - 02:18 PM, said:
Well, the difference is that a new limerick is a new limerick, it is not a Haiku.
Rather what we're looking at is when an old limerick has all new illustrations around it, replacing the original illustrations. Yeah, the new illustrations may be nice, but there was nothing wrong with the original illustrations.
If it ain't broke.....
As I have long maintained change = change, it may be different but not necessarily an improvement. Of course, YMMV.
Change can be good, bad, or indifferent. The point I'm trying to make is that artistry should be respected regardless of when or where it was created. Van Gogh doesn't suck because he had to use crappy poisonous paints. Bollywood doesn't suck because they use different storytelling conventions. Jules Verne doesn't suck because he was French and had no access to the Hubble Space Telescope. We don't need black-and-white movies to be colorized-- we need an audience sophisticated enough to appreciate black-and-white movies.