“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."
Friday, June 19, 2009
The Pathos of the Mundane
Tragedy and pathos walk the same path; it leads to pity, but it takes the mundane objects of daily living to enhance the tragedy of a loss. We all experience the soft sorrow and sentiment of the little silly things you cannot bear to discard after the loss of a loved one. They remind us of the soft pleasures of the more mundane parts of a life. That is part of the power of this photo. It makes the tragedy personal. It somehow draws us into the terrible ending of that broken flight.
Enlightenment can be the compensation for sorrow and loss. A broken galley floating in the sea personalizes the terror of those lost and their terrible last moments.