From: Ken Armstrong [mailto:[log in to unmask]] There is a basic problem here, which may sound trivial, but is not. That being that there is no tape of life, literal or figurative. The problem for Gould and co. is that their assumptions start with "what if" and not with "what is." They don't like what is (they don't like what it points to), so they like to pretend it could be something else... Start with "what if" and you can say anything, as Gould does; start, as Eliot did, with what is, and stay with it, as Eliot did (and as very few do), and you are constrained to reach some thing finer, of lasting value. =============================================================== Which is probably why we seldom manage to truck our way all the way through TWL on this list (or in academia for all that that matters), let alone to get to the work beyond it. Heaven forbid that we should talk of heaven on this list. Even in nice safe pieces like "The Hollow Men", the multifoliate rose tends to make people cough and wheeze. Cheers, Peter.