The Underground Lady [Page Forty-Seven]

There is no more deceptive category than the “person.”  Like the blank symbols used to represent male and female on contemporary bathroom stalls, it doesn’t even possess the contravening anatomy of gender to define it, and therefore, it can be made to mean almost anything.

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The Underground Lady loves the taboo and the stereotypical.  “Give me a good stereotype I can sink my teeth into,” she says, and her eyes shine with diabolical glee.

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The window that always rattles, finally being blown open by the wind in the night—this is death.

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We are beat upon and beat upon, until finally we give in, and the universe takes its revenge upon us for denying it and being animate.

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All the old mythologies are insufficient now.  Mythos itself is outmatched by the profound silence and heaviness of existence.  We are left bare, clueless before the real void.

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The mythologists among us have become an intolerable danger.

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Joseph Campbell was a great archivist and mythologist, and a terrible philosopher.  He said that we needed more myths, and more contemporary ones, as an afterthought near the end of The Hero with a Thousand Faces.  And from then on he became the philosopher of choice for those who know nothing about philosophy and have none of their own.  We do not need more myths—after all, we have too many already.  The whole project of modernism can be described quite accurately as the deconstructing of myths, and this includes those grand mythological systems with which Campbell was so concerned.  We need to get rid of the myths, big and small, that hold us in their servitude, and try our best to prevent the accretion of more obscuring material onto the human. 

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There is no such thing as an archetype.  There are similarities in stories from around the world because there are similarities driven into experience by the dimensions of necessity and the limitations of human action.  This does not mean that there is some kind of underlying substance that can be detected.  Such clap-trap is the basis of an unworldly philosophy which, however well motivated, leads inevitably to misunderstanding and exploitation, and eventually to disaster.  It obscures the violently imperialistic act of appointing what will and will not be privileged as an “archetype.”  Of course, the emphasis in the West is always on the most Christian-like choice.  Campbell, for instance, calls Jesus Christ “our Lord.”  Enough said.

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The Western capitalist-fascist intellectual, once completed as a type, will come wearing a sharp suit, with a tie done up in a crisp full Windsor knot.  Dollimore wears a full Windsor, doesn’t he?

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The economist and sociologist of our time are nightmares.  They will be seen by history to be monsters—or worse yet, they won’t be.

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In America they are only now beginning to realize that the whole world feared and hated both the Soviets and the U.S. throughout the Cold War.  Americans, up until recently, still lost in the fog of patriotic propaganda and false Cold War scholarship, thought that everyone should feel thankful towards them.  But it is rather hard to feel thankful for the threat of impending destruction, strung out over decades, and made even worse on the Americans’ part for their accompanying sociopathic cheerfulness.  The Soviets are almost regarded positively now, as having been the more brutally honest of the demonic pair.     

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The grotesque abounds, and America is at the heart of much of it.

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The point is not to hate anything, but only to point out what is.  If this is perceived as hatred, so be it.  This is what it means to be modern.

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