Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Words Inspire Action
This past Friday I had the opportunity to attend a performance of Beaumarchais’s The Marriage of Figaro, in the U street section of D.C. Besides being a play of considerable wit and physical comedy which took the edge off of a long week, it is also cited to have aided inspiring the French Revolution. Watching some of the subtle cues that spurred for independence of underlings and listening to equally caustic lines that spurned the hierarchy, I certainly grasped the revolutionary themes of the play. What was harder to understand is how a play could really move people to such dramatic (irony intended) action.
As I reflect, staring at my computer and browsing from news pieces to blogs to social networking, I have a minor revelation that has occurred to me before in various forms. Part of the reason that words no longer seem to carry as much import is that we are inundated with so many of them. Surveys (for what they’re worth) show that people barely read short blog posts through any more- merely skim. So while the information age seems to be progress, it also dulls our senses and our motivation (ref: Wall-E). While you may not agree with the French Revolution, you may at least join me in desiring that the sleek, yet powerful, weapon of words might again inspire man to action.