Seeing Beyond: Movies, Visions, and Values now available

A brief W. R. Robinson biography

A W. R. Robinson bibliography

A W. R. Robinson lexicon

Quotes from W. R. Robinson

"'Like Light': The Movie Theory of W. R. Robinson" an essay by David Lavery

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A W. R. Robinson Lexicon


a factor that is operative in transcendence, in dying to be reborn again

Act, an

what is done in a unit of passion

Action, an

the process of what is done in a unit of passion


an action realized, brought off


without depth, flat


a solution to the problem of unity; is what it does and can do; its history the evidence and what it has done; what it can do, its potential, can only be known by working with it; it begets art

Center, the

the source that is everywhere and nowhere in a field of force from which the energy of the field of force flows; or the total forces in a field of force coordinated in a single act


any alteration that makes a difference; there are three kinds: a) of place; b) by cause and effect; and c) creative


a person's mark; the public identity that establishes him as a known and predictable figure


to make common; a mutual exchange of values: images communicate images


to unite by linking together in place; spatial organization


growing together.

Concrete thinking

a discipline in which the reflective powers concentrate on the individual rather than generalizations


growing together, coalescing


a complication or friction in the plot; there are three kinds: a) of man with the physical conditions of life; b) of man with himself--his head and his heart, his conscience with his passion; c) of man with the medium of his creative effort

Conjunctive powers

the forces that move toward unity


to know together with; the science of relations


to be united by linking sequentially; "temporal" organization


inclined to come together; the pre-condition of any plot and the major direction of the action of any plot up to the climax


an eye-to-eye alignment; a one-on-one relation


a radical change in form; the supreme instance of growth

Cut, a

the space in between movie images (since it is dark, it raises the question of whether the dark and death should be feared, of what happens in the dark; it is the key to what is carried across from one image to another; whereas with words, inventions of man's reflective powers, artifice is carried across; with images. entities within the visible creation, it is creative power that carries across the cut)

Disjunctive powers

the forces that move toward disunity or differentiation


the faculty of reacting to threatening or friendly forces

Energy transformation

an exchange of value that has qualitative consequences


getting the value out of; building upon the strength of


in contrast to revolution, which is a 180 degree reversal, it is progression by refinement in the relations of the vital powers


a transfer of value or energy. as when electrical energy turns into light


the faculty of sensing the ebb and flow in the interaction of the vital powers


the key to the perception of concrete individuals

Getting right with the light

aligning man's vital powers with their source and the medium of human life


an increase in the total energy of a system and therefore of its power to act (the opposite of entropy)


the method for describing the peculiar or unique, the concrete individual


a sensory, not a mental image; a visual event, specifically a birth


the image inventing capabilities whereby the potentialities of an image are given birth in a new image


the objective of the growth process


opposite of evaluation; assessing the worth of an individual in relation to a general principle or universal standard, thus emphasizing deficiency or looking for imperfections and weakness


the method of composition and consecution (it means "to put together")


the source and model of unity, simultaneously particle, wave, and quantum; an excess or overflow that breaks out in energy exchanges; has zero mass, no electrical charge, and an infinite life time; is the offspring of interactions


the surrounding, enveloping, pervading conductor, the source of the power for and means of change, not a vehicle for carrying a message or an intervening substance or device


a disciplined, systematic way of going after, pursuing, or seeking out


pertaining to the behavior of things or to systems of action


the study and rendering of change, or of relating to and relating change; simultaneously an art form and a science

New Story, The

a narrative in which the new frees itself from the old


throws itself in the way of or forward; an active, alive entity

Old Story, The

a narrative in which the old defeats the new, keeping it from breaking on through in a completely successful creation


an interaction between concrete individuals


a functional integration that includes all of the powers and all of the forms of growth


the discipline devoted to creating concrete individuals


the power of action


renewability, not just moldability; readiness to undergo qualitative alteration


the structure of an action (as opposed to just changing places); there are two kinds: a) that which moves toward disunity or disintegration. and b) that which moves toward unity or integration

Point of view

perception limited to a relation between one facet of perceiver and perceived


knowledge of value, of know-how; ability to work with, to make something of or actualize


a systematic activity that is capable of going forward


method by which the potential is made into an actuality


recognizing that relations are all that is "real"; that there is nothing out there but interactions


where relations occur, interactions transpire


extensions of man's physical powers that amplify and accelerate his capacity for action, his mobility; all art is technology


an exchange in which the powers of action are transferred or communicated from one individual to another

Trinary system

opposite of binary structure; means by which change occurs, of the dynamic process; its three aspects are a) the senses: the powers that conduct exchanges with the creation and the body of the system; b) the intellect: the powers that analyze or polarize and section the energy of the system; c) the imagination: the powers that integrate and coordinate the system as an on-going enterprise


a juxtaposition of powers that allows and enables them to work together in a common enterprise


strength; appears only in concrete instances; a field of energy at work, or of work in progress in which potential is being actualized


an eruption of vital powers, as when the embryo breaks the egg shell

Vital powers

all the activities life is capable of

White out, the

complete infusion of the eye and an action with light