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Brian D. Earp
Julian Savulescu

Ch a pter 6 ECSTA SY A S TH ER APY a woman with autism, first took Ecstasy in 2007. She was at a party in Sarasota, at the New College of Florida. Using a testing kit she’d bought from an organization named Erowid—a harm-reduction nonprofit that educates people about the risks of psychoactive substances—she confirmed, as best she could, her drug was pure. She swallowed it and waited to see what happened. As she later told a journalist, the disjointed, difficult-to-process jumble of thoughts she’d grown used to, which she attributed to her autism and had

in Love is the Drug
Politico-religious trajectories in pre-revolutionary Syria
Thomas Pierret

Young people’s participation in religious activities in a Muslim context is often seen as a potential antechamber to political engagement. Such a view is not necessarily mistaken, but the relationship can in fact sometimes be the exact opposite: the desire for social and political engagement ultimately leads to a new form of religious practice. Following the trajectory of young Syrian Muslims seeking a religious discourse with a political purchase, or one at least capable of coming to grips with contemporary realities, I will show how this quest led them to join a religious congregation whose real nature as a Sufi brotherhood they only gradually came to discover. Without disregarding the religious nature of this experience, I will also consider its more worldly incidental benefits, that is, the access to relatively elite social networks. The case study discussed in this chapter concerns a group of some hundred young men and women who were followers of Dr Mahmud Abu al-Huda al-Husseini. A general practitioner, born in 1960, Dr al-Husseini was also the preacher at the ‘Adiliyya mosque, an Ottoman edifice in Aleppo’s old souk. Rather than gradually narrowing the focus by beginning with the context, that is the group, and then concentrating on each member’s trajectory, I have chosen the opposite approach, taking the paths followed by individuals as a starting point before examining the features of the group as they become clearer to followers over time.

in Arab youths
Countercultural Blake in the Therapoetic Practice of maelstrÖm reEvolution
Franca Bellarsi

This article explores the reception and transformation of William Blake’s countercultural legacy by focusing on the neo-Romantic resurgences within maelstrÖm reEvolution, an experimental performance and arts collective based in Brussels but with heavy transnational affiliations. In relation to the company’s neo-shamanic and therapeutic conception of poiesis, Blake is an inspirational figure amongst a broader family of mentors ranging from Beat Generation writers to Arthur Rimbaud and Alexandro Jodorowsky. The Blake–maelstrÖm connection is here examined for the first time. Blending classical reception studies with a broader interest in the intersections between poiesis and the ‘sacred’, this article approaches countercultural Blake as the archetypal embodiment of the shamanic poet. More specifically, it reflects on how, as the poet of ‘double-edged madness’ and ‘Spiritual Strife’, Blake’s subversion of alienation into ecstasy feeds maelstrÖm’s own ‘therapoetic’ experimentalism and psycho-aesthetic endeavours to restore the lines of communication between the ‘visible’ and the ‘invisible’.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Robert Ellrodt

lives to a dream are right – perhaps more right than they realized’ (II, xii: 674 B; VS 596). With Shakespeare, the prospect of an inevitable annihilation of the visible universe may be interpreted as a genuine intuition of what might be called a hollow transcendence. 166  Montaigne and Shakespeare Both Montaigne and Shakespeare, however, had an intuition of a full transcendence through the poetic function of language, which by itself can induce the aesthetic ecstasy through which, as Schopenhauer will claim, ‘subject and object escape from time’s whirlwind’.96 It

in Montaigne and Shakespeare
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Trudi Tate

works; indeed, literature is one of the key ways in which the war was written as history. Modernism's contribution to these processes is still inadequately understood, but it seems to me that it has had an important influence, right up to the present day, on the ways in which our culture remembers-and forgets-the Great War, and the fantasies we continue to invest in it. One strange fantasy found in some of these stories casts the war as a source of sexual ecstasy, especially for women; we might interpret Kipling's 'Mary Postgate' or Sinclair's 'Red Tape' in these

in Women, Men and the Great War
An anthology of stories

Around seventy million people were mobilized in the Great War; more than nine million of them died. Historians often describe it as the world's first industrial war, which drew upon advanced technology to produce unimaginable new forms of violence and suffering. The Great War ended in 1918; many people rarely think about it now, yet it had a profound effect on politics, economics, and social organization, not simply in Europe, but all over the world. This book presents a collection of stories from the Great War to bring together writing by women and men, combatants and civilians, pacifists and propagandists, giving a broad sense of the war's cultural impact. One strange fantasy found in some of these stories casts the war as a source of sexual ecstasy, especially for women. To some extent, anxiety about the war's violence is displaced on to women, and expressed as fear or hatred of women's sexuality. All the stories in this anthology are complete texts; none has been abridged. This allows us to explore the ways in which the war is turned into a form of history, as well as aestheticized, within the constraints of a single genre. Overall, the book attempts to give a sense of the breadth of the cultural impact of the war - an impact which can still be felt today, both in the political climate in which we live, and in the kinds of literature we produce.

David Scott

In 1995, at a birthday party in Bristol, eighteen-year-old Leah Betts took an ecstasy tablet and drank approximately seven litres of water within a ninety-minute period. Shortly afterwards she fell into a coma from which she would not recover. Leah’s death sparked a controversial new anti-drugs campaign when the family gave the press a harrowing photo of her. Ecstasy, a

in Mancunians
Peter William Evans

. While this chapter will conclude, out of chronological sequence, with a detailed commentary of Trapeze , which I consider an unjustly neglected film, preliminary remarks on The Key, The Running Man and The Agony and the Ecstasy will, I hope, demonstrate that even what are on balance rightly considered flawed films contain many remarkable moments. The Last Warrior (1970) and Follow Me brought his career to an end with

in Carol Reed
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Andy Spinoza

groups. Manchester is a blinder of a booze city, and it can be judged somewhere on the spectrum from harmless relaxation all the way through to personal addiction and social damage. During the spring and summer of 1988, however, thousands of young people stopped drinking alcohol as black-and-white lives turned technicolour. What might have formerly been a night out getting plastered had become an intense, supercharged experience, thanks to a new mood-enhancing illegal Class A drug. Ecstasy was the street name for

in Manchester unspun
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Scott Wilson

folk song or country music, but for the occasion of dancing – a frantic and sometimes violent mode of dancing, headbanging and moshing. Extreme heavy metal is essentially live music that generates an intense experience outside the home, outside the clubs and the malls, at extreme volume. In the mosh pit, beneath the ‘hell-hop polydrumming and nail-bomb showers of soprano-drone guitar and sampled squeal’ (Udo, 2002: 127), Slipknot’s audience are a mass of swarming maggots writhing in ecstasy. Slipknot themselves are noted for their high-energy, frenzied yet ritualised

in Great Satan’s rage