[jahsonic.com] - [Next >>]

[<<] May 2005 blog (12) [>>]

Blog archive: here.

art - erotica - film - index - gallery - home - lifestyle - literature - links - music - search - theory

WWW jahsonic.com

"Method of this work:
literary montage.
I have nothing to say only to show."
(Passagenwerk (1927 - 1940) - Walter Benjamin)

2005, May 26; 23:32 ::: Midi/Minuit Fantastique no. 17

Midi-Minuit Fantastique no. 17 (1967)

An auction has started of rare French magazine "Midi Minuit Fantastique" #17 devoted to BARBARA STEELE for a great part of it and also to Horror and SF - 145 Pages - Dated of 1967 [Ebay.com]

see also: Midi/Minuit Fantastique

2005, May 26; 23:32 ::: El caso de las dos bellezas (1969) - Jess Franco

El caso de las dos bellezas (1969) - Jess Franco
image sourced here.

Jess Franco

2005, May 26; 23:32 ::: Violence in the Cinema (1963)

Found the below at my local second hand store: Motion 4 [Feb 1963], titled a 'Companion to Sadism and Violence in the Cinema,' includes entries by Durgnat on monsters, flagellation, leather, Barbara Steele, Elisha Cook Jr., Rififi and even William Wyler. --http://www.durgnat.com/mundy.html [May 2005]

subtitled: Companion to violence and sadism in the cinema.

Why do we devote an entire issue to violence and sadism?

Because they are there. --Raymond Durgnat, from the intro

Note: Lily Abegg, The Mind of East Asia (NewYork: Thames and Hudson, 1952)

see also: Raymond Durgnat - violent film

2005, May 26; 23:32 ::: Erotic dance

Succubus (1968) - Jess Franco
image sourced here.

Crazy Horse, Paris (1962) - Frank Horvat
image sourced here.

Erotic dance is a major category or classification of dance forms or dance styles, where the purpose is the stimulation or arousal of erotic or sexual thoughts or actions.

This compares to other major dance categories based on purpose, such as ceremonial dance, competitive dance, participation dance, performance dance and social dance.

The erotic dancer's clothing is often minimal, and may be gradually decreased or eliminated altogether. In some areas it is illegal for the female dancer to expose their genitalia. These dancers will often wear g-strings in order to comply with the law. An erotic male dancer with little clothes, e.g. only briefs, is sometimes called a "macho dancer".

Nudity, however, is not a prerogative of erotic dance. The culture and the ability of the human body is a significant aesthetic component in many dance styles. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erotic_dance [May 2005]

erotica - dance - striptease

2005, May 26; 23:26 ::: Macho

In American literature, a memorable example of machismo comes from Tennessee Williams' character Stanley Kowlaski, the egotistical brother-in-law in A Streetcar Named Desire. In the play (and in the motion picture), Stanley epitomises the hyper-masculine alpha male, socially and physically dominating and imposing his will upon his wife and her sister, Blanche Dubois. Bound up with Stanley's aggressive and occasionally misogynist views is a strong sense of pride and honour which leads to his hatred of Blanche. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Machismo [May 2005]

An alpha male or alpha female is the individual in the community to whom the others follow and defer. Humans and their nearest species-relatives, the chimpanzees, show deference to the alpha of the community by ritualized gestures such as bowing, allowing the alpha to walk first in a procession, or standing aside when the alpha challenges. Canines also show deference to the alpha male in their pack, by allowing him to be the first to eat and the first to mate. Wolves are a well known example of this. The status of alpha is generally achieved by means of superior physical prowess. However in certain highly-social species such as the Bonobo apes, the alpha can use more indirect methods (such as political alliances) to oust the ruling alpha and take his/her place. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alpha_male [May 2005]

see also: sociology - hierarchy

2005, May 26; 22:23 ::: Quadrophenia (1979) - Franc Roddam

Quadrophenia (1979) - Franc Roddam [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Mod Revival

The year was 1979. The Who, arguably the quintessential Mod band of the Sixties, released a film called "Quadrophenia." The film was set in 1964 and depicted a young man's decline as he becomes involved with the Mod scene. Soon he is taking drugs and fighting with the Rockers in the infamous Brighton riot of that year. The film starred Phil Daniels and Sting. The band Blur, one of the new Mod Revival Revival bands of the Nineties, featured Phil in their video for "Park Life" in 1994. "Quadrophenia" was the beginning of a Mod Revival in the late Seventies and early Eighties. New bands were spawned which were influenced not only by the music of the Sixties, but by the fashions as well. The Mod Revival in part helped launch the birth of New Wave music as an offshoot of Punk Rock. --modmiss [2004]

Mods and Rockers
The Mods and the Rockers were two British youth movements of the early 1960s. Gangs of mods and rockers fighting in 1964 sparked a moral panic about British youth. They can be seen as a type of Folk devil.

