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Luminol Theory

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ISBN: 9781947447127 9781947447134 Year: Pages: 138 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0177.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Law
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:33
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Representations of forensic procedures saturate popular culture in both fiction and true crime. One of the most striking forensic tools used in these narratives is the chemical luminol, so named because it glows an eerie greenish-blue when it comes into contact with the tiniest drops of human blood. Luminol is a deeply ambivalent object: it is both a tool of the police, historically abused and misappropriated, and yet it offers hope to families of victims by allowing hidden crimes to surface. Forensic enquiry can exonerate those falsely accused of crimes, and yet the rise of forensic science is synonymous with the development of the deeply racist ‘science’ of eugenics. Luminol Theory investigates the possibility of using a tool of the state in subversive, or radical, ways. By introducing luminol as an agent of forensic inquiry, Luminol Theory approaches the exploratory stages that a crime scene investigation might take, exploring experimental literature as though these texts were ‘crime scenes’ in order to discover what this deeply strange object can tell us about crime, death, and history, to make visible violent crimes, and to offer a tangible encounter with death and finitude. At the luminol-drenched crime scene, flashes of illumination throw up words, sentences, and fragments that offer luminous, strange glimpses, bobbing up from below their polished surfaces. When luminol shines its light, it reveals, it is magical, it is prescient, and it has a nasty allure

The Republic of Cthulhu: Lovecraft, the Weird Tale, and Conspiracy Theory

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ISBN: 9780998237565 Year: Pages: 186 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0155.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:35
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If parapolitics, a branch of radical criminology that studies the interactions between public entities and clandestine agencies, is to develop as an academic discipline, then it must develop a coherent theory of aesthetics in order to successfully perform its primary function: to render perceptible extra-judicial phenomena that have hitherto resisted formal classification. Wilson offers the work of H.P. Lovecraft (1890–1937) as an example of the relevance of subversive literature—in this case, cosmic horror and the weird tale—to the parapolitical criminologist. Cosmic horror is a form of writing that relies heavily upon the epistemological assumption of a radical and irreconcilable disjunction between appearance and reality, perception and truth. In many ways, the well-constructed weird tale strongly resembles the hard-boiled detective story or the noir thriller in that the resolution of the narrative hinges upon a dramatically shattering confrontation with an unspeakable reality. Apart from its obvious utilization of conspiracy theory, the primary attraction of the Lovecraftian text lies with its remarkably sophisticated utilization of two central tropes of classical aesthetic theory—the sublime and the grotesque. Not only does Lovecraft’s oeuvre represent a remarkable use of both of these motifs, but the raw literary power of the Lovecraftian weird tale serves as an outstanding exemplar for the parapolitical scholar to emulate in formulating an alternative mode of discourse, or poetics.

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