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Tintin and co - an unseen rebus-like writing

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rastapopoulos
Member
#31 · Posted: 11 Feb 2005 10:08 · Edited by: rastapopoulos
Yamilah, id just like to say...
1 - Is this a wind up or do you always speak like this.
2 - Id like to be able to look into the hidden meanings in Herges work, but only in plain English. It may as well be in French, i havent understood any of it.
3 - i think giving 'Land of the Soviets' as in example has tripped you up as i dont believe there could be any kind of encrption in it as his first work, and im sure being a fledgling cartoonist his mind would have been on deadlines, anxieties of the quality and style rather than putting little messages in there.

On reflection though Herge the name itself is a play on his initials, and this does show a playful cryptic mind.... help! dont know enough big words...
yamilah
Member
#32 · Posted: 14 Feb 2005 18:28 · Edited by: yamilah
Thanks Rastapopoulos for your answer.
To help you with the 'unseen' rebus-wrinting, let me just make a simple comparison: the air you breathe is certainly invisible, but still exists, and only special analysis techniques can show its reality... techniques that require a specific vocabulary and a proper teaching...
jock123
Moderator
#33 · Posted: 15 Feb 2005 00:13 · Edited by: jock123
yamilah illustrates:
the air you breathe is certainly invisible, but still exists, and only special analysis techniques can show its reality...

Well, you can perform all sorts of basic functions to show that it is there: you can see the wind blow it, repeatedly feel it enter your nose and mouth, fill your lungs, expand your chest, blow out a candle with it, blow bubbles in water with it etc. Only if you want to find out what it consists of need you perform a detailed analysis; then, you can perform a series of experiments to isolate the constituents - gas spectroscopy, for example.

Furthermore, you can describe the experiments, both basic and intensive, and another person or people could follow the experiment, and verify the result. It isn't interpretative.

What you are proposing seems to me to be more like phlostigen; early scientists thought that the presence of phlostigen explained various properties of air. However, when they tried a systematic approach, there was no way of validating the proposition, nothing that was repeatable, no methodology that a third-party could use, and they had to conceed that it didn't exist (the discovery of oxygen eliminated the "existence" of phlostigen).

Nothing you have said has yet demonstrated the initial proposition that there are messages or a rebus or a special grid encoded into the works of Hergé. The single example you have put forward from Soviets (and that only after prolonged requesting by the forum), is even by your own admission tenuous at best, and non-existent/ accidental at worst. It is wholly interpretative, does not constitute a message, and is not indicative of a system that is repeatable (or decipherable) by a third-party.

You also still disregard direct questions when placed before you, and never give a definitive answer: this is frustrating, especially when you make assumptions about those who do not automatically accept what you say as lacking an open mind.

You have not indicated, even without specifics:
· what sort of message Hergé would wish to impart in such an improbable way? Is it philosophical, theological, geographical...?
· why would it have to be hidden?
· what possible knowledge could Hergé have picked up, growing up in suburban Brussels between the wars, pretty much under the thumb of his family and the Church, not travelling anywhere, that could have any impact on us as readers of his work?
· why it is significant? I mean if he is telling us how to find the Ark of the Covenant, it's a different matter than if he has embedded the lyrics to Anything Goes, which would be clever but utterly pointless.

What physical evidence is there is that such a message exists? We know that Hergé threw away virtually nothing, annotated the margins of his pages and sketches/scripts he wrote, consulted his studio staff and outside experts. Bernard Tordeur of the Fondation has said that there is textual evidence in the correspondence archive for every significant modification Hergé ever made in a strip - yet he failed to say anything about evidence of encoding, or cryptography having played any part in Hergé's development process. That seems highly unlikely, if not virtually impossible.

Until you can present a case which demonstrates that virtually everything we know about Hergé factually has to be overthrown, then I am not sure how the discussion can progress.
Harrock n roll
Moderator
#34 · Posted: 15 Feb 2005 01:43
Interesting stuff about phlostigen jock, proves there is still something to be learnt, even in the most unlikely thread...

what possible knowledge could Hergé have picked up, growing up in suburban Brussels between the wars, pretty much under the thumb of his family and the Church, not travelling anywhere, that could have any impact on us as readers of his work?

