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Related: room - bathroom - private - bodily functions
Films: Le Fantôme de la liberté - (1974)
Le Fantôme de la liberté - (1974) Luis Buñuel
Bourgeois couples discuss defecation around a toilet-lined table but consider "food" a taboo. They excuse themselves to eat food in private.
Fountain (1917) Marcel Duchamp
Fountain (1917) [Image link]
Fountain is a 1917 work of art by Marcel Duchamp. It is one of the pieces which he called readymades (also known as found art), because he made use of an already existing object—in this case a urinal, which he titled Fountain and signed R. Mutt. In 2004, Fountain was named the world's most influential piece of modern art in a survey of 500 artists, curators, critics and dealers. (source: Guardian)
Public reference to bodily functions such as urination and defecation is taboo in many cultures and thus arouses intense anxiety in many people. For this reason, there is a whole sub-genre of humour, toilet humour based around excretion. This genre is particularly popular with children.
Many artists have made their names promulgating toilet humour. Much of the lyrical content of avant garde rock musician Frank Zappa's songs revolved around toilet humour, eg, "Watch out where the huskies go, and don't you eat that yellow snow" (from the album Apostrophe). The humour of the animated series South Park also consists largely of toilet humour, even going so far as to have a talking piece of excrement as a major character. Dr. Slump, a manga from Akira Toriyama (the creator of Dragonball), also had a strong scatological bent.
Toilet humour also refers to jokes around modesty, such as if one is seen naked or in his/her undergarments. It can also refer to jokes revolving around the incontinence of infants and young children. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toilet_humour [Sept 2004]
Toilet (2004) - Michael Szymczyk
Toilet (2004) - Michael Szymczyk [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]
Toilet: The Novel is an existentialist novel by Michael Szymczyk about a toilet that was transformed into a man, first published in 2004.
The book is represented as a tribute to the literary works of Franz Kafka, and purported to be the founder of a movement in American literature called neo-existentialism. The book, making reference to existential themes of loneliness and death, explores the social effects of toilets transformed into people that retain the smell of excrement. It has been called, due to its numerous references to the Western intellectual tradition (such as Aeschylus, Nietzsche and Schopenhauer), a novel that embraces the past at the same time it breaks away from it. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toilet:_The_Novel [May 2006]
Michael Szymczyk is the author of Toilet: The Novel.
American novelist and philosopher, known in literary circles as "The Last Existentialist." The Kafkaesque style of his first work, "Toilet: The Novel" won him international recognition as one of the leading figures in the Neo-Existentialism movement in literature. He has also written numerous philosophical works, the most famous being, "On the Law of Insignificance". This work can best be summed up in the following formula, given enough time, everything becomes insignificant. His eccentric behaviour, which has included driving across the United States with a toilet seat around his head and other Dionysian stunts intended to show that, ""one can only live when one lives fully"", are said to have lead to his premature death. He is reported to have died on November 4th, 2004 in a motorcycle accident in Rome, Italy. Some speculate, however, that he faked his own death, in a manner resembling Rimbaud, and is still alive somewhere in Africa. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Szymczyk [May 2006]
See also: metamorphoses - toilet - novel - American literature - 2004
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