Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Corruption of Language and Thought

Here's what seems to me a confused essay relating the sublime to horror movies:


The writer, Eve Tushnet, uses "sublime" as almost the opposite of "beautiful." Yet the sublime is supposed to be the best in mankind. That which elevates us from the base. Horror movies, on the other hand, wallow in the base. Their effect comes from depictions of grossness and ugliness. They examine what's darkest within us.

Our culture today is in a full-on embrace of irrationality. Of nonstop media depictions of cruelty. Movies of horror, fantasy, and sadistic violence. That people enjoy these depictions says something about where we are now as a civilization. The greatest forms of art, the truly beautiful and sublime, have been shoved aside. We're more in pagan Rome than in what was once the good old U.S.A.-- which carried the heritage of the glories of Western civilization.


In my newest ebook, ABOUT WESTERN MOVIES, I discuss a movie genre which can be cruel but can also be, at its best, very beautiful. I'll take that genre anyday over the unending savagery of horror movies, which once were an artistic curiosity but have gone completely mainstream, leaving confusion in their wake.

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