• Home
  • About
  • Guest Post

    Behind the filthy medieval rag

    Like most very fascinating people, Oriana Fallaci can be infuriating; but she’s been decrying Islamofascism for years. (She’s the journalist who, during an audience with Khomeini, yanked off the hood of her chador and called it a “filthy medieval rag.”) And it says something that there’s an Italian curator who thinks that this is a meaningful piece of art to offer audiences.

    One doesn’t want art to be making pat points that can be summarized in a single sentence–for that, you can just, like, write a single sentence–but a certain coherence, even if it’s at the dream level, would be nice. Does Fallaci symbolize American decadence because she now lives in New York? Does the painter think she’s done things to deserve beheading? Or are we just being [yawn] transgressive again, throwing grapeshot around and hoping that some of it strikes a target that people will find worth talking about? What Fallaci’s fierce, knowing gaze–which the artist has at least depicted with a simple immediacy that shows he’s not an empty set technically–has to do with weakness and perversity, I’m afraid I cannot imagine. Of course, it’s redundant to point out that Americans are not being given instructions to demonstrate outside the nearest Italian diplomatic building (unless my latest e-mail from the US embassy has been held up–you know, watch it when traveling, no update on threats of terrorism in Japan, don’t forget to do your taxes, here’s how to renew your passport by mail, bring Italian flags to Mita for burning on Sunday).

    Leave a Reply