Parody, Always Nice

Egalitarianism + Perversity? Healthy and Biting Sarcasm? General Mockery? If you enjoy all of these things (at once) as much as we here at Perverse Egalitarianism do, then be sure to have a look at The Cultural Parody Center. We applaud your blogging etiquette and your contribution to the development of new forms of cultural theory.

The Cultural Parody Center have announced their Parody Oscar Nominations for 2007:

Most Pretentious Blawg of The Year

The Poetry Sewer (

For overdosing on neoRomanticism; for maintaining Oxford-branded snobbery whilst having no sense of humor whatsoever.

The Unmarxist Unsupernanny (

For his insidious attempts to throw rivals into the syntaxic grid. For inspiring blog debates without having the guts to lose them.

The Decapitated (

For selling word salads as high-culture literary theory.

Worst Evangelical Nerd Blawg of The Year

Code Poetics Inconnu ( for openly admitting to Le Sherbert that he is a bottom and a nerd; for channeling divine energies through the Action Script

Adamina’s eternal theology students ( for spreading a nerdy variant of Christian fundamentalism; for supporting dr. Zizek’s Christian fundamentalism

I must be somebody else ( for putting up his nerdy bottom in defense of Adamina’s blawg

Read the rest here

36 thoughts on “Parody, Always Nice

  1. Oh, Mikhail. Maybe, just maybe you are correct, but come on, by its very definition one still has to imitate in order to ridicule/satirize and/or entertain for it to be parody, it’s not natural, say, like sarcasm.

    At any rate, one has to admire their commitment…

  2. i’m with you on the dedication factor, shahar – i think just typing all those “comments” to one’s own post would be exhausting – still i’m not sure what exactly is being parodied.

    joseph, they (or maybe he, i do have a suspicion that it might be just one person) seem to have a special love for you, don’t they? how did you manage to piss the parodists off?

    i guess i’m all for parody and silliness if only to keep our very serious selves from taking themselves too seriously, but good parody is hard to come by these days…

  3. The mission of new parody must be to prevent capitalism from using the post-modern type of parody that it managed to appropriate from queer theory. Self-referential, ”ironic” or ”sarcastic” parody is ineffective. This is why we are really serious, delirious and obsessive about resenting our targets, like Dr. Slovenly Zizek.

    My parody correspondent Jonquille de Camembert has more experience with dr. Kugelmass and the Poetry Sewer than I do, so queries in this regard should be directed to him.

    Dr. Kugelmass alternately strikes me as a gentle soul and a snob, the boundary is blurred between the two. I have serious problems with his recent review of Ratatouille. But he is certainly among the braver academics in the blawgosphere, for he once tried to parody us as well as publishing a lame criticism of dr. Zizek.

    With compliments from the Parody Center.

  4. Parody Center, i don’t know much about any of the people you mention, but as a gentle soul and a snob myself, i have to say that the charge of elitism is as old as time and i do not really see how it is even a bit offensive – i personally embrace elitism and snobbery, and pretension, i almost forgot pretension…

    as per the task of parody, i might say that, without necessarily attempting to offend any contributors on your fine blog, i am not sure i can see through to the matter that is being exposed and parodied – and i’m not sure your comment is an explanation of your parody or parody itself – a parody of a parody?

  5. Most of my parody targets are in some way associated with the teachings of dr. Slovenly Zizek and a certain Lacanian-Platonic-Hegellian-evangelical school of thinking in cultural and literary theory. A typical example would be the theory of the dekline of simbolik efikasy, according to which the world is suffering from the flaccidity of dr. Zizek’s member. I think this type of thinking is preventing the Western academia from seeing into the crimes perpetrated by their capitalist governments, some of which – being an ex-citizen of Yugoslavia- I was able to feel on my own skin.

    I am also frequently attacking elitism as a barrier to communication with the Eastern world (esp. Russia and Eastern Europe); the Western academia as represented by these types of theoreticians is embarrassingly ignorant about things that happen across the proverbial Berlin Wall.

    What I meant to say about the purpose of the parody is that it’s SERIOUSLY meant to expose bullshit, instead of being intended as a self-referential loop, or the parody of a parody as you say, mere entertainment for the masses, a populist joy.

  6. For example, Pixar’s Ratatouille is the type of Western cultural product that steals abundantly from superior Eastern European works (in this case, Jan Svankmajer) but plugs the politically subversive themes from those works into Disneyesque tropes and then makes a ton of money; and though it appropriates the themes, it doesn’t develop them – instead it offers self-congratulatory nonsense for Western theoreticians (”are critics and artists working together, or are they apart”).

