June 26, 2009

Less is More

The ancient Romans knew well the value of restraint upon the expression of man.

The literary canons under which Roman authors published were rigidly imposed, demanding exact use of rhythm and meter when delivering their message. If you can imagine trying to write an service manual for a German car using only Haiku and half the alphabet, then you're half way there. Not only was there a requirement for words to flow with song, but the Latin language itself was poorly equipped for words to convey sentiment of romance and love.

Poetic figures such as Catullus and Ovid managed to express themselves however, and perhaps their classic works were forged in part from those very constraints that countered free expression.

If so then the internet is heralding a very dire future for us all.

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