“Authenticity” still remains the word most likely to stir a debate

reading House of Leaves

Image has forsaken its once unimpeachable hold on the truth

While enthusiasts will continue to empty entire dictionaries attempting to describe or deride it, “authenticity” still remains the word most likely to stir a debate. In fact, this leading obsession – to validate or invalidate the reels and tapes – invariably brings up a collateral and more general concern: whether or not, with the advent of digital technology, image has forsaken its once unimpeachable hold on the truth.

For the most part, skeptics call the whole effort a hoax but grudgingly admit The Navidson Record is a hoax of exceptional quality. Unfortunately out of those who accept its validity many tend to swear allegiance to tabloid-UFO sightings. Clearly it is not easy to appear credible when after vouching for the film’s verity, the discourse suddenly switches to why Elvis is still alive and probably wintering in the Florida Keys. One thing remains certain: any controversy surrounding Billy Meyer’s film on flying saucers has been supplanted by the house on Ash Tree Lane.

by Mark Z. Danielewski (born March 5, 1966)
from House of Leaves (2000)
image – bkhl

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