Wednesday, November 26, 2008

boof-pfft-sllllt. tough news, if yr me.

for me, the hardest thing about trying to question the existence of "God" has always been the, i dunno, "culturally- Catholic" flavor of my own agnosticism. you can take the Boy out of the church, they say, but you can't take the incense-stench out of the subsequent young-goodman's nostrils. thus i grew up to play in bands and do writings that have always retained this weird, mystical, stigmata-ish bunch of motifs, to the point of being kind of an emo cliche.

well, imagine my chagrin. it seems i now have to contend with the revelation that gramsci, of all people, made a deathbed conversion to catholicism. boof!

i remember Fr. Edward Seton taking my (quasi-mandatory) confession, listening to my slew of well-reasoned arguments against teleology, and against sanctity as such. he told me, "you're a Catholic, Pat, you'll always be," and grinned shit-eatingly.

what sort of fate is this?

it's a good thing i just scored Bergman's religious trilogy, eh? thank you, Criterion. they're my primary texts, my vitamins on the "there is no god/yes, wait there is and god is horrible" score.also, i finally got around to seeing There Will Be Blood (n/c!). and i must say, that struck me as the most thoroughly agnostic sort of Horatio Alger/Morality Play thing I've seen since Crimes and Misdemeanors. top shelf!


Wilbur said...

Where did you pull those hot monstrance pics from? They look German to me, but the pics are kinda small.

gabbagabbahey said...

monstrances? pfff... consubstantiation (in a moderate form) ftw!

weird, just this morning I was thinking how the theme to Band of Brothers reminded me of Protestant hymns from 'my childhood' (the devil has all the best tunes, and all that!). the cultural part of organized religion is the one part I kinda have a lot of time for, strangely enough.

I guess for Gramsci, it just goes to prove the power of the dominant ideology, eh?

hmmm... it'd be interesting to denominationalise 'emo' in its cultural origins. looking at the members of Hoover (for example) I'm seeing more kind of Scots-Irish names than Irish-Catholic, so some kind of vast Joycean Catholic-doom theory is on shakey ground.

by the way (and noting that most of the above is tongue-in-cheek) have you heard of Fulmouth Kearney? He's Barack Obama's direct ancestor from Co. Offaly, and he was a Prod. After moving to Ohio his daughter married a Dunham (!) and thence on to Obama's mother, of the same surname. I especially like the way the name 'Fulmouth' prefigures BHO's rhetorical skill. (articles here and here - the second a good one on the interpretation of Irish-American demographics)

lex dexter said...

woah gabs! i need to make sure you don't think i'm expanding my joycean doom post-catholicism - yr very kind, btw - beyond reason!

i was definitely making fun of myself rather than trying to confuse myself with larger, qualitatively superior musical tributaries.

i'm just saying that i always poached jesus stuff in the same way that bands we like poached nautical motifs (jo44, shipping news) or other, overlapping visual lexicons that evoke ritualism and the perceived "arcane" (freemasonry).

but i do like the idea of an ethnonationalist, ethnomusoicological frameworks for understanding Hoover et. al. we could host an international academic panel and discuss (quintesentially drone-y) bagpipes, the Southern-Scotch-Irish violence of Dock Boggs, and the Louisville "Scene" as birds of a historic and an ethnic feather.

the great thing is, it'd only be 3/4 shite!

lex dexter said...

great articles! the second in particular. irish presbyterians? i had no idea.

gabbagabbahey said...

- re: presbyterians, definitely a minority of a minority in the South (though my cousin is one) but in Northern Ireland, they're a big group. In the more extreme form of the 'Free Presbyterian' Church and the associated Democratic Unionist Party, now the largest political party with Sinn Fein - they are also sadly the closest we have to Republican wingnuts and, apparently, the only people the Irish Times could find to argue for teaching creationism in schools