other than just twisting my head inside out w/ the plot, language & the sheer, but maybe also impenetrable--i want to use a word here i will not sother than just twisting my head inside out w/ the plot, language & the sheer, but maybe also impenetrable--i want to use a word here i will not so maybe someone who stumbles upon this will not be immediately turned off by my personal lack of class--horror, but--jesus ... sorry--the horror, the only disappointing occurrence in the act of my reading dorothea tanning's one novel is knowing that it is her one & only novel. but then again, the calm schizoid nature throughout the very brief but very busy book may've only been achievable by the accident of circumstances: an artist, who is as an accomplished writer/poet/translator--smart, in another word--decides to write her first novel in her later years & nails it in a way only they could. or, it was achievable only by dorothea tanning. maybe not the first that comes to mind when women surrealists are mentioned, or american women surrealists for that matter, but probably close or maybe so.
i know her best for her paintings, which i lazily group among other "women surrealist painters" like leonora carrington, remedios varo, leonor fini &, yes, frida kahlo, in addition to pretty much anything i come across while perusing the aforementioned. many of the women making art & running around w/ the bad boys of surrealism in their day, like tanning, were jacks-of-any-trade-they-tried, writing, of course, being one of those not completely foreign to painting, photography, &tc., the more expressive forms of trade. leonora carrington's art, then writing, is what led me to dorothea tanning & many others. & while i like a little more than some of some of the male exponents of surrealism, i've found, personally, both the visual art & the written stuff--particularly the written--of the women surrealists much more appealing for whatever reason. i feel slightly qualified to say this as i spent a lost, ill-advised & very much soused year of college trying to render meaning from meaningless poetry. there has always been a suspicious, gimmicky angle to surrealism for me, which i also get is part of the whole movement to begin w/; &, while i admit i'm less acquainted w/ it than the more famous work of the more famous men, i have yet to come across anything, painting or writing at least, that feels like a trick--good or bad. i know this sounds straight-up sexist & maybe it is, but it's like my inability to understand what the hell it means doesn't mean it's meaningless ... except for the dudes' stuff. i'm a dude. it i don't get the meaning then it's meaningless
also: she was married to max ernst (from 1946 until his death in 1976) & served as translator when he wrote. the two of them actually lived in sedona, arizona.* they also lived in new york, paris, provence & other cool places cool people like themselves could afford to live. somewhere, this review obviously lost its meaning, so i will bid you adieu, except for a short list of writers this very short book reminded me off, y'know, kind of what you hate a book review to include only slightly more than you hate one for not including:
leonora carrington roberto bolaño jorge luis borges giorgio de chimico john collier & sort of edgar allan poe
obviously this list really only points out that i have so many more women to read.
also: here's a pretty cool painting by dorothea tanning:
*i think (young, good) steve martin namedrops sedona as the place king tut eventually settles on his his seven-inch novelty hit, king tut, but then again, it may just be arizona in general & the whole rhyme thing got me....more
doug horne, chief analyst for military records for the assassination records review board & author of inside the assassination records review boardoug horne, chief analyst for military records for the assassination records review board & author of inside the assassination records review board: the u.s. government's final attempt to reconcile the conflicting medical evidence in the assassination of jfk, a five volume set just over 2,000 pages long, in which he shows, beyond what any jack-ass could possibly call even an unreasonable doubt, exactly how the autopsy of john kennedy was co-opted by a cabal of military, cia & rich dick civilians, w/ proof of post-mortem surgery, faked/altered x-rays & much, much more, presents a brief--for horne, at least--case for the why of the how of the kennedy assassination he actually already solved several years ago w/ his ferocious pursuit in declassifying documents, formulating absolute proof of both the faked autopsy & the alterations made to the zapruder film. yup, that's right. this bad-ass published his findings in the five volume set previously mentioned in december of 2009, four years before the fiftieth celebrationanniversary of the assassination. he has continued since then to add to & explain his work in a carefully nuanced way that takes a page out of kennedy's playbook of the long-range, global vision that had his myopic, fear-mongering national security establishment shitting themselves so hard they finally had to take him out of play. then last year, he published this work, which takes all the evidence he & others from the a.r.r.b. have found in the documents they declassified in its four year existence &, not needing to present it here b/c it's all been documented already & therefore sourced as opposed to repeated, distilled it into his view of how the assassination came to be. horne, like peter dale scott & others, views the actual ground operation & its participants as window dressing compared to the complete operation & the [redacted]s that envisioned, organized & provided the logistics to carry it out & then orchestrate the massive cover-up. in order to leave this review spoiler free, i'll just say that he names names of the piece of shit, [redacted] & [redacted] [redacted]s most responsible & answers not only nearly every pertinent question i've ever had, but also many, many i never thought to ask. if this all seems a bit anticlimactic, after all these years, when even the most intelligent & ardent researchers dissatisfied w/ our government's official verdict(s) profess, continually, their belief that something beyond demystification is, in fact, demystified, yer not alone. as per usual, it seems only weirdos like myself who give a shit about this are even aware of the existence of doug horne & his work, but that is where the knowledge-boner lies. he knows the truth. & now, so do i.