Rebus-like writing aside I think this is a good question in the broader context of the nature of Hergé's “genius” and where it came from. In fact I might take it with me to another thread...
yamilah
Member
#35 · Posted: 15 Feb 2005 22:49 · Edited by: yamilah
Thanks for your relevant information about phlostigen, which was not too bad an empirical attempt towards oxygen discovery after all. Empiricism is precisely the unique rule in our subject: don't have any prejudice, forget the apriorisms about Tintin, read the books about Herge's life, watch his interviews...
If you really want to know some more about the H. code, I can only advise you to start and read again what Y. wrote elsewhere, and not bother about the human comments made about it...

My very 1st post on that forum was about Amanda's 'sympathetic' & 'rebus-like writing' orientated paper in the 'preposterous' thread, where I asked "is there anyone aboard interested not just in human science and classified secrecy, but mainly in cryptosystems incrusted in art". If by any chance such a person does exist, he/she has to know that only empiricism can do, or a private meeting, for many good reasons, among others:

- the 'word data' don't always appear in translations, as already shown by the 'sympathetic' dog...
- all the books must be at hand...
- the whole system is childish, so it's just a matter to be laughed at by Philistines, and after that it becomes so odd and intricate that of course they'll find it stupid, such as the question 'what system can be infered from the many hundreds of orthographic mistakes'?
- people aren't taught that way at University, nor are prepared to study 'losing their time' for such a 'nonsense junk', unless maybe someone is at hand to give readily all the required technical explanations...
- H. code understanding has to be made sure in an interactive way after every single syllable, be it coded or not, before going to the next... somehow humiliating for the proud people...
- it's a headache to hear about this kind of stuff, whereas it's amazing to see the Tintinverse 'construit' (as Goddin says in 'Tintin as a myth') as a whole from it -because H. code is understandable as a whole only; but no need of it to love Tintin & Herge...
- H. code is still unpublished and will probably remain so for a very long time, if not forever...
- quite a few years' fun study spent on that peculiar matter can't just be thrown to people's head over the counter...
- this most complex literate code (i.e. oulipian code, with its own internal rules) cannot be taught from afar nor be understood off-road in a self-guided tour, even by literate people, except if they prefer try the empirical way, of course...

Such is H. code and such are the conditions to understand it: either empiricism, or an interactive discussion.
Someone aboard still really interested ??
jock123
Moderator
#36 · Posted: 15 Feb 2005 23:54 · Edited by: jock123
Phlostigen was a terrible empirical attempt to construct a universal elemental science based on the outmoded (and frankly wrong) notions of earth, air, fire and water - I merely addressed my remarks to air, as that was your analogy. Phlostigen was thought to be a single substance involved in all chemical reactions - but it wasn't.

However, it was based on the evidence available at the time, and seemed credible.

With respect, your theory does not seem to be credible with the evidence to hand. You avoid straight answers of any sort. You fail to provide anything to back up what you say. You cannot even describe in simple declaritive sentences what exactly you mean by "code", "message" etc. If you cannot clearly state your terms, what are we to do?

In all sincerity, you must see that this leaves so much doubt around what you are saying that any reasonable person has to be sceptical. It really is down to you to prove that it isn't "nonsense junk", as you put it.

Anybody can make a proposition ("I have a mouse in my pocket who plays the glockenspiel and sings Bach chorales"), but they should be able to back it up (which, sadly, I can't, in the case of the musical mouse, no matter how appealing the image of it is).

I can't imagine that you are going to go out of your way to find out about my mouse, because there isn't any credible evidence for you to go on. Nor, to be fair, would, or could, I expect you to.

So until you make a compelling case for your theory, you are hardly likely to elicit support.

Suggesting that it is only because "Philistines" don't want to waste time that we are struggling to understand whatever you are trying to say, seems to be a desperate case of self-justification.

