Eternalize / Kitsch

Eternalize - Kitsch

What drives us to attempt to eternalize moments? We are mortals after all. Maybe, we are driven by the same instincts that impelled the Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt to erect pyramids as a gateway to eternity. After all, they did succeed. Many millennium later, not only are they remembered, they are also the subject of the most popular shows on the Discovery Channel. Why did King Tutankhamun die so young? Was he killed, or did he die of natural causes?

Maybe we do not have such grand ambitions. Maybe, we only want document our lives so that we remember the moments we cherish when we are older; Maybe we want to share those moments with our families, our friends. (Did you ever enjoy sitting through your friends wedding ceremony video?) Or, maybe we just want to decorate our walls with some photographs.

The great debates of our time are, faith versus rationality, emotion versus reason. Eternity has a slightly different meaning for each of us. Some of us attempt to eternalize moments to simplify our emotional complexity; a form of sentimentality. Others regard eternalization as a kitsch...

Kitsch is a somewhat vaguely defined word. The most thought provoking definition of kitsch is by Czech writer Milan Kundera. In his book The Unbearable Lightness of Being, he defined it as "the absolute denial of shit". He wrote that kitsch functions by excluding from view everything that humans find difficult with which to come to terms, offering instead a sanitized view of the world, in which "all answers are given in advance and preclude any questions". *

Song of the Day: Hallowed Be Thy Name - Iron Maiden (1982)
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