Thursday, August 16, 2007

Bourne Ultimatum is Way Existential

I guess it is officially ok to use existential, not in terms of the 19th century philosophy of Camus and Sartres, but as an important sounding way to say, "pertaining to existence." While Alicia Silverstone's character in Clueless was mocked for casually dropping the term, the NPR review of Bourne Ultimatum calls the movie existential, just because it deals with Bourne's existence. I guess the ultimate arbiter of such things is William Safire who recently discussed this new casual use, especially in the context of Dick Cheney's declamation that the War on Terror is existential.

I have often been tempted, but tend to resist, not wanting to bring in connotations of alienation and absurdity, and that consciousness creates meaning and all that.

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