so yeah, read this if yer wondering why the world is so fucked up & give a shit about understanding the most important thing that happened in yer lifetime. yeah. you. everybody alive now or planning to be alive in the future. everywhere. all of you....more
one star, barely, for mentioning the ridiculous pomp dallas celebrated on the fiftieth anniversary of john kennedy's assassination. it was something tone star, barely, for mentioning the ridiculous pomp dallas celebrated on the fiftieth anniversary of john kennedy's assassination. it was something to be inside of, lemme tell you. the city had the sack to call it, simply, "the fiftieth," not something more appropriate like, say, "the it's been fifty years since the president of the united states had his brains blowed out in broad daylight in the only city it could've happened in b/c the people who own it tried to hide their own bald greed behind something they actually considered more palatable like good ol' straight-up racism, which was true, but, like the civil war & how today people are convinced to vote against their own self-interest, was really just the show to draw the suckers b/c really, it was always just about the money, motherfuckers," or like, something w/ at least the guy who got murdered's initials in it.
otherwise, this book is the equivalent of a fucking war crime; so bad, the review i wasted an hour writing earlier had to be destroyed from the taint of the book itself....more
the rating is pretty much entirely for the photos & non-jfk related history of dallas, as any mention of the assassination sticks to the no-longerthe rating is pretty much entirely for the photos & non-jfk related history of dallas, as any mention of the assassination sticks to the no-longer-even-endorsed-by-the-united-states-government story that oswald acted alone in the killing of jfk. it also includes its fair share of hero worship for the dirty cop (but who wasn't, really?), philanderer, proud member of the ku klux klan & monumental fuck-up as far as whatever he was supposed to be doing when he was shot to death, dallas patrolman of eleven years w/o a single promotion j.d. tippett. but i stopped giving a shit about opinions, reason, logic, evidence, facts, &c. a while ago when it comes to the kennedy assassination. everything, no matter how complicated or unknowable, breaks down to plain-ass semantics eventually. i mean, i still follow it, sure. everybody's got their stories to watch, right?
anyway, this book gets extra points for having the actual addresses of many significant locations, ranging from the essential to the maybe relevant/maybe not. along w/ the photos are historical briefs & info regarding the current state, or the lack thereof due to being leveled & quickly built over (a complete three block radius surrounding ruby's carousal club), allowed to fall into such disrepair that tearing down became the only option--despite many attempts at revitalization--(the elspeth apartments in oak cliff where lee, marina & baby june lived for parts of 1962 & 1963) &, of course, the rejuvenation/alterations of the building now known as the sixth floor museum at dealer plaza, but is more famously known by its name in november of 1963, the texas school book depository, which include the sealing-off from the public of the window oswald allegedly fired from & the controversial 1989 addition of a ground-level visitors' center in the rear along w/ an exterior elevator tower to provide quick & easy access to the propaganda show upstairs. growing up here & knowing a bit about dallas, i've always gotten a bit of a kick out of the fact that the city itself has had to embrace this hardly flattering shard of history due to the location of the tragedy. i mean, you can hardly make the single most historical square mile in a very large city disappear. a replica of his original log cabin honoring the founder of dallas, john neely bryan ("the first white settler in the area" *) & the "old red courthouse" erected in 1892 are just two of the untouchables right there in the mix, not to mention the dallas county records building, the dallas county criminal courts building & the dallas county jail.