The Rockers adopted a macho biker gang image tending to wear such clothes as black leather jackets.

The Mods adopted a pose of scooter-driving sophistication. It was believed that Mods were cleaner and tidier than Rockers. They often wore colourful clothes considered outrageous by the standards of the time.

In Britain during the 1960s most teenage boys could not afford a motorbike or a motor scooter. These bikes/scooters were a status symbol perhaps equivalent to a car today.

The film Quadrophenia (1979), based on the album of the same name by The Who (1973), also commemorated the movement. The conflict between the Mods and the Rockers was the butt of a joke in The Beatles' first film A Hard Day's Night. In the press conference scene, a hapless reporter asks Ringo, "Are you a mod or a rocker?", to which he replies "I'm a mocker." --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rockers_%28youth_movement%29 [May 2005]

Did the mods like Northern Soul?

see also: mod - 1979 - 1964

2005, May 26; 13:41 ::: Categorising pornography

Since arguing about pornography often involves arguing about sexuality, there is a fertile store of metaphors concerning sexuality waiting to be transferred - usually unconsciously - into the pornography debate. Both opponents, defenders and producers of pornography use metaphorical reasoning, and often, indeed, use the same metaphors. Moreover, the category itself is subject to much equivocation, whether deliberate or accidental. For these reasons, debates about pornography are particularly suitable for linguistic analysis.

Most texts on pornography start with a definition of the word, but unfortunately pornography is a hard thing to define. It is particularly common, as Andrea Dworkin (1981) does, to provide a limited and very specific definition of pornography, then widen the discussion to include almost any commercially produced erotic material. Worse still, many writers (again including Dworkin, and Steinem (1991:53)) argue that pornography means "writing about vile whores", from the Greek pornos, a fairly common case of confusing etymology with meaning; what "pornography" may have meant to the ancient Greeks is of little relevance today.

PORNOGRAPHY is in fact a complex and fuzzy category, involving prototype effects and implicit value judgements. Adopting the type of extended definition used by Anna Wierzbicka (1992), we might propose the following:

  1. It is words or pictures;
  2. Someone makes it to make people feel something;
  3. This something is like wanting sex;
  4. Because of this, people pay money for it;
  5. [I think this is bad].

The third element is somewhat confusing; "sexual arousal" might seem more specific, but this term, like its "folk" equivalents such as "feeling horny", is also, I believe, a cultural construct, and probabaly less specific than it appears. The final point, "I think this is bad", does not always apply, but in general, the words "pornography" and "pornographic" have negative connotations, whether these are moral or aesthetic. If a more positive term is wanted, the words "erotica" or "erotic" are usually used instead. EROTICA can be defined in the same way as follows:

  1. It is something people make;
  2. It can make people feel something;
  3. This something is like wanting to have sex;
  4. It can also make people feel other things;
  5. [I think this is good].

The difference between the two terms, apart from the moral/aesthetic judgement, largely rests on the intention of the person doing the "making". It is assumed that the pornographer produces pornography with the sole intention of causing people to feel sexually aroused, usually for financial gain. Erotica, however, may also have aesthetic or expressive purposes; there is less sense of the producer manipulating the feelings of the consumer, and less implication of purely financial motives. There is also a difference as regards the medium; the word "pornography" is nearly always applied to written texts, film and, primarily, photographs. One may say "an erotic statue", but probably not "a pornographic statue".

