Fight Club

Erik Toren ectoren at
Wed Dec 15 16:35:19 MST 1999

Hola a Todos

"The Philosophy of Pain and Suffering in David Fincher’s Fight Club

[...]  In _Fight
Club_ this disassociation takes the form of the separation of suffering
from pain. [...]

As two added short comments:

In a recent article in Spin Magazine titled "Nine Inch Nail's 'The
Fragile'", regarding
the band NIN and Trent Resnor, Fight Club author Palahniuk is quoted as
following: "I listened to The Downward
Spiral and Pretty Hate Machine [NIN albums] constantly while I was writing
Fight Club.  There were
cuts on it that I would put on repeat to the point that my housemates were
just insane.  'Hurt' was one of the
big ones.  The lyric 'I hurt  myself today/ To see if I could feel' might
as well be one of the novel's

Sometimes with movies the visual over takes the idea.  Clearly, one of the
running through out the movie is the idea that consumer-capitalist life has
created a society of "numbness".  "Numb" about one's existence and "numbed"
to others existence.  The scenes where our anti-hero becomes addicted to
support groups and the dying cancer patient are symbols of this.  One scene
specially exemplifies this when one female cancer patient pleads to have
sexual contact and feelings before she dies with any support group member
is quickly whisked away from the podium where she speaks.  They are there
to be "numbed".

Second, the movie (I have not read the book) must *not* be seen in the same
light as say "A Clockwork Orange".  "A Clockwork Orange" is a world of
dystopia.  Not "Fight Club".  It's more of a dark, dark satire  of what can
happen now or not so far tomorrow.  A satire about the rise of fascist
elements in society.  Notice how our anti-hero goes from feeling numb,
meeting his "half", organizing the "club" in bars where workers, white
collar workers, and the "barflys" (lumpenproletariat?) hang out, and then
quickly spiriling into "beer hall" fascist groups.  It's a satire that
nearly looses itself into a thriller, but one that tells us how a society
can go from a state of alienation (numb?) into fascism.  It's exclamation
mark being the last shot (the gay porno photo that comes out for almost 10
seconds that repeats a scene at an early part of the movie) that reminds us
that we not just viewers, but that there are others who feel the numbness
in our society.

erik toren
desde la cordillera de Pharr, Texas
Por El Socialismo!
Erik Carlos Torén
Migrant Health Promotion
P.O. Box 337
Progreso, TX  78579
(956) 565-0002

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