Thursday, September 7, 2017

An Example of Political Correctness

Right now I have a bit of a thirst for books and films that are dark and depressing. I did an internet search for "most depressing books" and came to this link. Bear in mind that this is from the Telegraph website, and the Telegraph is supposedly a conservative newspaper.

One of the novels it lists is Platform by Michel Houellebecq, and this is what it has to say about it: Michel Houellebecq’s third novel, Platform (2001; English translation 2002), led to his being brought to trial for provoking racial hatred. Crimes against humanity, more like, because this is one of the most misanthropic novels ever written, powered by a shuddering fear of Islam, laced with casual xenophobia, and full of shameless, gurning, tiresome provocations.

The very next entry is Beloved by Toni Morrison, about which it says this: A novel about slavery is never likely to warm the heart but this tale of a woman who kills her own child rather than have her become a slave – a crime for which she is forever haunted – is chilling. Of all the crimes committed by the slave owners, none is so awful as the iron bit that traps the tongue of Paul D. He recalls “The wildness that shot up into the eye the moment the lips were yanked back.” A depressing book but perhaps necessarily so.

So a book in which infanticide is depicted is "necessarily" depressing, while a novel which tackles race relations induces the usual ritual professions of disgust-- even though slavery is much less topical than race relations.

I haven't read either of these books, but I don't doubt for a moment that the first isn't "racist", whatever that even means anymore.

This is why I get so tired of the claim that "political correctness is just sensitive language about disadvantaged groups". It's not. It's much, much, much more than that. It's everywhere.


  1. I find myself inclined to list some depressing books for you. In my mind, Samuel Beckett, Nathanael West, and George Orwell are among the most depressing authors.

    1. Please do! Although I may not read them. I reckon 1984 is the bleakest book ever written. However, there is an event horizon where "darkness induced audience apathy" occurs.