The Pointless Century

S3E4 - Johnny Got His Gun / Pale Horse, Pale Rider

Anna shares her expertise in heavy metal; Rachel describes a book as “peace-y”; Frank complains about Dalton Trumbo’s unwillingness to insert actual communist propaganda into his most explicitly political movie

11 months ago

Episode Notes

S3 E4: Johnny Got His Gun / Pale Horse, Pale Rider

*TW: Discussion of severe war wounds and suicide

Anna shares her expertise in heavy metal; Rachel describes a book as “peace-y”; Frank complains about Dalton Trumbo’s unwillingness to insert actual communist propaganda into his most explicitly political movie; we all think the 1939 novel version of Johnny Got His Gun is a landmark work, but splitting hairs on the value of other examples of the disjunctive post/modernist form is more difficult.

Watch Frank’s video giving an eco-materialist approach to these novels for ASLE 2021 here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-23807y9lQ8

WORKS CITED:

Johnny Got His Gun. Dir. Dalton Trumbo. Writ. Dalton Trumbo & Louis Buñuel. Perf. Timothy Bottoms, Kathy Fields, Marsha Hunt, Jason Robards, Donald Sutherland, Diane Varsi. World Entertainment, 1971.

Metalallica. “One.” 1989. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iT6vqeL-ysI

Porter, Katherine Anne. Pale Horse, Pale Rider. Modern Library, 1939.

Trumbo, Dalton. Johnny Got His Gun Lippincott, 1939. Bantam, 1989.

Further Reading & Listening:

Morton, Timothy. Humankind: Solidarity with Nonhuman People. Verso, 2017.

Outka, Elizabeth. Viral Modernism: The Influenza Pandemic and Interwar Literature. Columbia UP, 2020.

Painter, Mark. The History of the Twentieth Century. Ep. 171-172: “Pale Horse, Pale Rider.” Oct. 2019. https://historyofthetwentiethcentury.com/2019/10/

The Pointless Crew: Frank Fucile (he/him/his) – Lit & Theory, Film & Media, Genre, Enviro & Tech Studies // Rachel Hamele (she/her/hers) – History, Humanities, Queer Studies, Fandoms // Anna Wendorff (she/her/hers) – Communications, Rhetorics of Sci & Tech, Feminism // Madalyn McCabe (she/her/hers) – Sound Editing, European Studies

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MUSIC: Bad Brains – “F.V.K.” Metalallica – “One”

ART: Still from Johnny Got His Gun, feat. Timothy Bottoms & Diane Varsi, dir. Dalton Trumbo (World, 1971)

The Pointless Century is a podcast of informal discussions about literature and film seeking to understand 20th century history and illuminate 21st century politics. Professor Frank Fucile and research assistants Anna Wendorff and Rachel Hamele work their way through comparative studies of canonical works, examples from pop culture, and some cult classics while reflecting on subjects like technology, art, class, race, gender, sexuality, the environment, (as always) war, and (inevitably) fascism.