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Glenn Freund of the League of STEAM

The Art of Disbelief

When you hear “suspension of disbelief,” what do you think? Do you think, like Samuel Taylor Coleridge, that it is a willingness to fall into a “poetic faith”? Maybe Coleridge is not your thing, and Wordsworth is more on the right track with “…to give the charm of novelty to things of every day, and to excite a feeling analogous to the supernatural.”

Whatever your take on it is, at the end of the day you are basically turning off a little logical piece of your brain and allowing the excitement of the fantastic to take you away. We may not realize how often we do this already in our everyday lives, but from the book you are reading on the train to work to the magician using a little prestidigitation to pull a coin out of your ear, we frequently suspend our disbelief for just a moment. Even though we logically know our protagonist is not real or that we most certainly did not put that quarter in our ear for safekeeping, we allow ourselves to be pulled in and enjoy the moment.

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Series: Steampunk Week