A Review: On Tarzan By Alex Vernon

November 13, 2009

 

A Review:

On Tarzan

by

Alex Vernon

Review by R.E. Prindle

Vernon, Alex: On Tarzan, 2008, UGeorgia Press

 

     This book reads almost like the cover of The Doors LP Strange Days.  You’ve entered into some kind of literary twilight zone.  This is perhaps the most eccentric book I’ve ever read.  I can’t believe it was actually published- and by a University press!

     Alex Vernon has a PhD and is an Associate Professor at Hendrix College.  Must have been founded by Jimi before he OD’d.  I’m flabbergasted that the guy has a  job.  Average looking Joe from the back cover.  Happy, smiling.  Doesn’t look like he’d be sex obsessed  but it could be a problem for him.

     The phallus on the cover dismayed me but prepared me for the sex driven content.  Zany, zany, zany.  A large phallus rises out of what might be the swamp, symbol of the female, or perhaps jungle growth meant to represent pubic hair.

     When Vernon says On Tarzan he doesn’t mean Tarzan by Edgar Rice Burroughs he means Tarzan as a ‘living’ entity to which history Burroughs is only one contributor albeit an important one,  Philip Jose Farmer almost eclipses Burroughs as a contributor to the Tarzan ethos in Vernon’s mind.  Mainly for Farmer’s outrageous sex episodes.

     Tarzan ethos is about it.  Everything is thrown indiscriminately into the stew pot.  Books, movies, TV shows, articles, even artefacts, Tarzan underwear.  Vernons says he interviewed Bill Hillman at ERBzine although it is difficult to find what he gleaned from the conversation, wait a minute, maybe the reference to the 1893 Columbian Expo.  Bill was probably hot on that topic.

     As literary critic Vernon doesn’t so much analyze as create.  He uses Tarzan body parts from various books and films to create his own monster, and his Tarzan is monstrous.

     As I say he uses his sources as though making a stew; mixing them up to creat a sex driven Tarzan that no twelve year would recognize as his hero.

     Vernon doesn’t seem able to distinguish the motives, the agendas of the various sources who are projecting their own inner world on Tarzan such as Bo and John Derek in their vision of  The Big Bwana.  I didn’t say Banana; I said Bwana.  Melding these sources doesn’t create a ‘biographical composite’ of Tarzan that all can agree on; it is merely the projection of Vernon’s own inner psyche.

      Apparently Vernon’s approach is a valid historical literary criticism technique in today’s academic environment.  It’s not what you say but who you say it about.  As I say it goes beyond interpretation or revisionism into creating an alternate universe.

     The approach intrigued me.  In that spirit I offer my own creation of Tarzan and a revisionist/creation of history.  In the view of facts as they might be construed by a fanatic with an agenda I offer Tarzan as an agent of  Globalism serving as the first viceroy of Africa.

     Mr. Vernon keeps talking about a colonial period as if such a thing has ever existed.  His professors must have been from the stone age.  As advanced thinkers know what these prehistoric monsters refer to as colonialism was in reality the early stages of what is now recoginized as Globalism.  This how Globalism began. In the very early stages all cultures were relatively distinct, living in separate well defined areas.  The Chinese were in China, Africans were in Africa, Europeans were in Europe.  Further relatively internal distinct sub-divisions can be made on all continents.  It was clear to the most primitive minds, well, actually European primitive minds, that what was needed to…well for whatever reason they had…to make the world a more secure place was Globalism.  Wars were anathema but one couldn’t create Globalism without some really destructive wars so they forged fearlessly ahead secure in the purity of their intentions.  This posited the problem of bringing together in most cases people who didn’t know other cultures even existed, those ‘lesser races outside the law.’

     As I say Europeans were then and are now the promoters of the cause of Globalism.  It’s good for people and it’s good for  the Global Money Trust.  Initially Europe sent out ships and explorers to the four corners of the Earth.  In that far off, almost once upon a, time unlike today local populations were hostile to what they mistakenly called invaders.  Sometimes their resistance involved military force, in other words war; so in self-defense it was necessary to mow the heathens down.  We had screw guns and maxims and they didn’t.  Rather foolish on their part while causing Globalists a great deal of emotional distress.  Almost had a nervous breakdown.  It could have been avoided.  Globalists only wanted peace if they had understood.

