Amy's Reviews > Tales of H.P. Lovecraft

Tales of H.P. Lovecraft by H.P. Lovecraft
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's review
Mar 27, 09

bookshelves: currently-reading
Read in March, 2009

So far, my favorite story is "The Music of Eric Zahn." Simple, visceral, no over-explained mythology or exposition through relating research. So far, I dig certain aspects of Lovecraft: the idea of humanity being utterly unable to deal with the breadth of knowledge in the universe (knowledge as madness), that even though so much horror and science fiction has been created on his shoulders, reading these stories does not disappoint, but leaves me feeling that I've encountered something alien and original, but also timeless and primal. So far, what I don't like: He's very down on indigenous cultures, often painting them as worshipping that which causes madness. But counter to his portrayal, if you take some Native American cultures, as an example, they are about simplicity and balance. Not that there aren't darker sides to the culture (let's just say that according to some oral traditions, you wouldn't have wanted to be accused of witchcraft in some Pueblo communities a couple of hundred years ago.) but there are with all. Why not deal with his own? I know, it's the time he's writing in.
Also, witchcraft accusations in colonial New England? I think everyone knows where history came down on that. Sometimes I feel dirty when he says a character came through Salem as a way to validate rumors that they practiced black arts. Though these misconceptions are part of our culture, and it is telling (and thrilling in a frightening way) to read them, I wouldn't want to perpetuate them. I'm probably not explaining this well, but trying to helps the insomnia.

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03/27/2009 page 120

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