Friday, December 02, 2005

All About Eve

Okay, Camille Paglia has finally weighed in on Madonna's new album- she thinks it's pretty weak for disco music. Actually, our friend Simon thinks the same of it.

Actually, as usual, her own phrasing is much more entertaining than my own...

Through her fusion of Graham primitivism with Italian Catholic ritualism, Madonna caught the pagan majesty of disco and embodied it in a stunning body of original compositions that conquered the world and have never gone out of airplay.

My blood boiled at this insulting reduction of dance music to gymnastics -- mere recreational aerobics. I for one do not dance to dance music; disco for me is a lofty metaphysical mode that induces contemplation.

And so forth... My favorite comment ever about Paglia was Gore Vidal's comment on seeing her speak that Myra Breckinridge had escaped from his book!

As usual, most of the Salon letter writers snark on Camille for having run out her 15 minutes, an accusation that's followed her for the last 14 years, by my count. Actually, the public also says Madonna has run our her 15 minutes every time she sneezes (and then, as tradition dictates, issues a press release)! Why are we so obsessed with every famous person "becoming a has-been" anyway? But, both Camille and Madonna keep running, like the Energizer rabbits of gay culture, their robotic skeletons driving them ever forward. After the apocalypse, I can imagine something like the end of a Terminator film, with Robo-Madonna and Robo-Paglia fighting to the death, the rest of humanity reduced to termite-like servileness. Does anyone else see that?

Oh, but who cares? Camille's an American original, (like Madonna, incidentally, who is, of course, the greater artist, but never a great thinker), a deeply silly one, sure, but there aren't many left! Besides, what people don't get is that both Madonna and Camille know they're silly- something their vehement critics can't be accused of.

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