instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Hold that thought

First, my apologies for being so tardy with this:

Now, as an element of rhetoric irony can be defined as:
Speaking in such a way as to imply the contrary of what one says, often for the purpose of derision, mockery, or jest.
Rhetorical irony can be -- can be? shall be! -- distinguished from "situational irony," in which the contrariety isn't between word and implication, but between expectation and event.

Describing a situational irony is not in itself an act of rhetorical irony, although it could be done with irony:
Situational irony: A firehouse burns down.

Describing a situational irony without rhetorical irony: "Did you hear? The firehouse burned down!"

Describing a situational irony with rhetorical irony: "Did you hear? The firehouse burned down! No doubt they just wanted the practice."
As is often the case, this last example intends the irony to be humorous. Note, though, that you can describe a situational irony in a way intended to be humorous but without using rhetorical irony.

Okay, I think the table is set for the previous (and, God willing, the next) post.


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

A humorous thought

Irony is the humor of death. It is the laughter of the worm at work in the tomb. Having no substance of itself, it feeds off and corrupts the order formed by prior, constructive activity.

If this is so, then a country whose chief form of humor is irony is a dead country, though perhaps one whose corpse is still recognizable.

And also, irony has no place in the Kingdom of God.


Monday, March 17, 2008

Jumper jive

I... uh... golly.

Makes you wonder what we'd have learned if YouTube existed in St. Margaret of Hungary's day.

Nevertheless, yay!


Monday, March 10, 2008

A movable feast

St. Joseph's Day is, of course, March 15.

What's that, you say? It's March 19?

No, no. It's only March 19 when March 19 isn't during Holy Week.

Hmm? You say in that case, St. Joseph's Day is moved after Easter Week?

No, silly, when that's done, it gets stuck in after the Solemnity of the Annunciation, and you get a whole train of solemnities running from Easter Sunday through the following Tuesday.

So from now on, when St. Joseph's Day needs to be moved, it goes to the closest available day before Palm Sunday.

Which isn't to say that tomorrow you can't start a private novena to St. Joseph that ends on March 19. (Here's my favorite.)