Scholarly article about "List of the Lost"

Brilliant news for fans of List of the Lost and academic / literary analysis*: a new article by Brontë Schiltz has just been published in the Journal of Literature, Culture and Literary Translation, looking at the novel as an example of Queer Gothic fiction. Here's the abstract:

In one of the numerous negative reviews, Michael Hann described singer-songwriter Morrissey’s debut novella, List of the Lost (2015), as “an unpolished turd of a book, the stale excrement of Morrissey’s imagination,” yet from a queer perspective, it is pioneering. This article explores Morrissey’s innovative engagement with Gothic horror, building on his explorations of the mode during his musical career. Throughout the novella, Morrissey subverts numerous Gothic staples, from curative maternity and reproductive futurity to monstrously fragmented subjectivity to condemnations of Catholicism – the latter of which he retains, though to entirely different ends to his Protestant literary ancestors. Through such devices, Morrissey participates in Teresa Goddu’s concept of ‘haunting back,’ turning hostile Gothic tropes on their head to carve out a new space for queer experience within the mode – historically conservative as often as it is transgressive – and reveals the true specter of society to be not difference, but its suppression.

You can read the whole article online here.

*(Yes, this number of actual people is vanishingly small.)
 
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Aubrey McFate

Lonely in Barcelona
If you can withstand the academic jargon, it's a good read. Gracias to the OP. Brontë Schiltz's admiration for Morrissey is on her sleeve, but her style is serious and considered, miles above the trite sycophantic pablum of a Fiona Dodwell. Why can't he ferret out someone like Brontë Schlitz to promote, instead of La Dodwell? The amount of space she dedicates to citing Morrissey's recurring theme of suffocating under cultural and religious pressures to conform to sexual norms is thorough and impressive (one line she neglected is one of my favorites: "nature gave you every impulse | who are virgin priests to tell?"—but then, given all the material cited, it possibly would've been redundant or overkill).

I can't claim to nail it down as firmly as Brontë Schiltz or the person who thinks List of the Lost is an allegory for Smiths has done, but I do think it is at least episodically autobiographical and a quasi-manifesto, even if drunken and unintentional. In so many of its digressions, it's Morrissey's pet projects on display, and in so much of the dialogue (almost to the point where I can see why people might consider it bad writing), it's Morrissey's voice. I think it's an excellent book and rewards multiple readings.
 
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Dirk Blaggard

Well-Known Member
I felt like I was the ONLY person who liked this book when it came out. People failed to see it as a modern pulp novel.
A British man, doing something very USA (by that I mean formate )

Those friends of mine from shitty London all hated it, well they had to show they were more intelligent. I was hoping for two hings
An audiobook version, it was mooted until it was mocked and a short play version.
I also am fond of Kill Uncle.
PS I will read this, although I haven't learned one thing from these "academic " takes. Lots of words to say very little a lot of the time, often way off the mark as well.
I wouldn't; call it "queer gothic" either, more a look back at European gothic tradition
 
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Uncleskinny

It's all good
Subscriber
Unfortunately the metacritics, the aggregated opinions suggest a different view...

 

ACTON

Don't Leave Us In The Dark
List Of The Lost was a missed opportunity and was a tortuous read. In fact it's one of the few books I've ever started without finishing.

It could have been a semi-autobiographical list of all the things Moz loved but lost from a young age to recent years. Toys, records, people, etc. Each with their own revealing story, one item per chapter. With a final chapter focusing on everything he gained/found, or how some of the lost things came back to him. Now that's a book I would finish reading.
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
Unfortunately the metacritics, the aggregated opinions suggest a different view...

It's a shame you don't enjoy scholarly analysis, as this book chapter from the Routledge title Adoring Audience (1992) seems pertinent to your situation:

"The literature on fandom is haunted by images of deviance. The fan is consistently characterized (referencing the term's origins) as a potential fanatic. This means that fandom is seen as excessive, bordering on deranged, behaviour. This essay explores how and why the concept of fan involves images of social and psychological pathology."
 

BrummieBoy

Well-Known Member
It's a shame you don't enjoy scholarly analysis, as this book chapter from the Routledge title Adoring Audience (1992) seems pertinent to your situation:

"The literature on fandom is haunted by images of deviance. The fan is consistently characterized (referencing the term's origins) as a potential fanatic. This means that fandom is seen as excessive, bordering on deranged, behaviour. This essay explores how and why the concept of fan involves images of social and psychological pathology."
This quotation is an accurate description of most of the 'fans' on this site. Totally delusional people whose excesses are more than matched by their failed C List 'icon' whose own life is a textbook example of what happens to disturbed people who believe that external entertainment products and experiences can act as a remedial strategy to avoid seeking diagnosis and treatment for repeated profound interpersonal dislocation and mental and emotional disturbances.

That's why this site continues to fascinate as late middle age people cling to the wreckage of their sinking investment in a discredited 'hero' who posed as the 'voice of a generation' only to be exposed as just another grubby charlatan and inept businessman; with an amusing penchant for conspiracy theories to explain and justify his catastrophic failure to compete and win the prizes of fame and critical adulation which he briefly realised as a young man and which, by his own admission, alone provides meaning and purpose for his forlorn existence.

A truly gruesome case study of a life wasted chasing phantoms of fame, wealth and power.

BB
 

NealCassidy

FREE SPEECH #FBPB
This quotation is an accurate description of most of the 'fans' on this site. Totally delusional people whose excesses are more than matched by their failed C List 'icon' whose own life is a textbook example of what happens to disturbed people who believe that external entertainment products and experiences can act as a remedial strategy to avoid seeking diagnosis and treatment for repeated profound interpersonal dislocation and mental and emotional disturbances.

