Thursday, 30 March 2006

The Insurgent

The Insurgent, a magazine published by University of Oregon students, has printed twelve cartoons of Jesus, in reaction to the dozen Mohammed cartoons printed last year. The two most controversial of the Jesus cartoons both feature Christ with an erection. Distribution of the magazine's current issue has been suspended by the University.

Tumescent Christs have caused artistic controversies before, including a Belgian sculptor's prosecution for blasphemy in 1988. Also, Danish artist Jens Jorgen Thorsen painted a tumescent Christ on the wall of a railway station in 1984. JAM Montoya's 1997 photograph El Ultimo Deseo depicts Christ with an erection. A series of three paintings (Man Of Sorrows, circa 1530) by Maaten van Heemskerck depict Christ in a similar state, as discussed in Leo Steinberg's book The Sexuality Of Christ In Renaissance Art & In Modern Oblivion.

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Sunday, 5 March 2006

The Sheaf

The Sheaf
Will Robbins, editor-in-chief of the University of Saskatchewan's newspaper The Sheaf, has resigned following publication of a cartoon featuring Jesus and a pig. The cartoon, titled Capitalist Piglet, was published on 2nd March. The University has censured the newspaper and demanded an apology.

Wednesday, 1 March 2006

Balderdash & Piffle

Balderdash & Piffle
Balderdash & Piffle, a BBC2 TV series about the etymologies of unusual words from the Oxford English Dictionary, accompanied by appeals for evidence of antedating, was broadcast in January. Although the whole series was quirky and interesting, most fascinating for me was Germaine Greer's exploration of one word in particular (The C-Words, 30th January), in which she unfortunately reversed her earlier calls for the word to be normalised.