  7. i liked Ratatouille actually but in any case, as always i’m late to this discussion – i think parody is a bit of a parasitical art, but good parody is amost indistinguishable from the real thing unless one has an interpretative key which, it seems to me, is a kind of elitism – only a few select can understand and appreciate good parody – i don’t see how this is different from “regular” elitism… but i’m with Mikhail here on the value of elitism: i think higher education is too readily available for the masses, i long to leave in the past when only a few could read and write!

  8. but good parody is amost indistinguishable from the real thing unless one has an interpretative key which, it seems to me, is a kind of elitism – only a few select can understand and appreciate good parody

    I agree with you there, but my audience does know what’s happening because I am parodying their blogs – admittedly this might be difficult to understand for people who come in without knowing my side of the blogosphere

    I think imitation is a crucial part in the sense which dr. Sinthome explained here:

    (I tried to do something very similar in ”The Slovenly Alien”)

    i think higher education is too readily available for the masses, i long to leave in the past when only a few could read and write!

    you didn’t explain WHY though; the question is really HOW available is higher education to masses when Western schools have turned into amusement parks for all I can see, recruitment offices for multinationals

    It’s not really a question of liking or disliking Ratatouille. Who could really dislike talking rats? Animation has magic outside of any ideological concerns. But you see Ratatouille clones this theme from Jan Svankmajer, of the animator as a ”reanimator” – he who brings creatures back from death to eternal life. Animated creations are like embodiments of Lacan’s Death Drive. And this is present in Ratatouille as well, in that part of the movie which deals with the rat pulling the hair of the human (it could be the plot of Svankmajer;s latest film LUNACY). But unlike Svankmajer, who delivered a biting satire of present-day neoliberal fascism in that film, Ratatouille’s political conclusion is a kind of a Disneyesque Communism – Bambi – as the director concludes that you see, even an elitist snob like Ego will ultimately cave in to Real Talent and American democracy shall triumph. If I now have to explain why I find that totally reactionary, then I’m afraid we speak completely different languages.

  9. Yes, we’re becoming famous, as well we should! And we’ll pay Arpege not one penny or milligram despite providing much of the best material and sweeping virtually all the awards….I didn’t comment over there, because I think they definitely mistake our parodying Mrs. Kugelmass as affection rather than yeomanry. Why, he’s only been interesting when he became another Zizek bottom recently! More surprising was Roman Puchanski surprising bottom-outing which I performed several weeks ago at Dr. Fossey’s highly patient blawg…

    I like Mikhail’s insistence on snobbery and elitism although it may only get him a Fred Astaire-type escort for old dowagers than a serious sweathog workout…Why they expect us to explain any of it to them, or that we’d give a fuck that it’s ‘parasitic’ is beyond me. Pure Art such as ours needs only worship, no criticism and no analysis, to paraphrase Dyke Beauty Gertrude Stein…Of course, Acephalous decided to put us in our places after pretending to honour us, because it is obvious that he likes any attention better than none at all…In the meantime, darling fellow genius Dejan–if our gracious hosts will bear with us, we like to converse in public with many voyeurs looking on–you will already notice new pathologies fissuring out of Arpege…I mean, even lenininino, ridiculous buffoon that he is, understood the Chavez referendum had its disadvantages…whereas Arpege simply had nothing at all to do for THREE SOLID WEEKS, so she wrote a whole Fairy Tale Book about ‘How Zizek Bought Out Swing Voters in Venezuela in the Most Important Referendum in all of History!’ For awhile, I thought Chavez was running against somebody else–I mean this time, not other times. I hope Arpege has a quick recovery, because I’ve given up Childie for Lost in Academia. (This is a concept that David Lynch may have to explore…)

  10. Most of my parody targets are in some way associated with the teachings of dr. Slovenly Zizek and a certain Lacanian-Platonic-Hegellian-evangelical school of thinking in cultural and literary theory.

    Truer words have never been said about me. His aim is true. So very, very true.

    Of course, Acephalous decided to put us in our places after pretending to honour us…

    It’s called “parody,” a concept I assume you have some passing familiarity with. (But I’ve been wrong before.)

  11. “It’s called “parody,” a concept I assume you have some passing familiarity with.”

