A Novelist's Conception of Beauty

Dovey: I can answer that quite honestly with the farming. It’s processes. It’s . . . I think that’s why I was always attracted to farming as a film subject. I made a lot of films about farming in Vermont and all sorts of places because there was this sense of tracking a process – like a physical aesthetic process. And something incredibly satisfying about seeing that. So where there’s, you know, digging carrots out the ground and knocking them on the side of a bucket to get the ___________ you know, submerging them in water. Or you know the milking of cows. Or you know the kids on the farm used to thread wine bottle lids onto a string and then try . . . sort of tie them around ____________ and do ____________ dancing with a sort of rattle on their boots. And I was just always attracted to those sorts of images – that kind of specific minute detail of people’s ___________. But also linked to a natural process in the sense of the light, you know; of being outdoors and filming in these places where, you know, there is just this sense of being human that I think we are quite alienated from having always lived in cities. And I think I was sort of fascinated by that kind of rural sensibility. I probably have romanticized it but . . . And I suppose actually in the writing it’s a similar thing. In the book you know, a lot of the pleasure I got was describing, again, these sort of minute processes; and these three men who have these very hands on relationships with the president. And so the kind of processes of clipping his hair and, you know, spraying it first, and putting the towel around the neck; or the intricate details of, you know, making his meals. And so I suppose it’s a kind of interest in that. I do think it’s a quite ___________ book. And I really admire writers who can kind of face beauty head on. Because I think it’s much, much harder to write beauty well than it is to write, you know, kind of depressing ugliness well. And so I do hope it’s something I can learn to do without ever, you know, falling into the trap of being sentimental. I suppose that’s always the problem with any . . . approaching beauty. Recorded on: 12/6/07

In her filmmaking, Dovey was drawn to the beauty of farming because of the process.

The 10 most influential women in tech right now

These thought leaders, founders, and entrepreneurs are propelling the kind of future we want to be a part of.

Credit: Flickr, The Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch
Technology & Innovation
  • The tech industry may be dominated by men in terms of numbers, but there are lots of brilliant women in leadership positions that are changing the landscape.
  • The women on this list are founders of companies dedicated to teaching girls to code, innovators in the fields of AI, VR, and machine learning, leading tech writers and podcasters, and CEOs of companies like YouTube and Project Include.
  • This list is by no means all-encompassing. There are many more influential women in tech that you should seek out and follow.

Keep reading Show less

In quantum entanglement first, scientists link distant large objects

Physicists create quantum entanglement, making two distant objects behave as one.

Credit: Niels Bohr Institute
Surprising Science
  • Researchers accomplished quantum entanglement between a mechanical oscillator and a cloud of atoms.
  • The feat promises application in quantum communication and quantum sensors.
  • Quantum entanglement involves linking two objects, making them behave as one at a distance.
  • Keep reading Show less

    90,000-year-old human hybrid found in ancient cave

    Researchers have just discovered the remains of a hybrid human.

    Researchers in a chamber of the Denisova cave in Siberia, where the fossil of a Denisova 11 was discovered. CreditIAET SB RAS, Sergei Zelensky
    Surprising Science

    90,000 years ago, a young girl lived in a cave in the Altai mountains in southern Siberia. Her life was short; she died in her early teens, but she stands at a unique point in human evolution. She is the first known hybrid of two different kinds of ancient humans: the Neanderthals and the Denisovans.

    Keep reading Show less

    Ambassadors from 50 nations sign letter supporting LGBTQ rights in Poland

    Poland has become an increasingly unwelcoming place for the LGBTQ community. 50 diplomats hope to change that.

    Credit: Sentemon/Shutterstock
    Politics & Current Affairs
    • An open letter, signed by 50 ambassadors and NGO leaders, asked the Polish government to respect LGBT rights.
    • The Polish Government responded by denying the implied discrimination exists.
    • Poland has been deemed the "worst place to be gay" in the EU in spite of this.
    Keep reading Show less
    Quantcast