Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Folie à Deux, Folie à Wikipedia

"Folie à Deux" is a beautiful name for a terrible disorder: "a rare psychiatric syndrome in which a symptom of psychosis (particularly a paranoid or delusional belief) is transmitted from one individual to another" (wikipedia, of course). Got here from the equally if not moreso terrifying "delusional parasitosis," the syndrome that kept me awake worrying about getting after reading A Scanner Darkly. Too many terrible things to worry about, although based on reality I suppose I should be worried about Toxoplasmosis gondii, a parasitic microbe that lives in cats (like the one not three inches from me!), has infected one half of the human race and causes "neuroticism, defined as an emotional or mental disorder characterized by high levels of anxiety, insecurity or depression." Has a cat, acts like a jerk- it's like these scientists know me. Oh, Nomi, you're Daddy's little disease vector!
This all makes me think about body horror, a concept that Cronenberg plays around with a lot and thus one finds out about in Canadian Cinema classes. The wikipedia entry for body horror also hooks one up with Ionescu's play Rhinocéros, which is allegedly an allegory for the rise of facism and Nazism in Europe through the eventual transformation of almost everyone in a small town into the titular creatures. It also apparently has this piece of dialogue, which makes me want to take it out of the library tomorrow:

JEAN: [to BERENGER] Instead of squandering all your spare money on drink, isn't it better to buy a ticket for an interesting play? Do you know anything about the avant-garde theatre there's so much talk about? Have you seen Ionesco's plays?
BERENGER: [to JEAN] Unfortunately, no. I've only heard people talk about them. (...)
JEAN: [to BERENGER] There's one playing now. [both JEAN and BERINGER turn to face the audience and stare, breaking the fourth wall] Take advantage of it.

Not sure where I'm going, except that I wonder if you could define "body horror"- as a phenomenon- as being overly concerned about the spatial limits of the human body. In any case, I take almost all of the bizarre aches that I experience- probably due to the fact that every muscle in my body is constantly tensed up like catgut strings- as bad omens.
While my first reaction is to be disappointed in Obama's showing tonight, but really it's amazing how well he's done. Even if I end up voting for Clinton, it'll be really positive to have a woman in the White House- I just wish it was another one.
Here's to relaxing.

No comments: