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cinemagician
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I didn't read Whit's definition closely enough.

I am sorry if I was part of the cause for having him pull the plug on the discussion.

Below is an example of ONE FINE POINT I wanted clarified before I felt I could accept the definition.

Version I.

I go up to someone with a lit cigarette, I make a fist and say, "check this out" I proceed to shove the cigarette into my fist. Instead of burning my hand and seeing a crushed up cigarette butt inside of it, the spectator sees nothing but an empty hand. The cigarette has vanished.

The valid sylogism is that I placed a lit cigarette into my hand.

The missing or untrue premise is that I did not, I put it you know where instead. This is the lie.

Version II.

I explain to the spectator that I am a hypnotist and that I am not actually holding a lit cigarette in my hand but I have have hypnotized them to think so. I proceed exactly as above, but soon after the cigarette enters the closed fist, I snap my fingers and bring them out of the trance. Since there is no cigarette, it validates my claim.

The valid sylogism (at least in the context of the performance) is that they were hypnotized. The false premise or the lie in this case is two fold.

One they were never hypnotized. Two, I achieved the illusion of hypnosis via the same method as above.

I DID NOT READ HIS DEFINITION CLOSELY ENOUGH

This is because he has changed it a few times. The first few definitions included the phrase

...with AT LEAST one missing or untrue premise.


The latest version includes the plural form of the word premise. Which I have put in Caps below.

The "Theater of Deception" (including fake magic, fake science, fake alchemy or any other similar "theatrical swindle") is distinguished by the the conscious attempt to create in the mind of the spectator, by act or words or expression, a formal logical argument (or syllogism) which is valid but who's PREMISES are untrue, thus seeming to prove something true that the spectators firmly believe or know is not true.

O.K. I finally understand and accept the definition.

Sorry If I muddled the thread up for others-

M. W. Walsh
...The best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity...

William Butler Yeats
Dave V
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The problem is, not all magic tricks will conform to his definition. Only the really good ones. Smile Maybe a better word would have been "hypothesis" rather than definition.

Quote:
Hypothesis:
1) A tentative explanation for an observation, phenomenon, or scientific problem that can be tested by further investigation.

2)Something taken to be true for the purpose of argument or investigation; an assumption.


Premises can be missing or untrue, but that's not enough. It's the entertainer's job to firmly set the rules for the upcoming deception, and then yank them away (hopefully in an entertaining fashion) leaving them in the dilemma that's outlined in Whit's hypothesis.


Version 2 gives the person an "out" by making them believe they were hypnotized. If you don't go to some effort to prove they're not, then you haven't created the dilemma of which Whit speaks.

To me, just snubbing out a cigarette and making it seem to vanish as in Version 1, is puzzling and that's about it. If you've studied Whit's routines you see how each of them is carefully constructed to get the desired reaction from the audience. There are no ten second throwaways, at least not by themselves. If used, they're inserted carefully as a convincer or to elicit a double take, as just one piece of a bigger routine.

I think this is a fascinating topic, but in a forum environment such as this it gets bogged down too quickly to make any useful progress.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
Whit Haydn
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That is exactly right, Dave. Except for the thing about magic tricks. All magic tricks fit the formula. If they do not involve a syllogism, then they are not a part of the Art of Magic. They are something else, which is defined in relation to how it handles the lie.

For example, a theatrical depiction of magic would involve the suspension of disbelief for the sake of the story.

A charlatan might convince someone of his magic powers in order to intimidate and control him.

The Theater uses the same tools from the Art of Deception that the Magician and the Charlatan Use, as well as the Con Man, the Sneak Thief and Card Cheat.

Make-up, voice impersonations, acting, costuming, writing, topits and trap doors and secret mechanical devices--these are all related and can be seen as simply the tools used by different arts that each use deception for some goal, either good or ill.
Dave V
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Maybe I should have put the term "magic tricks" in quotes. Not everything sold in magic shops really qualify as tricks, but more like puzzles to keep the magic consumers entertained.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
Whit Haydn
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That's right, and some involve deception, but are not part of the Art of Magic.

Plastic Dog Poop and Plastic Vomit are deceptions, but not part of the Art of Magic.

They would be part of the Art of Deception, probably under something like practical gags. The idea is to deceive someone into thinking something gross and difficult to manage has occurred. There are a lot of tricks such as these, and they are sold in magic shops. They are not magic.
RandyStewart
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Quote:
On 2006-05-17 00:29, Whit Haydn wrote:
Plastic Dog Poop and Plastic Vomit are deceptions, but not part of the Art of Magic.


Well ****, I think I just got it. Just been a patiently waiting for some bulb to go off.
Whit Haydn
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I am still working on the names of the categories, but I would now state things more like this:

One of the categories within the Theater of Deception is the "Theater of the Dilemma" (including fake magic, fake science, fake alchemy or any other similar "theatrical swindle") which is distinguished by the the conscious attempt to create in the mind of the spectator, by act or words or expression, a formal logical argument (or syllogism) which is valid but has at least one untrue premise, thus seeming to prove something true that the spectators firmly believe or know is not true.
Bill Palmer
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Okay. I accept the definition; however, I can think of at least one instance in which fake dog poop fits perfectly.

True story. A friend of mine worked for a major petrochemical company. It was his habit to purchase artificial dog poop which he would place in a conspicuous spot on the floor right before the inspector came in for his scheduled inspections. There was one coworker who would prance over to the phoney poop just before the inspector came through the door. He would make a big show of picking it up and taking it over to the trashcan.

My friend had had enough. So (and here comes the deception) He bought a tube of pre-mixed cookie dough. And he very carefully constructed an artificial dog poop out of it in the middle of the office floor. When the poop party pooper came over to pick it up, he received a really nasty surprise!

Immature? Yes. Funny? You bet!

:biglaugh: :rotfl:
"The Swatter"

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tommy
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Consider, for example, the categorical syllogism:
No geese are felines.
Some birds are geese.
Therefore, Some birds are not felines.

Categories are needed in order to state things categorically me thinks.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
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