Mar 12 2018 09:16 pm

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Post #4: Ideological Criticism and Peer Responses


Kill Your Darlings: I chose this scene from Kill Your Darlings, starring Daniel Radcliffe, as my artifact. The movie is based on the early life of Beat writer, Allen Ginsberg, and his involvement with Lucien Carr. Radcliffe portrays Ginsberg as a shy, but adventurous young man who hopes to do something extraordinary with his life. Lucien Carr, a troubled classmate, takes Ginsberg under his wing. The movie also tackles Ginsberg’s sexuality and the trial of Lucien Carr.

Presented Elements: In this scene, one of Ginsberg’s professors is stressing the importance of throwing away any conceived idea of writing, and to stick to what had already been established. Ginsberg challenges him, and is refuted. We see Carr also in the classroom, looking bored, but taking interest in Ginsberg’s question. The professor is not open to hearing Ginsberg, and continues to push his curriculum of only using rhyme and meter.

Suggested Elements: One suggested element is that Ginsberg is beginning to pave his own way. He has started to doubt that the old ways are absolute, which will lead him to writing his New Vision manifesto. Another is that old equals outdated and that it is time for a change. There is another suggested element that Carr implies when taking interest in Ginsberg’s comments. We can see from his interest that while the old ways are boring to him, challenging those old ideas and creating a ‘new vision’ is appealing.

IdeologiesThis scene represents two ideologies: absolutism, which is preached by the professor, and liberalism, which Ginsberg argues for. Absolutism stresses the importance of tradition and order, while Liberalism argues for freedom, individualism, and progress.


2 Responses to “Post #4: Ideological Criticism and Peer Responses”

  1. Karyn Keane says:

    It’s apparent from this scene that the film has created a division between “old” and “new” forms of poetic creation. It reminds me a lot of the film Dead Poets Society in this sense, because both films criticize older scholars for their inflexibility. I haven’t seen the entire film, but I’m assuming that by arguing for liberalism through poetry, Ginsberg also argues for it with regard to his sexuality?

    • Savannah Dyer says:

      I hadn’t thought about it, but I think that assumption is correct. The movie shows Ginsberg making a lot of choices based on what he feels is right for him. That includes challenging the old ways and because his sexuality is such an important part of the movie I’m sure that his arguments include it. If you haven’t seen it, I would definitely recommend it. I watched it for Daniel Radcliffe and I wasn’t expecting it to be as good as it was. It’s become one of my top five favorite movies!