5 Quick Things: October 2019

Welcome to 5 Quick Things that I saw since last month that I thought were interesting enough to share with you. None of them are particularly timely so feel free to just enjoy 🙂

>Number One<

Odd Words Making False Worlds

I’ve always been a fan of the fact that language is kind of…not real. The thing is that people aren’t born talking, it’s all a learned event and language isn’t perfect. Words don’t mean the same thing to different people and sentences aren’t constructed with some sort of finite precision, they’re as infinite and varied as humans. This article has just a touch of explanation about that and how we’re all working together, all the time to construct and reconstruct the world through language. I like to think of humans are builders, working together through talking to make something that we hope is understood. And maybe mutually agreeable.

>Number Two<

Put a Spooky Media Lens On It

It’s the spooky month. October is the time of year where we all get together in our big comfortable sweaters, drink pumpkin flavored things, and watch spooky movies while under a big blanket and what is a better companion to those things than a deep dive into the meaning of those pieces of horror we love so much. This book is so important to media discussions and dissection of media that it’s one the things I suggest people read if they’re at all interested in diving deeper into themes and understanding of movies. Horror is interestingly one of those genres that seems to be willfully misunderstood and underestimated (though this seems to be changing a little bit more in our current age). This book is both a wonderfully succinct and easily readable primer on gender through the lens of horror film but also elevates the idea of horror from its sidelining in media and society. (This book is made of essays written between 1980 and 1990 so it’s not about to contend with modern horror and is slightly dated at points but still has quite a lot to say).

>Number Three<

Queer Theory in 80s and 90s Movies

Movies, but now make them gay (well not actually gay).

I love this quick look into action movies from the 80s and 90s through a queer lens. This video articulates many of my own thoughts about these movies in such a great way and you can certainly see the echos of these problems and tactics that are still used today. Also this video has a fantastic explanation of “male gaze” that easily explains a concept I have struggled to help other people understand and it uses Top Gun to demonstrate that and I’m just so pleased with that. I have had to do some weird soul searching about the MCU lately and this video helped me get many of my thoughts in order. I assure you that if you take the few minutes to watch this you’ll probably have some light bulb moments too.

>Number Four<

Trauma in the MCU

I guess I was just having a very movie forward month this month because this is just a fantastic post about trauma in Captain America: Civil War and how the many major characters in the film deal with and process trauma in a variety of different way. It’s one of my favorite films in the MCU specifically because of that reason so I’m glad that other people wrote about it so I don’t have to.

>Number Five<

Proto Literature

I just discovered this story despite the fact that it was written in 1890 and is one of the most influential pieces of American literature. Funny enough, many of my favorite movies seem to have been patterned off of this exact story. The story is quite short at a brisk 4000 words so it’ll take 15 minutes to read it and experience a truly significant piece of literature you might have missed.

Anyway, that’s all for now, see you next month!

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