Nebelland (Land of Fog)

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Fog is an overused trope. It serves of course as a backdrop for everything spooky, because fog makes us afraid of not knowing. There is also the personal, psychological fog that makes us forget the past or prevents us from seeing clearly into the future, like in Kazuo Ishiguro’s The Buried Giant or Miguel de Unamuno’s Niebla.

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More dramatically, there is the governmentally imposed fog, as in Alfred Kubin’s visionary Die Andere Seite.

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Today’s pictures are from a very recent trip to the Indiana Dunes. A bit of fog helps to hide the view of the industrial port areas north of Gary. This is scenic, too, but I can’t post pictures here, because, alas, the Indiana Administrative Code explicitly forbids to take pictures of the port, even when standing outside the area.

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But spreading fog, for whatever purpose, has also the side effect to make the things that remain visible to appear more true to themselves, like the trees here.

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Ingeborg Bachmann, whose thin oeuvre has many references to fog, insisted, while charging her co-writers to become eye-openers for others, that we humans are capable of bearing the truth.

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