That's why this site continues to fascinate as late middle age people cling to the wreckage of their sinking investment in a discredited 'hero' who posed as the 'voice of a generation' only to be exposed as just another grubby charlatan and inept businessman; with an amusing penchant for conspiracy theories to explain and justify his catastrophic failure to compete and win the prizes of fame and critical adulation which he briefly realised as a young man and which, by his own admission, alone provides meaning and purpose for his forlorn existence.

A truly gruesome case study of a life wasted chasing phantoms of fame, wealth and power.

BB
You certainly are an authority on people who have wasted their lives, granted!
 
S

Sir Patrickos Stevenssey

Guest
This quotation is an accurate description of most of the 'fans' on this site. Totally delusional people whose excesses are more than matched by their failed C List 'icon' whose own life is a textbook example of what happens to disturbed people who believe that external entertainment products and experiences can act as a remedial strategy to avoid seeking diagnosis and treatment for repeated profound interpersonal dislocation and mental and emotional disturbances.

That's why this site continues to fascinate as late middle age people cling to the wreckage of their sinking investment in a discredited 'hero' who posed as the 'voice of a generation' only to be exposed as just another grubby charlatan and inept businessman; with an amusing penchant for conspiracy theories to explain and justify his catastrophic failure to compete and win the prizes of fame and critical adulation which he briefly realised as a young man and which, by his own admission, alone provides meaning and purpose for his forlorn existence.

A truly gruesome case study of a life wasted chasing phantoms of fame, wealth and power.

BB
Crikey. That's a bit harsh. There are certainly many Morrissey fans who seem to take it all a bit far, in my opinion. There's something about him that inspires a slightly unhinged and partisan fandom.

There are many of us who just appreciate a wonderful, unique singer and songwriter.

Fanatical/delusional/irratonal fandom is very common when you think about it. Just look at football fans.
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
This quotation is an accurate description of most of the 'fans' on this site. Totally delusional people whose excesses are more than matched by their failed C List 'icon' whose own life is a textbook example of what happens to disturbed people who believe that external entertainment products and experiences can act as a remedial strategy to avoid seeking diagnosis and treatment for repeated profound interpersonal dislocation and mental and emotional disturbances.

That's why this site continues to fascinate as late middle age people cling to the wreckage of their sinking investment in a discredited 'hero' who posed as the 'voice of a generation' only to be exposed as just another grubby charlatan and inept businessman; with an amusing penchant for conspiracy theories to explain and justify his catastrophic failure to compete and win the prizes of fame and critical adulation which he briefly realised as a young man and which, by his own admission, alone provides meaning and purpose for his forlorn existence.

A truly gruesome case study of a life wasted chasing phantoms of fame, wealth and power.

BB
That's nicely written, but I take offence at "late middle age".
 

Aubrey McFate

Lonely in Barcelona
List Of The Lost was a missed opportunity and was a tortuous read. In fact it's one of the few books I've ever started without finishing.

I've always wondered about the "tortuous read" criticism. Is it the prose style that puts people off? Because most readers will say they liked Autobiography, yet the prose style is so similar. I seriously doubt that William Faulkner is an influence of Morrissey's, but they are both criticized for writing tedious prose, and yet (as far as I'm concerned) they both have the ability to infuse their long passages with a beautiful cadence and sagacity that carries the reader through. Faulkner drew from the drawling loquaciousness common to his American South. Morrissey's influences are less obvious, but I think he is stylistically upper-echelon.
 

Emotional Guide Dog

Chairman Of The Bored
Unfortunately the metacritics, the aggregated opinions suggest a different view...

be ai

Because if a critic says something is bad, it must be true. I mean come on Pete, how many special editions of Southpaw Grammar did you buy?
 

The Wild Turkey

Wild T!
Turkerator
Never did get a chance to read List Of The Lost.
Yeah, the critics didn't like it when it came out,
but now it looks like the scholars are startin' to
give it a look.
Got a contact down at the bookstore that I might
ask to grab me a copy.
 

Multi

handicapped
Never did get a chance to read List Of The Lost.
Yeah, the critics didn't like it when it came out,
but now it looks like the scholars are startin' to
give it a look.
Got a contact down at the bookstore that I might
ask to grab me a copy.
there's one more copy left on ebay for $5.86 with free shipping.
 
R

Romi

Guest
I felt like I was the ONLY person who liked this book when it came out. People failed to see it as a modern pulp novel.
A British man, doing something very USA (by that I mean formate )

Those friends of mine from shitty London all hated it, well they had to show they were more intelligent. I was hoping for two hings
An audiobook version, it was mooted until it was mocked and a short play version.
I also am fond of Kill Uncle.
PS I will read this, although I haven't learned one thing from these "academic " takes. Lots of words to say very little a lot of the time, often way off the mark as well.
I wouldn't; call it "queer gothic" either, more a look back at European gothic tradition
Actually I love the book too. I remember a lot of criticism and negative reviews, there was too much effort to make it look as trash, I thought, are they too scared to acknowledge that Morrissey can be a brilliant writer? It usually happens for the second book, especially if the first had a lot of success. I hope people will give a second chance to “List of the Lost” it deserves it.
 

Eldritch

Well-Known Member
It's a terrible novel, but at least it's an interestingly terrible novel. It's desperately in need of a sympathic but strict editor, since many rambling sentences have great turns of phrase sitting next to total gobbledegook.
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
It's a terrible novel, but at least it's an interestingly terrible novel. It's desperately in need of a sympathic but strict editor, since many rambling sentences have great turns of phrase sitting next to total gobbledegook.
Yes, agree with this. And I've been trying to find out from industry people what Morrissey's relationship was like with his editor at Penguin, no luck so far. (Which suggests to me that his work basically wasn't allowed to be edited, but don't know that for sure yet...)
 
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