Not Signed-In
Which clippings match 'Infamy' keyword pg.1 of 1
06 FEBRUARY 2015

The search for paedophiles is more carnival than witch-hunt

"Our collective sympathy for the victims is obviously a given. And yet the quest to unearth celebrity sex offenders has become a form of crude cultural entertainment–but it is less witch–hunt, more carnival, in the sense proposed by critic Mikhail Bakhtin. Here social hierarchies are profaned and subverted by normally suppressed voices. Thus, the marginalised become the focus, princes become paupers, and opposites combine (high and low, fact and fantasy, heaven and hell).

This circus is conducted with a grotesque, 'world–upside–down' energy and black humour, in which charivari–ritual chastising and humiliation, not least of sexual transgressions–is accompanied by raucous collective mirth. Ultimately, order is restored, but not before authority figures have taken a beating.

And so we witness the toppling of the powerful by a righteous mob, as men of a certain age and cultural authority–backed by a degree of establishment collusion–are brought low with a barely contained collective thrill. Sometimes it feels as if all the icons of our childhood have been outed as sexual deviants–revenge for every night of bad television endured during the 1970s."

(Hannah Betts, 7 December 2012, The Guardian)

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TAGS

2012carnivalesquecelebrity • celebrity sex offenders • charivari • crime • criminal justice system • crude cultural entertainment • disc jockey • establishment collusion • fact and fantasy • fall from grace • grotesqueheaven and hell • high and low • humiliationinfamy • inverted order • Jimmy Savile • mass hysteria • Mikhail Bakhtin • moral panic • Operation Yewtree • outcast • paedophile • paedophilia • pariah • profaned • ritual chastising • scandalsex offenders • sexual deviant • sexual transgression • spectacleThe Guardian • witch trials • witch-hunt • world-upside-down

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
07 JANUARY 2015

The importance of critical perspectives for maintaining liberal society

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TAGS

anti-authoritarian • anti-institutional critique • anti-religious critique • Bernard Verlhac • blasphemy • Cabu (pseudonym) • cartooncartoonists • Charb (pseudonym) • Charlie Hebdo • comic strip • contempt • controversial contentcritical commentarycritical perspectivescritique of powerdeliberately offensive • distaste • free expressionfree speechfreedom of expression • freedom of the press • French cartoonistinfamousinfamy • insulting likeness • inviolable • Jean Cabut • lampooning • left-wing ideals • left-wing pluralism • liberal attitude • liberal democracies • liberal societymade to offendmagazine • magazine cover • mockingMohammad caricaturesmonotheismMuhammad cartoonsoffenceoffensive behaviour • Philippe Honore • pluralistic society • politically conscious • Pope • press freedom • provocative cartoons • provocative picturesreligious fundamentalism • reverence • sacredsatiresatirical illustration • satirical newspaper • secular society • sextremism • social critique • Stephane Charbonnier • Tignous (pseudonym) • vulgarity • weekly newspaper

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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