It reveals to us a strange mix of cultures. One is the ordinary functional modern Houston, the air conditioned oil boom town, celebrating its entrepreneurs, robust business and hustler culture. The other is the extraordinary just under the surface, the rich texture of human community which is sadly amnesiaed in more mundane times. In Harvey, we see these dueling ethics clash in amazing ways, and reveals how Houston’s disaster could hopefully open our minds to learn how to survive the future peril of a new climate reality.
The Geist, the specter, of Tyler Durden, fueled by the restless spirit of the office park dystopia, is a force personifying much of the malcontents in this age of anger. It’s interesting to place Fight Club not as fiction, but as prophetic documentary evidence of a time and place, a metaphor of the historical present, a world trapped between McWorld and Jihad, between globalism and it’s blowback.
Here I endeavor to explore the kachina cult, and how the influence of the West impacted Hopi Pueblo society. It begins as a simple story of a self-contained culture and its traditions, but soon winds through turns of critical theory and art history, arriving at unexpected places. I effort to explore ways and forms in which cultures have continued transformation in postmodern technoculture by using the Mickey Mouse kachina as a paradigm for cultural syncretism. It is a story which advances through narratives at first familiar, then stranger, and familiar again, arriving at an original move, and final speculation on the future of cultural theory.
If the simulation of empire is broken – what sort of blowback might be a fitting comeuppance from these Frankenstein’d gunslingsers from Frontierland? What sort of robojihad might they wage against McWorld’s future technotopia? What other vengences, what other of hell’s gates from the depths of history might be woken once simulation’s zero death game is betrayed?
In Pentagon language, the grotesqueries are obviated, decisions of violence taking on an official bureaucratic banalities steeped in Orwellian doublespeak. Likewise, the construction of the myth/ideology of the clean and righteous precision kill continues in the Pentagon’s construction of the narrative of war.
We now live in a kind of ironic time, struggling with the antiquated structure of America with another progressive history of reform – ending slavery, fighting for worker’s rights, women’s rights, civil rights – a legacy of protracted progress of inclusion and living democracy that challenges American democracy – not a a relic of the past but as a projection into the future. It’s worthwhile to remember that every bit of progress of inclusion, equality and fairness has required an enormous overcoming against the violent, reactive and entrenched forces of the managerial class. It comes from the disobedient, from those who fight to help fulfill the promise of self-governance.
I revisited this film a little while ago, Jim Jarmusch’s 1995 Johnny Depp starring black and white western Dead Man. It’s something of a minor cult classic and is loaded with great character actors […]