6lecture1780salome09SU - Lecture 6 Clements 1 School of...

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Lecture 6 Clements 1 School of Arts and Letters, Atkinson Faculty of Liberal and Professional Studies Summer 2009 AK/HUMA 1780 6.0A Stories in Diverse Media Announcements : ¾ The Discussion Rooms should be up and running tomorrow. Please see the Protocol posted along with this lecture to begin when the time comes. ¾ I have posted a short excerpt for you in the Readings folder . Please read it before next Thursday in addition to George Shaw’s play, Pygmalion . The Femme Fatale Proliferates: Visual Representations of Salome Today we're going to look at the paintings of two artists from the same time period as Oscar Wilde, Gustav Moreau and Gustav Klimt. I will discuss Richard Strauss’s opera Salome next Monday when we examine the movie Fatal Attraction (our example of a contemporary femme fatale ). But first, another contemporary example of the use of this ancient story with the help of CSI Las Vegas . Funnily enough a few years ago in the season opener the encyclopedic-minded Gil Grisham mentions the story of Salome in reference to one of the cases they investigate. A woman hires a hit-man to kill some person to whom she owes money then asks him to take a picture so that she can verify that he is dead. Grisham mentions that this is like the story of Salome because Salome wanted proof that J the B was dead and so asked for his head on a silver platter. There are a few things about this mention of the Princess that are interesting in terms of the ideas in the course: first, it shows us that the version of the story to which the show is referring is actually Wilde's play, and even more likely, Strauss's opera. People who know anything about the character usually know it from the opera rather than
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Lecture 6 Clements 2 Wilde's play, which is rarely performed. We know it is this version because Grisham does not mention the fact that Salome's mother asks for the head on a silver platter, not her daughter. Secondly, in Grisham's use of the story he emphasizes what is important to the show. What's the central focus of the show? What's one of the main things at which we're supposed to marvel? Why is Grisham "heroic"? Because he's a scientist who would never convict someone without the forensic backing of the evidence. We know that the notion of science and "truth" are central to the show because of all of the (not so subtle) comments that the characters make: "the evidence doesn't lie" or "we'll find the truth in the evidence." We also know that the "truth" is important to the show from those somewhat long montage sequences in the lab when we watch the experts evaluating or discovering the importance of the evidence they have so meticulously gathered in little envelopes and vials with long Q-tips. These sequences are accompanied by nondiegetic music—some hip tune in the background that is not actually sounding in the lab (it is for the viewers’ ears only). So not only are we supposed to admire the abilities of these scientists, but we are also supposed to think they are "cool" for having this particular
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This note was uploaded on 04/11/2010 for the course HUMA 1780 taught by Professor Eliciaclements during the Summer '09 term at York University.

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6lecture1780salome09SU - Lecture 6 Clements 1 School of...

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