mintyalice

Posts Tagged ‘Occult’

Là-bas (The Damned)

In Novel on March 25, 2008 at 12:19 am

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The Damned/Là-bas (1891)

Author: Joris-Karl Huysmans
Publisher: Penguin Classic
Pages: 320 pages
I had this book on my Amazon wish list for a long time even though I didn’t know much about it except for it to be about Gilles de Rais and satanism. When I visited the fascinating Gustave Moreau Museum in Paris and saw the interesting show on author J.K. Huysmans’s fin de siècle (turn-of-the-century) writings in relation to Moreau’s fin de siècle paintings, I finally picked it up.

There’s not much of a plot to this book, in fact it reads more like nonfiction sometimes. But the subject matter is interesting and shocking for its time, hence quite a page turner. The novel starts with the author’s rambling on his dislike for Naturalism through the main character Durtal, a 19th century man bored with unromantic modern life and delved into writing a biography on Gilles de Rais, who’s also known as the “Blue Beard,” the world first known “serial killer” who tortured, raped and killed more than five hundred young boys during the Middle ages. A large part of the novel devoted to Durtal’s biography on Gilles, chronicling his role in aiding Joan of Arc to the very horrific atrocities he committed for Satanism. Dural also attempted to explain “how an honest soldiers and a decent Christian, could suddenly turn into an evil, cowardly, sacrilegious sadist.” These parts are the most captivating parts of the novel. It’s a good source to learn about Gilles de Rais and the medieval time. The author offered some interesting views on the matter through the characters.

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The Monk

In Novel on May 4, 2005 at 2:41 am

themonk.jpegThe Monk (1796)

by Matthew Lewis

Another Gothic related entry~ ^_- I have a BLAST reading this, it’s a pity this novel is burdened with the status of “Classic Literature”, when in fact it is a galloping over-the-top, exploitative sensational shock entertainment (you know, trashy like Wuthering Height). It is a DAMN good read! I feel ashamed to say but it is quite up there at my most favorite novels list. XD Though not the first, The Monk is the best-selling and most influential Gothic Literature of its time. Author Matthew Lewis wrote it when he was a 19 year old teenager in ten weeks…and it shows. The story revolves around a well respected and proud monk named Ambrosia. He regarded himself morally superior and cruelly unforgiving to everyone else. His vanity and inhumanity eventually led him spiral to hell in an epic, bloody and spectacular fashion full of horrors, tortures, witchcrafts and demons (the good stuff).

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The Bloody Countess

In History on January 1, 2005 at 3:28 am

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The Bloody Countess: The Atrocities of Erzsébet Báthory
Author: Valentine Penrose
Release Date: Sep 2000
Publisher: Creation Books
Pages: 189

Erzsébet Báthory, the beautiful 17th century Hungarian Countess who tortured and killed more than 600 girls and bathed in their blood, was not as widely known as the infamous Vlad the Impaler (immortalized as Dracula by Bram Stroker), nevertheless she was a popular gothic icon in horror stories (especially in Japan!? ^^;;). I’ve read dozen of Erzsébet Báthory-inspired characters in girly horror manga when I was young. Horrible but fascinating figure…

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Occult History of the Third Reich (1998)

In Documentary, History on October 11, 2004 at 6:32 am

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This documentary film attempted to examine Nazism from a different angle: the occult and mysticism. Interesting as it sounds, the production of this documentary itself is very very POOR! It’s just bunch of slap-together filler footages that has nothing to do with narrations, most of them were from the Hitler propaganda Triumph of the Will. Wagner’s music is playing as background music to give the sinister, Darth Vader evil-empire impression. A little graphic diagrams and captions would have help, especially since it talks often about symbols. This is a 3-parts series and I only watched the first disc The Enigma of the Swastika because I read from review that the next two are just repeating the same idea over and over again. Overall it does offer some interesting alternative understanding of the belief systems that rooted Nazism.

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