So, please, could you go back to my previous post, and offer answers to the simple questions I asked. Or, should that prove difficult, why not offer, in simple, regular vocabulary, a precis of what your proposition actually is (e.g. "I believe that Hergé, channeling the spirit of an ancient Atlantean mage, provides a message offering the location of the island of Mú"). Anything concrete...
yamilah
Member
#37 · Posted: 16 Feb 2005 16:42 · Edited by: yamilah
Jock123, you're asking for proofs that just can't be given publicly, as they all are directly related to the syllables (please refer to the 'supernomenclator' defined above) of the well-known secret Herge told about ('my childhood has been terrible' and 'mediocre', in Sadoul's 'Tintin et moi'), but drew -probably therapeutically- in his unrecognized art via his unseen 'rebus-like writing': a forum is no place for discussing the testimony of a 'child abuse' that touches one but unfortunately infringes forum rule #5 and other well known ethical rules that hinder any public divulgation, all the better for Tintin and for those who have the right to keep their 'politically correct' ideas about children and literature.

As anyone can now see from the provoked tintinophiliac reactions, and easily guess by using some 'thought transmission', such a subject has nothing to see with and nothing to show to the visible Tintin universe: I just escaped 'another world of science' for a while in order to react about your confounding criticism about Amanda Macdonald's 'most preposterous scholarship' paper on the 'humanesque'(*), but not to give here any proof of what she and Herge so strongly hinted, respectively in her conclusion(**) and in the words he chose to tell us about his childhood(***).
That's all folks...
And thank you for the most interesting threads found on this site!

(*) 'humanesque' translates rather well the French 'avatars' announced in 'Soviets' 1st frame, as well as Amanda's most repeated 'image-word' metaphor for 'rebus'.

(**) "As to whether the treatise on the humanesque deducible from this art has anything to say about the human, in the way that Serres seems so passionately to want Herge's corpus to do, well that is quite another ...matter."

(***) "terrible", "mediocre".
jock123
Moderator
#38 · Posted: 16 Feb 2005 17:28
yamilah:
Jock123, you're asking for proofs that just can't be given publicly

Actually I would have been happy if you could have described your position theoretically in simple terms which everyone (or even anyone) on here had a chance to understand - proof could have come later...

the syllables of the well-known secret Herge told

Now you see that’s the kind of meaningless double-talk that made the “preposterous” scholarship preposterous: frankly it means nothing because it is an obvious contradiction in terms: something which is told and is well-known ceases to be a secret... It is either something which Hergé said, and it is well known, or it is a secret. Not both, surely?

infringes forum rule #5 and other well known ethical rules that hinder any public divulgation

Perhaps in future you might consider not trying to discuss things in public which you then tell us you can’t discuss in public?

such a subject has nothing to see with and nothing to show to the visible Tintin universe

So again, I put it to you, why discuss the subject in a public forum? Actually, your phrase puts me in mind of The Emperor’s New Clothes, by Hans Christian Andersen - such a subject, which can’t be described, discussed or seen, apart from those whom you think to clever enough, may not in fact be there! (“Look at the king!”)

but not to give here any proof of what she and Herge so strongly hinted.

I’d be interested to know if Ms McDonald had ever even considered your interpretation of her work, as you seem to lay a lot of value on investing things with multiple meanings. As to her and Hergé making strong hints, well I haven’t the vaugest idea of what you mean...

Ah well, I tried my best. Good luck to you, and have fun with your theory, whatever it is.

I now go to put my brain in a bucket of cold water...
jockosjungle
Member
#39 · Posted: 16 Feb 2005 20:52
Sorry none of this makes any sense at all to me, any chance of 'An Idiots Guide to the Unseen Rebus' or at least something that makes sense.

Yamilah - you wouldn't actually be Amanda Mcdonald would you? You only joined us recently (after the first thread by Jock123) and have seen to make it your mission to defend what she wrote

Rik
yamilah
Member
#40 · Posted: 21 Feb 2005 20:02 · Edited by: yamilah
Thanks for your answers.
Jockosjungle, let me just repeat:
1. that I don't even know Prof Amanda Macdonald PhD (please refer to a previous thread named 'Most preposterous piece of Tintin "scholarship" ever').
2. that despite her most interesting and sensible article she actually seems to have missed Herge's 'unseen rebus-like writing' just because of her prejudice -a common problem with Tintin's exegetes, imho- when she decides arbitrarily that 'the image line preceeds the word line', thus precluding any rebus-like writing, whereas Herge clearly said "text and drawing are born simultaneously, each implementing and explaining the other" (quoted in her p.1), thus evoking a parallel writing system, i.e. the 'unseen rebus-like writing' she alludes to throughout her 12 pages without ever naming it...

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