➬ No Go the Bogeyman: Scaring, Lulling, and Making Mock Read ➵ Author Marina Warner – Writerscompany.co.uk

No Go the Bogeyman: Scaring, Lulling, and Making Mock Ugh I really worked hard on this book I chose to read it because it was supposed to explore within mythology and storytelling our age old, outmoded notions about masculine identity and about racial stereotyping, and warns us of the dangerous, unthinking ways we perpetuate the bogeyman Does it I don t know I read at least 250 pages that boiled down to one idea Cannibalism finds its way into mythology, folklore, folk traditions, and art Ok, but why 250 pages just to say that over and over Ugh I really worked hard on this book I chose to read it because it was supposed to explore within mythology and storytelling our age old, outmoded notions about masculine identity and about racial stereotyping, and warns us of the dangerous, unthinking ways we perpetuate the bogeyman Does it I don t know I read at least 250 pages that boiled down to one idea Cannibalism finds its way into mythology, folklore, folk traditions, and art Ok, but why 250 pages just to say that over and over again I got it the first time One reviewer nailed the problem I think It s as though the author found so many examples that she couldn t help but stuff them all into the book It became mind numbing.This book also has whole paragraphs without a topic sentence and chapters that just don t add anything to the main thesis And racism and masculinity I didn t see those discussions anywhere.Anyway, I do give it two stars as a hard core enthusiast may slog their way through it, but I can t recommend it otherwise A great look at the things that go bump, and the way these primal fears are dealt with in story, song, and rhyme There s a great section that deals almost entirely with the imagery of eating and stories of cannibalism From there, Warner discusses lullabies, their function for both mother and child, and the numerous reasons so many traditional lullabies seem to be non child friendly, to modern ears Then, on to tricksters and mocking in story and traditional celebrations Fascinating, and a ver A great look at the things that go bump, and the way these primal fears are dealt with in story, song, and rhyme There s a great section that deals almost entirely with the imagery of eating and stories of cannibalism From there, Warner discusses lullabies, their function for both mother and child, and the numerous reasons so many traditional lullabies seem to be non child friendly, to modern ears Then, on to tricksters and mocking in story and traditional celebrations Fascinating, and a very readable scholarly book Also, there are bananas No Go the Bogeyman is a disquisition on the emotion of fear, from a point of view at the intersection of psychology with folklore and mythology I might almost have said it s psychoanalytic, but that would be misleading, since Warner is no fan of Freud she thinks his storytelling is much too limiting, too culturally blinkered She does find something of value in some later psychoanalytic writers, such as Lacan, but picks and chooses among their ideas Nonetheless, what else to call the practi No Go the Bogeyman is a disquisition on the emotion of fear, from a point of view at the intersection of psychology with folklore and mythology I might almost have said it s psychoanalytic, but that would be misleading, since Warner is no fan of Freud she thinks his storytelling is much too limiting, too culturally blinkered She does find something of value in some later psychoanalytic writers, such as Lacan, but picks and chooses among their ideas Nonetheless, what else to call the practice of disinterring the hidden themes of stories, finding in them concerns with food and death, conflict between parents and children, etc This practice may predate Freud, but not by much What I find distinctive about Warner s approach is her concern with the cultural setting of stories, which does vary over time I haven t read many other books of this sort which so clearly recognize that, although some psychological needs are universal, a lot depends on both the physical conditions of life and the culture which has developed over time She is certainly very interested in the manifestations of her themes in the present day it is appropriate that she spends a lot of time talking about other times and places, to show by contrast how things we might take for granted in fact are recent developments.Warner s psychological approach also dictates that she discusses authored and anonymous texts, high, low, and oral art forms, all together Again, she does not neglect to consider the social conditions under which her sources were produced when interpreting them Since she does not want to neglect the experiences of that very large section of humanity whose words didn t get into print until very recently, folklore, lullabys, and other oral literature provide valuable sources, though not always easy to interpret.Nonetheless, I