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Thread: Sylvia Plath

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    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by proteanmix View Post
    Wow, do you think you can say this with any certainty? I only know one ISFJ well enough to conjecture, but I know she writes lots praise lyrics (or poetry that she turns into music) and it's not:

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    And I think writing poetry is a silly waste of time.
    If you know any ISFJs who do write good poetry or lyrics, I would love to know about it. I am simply speaking from my experience of being immersed in a religious subculture where many of the women are ISFJs... and what I described was the pattern there. I honestly have not met any in that environment who have actually been decent poets.

    And ISFPs...I'd think they'd give INFPs a serious run for their money as far is poetry is concerned.
    I think they would focus more on the sound and feel of the words themselves, or the visual images conveyed (because of the S)... the INFP is much more prone to abstractions and painting concepts/philosophical moods.

    I have seen Mozart classed as an ISFP. his music definitely had structure, but it also had lots of life and conveyed emotion coherently.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Plumage and Moult proteanmix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    If you know any ISFJs who do write good poetry or lyrics, I would love to know about it. I am simply speaking from my experience of being immersed in a religious subculture where many of the women are ISFJs... and what I described was the pattern there. I honestly have not met any in that environment who have actually been decent poets.
    Honestly, I don't know anyone (S or N) that have been "good" poets. If by good, you mean renowned, of course. I know I go to a lot of local poetry slams and I while I'm not actively typing anyone I'm assuming that a fair amount of the artists are sensors and I don't think their poetry is simpler or less intricate. Metaphor, imagery, and vivid language is just the name of the game in that culture. *shrug*

    And there's a lot of poetic value in the ability to describe a scene so vividly that you can picture yourself there without using abstractions. I'd think sensors, (esp. Se) would do this much better than an intuitive could, i.e. "imagine you're barefoot in a verdant pasture..."

    Have you met any "good" intuitive poets in this particular culture as a compare/contrast?
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    Quote Originally Posted by proteanmix View Post
    And there's a lot of poetic value in the ability to describe a scene so vividly that you can picture yourself there without using abstractions. I'd think sensors, (esp. Se) would do this much better than an intuitive could, i.e. "imagine you're barefoot in a verdant pasture..."
    I agree with you here. What i have found is that great art requires an ability to integrate an internal sense of meaning, and expressing it with keen awareness of the sensory world. Some artists use Sensing as the point of reference, but still must develop an inner representative vision, while others use iNtuition as their point of reference and learn to explore and best use the tools of the external world to communicate this. Creativity is not about isolated thinking and perceiving, but about integration of diverse elements.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
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    Senior Member raincrow007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toonia View Post

    What say ye?
    Have you considered investigating Ted Hughes' Birthday Letters, for more input on the inner workings of Sylvia?

    Just a thought.

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    Quote Originally Posted by proteanmix View Post
    Honestly, I don't know anyone (S or N) that have been "good" poets. If by good, you mean renowned, of course.
    No, I just mean "good." (I don't care if they have been fortunate enough to become famous. If they can "move" you with their words, then I would call them good.)

    I know I go to a lot of local poetry slams and I while I'm not actively typing anyone I'm assuming that a fair amount of the artists are sensors and I don't think their poetry is simpler or less intricate. Metaphor, imagery, and vivid language is just the name of the game in that culture. *shrug*
    I think the major difference would only be what I said before -- that intuitives would focus on underlying concept, the evoking of resonating concepts, where sensors focus more on the actual evoking of feelings and rhythm and sound and how the words actually play together.

    And both S's and N's do cover both areas; it is certainly not exclusive.

    All three of my children have some artistic or musical talent, as another example. The eldest is an NT and he seems to comprehend how a song fits together; he can predict what logically comes next, and "reads" very well.

    The middle child is an ESFP, and while he cannot articulate a description of the parts of the songs and how they fit together into a bigger picture, I consider him the more talented musician... if he would practice. That boy has rhythm and he "feels" the music and can bring it to life. He just sense it on a different level -- how the notes and the rhythm all play off each other. It's a very "sensual" thing to him, like kneeding clay or rolling in snow. He feels the actual sensation of the music, and I think this is powerful.

    Have you met any "good" intuitive poets in this particular culture as a compare/contrast?
    Well, the Christian worship scene has moved on from an SJ flavor (hymns full of doctrine and "intellectualized praise" music) to a very NF feel. Almost all of your major commercialized worship leaders are Ns now... and usually NFs, with a lot of SPs playing as part of the bands (because they just love the feel of being immersed in the music, and let the NF actually lead things).

