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Related: conflict between good and evil - bad - devil

Films with evil in the title: Evil Dead (1981)


Evil is a very old term for describing that which is morally bad, corrupt, wantonly destructive, selfish, and wicked. It is one half of the duality of good and evil expressed, in some form or another, by all known cultures. By its implication it describes a hierarchy of moral standards with regard to human behaviour; evil being the least desired, while love is the most praised. In a casual or derogatory use, the word "evil" can characterize people and behaviours that are painful, ruinous, or disastrous. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evil


Stranger-killing, the killing which has no motive, is something which we associate to "pure evil", and that we fear more than anything else in the world. There are several excellent examples of this morbid fascination, especially in the world of cinema: some of the most "relevant" contemporary blockbusters deal with the theme of serial killing (Ridley Scott's "Hannibal" and "The Silence of the Lambs", David Fincher's "Seven", Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho", Mary Harron's "American Psycho"). -- Albert Hofer, http://www.pileup.com/babyart/thesinisterinnocence.htm

Literature and Evil (1957) - Georges Bataille

  • Literature and Evil (1957) - Georges Bataille [Amazon.com]
    Georges Battaille throws down a challange to Jean-Paul Sartre, who held that "literature is inncocent". Bataille, in his examination of such figures as Emily Bronte, Sade, Baudelaire, Genet, Kafka and Michelet, and the component of "evil" in their works, argues that literature is, in fact, "guilty" and that, moreover, it must acknowledge itself as such. In his reading of these literary figures, Bataille proceeds to analyse literature's complicity with evil and how this enables it reach a fuller level of communication. Drawing on Freud, he "eroticises" literary creativity and contends that the notion of "Art for art's sake", which emerges as a reaction to a fragmented and reified social world dominated by utilitarianism and commodity fetishism, is actually a subterfuge, literature masquerading as innocent under the mantle of "pure art", in order to rechannel the forces that are dammed up owing to the repressions imposed by culture. Though elliptical and opaque, this book is a challenging and fascinating study, which has a potential for laying the foundations for a philosophy of composition that underwrites the aesthetic of evil and explores its relation to the overarching forces of institutional and administrative surveillance. --TheIrrationalMan, amazon.com

    The Lucifer Principle: A Scientific Expedition into the Forces of History (1997) - Howard K. Bloom

  • The Lucifer Principle: A Scientific Expedition into the Forces of History (1997) - Howard K. Bloom [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]
    The "Lucifer Principle" is freelance journalist Bloom's theory that evil-which manifests in violence, destructiveness and war-is woven into our biological fabric. A corollary is that evil is a by-product of nature's strategy to move the world to greater heights of organization and power as national or religious groups follow ideologies that trigger lofty ideals as well as base cruelty. In an ambitious, often provocative study, Bloom applies the ideas of sociobiology, ethology and the "killer ape" school of anthropology to the broad canvas of history, with examples ranging from Oliver Cromwell's reputed pleasure in killing and raping to Mao Tse-tung's bloody Cultural Revolution, India's caste system and Islamic fundamentalist expansion. Bloom says Americans suffer "perceptual shutdown" that blinds them to the United States' downward slide in the pecking order of nations. His use of concepts like pecking order, memes (self-replicating clusters of ideas), the "neural net" or group mind of the social "superorganism" seem more like metaphors than explanatory tools. --From Publishers Weekly

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