Now, an even more swaggering and self-congratulating HM il mect les mains sur les deux costez comme orgueilleux et dit … is honoured by a song and dance routine, organised by Honneur Mondain, round the base of the wheel:. In addition to incorporating the concept of free will into their dramas, our playwrights are quick to develop other elements of the Boethian influence, particularly those that can be externalized dramatically to reinforce the message.
The most obvious of these is perhaps the use of costume and costume-change. This association of Fortune with significant clothing, seen clearly in some of the illustrations of her wheel, is also exploited by Simon Bourgoing in HJHM , a play which combines dual journey metaphor with elaborate psychomachia.
In this sorry state he will be delivered into the hands of Desesperance and Malle Fin. Significantly perhaps, it is only in the dual-action plays that Fortune figures: in HP, for example, she does not appear at all. This contrast indeed lies at the heart of the structure of the two surviving plays in which Fortune appears.
- Wheeling and Dealing.
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By exploiting the thematic and pictorial commonplaces of Fortune the playwrights were able successfully to enhance their religious message. He is thus, as Helmich has pointed out p. In such episodes as these the essential penitential lesson can be said to transcend the standard imagery. There is little need to dwell here on the appeal of gambling scenes in a wide variety of medieval comico-realist texts, particularly those dealing with tavern transgression and its associated thematics.
There is moreover in the gambling motif a close link with Fortune who, as Boethius points out, often parades her fickle power as a game, exalting mankind and then casting him down at her whim. That games and gambling were so roundly condemned by both civil and ecclesiastical authorities is a clear indication of their widespread popularity across the social spectrum, particularly in the later Middle Ages.
Much of the information in the important work by J. Lack of space prevents a detailed analysis here, but the following is an attempt at a brief typology of such gambling sequences.
In HJHM an extended game of cards takes place pp. Here again, the precise nature of the game is unclear, but as they cut the cards to see who is to start p. It is important that such scenes should represent real moral threats, and that the audience should understand who are the winners and who are the losers.
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This is why there is also much numerical precision in the stakes involved cf. The detail is necessarily plausible, but the essential focus is on the players — on their accusations, arguments and indignant protests, certainly — but mainly on their inevitable fate when they risk their souls in such dice-games from Hell. One of the means of externalising this is to have the loser dice away even his clothes, the attendant stage-business often highlighting a stark contrast between sartorial excess and sudden nakedness.
Clothes indeed are closely associated with both motifs examined in this paper. In HJHM scenes of open sexual dalliance follow quickly on from the card-game cf. Reduced to naked penury by Tromperie, Homme Mondain, will need clothes and money to make his come-back on the Wheel of Fortune, and which he will acquire from Avarice, Usure, and Simonie. Such books also condemned gambling for its incitement to blasphemy, a danger to which the frequent squabbles and violent brawling — also a common motif — inevitably gave rise.
In the context of the morality play allegory it is naturally the deeper religious symbolism of the gambling scenes that was most intended to impinge upon audiences. In the moralities, whenever the Everyman figure rolls his dice he is the inevitable loser since his opponents are the deadly sins or other related vices, and thus the embodiment evil.
Title: Damnation Alley
Similar associations are clear in the iconography of medieval gaming: a 13 th -century sketch by Villard de Honnecourt, depicts two semi-naked dice-players facing each other across the gaming board. At least two of the covers are the work of Moebius, rare examples of him being commissioned outside the comics medium.
The other notable aspect of the imprint is the books themselves which are an odd mix of the outrageous and sexually provocative end of SF spectrum, together with more usual fare. Several of these titles appeared as SF in the s because of other work by their authors despite there being nothing overtly science fictional about The Atrocity Exhibition or Breakfast in the Ruins.
Une Saison en Enfer
Every so often I wonder whether any of these books or books like them would be offered to, or accepted by, genre publishers today. As usual, if anyone can supply information about the missing illustrators then please leave a comment. Illustration by Jean-Claude Castelli. Illustration by Jacques Tardi. The first PKD one is a bit bizarre as the novel is a bout a simulacrum that looks like Abraham Lincoln.
They should add it to this collection of book covers for it at. I used to have the DAW edition which at least has a Lincoln simulacrum on the cover not a Hitler one. That Tarzan Alive cover is just a Hogarth panel cut out and stuck onto a red backing, surely? Always liked those covers…. Strangely enough the cover actually has a high castle on it. Chute Libre science fiction Aug 23,