The Instigator
Ghosty
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
NiqashMotawadi3
Con (against)
Winning
7 Points

Is simplicity in literature overrated?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
NiqashMotawadi3
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/19/2013 Category: Arts
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,731 times Debate No: 34920
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (0)
Votes (2)

 

Ghosty

Pro

"Art is not difficult because it wishes to be difficult, rather because it wishes to be art. However much the writer might long to be, in his work, simple, honest, straightforward, these virtues are no longer available to him. He discovers that in being simple, honest, straightforward, nothing much happens... We are looking for the as yet unspeakable, the as yet unspoken." -Donald Barthelme

The quote above illustrates my stance on the topic. Please, if you accept this debate, explain why you disagree with this idea.

Definitions

simplicity- freedom from complexity, intricacy, or division into parts

literature- writings in which expression and form, in connection with ideas of permanent and universal interest, are characteristic or essential features. (Poetry, novels, biographies, and essays)

overrated- to asses too highly

Donald Barthelme- American author; one of the original founders of the University of Houston Creative Writing Program
NiqashMotawadi3

Con

I thank my friend Ghosty for this wonderful topic. I'm really looking forward for this debate.

"To be or not to be." The name of the great writer who wrote that doesn't need to be written down. What needs to be is the simplicity and beauty of this statement, which inhibits the memories of all those who read Hamlet, as opposed to all the other complex phrases in there which we have forgotten. It goes without saying that I disagree with Donald Barthelme on saying "in being simple, honest, straightforward, nothing much happens."

I noticed that my friend Ghosty is a fan of Edgar Allen Poe. So let us use this as a common ground to set a less technical, and yet more profound and meaningful definition of Art. As Poe says, "Were I called on to define, very briefly, the term Art, I should call it 'the reproduction of what the Senses perceive in Nature through the veil of the soul...'" This definition is simple and yet utterly profound. Simplicity is an important factor in measuring how sensual perceptions are portrayed in a manner that doesn't disrupt perception, but solely magnifies beauty and meaning. As Marcus Tullius Cicero says, "Brevity is a great charm of eloquence." Needless to say, without simplicity a great charm is lost.

Put more bluntly, my position is that literature is ruined by impostors who muddy the waters instead of offering clear precepts. I'm a big fan of Charles Bukowski, who uses simple phrases to convey meanings deeper than the deepest oceans. Literature which is not simple is pretentious as it confuses in order to impress. A comparison between bad and good literature is like a comparison between a pseudo-intellectual and an intellectual.

As a final thought, complicating matters is currently ruining literature. I remember seeing many passages in the Bad Writing Contest which could be regarded as eye-openers. For example, 'Punctuated by what became ubiquitous sound bites " Tonya dashing after the tow truck, Nancy sailing the ice with one leg reaching for heaven " this melodrama parsed the transgressive hybridity of un-narrativized representative bodies back into recognizable heterovisual codes.' [Robyn Wiegman and Linda Zwinger, in "Tonya"s Bad Boot," an essay in Women on Ice, edited by Cynthia Baughman (Routledge, 1995)]

The above passage proves that Barthelme is wrong when he states that "Art is not difficult because it wishes to be difficult, rather because it wishes to be art." Art is mostly art because it is meaningful and straightforward, not forgetting that some artists intentionally complicate their works to muddy the waters and give an allure of deepness. This is fraudulence, not art.

In conclusion, simplicity is actually underrated and I shall be defending this more in the next rounds.
Debate Round No. 1
Ghosty

Pro

Ghosty forfeited this round.
NiqashMotawadi3

Con

I didn't see this coming. Anyway, I'm ready to debate my opponent if she returns in the next round. This is a wonderful debate which she started. I don't see why she forfeited directly in round 2.
Debate Round No. 2
Ghosty

Pro

Ghosty forfeited this round.
NiqashMotawadi3

Con

This was supposed to be a wonderful debate. I apologize for my opponent's forfeits and to all the readers who had high expectations for this debate.
Debate Round No. 3
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by drafterman 3 years ago
drafterman
GhostyNiqashMotawadi3Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: FF
Vote Placed by Subutai 3 years ago
Subutai
GhostyNiqashMotawadi3Tied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: FF.