A Cacophany of Color

So I finished reading The Primary Colors by Alexander Theroux, and it has left me impatient and excited to read The Secondary Colors.

The book is in a simple format of three Essays: Blue, Yellow, and Red.

As for blue, the first essay of the book, I didn’t know what to expect. It was a mash of many blue things and references that I am too young and not well versed enough in history or literature to understand. After realizing that I couldn’t relate to half the things he referenced, I started to just ebb with the fervor and interest in what he was saying and the book became a beautiful, magical wonderland of color. As for a quick sum up of “Blue”, this quote from the book hits the nail for me:

“‘I used to wonder why the sea was blue at a distance and green close up and colorless for that matter in your hands,’ writes Sr. Miriam Pollard, O.S.C.O., in The Listening God. ‘A lot of life is like that. A lot of life is just a matter of learning to like blue.'”

“Yellow” was a little disappointing for me. Yellow is my favorite color and has been for a couple of years. Theroux kind of focused on the yuck of yellow and how negative of a color it tends to me. But then I wonder if the stigma put on yellow subconsciously affected him; thus, Theroux would of course write a largely negative essay on yellow.

“Red” was interesting. I found myself most compelled by the section on religious references and red foods. The religious uses of red is fascinating because it is used for both male and female entities, but usually a belief system favors red for one gender or the other. The food portion was just beautiful; my imagination was vitalized.

“But whether as a color it is eaten or worn, shunned or feared, seen as a temptation or revered and held as holy, red is a color that is rarely denied an active role, even if one insists upon its gentler connotations.”

All in all, this book is a wonderful way to let your imagination blossom and to experience a synthesis with color that may not have been available by sight. If only Theroux made essays on all of the shades and tints he mentioned, then there would be a fascinating encyclopedia for color.


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