The Paradox of History by Nicola Chiaromonte (1970) investigates the idea of History by assessing literature (e.g. Tolstoy, Stendhal, etc.) which gave me some things to think about in terms of (and maybe apply to) my fictional people, relationships, and events. Here are a few of those things:
- Culminates in thought which is externalized through events (action).
- Defines limits and possibilities.
- Can deteriorate and die.
Inconsistency in a single belief between allied characters can initiate a parting of ways (despite all other congruencies).
Ties that Bind
Separate entities (characters, communities, etc.) are more tightly united through morals than through reason.
When it comes to following a leader/character with leadership qualities, people are drawn to:
- Those with power and success, or
- Those they believe in.
The Paradox of History
History (or any of my fictional worlds) isn’t a construction of pure fact. Instead it’s the result of facts + perception (hmm, much pondering…).
And lastly, the book proposed two conflicting ideas:
- A character’s beliefs decide his/her world.
- Events in a character’s world defines and gives significance to his/her beliefs (Chiaromonte argued for this one over the other one).
…Food for thought.
[Note: Mr. Chiaromonte suggested that an idea can only be stamped out by an event. For months, I’ve been hunting for a concept like this to satisfy a hole in one of my stories and I’VE FINALLY FOUND IT! MAHAHA!!]