When do you stop being a baby? And start being an infant?
P.47-48: LANGUAGE is the moment when he comes an infant --> grasping at words, learning to watch, remember, speak; system
of signs, becomes a REMEBERING self
Modern psychology: idea that ourselves are created through language--> not just spoken language, but any system of signs that
indicate what you want to another person; any form of communication
Is there a line, day, when suddenly when you're not an infant anymore? -->"Infancy did not depart" not like when you wake up
one day you're changed--> "hazy, murky borderline"
infancy? Yet infancy did not depart, so what happened to it?_
How he came to be? Who he came to be?
Could I have made me who I am? --> "God fashioned you" = orthodox, accepted belief
Then: got changes in our thinking but not in our answers e.g. God replaced with science --> Stephen Pinker "My Genome, Myself"
"Are any of us skilful enough to fashion ourselves?"
"Gifts": divine sense, what God has given him
Acknowledge that you are something you didn't do, a collection of actions, incidents from elsewhere
E.g. Socioeconomic status: where you are born has a lot to do with what your "gifts" are; what you have in your life, don't have in
your life -->rates of divorce, alcoholism, etc, givento you
Importance: we can ask the exact same questions today --> 100% pertinent, even though he wrote it a long time ago
Editor: put this chronology together
Writer of Revisions II, to 13 books of confessions
"As far as I am concerned, they had this effect upon me in my writing of them, and still do when I read them now."
Expectation of change: in between writing and editing, he's changed --> thinks differently
Got the impression of the older Bishop of Hippo looking back on his life
Botticelli's paintings of St. Augustine:
[Editor Augustine] 1st one older, 2nd one more movement
[Narrator Augustine] 1st one editor, BUT 2nd one, writer not completely static, secure (still in the moment, thinking, asking questions),
the guy writing the confessions at the age of 43
[Protagonist Augustine] 3rd guy: younger, fooling around, general "hell-raiser"
Narrator Augustine and Protagonist Augustine: two diff people
The Bishop Augustine is even more removed from the child Augustine in the narrative --> little connection between the child and the
Children and sin? --> he asks what is the state of sin in children?
Even further away from what he remembers and what he cannot access --> Children and memories: blank memories?
Augustine before his conversion: bad to good
Progtagonist composite of decades of diff people that don't necessarily have clear connections:
Baby to infant child: Augustine don't even know when this happened
Child to Collin Farrel: what he's trying to trace
Collin Farrell to Tom Hanks: conversion, tumbling & fall, death at conversion, new self was born
Period covered for protagonist (whole series of "I"s):
Written age 43; editing happened at 75 at some point; 0-32 period covered for protagonist --> the gap between written and editing:
longer than the entire span of his protagonist's life!
What are all the composite I's between writing and revision, in between writing and editing, during these 33 years?
Do you actually stop changing as a person? Reach maturity and you're done?
Late 4th century: Augustine, The Confessions
[The Dark Ages] --> 14 hundred years
Late 18th century: Rousseau, Confessions
Between fall of Rome and Renaissance (scholarship dropped off in Europe: writing itself fallen off): stories weren't written/persevered
14th century: Renaissance art & perspective drawing (flat medieval to vanishing points, geometry perspective: idea of positioning
yourself in perspective, seeing yourself in relation to other things) --> formation of our sense of autobio
Late 16th c: Michel de Montaigne: "Essays" (more personal essays, one of the first Western autobiographers)
Early 17th C.: Decartes: "Cogito ergo sum" -->spark in thinking about who we are--> what is a "subject", definition
Late 17th C: John Locke: "Tabula rasa"
Born out of a clean slate
Consciousness like a thread and ourselves like a beaded necklace, each bead a conscious experience --> what happens when you lose
What held experiences together when asleep? Consciousness not present --> "enlightenment": a lot of thinking
18th C: Didactive, instructive, cautionary tales
Late 18th C: Rousseau: "Confessions", full expressed autobio in Western world
19th C: 1. "Great men" (less cautionary tale)-->Progress, industry, "read this so you can be like me"
19th C: 2. Romantic celebration of self/soul --> Victorian ("Self as soul")
19th C: 3. The invention of childhood
Acknowledge that kids can think
Previously: kids not people until "rational": 7-10 years old
Now : kids are also people, get Charles Dickenswho deliberately write about kids--> what made them the adult they are today?