     Gradually the peoples of the world learned that they going to have to peacefully interact if even at gunpoint.  But then there was disagreement in Europe.  the Global barriers were being lowered as this beneficent ideology of Globalism was slowly accepted.  As expected there were reactionary elements.  In both cases the criminal Germans were the hard nuts.  They insisted on the right to be themselves rather than submerging their identity into what the Globalists wanted.  Their resistance was futile; Globalists got what they wanted anyway, the Globe be damned.  After the second German petulance Globalists crushed them.  Some wanted to exterminate the whole lot, raze Germany to the ground and turn it into pasture land.  I don’t have to tell you that gentler and more loving heads prevailed.   Globalists gave the African troops leave to loot Strasbourg and rape the German women and let it go at that.  You see, there are some sacrifices we all have to make.

     It is best not to oppose Globalist wishes.  Globalism will be had on their terms or they’ll get rid of ya.  As another example, the Kulaks of Russia opposed Globalist wishes and it was necessary to exterminate them to the man, woman and child.  I won’t tell you the intense emotional pain that incident cost the Globalists, those were not crocodile tears as often alleged.  People won’t be happy unless the blessings of globalism are universal.  That’s what Globalism means, universal.

     Now, one of the great advocates of Globalism was the progressive American ‘fantasy’ writer, Edgar Rice Burroughs.  Fantasy, humph.  As Edgar’s avatar of Globalism he created the character of Tarzan the Ape Man.  The brilliance of the ape man is almost incomprehensible.  As Mr. Vernon points out Tarzan united the fauna being man and beast at one and the same time.  His being encompassed all evolution, unlike the rest of us who are products of only a few of the commoner genes, as he passed through the stages of Beast, Negro and European.  How fitting that Edgar Rice Burroughs should make him the very first Commissar, even Czar,  of Africa.  Yes, he was White.  But only we Liberal White people have understood our manifest destiny to bring all peoples together in Globalism.   Well, yes, there were mistakes and, quite frankly, genocides, but they were necessary and not arbitrary.  They were decided on only after long and careful deliberation.  It was like pruning a tree to make it more beautiful.  When Chairman Mao finished pruning the recalcitrant Chinese there were 50 million branches on the ground, but, what of it?  As Mao himself benignly and poetically, he was a poet you know,  intoned:  ‘So?  Will the flowers not blossom in spring and cool breezes not blow across waving fields of grain.’  Of course they would and as proof they have and will continue to do so.  How ridiculous!  There’s always new babies to replace those gone.  Come on! 

     Edgar very cleverly has that man we now know as a villain, Stalin, seek to replace Tarzan as Commissar because he was in fact too just and too gentle with his charges.  Rather than compelling Africans to hew to the Party line Edgar portrays Tarzan letting the Africans do as they please so long as they didn’t kill each other.  That was in his  brilliant history he called Tarzan the Invincible, and he wasn’t kidding.  It wasn’t unreasonable to send a replacement from Moscow but Edgar perversely has Tarzan defeat his replacement.  You can read about it in Edgar’s history yourself.

     So, Mr. Vernon has expended a great deal of effort to prove the unprovable.  He completely mistakes the reason for the US presence in Viet Nam.  This was not nation building as he has been induced by his professors to believe.  This was a necessary stage in the creation of Globalism.  Today the two halves of Viet Nam have been reunited because of their efforts and Globalism is progressing nicely there, thank you very much.

     A larger problem was to bring China into the Globalist empire..  But that was cleverly done by inducing them to manufacture big screen TVs for not only the province of the United States but the world.  Today they are the Globe’s largest manufacturer of flat screen TVs and tennis shoes  and are assisting in the Globalism of Africa sending their tens of millions of excess personnel to help the Africans enter the Global economy.

     I certainly appreciate the effort Mr. Vernon has put into his project; it is regretable he has been so ill informed about the difference between Globalism and colonialism.  Colonialism is when you occupy a country for selfish reasons; Globalism is when you subject or exterminate a people for the right reasons.

     The Global Cabal is sorry people had to die.  As the old saw says:  You can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs.  Its better to be the hammer than the nail.

     I’m sorry Mr. Vernon but I can’t recommend your book.

 

2 Responses to “A Review: On Tarzan By Alex Vernon”

  1. Edwina Says:

    So every book written on colonialism, every course taught was invalid? And no “globalized” nation was ever exploited.

    i.e., your SUV, Exxon and Shell are irrelevant in the subject of Iraq. You are profoundly dishonest.

  2. reprindle Says:

    Edwina: You aren’t reading carefully. I was ridiculing the method of the the review which is a ridiculous understanding of Tarzan. My point was anything can be distorted beyond recognition.

    As you should be able to guess I think the whole concept of globalism is ridiculous.

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