    Daaaoon’t be saaaaoo sledge-hammuh, Chahles….you are one of the ones who needs a lot of work on niceities….even Childie is far more refined…

  12. last night i deleted the last comment from Parody Center because it was directed at SEK and was poorly worded with all kinds of rude remarks – now i’ve been accused of being a dick myself and i’m all for rudeness, but in this case none of us were the targets and i felt it would be unfair to SEK to keep the abusive comment – guys from CPC know SEK’s blog so i say if you want to abuse someone, do it directly – that was my logic last night…

  13. Mikhail, since your anal desires will have to be frustrated for the moment, we can resume the parody discussion.

    In essence, what I was trying to explain is that I think capitalism successfully appropriated post-modern irony of the sort found in Dr. Zizek’s work, it is now very much de rigeur and part of the mainstream, so if one is to think up new satirical strategies to combat the ruling system, I believe one is well-advised to go the way of queer theory, to attempt to formulate representations that are neither here nor there, mobile, in flux… this already sounds Deleuzian I’m sure you realize; the other tradition I draw on is political animation from the Zagreb school of cartoons, which exploited the unique moment of political freedom in the old Yugoslavia to deliver mind-blowing satire that has never been repeated thereafter in the West. This is the more important part: this satire wasn’t afraid to attack its enemies, it was dead serious about its goals to annihilate them, and the authors weren’t afraid of going to prison. If at least one part of that subversive mentality is recaptured, we might have some hope of challenging the system.

  14. But the ”open your ass” slogan wasn’t really an expletive, because in a way I am searching for something impossible – the male non-genital orgasm – a discourse that resists all attempts at definition – as well as giving the whole thing an anal-obsessive dimension in the psychoanalytic sense of the word, as a protest, as a refusal to cooperate. The more they tell me to shit in the potty, the more I want to shit next to it. This is what my brilliant parody correspondent de Camembert meant when he said that parody IS anal sex.

  15. Mikhail, darling, it is not PURELY anal sex, because I won’t allow only one kind of Kama Sutra position to dominate the field. On the other hand, I am amused at your use of the ‘faeces’ spelling, and I myself may wish to go around parading its use…

  16. i really do not see how “parody is anal sex” or “refusal to cooperate” – parody clearly depends on that which it parodies, it does shit in a certain relation to the potty, if you will.

    the point is that you never know in which PARTICULAR relation to the potty it shits – audiences have to be kept on the edge of their seats, rubbing their asshole against it, as it were.

    also there needs to be a refusal, an obsessive one, persistent, as strong as the Death Drive.

    paco is that the painter, whose name escapes me, on your icon, Bacon or something, whose designs inspired HR Giger for the Alien?

  17. “faeces” is how they spell it in good old england – it looks very Latin this way and thus very harmless…

    Faeces is harmless unless you eat it. There’s nothing ‘good’ about ‘old England’, except I love it anyway. You need a more subtle kind of snobbism for advertisement, and just exude the Brittisms, because they are too popular to go unnoticed and unmocked, as in the case when upper-middle-class Americans go to Junior Year Abroad in London and come back with those fake accents. But I, too, prefer some of the British spellings, as all the ‘-ours’, e.g., colours, and also ‘practising’ is prettier than ‘practicing’. Same as single quotes are more elegant most of the time than regular ones. Lyotard used them a lot, as in ‘Libidinal Economy.’

  18. Mikhail, thank you for including the Cultural parody center on the blawgroll. To prove that we are a generous cultural center, I might even consider putting Acephalous on our own blawgroll!

  19. I think I speak for everyone when I say that I added the ‘dynamic duo’ over at the Cultural Parody Center to the blogroll.

    Does American pop icon Madonna still have a fake British accent?

  20. Thank you, Paco, we deserved it, as Shirley MacLaine said when she won the Oscah (she sort of did).

    I’m sure Madonna still has fake British when she can remember to. Otherwise, there may be an Israeli accent she can work on for her Jewish Mysticism, or a corporate automated system accent for her awful shows with the S&M pigs.

  21. Los Angeles accent (whatever that would be, watered down and sun bleached New Yawkese?)…

    Sometimes it is, in the Industry talk, which is usually faster than in New York, but then it usually is not a sonic thing, but more a matter of the more generalized American cosmopolitan accents that have little regional character any more. Los Angeles accents in the old sense are very Western with a drawl such as you hear up to Oregon, it’s very spacious in a cornball way. On the other hand, so many New Yorkers have moved to L.A., you do hear plenty of actual New York accents anyway. Madonna wouldn’t know what a real Los Angeles accent was, and her attention span is very poor, she doesn’t even remember that she was stalked at her house on Wonder View Drive and said ‘I don’t need to live in Los Angeles anymore.’ She’s the sort that likes to advertise her every slight whim and change of mind, and lives in Los Angeles whenever it’s time to try to use that too. Ignoble ‘artist.’ Has talent, but all of it’s crude, not just some of it. I remember in the 80s when she tried to look like Marilyn Monroe and it came out looking more like Jan Sterling. She was an extremely destructive force in culture, and I’m surprised there’s been a recovery from it, instead of mere replicas of her extreme mediocrity.

  22. Pingback: Zizek’s Bottoms « American Stranger

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