Wierzbicka's method of defining concepts works well in explaining the speaker's intention in using a particular term; one can see them as answers to the question "What exactly do you mean by ....?" However, they leave unaddressed the question of what may be seen as good or poor examples of the category in question (Lehrer, 1990:368). Obviously some idea of what constitutes prototypical pornography is called for, but PORNOGRAPHY is more complex than such celebrated prototype categories as BIRD. There is substantial agreement among subjects as to what constitute good and bad examples of a bird, and the boundary is not particularly fuzzy; even very poor examples, such as an ostritch, are still definitely birds (Wierzbicka, 1990:350). However, with the category PORNOGRAPHY things are more complicated. Not only will one item be seen as more or less pornographic than another, but different people will grade items differently, or disagree as to whether an item is a category member at all, saying things like "Well, Playboy isn't really pornography."

Playboy is an interesting case, in that while it is on the fuzzy boundary of the PORNOGRAPHY category, it is a central member of the category SOFT PORNOGRAPHY; in fact we might go as far as to say this magazine has defined the category. Prototypical soft pornography is basically what one would expect to see in a Playboy centrefold: the subject is a beautiful young (but not too young) woman, in a position which is implicity (but not overly) sexually inviting, and aesthetic considerations are important, putting this type inside the EROTICA category as well - at least according to some. HARD PORNOGRAPHY, on the other hand, is more central to the PORNOGRAPHY category, involving explicit sexual activity and, usually, a blatant disregard of aesthetic standards. Hard pornography tends to violate (culture-specific) moral standards as well; often, as we shall see later, this is a large part of its appeal, which is frequently exploited by its producers. However, since not all people have identical moral standards, what offends one person may be lauded by another; hard pornography is generally seen as somehow more offensive than softcore, but sometimes the argument is reversed.

It is not surprising then, that debates over such a complex and fuzzy category should be plagued by terminological confusion and outright equivocation, as we saw in the Dworkin example. Attitudes to pornography are also influenced by our attitudes to sexuality, and both are influenced heavily by metaphor. I shall therefore look first at some of the metaphors for describing sexuality proposed by Lakoff and Johnson (plus a few of my own), before examining the role of metaphor in structuring our experience of, and attitudes towards, pornography.

Attitudes to Sexuality

In Women, Fire and Dangerous Things (1987), Lakoff examines a number of metaphors which are used in the English-speaking world to structure experience of sexuality. One such metaphor is LUST IS HUNGER; THE OBJECT OF LUST IS FOOD. This gives rise to statements like "He's sex-starved," or "She had him drooling," (Lakoff, 1987:409) and such endearments and slang terms as honey, cheesecake, beefcake, hunk and buns. These are taken from American English, but similar examples exist in other languages; for example, Turkish describes attractive women as fIstIk gibi ("nut-like"), fIndIk ("hazelnut") or balIk eti ("fish-meat" - pleasantly plump) - the diet is different but the metaphor is the same.

Related to this is A LUSTFUL PERSON IS AN ANIMAL. This is coherent with the previous metaphor, since we see animals as preoccupied with both food and sex. Examples of this metaphor are "Get away from me, you brute!", "Wanna nuzzle up close?" and "Stop pawing me!", as well as the usual range of animal terms: bitch, tigress, wolf, stud and so on (1987:410). Because lust makes us animal and animals are not rational, we imagine that lust makes us lose our reason, giving the metaphor LUST IS INSANITY ("I'm crazy about her", "I'm madly in love with him" etc. (1987:410)).

A rather different, but still not incompatible, way of looking at lust is LUST IS WAR: "He fled from her advances", "She surrendered to him" etc. (1987:411). This is familiar ground, since like insanity, the metaphor LOVE IS WAR is the stuff of poetry and romantic fiction, as well as everyday speech. LUST IS WAR shares the violent and irrational associations of A LUSTFUL PERSON IS AN ANIMAL and LUST IS INSANITY, but adds the element of strategy and, most importantly, a win/lose dimension (which it shares with another metaphor, LUST IS A GAME).

Possibly the most basic metaphor, however, is SEXUALITY IS A PHYSICAL FORCE; LUST IS THE REACTION TO THAT FORCE. Thus we talk about a person's electricity or magnetism, of attraction or being drawn to someone, and so on. On its own this is a deeply buried metaphor, but in combination with others, as we shall see, its effects can be devastating (another word used metaphorically for sexual attraction).

