Tragic Symbolism

The Notre Dame cathedral has burned down! What an absolute tragedy.

I spent the whole day analyzing poetry, so I feel justified in pointing out the symbolism of one of the central images of European Christianity being destroyed in the aftermath of Christianity dying in Europe. (There is a million links on what’s happening with cathedrals in France. Please look them up before contradicting).

The newscaster is crying on TV and can’t finish the segment. I don’t blame her. I’d blame her if she didn’t because people who aren’t hurt by this are not really alive.


18 thoughts on “Tragic Symbolism”

  1. Reply to Tragic Symbolism

    Based upon my personal experience with Christianity, I am very happy to have witnessed the collapse of Christianity in Europe. Paradoxically, I am sad about the tragic burning of Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris. A friend of mine who is a mediævalist says that it has burned before, and much of it is not original.


    1. I once had a really bad camping trip, so I’m very excited about the planet dying as a result of global warming. Finally, none of those nasty mosquitoes and annoying frogs!


      1. I once had a really bad camping trip…

        This does not make sense to me. A more meaningful analogy would be, e. g., “I am glad that Bubonic Plague is not the threat to humans that it was centuries ago. so…”


        1. Let’s not argue about analogies with a literature professor. 🙂

          You quoted a bad personal experience, and so did I. Neither of us has experience with bubonic plague, so this can’t possibly be a meaningful analogy to what you said.


  2. Reply to Tragic Symbolism:

    Based on my own experience with Christianity, I am happy to have witnessed the collapse of Christianity in Europe. Perhaps paradoxically, I agree that the burning of Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris is a tragedy. A friend of mine who is a mediævalist says it has burned numerous times before, and much of the original artwork is gone.

    Again, my apologies for not remembering to put in my personal info when I posted a prior version of this. It is now necessary do redo this with each new comment post.


  3. I’m glad nobody died, and I’m glad most of the artwork/statues/etc had been taken out a few days before, and that we have the cathedral laser mapped to the milimeter, so if we veer from what was previously there when rebuilding, it’ll be intentional . I am not worried about it not being rebuilt, as much as I can’t take the horrifying image of the collapsing spire out of my head.


  4. I’m evil. Cathedrals burn and this can be rebuilt, as Stille said. In a practical sense was much more disturbed by the recent burning of the Brazilian national library since much went that cannot be recreated.


    1. I was too – the Brazil fire destroyed countless irreplaceable historical artifacts. However, I’ve never even been in the same hemisphere as Brazil, so then, I mourned for humanity – here I find myself trying to remember if I ever saw it on a clear dusk such as this (I haven’t). I can’t remember the inside – I can remember the rose window, so I definitely was inside, but not anything else.

      The French firefighters just said the structure is safe, which is very good news – the renovations were supposed to fix structural damage.


    2. I think you guys are just trying to be cool and contrarian. It’s not possible for a Western person of even a minimal culture not to be wounded by these images.


      1. I am wounded. I am also trying to stay cool (not contrarian though). It’s a different issue altogether but I am very frightened for my country these days, and the way this bleeds through in my behaviour in times like these is by focusing on how harm can be mitigated. I can grieve but I don’t have the resources in me to indulge in a sense of doom. I feel I wouldn’t get out of bed anymore if I did.


      2. I know it is supposed to be more important to me than other places, but honestly I don’t have the visceral connection to this cathedral some people seem to have. I felt more wounded personally by the destruction wrought at Joshua Tree during Trumpy’s government shutdown, and it’s a fact. Not that I do not understand this was an important artifact that a lot of people seem to have a major personal connection to, I do; I just seem to have been more upset at the loss of some different artifacts.


  5. It’s the modern-day developers working alongside underground operatives.
    Covertly, they’re clearing out space to build a myriad of multi-story condominiums and shopping centers.
    Gentrification!! To hell with long-standing historical structures and whatever legacies they may convey!! These are modern times, calling for a revamp of civilization—including the physical and structural rebuilding of our cities and towns!!
    Once destroyed a private financial outfit will buy up the property from the French government, then put it on hold for the highest bidder.
    Once again, the “mercenary-minded” win.


  6. This is awful. Just to see an ancient beautiful piece of architecture with such history behind it wrecked like that; it’s such a waste. I’ve been out all day, and unable to check the news. This is incredibly sad.


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