    I don't see much Christian poetry outside of the verse that occurs in song lyrics (so that is what I am focusing on). Honestly, I think the mentality of conservative Christianity, with its focus on structure and the "right theology" rather than emote (because feelings are suspect) and exploration is bad for creativity. Which leads to the cookie-cutter verse I describe. (As another example, you get popular Christianized art like Precious Moments as well as Thomas Kincaide...)

    But I think I am wandering off-topic now...
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    I don't see much Christian poetry outside of the verse that occurs in song lyrics (so that is what I am focusing on). Honestly, I think the mentality of conservative Christianity, with its focus on structure and the "right theology" rather than emote (because feelings are suspect) and exploration is bad for creativity. Which leads to the cookie-cutter verse I describe. (As another example, you get popular Christianized art like Precious Moments as well as Thomas Kincaide...)(
    A friend of mine who majored in writing and has some skill married a pastor. She has shared with me the frustrations of being asked to write a poem with each line beginning with a letter of the alphabet, or some other predictable scheme that someone thought was creative. She feels very boxed in. I had a pastor's wife who expressed how sad it is that some people stray so far from the fold. Some even start painting abstract art. The narrow concept of the arts is what initially made me drift from organized religion. It feels like being in a dark little box. The blindness is profound. It made me doubt their wisdom in other areas of life when they idolized and valued such gross ignorance regarding the arts.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

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    Quote Originally Posted by toonia View Post
    She has shared with me the frustrations of being asked to write a poem with each line beginning with a letter of the alphabet, or some other predictable scheme that someone thought was creative. She feels very boxed in. ...The narrow concept of the arts is what initially made me drift from organized religion. It feels like being in a dark little box. ... It made me doubt their wisdom in other areas of life when they idolized and valued such gross ignorance regarding the arts.
    Psalms 119 (I think that is the number) is actually an acrostic of sorts, each stanza beginning with a different letter.

    I think conventions are good "forms" to pour creativity into it. Everything needs a structure. Bach was creative, even though he merely used the form of key to write a series of inventions (and when he ran out of keys, he was done).

    What bothered me more about Christian "art" was more that it wasn't really art, it actually was usually just didactic in nature -- a way of teaching the "right answers." That was always the problem: The answers are already known and you are not allowed to reach different ones, but art is about exploration and looking at things in new ways that reveal new variations/orientations of truth.

    (Now I *know* I've derailed the thread!)
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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    Here, i'll steer the horses home.

    Quote Originally Posted by raincrow007 View Post
    Have you considered investigating Ted Hughes' Birthday Letters, for more input on the inner workings of Sylvia?

    Just a thought.
    Thanks for the link. I will look at those when i get a chance. I hope others will as well.

    I have mentioned elsewhere that it is common for INFJs and ISFJs types to be confused. It would be interesting if i confused those two types in Plath's personality. One thing worth noting: all else being equal, i would suggest that in equivalently introverted S vs. N, it is the Sensor that will be a more pronounced recluse. This is because the iNtuitor can withdraw into their own mind more readily. The Sensor will withdraw in the concrete world. Just a thought that may relate to Plath or not.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    I have seen Mozart classed as an ISFP. his music definitely had structure, but it also had lots of life and conveyed emotion coherently.
    That's probably Keirseyan influence, where he takes the ISFP's nickname of Composer a bit too literally. To Keirsey, if you're an artist, then you must be an ISFP. And if you're a spiritual leader, you must be any sort of NF.

    I think Mozart was an ENFP. On historical accounts, there is no way Mozart was an Introvert.

    Most classical composers are probably N's, because classical music is very abstract.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uberfuhrer View Post
    That's probably Keirseyan influence, where he takes the ISFP's nickname of Composer a bit too literally. To Keirsey, if you're an artist, then you must be an ISFP. And if you're a spiritual leader, you must be any sort of NF.

    I think Mozart was an ENFP. On historical accounts, there is no way Mozart was an Introvert.

    Most classical composers are probably N's, because classical music is very abstract.
    A compelling case can be made for Mozart as ENTP, but that is material for another thread.

    As far as Sylvia Plath is concerned, both INFP and ISFJ look to be the forerunners in my mind at the present moment. I actually think she wasn't an INFJ, although that seems more likely than ISFP.

    I don't see much evidence for ISFP in her. She was too restricted and torn up. ISFPs as artists are really delightful, and their strength is that completely raw authenticity. They are exactly what they express, and their expression is tender, firey, nuanced, like that of a brilliant child. It's very compelling, but i would say of the four I-F-'s the most diametrically opposed to Plath's type.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
    (from Blue Velvet)

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