Having looked briefly at Lakoff's metaphors, I would like to propose a simple and obvious one which is nevertheless crucial to the discourse of the pornography debate: SEX IS DIRTY. This is so common that it is seen as a value-judgement or a psychological problem rather than a metaphor, which is what it actually is. Its probable origin lies in the proximity of the genitals to the anus and urethra, and utilises a more basic metonymy, CLOSENESS IS SIMILARITY (which is also the basis of the "guilt by association" argument). The sexual act itself can also be a pretty messy affair. Thus we talk about "dirty jokes" and "dirty old men", or say that someone has a filthy mind. This is closely related to the metaphor MORALITY IS CLEAN; IMMORALITY IS DIRTY, which gives us statements such as "Don't sweep it under the carpet" and "Can you dig up any dirt on the other candidate? No, he's squeaky-clean." Putting the two together, by metaphorical reasoning, we get the value judgement, or propositional model, Sex is immoral.

These metaphors are not culturally neutral (although they do exist across a wide range of cultures). They both reflect and shape Anglo-Saxon attitudes towards sexuality for better or worse (usually worse, as Lakoff points out). Because of this, when a new debate related to sexuality, such as the pornography debate, occurs, it will automatically draw its metaphors from the existing stock. --Robin Turner, Debating Pornography: Categories and Metaphors via http://neptune.spaceports.com/~words/debating.html [May 2005]

see also: erotica - pornography - linguistics

2005, May 26; 11:40 ::: Art and censorship

Our society controls its arts and media through legal and regulatory systems, suppressing obscene and offensive material. The most commonly censored words and images all relate to either blasphemy, sex, violence, death, or bodily fluids. This introduction to art censorship analyses why these particular themes are tabooed, and highlights some key examples of their artistic transgression. The emphasis is primarily upon visual media such as photography, television, and film. One problem with any discussion of 'extreme' art is the abject nature of many of the works themselves. The examples (and some exclusive photographs) below are explicit, though they do also have artistic merit. --Matthew Hunt via http://www.matthewhunt.com/taboo.html [May 2005]

2005, May 26; 11:19 ::: History of horror films

Der Golem (1920) - Carl Boese, Paul Wegener [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

"If movies are the dreams of the mass culture... horror movies are the nightmares" — Stephen King, Danse Macabre

Horror is an ancient art form. We have tried to terrify each other with tales which trigger the less logical parts of our imaginations for as long as we've told stories. From the ballads of the ancient world to modern urban myths, audiences willingly offer themselves up to sadistic storytellers to be scared witless, and they are happy to pay for the privilege. Theories abound as to why this is so; do we derive basic thrills from triggering the rush of adrenalin which fear brings, or do horror stories serve a wider moral purpose, reinforcing the rules and taboos of our society and showing the macabre fate of those who transgress?

Horror movies have long served both purposes. They deliver thrills by the hearseload, as well as telling us stories of the dark, forbidden side of life (and death). They also provide a revealing mirror image of the anxieties of their time. Nosferatu (1922) is not simply a tale of vampirism, but offers heart-rending images of a town beleaguered by premature and random deaths, echoes of the Great War and the Great Flu Epidemic fatalities. At the other end of the century Blade (1998) is not just a tale of vampirism either, but reflects a fear of the powerful yet irresponsible elements in society, echoes down the corridor indeed of the seemingly impunitive behaviour of those at the top.

Each generation gets the horror films it deserves, and one of the more fascinating aspects of the study of the genre is the changing nature of the monsters who present a threat. In the early 1940s, a world living under the shadow of Hitler's predatory tendencies identified a part-man, part-wolf whose bestial nature caused him to tear apart those who crossed his path as their boogeyman. In the 1990s however, there was no need for a part wolf component: Jonathan Doe (Se7en 1994) and Hannibal Lecter (Manhunter 1986, Silence of the Lambs 1991, Hannibal 2001) were entirely human in their calculated and stylised killing methods. As we move on into the twenty first century, the ghosts and zombies are back in vogue as Eastern and Western superstitions converge.

