“The Wild Boys Smile”:Reflections on Olaf Stapledon’s Odd John, Part 2

[1]William S. Burroughs with the hint of a smile

5,047 words

Part 2 of 3 (part 1 here [2])

Alan Watts’ notion of “fascinating ugliness” leads us to another important theme is the disquieting or even repulsive “beauty” of John and his kind. Here is Jacqueline:

But though passably ‘human,’ according to the standards of Homo sapiens, she was strange. Were I an imaginative writer, and not merely a journalist, I might be able to suggest symbolically something of the almost “creepy” effect she had on me, something of its remote and sleepy power. As it is I can only record certain obvious features, and in general that curious combination of the infantile, or even the foetal, with the mature. The protruding brow, the short broad...

Contains Mention
Jan 5th 2019
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