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The Modern Myths: Adventures in the Machinery of the Popular Imagination by Philip Ball (2021)

The Modern Myths: Adventures in the Machinery of the Popular Imagination by Philip Ball (2021)

The days when (ancient) myths – be they Greek, Nordic or from whatever region – were rather important to man as they served as guidelines and offered counsel are long gone; or so it seems. Because popular culture has created books, tales and stories that are inhabited by artificial men, werewolves, vampires, ghost hunters or […]

Exploring The Orville: Essays on … by David Kyle Johnson and Michael R. Berry (eds.) (2021)

Exploring The Orville: Essays on … by David Kyle Johnson and Michael R. Berry (eds.) (2021)

In 2017, the first episode of the science-fiction series The Orville premiered on Fox. So far, two seasons of the space adventure show that never denied its relatedness to 1990’s Star Trek, exist. The TV series immediately was described by critics as something between a parody, homage, fan fiction, Star Trek rip-off, and bad copy, […]

Pulp Empire: The Secret History of Comic Book Imperialism by Paul S. Hirsch (2021)

Pulp Empire: The Secret History of Comic Book Imperialism by Paul S. Hirsch (2021)

Comic books as media today would not raise much attention if they featured heavy use of violence or representations of vigilantes who take the law into their own hands. On the contrary, the media now is deeply absorbed into the popular canon of the US. “The comic book, whether in the form of a collectible […]

Projections of Passing: Postwar Anxieties and Hollywood Films, 1947-1960 by N. Megan Kelley (2021)

Projections of Passing: Postwar Anxieties and Hollywood Films, 1947-1960 by N. Megan Kelley (2021)

The debatable term of “passing,” initially used to describe a basically 19th and 20th century strategy of African-Americans to pass for white (and avoid Jim Crow laws, absurd segregationist rules and social exclusion), in the mid- 1950s took on other forms and meanings. Actually, then it depicted new ways of passing/acting out or incorporating somebody […]

The Final Frontier: International Relations and Politics through Star Trek … by Joel R. Campbell & Gigi Gokcek (2019)

The Final Frontier: International Relations and Politics through Star Trek … by Joel R. Campbell & Gigi Gokcek (2019)

Man’s curious nature that powered the exploration of the seas, jungles, and deserts of the planet finally also led him into extraterrestrial territories. However, long before the first satellite or test probe even got close to the moon, other ways of purely fictional exploration were at work. Prominent in the approach to understand and categorize […]

Decorative Art 50s & Decorative Art 60s by Charlotte & Peter Fiell (2021)

Decorative Art 50s & Decorative Art 60s by Charlotte & Peter Fiell (2021)

Decorative Art, a British journal of design, furniture and anything related to modern interiors annually published a Studio Yearbook, beginning in 1906. Taschen now reissued the yearbooks of two decades, collected in separate volumes, here with emphasis on the 1950s and 1960s, respectively. As the original vintage journals are long out of print and hard […]

The Giallo Canvas: Art, Excess and Horror Cinema by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (2021)

The Giallo Canvas: Art, Excess and Horror Cinema by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (2021)

The genre of the “yellow” (in Italian: “giallo”) movie, that roughly surfaced in loud colors since the early 1960s, labels generally Italian productions whose plots as a rule ended badly for the female protagonists, has attracted many fans worldwide. They all appreciate the genre’s blend of tension, thriller elements, usually excellent and highly experimental soundtracks, […]