The best way to study films is, of course, to watch them. However, it is also important to have some sense of a film's context, both the wider socio-historical background against which it was made, and also its artistic framework. Use the menus on the left to take you to pages that will provide you with background information, and some pointers on where to investigate further. --Karina Wilson via http://www.horrorfilmhistory.com/ [May 2005]

see also: horror - history of horror films

2005, May 26; 01:09 ::: Pink Floyd for More (1968) - Barbet Schroeder

Pink Floyd for More (1968) - Barbet Schroeder [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Concocted for director Barbet Schroeder's dystopian hippie road flick, this album marks Floyd's first venture into film "scoring," a task they undertake with a verve that overshadows their lack of formal training in the field. With just a handful of cuts echoing the trippy, atmospheric space-rock that was so much a part of their early career, there's a surprisingly familiar dedication to songcraft evident here, especially for a soundtrack. Roger Waters's acoustic ballads ("Cirrus Minor," "Crying Song," "Green is the Color"), dark and dirge-like, are familiar predecessors to music that would highlight Wish You Were Here and The Wall, while Dave Gilmour's slashing riffs on "The Nile Song" also foreshadow greatness to come. Moody and surprisingly eclectic, More has rightly earned its place as a Floyd cult fave. --Jerry McCulley, Amazon.com

see also: Pink Floyd - Barbet Schroeder

2005, May 26; 00:52 ::: Vanishing Point (1971) - Richard C. Sarafian

image sourced here.

Vanishing Point (1971) - Richard C. Sarafian [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Vanishing Point (1971): When Barry Newman is told to drive a Dodge Challenger from Denver to San Francisco for no apparent reason, he decides to do it in 15 hours, also for no apparent reason. Maybe the police wouldn't worry so much about his speeding if they knew they were simply part of an existential chase thriller. As one critic put it, "Exceptional rock score." --http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/infrastructure/rw96k.htm [May 2005]

2005, May 26; 00:52 ::: Zabriskie Point (1970) - Michelangelo Antonioni

Zabriskie Point (1970) - Michelangelo Antonioni [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

image sourced here.

Pink Floyd for Zabriskie Point (1970) - Michelangelo Antonioni [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

2005, May 26; 00:33 ::: Jeanne Moreau (1928 - )

image sourced here.

Jeanne Moreau and Marcello Mastroianni
La notte (1961) - Michelangelo Antonioni [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Continuing the "alienation trilogy" that began with L'Avventura and ended with L'Eclisse, Michelangelo Antonioni's La Notte is a visually arresting, emotionally numbing exercise in chronic ennui. The film's anesthetizing effect is entirely intentional; Antonioni's central couple (Marcello Mastroianni as a self-absorbed novelist, Jeanne Moreau as his bored and wealthy wife) wallow in their own emotional desolation, constantly drifting--and in Moreau's case, literally drifting--from one disaffected scene to the next. Antonioni's pained study of modern detachment is richly supported by his visuals, often placing his isolated characters in a harsh landscape of empty glamor and even emptier emotions. Driving the point home is Monica Vitti as Marcello's would-be mistress; in their aimless lassitude, neither can muster the necessary passion. It's all too superficial to register with any lasting dramatic impact, but La Notte remains the fascinating work of a master, redefining how movies reflect the many facets of humanity. --Jeff Shannon

Antonioni's study of alienation and moral decay chronicles a day in the life of a middle-class couple whose marriage has been destroyed by mutual indifference and impenetrable loneliness.

see also: Jeanne Moreau - Michelangelo Antonioni

more actresses: Laura Antonelli - Asia Argento - Ewa Aulin - Theda Bara - Brigitte Bardot - Femi Benussi - Jane Birkin - Erika Blanc - Florinda Bolkan - Louise Brooks - Clara Bow - Marilyn Chambers - Marlene Dietrich - Edwige Fenech - Jane Fonda - Laura Gemser - Eva Ionesco - Grace Jones - Hedy Lamarr - Christina Lindberg - Sophia Loren - Linda Lovelace - Jayne Mansfield - Mary Mendum - Soledad Miranda - Chesty Morgan - Marilyn Monroe - Rosalba Neri - Bettie Page - Ingrid Pitt - Janine Reynaud - Romy Schneider - Delphine Seyrig - Barbara Steele - Sharon Tate - Mary Woronov

more actors: Paul Bartel - Michel Blanc - Dirk Bogarde - Lon Chaney - Joe Dallesandro - Gérard Depardieu - Bruce Dern - Patrick Dewaere - Clint Eastwood - Klaus Kinski - Jack Nicholson - Sean Penn - James Woods

2005, May 25; 23:41 ::: Countess Dracula (1972) - Peter Sasdy

Countess Dracula (1972) - Peter Sasdy [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]
image sourced here.

