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Joni's paradise isnot just symbolic

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letters

Katherine Shonfield (aj 16.7.98) uses, for her Stansted analogy, Joni Mitchell's words, which at first appear to be symbolic (turning paradise into a hellish parking lot), but are in fact more meaningful.

The 'paradise' referred to in the song was the Paradise Apartments in la (on Sunset Boulevard I believe), where an artistic community had gathered. It was demolished as it had become rather run-down - whether the parking lot was a temporary measure or a more permanent creation, I don't know. It is therefore not so much a reference to a botch job but more an atypical blues nostalgic reference to the passing of years, of change, of lifestyle.

As such, Shonfield's primary point about the insensitivity of Stansted's alterations is compounded by an underlying concern that, to most, flying is no longer perceived as anything more than a common means of transportation and that the fuelling of society's consumerism is indeed paramount. Perhaps she is just getting old.

More seriously, one must question the statutory framework which has allowed internal alterations, to a public space, without sufficient quality and which sends such devalued messages to the users.

PATRICK HOGAN

Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire

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