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From:   IN%"[log in to unmask]"  "Benjamin Leontief Alpers" 22-MAR-1993 18:26:
   31.87
To:     IN%"[log in to unmask]"  "Jeff Clark"
CC:
Subj:   The Crying Game
 
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Date: 22 Mar 1993 15:08:36 -0500 (EST)
From: Benjamin Leontief Alpers <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: The Crying Game
To: Jeff Clark <[log in to unmask]>
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Jeff,
 
Just mailing this to you because I'm responding to a fairly old message and
I don't know how interested the rest of the list is at this point.  Feel
free to post this if you think it bears further circulation . . .
 
I actually more or less agree with your analysis of Jordan's attempted use of
the frog and scorpion story.  However . . . it all seems a little obvious
to me, and - with the possible phallic, symbolism of the scorpion's sting -
the relation of the story to Fergus/Dil's situation seems a little strained.
More importantly, the Great Secret of _The Crying Game_ is most definitely
about sexual orientation and gender identity, while the whole frog/scorpion
story is about identity at such a high level of generality that it neatly
sidesteps these issues.  Ask yourself the following:  what if Dil had ended
up being a black, English woman (i.e. still from a different world, still
psychologically bound up to her former boyfriend for whose death Fergus
feels responsible, etc.)  Wouldn't the frog/scorpion story still apply just
as well?  However, _The Crying Game_ would be more obviously what I'm afraid
it is,a film about the much more standard questions of soldiers (in this case
broadly defined) on and off the front and how people reconcile their role
as killers-for-a-cause with their human attachments.  Perhaps the theme can
be stated to be more broadly about identities (even within one person)
clashing with eachother.  However, this theme, at least
in the way _The Crying Game_ deals with it, has nothing to do with Dil's
equipment.
 
-- Ben Alpers