Ingrid Pitt in Countess Dracula and The Vampire Lovers
Polish-born actress Ingrid Pitt's erotically supercharged presence is the highlight of this double bill of vampire chills from Hammer Films. In Countess Dracula, Pitt stars as an aging noblewoman (inspired by the real-life Erzebeth Bathory) who discovers the secret to eternal youth in the veins of young virgins, while in The Vampire Lovers (based on J. Sheridan LeFanu's "Carmilla"), Pitt's sensuous bloodsucker seduces Hammer starlets Madeleine Smith and Kate O'Mara and incurs the vengeful wrath of Peter Cushing. Countess is the more sober of the two films, with Jeremy Paul's script and Peter Sadsy's direction playing out more like an Old Dark House mystery than Hammer horror, while Lovers' aims for comic-book thrills with plenty of nudity and violence (much of which was trimmed from the American version, but reinstated here); in both cases, Pitt's sexy/scary performances make this DVD a memorably viewing experience for vintage and new-school horror fans alike. --Paul Gaita

via http://www.bittercinema.com [May 2005]

Elizabeth Bathory - female vampire

2005, May 25; 22:57 ::: Anti-social

Anti-social behaviour is that lacking in judgement and consideration for others, ranging from careless negligence to deliberately damaging activity, vandalism and graffiti for example. Someone behaving in an anti-social manner may be a manifestation of an antisocial personality disorder.

In 2003, the United Kingdom created a scheme to lower the amount of anti-social behaviour within the nation. The law in the UK is called the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003.

The counter part of Anti-Social Behaviour is Pro-Social Behaviour. Pro-Social Behaviour is any behaviour intended to help or benefit another person, group or society. To determine what is Pro-Social Behaviour, we observe the underlying goal (motive) that initiates and drives the behaviour rather than the actual outcome of the behaviour. True Pro-Social behaviour is intentional. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-social [May 2005]

see also: anti - social

2005, May 25; 22:35 ::: Haunted (2005) - Chuck Palahniuk

Haunted (2005) - Chuck Palahniuk [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

From Publishers Weekly
What elevates Palahniuk's best novels (e.g., Fight Club) above their shocking premises is his ability to find humanity in deeply grotesque characters. But such generosity of spirit is not evident in his latest, which charts the trials of a group of aspiring writers brought together for a three-month writer's retreat in an abandoned theater. The novel intersperses the writers' poems and short stories with tales of the indignities they heap upon themselves after deciding to turn their lives into a "true-life horror story with a happy ending." They lock themselves in the theater, reasoning that once they're found, they'll all become rich and famous. They raise the stakes of their story by first depriving themselves of phones, and then of food and electricity; eventually they cut off their own fingers, toes and unmentionables before they start dying off and eating each other. Palahniuk tells his story with such blithe disregard for these characters that it's hard not to wish he had dispensed with the novel altogether and published, instead, the 23 short stories that pop up throughout the book. For instance, "Obsolete," about a young girl about to commit state-mandated suicide, and "Slumming," about rich couples who pretend to be homeless, play so deftly with expectations and have an emotional core so surprising that they consistently, powerfully transcend their macabre premises to showcase the heart beating beneath the horrors. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --via Amazon.com

From Booklist
In this over-the-top gore fest from Palahniuk (Fight Club, 1996; Lullaby, 2002), a group of aspiring writers move into a locked, windowless theater to write their masterpieces under the guidance of a (seemingly) old man. The story of their hellacious retreat-kidnapping is interspersed with poems about the various writers and stories by them. Convinced that they will one day sell the story of their dystopian nightmare for millions, the writers seek out suffering to make their lives saleable: they starve themselves, lop off body parts, cannibalize, and so on. The stories here vaguely resemble ghost stories, but rather than being scary, they're just disgusting. Sex dolls shaped like children, a fetus aborted by Marilyn Monroe, a pool intake sucking out a man's colon--you get the picture. There's a point to the madness--Palahniuk is exploring our yearning for suffering and our newfound desire to make our misery marketable. The allegory is sometimes very clever and pitch-black funny. But Haunted provokes a lot more nausea and eye rolls than deep thoughts. One hesitates to criticize a novel featuring a chef who murders people who review his dishes poorly, but we'll take our chances; this novel will please Palahniuk's hardcore fans and few others. But he certainly has his many and devoted fans. John Green via Amazon.com

