Thursday, February 05, 2015

Two new words on a February afternoon

Today I learned two beautiful words. Vignette is a word I had a passing familiarity with but one I would never have managed to use in a sentence until today. A vignette is really snapshot or a short passage from a play or movie, or perhaps even from the events of our lives and times. I think it is most used for a snapshot or a passage that is unique or iconic in some way - perhaps a distillate of the wider work itself. I can instantly think of vignettes from my life, the ones since my daughter's birth till this time being the most meaningful for me.

The other word is solipsism. At one level, it describes as state of extreme egocentricity. In a more general, non-individualistic context though, I think it represents one of the most predominant positions of our times - the feeling that there cannot be another perspective or point of view, different from our own.

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