I am in the midst of experiencing Enrique Enriquez book “Tarotology” – his view of the “Tarot de Marseille” through the lens of pataphysics (the science of imaginary solutions). Yes, this is a book that you experience, rather than read. It’s more fun that way … and, quite frankly, I immediately got lost when trying to be a big girl and to logically understand what was going on. I will not, at this point in time (and more than likely I will never) review this book. I don’t have the depth of understanding to do that. I will talk about what I see, and what I am experiencing.
It was entirely freeing to acknowledge that I had no clue what was going on, and to just be a “bystander with privileges” – I could laugh at what I understood, and be simply fascinated by the rest. I will experience this book many times over my lifetime, I am sure. I reread all of my books – and either find something new, or simply enjoy the read anew each time.
In her comments on this book, Camelia Elias (Professor of American Studies and Tarot de Marseille Reader) notes that in going from pataphysics to poetry and back again, Enriquez performs the Tarot in a way that is free of cultural preconditioning to the workings of myth and symbol. She goes on to note that Enriquez also proposes the following rules: “watch and learn”, keep it simple”, “stay on track”, “be surprised”, “be fearless”, and “let the image talk the walk”.
Enriquez, as anyone who has encountered him or any of his work knows, is a totally unique individual. I encountered him at the RS 2011, when he was filming the proceedings. He did his work so well that you never really knew he was there – but he
was! My regret is that I did not have the courage to introduce myself to him. Talk about lost opportunities!
I am about half-way through the book. What have I experienced so far? Tarology defined (the definition is transitory – it only holds true for the time it takes you to read it), the concept that the tarologist fees are variable, depending on the nature of the question. (It is suggested that the tarologist charge twice the amount for an unimaginative question than they charge for an imaginative one. I concur.) Letters are carriers of movement, pataphysics is the “science of exceptions”.
From page 66: “The French language allows for an exceptional playfulness that has turned the Marseille tarot tradition into a unique house of mirrors.”
The last page in this book is Enriquez’ biography. When I get the funds together, I am going to see if I can’t get him to “ghost” my bio!
There is more … I will write about it later. Get the book … it’s worth it!
© March 2012 Bonnie Cehovet
March 5, 2012 at 12:58 am
I absolutely love this line, “…and, quite frankly, I immediately got lost when trying to be a big girl and to logically understand what was going on.” It made me giggle, because I would probably sit and drive myself nuts trying to understand it. And I re-read all my books, too. Right now I’ve just grabbed The Love Letter by Cathleen Schine because the writing in it makes my soul sing. 🙂
March 5, 2012 at 1:00 am
That was a very true line! 😉 I would be lost without my books!
March 5, 2012 at 1:11 am
Now this is a treat to all my senses – one of my favorite authors writing about another favorite! I also think Enrique is genius and, right, it takes another of a kind to present his work! Thank you for this, Bonnie!
March 5, 2012 at 1:15 am
Enrique is definitely genius level! Glad that you enjoyed what I wrote. 🙂
March 12, 2012 at 8:34 am
How true! You CAN enjoy a book and not understand it all – I often just enjoy the language and alight on a great turn of phrase.
…and the next time you see him, you must introduce yourself to him!
March 12, 2012 at 3:55 pm
I am a little over half-way done with Enrique’s book, and still loving it! I will indeed introduce myself to him the next timeI see him! 🙂