Saturday, May 3, 2008

Today's Turn of Phrase: "Castro Shrugged"

I ran across an issue of Reason with a brief article which included the infamous picture with the Greenspan book. Brian Doherty's take on that moment goes beyond the "proof of life" interpretation many of us gave it. He maintains that it was a rare moment of honesty when Castro admitted he didn't get it (Greenspan's book). I don't necessarily agree, and it is a given that I don't agree with his conclusion. Still it's thought-provoking, because once in a while, the veil does seem to lift in one of his ramblings, and for a moment, the veriest hint of self-examination possibly comes through.

But it's the title which seized my fancy. Take a look at the allusion to the Ayn Rand novel, Atlas Shrugged, the same Ayn Rand who extolled the very philosophy incomprehensible to Fidel. Elegant. Then there is the allusion to Atlas, the Titan who held up the world in Greek mythology. Again apropos to Castro, who has always seen himself as a titan, a giant among men. If you'll pardon another literary allusion, in my mind the word hearkens to that description of Julius Ceasar- he doth bestride the narrow world Like a Colossus. Finally, there is the notion of shrugging, which here seems to be equivalent to Castro "blinks," thereby resonating with the rare admission of fallibility. How very neat.

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