Chuck Palahniuk
Charles Michael "Chuck" Palahniuk (born February 21, 1961 in Pasco, Washington, USA) is an American satirical novelist and freelance journalist living in Portland, Oregon. He is best known for the award-winning novel Fight Club, which was later made into a film directed by David Fincher. He has one of the largest centralized followings of any author on the Internet, based around his official web site. His writings, similar in style to those of such peers as Bret Easton Ellis, Irvine Welsh, and Douglas Coupland, have made him one of the most popular novelists of Generation X. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_Palahniuk [May 2005]

Transgressional fiction
The characters are people who have been marginalized in one form or another by society, and who react with often self-destructive aggressiveness (a form of story that the author likes to describe as transgressional fiction). Through these tales, he attempts to comment on the current problems of society, such as materialism. However, with the controversy surrounding written works with such themes in the aftermath of the events of September 11, 2001, Palahniuk chose to start writing with a more subtle approach to get the same messages across. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_Palahniuk [May 2005]

see also: transgressive

2005, May 25; 18:17 ::: Message for Curt

Jan--please slow down, dude. --Curt Purcell of groovyageofhorror
Is this better? I had some other things to, so I had to slow it up a bit.

Did you catch the groovy page?

2005, May 25; 18:11 ::: Reality and simulation

reality - simulation

2005, May 25; 15:10 ::: I and the other

I (self) - other

2005, May 25; 15:10 ::: Pinku Eiga, Japanese softcore film

Pinku eiga (lit. "pink film") is a style of Japanese softcore pornographic films that originated in the early 1960s and are still being produced. The term pinku eiga was coined by journalist Minoru Murai. Pink films should be distinguished from adult videos and non-Japanese sexploitation films.

Subgenres produced by Nikkatsu studios include the early (starting in 1971) Roman Porno pink films with well known directors, and an ultra-violent rape-themed subgenre also from the 1970s called Violent Pink. Toei studios' genre of erotic sex-and-violence films is termed Toei's Pinky Violence. Many of these are not centered on violence and have some artistic merit. Examples of the latter include Shunya Ito's "Sasori" (lit. scorpion) series of women in prison films (Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion (1972), Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41 (1972), Female Prisoner Scorpion: Beast Stable (1973)) based on Toru Shinohara's manga and starring Meiko Kaji, who ironically wanted to distance herself from pink films and has only one erotic scene in the series. After first Ito and then Kaji left the project, the series rapidly deteriorated in artistic quality and focused more on sex and violence.

While some directors have used pink films as a steppingstone for their careers, others work exclusively with the genre. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pinku_eiga [May 2005]

see also: erotica - pinku eiga - softcore - film in Japan - Japanese erotica - mainstream erotic movies

2005, May 25; 14:20 ::: Love goddesses

Claudia Cardinale, photocredit unidentified

Belinda Lee, photocredit unidentified

Senta Berger, photocredit unidentified

Ursula Andress, photocredit unidentified

Cheryl Grunwald, photocredit unidentified

images sourced at http://www.lovegoddess.info [May 2005]

very first movies did not reveal the names of the actors and actresses in the credit titles. Public interest however was so strong that nicknames were given to the most frequently seen players. One nameless face was soon dubbed "The Biograph Girl" and another "The Vitograph Girl".

Once it became clear that movie patrons were fascinated by the stars, movie moguls quickly realised that personal publicity for stars would pay dividends at the box office. Fictitious life stories were invented and, not long after, flattering photographs were incorporated into the scheme.

An entire sub-industry of glamour was established and central to this was the glamour photographer. The best of these photographers developed new ideas and skills in capturing people's images in a flattering way, and now decades later, some, like George Hurrell and Eugene Robert Richee, are rightly celebrated as masters of their craft. --http://www.lovegoddess.info/Movie%20Pin-up%20revised.htm [May 2005]

see also: diva

2005, May 25; 13:25 ::: William Mortensen

Human Relations (1932) - William Mortensen
image sourced here.

Torso (ca. 1930s) - William Mortensen
image sourced here.

blog archive - previous blog - other blogs and sites

your Amazon recommendations - Jahsonic - early adopter products

Managed Hosting by NG Communications