Sunday, December 19, 2010

Let a hundred flowers bloom, a hundred schools of snark contend

The above picture is an excellent example of how we like to do things in our graphic novel version of Lewis Carroll's The Hunting of the Snark.

Your eyes do not deceive you. That is Karl Marx on all fours. He is imprisoned in a circus cage. He is impersonating the Banker in Carroll's verse epic.

Why? Do I really need a reason why? Must I explain to you the obvious correlation between Marxism and Carrollian Nonsense?

Do I really have to spell out to you the irresistibly sensuous appeal of an overweight German philosopher romping about on all fours?

But I have a further confession to make; the above picture is the least of the indignities that Karl Marx will suffer in the course of my Snark.

For one thing, he's not wearing any underwear in this drawing. And for the other … well, you'll have to check out my full-blown explanation at MobyLives.

NB. I think someone's instigated a global, internet reading-aloud of the entire Snark. As susual, I'm a bit confused about it, but it looks like fun!


  1. Very appropriate quote. Some of those who followed the advice to let hundred blossoms bloom and did so too openly, met the Boojum. Today the people in that region got smarter and became the masters of nonsense. In such kind of environment that makes lots of sense. Visit their river crab parties.

  2. I am also very interested in China, Goetz. My dream is to study the language , eventually … The grammar is very interesting, from what I have read so far.

    But first, I am trying to improve my German, it is real Nonsense when I speak it now … lächerlich!

  3. As an illustrator, you may want to start with Chinese four-character idioms. You also will like Chinese idioms in geneal. My wife is Chinese, and we are married long enough that I get cautious once she mentions eggs, turtles or 78. And also 38 can be unfriendly: I like the unintentional(?) humor in "sān bā xiàn" (thirty eighth parallel, forming the DMZ border between North and South Korea), which also could be translated as "border of foolishnes" due to sān bā.

  4. Yes, you had mentioned once before that your wife had checked on the use of "xie" as meaning candle-stub or the end of a candle.

    So I think we may have a new Snark theory for the next year: Lewis Carroll was composing the Snark to be later read in chinese, on the 38th parallel!

    Excellent dictionary link, thanks! My dog started barking very loudly!