Noah denkt™ - The Power of Balanced Reasoning
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From Holly Golightly to Western ISIS fighters
Dialogue with the Alter Ego on capitalism's need to avoid emotional obligations, first drafted on June 24,
published on June 25, 2014
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Question by Alter Ego of Noah denkt™ (AE): You have indicated that you would like to discuss Truman
Capote’s 1958 novel Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Why, for God’s sake, do you want to debate a much reviewed 56
year old piece of literature when the world is still trying to get its ahead around the fact that regular Western
kids do occasionally feel inclined to join jihadist, Neo-Nazi or other extremist movements?

Answer by Noah denkt™ (Nd): Because the two things are connected. Because “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” is about
our very own need for emotional independence while
ISIS fighters take issue with just that quest for liberty.

AE: Okay, let’s talk about Holly Golightly et al first. How would Noah denkt™ summarize the novel?

Nd: Well, “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” is about two modern day individuals (Holly Golightly and the unnamed narrator
himself)
who work hard to not be tied down emotionally in order to achieve their personal goals in a fast-paced,
urbanite jungle of glamor and fun. Holly’s goal is to find a rich, exploitable husband who can afford her an
upscale life beyond income worries while the narrator himself has his eyes set on some kind of [perhaps self-
sustaining] literary success as a writer. While both of them care deeply for each other both of them ultimately
decide against pursuing a more definite link-up between the two and leave each other to their own specific toils
instead. And that despite Holly being “a lopsided romantic” (p. 56, Penguin Classics reprint, 2000). With this
ending the book differs substantially from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”- the movie which has Holly and the narrator
finally overcoming their fear of sentimental vulnerability and making the jump towards a committed personal
liaison.

AE: Would Noah denkt™, hence, say that the book is a sad one for its lack of a Happy Ending?

Nd: We would argue that it is melancholic and hopeful at the same time.  It is melancholic because of the
outcast and traumatized nature of the main protagonists who never really manage to grow out of their haunted
loneliness. But both of them appear to get by alright despite their considerable emotional handicap largely by
being able to charm their respective audience in a pretty captivating manner. And that is the hopeful part. And,
by the way, that is also the part which we, at Noah denkt™, should heed in particular. After all, it can’t be
denied that we do have important lessons to learn especially in the field of charming our audience….  

AE: Why do you say that?

Nd: Because if you are as off-centered as Noah denkt™ is you have no other choice in order to survive but to
be captivating enough for others to want to finance you. In fact, it is one of the great mysteries, isn’t it, that all
these Doc Golightlys and Ybarra-Jaegers out there continue to be fascinated by the wild ones while they
themselves are anything but wild.

AE: Come on, it’s quite natural to be fascinated by things you yourself are not. But let’s leave that thought
aside because you seem to suggest that we are not entertaining enough?

Nd: Well, yeah, don’t you think that we are too loaded, too top-heavy and not “golightly” enough in order to
enthrall our audience?

AE: May be. But is there anything we can do about that? We, obviously can’t change that ploughing, hick
background of ours…

Nd: Sure, but we could always cut out the brooding part
you tend to play in this project. That would make things
a lot more fun and less forensic, wouldn’t it?

AE: It would, but we don’t wanna do that, do we? I mean, how am I supposed to get by if I am to lose even this
platform here?

Nd: Perhaps, you too need to take you cues from Holly and learn how to avoid taking prisoners? … -  But don’t
worry, we’re not there yet either. So, instead of losing ourselves in our own trauma, let’s focus on that of others
and talk about the jihadist-Holly Golightly-dichotomy, again. We suppose that it is plain for anyone to see how
this "don’t-take-prisoners" attitude leads some younger fellas to reject the entire individualist model to begin
with?

AE: Sure. But it’s still a mistaken judgment on their part, isn’t it?

Nd: Of course, it is. After all, you can’t escape being haunted. You can only learn to make your peace with it.
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Keywords:

literary review of Breakfast at Tiffany's, analysis of Holly Golightly, how to survive
in an urban jungle, the inability to accept vulnerability, the need not to be tied
down emotionally, capitalism and the need to avoid emotional obligations