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Master and Margarita: "Who would let Styopa on a fighter plane without shoes?"

What happened in Master and Margarita this week? A bunch of people got disappeared by the devil (Secret Police), Apollonian and Dionysian values got compared (apparently), and there was more Jesus stuff.

AND THE MASTER SHOWED UP. Finally. Did anyone else almost immediately google to see if you could buy his hat? Because I did and I cannot find it, which seems RIDICULOUS. Anyway, I assume the woman he was obsessed with and whose flowers he hated is Margarita, and also that the Master is essentially Bulgakov (further research has supported this), which means our two main players have finally shown up. Does it feel a bit like a chess game where all the pieces are being strategically placed around? Yes? No? Maybe?

Anyway, I found this (again, from Middlebury's fine site), which I liked very much. It's addressing the chaos at the theatre in chapter 12 (bolding my own):

Apollonian vs. Dionysian: The philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche is very difficult to understand, but it appears to be quite appropriated in discussing this novel. In his work The Birth of Tragedy Nietzsche exalts the culture of ancient Greece. He revered Greek tragedy and the way that it combines myth and music. Nietzsche saw tragedy as a synthesis of what he terms the Apollonian and the Dionysian. These names are derived from the names of the Greek gods Apollo and Dionysus.

Apollo is associated with light and art in mythology. Dionysus is linked to music, drinking and revelry. By definition, the Apollonian serves to distinguish, separate and define individuals. The Dionysian breaks up all of these boundaries and creates chaos. Nietzsche writes that the Greek philosophers applied a veil of Apollonian order to civilization. According to Nietzsche this veil of reason and rationality, ascribed to the world by the great thinkers Plato and Socrates, is an illusion. The downfall of civilization is believing in this illusion of order and not realizing that it is the modern world that is a shallow illusion. It is a precarious balance between applying the veil of order and remaining aware that the veil exists. In each of these instances, Woland has removed the veil of order surrounding these Soviet citizens and allowed them to act naturally. He removes reason and rationality from the equation and gets outrageous results. It shows the wild and chaotic nature that lurks beneath the surface of a calm exterior.
MAKES YOU THINK.

Speaking of which, what do you all think? Are you liking it more? I think I am. Yes. Yes, I am. 


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