10 April 2009

The Residue of the Past, Part IV

Walter Benjamin, from Illuminations:
There is a secret agreement between past generations and the present one. Our coming was expected on earth. Like every generation that preceded us, we have been endowed with a weak Messianic power, a power to which the past has a claim. That claim cannot be settled cheaply. (254)

(Anima est vita corporis, una in toto. From Comenius' Orbis pictus (1658), snagged from here.)


John McVey said...

methinks, Miss Whitney, you've an an emblematist become. baroque liftings from Comenius and Benjamin!

Whitney said...

I know! :) There's something so simple yet lovely and bizarre about that image from Comenius..