I'm going to make notes as I read the book although it may only be a little at a time.
I read a bit about the book before I bought it and what I understood was that George Steiner was arguing that all works of art manifested the presence of God - real presences.
Hmm that's interesting, and even more so at the moment when thae scientific community are holding entire conferences to see if they should admit the presence of god into scientific thinking. One of the arguments put forward in favour was that human beings seem to be hardwired to incorporate a belief in moral values and that these determine much of our behaviour. Such moral values are not logical but yet they are there. (See New Scientist 11 Nov, 2007 Does God have a place in a rational world http://www.newscientist.com/channel/opinion/mg19626294.200-does-god-have-a-place-in-a-rational-world.html )
I look inside the book and see there are three parts:
1. A Secondary City,
2. The Broken Contract,
I wonder what these mean.
'... the wager on the meaning of meaning, on the potential of insight and response when one human voice addresses another, when we come face to face with the text, or work of art, or music, which is to say when we encounter the other in its condition of freedom, is a wager on transcendence.' (Steiner 1991:4)
Just think the music, the pictures, the poems are 'the other in a condition of freedom' - what a wonderful thought, and yes, of course.
Dai, how are you getting on with your work for the Exhibition? Hope it's going well, no need to respond now.