& just to make you feel even better, the triple underpass/dealey plaza projects--both of them (1934 & 1941)--were almost entirely paid for by the works progress administration, a cool million for the first & ninety-two grand for the second. them's 1934 & 1941 dollars, mind you. good for the folks that needed the work at the time, but surely they could've been put up to something better than beautifying the future crime scene of arguably--&, yes, here i am referring to lincoln as the only arguable choice--the most famous murder in the history of the united states of america.
there are also some pretty amazing photos taken that weekend, & it's sort of refreshing that they mostly lack commentary w/ any agenda. but i'm losing my frame of reference here, focus, time allowed for inessential activities, &c., so that's all i s'pose. this is why i don't write reviews anymore. to quote the father, donald barthelme, "the thing about him is, he warp." barthelme himself was posthumously--& somewhat humorously, or not--tangentially linked to the assassination of john fitzgerald kennedy in a speculative piece in the december 2001 issue of harper's by paul lambert allman, which imagines barthelme as the mastermind behind the very real 1986 assault on dan rather--whom don b. did nurture a healthy distaste for from their early days on as houston journalists--outside his new york apartment by two men repeating the phrase, "kenneth, what's the frequency?" as evidence, allman cites several examples in barthelme's writing, including the appearance of the phrase "what is the frequency?", a recurring character named kenneth & a story about a narcissistic jack-ass named lather who happens to be a newspaperman. rather, of course, was on the scene in dallas, & was the very first representative of our unimpugnable press to see the zapruder film, after which he immediately claimed to've seen kennedy's head snap violently forward, which, of course, is the exact opposite of what the film shows. in another pointless, barely related note, barthelme did publish his story saving robert kennedy from drowning in the new yorker less than two months before jfk's assassination, but if you've read any donald barthelme, you probably realize the story's not really about saving robert kennedy from drowning, or drowning, or even that much about robert kennedy. but you get my point, yeah? about focus, yeah? yeah ...
*this is a direct quote from the book, which i find hilarious b/c was it really necessary to point out the man was white? & why didn't it just go ahead & say "the first white male settler in the area," or even better, "the first white male cisgender settler in the area"? ahh, dallas ......more
three stars for the happy meal like packaging of the non-controversial, yet subjective nonetheless, minipediaish cataloging of, at the least, fifty ofthree stars for the happy meal like packaging of the non-controversial, yet subjective nonetheless, minipediaish cataloging of, at the least, fifty of the most thought-provoking psychology theories.
but what is provocation? theories? psychology? thought? fifty? occasional lapses into incoherence a la the preceding circular stupidity mostly just proves what the book subtly admits nearly every entry: you can't really explain shit in half a minute. thirty seconds is more the time zone for panic & huge, irreversible mistakes, like sapping someone who witnessed you in a moment of compromise & running before assessing yer options. or tackling them & forcing a forget-me-now down their throat & rubbing their head until their unconscious. but as usual, i'm getting off point.
i learned some pretty important shit here that i did not know; or, really, was just unaware they were things. ignorance, i think they call it. books like this are good for picking up ideas/facts you should've known already way long ago, thus reducing yer overall chance of sounding stupid at any moment, while simultaneously empowering you to feel more comfortable throwing yer own bull shit opinion out in conversations you might've previously endured silently. if you don't know what i'm talking about, go fuck yerself. i don't really mean that. what i mean is, probably nobody likes you, b/c yer a know-it-all, & we're not. like how i'm we now? anyway, this is why i'm not about to reveal what any of those things that i never really didn't not know in the first place were ... not.
the fourth star is for the art, or design, or graphic design, whatevers. the illustrations, of which at least almost half the book is, are slick, glossy sort of pomo clipart collages that often add nothing, or even make sense in regard to their text counterparts. despite a vague whiff of marketing about them, i find them inexplicably appealing--almost in a pavlovian way. read the book. you'll get the reference. %^]...more