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Tag Archives: psychoanalysis

Underwriting the Contemporary with Vanderpump Rules and Bret Easton Ellis

“My staff look amazing. I mean they really are gorgeous. Sometimes I wish they   were a little more beautiful on the inside, but they look great.” -Lisa Vanderpump   To say that reality television showcases “shitty people” for us to gawk at is, generally speaking, a misguided cliché. It presumes that normal people are […]

50 Shades of Grey, Duke of Burgundy, and the Intersubjective Dimension of S&M

The success of 50 Shades of Grey has opened up a certain conversation, however confused and hastily politicized, about the nature and role of domination and submission in human sexuality. This topic has been explored by writers and artists for centuries, stretching back in its current form to the Marquis de Sade and Leopold von […]

What The Bachelor Says About Hysteria and Feminine Subjectivity

Over the last few weeks, Brooklyn’s Morbid Anatomy Museum has held a series of lectures on the historical context of hysteria and the often bizarre treatment of hysterical patients. In her first talk, Asti Hustvedt, author of Medical Muses: Hysteria in Nineteenth-Century Paris, described in fascinating detail the transformation that hysteria underwent as a result […]

Terror and Taboo: Analyzing The Babadook

As the buzz surrounding Jennifer Kent’s debut feature The Babadook continues, horror fans would be forgiven for their skepticism. The praise is reaching critical mass. Director William Friedkin (The Exorcist) has “never seen a more terrifying film.” Stephen King has called it “deeply disturbing and highly recommended.” It has a near-perfect rating on Rotten Tomatoes, […]

Jason Aaron Comics and the Dialectic of Character and Culture

“It is folly to believe that you can bring the psychology of an individual successfully to life without putting him very firmly in a social setting.” -Tom Wolfe Tweet

God is In the TV: Achieving Social Reality in Dan Gilroy’s Nightcrawler

At its surface, Dan Gilroy’s debut feature Nightcrawler provides terribly pedestrian commentary on the moral vicissitudes of so-called modern media sensationalism. When freelance video-journalist Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) first meets jaded TV executrix Nina Romnia (Rene Russo), the latter describes her professional-aesthetic ideal to be “a screaming woman running down the street with her throat […]

Sweet, Sweet Suffering: Agony and Ecstasy Through All Nine Hellraiser Films

Growing up, Hellraiser was always the most intriguing of the major horror franchises. Children of the 1990’s will join me in remembering quite well the fear and attraction associated with Pinhead’s visage, sitting temptingly on the shelves of Blockbuster and Easy Video. For kids or young adults just getting into the horror genre and perhaps […]