Monday, July 28, 2008

Mining Cartoons

These cartoons from the late 1950s provide anthropologists with a goldmine.

In the first one, you've got the beatnik wild man stereotype, the temptations of an evil weed. Our krew fits right in, cartoon figures that they be.



In the second one, you have Dishonest John, the tricky dick operator, slick oil man, or "cloaky Victorian" as Willow (a TV witch) might put it, with more allusions to counter-culture beatnikery, in turn affiliated with "modern art" ala cubism, plus "unintelligible" amplified music.



Within the Fuller School, we tend to regard beatniks as prototypical in their fight against "squares". That's because Bucky used to hang out in Greenwich Village with Noguchi & Co., getting loud in bars, until he decided to "dress like a banker" and/or "storekeeper" (so people would take him more seriously -- fashion matters, they say). Plus he was into triangles, not squares, and tetrahedra, not "qyoobs" so heavily.

My thanks to Alan on Synergeo for his scholarship.