Hindley and The Smiths: art vs artifice

Discussion in 'General Discussion archive 2016 (read-only)' started by Mountjoy, Apr 26, 2016.

By Mountjoy on Apr 26, 2016 at 9:05 PM
  1. Mountjoy

    Mountjoy Member

    Jul 24, 2014
    Found this article in the Guardian today and the reference to Suffer Little Children reminded how, at one point, Morrissey was capable of really connecting emotionally with others and could show kindness, warmth and compassion.

    T-shirts with Myra Hindley on them? Modern art has forgotten how to care
    by Jonathan Jones - The Guardian


    When The Smiths released Suffer Little Children, their song about the Moors Murders, they too were criticised for exploiting tragedy. And yet Morrissey’s lyrics do what images of Hindley cannot do, however clever the artistic manipulations of her photograph may or may not be. Morrissey imagines the ghosts of the murdered children speaking to their killers. His Hindley is a woman in hell, haunted by the innocents she helped to slaughter. Reading Morrissey’s words again after all these years reminds me that art can be compassionate: “We may be dead and we may be gone/ But we will be, we will be, we will be, right by your side/ Until the day you die.”

    Last edited by a moderator: May 15, 2016


Discussion in 'General Discussion archive 2016 (read-only)' started by Mountjoy, Apr 26, 2016.

    1. Calamine Lotion
      Calamine Lotion
      I think Morrissey's song did exactly what those t-shirts do, capitalized on criminal notoriety for shock value and attention. He has been trolling his entire career.
    2. Irish blood Irish heart
      Irish blood Irish heart
      It wasn't a morrissey song, it's a smiths song, if your going to troll morrissey at least get the facts right
    3. Anonymous
      Are you ok Rab ? You've actually posted a reply that's on topic.

    4. Amy
      What a sick stunt. Who would want an image of a child murderer on a t-shirt?

      As for Suffer Little Children - I felt very uncomfortable about it, mainly because it mentioned the victims by name in lines like "Oh John, you'll never be a man, and you'll never see your home again." I don't think the family of John Kilbride really needed a pop star to re-imagine their child's death in that way, did they? Morrissey knew the song would be controversial and could be seen as exploitative, but to his credit he met with Ann West and was able to clarify his intentions properly. If I had been affected by that case, I'm not sure it's a song I'd want to hear, art or not. It's living memory and too close to home - unlike, say, his musings on "Jack the Ripper."
    5. Anonymous
      I hope I never see anyone wearing this dress. Very poor taste, it's not art is it ? It's an abuse of imagery by the so called dress "designer" for cheap publicity.
      Remember to read the risk assessment that comes with it kids.

    6. Bluebirds
      As Suffer Little Children was amongst the first Morrissey/Marr compositions it's hard to envisage it being written for the potential shock value on an unsuspecting public. How did either Morrissey or Marr know in 1982 how successful The Smiths would be?
    7. countthree
      Probably they wrote the song because they were very disturbed by the murders -how do not feel that way-, and they thought the authorities and the society failed to protect the children ("so much to answer for"). It's hard to understand that a woman could have taken part in that kind of cruelty. It's a great song, sad and provocative, a warning to their society. I see it as a tribute to the memory of the children and a claim to prevent further killings.
      Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
    8. Water
      Myra Hindley deserved to be on the Imperfect List, but not on a dress.
    9. countthree
      Sadly, we live in a global culture that rewards sociopaths in many ways. Even in societies that call themselves "the first world", innocent victims (people and animals) are portrayed as weak beings who deserve their fate of death and/or exploitation.
    10. Anonymous
      This would go great with my Jeffrey Dahmer underpants and matching Fred & Rose West slippers (one on each foot - you know you want one).
    11. celibate

    12. rifke
      i think people who wear items with serial killers on them--and i know a few--know that it is in bad taste. there's not really anything to analyze there. nobody's making celebrities of the killers. it's simply bad taste for the sake of bad taste. speaking of which:

      my second favourite musicians after morrissey (just kidding). now the smiths song strikes a completely different note, and i dont think it's in bad taste or exploitative at all. it registers to me as a caring j'accuse to an indifferent sky.
      Last edited by a moderator: May 15, 2016
    13. rifke
      that said, i dont think myra hindley has any business being on a dress. not an attractive woman. now ted bundy i could see wearing on my person, but not myra hindley. just kidding.
    14. countthree
      Well, a lot of people use t-shirts with the image of Che Guevara, and he was a killer. In his youth he was a rebel, a revolutionary, a dreamer, but later he turned into a killer. He was executed in Bolivia, where he wento to make a guerrilla war, to turn peaceful peasants into soldiers to support his cause, trying to establish there the same kind of "revolutionary" government that he and Fidel instituted in Cuba. That is, a dictatorship which uses the excuse of comunism (an obsolete government system) to mantain a group of privileged people ruling over a hungry and terrified society. No democracy, nepotism, lack of freedom of expression, explotation, imprisonment of an entire country into a caribbean island. The dream of a psichopath made true: his own group of subjected people to use and abuse. Even more, selfish and blind visitors who go there to enjoy the luxuries of cheap sex tourism taking advantage of the incarcerated population for a few and dirty dollars which end up in the pockets of dictators. Common cuban people can't leave their country, understand that? They are not free to emigrate, they have to escape to leave their country. If they protest they are tortured and imprisoned. And the world doesn't care.
    15. ACTON
      Killers should not feature on t-shirts. Child killers and child molesters should not feature anywhere except the bar of soap that they've been melted into.
      I don't think Morrissey/The Smiths were crass when they did Suffer Little Children. It is a sad and poignant song and not an exploitation.
    16. evennow
      How about "The Killers"?


      What a difference a The makes :)
    17. tyronepowebottom
      i never got the appeal of ted bundy to be honest. I mean, i will never find attractive a serial killer, but Jeffrey Dahmer was not bad looking when he was young. Ted Bundy on the other hand, i will never get why so many women found him attractive :confused:
    18. rifke

      but he was slightly dashing, no? oh come on. in that educated tweed blazered 1970's professorial turtleneck-all-year-round kind of way? i think his smug self-righteous personality is kind of funny, personally. i like the shameless absurdity of it, he was always pointing that little finger of his at people to tell them whats what, when he had like no business whatsoever to do so. my kinda guy if it werent for the, you know... pscyhopathy. i read his biography and i wasnt horrified by it like i am when reading about the lives of other killers. it struck me that whatever ted bundy did to others what he did to himself was far worse.

      jeffrey dahmer, ewwww. although i will admit a certain sympathy for jeffrey dahmer because i feel like unlike with other killers he actually was repentant and didnt want to do the things he did, but felt like he couldnt help it (not an excuse though, i know)
    19. tyronepowebottom
      yeah i felt the same way about Dahmer. He's one of the few serial killers that i found fascinating, but at the same time i don't think he was actually repentant of his crimes, but unlike bundy, he didn't blame it on porn, religion and violence. Dahmer actually had a normal childhood so probably there was something wrong with his brain.His father seemed pretty normal to me:confused:

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