Prosecute the torture.

April 30, 2016

The "Can You Hack Up Words Like Camille Paglia" Contest!

It's a very late April Saturday and my Sanders friends and Clinton friends are still hard at work trashing each other's candidates - a fight I refuse to join or endorse - while Donald Trump continues his unending two-step through the rubbish-tip that is contemporary GOP politics.

I'd been waiting for a break in the noise since when, about week ago, I stumbled across this Wonkette page:
Readers, it’s time for a group project! Camille Paglia, as we all know, is the most insufferably obnoxious writer in the United States of the Entire Universe. As the late great Molly Ivins explained in her seminal piece on Paglia’s masturbatory oeuvre, she is a fan of “sweeping generalizations” that always argue from whatever viewpoint she’s finding most contrarian that day, and she seems to revel in it. Also, every single thing people do is somehow related to the secret feelings in their penis and vagina regions, and these secret feelings connect all the way back to the Greek gods and OMG THE COSMOS. She’s a fucking hack, is what we are saying.
And then:
So we figured we’d turn this into a contest for you, the gentle readers. Can YOU write dumbstupid, contrarian mumbo jumbo in a self-congratulatory way, rife with sweeping assertions and bizarre psychosexual allusions that make your readers want to back away slowly?
While I would not call Camille Paglia "the most insufferably obnoxious writer in the United States of the Entire Universe" I certainly wouldn't argue much with anyone who thought so.  She can be tiresome and dreadful with an excruciatingly bad habit of basing her critiques of any aspect of feminism with what happened to her personally - when she was at Yale, in New Haven, in the 1970s.  Like here:
Hillary [Clinton] was attending the Yale Law School while I was a graduate student across the street. In 1970, a sparsely attended feminist conference was held at the Law School, featuring well-known figures like Kate Millett and Naomi Weisstein. If Hillary was there, she did nothing to stand out. It was at that conference that I realized that second-wave feminism, then barely three years old, was already going off the rails. For example, the radical lesbian Rita Mae Brown said to me, “The difference between you and me, Camille, is that you want to save the universities and I want to burn them down.”

I have written elsewhere about my many clashes with early feminists—such as a near-fistfight with the New Haven Women’s Liberation Rock Band over my fervent love of the “sexist” Rolling Stones or a rancorous confrontation about the very existence of sex-hormones with women’s studies professors at an Albany restaurant.
While there may be valid critiques of second (and third) wave feminism(s), I hardly imagine they have anything to do with an argument between Camille and Jennifer Abod.

But I would've been about 10 yrs old and living about 20 miles north of Camille at that point, so how would I know?

If you want to languish in Ivins' seminal slapdown of Camille masturbatory oevre, it can be found here.  It ends this way:
There is one area in which I think Paglia and I would agree that politically correct feminism has produced a noticeable inequity. Nowadays, when a woman behaves in a hysterical and disagreeable fashion, we say, “Poor dear, it’s probably PMS.” Whereas, if a man behaves in a hysterical and disagreeable fashion, we say, “What an asshole.” Let me leap to correct this unfairness by saying of Paglia: Sheesh, what an asshole.
Yea, that's about right.

Did you know Camille's also a birther?

So I decided, a few days ago, try my hand at writing like Camille.  Only, I am going to post it here at 2PJ rather than sending it to Wonkette (sorry Wonkette but it's too good of an idea not to steal).  I may not be a Yale-trained PhD but I know academic BS when I see it.  My plan for my "Hack up words like Camille" piece is:
  • Reference some details from obscure mythological figure mentioned in Paradise Lost and/or Spenser's Fairie Queene.
  • Quote out of context some unknown pre-Freudian writer on sex and/or anthropology
  • Mention, to the point of uncomfortable obsession, personal similarities to Keith Richards and/or Madonna
  • Tie some pop-culture and/or political event to how vapid the Democratic Party and/or contemporary Hollywood is
  • Get in an unfair criticism of contemporary feminism and/or lesbians
And my guess is that it will miraculously write itself.  Only a few paragraphs, that's all I'll need to produce.

If YOU have a submission that you want to see posted here, please feel free to send it in.

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