In Nox, Anne Carson’s newest work, she proposes history as elegy. This makes me speculate about images of war and violence, and how they are so often images of the aftermath. Or, a difference between yesterday and today is a modern proliferation of cameras in devices that are phones or music machines or computers, which means that the surprise moment of violence is more apt to be captured. These images are shocking, and this may be why: we are not accustomed to seeing them. Carson says, “it is when you are asking about something that you realize you yourself have survived it, and so you must carry it, or fashion it into a thing that carries itself.” Indeed, for the vast majority of us, it is the images of war that are responsible for our experience of it and we are outside of it. We have survived war. The ways we use images of war to tell the stories of it to the future must impact what they will deem (in)acceptable behaviour. I wonder what strategies are available to cloak these images with a resonance that will carry beyond the present moment?


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