found this a frustrating book Its subject matter is sprawling, and although Warner tries her best to tie it all together for instance, the last two chapters, about the relationship of racism and jokes, make reference to cannibalism and eating, subjects that recur throughout the book they would otherwise seemout of place than they do , the end result doesn t entirely cohere The work is full of analyses and speckled with fine insights, but it s hard to say what the overall argument would be Another, rather minor, flaw is that Warner unfortunately betrays her utter ignorance of biology and natural history whenever her discussion touches on them 3.5 stars in actuality, but I d rather veer on the 4 than the 3 because there is good stuff here, just you have to trawl through a lot to uncover it.Divided into 3 parts, bogeyman, lulling and making mock, the book studies the cultural history of monsters bogeymen based around our infantile primitive fears round food both hunger and the fear of being devoured consumed in the form of gross giants or cannibals Then sections 2 3 look at how we defang these fears through lull aby and taking t 3.5 stars in actuality, but I d rather veer on the 4 than the 3 because there is good stuff here, just you have to trawl through a lot to uncover it.Divided into 3 parts, bogeyman, lulling and making mock, the book studies the cultural history of monsters bogeymen based around our infantile primitive fears round food both hunger and the fear of being devoured consumed in the form of gross giants or cannibals Then sections 2 3 look at how we defang these fears through lull aby and taking the piss out of it I thought the Lull section was the most interesting, probably as Warner herself says, because it is the least studied of the 3 so provided fresh insights The bogeyman I found unfocused and overwhelmed by its research, I couldn t as so often with these type of books bringing in some many different styles of cultural artefact evidence really pick out the argument other than a repetition of the themes of giants, cannibalism and ogres Section 3 also seemed quite narrow and yet diffuse at the same time, with a whole chapter on the humble banana s role in humour and subversion, only undercut in times of actual shortage of the foodstuff, all of which I felt was both obvious could have been said in a paragraph not a whole chapter and somewhat stretching the point of mock And yet within this section was also a valuable slant into the difference between laughing at someone and laughing with them, when Warner points out that authorities fear and persecute parodists and satirists when the audience are laughing with the comics, rather than comedy that just picks on unfortunate people who the audience laughs at as other or victim or outsider.A mixed bag, but if you re dedicated there are some useful ideas revealed here A non fiction book written by a fiction writer makes for a good read. Took me some time to finish this book Apparently while I love fairy tales and learning about them I have significantly less attachment to the monsters of storytelling There is a lot of good information in this book and I particularly liked the making mock section Warners thoughts on fear and the varied human reactions to it were thought provoking I learned a great deal and am glad I read it. Fascinating study into fear and the way it s handled throughout history, in myriad forms The first two sections scaring and lulling are a little stronger than the third, making mock, but the whole thing is nonetheless fascinating.Re read as a writing reference. No Go The Bogeyman Considers The Enduring Presence And Popularity Of Figures Of Male Terror, Establishing Their Origins In Mythology And Their Current Relation To Ideas About Sexuality And Power, Youth And Age Songs, Stories, Images, And Films About Frightening Monsters Have Always Been Invented To Allay The Very Terrors That Our Sleep Of Reason Conjures Up Warner Shows How These Images And Stories, While They May Unfold Along Different Lines Scaring, Lulling, Or Making Mock Have The Strategic Simultaneous Purpose Of Both Arousing And Controlling The Underlying Fear In Analysis Of Material Long Overlooked By Cultural Critics, Historians, And Even Psychologists, Warner Revises Our Understanding Of Storytelling In Our Contemporary Culture She Asks Us To Reconsider The Unintended Consequences Of Our Age Old, Outmoded Notions About Masculine Identity And About Racial Stereotyping, And Warns Us Of The Dangerous, Unthinking Ways We Perpetuate The Bogeyman This is a re read but confirms how much I love this far reaching compendium of the many ways we scare and soothe ourselves through our stories, songs, and lore The section on lullabies alone is worth the read An exhausting study of the psychological background of the Boogie Man and other mythical entities I cannot understand how such interesting characters can be made to seem so dull


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