Friday, September 10, 2010

New commenter with some great blogs

Ahtzib, a new commenter, has great detailed thoughts on the second post on Lovecraft and race, and the post on alien skepticism that are worth going back to look at.

He also has two great blogs on these topics. First, Miskatonic Museum has interesting thoughts on the Lovecraft universe. Recent posts include a discussion of the sources that Lovecraft used to learn about cannibalism, the geography of Lovecraft (i.e. - where exactly is R'lyeh?), and artifacts that look an awful lot like Cthulu. The second blog is Spooky Paradigm, which is dedicated to UFOs and cryptozoology - it seems like a skeptical, speculative, interesting approach he takes to it all (which I think is precisely the right balance to strike).

Both of these blogs are on my blogroll now, and if anything interesting comes up I'll repost it here.


  1. Thank you.

    The first, Miskatonic Museum, is a bit tongue in cheek (though the Moche article went far enough I felt I had to point out I'm not serious). The point of a Miskatonic Museum "exhibit" is to point out ties between Lovecraft's creations and the real world, in one of three ways. One, like the recent Regnum Congo exhibit, is to look at inspirations for Lovecraft, though usually to open it up a bit further. This would also include details about inspirations Lovecraft used, but likely didn't know much about (HPL knew John Dee was supposedly a wizard, but did he know Dee had obtained an Aztec obsidian scrying mirror?). The second are real-world discoveries, phenomena or events that bring to mind the Cthulhu Mythos. The Gamburtsev Mountains are a good example of this. The third, and I'm developing some interesting material along these lines, is Lovecraft's influence on fringe ideas and belief systems after him. Perhaps it is a coincidence that people believe in the Taos hum, and it just so happens that it reminds us of HPL's ghostwritten "The Transition of Juan Romero." But in other cases, modern mythology has directly lifted from HPL, yet plenty of people really believe it. Jason Colavito has touched on some of this with his comparisons of von Daniken and a few other ancient astronaut authors to the Cthulhu Mythos, though the ties are deeper and more extensive, and they're all part of a larger theosophical tradition. Dan Harms has also taken this topic on with his Necronomicon Files and related work looking at the people who believe in the various versions of the Necronomicon, and Justin Woodman has been doing work on HPL's influence on the occult community.

    Spooky Paradigm is as you describe, with the idea being largely to examine paranormal and conspiracy theory topics with an emphasis on culture. This field has grown in recent years, but I do try to provide the occasional interesting point, along with examinations of the strange and unusual (with the occasional field trip in the mix).

    I'll definitely keep y'all in mind in regards to HPL's thoughts on society and economy, both if I see anything of interest, and in pointing to some of the economic explorations on this side, especially if y'all were to break down say Yithian labor relations and reactions to scarcity, or some such. :)

  2. Ah the Yithians!

    John Maynard Keynes, speaking of the role of investors in the economy, said something that I think Lovecraft would appreciate a great deal - particularly as he began to work on the storyline of The Shadow Out of Time. Keynes said that their job was to combat "the dark forces of time and ignorance, that envelope our future".


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