“The Aura of the Story” on Red Lemonade’s Blog


“The Moment changes…. Keep eye peeled regarding situation around you.

Learn its demands. And – meet them. Be there at the right time doing the right thing.” (Dick, 155)

Can a story have an aura?

Walter Benjamin tells us that an ancient statue of Venus “stood in a different traditional context with the Greeks, who made it an object of veneration, than with the clerics of the Middle Ages, who viewed it as an ominous idol. Both of them, however, were equally confronted with its uniqueness, that is, its aura.” (Sec. IV)

The literary object we expect to exude an aura is the book. Possession of the right book allows a collector to “own” history. Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Codex Leicester. Shakespeare’s First Folio. The Gutenberg Bible. But our oldest stories first came to us orally, were held collectively. If these stories had auras, would they embrace the shape of the teller’s mouth and the timbre of her voice? Would they contain the curve of the attending ear?

Read more at Red Lemonade’s Blog