Unfolding the Unexpressed
The grotesque, norms and repressions
Grotesque images have a unique role in influencing people’s attitudes and cultural valuations, unavoidably shaping our reality.
Devoted to exploring the flourishing grotesque, carnivalesque and abject imagery in contemporary culture, Unfolding the Unexpressed dives into filmic representations of the grotesque body – whether fantastic, monstrous, anti-ideal, caricatural, grotesquely gendered or mutilated.
The book approaches the subject through seven films: Pink Flamingos, Antichrist, Alien: Resurrection, Fight Club, Kill Bill, Satyricon, and The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover. The focus is on slimy monsters, human–animal hybrids and twisted minds; on smashed flesh, excrement and obscenities; on sadistic terror and masochistic enjoyment.
Endeavoring to reveal the hidden within society, the book offers a novel outlook on the grotesque in interaction with cultural norms, taboos and ideals. Intertwined with ideologies and interests of power, the grotesque is highly consequential as regards issues of identity, gender and social difference.
Unfolding the Unexpressed illustrates how representations work through our conscious and unconscious thinking modes, drawing on our fears and fantasies. It illuminates how the grotesque can be used as an efficient tool in visual communication.