Monday, November 19, 2007

steeped in evil

It is the beginning of the holiday season, and I am steeped in evil. It is term-paper time. My tentative title is "A Candle in the Darkness: The Treatment of Evil in Literature". We have to cover all twelve works we read this semester, and discuss the treatment of evil, and posit our own theories. We also have to use at least 5 outside sources.

So every night I read a little evil. So far, I have read People of the Lie, The Roots of Evil, and am working through The History of Hell, and Evil, Ethics and Literature. It is amazing how a scholarly treatment of the subject can suck all the life out of it. Evil should be fascinating. It should be the car wreck you can't turn away from on the highway. It should be the thing you know is waiting in the dark basement. The poised snake, waiting to strike. It should not be dull.

It should be exciting enough to write a 18-20 page paper in the next three weeks.

1 comment:

Kitten Herder said...

Too bad you can't use movies, I'd recommend "The Devil's Advocate", "Angel Heart", "The Prophecy", "Apocalypse Now," the TV series "Millenium," and two very strange Russian movies in a series: "Night Watch" and "Day Watch".

Depending on one's perspective, evil has a role in the universe. Without evil there can be no good (without dark how does one define light?).

What is 'evil'? Is it, simplified, meanness for the sake of meanness? Is it chaos in contrast to order? Is it holding the desires of the one above the needs of the many?

This may sound odd, but I think I would really like to read your paper when you're done.